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Thursday, February 23, 2017

February Food in Jars Mastery Challenge Results ~ Salt Preserving

I am participating in a year long Food In Jars Mastery Challenge hosted by Marisa from Food in Jars, and the February challenge was Salt Preserving! There were a host of ways to use salt.

Here are a few suggested recipes from Marisa:

Salt preserved lemons – This is an easy starting point. I make at least one batch of these every year. They add a tangy, funky bite to soups and stews. I often heap a bunch of them in the blender and puree them smooth. I dollop that puree into hummus, vinaigrettes, and other creamy spreads.

Salt preserved key limes – Some readers argued whether the fruit I used were in this project were actually key limes, but that’s what the bag said. They’re zippy and bright and worth the making.

Citrus salt – Another really simple one. Zest a bunch of lemons, limes, grapefruits, or oranges and combine them with chunky salt. Spread it out on plate or parchment-lined cookie sheet and let it air dry. Then sprinkle it over chicken, fish, dips, and roasted vegetables.

Herb salt – A variation on the citrus salt above, this expansive, wide-ranging recipe is flexible and adaptable.

Herbes salees – There’s a version of this recipe in my second book, but I learned everything I know about salt preserved herbs from Joel and Dana at Well Preserved. And so if their post was a good starting place for me, it’s a good starting place for you!

Gravlax – Quick cured and seasoned salmon that takes a few minutes to prep and just a couple days in the fridge to get good. It’s a low effort, high reward project and just the thing to make if you’re planning a dinner party or fancy brunch.

Cured egg yolks – I’ve not made these before, so I point you in the direction of Hank Shaw for instructions here. From what I hear, this relatively quick cure produces something with the flavor and depth of good cheese.

Kraut – There’s so many directions to go here. Start with a recipe that appeals and begin to explore.

– This is my favorite approach, but it just one of many. If you decide to go in this direction, do try to stay away from the brined recipes and stick to the ones that are salted directly, as we’ll focus on wet brined foods later in the year.

Soup base – I almost always have a jar of this vegetable-heavy paste in my fridge for giving depth to soups and stews.

Below is a slide show of the different ways others in the challenge used Salt Preserving!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Salt Cured Egg Yolks

I am participating in a year long Food In Jars Mastery Challenge hosted by Marisa from Food in Jars, and the February challenge was Salt Preserving! There were a host of ways to use salt. I have several ways that I used it, including this method of salt curing egg yolks! Salt curing egg yolks, solidifies and preserved the yolk. There is no definite "shelf" life, but in the recipe/instructions I followed, the author commented that he had some he had stored up to a year. The yolks were still good.

There really isn't a need for a recipe. You just need a container, eggs, salt and cheesecloth. I followed the instructions provided by Hank Shaw of Hunter~Angler~ Gardener~Cook. It is a very simple process. The hardest part is waiting which takes patience, something I am short on sometimes! 

Separate the yolks from the whites.
(Save the whites for another recipe.)
Pour a bed of salt, and nestle the yolk in the salt.

Cover completely with salt, cover loosely
and refrigerate for a week.
I put a lid on the bowl and only sealed one side.

After a week in salt, the yolk is firm,
but still a little sticky.
I brushed the salt off of the yolk, wrapped it in cheesecloth
and hung it from a shelf in the refrigerator.

The second egg is much darker than the first!
I rinsed this one, wrapped it in cheesecloth
and hung it from a shelf in the refrigerator.

I didn't rinse the first cured yolk
before completing the drying process,
so you see some salt in the yolk.

Rich Grated Cured Egg Yolk
I sprinkled some on some buttered toast.
Some suggest sprinkling over pasta like cheese.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Lemon Pepper Garlic Salt

I am participating in a year long Food In Jars Mastery Challenge hosted by Marisa from Food in Jars, and the February challenge was Salt Preserving! There were a host of ways to use salt. I have several ways that I used it, but this recipe is the quickie recipe that only takes an hour or so to complete, start to finish. I decided to infuse salt with citrus and herbs. 

  1. 1 lemon
  2. 2-4 cloves garlic*
  3. 1/4 tsp course black pepper, or more to taste
  4. 1 cup kosher salt

  1. Zest lemon in a shallow oven-proof dish.** Mix salt in with the lemon.
  2. Juice the lemon and add to the salt. Run the garlic through a garlic press and add it to the salt also. Mix the salt, lemon zest, lemon juice and garlic. Use a fork or your fingers to work the salt as much as possible.
  1. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees. Place the lemon salt in the oven for about an hour to dry out the salt. (When it's done, it will be rock hard with no moisture left.) Prop the oven door open with a wooden spoon to provide ventilation for proper drying.
  2. Wait for the salt to cool and use a fork, wooden spoon or your fingers to break up salt.
  3. Package up the salt in small jars.
*I use 2 large cloves or 4 small, depending on their size and the strength of garlic you desire. Add or subtract the amount you want.

**Next time, I will use parchment paper to line the dish, since the salt and liquids harden to the bottom of the dish and can be hard to remove.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Bacon-Wrapped Teriyaki Chicken Bites

I'm hosting a Kikkoman House Party for the Superbowl tonight!  I've started off with these Bacon-Wrapped Teriyaki Chicken Bites. I don't have a grill right now, but I "grilled" them on my grill pan in the oven! It worked great!

