international

Kung Pao Chicken

Chinese Entree

KUNG PAO CHICKEN

INGREDIENTS

MARINADE

2 chicken breasts
2 cloves garlic
1 stalk green onion
1 tablespoon soy sauce (2 more tablespoons later)
1½ tablespoons cornstarch (1 teaspoon more later)
½ teaspoon ginger
¼ teaspoon Poultry MagicTM spice (¼ teaspoon more later)
2 teaspoons rice wine
1½ tablespoons water

SAUCE

1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon malt vinegar
¼ teaspoon Poultry MagicTM spice
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil

4 red chiles
½ cup unsalted roasted peanuts
1½ tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vegetable oil

SPECIAL UTENSIL

wok or skillet

Serves 4. Takes 50 minutes.

PREPARATION OF MARINADE

Cut chicken into 1-inch cubes. Mince garlic. Dice green onion. Mix 1½ tablespoons cornstarch, garlic, green onion, ginger, ¼ teaspoon poultry spice, rice wine, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and water. Cover all sides of the chicken cubes with this mixture. Set aside for at least 30 minutes.

PREPARATION OF SAUCE

Combine 1 teaspoon cornstarch, malt vinegar, ¼ teaspoon poultry spice, salt, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil in 2nd mixing bowl. Set aside.

FINAL PREPARATION

Cut red chiles in half, remove seed, and mince (I cannot say strongly enough, WEAR GLOVES OR WASH YOUR HANDS THOROUGHLY WITH SOAP after touching the chiles and their seeds. They make your skin burn. My gosh, they cause pain. Don’t rub a throbbing temple or wipe sweat from your upper lip immediately after touching red chiles and their seeds. Your face will be on fire. And guy chefs, this is a really bad time to scratch your balls.)

Put unsalted peanuts and 1½ tablespoons vegetable oil in wok. Sauté at 350 degrees until peanuts start turning golden brown. Stir frequently. (The golden brown phase is astonishingly short. The following dark brown/black state is forever.)

Add the coated chicken cubes. Sauté at 350 degrees. Fry for 2 minutes or until chicken is done or no longer pink inside. Stir and turn cubes frequently.

Add red chiles and 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Sauté at 350 degrees and stir until the peppers turn dark. Add soy/malt vinegar/sugar/sesame oil sauce. Cook until sauce thickens. Stir frequently.

Thank the person who washes and cleans after this meal. If you are both the cook and cleaner, sit down, have a cold root beer, and admire the halo above your head.

TIDBITS

1) If all strange dishes taste like chicken, why not have chicken?

2) Kung Pao chickens are much milder than their more peppery cousins, Kung Fu Chickens.

3) Peppers that look similar to each other can vary greatly in spiciness. So, keep that in mind when you and a bunch of friends from Madison, Wisconsin travel to St. Louis, Missouri to see two classmates get married and you all stop in a restaurant that serves free peppers.

4) Throat germs don’t like peppers either. Hah, take that!

5) Some people think that cuisine near the Equator is filled with peppery dishes because food didn’t keep well there before refrigeration. I think people in Cuba eat more peppers than the Swedes because peppers are grown in Cuba and not in Sweden.

 

Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Jamaican Sliders

Jamaican Entree

JAMAICAN SLIDERS

INGREDIENTS – SALSA

1 mango
1 papaya
⅔ red bell pepper, diced (⅓ more later)
⅔ red onion (⅓ more later)
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons lime juice

INGREDIENTS – BURGER

1 pound ground beef
½ cup bread crumbs
⅓ red onion, diced
⅓ cup sweet-and-sour sauce
⅓ red bell pepper
1 tablespoon Jamaican jerk seasoning
1 egg white

12 lettuce leaves
2 tomatoes
12 mini-hamburger rolls

SPECIAL UTENSIL

electric skillet

GENERAL PREPARATION

Peel, remove seeds, and dice mango. Peel, core, and dice papaya. Remove stem, seeds, and whitish innards from red bell pepper. Dice red onion. Chop cilantro. Cut tomatoes into 12 slices. Crack open egg. Keep egg white.

