When the going gets busy, the busy get slow-cookin’

by , on
Apr 30, 2014
mommydo.com | Melt-in-your-mouth slow cooker ribs | quick and easy and delicious ribs you make in your crockpot

I’ve been crazy busy these past few *gulp* months. I even broke my own smug ‘takeout only once every 2 weeks rule’ last week and had takeout (or takeout leftovers) EVERY NIGHT.

So yesterday I hauled out the slow cooker to help pull me out of my ‘too busy to cook, to smug to eat any more takeout’ blues and try the recipe that produced these succulent beauties…

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Ribs? In a slow cooker? Oh yes I did.

The meat was from our local shop Rowe Farms (so good) and the recipe from Food Network magazine.

Easy. Seen here with oven fries and my sisters “secret” (bag of coleslaw stuff and Kraft Coleslaw dressing). WAAAAAYYYY better than sad leftovers.

The only hard part is hanging around waiting 6 hours while your house smells like a BBQ joint.

Enjoy!

Hoisin Baby Back Ribs

Ingredients1 cup hoisin sauce
1/3 cup rice vinegar (not seasoned)
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons Sriracha (Asian chile sauce)
1 2 -inch piece ginger, peeled and finely grated
3 cloves garlic, finely grated
3 2 -pound racks baby back pork ribs
1/2 cup ketchup
2 scallions (white and light green parts only), chopped
Coleslaw, for servingDirections

Combine 1/2 cup hoisin sauce, the vinegar, honey, soy sauce, Sriracha, ginger and garlic in a 6-quart slow cooker. Add the ribs and turn to coat. Cover and cook on low, 6 hours.

Preheat the broiler and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Transfer 1 cup of the liquid from the slow cooker to a medium bowl; whisk in the remaining 1/2 cup hoisin sauce and the ketchup. Transfer the ribs to the prepared baking sheet and brush both sides generously with the sauce. Broil, bone-side down, until browned and bubbling, 3 to 5 minutes.

Transfer to a cutting board and slice into individual ribs. Top with more sauce and sprinkle with the scallions. Serve with coleslaw.

© 2014 Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/hoisin-baby-back-ribs.print.html?oc=linkback

 

Drunken Italian Noodles and a Green Thumb

by , on
Feb 18, 2014
Mommydo.com | Drunken Italian Noodles |Easy pasta recipe that's perfect for entertaining | uses fresh ingredients | 30 min or less

I just realized I haven’t posted about these noodles.

MommyDo Drunken Italian Noodles

Wha? I can’t believe you could have been eating these for months and instead I’ve been keeping this AMAZING recipe to myself. I feel like a bit of a jerk about that.

How good are they?

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I now have a plant – AN ACTUAL PLANT – so I always have fresh basil to make this specific recipe.

So, so good.

I’m pulling the recipe from here at The Cozy Apron. If you try them and like them as much as I do – (you know, ‘go out and get the only plant you have AND keep it alive just so you can make the noodles.’ like them) – pop over and let Ingrid know.

Saucy, Italian “Drunken” Noodles with Spicy Italian Sausage, Tomatoes and Caramelized Onions and Red and Yellow Bell Peppers, with Fresh Basil
(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

• Olive oil
4 spicy Italian sausage links, casings removed
1 large onion, quartered and sliced thinly
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
½ teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 red bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced
1 orange bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, pressed through garlic press
½ cup white wine (I used Chardonnay)
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped
¼ cup fresh basil leaves, julienned, divided use
8 ounces Pappardelle noodles, uncooked

Preparation:

-Place a large, heavy-bottom pan or braising pot over medium-high heat; add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and once the oil is hot, crumble the spicy Italian sausage into the pan in small chunks (you want to keep the sausage fairly chunky), allowing it to brown in the oil for a few moments on each side; once the crumbled sausage is browned, remove it from the pan/pot with a slotted spoon and place into a small bowl to hold for a moment; next, add the sliced onion into the pan with the sausage drippings, and allow it to caramelize and become golden for roughly 5 minutes or so, stirring to keep it from burning (add a touch more olive oil, if necessary); once the onion starts to become golden, add the salt, Italian seasoning and cracked black pepper, and stir to combine, then add in the sliced bell peppers, and allow those to saute with the onion for about 2 minutes until slightly tender and golden; next, add in the garlic, and once it becomes aromatic, add in the white wine and allow it to reduce for a few moments, until almost completely reduced; next, add in the diced tomatoes with their juice, and return the browned spicy Italian sausage back into the pan, and gently fold the mixture to combine; allow it to gently simmer for about 3-4 minutes to blend the flavors, then turn the heat off; to finish the sauce, drizzle in about 2-3 good tablespoons of the olive oil to create a silky, rich flavor, and add in the chopped parsley and about half of the julienned basil; stir, and keep warm while you prepare the noodles.

