Recipes Potato Chowder

Perfect Potato Chowder

The whole family will love this delicious soup, which can easily be cooked up as a vegetarian meal (if you leave out the optional meat toppings).

Potato chowder is great for autumn gatherings, stadium tailgate parties, potluck dinners and casual parties. It’s also perfect for a simple supper on a chilly night.

This family-friendly concoction is easy to whip up in a hurry from items you may already have in-stock in your home pantry.

Ingredients for Perfect Potato Chowder:

1 tablespoon margarine (or butter)
1 cup chopped onion
2 cans (10.75 oz. each) Cream of Potato condensed soup
2 cups milk
1 cup light cream (or half-and-half)
2 cans julienne carrots (Do not drain the carrots.)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Perfect Potato Chowder directions:

In a large soup kettle, melt the margarine over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, and cook till it is fully tender, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.

Stir in the condensed potato soup, milk and cream until all ingredients are well-mixed.

Add the julienne carrots, including their liquid, right from the can.

Toss in the parsley. In a pinch, dried parsley may be substituted.

Heat the potato chowder slowly, stirring often for even cooking. Use a plastic scraper or wooden spatula to keep the mixture from sticking to the pot.

Top with cooked bacon crumbles or shredded cheddar cheese, if desired. Serve potato chowder hot in sturdy mugs or favorite soup bowls.

Cover leftover soup tightly, and refrigerate for a lovely next-day lunch treat.

Here are a few additional variations for Perfect Potato Chowder:

Try adding 2 cans of corn, 2 cups of boneless chicken, ham or tuna (cooked and diced) for a heartier meal.

Perfect Potato Chowder may also be made in a slow cooker or crock pot, as long as the mixture is stirred frequently.

Popular South-Eastern Chinese fried rice recipes

Recipe 1: Chinese Fried Rice with Salted Fish and Chicken

Chinese salted fish is available in Chinese food stores
selling cured meat and other dried foods. The salted fish is popular in
southeast China and is called “Ma You salted fish” in Cantonese. It has a
special strong aroma, which arises appetite, and goes well with rice and
fresh meat.

Ingredients

2 oz. Chinese salted fish

4 oz. chicken breast

1 egg, beaten

1/8 oz. ginger

1 head chives

12 oz. rice, cooked

1/2 tsp. starch

1/2 tsp. salt

2 tsp. light soy sauce

1/4 tsp. sugar

Instructions

Cut the salty fish meat into 1/4″ cubes, and the
chicken breast into 1/2″ cubes. Finely chop the ginger and chives.

Pickle the chicken with the salt and starch for 15 minutes.
Heat half of the oil in a pan and saute the salty fish. When the aroma rises,
add the ginger, chives and beaten egg, stir fry until the egg solidifies. Take
out the saute and use remaining oil to saute the chicken breast until it is
barely well done.

Take out the chicken and heat the other half of the oil. Add
the rice and saute until the grains separate easily with each other. Add the
sauteed chicken and salty fish, stir to blend them. Flavor with the soy sauce
and sugar before turning off the heat.

Note: the salted fish has strong aroma, and if not properly
stored, the aroma will turn into a disgusting smell. Unused salted fish should
be stored in airtight glass containers or plastic bags, and placed at cool and
dry places or inside the fridge.

Recipe 2: Chinese Fujian Fried Rice

This special Chinese seafood and meat rice dish is a blend
of fried rice and risotto, so you can enjoy the delicacy of both at the same
time!

Ingredients

2 oz. prawn meat

1 oz. scallop, fresh or dried and soaked

1 oz. chicken, leg or breast meat

1 oz. Chinese style braised duck (if unavailable, may use smoked duck breast instead)

2 oz. mushroom, fresh or canned

2 oz. tomato

1 egg, beaten

12 oz. rice, cooked

1 T. vegetable oil

1 T. oyster sauce

1 T. soy sauce

1 T. starch

To taste salt

Instructions

Cut all the vegetables, meat and seafood into 1/3″
cubes.

Heat 1/2 T. oil in a pan, and saute the scallop and
chicken with medium heat for 1-2 minutes, until they turn opaque (barely cooked on the surface).

Heat the other 1/2 T. oil, and saute the beaten egg to medium
well done. Add the rice and saute until the grains separate easily with each
other. Take out the fried rice.

Boil all the vegetables, meat and seafood in 12 oz. water.
When the vegetables are well done, blend the starch with 1 T. water, and
add the starch blend into the boiling mixture. Slightly stir and turn off the heat. Pour the
mixture on top of the fried rice.

Note: the feature of this dish is the base of fried rice plus
the topping of risotto. Thus, the starch sauce for the topping should be thick
enough to make the dish delicious.

