Goodcookbecky's Blog

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


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Old Fashioned Potato Salad

IMG_9625There is something about the recipes of Ina Garten – when I make them it always is very good.  This Old Fashioned Potato Salad recipe is no exception to that rule. The dressing consists of mayonnaise, buttermilk, mustard, fresh dill, and other ingredients that work together in harmony with the red potatoes.  My husband thought the potatoes should be cut smaller, but it has very good flavor!  I will make this potato salad again and again.  This recipe is from her Barefoot Contessa At Home cookbook.  I made a smaller amount since it was just for my family, using 2 lbs of potatoes instead of 3.  I also reduced the amount of dressing because of that.

Old-Fashioned Potato Salad

adapted from Ina Garten Barefoot Contessa at Home (p 86)

Serves 10

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs small red potatoes
  • kosher salt
  • 2/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1.5 oz buttermilk
  • 4 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tsp whole grain mustard
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh dill
  • 1/2 cup small diced celery
  • 1/2 cup small diced red onion

Instructions:

Place the potatoes in a large pot of water and cover with cool water.  Add 2 tablespoons of kosher salt to the water and bring it to a boil.  When it comes to a full boil, reduce the heat to medium low , cover, and cook for about 12 to 15 minutes.  Drain the potatoes in a large colander.  Off heat, place the colander over your empty pot and cover the potatoes with a clean kitchen towel and steam the potatoes for 10 minutes longer.

Meanwhile prepare the dressing.  Stir together the mayonnaise and buttermilk, Dijon and whole grain mustard, dill, salt, and pepper.  Set aside.

Chop the celery and onion.

When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut them into halves and quarters (or smaller if you desire).  Place them in a large bowl.  Add the celery and onion to the potatoes and pour the dressing over the potatoes. Stir to combine the potato salad.  Taste and adjust the seasonings (salt and pepper).  Cover and refrigerate for a few hours before serving.

NOTE:

Next time I will make additional dressing to add to the potato salad, because it does absorb into the potatoes as they sit.

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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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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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Hawaiian Potato Macaroni Salad

IMG_4921On our recent trip to Maui, we were fortunate enough to go to a Luau at the Grand Wailea Resort in Wailea.  Their luau was the best we have ever attended and the food was very good.  One offering on their buffet that I was skeptical about was their potato macaroni salad (Potato Mac for short).  How can you combine macaroni salad and potato salad and get away with that!? Isn’t that a crime?  Well, as it turns out, it is NOT a crime.  It was one of the items I most enjoyed.  I skipped the poi this time, I ate it last time and was unimpressed!  Anyway… on to the good stuff:  Hawaiian Potato Mac!  I immediately went online to find a reliable recipe.  I think I found one on allrecipes.  I did not have celery seed, so I omitted it.  Also I did not need 20 servings so I cut the recipe in half, increasing the eggs to 3 and kept the macaroni at 1 cup because in the original recipe there were more potatoes than macaroni, and at the luau it was mostly macaroni.. so here is my rendition of Hawaiian Potato Mac.

Hawaiian Potato Macaroni Salad

adapted from allrecipes

Serves 10

Ingredients:

  • 3 eggs
  • 3 large russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup elbow macaroni
  • 1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup finely grated carrots
  • 1 cup green peas, cooked and drained
  • 1/2 small SWEET onion, (like Vidalia or walla walla or maui)

Instructions:

Place the eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water.  Bring them to a boil, turn off the heat, cover with a lid and allow to sit for 10-12 minutes.  Immediately after that place the eggs in ice water. This will prevent the eggs from having a green ring around the yolk.  Chop the eggs into small dice.

Cover the potatoes with cold salted water and bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce the heat to medium low to maintain a boil and cook them for about 15 minutes or until they are fork tender.  Drain them immediately and run cold water over them.  Chop the potatoes into small pieces once they are cooled.

Cook the elbow macaroni according to package directions and drain them immediately also running cold water over them to stop the cooking process.