(You’re on your own with the egg yolk. You could serve it to someone special for breakfast and say, “Dearest, this is all I could afford for breakfast. The money I would have spent on an entire egg is going toward a Caribbean cruise.”)

PREPARATION – SALSA

Put diced mango, diced papaya, ⅔ of the diced bell pepper, ⅔ of the diced red onion, cilantro and lime juice in mixing bowl. Mix vigorously with fork. This is tasty by itself.

PREPARATION – BURGER

Combine in mixing bowl: ground beef, breadcrumbs, sweet-and-sour sauce, (Avoid bootlegged “sweat-and-sour sauce.”), ⅓ of the diced bell pepper, ⅓ of the diced red onion, Jamaican jerk seasoning, and egg white. Mix with hands. (Wash hands before serving or approaching large dog.)

Make 12 patties to be about the size of your mini-burger rolls. Put patties in electric skillet and heat at 350 degrees. Cook for about 7 minutes on each side or until thoroughly cooked. Be sure to flip them over gently with a spatula. They can crumble.

(You might not be able to resist tasting a patty. But don’t let anyone see you. Because when you say, “It was going to kill you. And the only way to stop a murderous Jamaican slider patty is to eat it,” they will surely scoff.)

ASSEMBLING

Put a lettuce leaf, tomato slice, and a patty on the bottom bun and place 2-to-3 tablespoons, about 1/12 of the salsa on the top bun. Put it all together.

Enjoy! But respect this burger. You’ll taste the spices after the second bite. Serve with a nice, cooling drink.

TIDBITS

1) Some Jamaicans believe an evil spirit known as “Rolling Calf” haunts people at night. They look like cows, have eyes of fire, and are the reincarnated spirits of butchers.

2) So, it’s probably better to be a data-entry person in Jamaica. You’ll stay put in the afterlife.

3) Tofu cooks are also safe. There have been no recorded instances of tofu haunting anywhere in the world.

4) Jamaica has more Olympic medals than Portugal, Taiwan, Saudi Arabia, Iceland, and Kuwait combined.

5) So does the United States.

6) The Vatican City and Monaco have done poorly in these competitions.

7) In fact, I can’t even think of one internationally known pole vaulter from the Vatican.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Italiano Breakfast Sandwich

Italian Breakfast

ITALIANO BREAKFAST SANDWICH

INGREDIENTS

6 pairs of sourdough muffins top and bottom
6 slices provolone cheese
½ cup pasta sauce
6 eggs
¼ teaspoon basil
¼ teaspoon parsley
½ teaspoon garlic salt
no-stick cooking spray.

PREPARATION

Mix eggs, basil, parsley, and garlic salt in small bowl. Spray saucepan with no-stick cooking spray in hopeful attempt to prevent any egg bits sticking to the pan.

Scramble eggs and spices in pan. Add pasta sauce and scramble some more. Cook until eggs are done. This is a matter of taste.

Toast sourdough muffins. (To your health, sourdough muffin.) Adorn bottom muffin with scrambled eggs. Top with a slice of provolone. Complete sandwich with top muffin half. Mange bene.

TIDBITS

1) The sourdough biscuits are in honor of the hardy Italian restaurateurs who came to San Francisco during the Gold Rush to feed the hungry 49ers.

2) Tidbit 1 is quite possibly true.

3) Provolone cheese did not originate in Provo, Utah.

4) This dish symbolizes the major theme of this cookbook, “Cooking With What’s Handy.”

5) A “theme” was also a major administrative district of the Byzantine Empire.

6) “Parsley” is easy to misspell. Thank goodness, it was never on a spelling test.

7) Garlic is thought to ward off vampires. As far I can tell, it works. We have lots of garlic cloves and garlic salt, and vampires never bother our home.

8) Vampires might like basil, but how would we know? We’ve already frightened them off.

9) Basil Rathbone was famous for his movie portrayal of Sherlock Holmes.

10) Eggs sure can stick to pans, can’t they?

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Hot Dog Provencale

French Entree

HOT DOG PROVENÇALE

INGREDIENTS

2 6 ounce to-be-baked baguettes
2 garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon marjoram
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon tarragon
1 teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon basil
½ teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon parsley
¼ teaspoon black pepper
6 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
4 frankfurters, preferably Hebrew NationalTM
4 slices Swiss cheese

PREPARATION

Preheat to temperature shown on baguette bag or 375 degrees. Cut baguettes in half along their width. Cut each half baguette again in half, this along its height. Do the same for the other baguette. You should now have 8 baguette slices.

