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Volume 18   Number 27

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No. 22    No. 23    No. 24    No. 25    No. 26


  THIS WEEK'S FEATURES AND RECIPES:

   > Article: Clambake Without The Sand

   > Food Funnies: Signs You’ve Cut Back Too Far on Your Food Budget

       S E L E C T E D    R E C I P E S :

    * Applebee's Classic Patty Melt

    * Tequila Marinated Spareribs

    * Grilled BBQ Bacon Shrimp

    * Moussaka

    * Curried Chicken Salad

    * Old-Fashioned Baked Beans

    * Grilled White-and-Sweet-Potato Salad
        
    * Flag Cake

     Healthy Eating:

    Low Carb: Molded Cherry Coke Salad

    Diabetic: Fruit Roll Cookies

    Low Fat: Chicken Stroganoff

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  This Week's Cooking Tips

 * When a recipe calls for adding oil, garlic, and onions to a pan,
   always add garlic last. This keeps it from burning and tasting
   bitter. 

 * Make your own celery flakes. Just cut and wash the leaves from the
   celery stalks; place them in the oven on low heat or in the hot
   sun until thoroughly dry. Crumble and store in an air-tight
   container. 

 * Put sliced cucumbers, onions, carrots and/or pieces of cauliflower
   in leftover pickle juice and in a couple of days they will be
   pickled. 

 * Don't discard the water in which the vegetables are soaked or
   cooked. It is more flavorful than plain water so use it in making
   soup or gravy.

 * If you are baking and out of eggs, substitute 1/4 cup applesauce
   for 1 egg. More Cooking Tips

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  This Week's Culinary Quiz (Answer at the bottom of page)

    Indian curries go well with saffron rice, or a large flatbread
   called naan. How is naan usually cooked? 

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   Quote of the Week:

     "You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces -
      just good food from fresh ingredients."

      - Julia Child

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    UPCOMING FOOD HOLIDAYS:

           July is: National Ice Cream Month
                    National Picnic Month
                    National Baked Bean Month
                    National Hot Dog Month
                    National Pickle Month

            July 3 - National Chocolate Wafer Day
            July 4 - National Barbecued Spareribs Day 
            July 5 - National Apple Turnover Day 
            July 6 - National Fried Chicken Day 
            July 7 - National Strawberry Sundae Day 
            July 8 - National Milk Chocolate with Almonds Day 
            July 9 - National Sugar Cookie Day 
            July 10 - National Pina Colado Day 

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    Clambake Without The Sand
     By Mark Bittman

  This is a kind of portable clambake, a dead-easy system for cooking
 shellfish on the grill or, when the weather cools off, in the oven.
 It is based on the classic method of cooking en papillote (in
 packages but with aluminum foil, instead of parchment paper), the
 packages can be placed directly on the grill. And with Asian
 seasonings, they become slightly exotic and really delicious.

  Perhaps best of all, this technique can help those who have a phobia
 about grilling fish. There are no sticking or turning issues, and
 even judging doneness can be forgotten. The packages are done 10
 minutes after they have been put on a hot covered grill. But if you
 still need reassurance, just cook them longer: there is so much juice
 in the shellfish that there is no chance that they will dry out or be
 overdone. This is the flexibility of steaming without the hassle, and
 with an impressive, lovely presentation.

  Pile the ingredients into a double layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil
 and wrap them up tightly. As long as the sheets of foil are big
 enough, this is not a problem. Apply sufficient heat, via grill or
 oven, and you're done. The shellfish provide enough juice to moisten
 a big bed of rice. Add a salad, and you have a meal.

  I like to add linguiça sausage, but you could also use the softer
 chorizo, the more garlicky kielbasa, hot or sweet Italian sausage or
 even Chinese sausage. Although mussels, clams and shrimp are an
 obvious and traditional combination, scallops, lobster claws or
 tails, or pieces of fish are all great. If you include fish, use red
 snapper, monkfish, sea bass, striped bass or another sturdy variety,
 because they won't fall apart when they are cooked through, as would
 sole, cod and other more delicate fish.

  About the seasonings: I like to keep them fresh, so wait until the
 end of cooking to use some of the lime and all the soy sauce, which
 loses its delicacy when cooked. If you want to head in another
 direction, substitute shallots for the ginger, lemon juice (or a
 little vinegar) for the lime and some combination of parsley, basil,
 thyme or rosemary for the herbs. Presto: Provence!