Chinese cuisine is broad and profound. The rich collection of popular and homemade Chinese food recipes should make some difference of your lunchbox choices and ideas for every meal!

Recipes Gluten Free Side Dishes for Christmas Dinner

When one of my stepdaughters was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease several years ago, I did a bit of research on this elusive disease. I learned that foods containing gluten would irritate the bowel terribly, and worse than that, gluten is found in more than just food. For instance, postage stamps, envelopes, certain bottled vitamins and supplements, and even some cosmetics, may contain some levels of gluten.

Many of the foods we all take for granted at the holidays are loaded with gluten, and with a little bit of homework, a nice meal can be easily planned around a gluten-free diet. Here are a couple of samplings:

Gluten-Free Macaroni & Cheese

2 15-ounce cans of diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons of salt
1/4 teaspoon of pepper
8 ounces of gluten free macaroni
2 cups of cooked ham cut into cubes

Melt the margarine on low heat in a medium to large saucepan. Stir in flour until it become pasty. Bring to medium heat. Stir in the cheese and blend until it melts.

Cook the gluten-free macaroni al dente. Place the cooked macaroni in a greased (with margarine) casserole dish. Add the ham, and then add the cheese mixture, blending well. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes.

This recipe was brought to a pitch-in I attended a few years ago, ironically at the holidays. It is quite tasty.

Sweet Potato-Corn Casserole

Two large sweet potatoes

16 oz. bag frozen corn (thawed and drained)

2 cups gluten-free corn flakes

1/2 cup chopped yellow onion

1/2 cup chopped green pepper

3 tablespoons margarine

1 cup low fat Mozzarella cheese (grated)

1/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese (grated)

Lemon grass sprigs

sea salt and pepper to taste

Boil the sweet potatoes in water containing lemon grass (do not tear the sprigs; leave whole). The sprigs will become tender and soft, please remove them water and discard. Mash the sweet potatoes until smooth.from the When they’re soft, fish out the lemon grass and throw it away. Mash the sweet potatoes and set aside.

Cook the onions, peppers and margarine in a medium saucepan until translucent, but not overly cooked. Stir in the corn, and sweet potatoes and one half of the corn flakes. Mix together and pour into a greased casserole dish. Begin to layer in the following order: other half of corn flakes and cheeses, ending with cheese. Season with sea salt and pepper. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 45 minutes.

Recipes: Enchilada casserole in a slow cooker

Mexican food has a flavor and texture all of its own. The dishes are colorful and so full of flavor that most people have at least one favorite Mexican dish. Enchiladas are one such dish that people seem to really enjoy.

Many families enjoy enchiladas, but have a hard time figuring out how to create them at home. The following recipe is easy to prepare and delicious to eat. When you and/or your family want to try something “south of the border”, give this recipe a shot.

Ingredients

2 pounds ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced (1 teaspoon garlic powder works)
2 15 ounce cans of tomato sauce
2-3 teaspoons chili powder (more to taste if desired)
Salt and black pepper  
24 corn tortillas 
2 cans cream of chicken soup with herbs
4 cups shredded cheese (more if desired)  

Heat oven to 350 degrees

Instructions

Brown beef in skillet with garlic and onion, drain and set aside.

In a large sauce pan, combine tomato sauce and chicken soup with salt and pepper and chili powder. Heat through. Set aside.

Spray slow cooker with cooking spray.

Pour enough sauce to cover the bottom of slow cooker and then line with 4 corn tortillas.

Pour enough sauce to barely cover tortillas and then spoon beef onto each tortilla. Sprinkle shredded cheese over the beef and then cover with 4 tortillas. Repeat this step until beef is gone. 

The top layer will be tortillas; pour remaining sauce over everything and then cover with cheese.

Set slow cooker on low and simmer for 4-5 hours. Serve warm.

This recipe can easily be cut in half to accommodate smaller slow cookers.

This recipe can be altered to suit your own family/individual tastes. Feel free to experiment with spices and even adding additional ingredients. This is a good base and tastes great with sour cream. You can also try substituting flour tortillas for the corn tortillas. 

Recipes Chicken Biryani Rice Biryani

Chicken biryani is an extremely popular rice dish in South Asia. Every special occasion, family gathering or a formal meal here requires chicken biryani as the main part of its menu and it is usually served with lot of pride and ceremony and of course, fresh mint yogurt.

I learned this recipe of chicken biryani from my mother-in-law and I am pleased to say that it always turns out delicious and quite mouth watering.

