Saturday, February 16, 2019

Salmon Fish Head Soup


  • 2 salmon heads, or one salmon frame (head, tails, and scraps)
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 8 ounces potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 2 inch cubes
  • 1 large bunch fresh dill
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup cream, or to taste
  • To garnish:
  • About 1/3 cup chopped fresh dill


  1. 1.
    Over medium heat, melt the butter in the sauté pan. Add the onions and sauté until softened but not browned, about 7 minutes. Add the salmon parts, the potatoes, bay leaves, salt, and all but a few stalk of the dill. Add enough water to just cover the fish. Bring the water to a steady simmer and cook until fish and potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.
  2. 2.
    Using a slotted spoon, remove the fish parts from the liquid. When the fish is cool enough to handle, separate the meat and other edible parts (eyeballs, cartilage, etc.) from the skeleton. 
  3. 3.
    Add the fish parts back to the soup. Reheat gently at a low simmer, taking care not to break up the fish flesh. Add the cream and the chopped fresh dill. Add more salt, if needed, and freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately. Leftovers may be kept in the refrigerator for up to three days and reheated over a low simmer.

    from this site: 

Friday, September 21, 2018

Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Bake


Chicken Broccoli Quinoa Bake 2 cups quinoa (or rice), cooked 2 large chicken breasts 1-2 heads broccoli 1 can cream of chicken (or mushroom) soup 1/2 cup sour cream 1/2 cup mayonnaise pepper squirt of lemon juice 1 stick butter, melted 1 cup bread crumbs 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese Cook and spread 2 cups cooked quinoa (or rice) evenly across 9x13 baking dish. Cube and pan fry 2 large chicken breasts, set aside. Chop and steam 1-2 heads of broccoli, set aside. Combine broccoli, chicken, 1 can cream of chicken (or mushroom) soup, 1/2 cup of sour cream, 1/2 cup of mayo, pepper, and a squirt of lemon juice in a large bowl and mix. Spread the mixture on top of the rice/quinoa. Melt 1 stick of butter. in another small bowl combine melted butter, 1 cup bread crumbs, & 1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese. Spread bread crumbs/cheese mixture on the top of casserole. Cover and freeze, or bake covered at 350 until heated through. Remove foil for last 10 minutes to crisp bread crumbs.

Friday, March 02, 2018


(authentic/ from Sara W/ in XJ)

1 heaping C flour, 
1 scant tsp salt, 
1/2 C water

slowly mix water into the flour. When you push your finger into the dough and it leaves a small imprint, it is ready. Knead dough well until it slowly rises back after pushing on it with your fing
er. Let sit 10-15 minutes. When you notice bubbles in the dough, it is ready, but holes means it needs more time. Flatten dough about 1 1/2 in thick. Put oil on each side and cut into strips 1 in thick. Stretch each strip a little by squeezing in your hands. With one hand holding the strip, rub your other hand back and forth across the other end moving down the strip until it is long and about 1 cm in diameter. oil the plate. Coil each strip, coiling from the middle of the plate out. Rub oil on each layer. cover and set while preparing vegetables

3Tbsp-1/2C oil, 
150-300g mutton, cut in strips, 
ginger, diced or 1/8tsp powder, 
1 small onion, cut thinly, 
2 tsp salt,
2 Tbsp soy sauce, 
green beans, cut in 2 cm pieces, 
1 potato, but in thin cubes, 
2 leaves Chinese cabbage, cut in narrow strips, 
1/2 large very red tomato, diced thinly, 
3 hot green peppers, seeds removed, cut in chunks, 
1 dried hot red pepper, soaked 10 minutes, sliced finely, 
3-5 garlic cloves, peeled and minced, black or white pepper
* Can substitute other veggies like spinach or eggplant if you want

cook the topping: 3 Tbsp oil in pan or wok and heat. Fry meat and then add chopped ginger and onion. Cook briefly and add salt and soy sauce. Add beans, potatoes, eggplant if using, red pepper, cabbage, and tomatoes, stirring a while in between each. When potatoes are almost cooked, add green peppers, garlic, pepper, and black vinegar if using. Add spinach if using, and some water. Bring to a boil. Taste. Remove from heat and cover while preparing noodles.

make and cook the noodles: boil water. Stretch the noodles (run through one hand and the other, roll to keep round as you stretch,) for stiff dough, do this twice, for soft, only once. Wrap around hands, one under, one over, until hands are covered and dough is used up. Stretch and slap several times. Boil 2-3 minutes. Lift the noodles from the pot and dip first into a basin of cold water. If you want your noodles hot, redip them in the hot water briefly. 

To serve: Put noodles in a bowl and then pour topping over the noodles. Make sure there are at least a couple of pieces of meat in each dish. Serve with chopsticks. Left over dough can be frozen, and dough can be made days in advance and frozen.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Tasty Egg Roll Rice

(Before starting the main dish, set your rice to cook.)

