Hello friends, enemies and randoms…. a week late again for posting again but let it not be thought that if the posting stops, the struggle for daily bread also stops… In any case I’m still backlogged with all these iPhone pics I never posted. Also I think I’m in a good mood this week cuz of several reasons: Firstly and foremost…. I got my tax return so amen. Because of who I am as a person this means treating myself to frozen fish sticks, a blue moon, mint Oreos, and Planet Earth. The heart wants what it wants. Secondly one of my BEST GALS visited me on this doomed island and Good Sense was restored to the world temporarily. And there’s no third thing but sources say threes are a good choice.
Anyways… for dinner last week I made Somewhat Teriyaki Chicken because as you know I have too much pride to look at a recipe for more than 15 seconds just to get the gist of it and then I do whatever I damn well please…
I used: For the chicken: 1.75lbs of chicken thighs, some flour (or cornstarch), 3/4 cup or thereabouts of soy sauce, some honey, some sugar, minced ginger and garlic, spring onions, salt, pepper. Veggie side: 4 carrots and a head of broccoli
First chop the chicken thighs into bite sized pieces. I bought skin on and bone in because it was a little bit cheaper and I wasn’t paying attention at the store. While deskinning and deboning them I started thinking fondly bout sitting in my great aunt’s living room eating peeled apples and being bragged about by my grandma while my uncle slaughtered a shrieking chicken (specifically… a 土鸡) in the bathroom. Truly a dear memory from the 2nd world that I’m uncharacteristically opening up to you my dear readers. What you know about 土鸡?
I didn’t have any rice wine but I should have, anyways then I tossed the chicken with a little bit of flour, salt, and pepper, then heated some oil in the pan. Then I stir fried the chicken until it was white (7 minutes +/-)
Then I mixed like a 1:1 ratio of soy sauce and honey/sugar (mostly by taste and pheel…) with the minced garlic and ginger and added it to the pan. I kept the same heat but stirred more as the sauce reduced a little bit, for 10 minutes or so. One of life’s small pleasures is TRULY a nice reduction…I suggest you try it if mindfulness and meditation have failed you.
I added spring onions at the last minute. I was really impatient so I didn’t chop them that great.
For my veggie I used the leftover juices from the chicken to cook the carrots and broccoli. It looks like frozen mixed veggies but I assure you folks, I cut and peeled it all myself… not that there’s anything wrong with freezer veggies of course.
Also I’m going through a sweet potato phase due to I bought a lot in bulk and ran out of rice… sooo I had this with a small sweet potato.
For lunch last week I had tuna wraps (tuna, black beans, and corn) which I didn’t take photos of because it’s a repeat from here but actually sadder if you can believe it. I’ll be back with more riveting lunches at some unknown future date. Like I said I’m backlogged with all kinds of magical, inspirational, and life changing posts to do during my next Triannual Good Mood.
I’ve been informed by a friendly reader that my blog is “political” so I will use this time to make a plug about the importance of doomsday preparedness which should really go without saying but I digress. Go tend to your crops, prepare your canned goods and seed bank, and listen to Frank’s new track about bicycles.
For the meatballs: 1lb of ground beef, 1 lb of Italian sausage, a bunch of parsley (chopped), 2c shredded cheese (I used TJ’s 4 cheese blend with parm, fontina, asiago, and provolone), 1c breadcrumbs, 2 eggs, salt/pepper/oregano
For the sauce: 2 cans of crushed tomatoes, 1 large onion (diced), a couple cloves of garlic, a small handful of the chopped parsley, salt/pepper/oregano
First I preheated the oven to 400. Meanwhile, I mixed all the ingredients for the meatballs until evenly combined.
Then I formed golf-ball sized meatballs (made about 35)and placed them on a greased baking sheet. I set the timer for about 25 minutes total, but halfway through I turned the meatballs so they would brown more evenly.
While the meatballs were baking, I made the sauce. First I cooked the chopped onion in some oil for 5-7 minutes with a little bit of the chopped parsley and added some minced garlic. Then I put in both (28oz) cans of crushed tomatoes and left it to bubble.
