Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for the ‘Recipes’ Category

Split-pea soup recipe

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This is an old standby, and it’s excellent — and very simple to make.

2 cups dried split peas
2 quarts water
1 cup minced celery
1 medium onion finely chopped
1/2 cup diced carrots
1 sprig parsley
1/2 teaspoon pepper
pinch of dill
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon salt

Bring water and peas to boil. Boil gently for 2 minutes, then remove from heat, cover, and let cool.

Add the remaining ingredients. Simmer 3 hours, refrigerate overnight. Heat to boil, simmer 5 minutes, serve.

Variations: use a bunch of celery, including leaves; use some thyme, cayenne; use more parsley. Also: try skipping the bay leaf — so far as I can tell, it contributes nothing. YMMV.

Written by LeisureGuy

19 February 2020 at 1:25 pm

Still learning the ins and outs of a whole-food plant-based diet

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“Live and learn” is my motto, and I’m still learning tricks for my whole-food plant-based diet. Recently I’ve been learning how best to cook beans — important since I have a serving of beans at each meal. (The next batch I’ll trying soaking in brine but cooking in plain water without the baking soda/sodium bicarbonate and compare.)

I always have a batch of cooked beans in the fridge and also — since I have a serving of grain at each meal — a batch of cooked intact whole grain — or quinoa (today) or amaranth, but usually a grain. Kamut® (khorosan wheat) is my favorite (more protein than modern wheat varieties), but I also often have hulled barley or spelt, or oat groats or farro or emmer or einkorn or red fife or… — there’s a great variety from which to choose.

And recently I’ve discovered that it’s handy to have two batches of cooked vegetables on hand:

  1. Greens: I chop some scallions (or right now spring onions, available for a few weeks in the spring) and a few cloves of garlic and cook those with three or four bunches of chopped greens, generally a mix from some of these: collards, kale, red kale, Swiss chard, red chard, spinach, chopped Brussels sprouts, dandelion greens (when available), mustard greens (never see them up here), and (rarely) beet greens. I never see turnip greens (which I would like to use). Occasionally I clean off the greens that are attached to a bunch of radish and cook those. Often I will dice a lemon and include that, or cut off the peel and blend the lemon. Sometimes I add some vinegar instead of the lemon. Sometimes I sauté in extra-virgin olive oil, sometimes in low-sodium vegetable broth. Often I include a good amount of chopped mushrooms.
  2. Vegetables: I cook a mix, always with garlic and another allium (leeks (including all the green leaves), spring onions, scallions, shallots, red onion, yellow onion). I generally include some diced root vegetables (daikon radish (high in potassium), beets, carrots), chopped asparagus (often), chopped mushrooms, diced squash (zucchini, summer squash, or delicata), chopped celery, diced eggplant (Japanese or Italian), chopped green beans, perhaps some parsley, peppers (red/yellow/orange bell pepper and/or jalapeño pepper), diced kohlrabi, chopped broccolini or baby broccoli. Often I include chopped red cabbage in this (rather than in greens), partly for the color — looks very nice with asparagus and yellow bell pepper. A diced lemon also shows up here fairly often.

Greens and vegetables are separate batches because when I cooked them as a single batch, I felt I was not getting enough greens. By having separate batches, it’s easy to take a full serving of greens.

Mushrooms appear in both dishes because they are what give me sufficient B5 —  they are high in other nutrients as well, but without them my B5 runs low (according to Cronometer.com). I always included some fresh turmeric, finely chopped, with the greens and with the vegetables, and thus also a good amount of black pepper (helps with absorption of the turmeric).

Thus a meal right now is 1/4 cup beans, 1/4 cup grain, 1/2 cup greens, 1/2 cup vegetables. In addition I check the other boxes in the Daily Dozen checklist (see bottom of this post), so for breakfast (for example) I include 1 tablespoon flax seed, ground, 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric, 2 teaspoons ground black pepper, and generally some other spice or herb: 1 teaspoon Ceylon cinnamon (never cassia cinnamon), 1 teaspoon amla powder (almost always), 2 teaspoons dried mint, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves. And for lunch or dinner I will add 1 tablespoon horseradish if I haven’t had any other cruciferous vegetable.

I eat three pieces of fruit (apples, pears, oranges, or tangerines recently, but plums, peaches, nectarines and others in season — never grapes or bananas) and a bowl of mixed berries each day. The secret to fruit is to buy a good variety and have plenty of fruit on hand — and to know how to make a fruit-fly trap. 🙂

I also eat 1/4 cup unsalted nuts (generally walnuts, sometimes mix nuts) or 1/4 cup unsalted pepitas each day, either on their own or mixed with the vegetables or greens or berries.

I’m still working to get my weight lower. When I reach ultimate goal, I’ll increase beans and grain to (say) 1/2 cup beans, 1/3 cup grain.

Written by LeisureGuy

18 February 2020 at 10:10 am

Best Beef Stroganoff recipe

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Just got a comment on this recipe, which reminded me of it.

