Sunday, June 21, 2009

Speedy Baked Beans

Husband made burgers last night! One of my favorite burger accompaniments is baked beans, and I thought Betty would have some good recipes.

Turned out I was right! I made some Speedy Baked Beans, and I hate to say it, but they out-shined the hamburgers (although that was my fault. I bought those pre-formed patties that are guaranteed to disappoint. They're just so convenient!) . I thought we would have leftover beans for lunch the next day, but we just scarfed 'em down. Oh well. Sorry for the lack of picture in this post, but by the time I remembered to take one, the beans were gone!

Recipe below, in my own words

Speedy Baked Beans


4 strips of bacon, diced
1 large onion, minced
1 large can of baked beans
1 tsp yellow mustard
1/2 cup chili sauce

Preheat oven to 350. Saute bacon and onions till bacon is crisp and onions are translucent. Stir in remaining ingredients. Pour into greased 1 1/2 qt casserole, and bake 1 hour or until beans are brown and bubbly. Serve.

Texas Hash

Okay, so I cheated on this one a little. Husband makes dinner once a week, and since this was the quickest, easiest thing on the menu this past week, I assigned it to him. I helped though! Since my onion and bell pepper chopping skills are amazing, I chopped 'em up for him. And I chopped 'dem veggies good!

The Texas Hash turned out pretty delish. The recipe gives you the option to use either noodles or rice, and Husband opted for rice. It would be pretty awesome with noodles too, especially some elbow macaroni.

Overall, this is a pretty good dish for a busy weeknight. It reminds me of the hot lunches they used to serve in school, but, you know, better. You could probably improve the recipe by adding some oregano or something, since the only spices in this are chili powder, onions, and pepper. Still tasty though!

Recipe below, not verbatim. Also, the original recipe called for things like, "2 cups cooked tomatoes (#1 can)" I don't really know what that means, and can sizes have changed since 1950, so Husband and I just sort of guesstimated.

Texas Hash


3 large onions, diced
1 large bell pepper, minced
3 tsp oil
1 lb ground beef
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup uncooked rice (or two cups uncooked noodles)
1 tsp chili powder
2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Preheat over to 350. Cook onions and pepper in oil until translucent. Add ground beef and brown. Stir in remaining ingredients. Pour into greased 2 qt casserole. Cover and bake 45 minutes. Remove cover and bake another 15 minutes. Serve.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Strawberry Salad Glace

I thought I'd start things off with a little something to pay homage to my roots--the Midwest. Now, my family RARELY made Jello, and we certainly never made Jello molds or Jello salads. Jello was something children or sick people (or college students who wanted to do shots quietly) ate. Jello was not common in my house, however, I did see it quite a bit at potlucks and such when I was growing up. It wasn't until I was about 20, though, that I learned that Jello was not just a dessert for a lot of people. In fact, many Midwesterners eat it as a side dish, including my husband's parents. We went to spend Thanksgiving with them the first year Husband and I were dating, and his grandma brings two flavors of Jello. I thought she brought them for dessert, but no, they were a SIDE! It was all very strange to me, and I must admit that I still haven't grasped the concept of Jello as something that share the plate with the entree.

Well, like I said, I wanted to do something with gelatin, so I picked Strawberry Salad Glace. Holy cow, you guys, it was amazing! I mean, I though I would like it, but I really, really love it. The Jello is all nice and slippery, but then it's like, "Oh, hello! A little ball of cream cheese and walnuts! Where did you come from?!" From heaven, that's where! You know how with cheesecake you get a lot of cream cheese and a little strawberry? This is a lot of strawberry and a little cream cheese, which can be really nice sometimes. The best part is that since it's a salad, you can give yourself permission to eat the leftovers for lunch the next day and not feel bad. I mean...if you wanted to...not that I ever would...

Anyway, on to the recipe. The recipe for Strawberry Salad Glace is one that takes up a whole page in the BC 1950's cookbook, and is complete with step-by-step pictures (black and white, of course). The recipe below is not verbatim.

Strawberry Salad Glace

Ingredients and equipment

One box of strawberry Jello (the big box, not the little one)
Cream cheese
Crushed walnuts
One pint fresh strawberries, hulled and cut into halves or quarters.
Some sugar
Ring mold or bundt cake pan (lightly greased)

1. Mix Jello according to directions. Refrigerate two hours or until Jello is consistency of egg whites.

2. Shape six ounces of cream cheese into one-inch balls. Roll in walnuts and place evenly around ring mold.

3. Cover with a layer of lightly sugared strawberries.

4. Pour cooled Jello over strawberries and cheese. Chill until set (a few hours).

5. Unmold onto large serving plate.

Betty suggested filling the center hole with mayonnaise mixed with whipped cream. I didn't have any whipped cream, so I just used mayonnaise. Normally I wouldn't do that, but Betty said I ought.

All in all, it was very good. The mayo added a creamy twang, which surprised me. Husband liked it too! Good job Betty!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Sorry Betty

I've been feeling guilty recently. I started this blog with the intent of cooking my way through Betty Crocker, but I've been neglecting it. I've been busy with the move and finishing up school, plus I keep seeing all of these great recipes that AREN'T in BC. I'm sorry.

The good news is that in one week, I'll be officially done with school. Forever. I'll be the owner of a Graduate Certificate in Technical Communication, and I'm very proud of that. Also, I am making a pledge to make at least 3 recipes a week from BC, starting next week. If anyone wants me to make something that you think may be in the BC cookbook, just tell me, and I'll give it a shot. Heck, if anyone wants me to make something that ISN'T in BC, I'd be happy to make it as well.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Feed a Budgie, Make 'em Pudgy

I turned 25 yesterday. I can now rent a car in every state and (hopefully) get cheaper car insurance. I've moved from one little age range box on product registration forms to another, and I'm okay with that!

Husband gave me an awesome birthday. We went to the Point Defiance Zoo near our apartment where we fed some sheep, goats, and budgies. It's a very nice zoo, kind of small, but I like that. They had a bunch of seahorses and jellyfish, which I always enjoy. I think if I ever have a saltwater aquarium, I'm going to have a few seahorses. Anyway, the zoo was awesome. It wasn't too hot, and the crowds were surprisingly small, considering it was a Saturday.

After the zoo we saw Up, which was pretty good. Not my favorite Pixar, and the flying dogs were a bit much, but it was enjoyable. It made me cry a couple of times. Afterward we went to a Mexican place down the street called Moctezuma's. The food was tasty, but the margaritas were deeeelish! I love a good marg.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

The Great Move

Aye aye aye, big news! So, the Husband and I moved to Washington, much to the sadness of our parents. Between me graduating and him getting laid off, we decided now would be a good time to move to a place we've always wanted to live--SEATTLE! Of course, Seattle apartment prices are a bit high for two unemployed people, so we set up camp in a suburb of Tacoma, which isn't far away. It's very nice here. The weather is nice and mild, there's a huge dog park for Lux, and the people are very nice. Oh, and there's this great locally owned grocery store nearby that has locally grown produce and a really, really awesome meat counter. Give me a great grocery store and I'm happy as a kitten in a patch of 'nip!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

And so it begins

So a couple of weeks ago my sort-of-aunt-and-uncle sent me a wedding present. It was a Betty Crocker cookbook circa Long Ago, and looks like this:

Needless to say, I'm in love with it. It's filled with not only some awesome looking recipes, but with all kinds of crazy stuff like aspics, bizarre appetizers, and about a million different uses for Jello.

Thus, I decided to start a blog to document my journey through culinary space and time. I will work my way through this cookbook in no particular order, and on the way I may post about other recipes I find and what is happening in my life. Enjoy.