Mince garlic cloves. Remove stem from bay leaves and chop them into little bits.

Combine in mixing bowl: garlic, bay leaves, marjoram, rosemary, tarragon, thyme, basil, oregano, parsley, pepper, garlic, mustard, and mayonnaise. Stir with fork until blended.

Spread mixture equally onto the 8 baguette slices. Put 4 frankfurters onto 4 baguette slices. Put slices on cooking tray and put in oven. Cook according to instructions on baguette-loaf bag or 8 minutes at 375 degrees. Put a half slice of Swiss cheese on each baguette slice. Put cooking tray back in oven. Cook for 2 more minutes. The cheese should be melted and the bread crust golden brown. (This paragraph inspected by editor no. 2.)

Remove baguette slices and assemble. Your guests will come running to the dinner table with cries of “Oh, la, la,” and “C’est magnifique.” If they do not, use your guillotine.

TIDBITS

1) One of the last Roman emperors was Marjorianus. It is unlikely that he ever ate hot dogs.

2) The Romans did conquer and possess Gaul, the location of modern-day France, for hundreds of years.

3) The first Gallic province the Romans took was cleverly called Provence.

4) This area is still called Provence.

5) Americans eat lots of hot dogs. We barbeque them.

6) The French eat a few hot dogs. They also wrote stories about Barbar The Elephant.

7) Romans ate no hot dogs. They were conquered by barbarians.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Henri Hassan McTaggart Omelette

American Breakfast

HENRI HASSAN McTAGGART OMELETTE

INGREDIENTS

¼ onion
¼ cup fresh cilantro
½ red bell pepper
½ celery stalk
½ tablespoon sesame oil
½ tablespoon peanut oil
½ tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
4 ounces ground turkey
¼ cup mild yellow pepper rings
¼ teaspoon parsley
¼ teaspoon coriander
⅛ teaspoon thyme
⅛ cayenne
½ teaspoon cumin
¼ teaspoon bacon bits
¼ cup heavy whipping cream
¼ cup salsa
½ cup five Italian cheeses
12 eggs (wow!)
no-stick cooking spray

Makes 4 three-egg omelettes

SPECIALTY ITEM

No-stick cooking pan

PREPARATION

Dice onion, cilantro, red bell pepper (Will a bull charge a red bell pepper?), and celery. In mixing bowl, blend eggs with a whisk. Pour the blended eggs into a measuring cup. It should make about 2 cups.

Add sesame oil, peanut oil, and olive oil to regular frying pan. Turn heat to medium. You should see little bubbles in the oil when it is hot enough. You can also drop a morsel of meat or onion in the pan. When the morsel starts to cook or move, the oil is ready.

Add ground turkey, onion, cilantro, celery, red bell pepper, yellow pepper rings, parsley, coriander, thyme, cayenne, cumin, and bacon bits. Stir occasionally. Cook at medium-high heat until turkey changes color. Add heavy whipping cream, salsa, and five Italian cheeses. Cook and stir until the cream is completely blended into the mix.

Spray a no-stick pan with a no-stick cooking spray. You need all the no-stick help you can get when making a true omelette. Virtuous living also helps.

(Ideally you want no friction at all so that you could get the spatula under the eggs without a problem. Of course, without friction you couldn’t hold a spatula, turn a doorknob, or walk without falling down.)

The following steps make one omelette. Repeat them to make four omelettes.

Turn heat to medium-high. Pour about ¼th of the blended eggs, or ½ cup, in to the no-stick frying pan.

Shake the pan gently so the eggs evenly cover the pan’s entire surface or makes an egg disc. Put lid on top to make it cook faster. Lift the lid every 15 seconds to see how the eggs are cooking. When the eggs are done to your desired firmness, add the turkey/vegetable mix.

Add ¼ of the pepper/spice/whipping cream/cheeses mix or enough to cover about ½ of the spatula. Put the mix in the center/left of the cooked eggs disc. Gently work the spatula under the left of the egg disc and carefully fold the eggs over the mix. Repeat the fold.