  Shellfish in Packages
  =================
    2 pounds mussels, thoroughly cleaned and washed 
    2 pounds littleneck or mahogany clams, washed 
    16 large shrimp, peeled (and deveined if you prefer) 
    1 pound linguiça or any other sausage, cut into chunks, optional 
    2 tablespoons peeled and minced ginger 
    1 tablespoon minced garlic 
    1 lime, cut into eighths 
    1/4 cup each sprigs of cilantro, basil and mint 
    4 teaspoons soy sauce

 1. Start a charcoal or gas grill that has a cover. The fire can be
    quite hot, but it need not be long-lived. Or put a roasting pan
    in the oven, and heat to 450 degrees.

 2. Tear eight sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil, about one foot by
    one and a half feet each. Make 4 stacks of foil, each of two
    sheets. On the foil, pile 1/4 each of the mussels, clams, shrimp,
    sausage, ginger and garlic. Squeeze one piece of lime over each
    pile (reserve 4 pieces), and top with herbs. Close packages
    tightly in any fashion you like. Put them on grill, and close top,
    or put them in roasting pan in oven. Cook for about 10 minutes.

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  THE E-COOKBOOKS LIBRARY - 
                                ALL YOU NEED TO COOK IT RIGHT!

     Discover our very special collection of over
     100 cookbooks filled with world class recipes ...

          Find Out About The E-Cookbooks Library

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  FOOD FUNNIES: Signs You’ve Cut Back Too Far on Your Food Budget

 9. "Leftovers" consist of whatever you retrieve when flossing.

 8. There are lost pet notices tacked to every power pole on
    your street.

 7. For dessert, you have the kids lick mint-flavored stamps.

 6. You can call it "Dandelion Salad" all day long, but that
    doesn’t change the fact that it’s just lawn clippings.

 5. Your kids pine for the good old days when they got brussel
    sprouts and fried liver for dinner.

 4. You made do with a can of hash and a banana for a dinner
    party, breakfast, church pot luck and class cupcake day.

 3. Your food pyramid is now one-story.

 2. You spend more on gasoline every month than you do food -
    but you don’t own a car.

  ... and the #1 Sign You’ve Cut Back Too Far on Your Food Budget ...

 1. "It’s not like you kids played with the gerbils. Now shut up
    and eat your 'Cornish game hen'."

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  Applebee's Classic Patty Melt
  =======================
    1 burger patty
    Salt, pepper, granulated garlic, to taste
    Melted butter, as needed
    2 pieces Italian bread
    2 tablespoons mayonnaise with roasted garlic and mustard
    2 slices Swiss cheese
    2 slices Cheddar cheese
    1/2 cup sliced onions

  Season one side of the burger with salt, pepper and garlic. Place on
 grill or in broiler, seasoned side down. Then season the other side.
 Cook to desired doneness.

  While burger is cooking, melt butter in fry pan on medium heat or in
 electric skillet (set at 350F). Spread mayonnaise onto bread. Drop
 bread, dry side down, onto melted pools and swirl to coat (to avoid
 sticking).

  Cover one slice of bread with two slices of Swiss cheese and the
 other with two slices of Cheddar.

  In a separate frying pan, melt butter and saute sliced onions.
 Season with salt, pepper and garlic while heating.

  Place cooked burger patty on top of one cheese-topped slice of bread
 and the sauteed onions on the other. Carefully close and cut
 sandwich. Serve with your favorite summer side dish.

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  Tequila Marinated Spareribs
  ======================
    1 rack of pork spareribs (about 3 pounds)
    Salt
    Freshly-ground black pepper
    1 cup olive oil
    Juice from 4 limes
    1/2 cup gold tequila
    1 onion, finely chopped
    2 tablespoons minced garlic
    2 medium jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
    2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves

  Season the ribs with salt and pepper. In a small mixing bowl, whisk
 the oil, lime juice, tequila, onions, garlic, jalapenos, and
 cilantro. Season with more salt and pepper. Place the ribs, meat side
 down, in a glass baking dish. Pour the marinade over the ribs,
 coating each side completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate
 overnight (at least 12 hours), turning every couple of hours.

