My first blog post, so lets start with setting the agenda: to keep an accurate record of the food I create. I'm hesitant to call them recipes because I don't actually measure things and cooking is usually more like a running experiment. I should warn you all that I LOATH grocery shopping with every fiber of my being, and reading that it doesn't seem to be a strong enough statement to express it fully, so, as it gets closer to shopping day (I try to do major shopping just once every 4-6 weeks with odds and ends being picked up as needed) the more erratic the ingredients being used. I shall also try to remember to take pictures of the dishes I describe, I have 4 kids (ages 9yr daughter, 7yr son, 3yr son and 10mo daughter) a dog, and a Husband in the Air Force, so I might forget entirely or only remember this part of the goal half way thru.
I cook mostly from scratch (my kids will not for the life of me eat home made mac and cheese) and try to only use frozen or fresh vegetables/produce, we make most of our bread (it's not hard) and I also use things like butter, cream and bacon (and the drippings there of). The only way this would be "diet" food is if you ate child size portions, but I promise it will be varied, wholesome, and tasty (this part is a crap shoot sometimes) . We also eat what's been given to us or go without, not to say that they have to like it and I encourage them to let me know when they don't, we should still be grateful for both the time it took us to prepare the food and the fact that we have food. When possible I try to have the older kids help, they do things like stir, measure, pour, open things, add amounts if I'm doubling things (when I bake I try to measure things out).
All this isn't to say that we don't eat out, we do (prolly too much), and I really do try resisting the urge to "fix" food when we do (this is usually averted by just eating out in "town", since I can't fix Japanese cuisine). And I'm no chef (I didn't take home ec. in school) I learned how to cook the old fashioned way ( I watched my parents do it, and when I was tall enough to reach things I took over) I've also learned a lot from my husbands mother (the most patient person I've known and a pretty dang good baker) and grandmother (when ever I get homesick and miss Grandma I watch Paula Dean, she comes close to Grandma).
Mostly I try to put a twist on things and make them my own. Or if it's something simple that we just enjoy eating out I try my best to duplicate it to save on $$$. So, enough about me, on with the food!
tonight we had Taco Rice (as legend goes this was invented out of necessity at one of the U.S. military bases here on Okinawa )
(the title is pretty self-explanatory, you make taco fixings like normal but instead of tortillas you put it on rice.)
This will feed my family with enough for one adult lunch left over (which is usually DH's lunch at work the next day)
3 scoops of rice in the rice cooker and water to the 3 line
10 small hand scoops of pinto beans in the crock pot with half a gallon of water , cook on high for 4ish hours, mash gently and add salt and "ham flavor" (didn't have any bacon drippings to add, and this stuff makes it taste like I cooked it with ham hocks) (you can find it in the Hispanic section of the store it's by GOYA and is in a little box printed to look like wood grain and a pig outline on it)
2 lbs 97% lean ground beef with 2 packs of Taco Seasoning
6 handfuls shredded (or VERY chopped) cabbage/lettuce
1/3-1/2 of 1lb block shredded cheese (I think today we used Cheddar, but it's usually just whatever knob of cheese that's in the fridge)
1 can Stewed Tomatoes with Bell Peppers add equal parts, onion powder, garlic powder, Grill mates Gourmet Burger seasoning, twice that parsley, and 2 GENTLE shakes cayenne Pepper, and 2 good size pinches of Kosher salt. blend to consistency of your liking.
sour cream to garnish
now layer in a bowl, rice, beans, meat, lettuce, cheese, salsa, sour cream. ENJOY
We like this for several reasons, it's tasty, it's easier to eat than a regular taco, and more filing, and I always have rice on hand and rarely tortillas. Sorry there are no pics tonight I wasn't struck with the urge (tho I've been toying with this idea for some time) to do this until dinner was done, eaten and leftovers put away.
ok..One down, I'll try to remember this exists so I can recall things we enjoyed more easily and maybe just maybe help someone not be afraid of cooking, cause it's not rocket science you will not blow anyone/thing up (unless there's a pressure cooker involved, and I'll walk you thru that too), worst case scenario, PB&J or cereal for supper (which always makes them secretly smile on the inside).