In a large soup pot, combine:

  • 5 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 5 lbs. ground pork
Cook fully, until no pink remains.

  • 1-2 large onions, chopped
  • 1 head purple cabbage, thin-sliced & cut to bite-sized strips
  • 1 head green cabbage, thin-sliced & cut to bite-sized strips
  • 1-2 large carrots, shredded (I use a cheese shredder for this)
  • 5 Tbsp. grated ginger
  • 1/4 c. minced garlic
  • 1/4 c. soy sauce
  • 5 Tbsp. liquid aminos
Stir & cook for 3-7 minutes, until cabbage softens & onions are transparent.

Generously salt before serving. Serve over rice.

This was easy and EVERYONE in the family loved it. Various kiddos said: "tasty," "filling," "super-good.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Easy Crock Pot, Dump-and-Eat Taco Soup

I could already tell that today was gonna be one of those get-to-5-o-clock-with-no-dinner-plan days unless I took the bull by the horns. 

So I took the easy way out & dumped all these things in the crock pot and plugged it in. Easy. Tasty. No 5 o'clock rush. Win-win-win. 

Dinner will be ready at the time of my choosing and all I'll have to do is pull out the cheese, tortilla chips, and sour cream. YUM! 

In the crock pot, dump these ingredients:
  • 1 & 1/2 pounds of ground beef (or pork) 
  • 2 (15oz) cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 envelop taco seasoning
  • 1 can kidney beans
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 lb. frozen corn
  • 1-2 tsp cumin
  • 2 c water or broth.

Set the crock pot on low for 6-8 hours.

Serve with crushed tortilla chips, cornbread, sliced avocado, or shredded cheese, & enjoy!!!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Pork Stew with Irish Soda Bread

These two delicious recipes swirl together to form a perfect meal (and perfect leftovers) for cold winter nights. The stew takes longer than the bread, but they are both worth the time they take. 

(Thanks, Mark, for the mouth-watering Facebook photo that led to the asking for, and giving of, these recipes.) 



3 lb. boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1-1/2- to 2-inch pieces.  (Note that sometimes this is really fatty.  I had a 4lb shoulder, and by the time I'd trimmed out most of the fat there was barely 3lbs left.)
2-3 oz. thick-cut bacon cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 to 3 Tbs. coconut oil or olive oil; more as needed  (You can use vegetable oil, I just don't like to)
Kosher (preferred) salt and pepper
1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped (about 1 cup)
2 celery stalks, coarsely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1 carrot, coarsely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1-2 Tbs. minced chipotles in adobo (I'd make it 3, it wasn't spicy at all really)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 Tbs. minced fresh oregano (or 1/2 to 1 tsp. dried)
1 cup beer (I used Black Butte Porter from Deschutes Brewery, but Edmund Fitzgerald Porter or Salvator double bock would be interesting too.  These have good flavors that aren't overpowering and they complement the stew well. You could also substitute a red wine, or just use water -- but I don't recommend that.  You're using it as a deglazing liquid and it gets boiled and then stewed for a long time so all of the alcohol should boil away - so you don't need to worry about your kids.)
2-1/2 cups chicken broth  (I prefer the swanson or central market brands if I'm not making my own)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Core vegetables:
6 cups total of Shallots, Carrots, Potatoes, and red peppers.
I actually went over a bit.  I used 1 shallot (quartered), 2 3/4 cups potatoes, 2 3/4 cups of carrots, plus what was supposed to be 3 roasted red peppers, but turned out to be 1 because two had gone bad.  :-)

Position a rack in the bottom third of the oven and heat the oven to 325 degrees F. (You want it to be hot and ready, but I tend to delay this until the last couple batches of meat are done so I'm not wasting energy.)
Spread the pork on paper towels to dry for 10 to 20 minutes before browning. (You can use this time to chop the veggies and dice the chipotle peppers). If the meat is very wet, pat it dry first.
In a 6-quart Dutch oven or other heavy-duty pot, cook the bacon in 1 tbsp. of the oil over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until browned but not crisp, (6 to 8 minutes). Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate and set aside. Do not wipe out the pan!
 If your bacon was really lean - you might need to add some oil.  You want about 3tbsp worth in the bottom of the pan.  You'll want it good and hot. Season about one-fourth of the pork with salt and pepper and arrange it in a single layer in the pot (there should be at least 1/2 inch of space between the pieces).  (Personally - I find it takes smaller batches for my dutch oven - but yours might be larger.) Brown well on at least 4 sides, adjusting the heat as necessary; each batch should take about 10 minutes to brown. Transfer the pork to a bowl.  Repeat with the rest of the pork, seasoning with salt and pepper before browning. Once all of the pork is browned, remove the pot from the heat to let it cool for a few minutes.
Pour all but 2 Tbs. of the fat from the pot. (If there is not enough, add oil to equal 2 Tbs.) Return the pot to medium heat, then add the onion, celery, and (single) carrot. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper, and cook, stirring often and scraping the bottom of the pot with a wooden spatula, until the vegetables begin to soften, 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the chipotles, garlic, cumin, and oregano and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes.  Return the bacon to the pot.
Add the beer, stirring with the wooden spatula to dissolve any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Raise the heat to medium high and boil to reduce by about half, 5 to 8 minutes.
Add the chicken broth and 1-1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil.
Return the pork to the pot along with any accumulated juice. Lower the heat to maintain a simmer.
Crumple a 12x16-inch piece of parchment paper, then flatten it out. (Crumpling makes it easier to manage.) Place the parchment directly on the surface of the stew, allowing the ends to come up the sides of the pot. Cover and put in the oven for 30 minutes.
During this time, chop the carrots, potatoes and shallot.  The carrots and potatoes should be in decent sized chunks.  The shallots can be added whole if they're small or quartered if large.  If you have more time, this is a good time to roast the red peppers.  (Unless you just bought them roasted.)  Just use an open flame (grill, gas stove, whatever) to char every inch of the surface.  When this is done, put the peppers into a bowl and cover it tightly with plastic wrap.  The longer it can sit like this and steam the better.  
After the 30 minutes are up, add the carrots, potatoes, and shallots to the pot. Cover with the parchment paper and lid, and return it to the oven for another 30 minutes. 