Total preparation time: 1-1 1/2 hrs

Serves: 8-10 people

INGREDIENTS:

There are probably scores of ways in which chicken biryani can be cooked but the basic ingredients remain the same….chicken, basmati rice, yogurt and lots of spices. So, here are the ingredients for my chicken biryani:

>3/4 kg tomatoes (cut in thin slices)

>3/4 kg onions (cut in thin slices)

> 4-6 green chilies (cut in pieces)

> 750 grams basmati rice (soaked for 15 minutes)

> I chicken (cut in 12-14 pieces)

> 250 ml fresh yogurt

> Juice of 1 lemon

> Salt and red chili powder (1 tsp each)

WHOLE SPICES FOR CHICKEN:

> 8-10 green cardamoms

> 4 black cardamoms

> 8-10 cloves

> 10-12 black peppercorns

> 2 tsp white cumin

> 2 tsp coriander seeds

> 2-3 small sticks of cinnamon

> 1 tablespoon garlic paste

> 1 thick ginger piece cut in fine strips

METHOD:

Heat oil and fry onions till crisp and golden brown. Take them out and spread on an absorbent sheet. Divide them in two parts.

In the cooking pot, cook chicken, tomatoes, garlic paste, all whole spices and half of fried onion. Add salt, red chilli powder and a little turmeric powder. After 3-4 minutes, stir and add yogurt. Cook till chicken is tender but firm and oil separates from gravy. Add ginger strips and green chilies when done.

PREPARING RICE:

While the chicken cooks, boil rice in a separate pot with salt, lemon juice and 2-3 cloves. Drain the rice when almost done. The lemon juice prevents the rice from becoming too soft. Rice that has become too soft is terrible for biryani.

In a big pot, put a layer of rice, of fried onions and 1 tsp black cumin. Add half of chicken. Put another layer of rice, rest of onions and black cumin. Top it with rest of the chicken and add some more rice. Secure the lid firmly so that no steam escapes and let it cook on low heat for 15 minutes. Stir carefully with a big flat ladle so that chicken spreads evenly. Be careful not to break the rice.

Your mouth watering biryani is ready. Serve it with fresh mint chutney or plain yogurt and enjoy.

Recipes Cheesy v 8 Muffins

These savory muffins are delicious with soups or salads.

1 egg
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup V-8 juice
cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
teaspoon baking soda
teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 400 (F).

In large bowl, combine egg, oil, V-8 juice, and cheese.

Using a wire whisk, mix by hand until ingredients are well-blended.

In smaller bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Mix wet and dry ingredients together by hand, stirring gently until blended. DO NOT OVERMIX. (Batter will look a little like Thousand Island Dressing at this point.)

Spoon into prepared muffin pans. (Recipe makes a dozen medium or dozen jumbo muffins.)

Bake for 20 minutes at 400 (F). Remove immediately from pan, and cool on a rack.

Muffins will be light orange.

Recipes Banana Bread

Best Banana Bread

Whole wheat and wonderful, this delicious banana bread makes an excellent welcome gift for a new neighbor. Best Banana Bread is a delicious add-on for a brunch, but it is also a family favorite.

This banana bread recipe makes one sturdy loaf, or several mini-loaves. For a festive touch, Best Banana Bread may also be baked in a Bundt pan.

Ingredients for Best Banana Bread

1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
(about two medium bananas – peeled)
1 teaspoon real vanilla extract

(Note: If substituting plain flour only, use 2 cups of flour, and omit the whole-wheat flour.)

Instructions for Best Banana Bread

Preheat an oven to 350 (F) degrees. Prepare one 8″ x 4″ x 2″ loaf pan with vegetable spray.  Add a light dusting of flour, particularly if using a Bundt pan.

In a medium bowl, mix the flours, baking soda and salt. Set this bowl of dry ingredients aside.

In a larger bowl, beat the sugar and oil with an electric mixer until these are well blended (about two minutes at medium speed). Add the egg, and beat well, until the mixture is light yellow.

Pour in the dry ingredients gradually, alternating with peeled bananas, while blending at low speed.

Spoon in the vanilla extract, and blend the banana bread mixture more.

Pour the banana bread batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake for 45 minutes at 350 (F) degrees.

Cool Best Banana Bread for at least 15 minutes before removing the loaf from the baking pan. Then cool the banana bread completely on a wire rack before cutting.

Slice and serve Best Banana Bread plain or topped with butter, margarine or cream cheese.

Peanut Butter Chicken

Most cooks can agree that chicken is one of the most versatile foods in the kitchen. You can bake it, boil it, fry it, steam it, grill it and even microwave it. There are so many ways to prepare chicken, that it would impossible to count! Wait a minute, have you ever considered preparing chicken in some way with…peanut butter? That’s right, chicken and peanut butter can actually go together. The key to this recipe is an open mind and an adventurous palette. 