Now, you have something approaching a real omelette, not that flipped over, half-mooned shaped egg thing most restaurants today call omelette. After you have gotten some practice, try folding in the top and bottom of the egg disc a tad before rolling it over. A well made omelette is not only tasty, but a thing of beauty.

TIDBITS

1) Not many people know that during the great Civil War between the North and South that a French/Arab/Scot by the name of Henri Hassan McTaggart terrorized the good folks of Poway, California with his kilted band of desperadoes, Los Biente Bagpipes.

2) No farm, no stagecoach or gold shipment passing through Poway’s fertile valleys was safe from these marauders.

3) Los Biente Tam O’ Shanters always attacked upwind, volley after volley of cat-screeching sounds from their bagpipes. If for some reason that didn’t work they’d don their berets and charge, pistols blazing.

4) It took a whole division of infantry in 1865 to capture Los Biente Tam O’ Shanters. Even so, three got away.

5) Justice prevailed as Powegian courts sentenced the outlaws to hang after the trial.

6) As befitted Powegian tradition, Sheriff Harry Albondigas asked McTaggart what he wished for his last meal.

7) McTaggart asked for: onion, cilantro, red bell pepper, celery, peanut oil, sesame oil, extra-virgin olive oil, ground turkey, yellow pepper rings, parsley, coriander, thyme, cayenne, cumin, bacon bits, heavy whipping cream, salsa, five Italian cheeses, eggs, and no stick spray.

8) By the time the Powegian sheriff assembled these ingredients the remaining Tam O’ Shanters sprung McTaggart from jail.

9) Poway has been the culinary capital of French/Arab/Scottish fusion cuisine ever since. Foosh!

10) Or so people say.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fijian Bacon and Banana

Fijian Entree

FIJIAN BACON AND BANANA

INGREDIENTS

8 strips of bacon
4 bananas
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon parsley
8 bread slices

PREPARATION

Toast the bread. Lightly coat the toast with paprika and parsley. Peel the bananas. Cut them in half lengthways. Sprinkle pepper and salt on them.

Spray the fry pan with no-stick spray. Fry the bacon until it reaches the desired level of crispiness. Put the bacon on a towel to drain the fat. Fry the bananas for about four minutes on medium-to-high heat.

Put a bacon (BACON!) strip and banana half on each piece of toast. Serve hot.

TIDBITS

1) This dish is a favorite in Fiji where about one in five recipes has banana as an ingredient.

2) It’s more of an acquired taste back here in America. My children did not acquire it.

3) My wife and I honeymooned in Fiji. We had a fancy hut maybe fifty yards from the beach and a coral reef not ten yards from the shore.

4) Fiji suffered two coups after we left. We claim no responsibility.

5) Coconuts are expensive in America. They lay by the dozens along the road near our hut.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Chicken Sour Cream Soup

American Soup

CHICKEN SOUR CREAM SOUP

INGREDIENTS

½ red onion
2 ripe red tomatoes
3 red bell peppers
2 pounds chicken breasts
1½ tablespoons peanut oil (1½ more tablespoons later)

1½ tablespoons peanut oil
1 teaspoon Poultry MagicTM spice
2 teaspoons coriander
2 tablespoons paprika
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon parsley
1 pound sour cream
1 pound chicken broth
½ pound Ricotta cheese

SPECIAL UTENSIL

Dutch oven

PREPARATION

Dice red onion. Remove seeds and stems from tomatoes. Chop tomatoes and bell peppers into ½-inch squares. Chop chicken breasts into 1-inch cubes.

Put 1½ tablespoons peanut oil in Dutch oven. Add chicken cubes. Add poultry spice, coriander, paprika, salt, and parsley. Cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Put 1½ tablespoons peanut oil in saucepan. Add red onion, tomato, and bell pepper. Cook on medium heat for about 6 minutes or until red onion becomes tender or translucent.

Combine red onion, tomato, and bell pepper with chicken in Dutch oven. Add sour cream, chicken broth, and Ricotta cheese. Cook for 12 minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally.

