Quick and Easy Meals for One, Bachelor Style

06 Jun 2014 22:10 #91 by otisptoadwater
Late lunch today with friends, ate more than I should of but got "hangry" about 2000 and toured the kitchen to see what was there. Found some unlikely ingredients but combined them anywho and made a...

Steak and Egg Burrito

Get This Stuff:

1 large flour tortilla
6-8 frozen tatter tots
1/3-1/2 pound cooked cubed steak
2 tablespoons of your favorite salsa or pico
Generous pinch or two of shredded cheese, I had Cheddar and Pepper Jack on hand
3 eggs, go with more or less depending on the size of the eggs
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup peanut or vegetable oil

Do This:

Locate a small heavy skillet or pot and pour in the peanut or vegetable oil, bring to 450 F. In the meanwhile in a separate larger heavy skillet (think well seasoned cast iron here) reheat the cubes of steak and then add the eggs after scrambling them and adding salt and pepper to taste.

Once the oil is up to temperature fry the tots until they're done to your liking. Strain the tots of excess oil and add to the skillet with the steak and eggs and cook until the eggs are done to your liking. When the eggs are done remove them from the skillet to a paper plate, Frisbee, or other serving surface that you intend to eat from.

Place the tortilla in the skillet and turn off the heat, once the tortilla is pliable flip it over and warm the other side - if you're quick or you cooked for a living at some point in your life you can use you're paws just make sure they're clean enough to meet your personal sanitary standards. Once the tortilla is warmed through add the steak, egg, tot mixture on top of the tortilla and then the cheese. I like to let the cheese melt a bit but you do it the way you want to.

Slide the whole mess out of the skillet back on to your eating surface of choice, take care to keep the tortilla on the bottom and the toppings on top. Pour on your choice of salsa or pico and then roll in to a burrito. Let the monster cool for a few minutes so you don't burn your mouth and then eat before it gets cold. If I had to guess I'd say you're final product is going to be about a pound of food - I ended up giving the last 1/3 to the Wundermutt, he chewed twice and it was gone!

I suppose you could add or delete various items fro the ingredients, I would have like to have some re-fried beans (but they keep falling through the grill...) and green chili instead of salsa but I had to work with what I had on hand.

If you're doing it right your clean up will consist of some valuable peanut oil that needs to cool and go back into a sealed container for future use. A pot and cast iron skillet that need to be wiped with paper towels and then a light coating of oil and put away for the next meal, and a paper plate to throw away or a Frisbee that needs to be rinsed off (or you just need to let your furry four legged buddy like your hands clean).

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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27 Jun 2014 23:30 #92 by otisptoadwater
So there I was, standing in front of the day old bread rack when I spied a 24 pack of English muffins marked down to a price that made them jump into my shopping cart, I swear I never touched the bag until I got to the self check out! Then I found myself standing in my kitchen asking myself "...Self, why did you buy so many English muffins when you are only feeding yourself and the Wundermutt? What are you going to do with these things before they get moldy?!" I thought about it and then I answered myself, "Self, I'm glad you asked! I'm going to reinvent the Egg-a-muffin. Hell, I'm going to go one step further and make homemade hashbrown sticks to go with them - better than you can get at the Scottish Restaurant or any other fast food establishment."

Make Your Own Damn Egg-a-muffin Mark II With Tatter Sticks on the Side

Gather the following:

For The Egg-a-muffin:

Eggs, two per English muffin
English muffins
Cheese, I like extra sharp Cheddar but experiment, even pasteurized cheese food substance works in this dish
Breakfast meat of your choice, I like sausage patties, thin slices of ham, and/or bacon
Yellow onion, thin slices or fine dice
Bell pepper, thin slices or fine dice
Salt, black pepper, and Cayenne pepper to taste


For The Tatter Sticks:

Peanut oil or your favorite frying oil
Yukon Gold or Burbank Russet spuds, shredded in to hash browns
Yellow onion, thin slices or fine dice
Salt, black pepper, and Cayenne pepper to taste

Do This:

I make the tatter sticks first, normally a day ahead. Shred the spuds and onion, mix to a ration of spuds to onion that you like. Place all of the spud/onion mixture into a bowl and add the spices then mix well. Form the spuds into logs about the same length and width as your index and middle fingers together. I use plastic wrap to get a consistent shape and size. Freeze the tatter sticks over night.

In a heavy pot (think cast iron Dutch oven or equivalent - I'll spare you the fire safety lecture, just be careful and pay attention to the pot) add enough oil to cover the tatter sticks and bring the oil up to 425F. Fry the tatter sticks in batches, since they are frozen the oil temp will drop so make sure that the tatter sticks cook through and let the oil come back up to temp before frying the next batch. Never trust a skinny chef! Always taste the finished product, you may find that you'll need to add additional seasoning as the tatter sticks drain after frying. If you need to add seasoning do it right after the tatter sticks come out of the oil otherwise the seasoning won't stick to the finished product.

