One woman's foray into cooking for herself, for her family, and for her friends. It's not always picture-perfect, sometimes a little messy,
but it's always delicious. Join me in exploring new recipes, savoring the "résultats" and learning from the "erreurs".

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Foodie Friday: Seasoned Tortilla Chips & Homemade Salsa

Football season is upon us, and you can't watch football without some good eats and a favorite libation at the ready.  My snack repertoire is continually growing, but the one standard of football watching is chips & salsa.  Of course you can open up a bag - there are numerous pre-made chips available (yellow corn, white corn, flour), and, of course, you can uncap a jar, and your nosh is ready.  OR... you can fry up some chips and season them as you desire, and you can blitz up a flavorful salsa in the blender in no time flat. So easy, so good.  And your fellow football fans will be forever appreciative of your efforts.  I promise! Just don't forget to keep the beer ice cold!


1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 jalapeno, seeded (use more if you like to keep a fire extinguisher handy, less if you prefer a milder version)
1 small onion, quartered
handful of cilantro
1/2 teaspoon cumin
salt & pepper, to taste
juice of 1 lime

Add all ingredients to blender jar.  Blend for just a few seconds - the salsa should still have some texture to it.  Adjust seasoning as desired.  Refrigerate in covered container.

Tortilla Chips

Cut corn tortillas in sixths.  Heat a skillet of canola oil over medium-high heat.  Add tortillas to skillet, about 8 - 12 chips at a time.  Fry until golden (chips may need to be turned over during cooking process).  Remove to paper towel-lined bowl. While still warm, season with salt, chili powder, and lime zest.

* * * * * * * * * *

Click on Foodie Friday logo to visit Designs by Gollum.
 Thank you for stopping by All That Splatters.  Join me in checking out all the other wonderful Foodie Friday participants at Designs by Gollum, hosted by Michael.  Thank you, Michael!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Announcing: Weekend Blog Showcase

Ann of Thibeault's Table and I are excited to unveil a revamped version of the blog showcase... Announcing  Weekend Blog Showcase!

The Weekend Blog Showcase is an opportunity to cook and share the recipes we all drool over from our fellow bloggers.  Ann and I will take turns hosting the Showcase.  To participate, prepare a recipe from another blog other than your own and post about it.  In your post, make sure to link back to the blog you've borrowed from.  (It's always a nice touch to leave a comment on your referenced blog, as well.)  Place the Weekend Blog Showcase logo on your post, then sign into Mr. Linky on either Ann's or my Weekend Blog Showcase post for that week, leave a comment, and visit the other participants' entries.  That's it!  Easy and fun!

Our first Weekend Blog Showcase will begin on Saturday, October 1, at All That Splatters.  On behalf of Ann and myself, we thank you in advance for 'playing'!  See you on Saturday!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Pulled Pork Sandwich

For all my years in Texas, this Yankee girl knows very little about making barbecue.  My grilling repertoire consists mainly of vegetables, hamburgers and an occasional steak.  I don't own a smoker and have no idea how to even approach that method of cooking.  So when I came across Linda's (How to Cook a Wolf) crockpot version of pulled pork, not to mention the gorgeous accompanying photographs, I had to try it.  Truth is, I've had this on my to-try list for quite some time now.  Well, the temperatures are cooling down and it just feels like pulled pork sandwich weather!  I got out the recipe and dusted off my crockpot.

Let me tell you - the meat comes out juicy and tender.  I also made the BBQ sauce (also very good, though I'm sure your favorite pre-made BBQ sauce would work well here), and since Linda put the thought in my head to add coleslaw to the sandwich (as she did in hers), I also made the slaw to top off the sandwich.

I had some kaiser rolls I purchased this week from a local bakery - they worked perfectly!  After splitting one and lightly toasting it under the broiler, I spread a little of the homemade sauce on the bottom, layered plenty of pulled pork over the sauce (with a little more sauce on the meat), then topped with a generous helping of coleslaw.

I'm in pulled pork heaven.  *sigh*  Trust me on this - you won't be disappointed in this recipe!  Many thanks to you, Linda!

Pulled Pork Sandwiches

2-1/2 to 3 pound pork sirloin roast or boneless pork shoulder roast
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon ground cumin or chili powder
1/2 cup water

1 recipe homemade BBQ sauce (recipe follows) or 3-1/2 cups bottled BBQ sauce

Hamburger buns (makes 10 generous servings)

Trim fat from roast. Cut roast, if necessary to fit in a 3-1/2 to 4 quart slow cooker. Season meat with salt and pepper. In a small bowl combine 1/2 cup water, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and cumin. Pour over meat in cooker. Cover; cook on low-heat setting 8 to 10 hours or on high-heat setting 4 to 5 hours. Remove meat; discard liquid. (Note: I didn't discard the liquid, but mixed it in with the shredded meat as there was virtually no fat on the meat I used.)