Serve in bowls. (If the guests arrive late enough that some of the liquid boils off, don’t worry. Cheerfully, serve them Chicken Sour Cream Stew and Tabasco cocktails.)

TIDBITS

1) My father once came up with a similar dish. He asked my mother what to call the food. She said, “Bruno.” His dish has been “Chicken Bruno” ever since.

2) Saint Bruno was a statesman, chancellor, and brother to the first Holy Roman Emperor Otto I.

3) He is remembered for his eloquence and his refusal to become bishop.

4) However, we don’t know if Saint Bruno liked sour cream on his chicken or not.

6) So, liking sour cream on chicken won’t necessarily help you become a saint.

7) You must perform four miracles to become a saint.

8) It’s a miracle to me how chocolate doughnuts can jump into my shopping cart quite unaided.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Five Layer Chicken Florentine

Italian Entree

FIVE LAYER CHICKEN FLORENTINE

INGREDIENTS

FIRST LAYER – BOTTOM SAUCE

1 10.75-ounce can of cream of celery
½ cup mayonnaise
¾ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon lemon juice
⅛ teaspoon salt (⅛ teaspoon more in FOURTH LAYER)
⅛ teaspoon pepper
⅛ teaspoon Mediterranean rice spice
2 tablespoons rice vinegar

SECOND LAYER – RICE

½ cup rice
1 cup water

THIRD LAYER – CHICKEN

2 chicken breasts
2 tablespoon vegetable oil

FOURTH LAYER – TOP SAUCE

1 10-ounce package creamed spinach
½ cup milk
¼ cup grated Swiss cheese
1 small onion
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
⅛ teaspoon thyme
¼ teaspoon coriander
¼ teaspoon Poultry MagicTM spice
⅛ teaspoon salt

FIFTH LAYER – BREAD CRUMBS AND CHEESE

½ cup bread crumbs
1 tablespoon butter, melted
¼ cup Parmesan cheese

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT

Large casserole dish
Medium casserole dish
Serves 6. Takes 1 hour 30 minutes.

PREPARATION

The five layers are from bottom to top:

First: bottom sauce
Second: rice
Third: chicken breast
Fourth: top sauce
Fifth: cheese and bread crumbs

FIRST LAYER – BOTTOM SAUCE

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Add celery soup, mayonnaise, Cheddar cheese, lemon juice, Mediterranean rice spice, ⅛ teaspoon salt, pepper, and rice vinegar to baking dish. Mix thoroughly with fork or whisk. Bake in large casserole dish for 25 minutes at 375 degrees. (You can save time by preparing the fourth layer and putting in the oven after you have put this layer in the oven.)

SECOND LAYER – RICE (Above bottom sauce)

Take 1 cup rice and cook according to instructions on package. Spread evenly over FIRST LAYER in large casserole dish when both are done.

THIRD LAYER – CHICKEN BREAST (Above rice)

While at the bottom sauce is baking and the rice is cooking, cut each chicken breast into 12 pieces. Add chicken and vegetable oil to non-stick frying pan. Sauté chicken on high heat for 10 minutes or until it starts to brown. Stir occasionally. Put chicken breasts on top of the SECOND LAYER of rice when all three layers are done. (Resist the temptation to drive to KFC.)

FOURTH LAYER – TOP SAUCE (Above chicken breast)

Dice onion. Add creamed spinach, milk, Swiss cheese, onion, Dijon mustard, thyme, coriander, poultry spice, and ⅛ teaspoon salt to medium casserole dish. Bake for 25 minutes at 375 degrees. Remove and set aside.

FIFTH LAYER – BREAD CRUMBS AND CHEESE (Above top sauce)

After you have taken the casserole dishes out of the oven, and have placed the first four layers in order, spread the bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese evenly over the FOURTH layer. Pour the melted butter evenly, as always, over everything. Put the five layers in the large casserole dish back in the oven.

Bake for 25 minutes at 375 degrees. The sauce layers should be set and the chicken cooked through.

Grab a cold mug of root beer. Sip it slowly. Savor the taste. Grab the frying pan with your other hand. Use the pan to threaten anyone who complains about the wait for this dish. Then eat it all yourself. It’s great.