Best eaten right out of the fryer but these units freeze and nuke well. Package the final product in your wrapper of choice, I find that these units are best preserved in plastic wrap and then reheated unwrapped in the microwave or toaster oven. Those who wish to maximize the benefits of the energy they burn every day may find that some tin foil and strategic placement of the package on your automobile's exhaust manifold will yield satisfactory results but some experimentation will be required to determine how many miles are required to warm the frozen product through to perfection.

On to making the Egg-a-muffins... If you buy a large quantity of any bread product recognize that you're product is perishable, you have a finite amount of time to consume it or you'll end up having to throw it away when it eventually goes moldy. In this case the freezer is your friend, if you have bread that you are not going to eat right away freeze it then thaw out the portions you need as you need it.

I generally make egg-a-muffins a half dozen at a time, enough for a week's worth of work and an easy weekend breakfast. Split the English muffins in to tops and bottoms, toast them in a toaster if you have one or apply the desired amount of color to them in a hot skillet. Cook the breakfast meats of your choice in a hot skillet and set aside. Reserve an appropriate amount of fat for sauteing the onions and peppers and frying the eggs.

Saute the peppers and onions with the spices and then set aside. Add a serving size amount of peppers and onions to the skillet and then crack open two eggs per egg-a-muffin and pop the yolks then cook them to just beyond over easy (or what ever way you want them - you're going to eat it not me). I have left yolks intact but I find that if you leave the eggs that way you'll get a sleeve/arm/lap full off hot egg yolk when you bite into the egg-a-muffin. Scrambled eggs work well but you need to form them into a patty of sorts so you don't end up with blobs of egg falling out of the egg-a-muffin, think mini omelet.

Lay out the English muffins and place cheese on the bottom half and then top each one with breakfast meat and eggs, if you need to boost your cholesterol add a second slice of cheese then cover each with the top of the English muffin. I find best results come from wrapping in plastic wrap and then reheating in the microwave uncovered. Of course my fellow manifold meal maniacs might want to experiment with some tin foil and timing.

IMHO, this is a meal that is worth the investment of time. Cook once and eat six or more days in a row. The finished units freeze and thaw well so if you make a batch but don't eat them all right away, no worries, chuck the uneaten portions in the freezer and they'll be there waiting for you when you get back to them.

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 Jul 2014 22:10 #93 by otisptoadwater
It's early July and it's way too hot during the day but you want a slice of pie. What to do? Fire up the oven, heat up the whole house, and suffer from the heat for hours all for the sake of enjoying a slice of pie later?

Maybe there's an alternative product you can make at home and cook outside...

Dutch Oven Fruit Pie Turnovers

Get This Stuff:

1 box frozen puff pastry, I have also done this with a tube of Croissant dough
1 can fruit pie filing, use what you like - I like apple, cherry, and blueberry
1 egg, beaten and mixed with a splash of water
Granulated sugar

Git'r Dun!

Thaw puff pastry and keep refrigerated or crack open the tube of Croissant dough.
Preheat your Dutch oven to 400 degrees F on a burner or over charcoal or wood coals.
Cut one puff pastry sheet into 4 even squares while other sheet is in the refrigerator (if you are
using Croissant dough you'll make smaller turnovers, use two triangular sheets to make a square).

Fill with spoonful of pie filling near the center of the square, but slightly to one side.
Brush edges of square half with filling on it with egg wash mixture.
Fold other half of pastry square over filling to form a triangle and seal at edges by pressing
lightly with fingers.

Cut a couple of slits in top of pastry or prick it with a fork if you do not want it to puff up much
or leave whole if you would like it to really puff. Place on paper plates or wax paper and put in
refrigerator while you repeat the above steps with the second sheet of puff pastry (or assemble the
Croissant dough versions).

Lightly brush the top of each turnover with egg wash. Sprinkle with granulated sugar. Leave
uncooked units in the fridge while you cook other units a couple at a time, if you didn't go crazy
over filling them you can probably get three units into a pie pan at a time. Place four
rocks of equal size in the corners of your Dutch oven, place the turnovers in a greased pie pan then
carefully lower the pie pan in to the Dutch oven so it is suspended on the rocks and "floating" off
the floor of the oven. Put the lid on the Dutch oven and be sure to place live hot coals spaced
evenly on the lid and under the oven so you get even heat through out the Dutch oven. Hot spots are
the enemy of this treat so it may (ok, it will, let's be honest with each other...) take some
practice to get it right.

Bake about 25-30 minutes or until golden brown but start peaking inside the oven at around 15
minutes, it will cook faster or slower depending on the internal temperature of the Dutch oven.
Don't peak too often, every time you open the lid of the Dutch oven you release the majority of the
heat in the oven, but also don't wait until you smell something burning. I recommend assembling
several of these units in advance of serving them to friends and family, you'll want to cook several
for practice to get the exact right combination of time, temperature, and the perfect final
product. Take notes and be mindful that this is a dish that requires the repetition of several
variables to arrive at a consistent result. Once you get the hang of it it's not hard to make this
dish but there is a learning curve so don't be afraid to fail, try and try again until you get it
right, the reward is a tasty treat!

