Category Archives: Recipes

Baked Disco Tots

You’ve heard of Disco Fries, Right?  Well, here’s my spin on it.

This dish couldn’t be easier!  I baked some Trader Joe’s Trader Potato Tots, following the directions on the package; sprinkled loads of shredded Cheese over the top and put them back into the hot oven for like 30 seconds, just to melt the Cheese.

Now plate and enjoy.  I like mine with Kewpie Mayonnaise, you choose your own dipper, but it’s really not necessary, these gems are perfect just as they are.

 

Chicken Marsala, My Way

Chicken Marsala is one of my favorite dishes not only to make but to eat as well.  I’ve tried several different recipes and have mashed together my own version.

Auntie Doni’s Chicken Marsala

4 boneless-skinless Chicken Thighs (or Breasts), diced into bite sized pieces

1/4 C. Flour

1/2 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Pepper

2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

10 oz. Crimini Mushrooms (Baby Bellas), diced

1/2 of small White Onion, diced fine

1 Garlic Clove, mined

3/4 C. Dry Marsala Wine

1 1/4 C. Chicken Broth

2 Tbsp. Butter, cold

In a large pan, heat the oil; sauté the Mushrooms until nicely brown, remove to a bowl.  Add more oil, if needed and sweat the White Onions until translucent; add the Garlic and sauté until fragrant, transfer to the bowl with the Mushrooms and set aside.

Toss the Chicken in the flour, salt and pepper, shake off any excess.  Add more oil to the pan if needed and brown the Chicken, about 3-5 minutes per side; transfer to a plate and set that aside as well.  Add the Wine to the pan and scrape up the nice brown bits in the pan and bring to a bubble.  Pour in the broth, add back in the Mushrooms, Onions and Garlic, stir well and simmer for a few minutes; add back in the Chicken, stir to combine it all and continue simmering until the sauce starts to thicken, about 5 minutes.  Add that cold Butter and swirl the pan around to melt and incorporate it into the sauce.   The sauce will thicken further, but don’t let it reduce too far.

Serve over Pasta, Rice, Polenta or even mashed Potatoes.  Garnish with some chopped Parsley and grated Cheese.

ENJOY!

 

Macadamia Nut Shortbread Cookies For Mom

Back home in Hawaii, we can get these a~maz~ing Macadamia Nut Shortbread Cookies from The Big Island aka Hawaii Island.  Now that we’ve moved to the mainland, NOPE, NADA, NO CAN GET!  So once again the mother of need raises her head and says, MAKE YOUR OWN!

My Mom no longer lives 12 miles away from my DH and I, so I make up my version of a care package for her every so often.  I’ve added these to her most recent box.

Auntie Doni’s Macadamia Nut Shortbread Cookies

½ C. Macadamia Nuts, Roasted, unsalted and coarsely chopped

1/3 C. granulated Sugar

½ C. Unsalted Butter, softened

½ tsp. Salt

1 ¼ C. Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

½-1 C. Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Melting Wafers

In a food processor, pulse the nuts until ground fine, set aside.  In a stand mixer, cream together the butter, sugar, salt and those ground nuts.  Mix in the flour, just until combined.

Macadamia Nut Cookie logs

Form the dough into two 14 X 3 X 1” logs and wrap them in plastic.  Stash them in the `fridge for 1-24 hours.  Preheat the oven to 350⁰.  Line a **baking sheet** with either parchment paper or a Silpat® Mat (optimum choice).

place slices 1 inch apart

Slice the dough in ¼ inch widths; place on the sheet pan one inch apart.

Bake for 10 or until just lightly golden on the edges.  Place on a cooling rack.  Melt your dipping chocolate as directed on the package.

Chocolate dipped Macadamia Nut Cookies

Dip half of the cookie in the melted chocolate;

Place back on the Silpat® Mat (or parchment paper),

oh my, garnished chocolate dipped macadamia nut cookies

Add optional garnish of ground Macadamia Nuts;

Allow to cool completely, wrap and gift.

ALOHA!

**It’s best to use a light colored baking sheet for lighter colored baked goods**

a lighter colored pan makes for lighter colored bottoms on my our baked goods

Pot Pie Fail

You remember my post a while back about Pot Pie For My Husband, right?

Well, it’s been quite some time since I last made this uber yummy dish, so here we go…

Looks good Chicken Pot Pie

It looks good, but, hmmm.  I didn’t have any butter, so I used Vegetable Shortening instead.  As I was making the dough for the crust, it just didn’t feel right, y’know?

Chicken Pot Pie made with Crisco

It smelled heavenly!  I let is cool for a bit before we dove in …

Chicken Pot Pie

NOPE!  That’s a fail alright.  WAY  too crumble-y, not enough gravy and kinda dry inside.

