Return of the "Cook"!

Hello my blog friends, I have not stopped “cooking” but I did take a hiatus from blogging. I’ve missed sharing my latest triumphs along with my epic concoctions that have gone horribly awry (but I still eat or drink because I refused to throw away food… or money!)

So why not return on Thanksgiving — when the nation turns to food. Much gratitude this year for continuing this cooking adventure. Today I’m going to post one of my favorite breakfasts. Simple. Pretty. Healthy. And the place just makes me happy: hardboiled egg, bright green, nicely ripe avocado, fresh raspberries. A good amount of cayenne pepper over the egg — maybe a few drops of extra virgin olive oil and voila! Yum.

Coming soon… Bronx run for the best chicken cutlets in the town.

IMG_6309.jpg

Simple cooking

A go-to staple of yum. Chopped chicken breast, sautéed in extra virgin olive oil, with white onions, garlic, salt and pepper. I don't overcook the onions so they are still crunchy, then add spinach, sundries tomatoes. I save the best for last: a generous amount of capers to give each bite a bold taste.

IMG_5329.jpg

Pork-tastrophe

In a word. No. I do not know how to cook pork. Four tries. Four failures. It started after a multi-day search looking for a simple recipe to cook super-lean pork chops (2 on bone, 2 without) from my favorite (and only) Butcher... (stay tuned for road trip to my Bronx Butcher).

So i picked out a recipe, got all the ingredients, had the prep time and began. Half-way though, the recipe said to use a "rack" of some sorts for the oven. A "rack"??? why would I need a rack? Well, because I had googled the wrong recipe. This was for a pork tenderloin, not chop. Awesome. So, I tried to recover and quickly look for a recipe to cook on stove top. The key i kept seeing was the temperature... apparently 165 degrees??? Well, the one good note was that it gave me time to test out a new tool -- my handy thermometer that I got from my cooking school (a blog for another time) after I dropped out after one day. 

I cooked, I "seared"... well, maybe not. I watched videos to see if i was cooking it right... uh! And after cooking it longer than it should have been on the stove, the thermometer only reached 145 degrees! However, in my "professional" opinion, it was clearly overcooked. Dilemma... to eat and risk getting sick or waste the food and money. Well, the dodo ate it. I'm still hear to tell the tale! But wow, pork will not be on the menu (or the blog for some time). I do not accept defeat! ... (just a temporary surrender)

IMG_5415.jpg

And... goodnight

Simple works. A nurse suggested I try this recipe at home to soothe my stomach and help me sleep. I make it a few times a week: Heat one glass of almond or coconut milk on the stove top. I try to be patient and leave it on low and just let it gently warm. It may take a good 15 minutes or more. Then grab your favorite mug, add about tsp of turmeric. Some nights, adding a splash of cinnamon hits the spot.

IMG_5553.JPG

Warm in the Belly

I love this mishmash "recipe": 

Store bought organic red pepper and tomato (low sodium) soup as the base. I let it simmer in a Dutch Oven on stove top for about 20 minutes on medium, as I assemble the rest:

Cook Prep: For one person, I make 1/2 cup of yellow couscous and steam cauliflower. Then chop up leftover chicken breast and sauce for about 10 minutes on low in extra virgin olive oil, adding diced clove of garlic, salt and pepper; then add small spinach leaves for about a minute to soften and warm.

Once the soup is warmed, I add the ingredients to the Dutch Oven soup base: All the cooked prep, plus half-inch pieces of scallions (personal choice of size), a few sprigs of parsley, about 7-8 yellow raisins, and tablespoon of coconut flakes. 

Stirring gently, I cover the pot, and turn the heat to low. I let it warm for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to let all the flavors soak in. Soooooo good!

 

IMG_5384.jpg