In a medium bowl, combine the mayonnaise, red wine vinegar, curry powder, celery seed, salt, and pepper and stir to combine.  Add the finely grated carrot, cooked peas and finely minced onion to the dressing.  Gently fold the mayonnaise dressing with the chopped eggs, cooled macaroni, and cooled potatoes.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

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Chicken Breasts with Mushrooms and Cream

Part 3: Main Course:

  1. Chicken Breasts with Mushrooms and Cream Sauce (Supremes de Volaille aux Champignons- Julia Child)
  2. Buttered Green Beans I (Haricots Verts a l’ Anglaise- Julia Child)
  3. Scalloped Potatoes with Milk, Cheese, and a pinch of Garlic (Gratin Dauphinois – Julia Child)

We really liked the scalloped potatoes and buttered beans.  I have had more flavorful chicken, but it was not bad.  The sauce was good.  The recipe is pretty involved for the chicken, but it was certainly still in the good category.  Julia Child really explains her recipes well.  The steps are well spelled out.

Chicken Breasts with Mushrooms and Cream Sauce

(Supremes de Volaille aux Champignons- adapted from Julia Child – Mastering the Art of French Cooking pg 269)

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 5 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp minced shallots
  • 1/4 lb sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 6 chicken breast halves, boneless, skinless
  • 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • pinch of pepper

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • salt and pepper
  • Lemon juice as needed
  • 2 Tbsp fresh minced parsley

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 400- 425 F (I had it at 425 for the potatoes)

For the Chicken:  Heat the butter in a large skillet over moderate heat until it is foaming.  Add the minced shallot and cook for a minute or two, without browning the shallot.  Add the mushrooms and cook stirring from time to time, but not browning the mushrooms.  Season with salt.

Sprinkle the chicken breast halves with lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.  Quickly roll the chicken in the butter and mushrooms.  Butter a piece of waxed paper on one side.  Lay the paper buttered side down onto the chicken breasts.  Cover the skillet with a lid and put in the preheated oven.  After 6 minutes press your finger on the chicken breasts to test if they are done.  (If the chicken is soft to touch it still needs time to cook, if it springs back they are ready).  Remove the chicken to a warm platter and prepare the sauce.

For the sauce:  Pour the beef broth and white wine into the skillet with the mushrooms and butter.  Bring it to boil and reduce the liquid until it is syrupy.  Add the whipping cream and reduce liquid to thicken slightly.  Turn off the heat and taste adjust the seasoning with additional salt and pepper and lemon juice if desired.  Pour the sauce over the chicken and sprinkle with parsley.  Serve while hot.

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Buttered Green Beans I

(Haricots Verts a l’ Anglaise- (adapted from Julia Child Mastering the Art of French Cooking page 444)

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

3 lbs hot blanched green beans

salt and pepper, to taste

4 Tbsp butter, cut into pieces

Preparation:

Cook the green beans in a covered saucepan with 1 inch of water, and 1 tsp of salt.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cover.  Steam the green beans for about 10 minutes, or until crisp tender.  Pour off the water.  Heat the beans to evaporate the excess water.  Season with salt and pepper and toss.  Pour into a prepared serving dish.  Dot the green beans with pieces of butter.  Serve while hot.

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Scalloped Potatoes with Milk, Cheese, and a pinch of Garlic

Gratin Dauphinois – (adapted from Julia Child Mastering the Art of French Cooking page 523)

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

  • 6-7 cups Russet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/8″ slices
  • 1/2 clove garlic, cut in two
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • 4 oz grated Swiss cheese (optional, but if you do omit it increase the butter by 2 Tbsp)
  • 1 cup boiling milk

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 425 F.

Peel and slice the potatoes 1/8 inch thick.  Keep them in a bowl of water until you need them to prevent browning.  Drain and dry on paper towels when ready to use.

Rub the bottom and sides of the baking dish with the slices of garlic to give it a little flavor.  Coat the baking dish with butter.  Place 1/2 of the sliced potatoes in a neat layer along the bottom of the baking dish.  Season with salt and pepper, sprinkle with 1/2 of the cheese and dot with half the butter.  Repeat with a layer of potatoes, season, sprinkle with cheese and butter.  Pour the boiling milk over the potatoes and bake at 425F for 20-30 minutes.  If they are just underdone, cover with foil and allow them to sit for about 10 minutes while you finish other parts of your meal – or bake them another 5 minutes.

