A fantastic dip for Super Bowl Sunday

The nice people at Pace sent me some bottles of picante and asked for a Super Bowl recipe in return. I immediately thought of my friend Diane's "Dump Dip" which is addicting. Actually addicting is an understatement. This stuff is great and it's served with Frito Scoops which are an essential dip component.

You will NOT have leftovers!

I modified her recipe a bit. I used low fat sour cream because the regular was sold out. She also uses a packet of prepared taco seasoning but I mix my own. I have every spice under the sun and usually do not buy mixes. Her recipe calls for a bottle of salsa but I used picante.

One rule-you MUST serve this with Frito Scoops!

Dump Dip
1 16-oz carton sour cream
Taco seasoning mix(recipe below)
1 16-oz jar medium salsa
2 8-oz pkgs sharp shredded cheddar cheese

Mix sour cream and taco seasoning mix. Add salsa and mix. Stir in cheese. Refrigerate until serving. Serve with Frito Scoops.

Taco Seasoning Mix
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

I took a picture but this stuff does not photograph well. I probably could have sprinkled green onions or cilantro on it. Anyway here it is.

IMG_0335 by you.

Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Cookies

image_1 by you.

My very generous parents bought me a Kitchen Aid mixer for Christmas. She's stainless and her name is Tabitha. I plan on baking more whole grain breads and I'm definitely buying the meat grinder and grain mill attachments.

I wanted to break her in but we had so many leftovers I really didn't want to add to the food stock until we had gotten rid of them. But my boyfriends favorite cookie is peanut butter. I was perusing recipes and realized we had all the ingredients on hand. And since they're his favorite, more of them will probably go to his waistline instead of mine. Heh-heh.

I used THIS recipe from Bon Appetit's January 1998 issue because the reviewers mentioned how easy and chewy they are. They were definitely chewy to me but Jim said they we very good but could be chewier. I told him to just eat the dough. I definitely recommend the recipe.

The only change I made is using my silpat instead of parchment paper.

Sukhamvit Soi Five Fried Chicken-Better than Southern Fried?

image_1 by you.

Supposedly this is one of the BEST fried chicken recipes EVER! I found it in The Atlantic's April 2009 issue and knew I had to try it as a lover of Thai food and fried chicken. The article is pretty good too.

I'm no fried chicken connoisseur. I've never even been to KFC. My experience is limited to my mom's old school recipe which involved dredging in flour, salt and pepper and a big chunk of Crisco. I loved that chicken but as soon as Oprah and her chef Rosie popularized baking chicken with a cornflake coating it became an endangered species in my world. I don't think mom used the cornfalkes but she did start baking the chicken. It was good but not the same.

My biggest beef with frying is the mess. And the fact I never fail to splatter myself even with my splatter screen. But I wanted the chicken so I bought myself a deep fryer. When I brought it home I think my boyfriend was more excited. He declared we had to "break it in" and ran to the store for a bag of potatoes and some oil and made fries. By the way, Emeril's Perfect French Fries are pretty darn good. He's planning on frying more things. He says he wants fried food once a week. I think once a month, if that often, is a better idea.

I have to admit the chicken is pretty awesome! The leftovers are calling my name. But I don't know if I'd compare it to southern fried as it's a totally different taste.

I found coriander with the roots at the Asian grocery store. I think it's a shame that US grocery stores cut them off as they're full of flavor. If you can't find them it's OK to use all stems. But get the roots if you can.

If you don't have a mortar and pestle you can use a food processor but use a mortar and pestle if you can. I bought mine at the Asian grocery store. Much cheaper than Sur La Table. It weighs a ton but I love it and pounding things to a paste is great therapy.

image_1 by you.

Note it is recommended that the chicken marinate overnight!

Sukhamvit Soi Five Fried Chicken Recipe HERE.

I served my chicken with jasmine rice and steamed vegetables, along with some Sriracha for dipping.

Healthy Ham and Bean Soup

image_1 by you.

I got this well reviewed recipe from the January issue of Runners World magazine. It's a Pam Anderson(no not THAT Pam Anderson!) recipe. I do have some of her cookbooks and enjoy them and was surprised she runs marathons.

This was super easy. For the Italian seasonings I used dried basil, marjoram and oregano. I seasoned further with a little salt and fresh ground black pepper. I served the soup with a salad and whole wheat dinner rolls.

My boyfriend is cooking a ham for Christmas Eve dinner so I'll probably be making another soup with the bone.

"Hearty Ham and White Bean Soup"

1 TBS olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced into medium pieces
1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
2 large carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise and sliced thin
1/2 cabbage, cored, cut into bite-size shreds
12 ounces lean ham steak, diced into small pieces
1 quart chicken broth
1 14.5-ounce can petite-diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cans (15 oz. each) white beans, undrained
2 TBS fresh parsley, chopped

Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a soup kettle. Add the onion, saute until soft and golden, about 5 minutes. Add the Italian seasoning and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the remaining ingredients, then bring to a full simmer, skimming any foam that rises to the surface. Reduce heat to low, simmer gently (partially covered) until the vegetables are just cooked and flavors blended, about 15 minutes. Stir in the parsley; cover and let stand 5 minutes. Serves 6.

Boeuf Bourguignon

image_1 by you.

It's a chilly rainy day and the Julie and Julia DVD is going to be released on Tuesday. A perfect day to make Boeuf Bourguignon.

I am thisclose to being moved to my new hut and will start cooking more consistently in January. At least that's the plan.

I've never been a big beef stew fan but I do like this. It makes the house smell great and it's easy.
This dish is even better the next day!

I used THIS version from the September 1999 issue of Bon Appetit. I didn't use shiitake mushrooms. I used cremini. And I thought I had sage left over from Thanksgiving but apparently I used it all so that was left out as well. Nobody commented that it could have used sage or should have had shiitake's.

I served it over mashed potatoes and with sauteed brussels sprouts.

I do suggest making the recipe over 2 days if you can. This recipe uses a lot of pots and pans. More when you make sides. I hate washing pots and pans.