I have already stated that for me lunch is a simple thing. Breakfast is usually yogurt and fruit. Supper is where I play with food. Since my wife is at our daughters 4 days a week lunch isn’t important to me. So since I am by myself I am very lazy with my lunch. A big bowl of cereal is me being super lazy, which is about a couple of times a week. Today I am not that lazy. Since I have leftover ham, it’s a toasted ham sandwich. Nice part is I really like a good ham sandwich. Deli ham I rate as ok, leftover roasted ham I rate as great. Being lazy I am not even putting cheese in it. Just having thin sliced ham and mustard. Thought of making something a little more creative but the lazy got the best of me. A simple sandwich means less clean up also. It was a very good sandwich and I totally enjoyed it.
The mac & cheese I grew up eating isn’t the creamy bread crumb style that you normally see. There is nothing wrong with that mac & cheese. I have had it in restaurants and where they made it adding other things. I have enjoyed them all. Only thing I didn’t like was the ones that had the bread crumbs on top. I understand that they want to add something crunchy and the crumbs add it. To me it is just something that doesn’t enhance the flavour. At home I make my mothers mac & cheese. The crunchy for it comes from the cheese edges that are created in the casserole dish. It is really different from the creamy ones and my wife and I like it better, so do our kids. Nice part is, it’s a lot easier. I don’t remember ever having creamy mac & cheese until I had my first box of Kraft dinner mac & cheese. Macaroni was common when I was growing up whether with cheese or tomatoes. Spaghetti was something that was rare and was a treat for me. Never asked if my 5 brothers and my sister considered spaghetti a treat like I did. But my mothers mac & cheese is still my favourite pasta dish. Well maybe second, to tell the truth I have a love affair with fettuccine Alfredo.
5 cups of elbow macaroni that has been cooked for 5 minutes and rinsed under cold water till it is cold.
4 cups of grated old cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste
1 large buttered casserole dish
Salt and pepper the pasta before using. Put 1/3 rd of the pasta in the dish and spread to an even layer then add 1/3 rd of the cheese and spread evenly, repeat with the rest of the macaroni and cheese in thirds. This gives 3 layer of macaroni and cheese. Doing it this way allows the cheese to melt evenly coating the macaroni. Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 50 minutes. Turn the broiler on for the last 3 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes before serving. The cheese on the top will be crispy and the macaroni and cheese on the sides and bottom of the casserole will be crisp.
Today I meet my son for lunch, which is something I don’t get to do enough of. It was a good break and I thought it would get me out of the journey down food memory lane. Don’t know actually got me thinking so much about food I ate in my youth, but something did. Been kind of fun, but I think it’s time to stop. So lunch with my son and talking about hockey and other things was a good idea. It was a great lunch at a new place for us to meet. I always have a great time having lunch with my, and today was time well spent. So we met at a little chinese restaurant in Headingley. Lunch was the Tuesday special, chicken balls, fried rice, and chop suey. Now I hadn’t had chop suey in about 20 years, because I got to the point of not liking it. Not because it tasted bad, because it wasn’t what I grew up eating. So when lunch arrived I got a surprise, it tasted just like what I grew up eating. It even had the green cabbage in it. Then the fried rice and it tasted the same. Chicken balls were really good, chunks of chicken breast coated and deep fried with just the right amount of sauce. Chicken balls aren’t a memory from my youth and not something I normally order. These I would order, the ones made with ground chicken I wouldn’t. Sitting there eating this chinese food and sharing the memory of the Rex Cafe with my son made the lunch just a little more special for me. I need a few more lunches like todays.
It’s been a very good fall for me, this is the fourth time I get to have my favourite meal, ham and scallop potatoes. I got lucky and found hams on sale for 91 cents a pound. When you find them that cheap it’s a no brainer, you buy one. Only bad part is hams don’t freeze well or I would of bought more. I froze a ham along time ago and when I thawed it out and cooked it wasn’t happy, it was mealy and watery. Thankfully I often find hams for a really good price, 91 cents is a new low. Spent just over 8 dollars and should get 5 meals and some great lunches. All ready been thinking of some things I can do for different lunches. Will have fun try some different things that may get added to my Christmas breakfast list.