TIDBITS

1) Spinach was cultivated 2,000 years ago in Iran. Now, Iran may very well be contemplating building a nuclear bomb for dubious purposes.

2) The ancient Romans and Greeks cultivated spinach as well and never built a nuclear device.

3) So maybe we shouldn’t worry about Iran.

4) After all Popeye The Sailorman always consumed cans of spinach in times of crisis and always fought for the honor and welfare of his beloved Olive Oyl.

5) California produces half of America’s spinach.

6) Did Popeye’s spinach come from California?

7) Did Popeye ever marry Olive Oyl? I’d like to think so, even if they had to elope to do it.

8) I had a Yogi The Bear lunch box in first grade. I don’t believe I ever had Five Layer Florentine Chicken put in it.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Chicken Kiev From Ukraine

Ukrainian Entree

CHICKEN KIEV

INGREDIENTS – SEASONED BUTTER

⅔ cup butter
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic salt (¼ teaspoon more later)
½ teaspoon Poultry MagicTM spice
1 teaspoon parsley
1 teaspoon tarragon
6 chicken breasts

INGREDIENTS – SMALL MIXING BOWL

2 eggs
1½ tablespoons water

INGREDIENTS – SHALLOW BOWL

¼ teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon dill weed
½ cup flour
1½ cups bread crumbs
2 cups vegetable oil

INGREDIENTS – GARNISH

1 lemon
1 tablespoon parsley

SPECIAL UTENSILS

Kitchen mallet
Kitchen scissors
toothpicks

PREPARATION OF SEASONED BUTTER

Leave butter out until it softens. 30 minutes should be sufficient. In small bowl, thoroughly mix softened butter, black pepper, garlic salt, and poultry spice. Spread mixture into 2-inch by 4-inch rectangle on aluminum foil. Freeze for about an hour or until firm.

PREPARATION OF CHICKEN BREAST

Make sure chicken breasts are thoroughly defrosted. You will be sorry when you have to flatten those chicken breasts if they are rock hard or even partially defrosted.

Cut chicken breasts into 6 pieces with your kitchen scissors (Snip! Snip! The scissors sound as if you’re giving someone a haircut.) or if you already have chicken-breast halves, cut them into 3 pieces.

Put chicken-breast sixths between two pieces of plastic wrap or wax paper. Pound away with your kitchen mallet until the entire piece of chicken is ⅛-inch thick. A thin piece of chicken is easy to roll up. It also cooks faster than a thick piece, so you’ll be less likely to dry out the outside of the chicken.

(Note: you are armed with two weapons of destruction, the mallet and the scissors. Don’t make this entree while feuding with your sweetheart.)

After butter hardens, remove it from the freezer and cut it into 12 equal-size pieces. Place one butter pat in the middle of each piece of chicken. Fold in edges of chicken-breast sixth and roll up to completely enclose seasoned butter pat. I suggest keeping the chicken rolls together with toothpicks.

Make seasoned flour by stirring garlic salt, dill weed, and flour together in another bowl. This bowl should be shallow or wide to make rolling chicken in it easier.

Make egg mixture by adding eggs and water to small mixing bowl. Mix well with fork. Put bread crumbs on small plate.

Smother rolled up chicken breasts in seasoned flour. Completely coat chicken rolls in egg mixture. Finally, cover chicken breasts all over with bread crumbs.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Put chicken rolls in skillet. Turn over after 4 to 5 minutes or after bottom of chicken is golden brown. Cook other side for same length of time or until outside is golden brown and the inside is completely white.

Remove oil by placing chicken rolls on paper towel. Transfer chicken rolls to large serving plate. Cut lemon into 6 slices and arrange slices around plate. Sprinkle parsley over chicken rolls.

(Let us hope your dinner guests appreciate how tasty this dish is and how much effort you put into making it. If not, menace them with your kitchen mallet and kitchen scissors until they do.)

TIDBITS

1) Ukraine, like other nations, is proud of its fast-food heritage. Some of its fast-food chains are: Domashnyaya Kukhnya, Pechiona Kartopolina, Potato House, Rostik’s, and McDonald’s.*

2) Kiev has a skiing hill located downtown. You take an elevator to get to the top.

3) Kiev was fifty times the size of London in the 1000s.

