Monday, September 24, 2007
Fun Monday - Yum!
Lisa at the Food Snob is hosting Fun Monday this week. And of course, being a "food snob", she wants to know about food!
I want to see your favorite recipe, be it either because your grandmother wrote it, it's the easiest thing you can slap together that everyone likes, it makes you feel healthy, it's cheap, etc. You don't have to make it (although you could if you want) but let us see the index card, cookbook, printed paper from the web, and why it's a favorite in your house. If you have a lot, just pick one, I know I'll have to!
Oh, boy. I cannot say that I'm a great cook. Things just don't occur to me the way they do to my husband. He can take a kitchen full of nothing and come up with something delicious. ME? I need a little help.
This has been obvious from the early days of my culinary experimentation. Especially since I apparently had an aversion to actually reading directions. I have no idea how many flat cakes, hocky puck muffins or overcooked pieces of leather my parents and brothers had to endure, but if I was cooking, you can bet that it was more than a few.
I sincerely believe that it was self-defense when my mother put together a recipe box for me at a very young age. I've had this box (and most of the contents) for 30+ years now, and visiting ancient history never tasted better.
But because of our recent move, I first had to go on a treasure hunt - into the garage. I know I saw it in here somewhere....
Aha! Just move that Jango helmet and whatever this thing is... Yup! right next to the Gray's Anatomy - right where it belongs (right?).
Wow - I remember when my mom did this. She was an artsy lady. Now, hmmmm.... my favorite? Nope. Nope.
Ah! Here it is!
Aunt Jill's Macaroni and Cheese. Of course, when I was little, I hated it. She makes it with tomato sauce and EVERYONE knows that there's no tomato sauce in Mac & Cheese (just like there's no crying in baseball!). But I got the recipe anyway and a couple of years ago (after the last move), I tried making it again. ZBoy and Darling Man LOVED it! I loved it! So now, I'm going to share it with you.
AUNT JILL'S MACARONI AND CHEESE
3 cups of cooked macaroni (drained)
1 1/2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1 cup ricotta or cottage cheese
1/2 teaspoon sald
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 8-oz can of tomato sauce
Put 1/2 of the macaroni in a 1 1/2 qt. casserole. Combine cheeses, mil and salt - pour 1/2 over macaroni. Sprinkle on 1/2 onions. Pour on 1/2 tomato sauce. Repeat. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. (Of course, I sprinkle on some extra cheddar on top).
You can make the full-fat version, or go all health-nutty and use whole wheat pasta and fat-free everything else these days (they didn't used to HAVE fat-free stuff when I was a kid), and lower the caloric hit considerably, but it's actually really good both ways.
Then I found this...
It's my grandmother's recipe for Scalloped Potatoes. It was actually published in a cookbook once and I love it because it's so easy - at age 10, I could turn out good scalloped potatoes!
GRANDMA'S SCALLOPED POTATOES
6 potatoes (peeled if you want)
Slice potatoes thinly. Butter baking dish. Layer potatoes, flour, butter. Add milk until you can barely see it. Bake until top is browned, (350 oven) about an hour.
Okay... now that I type it out, I can see that a little explanation is needed, since you never actually SAW Grandma make this. Butter your dish, and make a layer of sliced potatoes. Then DOT butter around on top of the potatoes. This means just a little tiny bit of butter, not great globs. Then pick up your sifter, which is already loaded with flour, and sift a light layer of flour on top of that. Keep building your layers this way until you're almost to the top of the baking dish. Then pour in the milk until you just barely see it peeping up the side of the potatoes. There are no measurements really, because you can make as much or as little as you need. In fact, I might make this for the "Holiday Luncheon" they have at work around Thanksgiving...
So, okay, Lisa - you got me to go back into history for this one!