We had a busy afternoon today so needed something simple for supper. A stir fry is always a good choice for something quick. 20 minutes of prep and 10 minutes to cook, what could be quicker or easier to make. Since I knew it was going to be a busy afternoon I picked up a couple of things I needed. When we got home I prepped everything. Since my wife doesn’t like bamboo shoots I used the broccoli stem and cut it to look like bamboo shoots. Simplest is always the stir frying part.
1 chicken breast cut into strips
3 cloves garlic minced
1 teaspoon grated ginger root
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon corn starch
1/2 teaspoon sherry
1 teaspoon canola oil
Mix the garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sherry, oil, and corn starch in a small bowl. Add the chicken, mix well and set to marinate for 1 hour.
1 small head broccoli separated
broccoli stem peeled and cut in disks
2 ribs bok choy leaves removed and chopped
cut the leaves into ribbons
1 carrot chopped
1/3 of a red pepper cut into sticks
2 teaspoons canola oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons water
Heat a frying pan on high heat, add 1 teaspoon oil. When oil starts to smoke add carrots, stir fry for 1 minute. Next come the bok choy ribs, stir fry for 1 minute. Add bok choy leaves, broccoli, red pepper, salt and pepper,stir fry for 2 minutes. Remove from pan and hold. Return pan to heat with 1 teaspoon oil, when oil starts to smoke add the chicken. Stir fry for 2 minutes then add the vegetables back. Add 2 tablespoons water, stir fry for 2 minutes and serve.
The hockey game is starting on tv at 3 this afternoon, and I try to watch as many of the games as I can. When the Jets games start late I do pvr them. So the question became what do I make for supper and still be able to watch the game. Answer became, make stew. So as soon as I finished lunch I went to the store. I found Angus beef stew meat on sale so that’s what I made. This is a little different than the last beef stew I made. The nice thing about stew is you can make it in little different ways and that way it never gets boring. Boring is something you never want your meals to be. There isn’t anything majorly different with it, just a few little things.
1 lb of stew meat
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon paprika
2 bay leaves
2 cups beef broth
2 cups diced tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
2 tennis ball sized onions quartered
2 carrots chopped in large pieces
2 ribs celery chopped in large pieces
1 small turnip cut in large pieces
Sprinkle a cutting board with 1 tablespoon flour and the salt and pepper and toss the stew meat in it. You want the stew meat to clean the board. Preheat a pot on medium high heat, add olive oil and stir meat. Brown the meat heavily then add 1 tablespoon butter. When the butter has melted add 1 tablespoon flour and mix in and cook for 1 minute. Add the beef broth and bring to a boil stirring continually. Reduce heat to simmer. Add bay leaf, thyme, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, garlic powder, and mix well. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Next add the tomatoes and all the vegetables. Mix in, cover and simmer for 2 hours stirring occasionally. Serve with mashed potatoes or even just bread.
I kind of got out of my lazy mood. Well maybe it’s a little more I got forced out of it. Realized I didn’t have any frozen hash browns, so I had to make something. Easiest solution was to make home fries. Have never figured out why they’re called home fries. Usually they are made from leftover baked potatoes that are chopped into chunks and fried. I guess home fries is as good as anything. Since I didn’t have leftover baked potatoes I just microwaved a few potatoes. It seemed the simplest thing to do. Had a green onion in the fridge so that got chopped too. A little more work than I wanted to do, but the outcome is better for it.
3 microwaved potatoes that have been cooled and chopped
1 chopped green onion
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons butter
salt and pepper to taste
Melt butter in a preheated frying pan on medium high heat. Add potatoes and mix well to coat with butter. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and garlic powder. Stir every couple of minutes browning well. It will take only about 10 minutes since the potatoes are cooked already. Add the green onions for the last 2 minutes of cooking. They can be served with all kinds of different things.