Using two forks shred meat; return it to cooker. Stir in 2 cups homemade BBQ sauce or bottled BBQ sauce. Cover and cook on high setting for 30 to 45 minutes or until heated through.

Serve meat mixture in split hamburger buns. Pass remaining sauce.

Homemade BBQ Sauce

Combine 2-1/2 cups ketchup; 1 cup finely chopped onion; 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar, 3 tablespoons bottled Pickapeppa or Worcestershire sauce; 3 tablespoons cider vinegar; 3 cloves garlic, minced; and 1/4 teaspoon bottled hot pepper sauce in a medium saucepan. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Use immediately or let cool; cover and chill up to 3 days. Makes 3-1/2 cups.

Source: Country Living Magazine via Linda (How To Cook a Wolf)

Note:  Per Linda's suggestion, I used the recipe on the back of the pre-packaged coleslaw mix, adding in about 1/2 teaspoon of celery seed.  Delicious! 

* * * * * * * * * *

Just a reminder: There's one more day to vote on the inclusion (or exclusion) of music on my blog. I'm loving all the feedback! Please go to the top of the page and let me know: To groove or not to groove... it will continue to be the question until tomorrow night! Thank you, everyone!


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Poll-taking: To Groove or Not to Groove, That is the Question...

First, let me say a big THANK YOU to everyone who visits All That Splatters.  I just adore the comments and suggestions I receive from all of you.  It's fun to share recipes and photos with fellow foodies!

Now on to the business at hand.  During the past (not quite) two years that I've been blogging, I have received 2 or 3 rather rude complaints about the music that streams through my blog.  Since they were not in keeping with the tone I try to maintain on my blog, I deleted them with very little fanfare (my suspicion is that they were from the same person).  By the same token, I have had some wonderful compliments on my choice of tunes.   However, I do realize that everyone has their opinion about such things, and so I thought I would provide a more kindly manner in which you may express yours.  There is a poll near the top of the page asking the big question.  Do you mind music on blogs?  Or would you rather peruse in peace?  I truly want to know and will abide by the majority.

So that is the question at hand:  To Groove or Not to Groove.  What are your thoughts?

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Artichoke & Hollandaise

I love artichokes.  Their flavor can be an acquired taste, and to tell you the truth, I was not nearly as captivated by them when first introduced to this member of the thistle family.  But it wasn't long before addiction set in.  The flavor is not only wonderful, but there's something very 'cool' about scraping the leaves through your teeth.  It's one of those vegetables that makes you wonder about the first brave soul to figure out that such pleasure existed in this odd and somewhat intimidating-looking plant.  However, by far my favorite part of this vegetable is the heart.  It's definitely worth all the work excavating through the leaves to find.

My favorite way to enjoy artichokes is stuffed with flavored bread crumbs and served with a lemon-butter sauce.  But like the many other foodies who were compelled to break out their personal copies of Mastering the Art of French Cooking after watching the movie Julie and Julia, I had to try Julia Child's suggestion of enjoying a steamed or boiled artichoke with Hollandaise sauce on the side.  And while I'm sure Ms. Child would frown upon my shortcut blender Hollandaise, I cannot taste a difference (or enough of one, anyway) between my blender version and the stand-in-front-of-the-stove-and-stir-butter-til-your-arm-falls-off version.

As a bit of an aside, take a gander at the beautiful board my dinner is resting on.  It's one of Ann's (The Maple Cutting  Board Gallery).  I love the design in the wood, the beautiful edge of the board.  Now that Ann and her husband are creating these boards themselves, I'm going to have a difficult time reining in my wish to add to my collection.  I imagine that is going to be a futile endeavor...

Artichoke with Hollandaise Sauce

4 large artichokes
Hollandaise Sauce (recipe follows)

Trim artichokes by cutting off the stem so that the artichoke will sit flat and steady.  Cut off about 3/4- to 1-inch of top of artichoke.  If desired, snip tips of large outer leaves.  Rub cut edges with cut lemon to prevent browning.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil (should be large enough so that boiling water will cover artichokes).  Carefully drop artichokes into boiling water, cover, and cook for 45 minutes - 1 hour.  To test for doneness, tug at one of the bottom outer leaves.  It will come out easily when artichoke is fully cooked.  When done, remove with tongs and drain.  Serve with Hollandaise sauce.

Hollandaise Sauce
3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
Dash hot pepper sauce
1/2 cup butter, melted and bubbling

Add egg yolks, lemon juice, salt and hot pepper sauce to blender, and blend about 5 seconds. With blender running, and partially covering top, pour in bubbling butter in a steady stream. Blend until thickened, about 30 seconds. Serve immediately.

