Chili Without Carne goes easy on the chili powder, but is still flavorful. (Photo by Laura Groch)
Anyone who knows me knows better than to invite me to a chili cookout. It’s never been one of my favorite dishes, and when I was a food editor I turned down many requests to judge chili contests. (It just wouldn’t have been fair. I would have rated everything C-minus.)
Chili has wonderful ingredients in it — meat, beans, onions, garlic, tomatoes — but the “authentic” chili seasoning just turns me off. I’ve always found it bitter and harsh. So I Continue reading
My well-thumbed copy of “The Kitchen Counter Cooking School” by Kathleen Flinn is my recommended reading to you for 2019. (Photo by Laura Groch)
If you’re one of the millions who are resolving to change your eating/cooking/food-buying habits in the new year, have I got a recommendation for you. I have meant to write about this book forever, but I just keep rereading it and re-enjoying it for myself. (And procrastinating too, yes.)
But no more. My 2019 resolution is to share this book with you, so: “The Kitchen Counter Cooking School: How a Few Simple Lessons Transformed Nine Culinary Novices Into Fearless Home Cooks,” by Kathleen Flinn (Penguin Books, 2011).
Here’s the premise. Flinn was in the supermarket one day when she saw a woman whose Continue reading
Slicing a round loaf of bread in half will let you carve off similar-size slices for sandwiches instead of having the slices be uneven in size as you slice the loaf from one side. Photo by Laura Groch
Maybe it’s just me. Who am I kidding? It probably IS just me.
I have a thing about the uneven slices you get from a round loaf of bread.
Don’t get me wrong. I love round loaves of marble rye, sourdough, Italian (oh, Italian …) and multigrain whatever. I have fond memories of my Italian great-aunt holding a basketball-size loaf under her arm as she carved off massive slices with a formidable Continue reading
Brown rice cooks up even faster and fluffier in the boil-like-pasta method, IMHO. Photo by Laura Groch
I have to confess I am late to this rice-cooking party. But I’m here at last, so here goes:
It’s not easy cooking rice on the stovetop. This seemingly simple task is the bane of many home cooks (and why those boil-in-bag rices, which are parboiled, were invented):
Two cups water to one cup white rice, or two and a half cups water to 1 cup brown rice. Heat it up in a saucepan and boil it, but not too hard. Keep the pot lid on but a little askew so some steam can escape. Cook 15 minutes for white rice, closer to 40 minutes for Continue reading
It may not be the prettiest thing, but avocado, mashed and seasoned with lemon juice, holds well in the freezer in a plastic bag. (Photo by Laura Groch)
Avocados are a wonderful treat, full of so-called “good fats” and other nutrients, and delicious in all kinds of dishes. But once they’re cut — or mashed — it can be hard to keep them green. They oxidize, like cut apples. And it’s hard to just plain keep them, once they’ve decided to ripen. They can go bad pretty fast.
With avocado crops booming — and with Cinco de Mayo on the horizon — I’ve got a Continue reading
Fried rice is an easy way to use leftovers and a fun addition to the dinner repertoire. (Photo by Laura Groch)
Lots of folks made ham for Easter, others did a nice brisket for Passover. (We did a pork roast, make what you will of that, Facebook)
So: leftovers. (By now I hope yours are neatly packaged in your freezer, awaiting the call for meals like this.)
This Fried Rice recipe isn’t anything new or fancy, but it’s a fun change of pace and a Continue reading
A simple paper plate in the microwave oven saves a lot of cleanup. (Photo by Laura Groch)
Well, I guess I can’t say “Let’s start the New Year with some Thrifty/Nifty tips,” but I can say “Let’s wrap up February with some Thrifty/Nifty tips.” (Let’s just say it’s been a busy beginning of 2018 for me.)
Anyway, one of the purposes of this little bitty blog is to offer some help in the kitchen (since I can’t be there with you) and some ways to save time and perhaps even money. So let’s try these on:
— Save cleanup time in the microwave by protecting the rotating glass plate with — ta- Continue reading