After it started bubbling I reduced the heat a little bit and left the sauce to reduce (on medium heat for about 35 minutes), stirring occasionally.
While the sauce was reducing I made the other stuff for dinner: cooked the pasta (I had a box of penne) and also sauteed some spinach with a little bit of garlic.
I stored the meatballs for freezing with the sauce (I had a little bit left over that I put in a jar for some future date).
Finally for lunch this week I had a small sandwich (English muffin, slice of prosciutto, a handful of arugula, some of the shredded cheese from above) and salad (black olives, frozen peas (they thaw before lunch), some cheese, and the arugula).
Happy March to one and all… (indeed….I realize it’s March 22 and not March 2…time flies…). Here are some fishy meals from a mercury filled week:
For dinner I had tilapia with sauteed asparagus and mushrooms as my veggie side. The inspiration for this was that my mother has asked me to stop being so cheap and buy some fish to eat… She offered to subsidize my potential weekly fish consumption which I strongly refused but I was honestly touched…Truly blessed to have someone in my life to remind me about my best interests and true prerogatives…
First I sliced a carton of regular old button mushrooms and chopped a bunch of asparagus into fourths, discarding the withered ends.
Then I melted some butter into the hot pan and cooked 2-3 spring onions for a couple minutes. I added mushrooms and then the asparagus, and cooked on high heat until both were tender, seasoning with salt and pepper.
After the veggies were done I transferred them into tupperware and kept some of the juices in the pot and added a little more butter and the tilapia fillets. To season, I sprinkled the fish with paprika, oregano, lemon juice, and salt/pepper.
I let it cook with the lid on for ~5 minutes and then flipped the fillets (unsuccessfully) to cook for another 3 minutes or so… I’m not very technically gifted so the pieces broke apart…
For my carb I had this with rice. The fish and veggie froze just fine and the fish didn’t end up too dry or rubbery even after a couple days. Expected tings happened to the veggies (eg. they shrivelled up and got a little fibery but that’s just the price I pay for convenience..)
Because I’m a silly little girl I went fishy (and pricey) for lunch too with smoked salmon on a sesame bagel (no capers… no square plate…). I mixed spring onions into cream cheese for some extra veggie and also topped with a handful of spring mix… which apparently according to some militant Huff Post salad enthusiast “deserves to die…” Anyways……. As a simple subsistence food prepper who has nothing to do with bourgeois foodie culture….. it’s none of my business why spring mix has been singled out for this brazen #slander…. I just came out here trying to treat myself to some smoked fish products and get my veggie on at the same time and suddenly have to deal with hate speech about salad…..Noted. Appalled but not shocked in this day and age.
This episode of excess has been brought to you by me anticipating my hefty tax return! Best of luck to everyone in their respective income brackets.. good luck and godspeed….
Here is one of my uglier YET action packed undertakings from three weeks ago (slowly catching up..)
Ingredients: 1 lb ground turkey, a few stalks of limp old celery from the back of the fridge, 1 large onion, a couple cloves of garlic, 1 large eggplant, 2 cans of tomato paste and 1 can of diced tomatoes, 1 tub of cottage cheese, 2 medium eggs, 1 container of no boil lasagna, 1 bag of kale, salt/pepper/dried oregano, probably other random stuff I’m forgetting
Before everything else, I sliced my eggplant into rounds (of varying thickness in practice but ideally like… 1/4 inch). Sprinkled with salt and pepper. Then I broiled for 5-6 minutes on each side if my memory serves me right..
Meanwhile, I fried up the diced onion and celery in oil for ~6 minutes on medium heat, adding garlic towards the end. Then I added salt, pepper, and dried oregano and browned the ground turkey.
After that I mixed in the two cans of tomato paste and one of diced tomatoes. Since I just had these lying around as extras from other recipes I had to adjust and dilute the meat sauce with some water since it was way too thick. I let the sauce begin bubbling and then reduced to simmer for 20 minutes or so.