4) Kiev fell to the Mongols in 1240, who so thoroughly destroyed the town that the population fell to a few dozen. The Mongols meted out the same treatment to other cities they conquered.

5) In return, the Mongols have given us Mongolian beef. Not enough.

6) Think of how many cities the French emperor, and my great, great, great grandfather Napoleon 1st seized. Then ponder how many more entrees, appetizers, and desserts the French have given the world.*

7) * = I don’t know the status of Tidbits 1) and 2). As of press time, Putin has been savagely invading Ukraine for ten months.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

 

 

 

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Australian Meat Pie

Australian Entree

MEAT PIE

INGREDIENTS – FILLINGMeatPie-

2½ pounds chuck or round steak
2 onions
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt (1/4 teaspoon more later)
¼ teaspoon thyme
4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1½ cups beef stock
¼ cup water
3 tablespoons flour (2 cups more later)

INGREDIENTS – BOTTOM PASTRY

2 cups flour
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ cup butter (softened)
10 tablespoons water

INGREDIENTS – TOP PASTRY

1½ tablespoons milk
3-to-4 sheets puff pastry
1 egg
4 tablespoons ketchup

SPECIAL UTENSILS

Dutch oven
4 meat-pie pans with 5″ diameter or 3 pans with 6″ diameter

Makes 4 5″-meat-pies. Takes 2 hours 15 minutes.

PREPARATION – FILLING

Cut chuck into ½” cubes. Mince onions. Add onion and olive oil to Dutch oven. Sauté onion on medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add meat, nutmeg, pepper, salt, thyme, Worcestershire sauce, and beef stock. Simmer on low heat for about 1 hour. Stir occasionally.

Combine ¼ cup water and 3 tablespoons flour in mixing bowl. Stir with whisk until you get a smooth, runny mix. Gradually add the flour/water mix into the Dutch oven. Stir with spoon until the filling thickens. Remove from heat and let cool.

PREPARATION – BOTTOM PASTRY

While filling is simmering, add 2 cups flour, ¼ teaspoon salt, and butter to a second mixing bowl. Blend ingredients with whisk. Add 10 tablespoons water. Remove dough and knead on surface dusted with flour. (Martian surfaces will work as well, but be sure to take along a space suit.)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Let dough sit for 20 minutes. Flatten dough with rolling pin. (A large can of soup will do. Plastic explosives are way too risky.)

PREPARATION – TOP PASTRY

Line pie pans with bottom pastry. Add filling to each pan. Moisten rims of pies with milk. (This helps tops to stick with the bottom pastry.) Place a sheet of puff pastry on top of each pie. Trim away the excess puff pastry. Press edges of puff pastry onto rims of bottom pastry with fork. Poke holes in bottom pastry with fork. Beat egg with whisk or fork. Glaze tops evenly and sparely with egg.

Bake pies at 400 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Spread ketchup over each pie. Enjoy a nice cooling refreshment. Press gang the least appreciative guest into cleaning up.

TIDBITS

1) Kangaroo is Australian Aborigine for, “I don’t understand what you’re saying.”

2) Melbourne, Australia has the largest public tram system in the world.

3) Australia is three times bigger than Greenland. So it’s no surprise that Melbourne has a bigger tram system than Nuuk, Greenland.

5) Curly Howard of the Three Stooges said “Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk” in many of his movie shorts.

6) The Denver Broncos quarterback often yelled out “Omaha” during plays all through the 2013 NFL season. Some people think he was promoting the city of Omaha, Nebraska.

7) Was Curly really trying to promote Nuuk, Greenland? That would be truly scary for Nuuk was called Godthaab until 1979 and Curly died in 1952.

8) Perhaps Curly had a time machine and visited modern Nuuk. We should all be grateful Curly did not use his time machine to achieve world domination.

9) If you had a time machine you could go back to the point when you had just cooked yourself a wonderful dinner and eat it. You would never have to cook again. You’d just keep going back to that moment and eat that delightful dish over and over again.

10) But then no one would ever need to buy food again. Millions of farmers would be out of business. They’d riot. Worldwide collapse would ensue. And Curly would say, “Nyahh-ahhh-ahhh!”

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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