Written by LeisureGuy

17 February 2020 at 7:46 pm

Posted in Beef, Food, Low carb, Recipes

A simple way to roast chicken

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I still would spatchcock the bird, I think. But maybe not. Check out this simple recipe: bird in cast-iron skillet, breast side up, well rubbed with kosher salt and olive oil at roasted at 325ºF for 2.5 hours. Actual recipe here. Recipe link appears at the end of ahis (somewhat lengthy) article.

Written by LeisureGuy

13 February 2020 at 5:38 pm

Posted in Food, Low carb, Recipes

Fried chicken that sounds worth trying

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Serbian ‘pahovana piletina’ leads a second, star-studded life in Barberton, Ohio. – The Akron Beacon Journal

Luke Fater writes in Gastro Obscura:

YOU CAN ONLY TRY PAHOVANA PILETINA in two places. One is Vojvodina, Serbia, where the unique style of fried chicken was born. The other is Ohio, where “Barberton-style fried chicken,” as it’s known there, became one small town’s claim to fame. What started as a comforting meal for an immigrant family came to define a community, turning a humble Ohio town into the “Fried Chicken Capital of the World.”

Smiljka and Manojlo Topalsky weren’t the only Eastern Europeans to leave home for a burgeoning Ohio farm-town called Barberton in the early 1900s. Their grandson, Milos Papich, points out that one of the oldest Serbian social clubs in the country is there, an hour south of Akron. The emigrated family owned a successful 300-acre dairy farm for decades.

During the Great Depression, though, the Topalskys lost everything but the farmhouse. Luckily, Smiljka could still cook.

On July 4th, 1933, the Topalskys opened an eatery out of that farmhouse. They called it Belgrade Gardens, and sold soups, chillis, and sandwiches to their struggling neighbors. “But it wasn’t enough to raise a family,” Papich says over the phone. One day, the story goes, Smiljka was in the back cooking a classic Serbian chicken dish for her family that she’d learned from her mother. After it caught the nose of one outspoken bank-teller, says Papich, he demanded they sell it to their regulars—a mishmash of recently immigrated Eastern Europeans who longed for a taste of home.

Once they had a taste, they couldn’t get enough. The chicken became an overnight hit among town denizens, and love of Smiljka’s fried chicken wove itself into the fabric of the community. “It kind of fell into their lap,” says Papich. “My grandparents never would have dreamed that the food they grew up with would be so well-received.”

Within seven years of putting Serbian fried chicken on their farmhouse menu, the Topalskys were able to buy back 65 acres of land from the bank, says Papich, current owner of 87-year-old Belgrade Gardens. The restaurant stayed with the family as much as pahovana piletina stays with Barberton. And to the purists in this still chicken-smitten town, Smiljka’s original dish is all but scripture.

Before explaining how to make it, Scott Marble makes one thing clear. “You need to keep it what it is,” says the owner of famed fried-chicken vendor Village Inn Chicken. “There is a recipe.” To make the dish, you . . .

Continue reading.

Written by LeisureGuy

4 February 2020 at 11:19 am

Smithey No. 8 is a perfect egg skillet

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The Smithey No. 8 cast-iron skillet is particularly nice if you have a gas range because it will heat up more quickly than it does on my electric range (particularly since the electrician told me that this apartment building has 208-volt current instead of 220 — common, he said, in apartment buildings with elevators. (?) At any rate, my electric range is slow-heating, and since a cast-iron skillet holds a lot of heat, it does take a while for this skillet to be egg-ready. I use an infra-red thermometer gun to check the temperature, and put the oil and then the eggs in which when the skillet’s center is 200ºF.

Because the skillet does hold a lot of heat, adding the eggs means that there is effectively no real change in skillet temperature, so the eggs cook well and quickly. And there is absolutely zero sticking: after I slide the eggs onto the plate, I just wipe out the skillet with a paper towel. I do flip the eggs (I make a cheese omelet), but the skillet’s weight (3 lbs) makes this a bit more effort than with the more common Teflon-lined pans.

Smithey also has a No. 10 chef cast-iron skillet with the same curving-wall treatment.

Written by LeisureGuy

3 February 2020 at 3:55 pm

Posted in Daily life, Recipes

How to chop every vegetable

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I found this video interesting, probably because nowadays I chop a lot of vegetables. One interesting note: she almost always slices vegetables on a diagonal. I don’t know why (she didn’t do it for celery for soup), but it looks cool, so I’m going to start doing it.

She does use a mandoline, but with her bare hand. I did that until I sliced the be-jesus out of my fingers. Now I always use a cut-proof glove on the hand that holds the vegetables. I strongly advise doing the same unless you have some sort of grudge against your hand.

Another disagreement: the horizontal cut for dicing onions is totally superfluous (and not to mention awkward and borderline dangerous). Cut off top and bottom and halve onion lengthwise (top to bottom). Place one half on the flat side, cut it in latitude slices (parallel to equator), hold the sliced half-onion together, then slice it in longitude slices (going through the poles). No horizontal cuts need, since the onions layers then break apart into dice.

The local library has both her cookbooks, so I’ve placed a hold on them. It will be a while: one already had 51 holds.

Written by LeisureGuy

2 February 2020 at 2:24 pm

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