Still in the spirit of 'simplify', it has been a month since I've stopped hoarding pantry items. I've been cooking a lot more now that the weather is cooler and I am spurred on by the challenge of using only what is in my pantry. Naturally I still have to buy dairy, meat, and produce, but NO pantry items. It wouldn't be so challenging if we didn't have a 6 and a 7 year old. Our 7 year old has just recently begun wanting to try new flavours, yay! Our 6 year old who would eat whatever we gave her the first 5 years of life, has developed a penchant for finickiness. Granted, it is a very refined finickiness. Our 6 year old prefers uncomplicated fresh flavours prepared simply. Sounds like our 6 year old has suddenly become a snooty chef! Truth be told, I have a marked preference for uncomplicated, good quality, fresh food prepared simply too.
1 can of good Italian tomatoes. I buy them whole and crush them with my hands not to impart a metallic flavour from food processor/blender blades.
4 tbsp of good olive oil
1 level tbsp of freeze-dried basil (half a teaspoon if I use the basil sold in the spices aisle)
Simmer over a low heat for about 90 minutes if you don't need it right away or, cook it on medium for 20-30 minutes when you need it quick, but you have to watch it the whole time. I season to taste once cooked because if I add the salt at the beginning, the reduction process results in a salty sauce.
I'm completely off of cold cuts. Except for the really dry, salt cured stuff like prosciutto, salami, soppressata. The listeriosis scare did it. Well, for us it was a scare, but people died. How sad. My favourite sangwich* meat is cooked ham. Prosciutto cotto was my replacement until I got a rank batch from Valoroso's last month. I don't blame them, but I'm off the cotto forever, for sure. Unfortunately all ham freaks me out now. Unless it's smoked and boiled in Coca-Cola.
I make my own sangwich meats now:
ham in coca cola
meatballs in tomato sauce
mini meatloaf in brown pan gravy
After always being afraid of roast beef... my father had instilled in me a fear of failure and tough roast beef so I never I gave it a try, I digress. Well, let me share with you one of the most awesome discoveries I've made in a while.
I scored some pretty inexpensive top sirloin roasts at my organic grocer. I literally paid $5 a piece for two-pound roasts. I anoint the roast with some good extra virgin olive oil. then I sprinkle it all around with Mesquite spice. Crank the oven to 500 degrees F and when the oven is screaming hot, place the roast uncovered on the center rack for 7 minutes per lb. Then shut the oven off and don't, I repeat DON'T open the oven for 2.5 hours. What you get is perfect, tender, medium rare (leave it in longer if you like it pink but not bloody) roast beef. Wrap in aluminum foil and store in the fridge not longer than 3 days. It's much easier to slice cold. Mmmmmm... beefy goodness.
The much-anticipated Bitchin' Kitchen Cookbook is now available. Get your very own autographed copy here!
Hilarious, informative, delicious, and just a little bit naughty, The Bitchin’ Kitchen Cookbook is a guide for the next generation of lifestyle aficionados. Screw stuffing the turkey! Nadia G offers recipes for real-life scenarios: What do you make for breakfast after a one-night stand? What do you serve up to say you're sorry for the PMS rampage? Need to impress the in-laws? Well, Lord knows you may never be good enough, but at least the meal will be!
Divided into themes such as "Halloween Hootenanny," "Bag 'em, Tag 'em Meals," and "Deflate Your Mate," The Bitchin’ Kitchen Cookbook boasts more than 60 delicious, easy-to-follow recipes such as “Save-Your-Sex-Life Souffles,” “Sedate the In-Laws Bison Tartar,” and “Lock-Down French Toast”—along with comedic correspondent reports from the likes of the Spice Agent, Hans, and Panos the Fish Guy. Sassy “Nadvice” sidebars sprinkled throughout deliver practical food, equipment, and serving tips with a hearty dose of humor.
Viciously funny with an epicurean edge, The Bitchin’ Kitchen Cookbook sends pastel lifestyle hostesses packin’ and blazes a path straight to the hearts and stomachs of hungry wo/men everywhere.
About the Author
Nadia G is the mastermind behind Bitchin’ Kitchen TV, a popular Web and mobile content cooking series that won the first annual WAVE Award for Best Mobile Comedy Series, beating out Conan O’Brian’s mobile series. She lives in Montreal.
Try out some of her tried, tested, and true recipes. Nevermind those recipes written by people who pull recipes out of their @$$ to fill a book. You've tried them, you know what I'm talking about. Anyway, buy the book. Cook from the book. Then, write your review on Amazon.com, Amazon. ca, or BarnesandNoble.com. Doesn't matter if you bought your autographed copy from Nadia G.'s site, as long as you've purchased anything at all from the above sites, you can write a review.
Yes, I'm pushy, but I'm a fan, and fan's can be pushy. And scary. And psychotic. No worries, the food will turn out great and there are some pretty good-looking people -and food, photographed in that book as well as Her Chefness. What else do you need?
I will be cooking from the book and blogging about it because... I can.
Finca Los Primos Malbec San Rafael is 100% Malbec from Argentina. It is deep purple. The bouquet is one of light oak and plum fruit. The wine has a rich mouth feel, with some tannins.
I grew up in a house that only served stupefying, 19% alcohol, homemade Zinfadel, Alicante, Moscato, or a combination of any or all of these. When we ate out, my dad would order a bottle of Montepulciano d'Abruzzo. I dated a guy who was an accomplished waiter and new all about and taught me about the finer things -and spoiled me with them! I hail from a town that ritualistically celebrated the uncorking of Beaujolais every year. I know absolutely nothing about wine, but I know what I like. Up until tonight, I was strictly a white wine kinda girl with a penchant for Pinot Grigio. Tonight however, Finca Los Primos Malbec made me a convert. I not only like this wine, I love it. In fact, I think I want to have its babies.
It didn't hurt that it was accompanied by a perfectly medium-rare rib eye steak.
For those of you who have forgotten... and those of you who don't know. Christmas begins on the eve of December 24th and goes on up until February 2nd. That's right. Christmas doesn't end at midnight on December 25th.
My favourite of all my late father's many, many, girlfriends, a lady I think of as my step-mom since I've known, loved, and kept in touch with her for 32 years now, use to make these for me every Christmas when I was little. I make them for my family now. ~R
Makes about 36
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup butterscotch flavored chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350°, (325° for glass dish). Line a 13x9-inch baking pan with a sheet of foil, making sure to cover the sites well. Place the butter in the baking pan and melt it in the oven. Sprinkle crumbs over butter; pour condensed milk evenly on top of crumbs. Top with remaining ingredients in order listed; press down firmly with fork. Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Chill if desired. Cut into bars. Store covered at room temperature.
There's a lot of people out there who would be thrilled with your old baby things. Try contacting a local shelter for domestic violence victims, or a local homeless shelter. They often have women in desperate need of baby items. Your family and friends might not appreciate them, but a poor mother with nothing will think they are treasures!
“A philosopher once wrote you need three things to have a good life. One, a meaningful relationship, two, a decent job of work, and three, to make a difference. And it was always that third one that stressed me, to make a difference. And I realise that I do. Every day, we all do. It’s how we interact, with our fellow man.”