Goodcookbecky's Blog

Letting the juices of life (or food) drip from my chin!


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Hawaiian Potato Macaroni Salad II

IMG_7001This is my second recipe for Hawaiian Potato Macaroni Salad that I have made to replicate the salad I had at a Luau in Maui last year.  My husband and I both agree that this is the better recipe of the two Potato Mac Salads.  I received this recipe from an acquaintance on a food forum, who lives in Hawaii.  It is a winner!  I think the key ingredient that makes this recipe great is the Spike Seasoning.   You should be able to find it at your grocery store.  There was also 1 teaspoon salt added to this recipe, but I think I would omit it next time it makes it very salty.  If you feel it needs more salt though by all means add it.

Hawaiian Potato Macaroni Salad

Serves 6

adapted from Bill’s Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 2 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup dry elbow macaroni
  • 3 large eggs, hard boiled and chopped
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion, grated
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1 medium carrot peeled and grated on the finest grater
  • 1 Tbsp sweet pickle relish
  • 2 tsp spike seasoning (look for at grocer)
  • Mayonnaise, to taste
  • 1 Tbsp mustard

Instructions

Cover the potato cubes with cold salted water and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to low and cover, continuing to cook the potatoes for 12 to 15 minutes.  Drain immediately and set aside to cool completely.

Cover the eggs with cold water, bring to a boil.  Turn heat off, cover and allow the eggs to cook in the hot water for 10 minutes.  When the 10 minutes are up immediately shock the eggs in water with ice cubes added to them.  This prevents the eggs from developing a green ring around the yolk.  Peel and chop the eggs once cooled.

Cook the elbow macaroni according to package directions.  Drain and rinse with cold water to cool them off and stop the cooking.

Grate the sweet onion and carrot with a grater and place the grated vegetables in a large salad bowl.  Add the frozen peas (don’t worry they thaw quickly – just make sure they are not super icy or you will add water to your salad too.. if it is frosty you can rinse them in warm water first).

Add the potato, elbow macaroni, boiled chopped egg to the vegetables.  Then add the sweet pickle relish, spike seasoning, enough mayo to make it creamy (to taste) and mustard.  Stir gently with a spatula to fold the salad together and not break the potatoes up too much.

Chill or serve immediately.  If you do chill it you may need to add more mayonnaise just before serving.

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Chopped Salad

IMG_6995My husband took me to Duane’s Steakhouse (@ the Mission Inn) for Valentines Day and we had a great meal that included a chopped salad.  It was unlike any other we had ever had. It had lettuce, hearts of palm, bacon crumbles, blue cheese, red onions, sliced green olives with pimentos, tossed in a garlic vinaigrette dressing. I went overboard in adding the green olives this time, but know to adjust that for next time.  It is a delicious combination that I will make again and again… now to replicate the dessert we had there.. wishful thinking – maybe we will just have to go back!

This salad is inspired by Duane’s Steakhouse (@The Mission Inn in Riverside, CA)

Chopped Salad

by goodcookbecky

Serves 2

  • 1/2 head lettuce, washed, drained and chopped
  • 4 strips of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1/3 cup sliced green olives and pimentos
  • 1 can hearts of palm, drained and sliced (Roland brand is good)
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 oz crumbled blue cheese

Garlic Vinaigrette Dressing:

  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Instructions:

Prepare the Garlic Vinaigrette by combining the olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic paste (or 2 cloves minced), salt, pepper and whisk to combine.  Allow to sit while you make your salad, and mix the dressing again just before adding some of it to the salad and toss (do not use all the dressing, use as much as needed to dress the salad without overwhelming it. I used about 1/4 cup of the dressing and reserved the dressing for another time).

Prepare the chopped salad, combining the chopped lettuce, sliced hearts of palm, chopped red onion, sliced green olives, bacon crumbles, blue cheese crumbles.  Toss together.  Pour some dressing over the salad and toss again.  Start with about 2 tablespoons of dressing and add more after tasting to see if you like it and add more if desired, tossing again after adding more.