While the sauce was simmering, I prepared the cottage cheese (not ricotta… u gotta take what you can get…) by mixing in two eggs, salt, pepper, oregano, and some random Mrs Dash seasoning because I cannot for the life of me get rid of it or figure out what it’s supposed to taste like…
Finally the fun part… I lined and greased a pan, then added one layer of sauce, one layer of noodles (no boil!), another layer of sauce, a layer of ricotta, a layer of eggplant, a layer of kale…. et cetera….I made probably 2.5 layers total, finishing off with a layer of eggplant with sauce on top.
Baked at 350 for 30 minutes or so covered with aluminum foil and 15-20 minutes uncovered but there probably wasn’t a point to that since I didn’t use cheese on top.
This was still hard to slice even after I put it in the fridge to let it cool down. I was able to preserve the layers for some slices but most were ugly and fell apart and became “casserole” which is just a nice way of saying U Tried. See below for the remnants of a slice…. and if you want you can picture me sitting on the ground at midnight taking that photo on the right with a glob of meat sauce on the floor… Pathos….
In scientific terms this made 1.5 shitloads of lasagna/lasagna casserole… Being that I consider myself a family of 7 hungry mouths to feed… that’s praxis folks…..
For lunch that week I have no explanation for why or for how the following kooky combination occurred to me (actually I do know. It’s because I’m running out of ideas and don’t want to eat tuna anymore). However… It honestly wasn’t that bad (plus I eat everything I make no matter how bad it is because sis.. that’s called self-respect!!!)…..I don’t even know why I feel like this is so kooky….too much green and white… it’s nonsensical and Seusslike… But I digress.
I think I could con people who buy avocado toast and go to brunch into thinking this is a legitimate sandwich if I just used some better bread, took pictures with a DSLR, and improved my personal brand…… But barring those events this is simply tofu (extra firm…obvi), BBQ sauce, green pepper, and spinach between two slices of #breadt.
Until next time, stay gold Ponypeople…. (my best and corniest sign off yet, God bless…)
Hullo…I’m still waaaaay behind on all the meals I have to post from the past few but here’s one from last week. This is one of my better ones in all honesty… it was super easy, flavorful, freezes well, and I was actually still looking forward to eating it after 5 days. Maybe that’s just the Stockholm Syndrome talking though… Anyways this was inspired by when I stirred risotto unflaggingly for 45 minutes for my old man in his time of need and also my unwillingness to do dishes.
Ingredients: 1 large onion, couple cloves of garlic, chicken thighs (I used skinless and boneless), lemon, curry powder, paprika, chili powder, salt/pepa, 4-5c chicken stock, 2 cups of rice, some kale
First I chopped 1 large onion, fried in oil for 5-7 minutes, then added 4-5 cloves of chopped garlic.
I had prepared 1 lb of chicken thighs by chopping into bite-sized pieces and marinading in lemon juice, salt and pepper (just for the 10-15 minutes it took me to gather all my ingredients and chop the onion and garlic)
I messed up and I think I should have toasted the spices (lot of curry power, some paprika and chili powder) with a little oil first to release the kraken… so to speak… before adding the chicken but I added the spices after… wooops…
Then I cooked the chicken in with the onions on medium heat for 5-6 minutes.
Once the chicken was no longer pink (it cooks thoroughly with the rice) I added 2 cups of rice (basmati) and mixed it in with the chicken and onion. I’m estimating because my personal rice measuring cup is in a unit known only to me as “how much rice I eat in three days”…
After that I added chicken stock which I ran out of so I had to add water to top it off. I usually do 2 Hog units of liquid to 1 Hog unit of rice. From there you just cook rice how you normally would which for me is give it a good stir, cover, and allow to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 mins, stirring occasionally to keep it from sticking to the bottom. Add more salt if needed…
stir in rice
add chicken stock
I was a tad bit worried because it seemed like too much liquid to rice but one thing every good hog should have faith in is the absorbent power of rice… don’t schleep….
For some reason I pretty much had to stir constantly to keep it from sticking which in my book gives me a good claim to this being risotto-like even though I didn’t add the broth in small batches or whatever… I’m just saying…
Please don’t ask me why I don’t have a rice cooker. It’s because I don’t do pushups or anything so stirring rice is my only recourse…It’s called the peasant mother workout though male chauvinists and their wicked allies will surely do their best to deny it its place in the history of vital and life-giving human enterprises…. Just saying…
I ended up adding more water despite my initial gut instinct because unconsciously I guess I was still thinking about a risotto-like consistency….