-Prepare the pappardelle noodles according to instructions on package; then, drain the noodles very well, and add them directly into the sauce, using tongs to gently toss and combine the pappardelle noodles with the sauce and all of the ingredients in it; check the seasoning to see if you need to add any additional salt or pepper.

-To serve, add equal portions of the “Drunken” noodles to bowls, and garnish with a sprinkle of the remaining julienned basil; you can even top with shaved Parmesan, if desired, and an extra drizzle of olive oil.Enjoy!

Meal Plan Follow-Up: Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Tacos

by , on
Jan 28, 2014

On Sunday, I talked about my new commitment to meal planning.

I mentioned this weeks plan had me making Slow Cooker Pulled Chicken Tacos from this recipe from Dinner With Julie.

Let me tell you, it is both easy and delicious.

Pulled Chicken Tacos

The meat is so tender and so tasty. Husband couldn’t believe it was a 5-ingredient dish! Took me maybe 10 minutes to get it ready – and that includes pulling the recipe up online and digging out the slow cooker.

We made soft-shelled tacos with avocado, cheese (lactose-free for me), salsa and fresh tomato. It’s only as I type this that I remember that we had fresh lettuce too and I forgot all about it. It could have used a little cilantro but was still super yummy.

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Here is the recipe in case you’re too lazy to click the link. I think this one will be making it’s way into regular rotation.

From Dinner with Julie

Pulled Chicken Tacos

Adapted from Sweet Potato Chronicles

8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs – * I used boneless chicken breasts
5-6 garlic cloves, crushed or chopped *I pressed. I’m lazy like that.
1 – 1 1/2 cups salsa
1 Tbsp. chili powder (this sounds hotter than it actually is)
a pinch of salt

soft flour tortillas or hard taco shells
grated cheese, diced tomatoes, shredded lettuce, cilantro, guacamole, sour cream – whatever you like

Put the chicken, garlic, salsa, chili powder and salt in the bowl of a slow cooker and toss with tongs to combine everything; set it on low for 6-8 hours.

Pull the chicken apart with two forks and serve with flour tortillas or taco shells and your choice of additions. Serves 6.

A fan of the plan. The meal plan that is…

by , on
Jan 26, 2014

Do you plan your meals for the week? There was a time when I shopped almost daily, made what I felt like, ate out on a whim and watched groceries wither and die in the fridge.

Nowadays, I find having one less thing to worry about each day is really worth the time spent on Sundays making a plan for the week and shopping all at once. It very much helps to ensure have healthy, hot food on the table each night.

I generally plan for each meal to last two nights – either as the same meal or using the same base – so I’m only doing a ‘full cook’ every second night.

Like this delicious soup I made tonight. Mommydo’s Made Up Hamburger Tortellini Soup.

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It was delicious and easy. Take a look down below to see how to make some of your own.

We’ll have more tomorrow. Then Tuesday, I’m planning to make Chicken Tacos using this recipe except I’m gonna use boneless chicken breasts. Thursday, I’m making this shepherd’s pie. Saturday, I’m gunning for takeout!

The next step in my meal planning for me is to post the list and make the recipes available for my DH who claims he would cook more if he knew what to make and how to make it. I’m doubtful, but hey, it’s worth a shot.

What’s on the menu at your house this week?

RECIPE: Mommydo’s Made Up Hamburger Tortellini Soup.

Ground beef

Canned Tomato

Tomato Paste

Beef Broth

Celery

Onion

Carrot

Basil

Oregano

Chili Powder

Crushed Chilis

Salt

Pepper

Water

Tortellini (I use beef because of the lactose intolerant thing, but cheese would be delicious)

Very easy.

Brown the meat with about 1/2 an onion. Put it in the pot with a large can of diced tomatoes, a small tin of tomato paste, about 3 cups of beef broth, 1 chopped celery stalk and 1 chopped carrot. Include about 1/4 teaspoon of all the dried herbs and spices listed.

Simmer for about an hour. Add extra water as needed to ensure it stays soupy and not like spagetti sauce.

Toss in a couple of handfuls of Tortellini (I used the ‘fresh’ kind)

Increase the heat so the soup is boiling gently and cook until the Tortellini is nice and soft.

Is delicious served with parmesan cheese on top.

I would give anything for Pulled Pork right now.

by , on
Jan 21, 2014

If you’ve ever said this…and what you meant was “I’d give almost $20 to have someone else to all the work so I could just brown some pork, plunk it in my slow cooker, pour some of the most delicious pulled pork sauce $15.99 plus tax can buy over top and have delicious pulled-pork-without-the-work for dinner, this is your post. Next time you’re at the mall, go to Williams Sonoma. Buy this sauce for $15.99.

