Posts Tagged ‘dinner’

What’s for Dinner: Whole Wheat Pancakes

August 25, 2008

I love bacon, eggs and pancakes. But, quite honestly, there’s a better chance that Ralph Nader will win the presidential election then there is of me getting up at the crack of dawn to fire up the griddle. Cereal and coffee are about all I can handle that early in the morning. So, sometimes, I make breakfast for dinner.

Breakfast for dinner is easy, cheap and you generally have all the ingredients laying around.

I’ve been trying to incorporate more whole grain into my family’s diet, and whole wheat pancakes are a great way to do that.

I bought a bag of King Arthur Whole Wheat Flour, and went in search of a whole wheat pancake recipe. I came across several warnings that whole wheat flour made pancakes that were too dense, and suggested using half wheat and half white flour or adding some other ingredients I didn’t have on hand.

I ignored all the warnings, and got out my Fannie Farmer cookbook with my favorite pancake recipe. I made them like I always do, but with whole wheat flour. How bad could it be, really?

Not bad at all. The whole wheat pancakes turned out fine. They weren’t dense at all, and raised up nice and fluffy. I don’t know what all the fuss was about. They have a slightly nuttier flavor that goes great with maple syrup, and they get just a little crispy on the outside. A nice touch.

The only difficulty I had was telling when they were done, since they’re already brown to begin with. You just have to keep a close eye on things.

Now, the whole wheat is good for you, but if you really want to turn this into a super food, pour some homemade blueberry sauce over them in place of your Aunt Jamima. Blueberries are full of antioxidants, and all sorts of other good stuff. Since you’re being so healthy, splurge a little and top it all off with some whipped cream. Homemade if possible.

Oh, yum!

Now, if you like these, make a double, triple, even quadruple batch, then freeze the left overs. You can pull one of two out of the freezer at a time, and warm them up in the microwave. I can handle that at 6 a.m.

Keep you extra blueberry sauce in a mason jar in the fridge for up to a month, or freezer for up to a year.

Whole Wheat Pancake Recipe

1/2 – 3/4 cup of milk

2 tbs butter, melted

1 egg

1 cup whole wheat flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tbs sugar

1/2 tsp salt

Lightly beat the milk, butter and egg in a mixing bowl. Mix the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt and add all at once to the first mixture. Stir just enough to dampen. Grease a frying pan, (non-stick cooking spray on a cast iron skillet works best) and set over moderate heat. Test the pan by sprinkling with a few drops of water. It’s ready when the water beads up and sizzles away.

Pour about 1/4 cup of batter into pan. Cook until cake is full of bubbles on top, and slighlty browned on bottom. Flip and cook until the other side is browned.

Blueberry Sauce Recipe

1 cup of water

1 cup of sugar

1 cup of blueberries

Dissolve sugar in water and bring to a boil. Add blueberries. Bring to boil again. Reduce heat and simmer until sauce is slightly thickened. If sauce seems too thin, add a little corn starch to thicken more.

Homemade Whipped Cream Recipe

1 cup heavy cream

2 tbs powdered sugar

2 tsp vanilla

Chill whisk or mixer beater and mixing bowl in the freezer for a few minutes. Pour the cream into the chilled bowl and whip until soft peaks form. Gradually whip in the sugar and vanilla.


What’s for Dinner: BBQ Pork Ribs

May 22, 2008

Several years ago I found a terrific BBQ Pork Rib recipe on-line. They were delicious. Better than any ribs I’d ever had in a restaurant. Then I lost the recipe in a move to a new house, and despite many searches since, can not find the same recipe on-line. So I’ve been trying to replicate it from memory for a while now. This last attempt came pretty close.

BBQ Pork Rib Recipe

Rack of St. Louis Style Pork Ribs

29 Oz. can Tomato Sauce

4 Tbs Honey

2 Tbs Brown Sugar

2 Tbs Chili Sauce

1 Tbs A 1 Steak Sauce

1 Tbs Worcestershire Sauce

2 Tbs Dijon Mustard

1/2 of large Onion, 1/4 finely chopped, 1/4 coarsely chopped

2 Stalks of Celery

4 Cloves of Garlic,  2 Chopped, 2 Pressed

1 tsp Black Pepper

1 tsp Salt

1/2 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar, divided

2 tsp Liquid Smoke

1 tsp Celery Seed

In a large stock pot bring to boil enough water to cover ribs. Add the celery stalks, coarsely chopped onion and chopped garlic. Add ribs. Par-boil one hour. Remove ribs from water. Reserve 3/4 a cup of the broth.

While ribs boil, prepare BBQ sauce. In a large sauce pan mix together tomato sauce, honey, brown sugar, chili sauce, A 1, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, finely chopped onion, pressed garlic, pepper, salt, 1/4 cup of vinegar, and liquid smoke. Bring to boil and simmer until slightly thickened.

Place par-boiled ribs in a large plastic bag or plastic storage container.  Measure one cup of BBQ sauce and add 3/4 a cup of the broth, 1/4 a cup of vinegar and a tsp of celery seed. Stir together and pour over ribs. Marinate 6 hours or over night. Remove ribs from marinade. Discard marinade.

