Once upon a time, Ms. S wanted to bring something to a weekend away with friends but what would travel well on a bus from NYC all the way to the far away land of Massachusetts?
BEER BREAD (mix, to be made on the spot)
It was such a great idea. It was easy, goes with everything, didn’t take up room, and didn’t create any leftovers! Yum! I was new to the world of Tastefully Simple but it sounds like fun and I’m glad to be in-the-know (recently I was feeling old/out-of-it after having to google flash mob).
12 oz beer or carbonated beverage
3 tbs butter (optional)
1) Empty mix into a big bowl
2) Stir in beer
3) Melt butter and pour over the top of the mixed batter
4) Bake according to package
I hesitate to share the commotion this bread caused before telling you how yummy it is! We loved it and ate it all. For beer Ms. S chose a winter beer which was great, thought I hadn’t had it anyother way. The buttered top made it crispy and delicious.Ok, so, we’re in a rental house with a full kitchen. Ms. S followed all instructions perfectly and baked it until she realized the oven was smoking. It smelled like chemicals so we fanned it out, wiped the bottom of the oven, let it cool and turned it back on. It seemed fine at first but the smoke came back! It was crazy, let me tell you. One of us would open the oven and stand back from the fumes, another one would hold a small fan pointing into the oven, three was taking photos, and four was opening doors and fanning the smoke detector.
The smell was very intense and the property owner had to come over to look at the oven. We still attest that it wasn’t our fault. We THINK the previous tentant may have used oven cleaner on a self-cleaning oven (serious no-no).
Anywho, it baked part way, then the oven had a hissy fit then it baked more. It didn’t taste like the smoke at all and turned out fine. We loved it and hope to have it again!
Stranded on an island with one meal, hands down a breakfast sandwich is my choice. Everytime. I’m specifically interested in one varity: sausage, egg, cheese on a croissant. I mean I wouldn’t pass up one with bacon, or on a bagel, but for breakfast or brunch, this is a pretty regular choice for me. It is also a great way to compare restaurants!
over-easy or scrambled
preferably cheddar, but American will do just fine
maple is great but links or patties, I don’t discriminate
croissants are my favorite, but again, bagels make a great choice…the caveat? The bagel must, must, must be toasted or grilled. This seems obvious but it has been a reoccurring faux pas.
My local favorites include Kelly’s Diner, Ball Square Cafe, Bakers’ Best, and yes, Dunkin’ Donuts.
Unacceptable breakfast sandwiches are found at The Broken Yolk (untoasted bagel and a single link sausage cut in half) and Moogy’s (stringy cheese and rubbery bacon).
Normally my restaurant choices lean towards something I cannot make at home, but the fact that I don’t make them regularly adds validity to my choice. It needs to be served HOT HOT HOT. Also, the egg must be cooked through while the cheese needs to be melted. I swoon over a sharpness of the cheddar, the toasty-ness of the croissant, and the sweetness of the sausage gets me every time.
I needed to make a healthy appetizer for a non-profit having a get together for women. On The Rise
is an amazing organization who supports women who are trying to move out of homelessness and women in crisis. I was in a hurry and didn’t have a ton of ideas. I knew my ap wouldn’t be able to be kept or served warm so I went with a semi-homemade dip.I had raita dip from Trader Joe’s so I used that as my starting point. I made this with the idea of spinach and artichoke dip without all the cheese and one that wouldn’t need to be served hot.
6 oz premade Raita
3 cups spinach, chopped
½ cup non-fat sour cream
1 jar artichoke hearts
1 pumpernickel bread loaf, uncut
1) Wilt spinach in a skillet.
2) Slice the top of the loaf and hollow out the inside.
3) Mix raita, sour cream, artichoke hearts, and spinach.
4) Refrigerate a few hours or overnight.
5) Serve in bread bowl with bread, baby carrots, and wheat thins to dip.This probably won’t be my claim to fame but it fulfilled the criteria I was looking for. It also was cheap, easy, and traveled well. I don’t have a final photo since they protect the anonymity of their clients so I wasn’t at the meal.
I’ve made lunch for these ladies and I really wonder how it has gone over. Again, the charge was healthy and minimal prep. Once I made sandwich filling options of grilled chicken salad with grapes or greek veggies (hummus, feta, cukes, tomatoes, and greek dressing) in pita pockets or bulkie rolls. Another time I made breakfast of baked blueberry french toast, hashbrown casserole, and mini bagels with cream cheese.
I was bringing a meal to my NYE weekend in the Berkshires and I was thinking about what would be easy, travel well, and was good for a group of 8. I came up with mac & cheese. Who doesn’t love it.
Well, I didn’t love mine as much as I anticipated when making it the night before BUT I know what I’ll do for the next time around. It was too dry. The night I cooked it, there was an amazing looking creamy-ness and cheesy texture I couldn’t resist sampling a macaroni before baking. I cooked it part way before packing it, but maybe I should have kept everything separate since I knew I would have access to a kitchen.
It was good, but it wasn’t amazing. I based it off Alton Brown’s mac & cheese recipe. I switched up the topping to crushed potato chips instead of bread crumbs. I also added some other cheeses.
*special note: this serves about 6 so I doubled it for 8 and had leftovers*
1 pound large elbow macaroni
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons mustard
5 cups milk
1 large egg
12 ounces sharp cheddar, shredded
½ cup mozzarella, shredded
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded or grated
1 teaspoon koshersalt
Fresh black pepper
5 tablespoons butter
1 cup crushed potato chips
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2) In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook the pasta to a bit firmer than al dente.
3) While the pasta is cooking, in a separate pot, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep whisking until it is free of lumps for several minutes.
4) Cook bacon until crisp then chop into pieces.
5) Stir in the milk and simmer for ten minutes.
6) Temper in the egg. Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Fold the sauce into the macaroni in the casserole dish. Mix in chopped bacon. Top with remaining cheese.
7) Melt the topping butter in a saute pan and toss the chips in to coat. Top the macaroni with the chips. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and rest for five minutes before serving.
Leftovers need some additional help to recreate the creamy texture so I add a dribble of milk or cream and a sprinkle of leftover cheese.
I think next time I make mac & cheese I will greatly increase the liquid and severely undercook the pasta since it’ll cook a bit when baking.
Other great additions to baked mac & cheese are: caramelized shallots; cherry or grape tomatoes whole and basil; sometimes I make it Mexican with taco seasoning, pepper jack cheese, green onions, salsa, and topped with crushed tortilla chips. What should I add next time?