SO!  Lesson learned.  Stick with what is already tried-and-true. But that’s okay, we all have an oops now and again.

 

 

Espresso Dry Rub

I have two friends that are chefs, and we started to talk about dry rubs for grilling, etc.  Oddly enough, I had never made nor used a dry rub before.  So both of them sent me their recipes and I did a mash of the two to my own liking.

Auntie’s All-Purpose Dry Rub

1/2 C. Kosher or Sea Ssalt

1/4 C. Sweet Paprika

1/4 C. Brown Sugar

3 Tbsp. coarsely fresh ground Black Pepper

2 Tbsp. mild Chili Powder

1 1/2 Tbsp. Espresso or ground (very, very fine ground) Coffee

1 Tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa

1 Tbsp. granulated Garlic

1 Tbsp. granulated Onion

1 Tbsp. ground Cumin

1 Tbsp. ground Cinnamon

1 Tbsp. ground Ginger

1 Tbsp. dried Oregano

1 Tbsp. dried Parsley

Throw everything into a Food Processor and whiz it up.

If using coarse Sea Salt, as I did, whiz the Salt first to your desired texture, then add the remaining ingredients and process.  And remember to shake well before using 😉

Make your own Spice Rub

This recipe yields 2 cups, which with fit nicely in a one pint Mason Jar.  This one’s for my Mom.

Store in airtight containers in your cool, dark cupboard, indefinitely.  But it won’t last too terribly long, `cuz you’ll be using this on everything.  Rubs aren’t just for grilled foods, you could use this mixture for any application.

My favorite way though is to use a generous amount of rub on boneless, thick, center cut Pork Chops and leave them alone in the `fridge for the day or even longer.

I load up my adorable little Gas Grill Smoker Box that I recently purchased and on they go.

And I call that dinner!

**Cook’s note: If you package your Dry Rub in a nice, labeled container, this makes a welcomed gift.

As always, recipes are simply someone else’s idea.  Take it and make it your own.  Maybe try Smoked Paprika, really lovely or some Citrus Zest; how about more Brown Sugar for a sweeter finish.

Enjoy!

Meyer Lemon & Thyme Infused Sea Salt

Meyer Lemons just arrived in our local Green Grocery.  These little darlings have the most wonderful smell.  They kinda brighten up a Winter’s Day.  I wanted to try something different with them, AH!  Flavored Salt.

Ball® Brand Dry Spice Jars

I found these jars at the Mega-Mart and thought this would be perfect for Food As Gifts.

So here’s how it went …

 

Auntie Doni’s Meyer Lemon & Thyme Infused Sea Salt

½ C. Coarse Sea Salt

2 Meyer Lemons, zested (approximately 2 Tbsp. of zest, no white pith please)

2 Tbsp. fresh Thyme, cleaned and dried well (leaves only, stripped off the stems)

Place all of the ingredients into a Food Processor and whiz it up to the coarseness of your choice.

Ball® Brand Dry Spice Jars filled with my Sea Salt

You’ll have enough Salt to fill 2 four ounce Mason Jars.

Refrigeration is not necessary in an airtight container, such as a Mason Jar.  Your infused salt will last indefinitely in a cool, dark cupboard.

Shucks, I had to use different jars

And this my friends is why I had to return those uber cute jars, they’re not airtight, DANG IT!!  I transferred the salt into regular 4 oz. jars, fitted with new lids and rings.  Oh well.  But I mean, come on man!  How great does that look?!

I shared a jar with Missus Dear Friend, who has tried her share of the bounty on acoupla things already.

Her first try was on some Baked Salmon Fillets served with her KILLER Caesar Salad; next was her outstanding Guacamole, MMM!

The possibilities are endless.

*Cook’s Tip: You don’t need to go out and buy expensive labels.  Use your favorite Word Processor and print out whatever you like, in the font and colors that tickle your fancy; use your choice of crafting scissors and a glue stick.  That’s it.  It’s simple, cute and the label will wash right off with warm, soapy water.

Enjoy!

National Random Acts Of Kindness Day 2017

Today is such a beautiful day out, which has really lifted my spirits, what after all this rain and gloomy days we’ve been having.  I found a WHOLE BIG BUNCH of leftover cooked Rice in my freezer and I thought Hawaiian Fried Rice would be very ONO (delicious in Hawaiian)!

Once I got the dish all done, I thought, geez, that’s an awful lot of Fried Rice.  Why not share with our new next door neighbors?  Yeah, that would be perfect, seeing as today is National Random Acts Of Kindness Day.

So yeah!  That’s alot alright.  What I did to finish the dish was scooped up a healthy portion for myself and my husband and then added Peas and Carrots to the rice that is going to be shared.  Not our cup of tea, but I know that folks here on the mainland like it that way.  I always keep foil containers handy just for this. LUNCH!

Happy Aloha Friday!