Towards the end of this time, take the peppers out of the bowl and with a pair of tongs (if they're still hot) and a knife scrape off the skin.  It should come off fairly easily.  Then slit the pepper from stem to base and cut around the stem - the stem and the seeds should come out easily.  Cut the rest of the way through, and wipe away any seeds and cut out what membrane you can.  Then chop.

When that second 30 mins is up, add the peppers. Cover with the parchment paper and lid, return the pot to the oven, and cook until the pork is fork-tender, about an hour more. 
Stir in the cilantro.  I also like to, degrease the stew by laying a clean paper towel over the surface of the stew and gently pushing it into all the bumps and dips, then quickly peeling it off - repeating as needed till you don't see the sheen of oil on the surface. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Now -- I find that the stew is always better the next day.  So I like to let it cool to room temperature, put it in the fridge, and then warm it up in the oven again the next day (usually ~300 degrees until hot).  Or at least - that's the idea.  I've not yet done it a day ahead as everyone wants to eat it.  I did manage to make it in time for lunch and let it sit at room temp all day and then heat it for dinner though -- definitely worth it. 


The bread is actually really easy to make. Preheat the oven to 450. Make sure you do this first! Once you finish mixing the dough you need to get it in the oven quickly, you can't let it sin while it preheats. Lightly flour a baking pan now too.

Sift together a pound of flour (3 & 1/3 c. sifted-- not packed-- flour), 3/4 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp salt in a largish bowl. Make a well in the center, and pour in about 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk. 

Using your hands mix it together. Spread your fingers out like a rake and mix it in a circle around the bowl. You want a light touch here, and don't overdo it. The baking soda interacts with the buttermilk to create air pockets in the dough and you don't want to break them. Just mix until it starts coming together well. You might need to add more buttermilk - just do it ~ a tbsp at a time or you risk getting it too moist.

Scrape the dough out onto a well floured surface and shape it into a round. A little over six inches across and about an inch and a half high in the center (no higher!). Then flip it over onto the pan so the floured side is up and make a shallow X cut from side to side about 1/4" deep. This cut isn't just in the top, it stems all the way from edge to edge.

Put it in the oven for about 15 mins, then lower the temperature to 400 and bake until it's brown and sounds hollow when you tap the bottom (20-30 mins). I prefer to rotate the bread when I drop the temp as well - it promotes more even baking/browning.

Let it cool completely before cutting. 

It's really fast to make, and doesn't require anything special. (If you didn't know, you can even make the buttermilk for this pretty easily because of the chemistry being used. Just measure out a cup and a half of milk and add a tbsp and a half of white vinegar to it and let it sit for ~20 mins.)

Pretty sure this is the easiest bread recipe I know, and it's definitely the quickest.

Monday, December 16, 2013

My FAVORITE Most-Used Knife EVER

It's a 7-inch hollow-edge Santoku knife. Santoku is just a fancy word for Chef's knife that has a brilliant edge but lays flat to the board (rather than curving). It has become my go-to knife for pretty much everything.

Sturdy enough to cut through something hard like acorn squash, but light enough to slice onions, thin-slice potatoes, chop garlic… it holds up to whatever you put it through, and keeps chopping beautifully. I love the weight and feel of this Wusthof. It's a touch pricey, but for a gal like me who's in the kitchen multiple times a day cooking for a hungry crew, the cost per use is pennies, even in just one year's time. I got mine over two years ago and it's still going strong, and is absolutely my favorite knife in the world. I highly recommend it!

Amazon sells it in this lovely set:
Wusthof Classic 2-Piece Asian Santoku and Paring Knife Set