Ingredients

3 lbs boneless chicken breasts

2 cans coconut milk

3/4 cup peanut butter (can use up to a 1 cup)

Seasoned salt

Garlic powder

Pepper

Flour

Cooking oil

Stove top instructions

Cut chicken into bite sized pieces and coat with flour. Fry chicken in oil until lightly browned, set aside. In a large sauce pan, combine coconut milk and peanut butter. Heat on low until peanut butter melts and then add the seasonings to suit your taste. Stir well, then add the chicken and toss until the chicken is well coated. When the chicken is thoroughly heated through with the sauce, remove form heat and serve warm. Tip: any leftovers are great reheated for lunch the next day! If there is any sauce, with or without chicken left over, you can pour over cooked rice or noodles for a taste experience that really is good.

The thought of coconut milk, peanut butter and chicken may not be appetizing to some at first, but after a couple of bites they usually change their minds. This is a wonderful holiday/special occasion dish that actually will not break the bank and make you dread the trip to the grocery store. Peanut butter chicken is also a nice change from the same old chicken recipes that your family might be tired of. Some people might even be willing to trade in Sunday fried chicken for this peanut butter chicken…maybe. 

Recipes: Autumn everything stew

Autumn is that special time of year when you feel a crispness in the air and the leaves start changing colors. It is also a time when people start getting out their favorite soup and stew recipes and digging out their crock pots. This recipe for autumn everything stew has come to signal that autumn has arrived in the most pleasant of ways.

This recipe really does mean just about everything goes in it! Autumn everything stew came about one particularly brisk autumn morning when meals were being planned for the day. A favorite autumn activity is using the crock pot to make soups, stews, cider and a host of other things. A quick peek in the pantry to see what was available and voila! A recipe was born.

Ingredients

1-2 lbs beef stew meat, rolled in cornmeal (pour cornmeal into a plastic food storage bag and then add meat and shake well)
5 beef bouillon cubes
6 cups water
1 packet onion soup mix (any brand)
1 can diced tomatoes (any flavor)
1 8 ounce can of tomato sauce (any flavor)
1 TBS minced garlic (fresh works well also)
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
2 carrots, peeled and sliced 
1 celery stalk chopped 
1 can of sweet corn, drained
1 can of peas, drained
1 can of green beans (any style), drained
1-2 tsp salt 
1/2-1 tsp black pepper
1 cup of either rice or barley (optional)
Cornmeal for thickener

Directions

Brown stew meat in a skillet with a little bit of olive oil.

Add water, beef bouillon, soup mix, tomatoes, tomato sauce and garlic to crock pot. Simmer on low for 20 minutes.

Add meat to crock pot and simmer on low for another hour.

Add vegetables and salt and pepper. Turn crock pot up to high and cook for 4 hours.

Turn crock pot down to low and simmer for 2 hours or until potatoes and carrots are tender.

Add rice or barley if you want at this point and cook until rice/barley is done. 

If you do not add rice/barley, then you can add cornmeal to thicken stew, 1 TBS at a time until you reach the desired consistency. 

One of the nicest things about this stew recipe is that you can substitute other veggies and change the seasonings to suit your family’s taste buds. This stew can be served with homemade bread, biscuits, cornbread or simple crackers. Hint: it is a great way to get the kids to eat their veggies and actually like them.

Autumn everything stew just might become a favorite in your home and come to signify that special change in the season. This is the perfect all-in-one meal for leaf parties, family get togethers and “just because it sounds good” days. There is nothing quite like the aroma of a good soup or stew wafting through your home on those chilly autumn days.

Peanut butter bread recipe.

Peanut butter bread is a wonderful treat for all the family, on its own or topped with your favorite jams. It has a lovely crumbly crust and a moreish, soft and “melt in the mouth” center.

Total Time  1 Hr

Prep           10 Min

Cooking     50 Min

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1 egg
1 cup full fat milk
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup sugar
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ butter (salted) unrefrigerated
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence

2 cups all-purpose flour

Method 

Preheat oven to 350 F / 180 C / Gas Mark 4. Grease a standard size bread / loaf tin. Using a small bowl, mix the flour, salt, and baking powder.Using a larger mixing bowl beat the butter and both white and brown sugars on a slow mixer speed for 2-3 minutes.To the butter now add the peanut butter, egg, and vanilla essence and mix thoroughly. Now add the flour mixture and combine. Pour in the milk and mix until you have a smooth batter. Add your batter mix to the loaf tin and spread out evenly.

Bake for 50 minutes or until the loaf center is springy to the touch.Set aside to cool on a wire rack and enjoy.