Quick and Easy Meals for One, Bachelor Style

24 Sep 2013 23:40 #71 by otisptoadwater
If God didn't want us to eat animals he wouldn't have made them out of meat. Besides, there is plenty of room for all of God's creatures on my plate right next to the mashed potatoes and under the gravy!

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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30 Sep 2013 21:12 #72 by otisptoadwater
It's October eve, the bears are on the prowl and I'm itching to make a batch of jerky in my smoker. I know I'll get visitors and likely lose any edibles I leave in the smoker unattended, it's not worth letting the Wundermutt get torn up either. What to do?

Make Jerky In Your Oven

It's never as good as the stuff I make in my smoker and I'm not about to buy a dehydrator when I can get the job done without one.

Gather This Stuff:

2 lbs meat - I prefer Beef, Buffalo, or Elk. Not the really fatty cuts, they'll go rancid. Hanger steaks or eye of round are best (no, I didn't say it's cheap but it is good).
1 part Worcestershire sauce
1 part Soy Sauce
1 tablespoon Honey
2 tablespoons fresh ground black pepper
1 tablespoon finely diced poblano pepper (substitute jalapeno, habanero, or ghost chili to your suit your taste)
1 tablespoon liquid smoke (or risk using the smoker and feeding the bears...)
1 tablespoon of onion powder
Juice of one lemon
1 one gallon zip lock bag

Make it Like This:

Cut the meat thin (think 1/8 of an inch in thickness) across the grain, that's one reason roasts make the best jerky. Tip for getting uniform cuts - freeze and then thaw the meat until you can cut it with a sharp knife - or - cheat and have the nice person at the butcher counter slice it up for you on their fancy slicer (don't if they try to charge you for the service).

Trim the meat into two inch wide strips and then into roughly uniform lengths. Put the meat and all of the other ingredients into the zip lock bag, shake well to ensure all ingredients are well combined then remove as much air from the bag as possible and seal shut. Chuck the bag full of goodness into the chill chest for at least 24 hours, 48 if you want more flavor.

Get a broiler pan and line it with tinfoil (or don't and do the extra clean up) Find a cooling rack or two that fit over the broiler pan. Crank up your oven to 200F, place the meat on the cooling racks but be sure to leave space between the slices so they dry uniformly. Depending on your oven, thickness of the meat, and the ingredients it might take more or less time to dry the meat out, I use 8 hours as a general rule of thumb.

Turn the meat at four hours and start checking the jerky for doneness at 7 hours, if the center is pink keep cooking until the meat is tough and brown all the way through. Air circulation helps to dry the meat faster so prop the oven door open an inch or so, let your four legged friends know that they need to stay clear of the over door or it's burnt noses and paws for sure.

Once the jerky is done let it cool to room temperature and then divide into your favorite size bags/jars. I like to put mine into sandwich size zip lock bags, squeeze out the air, and then store them in the freezer, otherwise I recommend keeping the finished jerky in the fridge but eat it up in the next 2 to 3 weeks.

What to do with the marinade? Make more jerky of course! If you're not going to reuse the marinade right away then throw it away. I've tried freezing it and reusing it later, it's just not the same as a fresh batch. Want other flavors? Add other stuff to the marinade and see what new flavors your experiments yield. Hard jerky too hard on your teeth? Add a splash of pineapple juice during the last four hours of marinating, DON'T make the mistake of leaving pineapple juice in the marinade any longer that 4 hours or you'll end up with a bag of "meat-juice."

The down side is that this recipe takes a long time and I'm too chicken to leave the oven on while I sleep or wander in the woods. For me this is something to make when the snow is falling and there's no reason to even contemplate leaving the house period. Always better on the smoker but I need a supply of jerky now so until the bears are soundly asleep I'll settle for the indoor method of making jerky.

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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03 Oct 2013 20:24 #73 by otisptoadwater
Now that the better weather has returned it's time to start eating an evening meal again instead of choking down a few snacks and junk food in the heat. I like easy meals that don't require a lot of preparation or clean up and this is one of those:

Split Pea Soup

What You Need:

2 cups dry green split peas
2 cups ham, 1/4" dice
2 tsp Bacon grease
1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped fine
1/4 tsp thyme
1 bay leaf, crumbled into very small pieces
Pinch (or three) cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp seasoned salt (I use Lawry's, there's plenty of salt in this dish already, skip it if you want)
Salt and pepper to taste
Water, how much? Enough to rinse, sort, cook the peas, and then make soup.

Git'r Dun!:

Break out the big heavy pot, add the dry green split peas, rinse and sort, discard stones, floaters, and anything else that isn't a green split pea then drain and hold the peas in a separate bowl. Add the bacon grease and the onions to the pot over medium heat and cook until onions are soft but not brown. Remove onions and add the cleaned sorted dry green split peas and water to cover. Soak peas overnight and then bring to a boil, when peas are soft add the remaining ingredients and cook for 30 minutes, add water as needed, taste and add additional spices if needed. Smash some of the peas against the side of the pot and stir to thicken the soup. Best with fresh sour dough bread or made from scratch biscuits.

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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10 Oct 2013 19:31 #74 by otisptoadwater
My most recent visit to the Sawbones won me a complex dietary command, "...move more, eat less, and eat more leafy greens!" So in honor of one of many favorite foods I can no longer consume I give you...

