Cooking with Connie
I'll start off my post by wishing our eldest granddaughter Kaylee, a very Happy 14th Birthday - We love you!
This was as far as I got the day I started this post two days ago, but it's an important message and I wanted to share it instead of starting over.
Last month I asked if you had any good recipes to share with me. Roxanne LeBlanc shared her Cajun Meatloaf recipe. Meatloaf is one of Larry's favorites, so he was eager for me to give this a whirl. This does make a big batch, but we're all about leftovers. In fact we got 4 meals out of this. Thanks Roxanne!
Nearly all Cajun recipes call for the Trinity, usually in equal parts. Diced onion, celery and bell pepper.
1 ½ pound ground beef and ½ pound ground pork
1 ½ fine bread crumbs
½ cup evaporated milk
½ cup catsup
2 slightly beaten eggs
Butter for sautéing
¾ cup diced onion
¾ cup diced celery
¾ cup diced bell pepper
¼ cup green onion tops only
1 Tbls minced garlic
1 Tbls Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp each cayenne, black pepper, cumin, nutmeg, salt to your preference (Mix in small bowl)
Sauté in butter the trinity, green onion tops, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce and the spices. Add milk and catsup. Stir until well mixed. Set aside and let cool.
Mix beef and pork, eggs and bread crumbs. Add cooled vegetable mixture. Mix well.
In large pan form loaf about 12" long X 6" and 1 1/2 " thick. Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes
This makes a large meatloaf. I usually freeze ½ of it for a future meal.
I found that a 30 minute baking time was not long enough, so I cut the loaf in half and continued cooking half at 450 degrees for 15 minutes and the other half I wrapped and froze for another meal which was then fully cooked when reheated at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.
I've watched a couple of cook along videos that were fun. Although I didn't actually cook along but watched along, then made later.
We watch a Vlog by Tread The Globe (a UK couple), they mentioned a cook along they were going to do, so I watched along. Tikka Masala was on the menu. Unfortunately I didn't take one picture! But here's the link for the recipe https://www.harighotra.co.uk/chicken-tikka-masala-recipe. It was delicious. I loved working with all of the different spices. I did have to substitute a lot of the spices but it still turned out great.
I caught a watch party on Facebook one day on how to make Raviolis by Michael Symon. I was surprised how easy the dough was to make and handle, by hand. I improvised my filling by using some basil in a tube and pistachios chopped together to use as my pesto. It made a lot of filling so I have some frozen for another use. I also have about a dozen raviolis leftover, that I froze. I got tired of making ravioli so another use for the pasta, was to slice the dough into strips to use as noodles. Here's the link for this recipe https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/michael-symon/ravioli-with-fridge-raid-filling-and-brown-butter-8636702
Kneading this thick dough by hand for about 8 minutes, what a workout! A couple of notes on making these. While I thought rolling the dough out to the max length of 10 inches would ensure that the hole would not disappear when they rose, was not what I expected. These really didn't rise that much so I had a whole lot of hole. Also, don't bother sprinkling the Everything Bagel on top of the bagel before baking. It just flakes off when you slice the bagel in half. On the bagels I baked plain, after toasting and spreading with cream cheese, I then sprinkle the topping on. Tastes just as good without the mess. Here's the link for this recipe. http://www.wildyeastblog.com/sourdough-bagels/
I had a lot of sourdough starter I wanted to use and found this pasta recipe. After having success with the Ravioli dough, I thought I would make some pasta noodles. They turned out very good, and I liked that this recipe didn't use as many egg yolks as the other recipe did. I made a full batch but cut in half and froze half of the dough to make some noodles later. Here's the link for this recipe. https://makeitdough.com/2019/05/14/sourdough-discard-pasta/
We arrived in Ohiopyle State Park in Pennsylvania two weeks ago. We didn't do too much our first weekend here as it was Memorial Day weekend and there were a lot of people, so we stayed home. On Monday we noticed that many people left the campground so we ventured out to explore nearby Fort Necessity, Larry's post has a lot of the history explained. It was a lovely day out with a picnic and exploring. On our way home we thought we would go find the Ohiopyle's post office since we semi-expected our missing mail to be forwarded there from Verona, VA. Yikes, what a zoo. We learned that the town is a popular place for white water rafting on the Youghiogheny River and with all of the roadwork being done, we were stuck in bumper to bumper traffic.
Friday we ventured out again to check on our missing mail. We went mid-morning and there was no traffic or crowds. We were able to easily get a parking spot to view the rapids and we stopped at a parking area to view Cucumber Falls. We stick to home on the weekends as the campground filled up again, However, on Monday we headed to the post office again looking for our mail. This time we stopped at an area that has a natural slide rock. We could just imagine how crowded this place would be on a hot weekend. A bit of good news, Larry received an email from our mail forwarding service (Escapees in Texas) that our lost mail ws retruned back to them, yeah! Fingers crossed we'll get it sometime next week at our next stop.
Yesterday (June 3rd), we made a trip to Johnstown for an oil change with a couple of side trips. But I'll leave that for our next posting....