At the very end (the last 10 minutes or so) I added a whole bag (one of those big Glory bags.. is it 16 or 27oz?) of kale batch by batch since the pot of already pretty full and it was getting hard to stir. Then just for fun cause I had some lying around from overnight oats (my lunch….lol…) I added a dash of coconut milk. For reheating after freezing it wasn’t even dry-just put a damp paper towel over it in the microwave and it’ll come out Just Fine.
Foynally, you can see the finished product above… A truly empowering one pot wonder that literally anybody can do. If your life story doesn’t contain some version of chicken and rice and its many sisters and brothers then I just don’t know what to tell ya…
can be made in advance preferably in under 20 minutes and I don’t have to turn on the stove to do it
one largeish batch will hold in the fridge for 3-4 days
doesn’t require 4 billion tiny items.. (like… a hard boiled egg! a build your own pizza! leftovers! mini salad! mini dressing! apple carved in the shape of a cute animal)…
I can grab it and go even if I only woke up 10 minutes before class
some sort of flavor….or pizzaz…..which pretty much only means not a PB&J or a few wilted pieces of spinach and a bag of carrots
economic use carb + protein + veggie (see number 3…)
So as a result I use a lot of canned stuff (chickpeas, other beans, tuna, corn…) and vegetables that hold up (bell peppers, celery..) and just put it between two slices of bread…Read ahead for more fascinating revelations…
A couple weeks ago I made smashed chickpea salad using curry powder, chili powder, dried onion, chopped garlic, celery, and red bell pepper. It sounds like a lot but the spices and garlic I have on hand and so I only had to get celery, bell pepper, and two cans of chickpeas.
Smashed chickpeas in sesame oil (that I took from somebody else) with some salt and pepper, then mixed in spices.
Folded in chopped garlic, celery, and bell pepper.
Packed for lunch with a handful of kale and 2 pieces of bread to build a sandwich.
Another week, same formula: making tuna salad less boring (at least in my opinion) by adding canned black beans and corn in addition to the usual (no mayo, but olive oil; salt+pepper; squeez of lemon juice)…. And to force myself to eat green vegetables that haven’t been cooked beyond recognition I put some spinach in ze sandwich….. easy peasy…
And of course I’ve been toting lunch around in my extremely utilitarian and dorky ArcticZone lunchbox from my public school career… you know the kind with the sandwich container at the bottom and the choice between velcro-shut or zip-shut… very versatile in my humblest of opinions… Not to trigger any scarring middle school memories anybody out there is currently repressing (totally not me, for example) but I regret to inform you all that in the early 2000s I was not that chick carrying around a PB+J and Capri Sun and SnackPack in the headless Abercrombie model bag… unfortunately nor was I that chick with the Lilly Pulitzer…. For better or for worse I’m stuck with being an ArcticZone bitch forever! Which in all honesty I kinda think is a look and statement piece!
Until we meet again… peace to all my fellow BYOLers out there and goodwill to the rest of you too…
Many greetings and best wishes for the new year to all the fans out there… I have no excuses for letting you all down and not spreading the gospel of one Hog’s economical and dowdy life and sustenance except that for one of the two months I was away, I was hibernating at grandma’s house without a care in the world watching TV dramas (specifically 人间正道是沧桑…which I highly recommend) and being overfed and showered with proper care and affection….
Anyways, I’ve been back to my “normal reality” (political climate notwithstanding……) for a month now and it’s high time for me to once again document this Hog’s self-sufficient and charmingly amateurish kitchen chops…no porcine pun intended….. Also I haven’t written anything for a while so pardon me if I’m embarrassing you all with my heartfelt and honest Voice…. Let it also be known that even though I haven’t posted I’ve still been taking kwik pics on my phone of all my Foods so I’ll gradually be catching up on those.
