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Monthly Archives: February 2013

Taco Seasoning made simple….

Just when we wanted to have tacos for dinner I realized we had no seasoning. Thankfully I found this on the ‘Net, submitted by Bill Echols. It certainly beats buying that packaged stuff and is simple to make as needed. I used the whole amount on 700 grams of beef, which I had precooked with some chopped onion and garlic instead of using onion and garlic salt. We try to limit salt intake…..

Taco Seasoning

Ingredients:

1 T chili powder (I used pepper flakes)

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder (I used chopped garlic in the meat)

1/4 teaspoon onion powder (I used chopped onions in the meat)

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon paprika

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon black pepper

If you just use the spices and not the chopped onion and garlic while cooking the beef, store the spice mixture in an airtight container until you want to use it.

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Garlicky Mashed Potatoes with Baby Spinach or Chaya

This is an old favourite. In Mexico we sometimes substitute chaya for the spinach. Chaya is a very versatile item which can also be used as a substitute in your lasagna, I also add it to stir fries! As a breakfast drink you can use it mixed with pineapple drink and some yogurt to make a great smoothie too…

Garlicky Mashed Potatoes with Baby Spinach

What you need

  • 4 c. peeled and diced white potatoes (2 lb.)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 c. whipping cream
  • 1/4 c. butter cubed
  • 1 head roasted garlic
  • 2 c. baby spinach leaves washed or CHAYA (Mexican version)
  • 1/4 tsp.pepper

Make it

Cook potatoes in salted water about 20 minutes. Drain. Return to pan over low heat. Stir with a fork to slightly
mash. Add cream, butter, garlic and baby spinach leaves or chaya (more or less). Mix well. Add salt and pepper. Serve
immediately or refrigerate. If refrigerated, reheat with main meal.

Notes

Roasted Garlic
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut garlic head crosswise. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Wrap in foil. Roast

Cajun Bread Pudding with Warm Praline Sauce

Larry adapted this from Taste of Home and it was incredible with the addition of the rum and peel! The secret is in the dried French bread cubes!!!

Cajun Bread Pudding Recipe (Taste of Home)

Adapted by Larry with the red ingredients….

  • Prep: 20 min. + soaking Bake: 45 min.   Yield: 12 Servings

Ingredients

  • 4-3/4 cups milk, divided OR 2 cups whipping cream + 2 cups evaporated milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 11 cups cubed French bread (1-inch cubes) baked in 250 degree oven until dry!
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, pinch of ground clove and nutmeg
  • 2/3 cup golden raisins, optional
  • 2/3 cup toasted chopped pecans, optional
  • 1 cup of candied citrus peel

PRALINE SAUCE:

  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped pecans optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Dash salt

Directions

  • In a large saucepan, heat 4 cups of ‘milk’ until warm; set aside. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, vanilla, salt and remaining milk. Gradually add warmed milk, stirring constantly. Stir in butter. Add bread cubes; let soak 10 minutes. Add cinnamon, and raisins and/or pecans if desired.
  • Pour into a 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 45-60 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean.
  • For sauce, bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add brown sugar; stir to dissolve. Add corn syrup and cream. Bring to boil; cook 15-20 seconds. Remove from the heat. Stir in the pecans, vanilla, butter and salt. Cut pudding into squares and serve with sauce. Yield: 12 servings.

Mixed Fruit Crisp

MIXED FRUIT CRISP

This crisp is just Larry’s version of an old-fashioned apple crisp.  Be creative, and adventurous!

Servings:  about 8 – 10 medium size

You will need 1 oven proof casserole, with lid or use foil to cover.

(He used our  French white corning approx. 11” x 8.5” x 3”. It was the perfect size for this quantity.)

Grease with shortening or a bit of coconut oil.

Set oven at 350 F.

Fruit mixture

1.5 cups pear: peeled and cubed ½ ‘’ size

1.5 cups fresh figs: cut in 1/8ths

1 cup mango: cubed ½” size

1/3 cup white sugar

1/3 cup flour

4 Tbs fresh grated ginger

1 lemon:  zest the lemon and squeeze the juice of ½ lemon into the fruit mixture, cut the other half into small segments, skin removed

1 cup of toasted slivered almonds

Amaretto for drizzling lightly over the almonds (optional)

Topping

½ cup of flour

2/3 cup rolled oats: large flakes, not quick cooking

1 cup of toasted coconut

I cup brown sugar

1/3 cup of softened butter

1 tsp salt

¼ cup of coconut oil (or use ½ cup of butter instead of 1/3 cup)

The remainder of the lemon zest

Coconut liqueur (not coconut rum) for drizzling over the topping

Honey for drizzling over the topping

Preparation

Toast the almonds and the coconut separately and put them aside to be added in later.

Whisk flour, ginger, lemon zest and sugar together.   Mix fruit together, adding in lemon juice, then sprinkle the flour mixture over the fruit and and mix well to coat all fruit.  Place mixture in the greased casserole.  Cover the mixture with the toasted almonds and drizzle with Amaretto.

Combine the dry topping ingredients, flour, oats, coconut, sugar, salt and lemon zest.  Add the coconut oil and butter.  Mix well and press on to fruit and almond mixture.  Drizzle with the coconut liqueur if desired.

Put in oven with lid on and set timer for 30 minutes.  Remove lid after 15 minutes to allow top to become “crisp”. Reset timer for 20 minutes. Check after 10 min. to see if topping is becoming brown.  If you see the topping becoming too brown, replace the lid. Total cook time should be between 30 and 45 minutes.

Best served with a scoop of coconut ice cream or French vanilla if you cannot find coconut.