Chocolate Dipped Potato Chips

I’m trying to get ready for Christmas.  I’ve certainly got the time for it.  I know what you’re thinking:  Girl, it’s only October, but who knows when and what the next catastrophe could be, so I’m going to start practicing now.

I’d never tasted chocolate dipped potato chips before.  Am I a fan?  Probably not.  You definitely need the right potato chip.  I tried Tim’s and Ruffles today.  The Ruffles were a clear winner in my book.  I needed the salty to balance the sweet of the chocolate.  Tim’s had a way too subtle taste.  The chips also needed to be ever so sturdy.

The other problem for me, I don’t really like chocolate.  These were good according to G.  I actually broke off the bark I had in the freezer.  If you see little lumps, those are Reeses Pieces that didn’t quite melt.  Why not reuse?

So, I melted approximately 12 ounces of chocolate to start in a deepish Pyrex glass bowl.  I wanted room to dip the chips into the melted chocolate.  I picked through the potato chips until I found a collection of good shapes.  I wish I’d saved the plate after I was done so you could see the clear winners.  G ate all the Ruffles and the Tim’s were left sad and alone.  Le sigh.  Will I make these again?  G says yes, but I found the flavor totally lacking.  I vote no.

* From the Recipe Box:
Maybe dark chocolate would improve the taste.  I’m just kind of negative about the whole thing.  I like potato chips, but with the chocolate, boring.
Yes, deepish is a word.  I don’t know why you keep doubting me.
and remember:   You are either on my side, by my side, or in my fucking way.  Choose wisely.  Big kiss, Lynn, the Great and Powerful

Monte Cristo Sandwich

Back when I was a cute young thing, I would go to lunch with with my mom, aunts and cousins. We would always have the best time. There was much laughing and talking. We had many favorite restaurants, but one of my favorites was Claire’s in Edmonds. I can’t even tell you if it’s still open. I can tell you that when it was, they made the very best Monte Cristo Sandwiches on the planet.

I don’t know if anyone still makes Monte Cristos, but you’re missing a great opportunity if they are available and you don’t have one.

3 slices white bread

Mayonnaise, as needed

2 slices Gouda or any cheese you prefer

2 slices ham

3 large eggs, beaten

1/4 cup milk

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Serving suggestion: Raspberry jam. All the recipes I saw on line said blackberry; they were wrong.

Directions

  1. On a work surface, lay out 2 slices of bread and spread with mayonnaise or butter. Top each slice with the 1 slice of Gouda or Gruyere and 1 slice of ham, depending how thick it is. Put the third slice of bread on top of one stack, and flip the remaining stack on top, cheese-side down, to make a triple-decker sandwich.
  2. Combine the eggs and milk in a bowl. Heat the oil and butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Dip it in the egg batter, to coat evenly. Gently place it in the skillet, and fry, turning once, until golden brown and hot, about 5 minutes total.
  • Cut the Monte Cristo in 1/4’s, transfer it to a plate.

*  From the Recipe Box:

As much as I love bread, a triple decker sandwich is jus too much for me. I would never order a club sandwich either.

and remember: Keep on being you. Keep on doing those beautiful impactful honest things you do out here in this crazy world. We need more people like you. Big Kiss, Lynn

Baked Apple

It must be autumn.  The variety of apples is amazing.  My neighbor brought me some King Apples yesterday.  I’ve not seen those since I lived in Portland.  It’s funny how some apples can’t be shipped and are only passed on with a secret coded hand shake.  I will be making Apple Crisp with part of the box, but I decided to try making Baked Apples with some.

Unfortunately, they did not photograph as well as I would have liked.  The problem is, they photographed as they looked.  What is it with me and brown food?  This is a recipe from Grandma O’s recipe box.  If she finagled the recipe just right, she could eat one, even with her diabetes.  Of course, she needed to use Saccharin.  This was the 50’s before cancer was a big deal.

Ingredients

4 large baking apples, such as Honeycrisp

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, softened

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup oatmeal

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Wash and core apples, leaving enough of the core at the base of the apple to contain the filling.
  3. Combine the butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and in a small bowl. Roll log shapes of the mixture and press enough into each apple to fill the core.
  4. Fill a 2-quart baking dish with enough to cover the bottom. Place the apples upright in the dish. Bake until the apples are soft and the filling is browned, 1 hour.
* From the Recipe Box:
 
It’s just G and I living at the cabin, so I only baked 2 apples in a bread pan.  I ordered an apple corer, but I wasn’t impressed with the end result.  I guess I don’t have the hand strength to control the depth of the core.
 
Grrrr, more brown food.  G put so much whip cream on it, you couldn’t see the apple.  I’m not a major whip cream fan so mine ended up naked and brown.  The flavor was good, but I’ve got to say, it’s a wee bit on the ugly side.
 
If you’re trying to identify everything in the picture, good luck.
 
and remember:   Teddy Roosevelt said it best:  Complaining about a problem without proposing a solution is called whining.   Big kiss, Lynn

Mushroom Alfredo

One of my favorite bloggers is Rumbly in my Tumbly. I started out following her due to a friend of a friend connection. She’s actually the first person I signed up to follow and I’ve never regretted it. This isn’t actually a recipe she developed, but she adapted it from Pinch of Yum.

I made it last night for G and I. It was incredibly filling. I’ll put my changes in the Recipe Box. Since I like meatless meals, finding some that satisfy us both is quite rewarding. I really enjoyed the combination of mushrooms. Of course, I’m quite a mushroom fan, so this was a real treat.

The pasta came together quite quickly. I know it looks a little dry, but that’s why you’re keeping some of your pasta water. I’d never used herbes de Province before. Nice flavor and I’ll use it again. I might even try making it myself; it’s all things I have in my spice cupboard: savory, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, and oregano. I’ll keep you posted.