  Remove from the refrigerator and bring the ribs to room temperature.
 Preheat the grill on low. Place the ribs, meat side down, and grill
 them, turning and basting every 15 minutes. Cook for about 1 1/2 to
 2 hours, or until the ribs are tender. Remove from the grill and
 slice into individual ribs.

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  Grilled BBQ Bacon Shrimp
  =====================
    16 (10-inch) wooden skewers 
    2 tablespoons butter 
    1/2 cup finely chopped onions 
    1 small jalapeno, seeded and chopped 
    1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper 
    1 (1-inch) piece ginger, grated 
    1/2 cup dark brown sugar 
    1/4 cup orange juice 
    1 cup ketchup 
    16 colossal shrimp, shelled with tail on, deveined (about 1 1/4 lbs) 
    4 slices bacon 

  Preheat grill to medium. Soak skewers in water while preparing the
 BBQ sauce. In a medium saucepan melt butter and saute onions and
 jalapeno, until tender. Season with cayenne, and salt and pepper. Add
 ginger, brown sugar, orange juice and ketchup in that order making
 sure to blend each ingredient completely before adding the next
 ingredient. Let simmer until the edges begin to caramelize, about
 15 minutes. Set aside and let cool. Once cool, remove half of the
 sauce and reserve for dipping. The other half is for brushing on the
 shrimp when grilling. Cut bacon in thirds. Thread each shrimp onto a
 skewer, starting from the tail end. Bend the shrimp as you thread it
 so it lies in 1 straight line on the skewer, removing its natural
 curve. Wrap the center of each shrimp with a piece of bacon. Brush
 with BBQ sauce and place skewers with bacon, seam side down, onto the
 grill. Cook over medium heat until bacon crisps and shrimp is cooked
 through, about 8 minutes.

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  Moussaka
  ========
    3 medium-sized eggplants
    1 cup butter
    3 large onions, finely chopped
    2 pounds ground lamb or beef
    3 tablespoons tomato paste
    1/2 cup red wine
    1/2 cup chopped parsley
    1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
    6 tablespoons flour
    1 quart milk
    4 eggs beaten until frothy
    pinch of nutmeg
    2 cups ricotta or cottage cheese
    1 cup fine bread crumbs
    1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  Peel the eggplants and cut them into slices about 1/2 inch thick.
 Brown the slices in 4 tablespoons of the butter. Set aside.
 Heat 4 tablespoons of the butter in the same skillet and cook the
 onions until they are brown. Add the ground meat and cook 10 min.
 Combine the tomato paste, wine, parsley, and cinnamon. Stir into
 meat and simmer over low heat, stirring frequently, until all liquid
 has been absorbed. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

  Make a white sauce by melting remaining 1/2 cup of butter and
 blending in the flour, stirring with a wire whisk. Meanwhile bring
 the milk to a boil and add it gradually to the butter-flour mixture,
 stirring constantly. When the mixture is thickened and smooth, remove
 it from the heat. Cool slightly and stir in the beaten eggs, nutmeg
 and ricotta.

  Preheat oven to 375 F.

  Grease an 11 x 16 pan and sprinkle the bottom lightly with bread
 crumbs. Arrange alternate layers of eggplant and meat sauce in the
 pan, sprinkling each layer with Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs.
 Pour the ricotta sauce over the top and bake one hour, or until top
 is golden. Remove from oven and cool 1/2 hour before serving.
 Cut into squares and serve.

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  Curried Chicken Salad
  ==================
    1 3/4 cups chicken broth 
    1 1/2 lb. skinless boneless chicken breast 
    1/2 cup mayonnaise 
    1/3 cup plain yogurt 
    5 teaspoons curry powder 
    1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 
    1 teaspoon honey 
    1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 
    1/2 teaspoon salt 
    1/4 teaspoon black pepper 
    1 medium red onion, chopped (1 cup) 
    1 firm-ripe mango (3/4 pound), peeled, pitted, and chopped 
    1 cup red seedless grapes (5 ounces), halved 
    1/2 cup salted roasted cashews, coarsely chopped 

  Bring 4 cups water to a simmer with chicken broth in a 2- to 3-quart
 saucepan. Add chicken and simmer, uncovered, 6 minutes. Remove pan
 from heat and cover, then let stand until chicken is cooked through,
 about 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate and cool 10 minutes.
 Chop into 1/2-inch pieces. 