Yield: 3/4 cup

Source: GE appliance recipe, copyright 1978

* * * * * * * * * *

Click on Foodie Friday logo to visit Designs by Gollum

Please visit Designs by Gollum to see everyone's contributions to Foodie Friday this week!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Olive-Rosemary Breads

Like many other food bloggers, I love to peruse the photos that make the cut at Tastespotting.  As I was scrolling through recent entries, I saw these Olive and Rosemary Breads posted by Technicolor Kitchen.  I knew this was going on my 'short list' to make soon.  Very soon.  The recipe was a basic bread dough but with the pop of fresh rosemary and chopped kalamata olives.  Admittedly, I spent little time in chopping up the olives - I left them in pretty decent sized chunks.  There's no mistaking their flavor in these rolls.  I also threw caution to the wind when dividing up the dough.  Instead of the 16 rolls the original recipe yielded, I decided to go a little bigger and make just 12.  I used a muffin tin, brushing each well with a little olive oil, then plopped the little balls of dough into each opening.  After their last rising, they were brushed again with olive oil, and then into the oven.  The wafting aroma of bread baking always makes me swoon.  The wafting aroma of this bread baking literally made me salivate.  My thanks to Patricia for being the talented photographer that she is!  I would hate to have missed this one!

Olive-Rosemary Breads

Basic dough:
1 teaspoon dry active yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (240ml) lukewarm whole milk
2 ½ cups (350g) all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil

1 quantity basic dough
generous 1/2 cup black olives
1-1/2 tablespoons rosemary leaves
all purpose flour, for kneading
olive oil, for brushing

Place the yeast, sugar and milk in a bowl and mix to combine. Set aside in a warm place for 5 minutes or until bubbles appear on the surface.

Add the flour, salt and oil to the yeast mixture and mix until a smooth dough forms. Knead on a lightly floured surface for 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic, adding a little extra flour if the dough becomes too sticky.  Cover with plastic wrap, set aside in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Brush sixteen 1/2 cup (120ml) capacity pans with oil or cooking spray.

Press down the olives with the palm of your hand to remove the stones, then tear the olives into pieces. Knead the olives and rosemary leaves into the dough on a generously floured surface, incorporating extra flour to compensate for the wetness of the olives. Divide into 16 pieces and roll into balls.  Place in prepared pans, cover with a clean tea towel and set aside in a warm place for 45 minutes or until the dough is doubled in size. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.  Brush with the oil and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden.

Makes 16

Patricia's Note:  "These reheat really well."  Good to know!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Baked Scallops

I've been on a seafood kick of late.  Scallops and shrimp have been my crustaceans of choice, and scallops make an appearance again today.  Ann at Thibeault's Table discovered this recipe at another blog, Bell'alimento.  Both posts piqued my interest.  Both posts contain gorgeous photos.  Both posts compelled me to have to make this dish.  And, THUS.... I did.  And, my friends, am I ever glad I did!  So unbelievably simple to put together, I incorporated Ann's tweaks to the original recipe and tweaked a little myself.  I buttered the baking dishes and used a Meyer lemon for the juice and zest.  Meyer lemons aren't quite as tart as a traditional lemon.  The season is limited and so I incorporate them into my dishes as much as I can while they're available.  They were wonderful with the scallops.  The one thing I didn't do, and which I would encourage any and all who make this dish to do, is use fresh breadcrumbs.  They would have definitely added a wonderful texture to the baked scallops that finer dried breadcrumbs lacked.  At any rate, the sweetness of the scallops still shown through the rest of the ingredients.  Delectable!

Baked Scallops

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
zest of 1 lemon
flat leaf Italian parsley, chopped
1 pound bay scallops
sea salt and pepper, to taste
4 tablespoons fresh breadcrumbs, sauteed in 1 tablespoon butter

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Into a small bowl pce the olive oil, lemon juice, garlic,lemon zest, parsley and scallops. Season with salt and pepper. Stir well to combine. Set aside.

Butter 2 ramekins. Using a slotted spoon place enough scallops into each ramekin so that they’re 3/4 full or equally divided between the 2 ramekins. Top with 1 tablespoon breadcrumbs per ramekin and a 1/2 teaspoon butter each.  Bake until golden and bubbly, approximately 10-15 minutes.

Source: Thibeault's Table and Bell'alimento

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Peach Cobbler

Today I borrowed a recipe from Pam of ThreeManyCooks.  I don't remember many peach cobblers as a child... growing up in the northeast without air conditioning constituted very little summertime baking for my mom! Nonetheless, I've experienced many a peach cobbler since my arriving in one of the 'lower states'.  This is an easy and delicious version sure to grace my table again and again.  I halved the recipe and made 4 individual servings instead of a big dish of this wonderful dessert.  A little cream (heavy or ice) is the perfect accompaniment.  Thank you, Pam!

