Sunday, January 9, 2011

Chicken Stock

I've been meaning to make stock forever.  I even had a chicken carcass in my freezer for several months, but it somehow got lost in the move...go figure.  Anyways, I finally stopped reading about how to make stock and just went ahead and did it.  Since I was carcass-less, I had to go buy a bird.  All I could get on short notice was a 7lb stewing hen.  After I started roasting it last night, I did a quick google search and found that hens are mature birds and can be a bit tough.  That's why they are sold as "for soup".  Lesson learned.  Jason picked most of the meat off, and then this morning I used the carcass to make the stock.  I let it simmer for about 8 hours.  I didn't add much additional water, and, after making soup, I have about 28 oz of broth left to freeze.  Next time, I will probably buy a stewing hen and just put it in the pot raw and pick the meat afterwards.

Chicken Stock

1 chicken carcass
2-3 carrots, coarsely chopped
1-2 onions, coarsely chopped
2-3 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
2 T apple cider vinegar
handful parsley

1) Put chicken, carrots, onion and celery in a large pot; cover with water and add vinegar.
2) Let sit for 30-60 mins.
3) Bring to a boil and skim off any scum that floats to the surface.
4) Cover and simmer 4-24 hours.
5) Add parsley 10 mins before you plan to turn off the heat.
6) Remove bones and any large bits; strain into jars.
7) Let cool and refrigerate or freeze.  If freezing, don't forget to leave head room in the jars.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Mama B's Corn Casserole

The original recipe called for a can of creamed corn and a small box of jiffy.  Because I like to be difficult and make things from scratch, I instead made homemade creamed corn and used the dry ingredients from my favorite cornbread recipe.  I also baked it for over an hour in a deep 8x8 casserole dish.  My version wasn't quite as moist as the original, so I think I may have overbaked it.  Next time, I'll try the 9x13 as noted below.

Corn Casserole

1/2 c butter, melted
1 batch of homemade creamed corn
10 oz frozen corn
1/2 c cornmeal
2/3 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 T sugar
3 eggs
1 c sour cream
1 c shredded cheddar cheese

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2) Mix all ingredients well.
3) Transfer to 9x13 pan and bake for 45 mins.

Creamed Corn

This creamed corn has a nice slightly sweet flavor.  I can't wait to try it with fresh corn this summer.

Creamed Corn

10 oz frozen corn
1/2 c heavy cream
1/2 tsp salt
1 T sugar
1/8 tsp black pepper
1 T butter
1/2 c whole milk
1 T flour
2 T grated parmesan (optional)

1) In a skillet over medium heat, combine the corn, cream, salt, sugar, pepper and butter.
2) Once the corn is thawed, whisk together milk and flour and add to the mixture.
3) Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture is thickened and the corn is cooked through.
4) Remove from heat; add parmesan.

Egg Rolls

This is a great recipe that we don't make very often.  Besides not being very healthy, deep frying is a major hassle.  That said, every once in a while, it is totally worth it, and we decided to celebrate NYE 2010 with some greasy goodness.  This recipe yielded about 18 egg rolls.  To reheat, just broil for a few minutes.

Egg Rolls

6 c coarsely chopped cabbage
1 carrot, shredded
1/2 c bean sprouts
2 T chopped onion
4 oz chopped shrimp or cooked ground beef/turkey (optional)
2 T soy sauce
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 egg
egg roll wrappers
oil (for frying)

1) In a large bowl, mix together cabbage, carrot, bean sprouts, onion, meat, soy sauce, garlic powder and black pepper.
2) In a skillet, cook the egg flat and thin (break the yolk); finely chop the egg and add it to the bowl.  
3) Sprinkle top of mixture with cornstarch; mix and let sit for 10 mins.
4) In a small dish, combine 1 T cornstarch with 2 T water.
5) Place a egg roll wrapper in front of you on an angle (so it looks like a diamond instead of a square).
6) Place 2 heaping T of filling in the center of the wrapper.
7) Using a spoon, put a tiny dab of cornstarch water on the three corners furthest from you; use the back of the spoon to spread the water around the top two edges.
8) Fold the corner closest to you over the mixture tightly; fold the two side corners inward; finish rolling, ensuring a good seal.
9) Repeat for remainder of egg rolls.
10) In the meantime, heat 3-4 inches of oil to 350 degrees.
11) Fry egg rolls until golden brown; drain on paper towels.
12) Serve with duck sauce.