Divide the salad up between two bowls and eat immediately.

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Lemon Chicken

IMG_6988It has been a while since I made this dish.  I am not sure why I have not made it more often. It reminds me of Lemon Chicken that you can get at popular Chinese restaurants.  I did blog this recipe before, but in 2010 and without picture. The original recipe can be found here. It is a popular recipe on allrecipes, and my family gives it two thumbs up.

Lemon Chicken

adapted from allrecipes

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 4 large boneless skinless chicken breast halves, sliced thinly

Marinade:

  • 2 Tbsp dry sherry
  • 2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Breading:

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

For frying:

  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups vegetable oil

Lemon Sauce:

  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 lemon sliced

Instructions

Slice the chicken breast halves into thin strips.

In a large zip top bag, combine the dry sherry, soy sauce and salt together.  Add the thin chicken strips to the marinade and allow to sit for 20 to 30 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg, 1/4 cup cornstarch and baking powder until it forms a smooth batter.

To prepare the lemon sauce, combine the 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, white sugar, lemon juice, cornstarch, chicken broth, salt whisking until combined and add the lemon slices to the bowl.  Set aside until the chicken is ready.

Preheat the 1 1/2 to 2 cups oil over medium high heat in a non stick skillet. Also preheat your oven to 325°F to keep the chicken warm while you finish cooking.

Remove the chicken with tongs from the marinade, allowing the excess to drip off first.  Add to the prepared batter, toss to coat (it will make a thin coat, but don’t worry it will work perfectly).  Carefully add a few battered chicken strips to the hot oil without over crowding the skillet with chicken.  Fry for a minute or two until golden brown on one side and turn over with clean tongs. Cook on second side and then remove to a casserole dish (Keep chicken warm in pre heated oven while cooking remaining batches of chicken).  Cook remaining chicken the same way.

Pour off the excess hot frying oil and wipe the skillet with a paper towel.  Use the same skillet to heat the prepared lemon sauce.  Heat over medium high and stir until the sauce thickens.  Pour over the chicken pieces.  Serve with steamed white rice (or baked brown rice) and a vegetable to round out the meal.

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Baked Brown Rice

IMG_6978Cooking brown rice has been a struggle for me.  I overcook it and it is mushy, under cook it and is crunchy.  Rice cookers have not been the solution to this problem  either.  I found this recipe from America’s Test Kitchen, which bakes the brown rice in the oven in a covered casserole!  Success at last and this method yields a nice nutty, fully cooked rice that is pure perfection!.  I added dried parsley and dried garlic for additional flavor.  I found my covered  stoneware did a fantastic job of steaming the rice in the oven, but a Pyrex dish covered in foil will do the job according to ATK.

Baked Brown Rice

adapted from The Best of America’s Test Kitchen 2009 page 78

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups brown Basmati rice
  • 2 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp dried minced garlic

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Place the Basmati rice in your stoneware (one that has a lid would be perfect).  Add 2 1/3 cups boiling water to the rice, add olive oil, salt, dried parsley and minced garlic and stir.  Cover with lid (or foil, doubled to ensure a good seal).

Bake at 375 °F for 60 minutes.  Remove from the oven, remove the lid.  Fluff the rice with a fork.  Cover the casserole with a clean kitchen towel and allow to steam for 5 minutes.  Remove the towel and allow to sit uncovered for 5 more minutes and then serve.

I will be baking my brown rice from now on! This is the way to cook it.  Thank you once again America’s Test Kitchen.

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Oven Roasted Red Potatoes

IMG_6966Here is an easy way to prepare potatoes.  It does not take very many ingredients and is very easy to prepare.

Oven Roasted Red Potatoes

by goodcookbecky

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lbs small red potatoes, washed and cut into quarters
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 425 °F.

Line a baking sheet with the quartered potatoes.  Drizzle with olive oil.  Season with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.  Toss to coat.

Bake for 25-35 minutes or until they are golden brown on the sliced edges. Just before serving, season with additional salt if needed.

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