In order to keep my promise (hog’s honor blog) from the last post I’m kicking off my renewed blogging vigor with that chili that I alluded to some 60 days ago…. As usual I was continuing my old habit of a one pot veg+protein over rice. By the way this is what I ate 7 days in a row during finals week so if you want to know my secret to being a bona fide girl genius and card-carrying baby einstein then look no further.
Casually and typically fried some onions for 5-6 minutes, then added other random veg: bell pepper, carrot, jalapeño, celery… and really whatever else you see depicted there because “twas” a hot second ago and I don’t really remember:
Then I added spices: that wholesale chili powder that I STILL have yet to even make a dent in despite using it every damn week, paprika, cumin….Continued to cook until the vegetables were soft….
Then I added 1lb of ground turkey, cooked until it was white, and then added 1 can of diced tomatoes and 2 cans of tomato paste. I don’t remember if I added chicken stock or something but I would guess that I did cause otherwise the tomato paste would have made it too thick…That’s just my unproven yet scientific hypothesis though….
I would suppose that I stirred it for a while, waited for the chili to start bubbling, and then lowered it to a simmer. Add bean. Lol
Simmer for 20 minutes? I’m guessing. 20 seems right. You all can verify on allrecipes dot com what sort of chili simmering timeframe my fellow domestics have collectively developed over the ages or even attempt this feat yourself to find out.
Finally the most important and iconic step, namely tupperwaring. Tupperwaring is the common hog’s own version of doomsday prepping on a smaller and more everyday scale and that’s what I live by, just a fun fact.
So that’s a quick and dirty stroll down memory lane to fulfill my promise to reveal chili to myself, my loyal fans, and my even more loyal hate stalkers. See you all in a bit (really… I’m committed…!) with another dinner+lunch combo from my hiatus. XOXO
Why is it that after I made this last week I was immediately violently attacked by a NYtimes recipe for “asian flavored salad” or some such noise….Is it really so simple as a cucumber slice and some sesame oil and suddenly we find our meager and poore tastebuds inexplicably and utterly transported to the ORIENT… And while I’m at it, just because people put cucumber slices on their eyes in cartoon spas doesn’t mean “REFRESHING” is the only word that does along with the humble cucumber…. Do better, establishment bloggers and bloggeuses….. And let me just say I don’t even read the NYtimes to that extent…. I truly just wanted to watch a nice calming video of somebody making chicken noodle soup and ended up being strongly COME FOR.
For sauce: sesame paste or tahini, a dash of sesame oil and soy sauce, minced garlic…. Notice me here trying to reclaim the good name of sesame oil and soy sauce from that demonic NYtimes flood blogger. Get that moo goo gai pan AWAY from me….
boil some spaghetti or whatever long noodles. See, I’m not claiming to be ITALIAN FLAVORED am I? Take notes….. Meanwhile:
mix up sauce ingredients in a small bowl… if you’re using sesame paste you need to dilute it a lot in water in order for the sauce to come out smoothly, so you might need to put more salt or soy sauce. At home I use 豆腐乳 like my mama taught me. In case the Asian Flavored Party was curious, the authentic asian taste is actually 5000 years of fermentation, signed sealed delivered
toss noodles in sauce
cut up some cucumber and spring onion into small pieces and toss in
I had some shredded cabbage left over from the borscht recipe so I mixed that in too
Please consider my petty quibbles with NYtimes Food to be for my own amusement and take as a peace offering this white bread sandwich that is falling apart at the seams which I have eaten 4 of this week so far (I call this authentic Cubicle Flavor):
That’s enough out of me. I made chili this week so I’ll post that soon. Best regards from my hovel to yours.
A tardy post this week but what I consider to be well worth the wait… Will preface by saying this might not pass any eastern bloc quality standards but nonetheless I deeply and truly stan for borscht so it’s all in good faith….and what’s better than boiled beets when you get down to it really……Let me also preface by saying I had a teeny tiny cup of borsht at a restaurant over the weekend and I couldn’t let it go so naturally the most sensible thing to do then is to plan to have borsht 7 days in a row.
