Posts Tagged ‘football food

30
Nov
08

Homemade Bread

breadsliced

As I mentioned in my previous post, it’s snowy and 25 degrees in Minneapolis this morning and I didn’t want to go to the store.  We just got back from a week-long trip, so there’s basically no food in our house.  Decided to make some homemade bread instead of braving the elements.  This also solves the problem of ending up with stale bread every time I buy it at the store.

breadrising

I found this step-by-step recipe on how to make homemade bread at The Simple Dollar.  The process and directions were good except for one small issue I noticed with the part about the yeast.  The Simple Dollar directions say “Mix up the yeast according to the directions on the packet. Usually, it will say something along the lines of ‘add a cup of warm water to the yeast and stir.'”  The yeast package says use 1/4 cup warm water. This is not enough.  You should use 1 cup.  On my first batch of dough, I only used 1/4 cup and ended up having to add water while mixing the dough.  It ruined the consistency and made the dough a little tough.  I ended up baking that batch anyway, but it didn’t turn out quite as well as the second batch I made using 1 cup of water. In the photo below, the loaf on the left had the correct amount of water to start with (1 cup) and the one on the right had too little.

breadbakedpans

Other than the water, I followed the recipe exactly.  The bread was ready in 25 minutes instead of the 30 called for.  We cut into the better-looking loaf first and it tasted great.  No more stale storebought bread for us!

breadcooling

For lunch we heated up some bowls of Dad’s Quick Chile con Carne I had frozen the last time I made it.  Great food for a cold day!

breadchileconcarne

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17
Nov
08

Dad’s Quick Chile con Carne with Homemade Fries and Flour Tortillas

chileconcarne

My dad sent me this great recipe today and I had to give it a try.  It’s getting cold here in Minnesota, so some hot New-Mexico-style cooking was just what we needed.  This is a quick and easy recipe that you can throw together without a lot of cooking time.  Thanks, Dad!

In New Mexico, what we call “chile con carne” (chile with meat) is basically the same as what a lot of people just call “chili.”  Just trying to clarify, not trying to start a “chili war.”

Dad’s Quick Chile con Carne

¾-1 pound 90% lean ground beef (Certified Hereford Beef recommended)
2 cans plain, unseasoned pinto beans (or make your own, but that defeats the quickness of this recipe)
1 small can diced tomatoes
10-12 roasted green chilies, peeled, cleaned and chopped (medium-hot recommended such as Joe Parker or Big Jim)
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 can beef broth (or substitute the juice from a good pot roast or prime rib roast)
2 cups of your favorite salsa (El Pinto or Sadie’s, both from New Mexico, are great for this)
Suggested seasonings:  Garlic salt such as California blend, Lawry’s seasoned salt or Great American Land & Cattle Steak & Meat Seasoning, Hot Shot Red and Black Pepper Blend, Bueno Chile Shakers New Mexico Seasoning, freshly ground black pepper.

In a medium skillet (cast iron is good for this), coat with olive oil, shake in a good amount of garlic salt, and lightly brown the ground beef.  Season the meat with more garlic salt, seasoning salt such as Lawry’s, and a generous amount of Hot Shot Red & Black Pepper Blend.

In a large pot, combine pinto beans, diced tomatoes, green chilies, garlic, beef broth and salsa. Pour in the browned ground beef and put the pot on medium heat and allow to boil slowly for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Seasoned to taste with more garlic salt, Hot Shot, Bueno Chile Shakers New Mexico Seasoning & Rub, and freshly-ground black pepper.

chileconcarnecooking

Serve with hot buttered flour tortillas or quesadillas, or with good hot whole wheat rolls.  It’s pretty hard to beat on a cold, windy day, or watching football.

I served this with another favorite from home – homemade fries. I just let the chile con carne simmer along the whole time I was making the fries – probably 20-30 minutes or so.  The chile con carne has enough liquid, so it would take a long time to overcook it, and you can reduce it down to the consistency you want.

I heated the oven to 350 and threw some flour tortillas in a piece of foil and warmed them while everything else was cooking.  I was impressed with the flour tortillas I found at Cub here in Minneapolis.  This was the first time I’d tried Ibarra’s — they were nice and soft and pliable.  If you are ambitious enough to make your own, a fellow New Mexican’s blog called The Joe Review has a recipe for Grandma’s Homemade Flour Tortillas.  I haven’t tried it yet, but it looks pretty good.

tortillas

11
Nov
08

Beef and Cheese Taco Bowls

tacobowls

It’s guilty pleasure time.  You’ll hear no claims from me that this is a healthy meal, but it’s great for something quick to serve to a football watching crowd or when you just have a nacho or taco craving.  The following quantities make two large or three small servings.

Three large handfuls Tostitos or your favorite tortilla chips
½ pound ground beef
4 Tbsp. salsa plus more for serving
¼ cup chopped onion or shallot
Seasoned salt, such as Lawry’s
½ cup shredded Mexican cheese
1 Tbsp. olive oil

Saute the onions in the oil in a skillet.  Add the ground beef.  Season with Lawry’s.  When meat is nearing doneness, add four tablespoons salsa and mix together.  Finish browning meat.  Put one handful of tortilla chips in the bottom of each bowl to be served.  Spoon ground beef over chips.  Top with shredded cheese and melt the cheese.  Serve with more salsa on the side to be added to taste.

01
Nov
08

Quick Beef Calzones

This is a quick, filling meal or snack. Great for football watching or movie night at home!
I put together this recipe as I went and it turned out well.  I froze half the calzones and
would definitely make this again.