Scotch Eggs


Get This Stuff:

6 hard boiled eggs - peeled of course!
12 ounces of bulk breakfast sausage (try spicy Italian sausage for a nice variation)
Bread crumbs or crushed crackers
1 tsp course Dijon or brown mustard
Ground black pepper to taste

Do This:

Mix mustard and crumbs with the sausage. Divide out into 6 equal portions and pat out each one in an oval patty shape. Put one egg in middle of each sausage patty. Pick up patty and form around the egg, covering egg completely.

Place the sausage covered eggs on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees or until the sausage is cooked. If your cholesterol is not high enough you could flash fry these in 375-ish oil but you need a deep fryer, if you go that route make sure you pack the meat and bread/cracker crumbs tightly or you'll get a mess instead of a tasty treat! Sausage ratio to egg can be increased or decreased according to your own tastes. Adjust cooking time accordingly.

Serve hot or cold with more mustard, Tabasco, both or neither. Share with your four legged friends at your own peril!

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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10 Oct 2013 19:44 #75 by HappyCamper
The eggs sound good still need to try those but the pea soup is not my cup of tea as I am not a pea fan.

We are having green chili tonight yummy!!

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10 Oct 2013 19:53 #76 by otisptoadwater

HappyCamper wrote: The eggs sound good still need to try those but the pea soup is not my cup of tea as I am not a pea fan.

We are having green chili tonight yummy!!


Do you know the difference between roast beef and pea soup?

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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10 Oct 2013 19:56 #77 by HappyCamper
Ok, I will bite no meat and peas are green and gross.

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10 Oct 2013 19:56 #78 by otisptoadwater
Just about anyone can roast beef... :biggrin: tongue:

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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18 Oct 2013 19:39 #79 by otisptoadwater
What's one of my favorite NFL game day snacks? Ground pork, cheese, and hot peppers. The perfect combination if you know how to assemble it in to a batch of:

Armadillo Eggs

Get This Stuff:

Peppers - I like jalapenos (but every once in a while I'll add in a couple of Scotch Bonnets, think Armadillo egg Roulette... lol )
Unseasoned ground pork - enough to cover the peppers in the thickness you desire (thicker takes longer to cook)
Cheese - I like sharp Monterrey Jack or sharp Cheddar but you could use processed cheese food substance and still end up with a palatable end product.
Spices - Fresh cracked black pepper, sea salt, cumin, chili powder, and whatever you want to add

Do This:

Mix the spices and the ground pork well, stem and seed the peppers, and cut the cheese (that doesn't sound right...) into rectangular strips that fit inside the peppers. Stuff the peppers with the cheese then form the sausage around each pepper, ensuring that the thickness of the meat is uniform and covers the entire pepper. Sprinkle additional seasoning on the top of each egg (maybe mark the ones that are Scotch Bonnets so you don't eat those unless you really want to burn from stem to stern for a couple of days).

Fire up the oven to 350F and bake around 35 - 40 minutes, I recommend starting out with two or three peppers at a time until you nail down how long it takes to cook these units to your satisfaction. I have made these in my smoker and the result is SO MUCH better than the oven version but it takes some experimentation to get the indirect cooking to work and plan on spending a lot more time waiting for the final product.

You could serve these with some sort of sauce on the side but I don't. it's important to emphasize to the little kids that this isn't food for them so make sure that you provide the little kids and the folks who can't do hot and spicy with alternatives. I love watching my little brother find the Scotch Bonnet Armadillo eggs, getting the wrath of the sister in law for the same discovery is still funny but she has a good memory and it has come back to haunt me more than once.

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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26 Nov 2013 20:20 #80 by otisptoadwater
A couple of days from now I won't want to see another slice of Turkey until Easter but I always end up with a healthy amount of Thanksgiving leftovers. What to do when you are experiencing Turkey burnout?

Turkey and Wild Rice Casserole


Get This:

2 pounds of roast turkey in slices or chunks
2 pounds of unseasoned ground pork
2 cups of instant wild rice (Uncle Ben's or other brand)
4 cups turkey or chicken broth (fake it you have to using bullion)
2 cups of sliced fresh mushrooms
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
10 ounces of heavy whipping cream
1 cup diced onion
Rubbed Sage to taste
Poultry seasoning to taste
Fresh ground black pepper to taste


Do This:

Break out your cast iron dutch oven or favorite heavy pot, fry the ground pork and add the onions when the pork is mostly done then add the mushrooms and cook another two minutes.

When the onions are almost clear and the mushrooms are starting to cook down, remove the contents to a bowl and add the rice and stock to the dutch oven. Cook the rice according to the directions on the box.

Once the rice is done add the cream of mushroom soup and cream and mix until well combined with the rice. Return the ground pork, onions, and mushrooms to the dutch oven then add the turkey and spices and mix until all ingredients are well combined. Cover and cook over low heat, stir every 15 minutes, and serve once everything is heated through.

Got left over corn or green bean casserole? Add it in or serve it on the side. Best paired with a rare American Pilsner beer such as Blatz, Iron City, or Carlings Black Label.

I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

"Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the Government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian." - Henry Ford

Corruptissima re publica plurimae leges; When the Republic is at its most corrupt the laws are most numerous. - Publius Cornelius Tacitus

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