Mommydo Pulled Pork "Cheat"

Bring it home.

Brown a 2kg pork butt/shoulder.

Put it in your slow cooker.

Pour the sauce on.

Wait what seems like a really long time – 6-8 hours.

Pull the pork.

Enjoy!

Yes, I know it costs $15.99 but it’s EASY and it’s DELICIOUS. And sometimes I’m willing to pay that much for those two things.

 

What makes you feel like a winner?

by , on
Nov 5, 2013

For me, these days, it’s trying a new recipe and having it turn out to be as good as the picture looks. For one lucky blog commenter, it’s winning the stamp of their choice! For a little more on the stamp winner, scroll to the bottom of the post.

This weekend I tried 2 recipes from Pinterest and BOTH were great. There’s no point in showing my photos since the original posters’ look far more appetizing. I have to say both of these will be part of the regular rotation around here. They def get the MOMMYDO two thumbs up.

Both are slow cooker recipes. The first is from La Creme de la Crumb

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Tried it! So, so good. Like, leave-what-you’re-doing-right-now-and-go-to-the-store-and-get-what-you-need-and-go-home-and-put-it-in-the-slow-cooker-right-now kind of good. Quick and easy to prepare. Tastes super fab and is fancy enough company.

The second is from The Comfort of Cooking

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Crock Pot Honey Sesame Chicken.

Also super yummy and easy to make. The chicken is juicy and the sauce is sweet and tangy. We put both onto tortillas to make tacos one day and served on rice the next. 4 days worth of meals (with lunches) for less than 20 min prep each.

Awesome.

What’s also awesome is winning a stamp! There weren’t a lot of comments, and I didn’t count my sister. So, of the seven, it’s Lucky #7 that won.

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I’ll contact you to let you know you’ve won and give you the details. If you haven’t responded in 72 hours, I’ll pick a new winner.

Thanks to Lindsay at The Penny Paper Co. for donating our wonderful prize.

I’ll contact you with the details.

There’s nothing like…

by , on
Nov 3, 2013

the first whiff of the holiday season to make you miss the ones you’ve lost

Today is Starbucks Red Cup day – for me, that’s when the countdown to the holiday season starts in earnest. And, of course, there’s no time I miss my Dad more. This will be the 14th Christmas without him.

It’s true what they say, times does heal all wounds. At the same time, it makes the memories richer. Like my memory of a pot of hot soup on the first day there’s a chill in the air.

My dad wasn’t an excellent cook, but he wasn’t bad. And he could turn a few simple things into meals that still find a way to warm my heart.

Tonight I made his Tomato Macaroni Soup. I added a few little touches (garlic and broth) but it’s pretty much the same as he used to make back when I was too small to peek into the pot.

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Ray’s Simple Tomato soup

2 stalks celery

1 medium onion

1Tbsp butter

1 lg can diced tomatos

1 can water or broth (use the can from the tomatoes to measure)

1 can tomato sauce (or 1/2 jar)

A sprinkle of basil, oregano, fresh ground pepper or whatever vaguely italian seasoning you have on hand

1 crush clove of garlic

1 cup dry pasta (give or take – I eyeball it)

Chop the onion and celery. Place in microwave safe bowl with the butter and ‘nuke’ on high for 2 min 30 sec.

Meanwhile put the tomatoes and water or broth in a large pot. Throw in whatever spice you have on hand. Crush the garlic into the mixture. Add some tomato sauce from a tin or a jar.

Add the onion, celery, butter mixture to the pot.

Cook on medium-high heat until the soup begins to bubble.

Reduce the head and simmer for about 20 min.

After 20 min, add the pasta to the soup. Turn up the heat to achieve a gentle boil. You may need to add more water to maintain the ‘soup’ consistency once the pasta starts to cook.

Stir frequently to ensure the pasta doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot.

Let the pasta cook a little longer than al dente to get a nice squishy soup noodle.

Variations include adding salsa instead of sauce, adding tomato juice instead of water or broth, adding browned ground beef (making it ‘hamburger soup’), adding cooked  chicken and garnishing with cheese and avacado…the possibilities are endless.

Serve hot.

If you keep leftovers, be prepared to have the noodles suck up all the juice. You can make the pasta separately and combine the soup and the noodles in each bowl – which does improve the state of the dish on the second day if you like a soupy soup. I usually just add water or broth the second day to rejuvenate the soup factor.

To me this is the ultimate comfort food. I hope you find some comfort here too.

Thanksgiving – the one where we stabbed the turkey.

by , on
Oct 15, 2013

Well, stabbed it with a rotisserie stick. I’m gonna call it Dizzy Turkey. And I’m also going to call it delicious.