½ pound ground beef
2 shallots, finely chopped (or use ¼ cup chopped onion)
1 large clove of garlic, minced
1 cup prepared tomato pasta sauce such as marinara
1 cup shredded cheese (recommend mozzarella, fontina, gruyere or a packaged Italian
mix)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 roll refrigerated pizza dough
1 egg
cooking spray

Preheat the oven to 425.  Unroll pizza dough onto a cookie sheet coated with cooking spray.  Cut the dough into six evenly-sized squares.  Sautee shallots in olive oil for 1-2 minutes.  Add ground beef and cook until thoroughly browned.  Add tomato sauce and cheese, mix thoroughly and remove from heat. Lightly brush the edges of each dough square with water with a basting brush.  Spoon around ¼ cup meat filling into the center of each square, leaving a border of dough all the way around.

Stretch dough over filling and use the tines of a fork to seal the edges.  Beat an egg and using a basting brush, lightly brush each calzone with egg.  Bake for 6-8 minutes, or until calzones are golden brown and dough is thoroughly cooked.  Serve with warm marinara sauce for dipping.

27
Oct
08

Sirloin Sliders with Cave-Aged Cheddar and Onion Jam with Sweet Potato Fries

These mini-burgers came from a Food and Wine recipe for Stilton Sirloin Burgers with Onion Jam from the Bar at the Peninsula in Chicago.  According to the Food and Wine write-up, “During the daily Gentleman’s Retreat Tea, these juicy mini cheeseburgers are served with a glass of The Peninsula’s house bourbon and a cigar.”

The main tweak I made was to use local Minnesota cave-finished cheddar – Fini Extra Sharp from the Caves at Faribault.  The onion jam was tasty, but the recipe made about twice as much as was needed for eight mini-burgers.  For buns, I used small rolls from the grocery store bakery.

Sweet potato fries were a great accompaniment to the sliders.  I like Alexia frozen sweet
potato fries for a quick and easy side.

I used Dynamite Vineyards 2006 North Coast Zinfandel in the red onion jam and served
it with the meal.  Zinfandel is a great match for burgers and other grilled foods.

13
Oct
08

Juliet’s Spinach and Artichoke Dip

My college roommate Juliet’s mom created this dip and Juliet introduced it to our household junior year at Washington and Lee.  I don’t think we ever had a party without Juliet making her famous dip.  It’s the best spinach-artichoke recipe I’ve ever found and I still make it all the time when we have people over.  I’ve been making this from memory for a while, not really measuring, so it might have morphed a little from the original recipe, but here goes…

1 can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained well
½ medium onion, minced
1.5 cups shredded Parmesan (you can use the packaged tub from the store, but this tastes even better if you grate it fresh)
1 cup sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
1 package Knorr’s vegetable soup mix (dry)

Mix all ingredients together well.  Heat through until bubbly, either in the microwave, stopping to stir every few minutes, or in the oven (approximately 15 minutes at 350).  Serve with Tostitos, light crackers, or baguette slices.  By the way, you can use light sour cream and mayo to lighten up the recipe a little. It’s very rich!

26
Sep
08

Chicken Flautas

Another Las Cruces, NM favorite, named after their flute-like shape —  “flauta” means flute in Spanish.  This is a pretty cheesy intro, but I’m trying to add some local flavor for all you non-New Mexicans out there. This is a great way to use chicken you already have cooked.  These make a good appetizer or finger food for parties, too.

1 large cooked chicken breast, chopped
8 corn tortillas
¼ cup chopped onions
1 cup vegetable oil
Shredded Mexican cheese
16 toothpicks

Preheat oven to 400. Sautee onions until soft.  Add chicken breast and cook until warmed through.  Set aside a plate lined with paper towels for draining tortillas.  Heat vegetable oil on medium-high heat in a large pan until it bubbles when a tortilla is added.  Dip each tortilla in the hot oil until softened, about two seconds.  Remove and drain on paper towels.  Remove oil from heat.

To make flautas, place tortillas flat and fill with about 2 tablespoons of chicken. Some people like to add cheese within the flautas, but I like to sprinkle it on top like they do at La Posta in Mesilla, NM, one of my family’s favorite restaurants.  After filling flautas, roll tightly and secure with two toothpicks each.

Reheat oil on medium-high. Set aside a plate lined with paper towels for draining.  Fry flautas for 1-2 minutes on each side, until crispy.  They should be done enough to hold their shape when the toothpicks are removed.  Remove from oil and drain.

When all flautas are done, remove toothpicks.  Place flautas in an oven-safe dish.  Sprinkle with cheese and place in oven until cheese is melted, approximately 5 minutes.

Serve with salsa and garnish with sour cream and cilantro. These would be good served with Hot Mexican Rice.

I like to be efficient with ingredients I have on hand and left-overs.  Tonight I had a few items I wanted to use besides the chicken breast, including white rice, Tomatillo Salsa, and queso fresco.  I decided to serve the flautas with a couple other dishes as a buffet of Mexican (instead of Spanish) tapas, or small plates.  I made a chopped salad with lettuce, red peppers, apples, red onions and queso fresco, very similar to Chopped Salad with Zesty Lime-Dijon Dressing.  The other dish was white rice topped with tomatillo salsa (also known as salsa verde) and queso fresco.  To go put out some tortilla chips with Sadie’s salsa and tomatillo salsa.




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