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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22 Nov 2014 13:37 #94 by Blazer Bob

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22 Nov 2014 14:03 #95 by otisptoadwater

BlazerBob wrote:


Bob, you must be reading the advanced instructions that direct you to marinade the bird while it rests! :carve: :cranberry: :oregonwine:

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 Jul 2016 16:33 #96 by otisptoadwater
Hot weather makes me grumpier than normal and when it's really hot I usually skip dinner or wait until the heat subsides and gorge on junk food before going to bed. Here's a variation on something I posted a while ago that helps when it's too damn hot to cook.

Get This Stuff:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound diced chicken, I like thighs for this recipe because they're cheaper
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup rough chopped peanuts
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon Sriracha, or more, to taste
1 (8-ounce) can whole water chestnuts, drained and diced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
Pink Himilayn salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 head butter lettuce

Git'r Dun!

Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium high heat. Add chicken and cook until browned. Stir in garlic, onion, hoisin sauce, honey, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, ginger and Sriracha until onions have become translucent, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in chestnuts, peanuts, and green onions until tender, about 1-2 minutes; season with salt and pepper, to taste. To serve, spoon several tablespoons of the chicken mixture into the center of a lettuce leaf, taco-style. Pairs well with a fine American Pilsner such as Blatz or PBR. Not spicy enough? Add a couple of finely minced Tibor chilies!

:barbeque:

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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16 Mar 2017 20:16 #97 by otisptoadwater
Yes it's a re-post but I revised it so you can cook with Guinness and use your crock pot if you're as lazy as I am. Prepare your beer sponge now so you don't have to monkey with it tomorrow.

Saint Patrick's Day is neigh, here is my favorite recipe for the occasion. New England style with extra vegetables, you could add more veggies like turnips, rutabagas, and parsnips but I seem to be the only one who likes those tubers.

New England Boiled Dinner, a.k.a the 'Merican version of Corned Beef & Cabbage

What You Need:

4-5 pound corned brisket of beef (when the party is over chill and slice the leftovers to make Rubens!)
water (or Guinness flavored water)
1 teaspoon dried basil
½ teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon pickling spices
8 carrots, peeled
8-10 potatoes, I like to use new potatoes so I double due to small size of spuds
2 yellow onions, peeled and cut into quarters
1 small head green cabbage, cored and cut into quarters

How It's Done:

Cover the corned beef with water (or that other flavor of water), fat side up, in a large pot. Add the spices, bring to a boil for 15 minutes and reduce the heat to a simmer. Skim the fat from the surface as necessary.* Cook gently for 3-4 hours until the beef is fork-tender. Remove the corned beef and allow to cool to make it easier to slice.

About 30 minutes before serving, add all the vegetables to the pot. Turn up the heat when adding the vegetables so that the broth is boiling. Turn down the heat to a simmer once broth boils.

Don't want to spend 4 hours tending a pot on the stove? You can use your crock pot to get the same result but it's going to take 10 to 12 hours to do the job. If you go this route I recommend putting the corned beef on the bottom of the pot, then the cabbage, onions, carrots, and spuds in that order.

*Here’s advice on boiling meat from the 1845 cookbook by Esther Allen Howard entitled: “The New England Economic Housekeeper”:

“(Boiling meats) is the most simple of culinary processes (but is not often)
performed in perfection. It does not require so much nicety and attention as roasting. To skim the pot well and keep it really boiling (the slower the better) all the while…and take it up at the critical moment when it is done enough, comprehends the whole art and mystery. This, however, demands a patient and perpetual vigilance, of which few persons are capable.”

If Esther's narrative has not put you off the task of making a simple corned beef dinner, read on:

“…when the pot is coming to a boil, there will always, from the cleanest of
meats and the cleanest of water, rise a scum to the top of it. Proceeding partly from the water; this must be carefully taken off as soon as it rises…the oftener it is skimmed and the cleaner the top of the water is kept the sweeter the meat.”

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
The following user(s) said Thank You: ScienceChic

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16 Mar 2017 21:02 #98 by ScienceChic
I heard something on the radio the other day that made me scream at the caller. :) A woman phoned in and started talking about how she couldn't have corned beef and cabbage, and was so sad because it was her favorite meal, because she's pregnant and she'd been told/had heard that she shouldn't have it because it's not thoroughly cooked and the pickling process might not kill all the bacteria.

FYI, if you cook it like above, or in any crock pot, and heat it to 160-165 degrees throughout, it's plenty safe to eat.

Pretty soon, pregnant women everywhere are going to be reduced to eating only fresh fruits and vegetables if their diets keep getting restricted by uncorroborated claims of potential harm. Sigh.

"Now, more than ever, the illusions of division threaten our very existence. We all know the truth: more connects us than separates us. But in times of crisis the wise build bridges, while the foolish build barriers. We must find a way to look after one another as if we were one single tribe.” -King T'Challa, Black Panther

The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it. ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is. ~Winston Churchill

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16 Mar 2017 22:29 #99 by otisptoadwater
Any organism that can survive being boiled for four hours is going to kill us all!

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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17 Mar 2017 15:32 #100 by otisptoadwater
I'm pretty sure any organism that could survive being boiled for four-ish hours would have killed most everything on the planet by now. Yet one more opportunity to also endorse deep fat frying for health reasons!

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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