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I’m thankful that we had the brilliant idea to stick the bird on the grill. I’m also thankful that there wasn’t much fanfare this year.

There was food…lots of food…Dizzy Turkey, my Dad’s Secret Stuffing (oven style as many sources recommend not stuffing a rotisserie turkey), mashed potatoes, candied yams, squash, ginger-maple roasted parsnips and carrots, broccoli, homemade bread machine bread, gravy and even homeade cranberry sauce. Oh, and pumpkin pie, fresh baked by my  mom.

A right feast. Which may seem like overkill to some, considering Husband and I shared this bountiful meal side by side at our kitchen island while the boy flitted around and the girl slept. But it was just fine with me.

I have a great deal to be thankful for. This year especially…as things could have turned out so differently. And yet, it’s a complicated thanks. Very personal. Still a little raw. Filled with hope for the future, but mindful of the past and how easily this could have been a very different kind of post. I’m still in awe of the miracle of my little girl. That she was possible. That she survived to be born. That she continues to surprise. Thankful for my little man. Our home – despite it’s challenges. Husband – who is up feeding baby as I type this.

There’s just so much. Too much. It makes me feel a little dizzy.

Kind of like this guy…

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Dizzy Turkey

(The uncomplicated way – made up by us)

Bring the bird up to room temp.

Prep it for cooking – rinse, pat dry, remove anything that may be lurking inside.

Stuff 3-5 unpeeled cloves of garlic into the cavity.

Place it on the spit as directed by your instructions.

Generously rub it with olive oil and ground sea salt and pepper.

Place it on the BBQ and fiddle around with the weight until you get it balanced right (which for us took about 30 min).

Place a drip tray under the bird. We cut a whole onion and placed it in the tray along with 1/2 a bottle of beer.

Cook using the back burner on med-high (around 350).

Baste every 30 min. (We added beer to the pan as it evaporated then added chicken stock when the beer bottle started to run low)

Cook to an internal temperature of 165. (about 2.5  hours for an 12 lb bird)

30 Garlic Brisket

by , on
Sep 30, 2013

I was planning on making my bestie’s Roast Beef Dip sandwiches and called to ask for the 100th time what cut of beef she uses. She told me (eye of round) but then mentioned I should forget about beef dip and make brisket. 30 garlic cloves in one slow cooker brisket. As she is a far better cook than I, rarely do I not heed her advice.

So off to get brisket I went. Of course, I used the trusty interweb to find a recipe. And it was DELICIOUS!

mommydo.ca_30 garlic brisket

I found this Better Homes and Gardens recipe on google and went for it.

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I hope you can read that, as I pulled it from Google books here and have no desire to type it out again.

I have to admit I didn’t make the Gremolata though is sounds nice too.

The meat was tender and flavourful. There was definitely a garlic flavour but it was mild garlic – not that crazy, overpowering garlic taste you’d expect from 30 cloves!

Two thumbs way up al the way around here. I think this one will be entering regular rotation!

PS: Hopefully this photo is more appetizing. I’m working on the pictures for all our sakes. I can only do so much until the cavalry arrives with help for when good food photos go bad.

Quick Eats

by , on
Sep 24, 2013

A big theme in our kitchen these days is fast food. Not like ‘can I have some fries with that’ fast food. More ‘I want to cook good eats without spending my day in the kitchen’ fast.

So I found a recipe on Pinterest that inspired this creation:

Lasagna Veloce

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This one pan Lasagna is made on the stove top in a skillet in about 30 min if you have some sauce handy.

So easy. Take some thin meat sauce and spread it in the bottom of a skillet.

(I made from scratch but you can always add some browned ground beef to jar sauce to save time.)

Add a layer of lasagna noodles. Then a layer sauce and some fresh spinach. Then noodles. Then put lots of little small bits of noodles around the edges so you get lots of tasty noodles…then cover with a little more sauce.

Add about 3/4 of a cup of water, cover and simmer for about 20 min.

I opened the lid and double checked the noodles a few times. I added more water to one skillet and turned the other up a little to make sure the liquid was bubbling around the noodles.

After the noodles are cooked, dob some cottage cheese or ricotta onto the noodles and cover with mozzarella cheese.

Put the lid back on and cook for another 5 min.

I also added a little parmesan cheese at this point.

To finish, I put the skillet in the over and broiled the Lasagna Veloce for a few minutes to get that crusty “baked in the oven lasagna taste”.

For a lactose free option:

As you read I made 2 skillets. In the second I used lactose-free cottage cheese and goat cheese mozzarella. As parmesan is lactose free, I added that too.

It’s really, really as good as the real thing. It’s currently my favourite food.

I have some photos of the steps, but once again, my food photos aren’t fab. Honestly, it tastes better than it looks in my pics.

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