Half way through baking and
brushed with Teriyaki Glaze!


4 chicken tenders, cubed
1 package Bacon (not thick cut), cur in half
Kikkoman Teriyaki marinade
Kikkoman Teriyaki Baste and Glaze

Wrap bacon around chicken cube, stretching the bacon to fit, if needed. Secure with a toothpick. Repeat with remaining chicken cubes, bacon and toothpicks. Pour teriyaki sauce over chicken and marinate for at least 4 hours, but no more than 8 hours. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Place chicken on grill. Cook until bacon is done on the bottom, about 7 minutes, and flip. Brush with teriyaki glaze and cook for another 7 minutes making sure not to burn the bacon. Add more glaze to taste. Plate and serve.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Chicken Wings 3 Ways

It is that time of year! Superbowl Time! One more tailgate before the season is over! I give my guests a choice of plain or three sauce options. These chicken drummettes are a favorite for kids of all ages

6-8 chicken drummettes 
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 Tablespoon Hot Sauce
2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
Oil for frying

Make an egg wash by beating the eggs, buttermilk and hot sauce together in a shallow dish. Mix flour and spices in another shallow dish. Dip drummettes in egg wash then dredge in the flour mixture. For a thicker crust on the chicken, repeat that step again... egg then flour. In a heavy skillet, heat about 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch of oil to 365 degrees. (Or heat a deep fryer to 365 degrees) Place chicken in hot oil. (If the oil is not up to temp, the coating will not stick. Do not crowd the chicken in the pan or it will boil in the oil and not fry crispy.) Fry for about 5 minutes per side or until golden brown and no longer pink inside.

Lemon Pepper Sauce

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp minced garlic
lemon pepper to taste

Combine ingredients in a sauce pan and simmer for a couple of minutes. Toss wings in sauce and serve.

Teriyaki Sauce

1/3 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup cold water

Mix all but the cornstarch and 1/4 cup of cold water, in a sauce pan over medium heat. Mix cornstarch and water. Stir til dissolved. Add to sauce pan. Heat until thickened. Toss wings in sauce and serve.

BBQ Hot Sauce

1 yellow onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp oil
1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup brown sugar, light or dark
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup Texas Pete hot sauce***
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Saute onion and garlic in oil in a large pan. Drain any excess oil. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer about 10 minutes. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Crab Pie and Best Friends

Here's another one of the recipe from my book, "Mama's Cookbook". As I wrote the other day, Mama loved seafood, but didn't have it very often growing up because of the cost. Unless you lived on the coast and caught your own, seafood was impractical and definitely a luxury item that struggling families could not afford. Mama made friends with a new girl in school. She was Catholic and Mama didn't know about their rites and rituals. The first Friday that she spent the night at her friends house, they had shrimp for supper. She was in love with seafood! She loved her new best friend, and Fridays were a treasured meal with her!  I was named after her best friend, Lynda! So the few recipes of Mama's that include seafood, I certainly do treasure! I hope you enjoy this one! Notice the note at the bottom. If you are not familiar with my cookbook, Mama jotted notes down for me on recipes before giving them to me. They are a treasure trove of memories!

Crab Pie

1 Pie Pastry, uncooked
1 cup Cheddar Cheese, grated
1 cup Crab Meat
3 Eggs, beaten
1 cup Cream
½ t salt
¼ t Pepper
½ t Lemon Zest

Arrange cheese evenly over bottom of pastry. Top with crab meat. Combine eggs, cream, salt, lemon peel and pour evenly over crab meat. Bake at 325 for about 40 minutes.

Notes: “Your Daddy likes this…Cool or the cheese will burn you!”

When I make it now, I add some Old Bay Seasoning and a mixture of cheeses that I have on hand. I use Swiss and Cheddar or Colby Jack. It just depends on my mood.

Thank you to Brian at Hot Sauce Daily for allowing me to use their photo. It is the closest I've found to what I remember Mama's looking like. I haven't made one in years.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Marmalades of the Food in Jars Mastery Challenge

A group of us are participating in the Food In Jars Mastery Challenge hosted by Marisa at Food in Jars and the first challenge was MARMALADE. It was so fun to participate and the results that the other participants came up with were awesome! Check out the recipes and pictures below!
If you would like to try your hand at making marmalade and not sure where to start, check out Marisa's great tips on Marmalade Troubleshooting

My friend Mary also joined in the fun. She is the Canning Queen around here! In her blog post Marmalade ~ January Challenge on Cooking with Mary and Friends, she stated:

"We all learned a few things from the others too, and everyone cheered on everyone else as their trials and tribulations were acknowledged. Everything from how adding liquor makes the marmalade take longer to jell and set up, to burning the pot ruining a batch happened, but no one got discouraged; they just tried again!"

I was the one that burnt the batch and nearly ruined my pot! 

Check out the Pictures, 

and pick one to make yourself! 

A traditional Seville Orange Marmalade with a Twist
Sue Harris - Jams 'n Pans

Anne Marshall-Candeloro

Lynn Elliott Vining - Southern With a Twist

Veronica McLaughlin Gantley - My Catholic Kitchen

Nikki and Phil Carriere

Nikki and Chris Carriere

Julie Posigian