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Tangled Menu: Part One

In celebration of the movie, “Tangled” being released to DVD I created a Tangled inspired menu.

What tie does this have to the movie? If you saw the movie you may remember that a skillet was used as a weapon.  This dinner was prepared in a skillet.

I seasoned boneless skinless chicken breast halves with salt and pepper and browned them in a hot skillet in olive oil until they were golden brown on both sides.  I then transferred them to a baking dish to complete cooking in a preheated oven at 350F  for about 20-25 minutes.

Meanwhile, I brought a large pot of water to  a boil and cooked baby dutch potatoes until fork tender (about 10-15 minutes).  I drained the potatoes and reheated the skillet that I had seared my chicken in.  I added 2 Tablespoons of olive oil to the hot skillet and fried the potatoes until they were slightly browned.  I seasoned with ground sea salt and pepper and to finish them, sprinkled parsley flakes on them.

After the potatoes were done and the chicken was fully cooked.  I pushed the potatoes to one side and placed the chicken in the skillet and served it in the skillet.

The kids loved the connection to the movie.

Part 2: Hazelnut Parsnip Soup … coming soon to a blog near you (this one).


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French Fries

French fries come in the frozen section of the grocery store right?  You put them in the oven and bake them, .. at least that has been the case for me, if I even make them at all.  In an attempt to find something really cheap to make so I can blog about it, I tried the recipe that is in America’s Test Kitchen TV Cookbook (2001-2010) LINK.  They recently showed on their program a method of frying french fries that starts with the potatoes in cold peanut oil.  I was skeptical, that they fries would become really soggy. I have to say it was not a perfect first attempt, but they were yummy in the end.  It took longer for my fries to get crisp than they said it would, and I had some stick to the bottom that did not want to budge, but it’s okay — they stayed at the bottom when I went to scoop them out with my spider and did not affect that lot.  I did have to cook them longer than the recipe said, but they were good in the end.. so be patient if they don’t seem crisp to you.  I drained the fries on a baking pan lined with paper towels, sprinkled the hot fries with salt for the family and garlic powder with some parsley for hubby and I because we LOVE garlic!

The recipe works this way: you use Yukon Gold Potatoes — mine were on the small side, so they were not very long, but they were good: crisp on the outside and soft and velvety in the inside.  The recipe in the cookbook calls for 1/4 cup strained bacon fat in the oil to give it extra flavor, but I didn’t use any because for once I didn’t have any on hand!  Shocker, I know!  Cut the edges of the potato to give it a flat side on all four sides (and extra balance when you slice them) and slice them first in 1/4 slices and then 1/4 inch sticks.

Easier French Fries

adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes (about 6 medium), scrubbed, dried, sides squared off and cut lengthwise in 1/4″ slices and then 1/4 inch sticks
  • 6 cubs peanut oil
  • Salt
  • Garlic powder, optional

Preparation:

Place the sliced potato batons and the peanut oil in a heavy duty dutch oven (I like to use my 6 1/2 quart Le Creuset- an enameled cast iron skillet).

Bring the oil and french fries to a full boil over high heat.  Once the oil is boiling set the timer for 15 minutes.  Do NOT disturb the fries those 15 minutes- keep the temperature at high during the boiling, but do monitor to make sure it does not spill out!

After 15 minutes use a long pair of tongs to gently stir the bottom of the pot to loosen any that get stuck to the bottom (I still had a few that did not want to un-stick, but it turned out okay)

Continue cooking over high heat for 10 minutes or longer, stirring occasionally with tongs, until they are golden brown and crisp.  Remove them with a slotted spoon or a spider if you have one (a metal net like looking thing).  Drain the french fries on a paper towel lined baking sheet.  Immediately, sprinkle with salt and garlic powder if desired. Serve with Ketchup or a dipping sauce.

Enjoy

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