Peach Cobbler
Serves 4

4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon almond extract, divided
1 large peach

Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Put 1 tablespoon butter in each of 1-cup ramekins.  Place ramekins on a baking pan and set them in oven to melt.

Meanwhile, whisk flour, 3/4 cup of sugar, baking powder, and salt in small bowl. Whisk in milk and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract until smooth. Toss peaches with remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract. When butter has melted, remove pan holding ramekins from oven. Divide batter evenly among ramekins; arrange fruit over batter. Bake until batter turns golden brown, 40 to 45 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature with heavy cream or lightly sweetened whipped cream.

Source:  ThreeManyCooks

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Oregano Shrimp

It's not often I come home and cook after work.  To try and turn that trend around, I thawed some shrimp in the refrigerator today, hoping that would impel me to make dinner. Having made up my mind I was going to follow through with my plan, as soon as I walked in the house, I turned on the oven.  I threw a kaiser roll into the food processor and blitzed away with some herbs and a clove of garlic.  I had half of a tomato leftover from yesterday and decided to use that for Julia Child's Tomato Provencal.  So I scooped out the insides of the tomato and filled it with some of the bread crumb mixture, drizzled a little olive oil over it and put it in the oven.  Next I put some rice and water in a pot and got that going on the stove.  Then I set to cleaning the shrimp.  Using kitchen shears, I cut down the back of each little guy, then went back through them and removed most of the shell and the sand vein, rinsing as I went.  I had decided to use them in another easy recipe - Oregano Shrimp.  So simple, so good.  Dinner was done in about half an hour.  This is enough to make me think about cooking during the week more often!

(P.S. Sorry about the photo. It's late, too dark, and a less-than-ideal photo-taking situation!)

Oregano Shrimp

1-1/2 pounds fresh large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place shrimp in a 9 by 13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle shrimp with lemon juice. Combine bread crumbs, garlic, parsley, Parmesan, and oregano in a small bowl. Sprinkle bread crumb mixture over shrimp. Pour butter on top. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Serve over angel hair pasta or rice. Serves: 4 to 6

Source: Stop and Smell the Rosemary, copyright September 1996

Monday, September 6, 2010

Central Market's Pan-Fried Hatch Crabcakes

Recently, a friend from work, JoAnn, told me about a wonderful recipe she used for crabcakes.  It called for roasted Hatch peppers - I was intrigued!  She promised to bring me a copy of the recipe.  Lo and behold, sweet JoAnn not only brought a copy of the recipe but a bag full of roasted Hatch peppers!  Now I love foodies - everyone knows that.  But foodies who provide ingredients?  Top of the list!  Not as spicy as, say, a jalapeno but these peppers definitely have a bit of a kick to them.  And what a great addition to these crabcakes.  Not so hot as to overpower the delicious chunks of crab but another nice flavor element to the cakes.  I didn't have any Old Bay seasoning that the recipe called for (I thought I did or I would have picked some up), so I just omitted it and decided not to sub anything for it.  The crabcakes were great!  I can see making these in a miniature version as appetizers.  Tonight, however, I served them over an undressed bed of arugula which went perfectly with the cakes.  I halved the recipe, eating TWO for dinner, with two more leftover for a hoity-toity lunch at work tomorrow!  Thanks, JoAnn!

Central Market's Pan-Fried Hatch Crabcakes

1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over to remove cartilage or shell
4 green onions, green part only, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1-1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning (I omitted)
4 tablespoons plain dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup roasted Hatch peppers, peeled, seeded and diced (roasted poblanos would substitute nicely here)
1/4 cup mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste
1 large egg
2 cups panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1/2 cup vegetable or peanut oil for frying

Gently mix the crabmeat, scallions, herbs, Old Bay seasoning, bread crumbs, diced peppers and mayonnaise in a medium bowl, being careful not to break up the lumps of crab too much.

Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Carefully fold in the beaten egg with a rubber spatula until the mixture clings together.  Divide the mixture into cakes based on the size you desire, making sure that all cakes are about the same thickness.  Place the formed cakes on platter and cover with plastic wrap.  Chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.  Just before cooking, remove the cakes from the fridge.  Place the panko in a shallow dish and dredge the crabcakes in it.  Gently shake off any excess.  Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking.  Gently lay the crabcakes in the skillet.  Pan-fry until the outsides are crisp and browned, about 4 minutes per side.   Drain the cooked crabcakes on paper towels and serve immediately. (Recipe suggest serving the cakes with a pepper-spiked aioli.)
Blog Widget by LinkWithin