I used: 3 beets, 3 small carrots, 2 large potatoes, 1 large red onion, shredded cabbage, lemon, garlic, a slightly less than 1 pound slab of beef, and beef stock. Plus sour cream and dill if you want to get technical but I have constraints.
Sliced beef into bite sized cubes as a pressed for time alternative to letting it stew for 4 hours or whatever….Someday…but not today. Threw in with beef stock and let it come to a boil, then reduced to a low boil at med-lo heat, covered.
Meanwhile, steamed beets in the microwave which led to an all out murder scene (even though I poked holes in the beets!) but the beets were cooked and I clean up after myself so no harm no foul… For all the inquiring minds out there, water does indeed boil after 8 straight minutes in the microwave which I didn’t know because I’m suspicious of microwave radiation and mind control so I generally don’t play these types of games like “brownie in a mug” or whatever. Kidding….But I just wanted to save some time……
my hand though…
Meanwhile meanwhile, cubed the potato, carrot, and onion and ditto with the beets. Again, if you have the means I think microplaning the beets and carrots is the right way to go but this ain’t my turf
I just cooked the onion, garlic, and beets together for a hot minute and added salt and pepper because the beef was supposed to simmer for 45 minutes or so before adding other stuff so why not.
THEN when 45 minutes was up I put the cooked onion/beet in the pot along and stirred a little bit, plus added more salt because it was too sweet…
I let that go at a low boil for like ~15 minutes and then added the raw potato and carrot for the last 15-20 mins. The last 5 minutes I added shredded cabbage. Finally I squeezed in the almost all the juice of 1 lemon.
In an alternate universe I topped it with a dollop of sour cream and dill.
In conclusion, just know that, ever your faithful servant, I’m out here viciously peeling a potatowith my teeth and wishing for the semester to be over so I can once again pick up the Wheel of Time and my knitting needles and resume being a big slug. I’ll post lunch in a couple of days to restore the circadian rhythms of this blog… but until then…parting is such sweet sorrow….
Here’s a fruit soup I made with Adult Supervision over the fowl festivities this past week, so consider it signed sealed and delivered. If you’re about that life it contains about as much fruit as sugar so there’s something for everyone…
We used 2 sweet potatoes, 2 tart apples, an asian pear, and one lemon + orange for zest but you can basically use any biteable fruit/root that isn’t a membrane sac full of water (looking at you, grapes, cherries, and berries…).
However much soup you want to make…put that amount of water in a pot with 4 chunks of rock sugar or whatever…”to taste”…… and dissolve. Also a cinnamon stick and nutmeg or whatever spices you happen to like…..This is a real stone soup so really just go your own way…
The little man took this… he’s an artist as you can tell
While the sugar is dissolving chop chop the fruit into cubes, grate a little bit of lemon and orange zest on top (I saved the rest for later), and dump in the pot.
Cooketh for 30 minutes or thereabouts over med-low heate or until the fruite is softened to thine liking
You may choose to serve hot as is or chill for a a couple hours and subsequently serve chilled as one does…… Now that I think of it you could have skipped all the steps and just made sangria instead. Or you could add tapioca pearls. And I think my grandma used to make something like this with 酒酿 but I’ve been led astray and that’s a whole nother can of worms involving cornstarch…
Anyways I like this. This is hot and I’m proud to serve it.
I also had lunch this week surprise surprise so please see below for other wonders…
this pic is definitely upside down
horrible TJs green chiles, just sayin
My signature hummus involves not having a food processor and using a ladle to mash chickpeas and then thinking to myself, I surely would have been such a catch in the preindustrial, pre-food processor hummus community….
I’ve usually used sesame paste instead of tahini for the same ole reason of I’m Chinese but when in Rome I suppose…….OK… I’ll admit this time that sesame paste is kinda crude and oily in comparison….just like me…….and we’ll both never change!
1 can of chickpeas + maybe 5oz of tahini + salt pepper + canned green chiles for pizzaz (never buying that brand again. no heat. just sludge) + imaginary squeeze of lemon juice
Aforementioned ladle to mash and mix and then voila….bone app the teeth
Until next time…. love peace and chicken grease my friends