16 ounces pasta (linguine is a favorite of mine)

6 tablespoon butter, divided

3 cloves garlic, minced, divided

4 cups fresh mushrooms, sliced (any kind)

2 tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon herbes de provence

1 1/2 cups milk

S & P to taste

3 tablespoons olive oil

additional 1/2 cup pasta water, broth mild or cream (optional)

parmesan cheese for topping

Cook the pasta in salted water, drain, set aside and toss with a little oil to prevent sticking.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add one clove of the garlic and sauté for a minute until fragrant. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 5 -10 minutes, until golden brown. Set aside.

Add the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter to the pan and melt again over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant. Add the flour and herbes of Provence. Stir for a minute to cook out the flour taste. Slowly add the milk, whisking to incorporate. Let mixture simmer until thickened. Season with S & P.

* From the Recipe Box:

If you like mushrooms, you will enjoy this. The more varieties the better. It looks dry in the pcture, but it really wasn’t.

and remember:  Don’t compare your life to others. There’s no comparison between the sun and the moon. They shine when it’s their time. Big kiss, Lynn

Faux Sqirl Toast

I’m not ripping Sqirl off; I’m giving them total credit for this amazing thing to eat.  I remember the first time I took my folks to Starbucks.  I truly thought my dad was going to split a gut.  I can still hear him, ” $3.00 for a cup of coffee.  You’ve got to be kidding me.”  Sqirl is the same principle for a lot of people.  One slice of toast for approximately $9.00.  As if!

The owner of Sqirl, Jessica Koslow, rocks my world.  Not only did she come up with this amazing idea, but she was able to market it to people willing to pay the price.  I’ve seen her a few times in interviews and I can’t believe how clever some people are.

So, let’s talk recipe.

The one I saw profiled tonight was called Unicorn Toast.

Cut a slice of brioche at least one inch thick.  I’m using our very own homemade oatmeal bread.  Toast it on both sides.

Slather it thickly with creamy ricotta cheese.  I’m using creamed cream cheese thinned with a little cream instead because I prefer cream cheese to ricotta.

Finally, spread it with stripes of jam.  They used 4 different jams, thus the Unicorn.  I don’t keep that many jars of jam in the refrigerator, so I settled for 3.  I do wish I’d done a better of striping.  I used raspberry, golden plum and lemon curd, all Bonne Maman.  I must say, both G and I thought the lemon curd was magical on the cream cheese.

It looked ever so amazing.

*  From the Recipe Box:

Jessica, I’m going to look up some of your other concoctions.  You are my type of creative genius.  Look her up on-line.  The brioche is much more La-di-da than my oatmeal bread, but you know how I feel about using what you’ve got.

and remember:  Better an “oops” than a ‘what if”.  Big kiss, Lynn

Mississippi Chicken Pot Roast

If you have ever had Mississippi Pot Roast, this is very similar.  I posted the meat version of this in October of last year.  This is almost identical with just chicken as the only difference and so flavorful.  The Mississippi Pot Roast recipe in case you are interested is super easy and very handy to have in your rotation.  You will not be disappointed.

The gluten-free-girl was here for dinner and I made this. I checked all the ingredient lists and everything was copasetic for her tummy. I made it with rice and corn, but there are so many options. I’m making the leftovers into tacos. I’m also using it in salads. It freezes well if you want to keep some on hand.

1 packet Au Jus gravy mix

1 packet Ranch seasoning or Onion Soup Mix

1 cup reduced chicken broth

1 cube of butter

as many pepperoncini plus juice as you like

Place everything in your crockpot.

Cook on LOW for 6 hours.  Shred and serve with your choice of sides and enjoy.  

*  From the Recipe Box:

I’ve not made it with thighs yet, but I will.  When I do, I will probably serve it with rice and teriyaki and leave out the pepperoncini.

I think it would be great with stuffing or mashed potatoes as well. I made gravy with the au jus. I added a bit of Worcestshire sauce to darken it up and add to the flavor. It was good.

We like gravy. I made the jus into gravy using Worcestshire sauce. Way good. This week I used balsamic, cream and butter. I think we both thought it was even better. Give them a try, you won’t be disappointed.

and remember:   Life humbles you as you age.  You realize how much time you wasted on nonsense.  Big kiss, Lynn

Raisin Cream Pie

We are pie people.  None of that frou-frou cake stuff for us.  Mom was raised on a farm and pie was the dessert of choice.  Yesterday was her birthday, so G and I made pie in her honor.  More than a few years ago, mom, the S-I-L and I were discussing our favorite pie after a pie heavy Thanksgiving dinner.   The 3 of us all admitted a deep love for Raisin Cream Pie.  It’s not everyone’s choice.  It’s kind of fallen out of favor over the last few years, decades.

The last time I made this pie, I used my favorite raisin mix from Trader Joe’s.   It’s a 5 raising mix that is totally the bomb diggity, but those suckers grew incredibly large when soaked in the hot liquid.  Don’t do that.  Use the regular old raisins.  Save the fancy raisins for eating out of hand.

Be that as it may, we’re going this this pie for mom’s birthday.

Stew 1 1/2 cups raisins until fluffy.

Drain and add 1 1/2 cups sugar and 3 tablespoons flour.    Stir until mixed.  Add 1 1/2 cups sour cream.  Cook for 5 minutes. 

Add 3 egg yolks and cook until thick.  Pour into a baked pie shell.  

Cover with meringue.

*…….From the Recipe Box:

I think the golden raisins were a little too subtle.  

and remember:  Walk away from anything or anyone who takes away from your joy.  Life is too short to put up with fools.   Big kiss, Lynn

**** I’m having blog issues. If this comes across totally wonky, I apologize and hope to improve things soon.