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Monthly Archives: September 2014

Jack’s Icebox Salad

My mom used to belong to the Women’s Institute when I lived on the farm. This salad often appeared at family functions with different variations. I was surprised to see it again at a recent birthday party, brought along by our friends Jack and Carlos. This was Jack’s version. If you leave out the bacon it is VEGAN!

Chop up romaine lettuce and spinach and place in the bottom of a 9 x 13 Pyrex dish.

Add the following in layers –
1 cup shredded celery
6 hard boiled eggs chopped
10 oz. frozen peas
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
8 green onions sliced
6 oz. sliced water chestnuts
8 slices of cooked and crumbled bacon

Dressing – 1 cup mayonnaise + 1 cup sour cream + 2 Tablespoons sugar. Spread the dressing over the bacon layer!

Top with –

1 cup grated medium cheddar
8 slices cooked and crumbled bacon.

Cover with Saran wrap and place in refrigerator for 24 hours!! Trust me on this one…it sets better…

When ready to serve cut into squares and place on chilled salad plates.

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Homemade Shake and Bake

Ah yes, another pork chop recipe! You can’t blame me because pork is one of the best things in Mexico. I don’t buy the chops, I buy the loin and slice it to my desired thickness and then freeze what I am not going to use. Since I did not want to use the Smothered Pork Chop recipe, I decided I wanted to bake them for a change. Having no Shake and Bake, although it is available here, I searched the ‘Net for a homemade version, et voila! This recipe was very good and the Shake and Bake can be kept in a sealed jar for 1 to 2 months…good also with chicken…

Homemade Shake and Bake

3 cups bread crumbs – I used the Japanese Panko

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 tbsp. salt

1 tbsp. dried onion flakes

3 tsp. paprika

2 tsp. sugar

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. pepper

1/2 tsp. cayenne I omitted this

1/2 tsp. dry parsley

1/2 tsp. dried basil

1/2 tsp. dry oregano

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl until evenly mixed and the crumbs are no longer clumpy from the oil.

Dump into a Mason jar or plastic container in the pantry for 1 to 2 months.

For Pork Chops – Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dump some of the Shake and Bake in a large Ziploc bag. Rinse the chops in cold water. Let excess water run off. Place pork chops one at a time in the bag and shake until coated. Remove the chop from the bag, shaking off excess breading. Place on a cookie sheet lined with foil. Do the other chops. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Remember, pink is good in pork these days!

For Bone-in Chicken – As above, bake for 45 minutes.

Boneless Chicken – bake 20 minutes.

Recipe from The Black Peppercorn  www.theblackpeppercorn.com

Smothered Pork Chops

Going way back into my memory bank, this recipe was always one of my favourite Mom dishes. She wasn’t a great cook, but this recipe still gets an A in my books! Some 50 years later I am still making this… a true comfort food! Serve them with mashed potatoes and enjoy the sauce…

Smothered Pork Chops

4 medium thick pork chops

1 or 2 white onions sliced

1/2 cup ketchup

1/2 cup orange juice

1 orange sliced

In a fry pan, brown the pork chops with a little oil.  Add the sliced onions and cook on low for about 5 to 10 minutes till they appear transparent. Pour in the ketchup and orange juice. Reduce heat to simmer for about 30 minutes. Check to see that the sauce does get too thick. If so, add a little more orange juice. When the chops are ready, they should be a little pink in the middle still. (Mother always overcooked pork back in those days). Add the slices of orange to heat.

Serve the chops with the mashed potatoes, pouring the sauce over the potatoes.

 

Thanks Mom…

Travels With My Cookbook

I am in the process of completing a recipe book with over 150 of my favourite recipes since I started the blog. It is tentatively called Travels with My Cookbook, in that it contains photos from our many trips. The question is –

Do I make it available in hard-copy or Do I make it so it can be downloaded to any computer? I have had people tell me they are not interested in having a hard copy cookbook around when they can find almost any recipe online…

If I made it available as a download would you consider buying it at a modest price via Paypal? A portion of the proceeds would be given to the local food bank here in Yucatan.

No commitments, just your thoughts would be appreciated… It has a complete index and would be in the form of a PDF file….

 

 

 

Orange Chicken

I came across this recipe from my friend in Toronto who has a blog, Closet Cooking. Indeed, it was great! Check out Kevin’s blog at www.closetcooking.com

 

Orange Chicken
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 10 minutes Total Time: 20 minutes Servings: 4
A quick, easy, light and tasty Chinese orange chicken dish that is way better than takeout!
Ingredients
• 1 tablespoon oil
• 1 pound boneless and skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 1 inch pieces
• 1/3 cup orange juice
• 3 tablespoons honey
• 3 tablespoons soy sauce
• 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
• 1 teaspoon chill sauce such as sambal oelek or sriracha
• 1 tablespoon orange zest, grated
• 1 clove garlic, grated
• 1 teaspoon ginger, grated
• 1 tablespoon water
• 1 tablespoon cornstarch
• 1/4 cup green onion, sliced (optional)

Directions
1. Heat the oil in a pan over medium-high heat, add the chicken and cook until cooked through, about 2-4 minutes per side.
2. Add the mixture of the orange juice, honey, soy sauce, rice vinegar, chill sauce, garlic, ginger and the mixture of the water and the corn starch, toss to coat and cook until the sauce thickens, about a minute.
3. Remove from heat and serve garnished with sliced green onions.

Option: Replace some or all of the honey with orange marmalade.
Option: Add some vegetables to the mix such as broccoli, peas, peppers, etc.