Grill ribs over indirect heat for one hour. Turn every 15 minutes. After the third and fourth turn, coat the top side of the ribs with some of the remaining BBQ sauce. Serve the rest of the sauce warm, on the side with the finished ribs. 

I know the sauce has everything in it but the kitchen sink. I just kept adding ingredients that I knew are used in BBQ sauce until I got the right flavor. This makes a sweet, but tangy sauce.

Got any good Rib recipes? I’d love to try it. Leave a comment and share it with me.


What’s for Dinner: Oven-Fried Chicken

April 29, 2008

This sounded easy enough.

Oven-Friend Chicken Recipe

2 cups buttermilk

2 tbs Dijon mustard

2 1/4 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp garlic powder

1 1/2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp hot pepper sauce

8 split bone-in chicken breasts (skin removed)

2 1/2 cups crushed corn flakes

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

1/2 tsp ground poultry seasoning

1/2 tsp paprika

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

2 tbs vegetable oil

Whisk buttermilk, mustard, 2 teaspoons of salt, 1 tsp of garlic powder,  1 tsp of black pepper and hot sauce together in bowl. Add chicken. Turn to coat. Marinate one hour or overnight.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with foil. Coat foil with non-stick spray.

Toss corn flakes, bread crumbs, remaining garlic, black pepper, salt, poultry seasoning, paprika and cayenne in a shallow dish until combined. Drizzle oil over crumbs and toss until well coated. Removed chicken from marinade and dredge in crumb mixture one piece at a time. Press crumbs onto all side of chicken. Bake 35 to 45 minutes.

From Cook’s Country magazine

It went well until I got to the dredging part. That breading just did not want to stick. My pieces ended up about half covered. Then some of it fell off in the oven. And what fell off burned long before the chicken was done, making my house smelly and smoky. If you make these, definitely line your baking sheets with foil. I was out of foil. I soaked and scrubbed for days to get the burned-on corn flakes off.

All that said, the chicken did taste good.


What’s for Dinner: Grilled Garlic Parmesan Potatoes

April 17, 2008

Spring has at last come to West Michigan. I didn’t think we’d ever thaw out. Now that it’s warm and sunny, it’s time to bring out the grill. I think God intended meat to be cooked over an open flame. It just tastes better. 

The entree last night was simple, bratwurst. Brats gotta be grilled. Pan frying doesn’t do them justice. It’s a lot simpler to grill your meat when you can also prepare the side dish on the grill. No running back and forth between the kitchen and the patio to check on everything. So I threw together an easy dish I’ve made before, Grilled Garlic Parmesan Potatoes.

Grilled Garlic Parmesan Potato Recipe

Cut 4 large Idaho potatoes, skin on, into 1/4 inch slices. Put them in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Then sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Toss to coat. Cut off a large piece of aluminum foil, about 12-18 inches long. Spread the potato mixture on one half of the foil, leaving at least a half inch around the edges. Fold over the remaining foil and then fold the edges up together to make a packet. Place on the grill for about 45 minutes, turning once. After you turn it toward the end of cooking you can poke a hole in the packet and check the potatoes to see if they’re done. They should pierce easily with a fork.

I have to admit as I was eating these last night I kept thinking, “These don’t taste right. There’s something missing.” But I couldn’t figure out what. Then my husband got up and grabbed the Parmesan from the refrigerator. Oops! I forgot the Parmesan. Oh, well. They still turned out O.K. Next time I’ll remember.

What’s for Dinner: Dairy-Free, Eggless Chocolate Cake

April 11, 2008

O.K. We didn’t eat chocolate cake for dinner. I’m a slightly better mom than that. We had hamburgers. But I also made dessert last night. I don’t make dessert very often, because, honestly, my hips just don’t need it. However, I was craving chocolate cake yesterday afternoon. I was also due for a trip to the grocery store, so when I went to the fridge to gather the ingredients to make the cake, I realized I was out of eggs and had just enough milk to last until after dinner when I could get to the store.

I got on line and found several recipes for eggless cakes. I settled on the one which was also milkless and butterless. It turned out great. It tastes just fine. I can’t tell the difference between it and a regular chocolate cake. It’ very moist. The only thing I would change is the size of the pan. The recipe said to use a 9X13 baking dish, but that made for a very thick sheet cake, and I had to bake it longer than the recipe called for to get it done in the middle. I think it would have worked better in an 11×17 pan.

We are fortunate and don’t have any food allergies in our house, but this is a great cake alternative for anyone with dairy or egg allergies.

Eggless Chocolate Cake Recipe

4 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
3 cups white sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup vegetable oil
3 cups water
3 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C), grease and flour a 9×13 inch pan. In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, soda and salt. Add sugar and mix together. Add oil, water and vanilla and mix thoroughly. Pour into a 9×13 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

From All Recipes

I frosted the cake with Hot Coffee Frosting. Delicious! A recipe I also found on line.

Hot Coffee Frosting Recipe

1 (16 ounce) package confectioners’ sugar
3 tablespoons butter, softened
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup hot, brewed coffee

In a large bowl, combine confectioners’ sugar, butter, cocoa powder and vanilla. Beat on slow speed until ingredients are combined. While beating, slowly add hot coffee until desired consistency is achieved.

From All Recipes

I did use decaf coffee in the frosting. Chocolate cake, caffeine and a three-year-old = bad idea.