  While chicken is cooling, whisk together mayonnaise, yogurt, curry,
 lime juice, honey, ginger, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add
 chicken, onion, mango, grapes, and cashews and stir gently to combine.

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  Old-Fashioned Baked Beans
  =======================
    2 cups navy beans
    1/2 pound bacon
    1 onion, finely diced
    3 tablespoons molasses
    2 teaspoons salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
    1/2 cup ketchup
    1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
    1/4 cup brown sugar

  Soak beans overnight in cold water. Simmer the beans in the same
 water until tender, approximately 1 to 2 hours. Drain and reserve
 the liquid.

  Preheat oven to 325F. Arrange the beans in a 2 quart bean pot or
 casserole dish by placing a portion of the beans in the bottom of 
 dish, and layering them with bacon and onion.

  In a saucepan, combine molasses, salt, pepper, dry mustard, ketchup,
 Worcestershire sauce and brown sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil and
 pour over beans. Pour in just enough of the reserved bean water to
 cover the beans. Cover the dish with a lid or aluminum foil.

  Bake for 3 to 4 hours in the preheated oven, until beans are tender.
 Remove the lid about halfway through cooking, and add more liquid if
 necessary to prevent the beans from getting too dry.

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  Grilled White-and-Sweet-Potato Salad
  ==============================
    2 large waxy (new) potatoes, about 1 pound 
    1 or 2 sweet potatoes, about 1 pound 
    4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 
    Salt and pepper 
    1 tablespoon grainy mustard 
    1 tablespoon sherry or other vinegar, or to taste 
    1 bunch scallions, both white and green parts, chopped. 

  Start a gas or charcoal grill, or heat the oven to 450F. Peel
 potatoes and cut them into slices 1/2-inch thick. Toss them with half
 the olive oil and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Grill potatoes
 over direct but not-too-hot heat, turning them as they brown. Or
 roast them on nonstick baking sheet, turning once or twice.

  Potatoes will cook in about 10 to 15 minutes; remove them as they
 become tender. When they are done and fairly cool, toss them with
 remaining ingredients. Taste and adjust seasoning and serve. Or the
 salad can be covered and refrigerated; bring to room temperature
 before serving.

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  Flag Cake 
  ========
    1 - 9" X 13" inch white cake 
    2 pints strawberries 
    1 pint blueberries 
    Boiled Icing 

  Boiled Icing: 
    1 cup white sugar 
    1/3 cup water 
    1 tablespoon light corn syrup 
    1/8 teaspoon salt 
    2 egg whites 
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
    3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar 

  Combine sugar, water, corn syrup, and salt in a saucepan; stir 
 until well blended. Boil slowly without stirring until mixture 
 will spin a long thread when a little is dropped from a spoon 
 (hold the spoon high above saucepan), or reaches 238F - 242F.

  In a large bowl, beat egg whites with a mixer until they are 
 stiff, but still moist. Pour hot syrup slowly over egg whites 
 while beating. Continue until mixture is very fluffy, and will 
 hold its shape. Add vanilla, and beat until blended. If icing 
 does not seem stiff enough, beat in 2 or 3 tablespoons confectioners
 sugar 1 tablespoon at a time until stiff enough to hold its shape. 

  De-stem the strawberries and cut in half. Spread boiled icing 
 on cake. In the top left hand corner of the iced cake, make a 
 four inch tall by five inch wide rectangle with the blueberries. 
 Lightly press the berries into the icing. Fill in the rectangle 
 with remaining blueberries in rows. The white space in between 
 will resemble stars. 

  Place strawberries cut side down in rows going across horizontally.
 The bottom stripe is red, so start with that row. Be sure to 
 press the berries lightly into the frosting.

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 This Week's Culinary Quiz Answer: stuck to the side of an earthen oven

  All Indian restaurants have large round clay ovens called tandoor.
 Naan dough is stretched out, then slapped on the inside walls. A
 few minutes later, the bread is pulled off with a hook. Additionally,
 chicken is marinated in yogurt and spices, then skewered and cooked
 in the same oven, hence the name tandoori chicken.

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