Posts Tagged With: Parmesan

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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Cheese Ravioli

Italian Entree

CHEESE RAVIOLI

INGREDIENTS – PASTA

3 cups or more of flour (¼ cup more later in FINAL STAGE)
2 eggs
¾ cup or more water

INGREDIENTS – FILLING

¾ cup ricotta cheese
¼ cup grated, or chopped, mozzarella cheese
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon basil
½ teaspoon salt (Used 3 times for a total of 2 teaspoons)
1 garlic clove

INGREDIENTS – MARINARA SAUCE

6 Roma tomatoes
½ large white onion
2 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons basil
½ teaspoon marjoram
1 teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon thyme
1 6 ounce can tomato sauce

INGREDIENTS – FINAL STAGE

water
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup flour

SPECIAL UTENSILS

rolling pin
cutting board

Makes about 40 ravioli.

PREPARATION – PASTA

Combine flour, eggs, and water. Mix with hands and make a ball of the mixture. It should just be able to come off your hand. If some of the ball sticks to your hand, then add a bit more flour, mix again, and try the new flour. If the flour ball is powdery, it is too dry. (If you suddenly feel like bowling, the flour ball is too heavy.) Add a bit more water, mix again, and try the consistency again. You might need to do this a number of times.

Sprinkle a generous amount of flour on your cutting board and rolling pin. Roll flour ball out until it is NO THICKER than ¼-inch. Frequently sprinkle the rolling pin to keep the dough from sticking. Let rolled-out flour sit for AT LEAST 4 hours. It should be nearly dry.

PREPARATION – FILLING

While rolled out flour dries, mince 1 garlic glove. Combine ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, and Parmesan cheese, basil, salt, (First use of salt.) and garlic in mixing bowl. Mix with hands. Put cheese filling in fridge.

PREPARATION – MARINARA SAUCE

Mince Roma tomatoes. Peel and mince onion and 2 garlic cloves. Add tomato, onion, garlic, basil, marjoram, oregano, salt, (Second use of salt.) thyme, and tomato sauce to sauce pot. Cook on medium-high heat until mixture boils, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 20 minutes with the lid on. Stir occasionally.

FINAL PREPARATION

Dust cutting board with flour. Use knife to cut 1½-inch wide strips in the flour. Cut these strips into rectangles every 3-inches. (Don’t use these rectangles while reading. They make disappointing bookmarks.) Dust strips with flour. Put a ½ teaspoon or so of the filling on the right side of the 1½-inch by 3-inches flour rectangle. Fold the left side over the filling. Push down on the open sides with the tines of the fork to seal the ravioli.

Fill pot with enough water to cover ravioli. Add salt (Third use of salt.) and olive oil. Boil water. Add ravioli and cook for 20 to 30 minutes. Ravioli should float to the top and the dough should be completely soft. (Now you know why restaurant ravioli are expensive.)

Meanwhile back at the range, cook pasta sauce in pot on medium heat until it is warm. Put ravioli in bowl and add pasta sauce.

TIDBITS

1) The singular form of “ravioli” is “raviolo.”

2) Scarcely anyone eats ravioli for breakfast.

3) But there is a ravioli burrito.

4) Oh my gosh, there is a lutefisk burrito.

5) Why?!! Why?!! Oh the humanity, oh the culinary carnage!

6) Horrors! There is such a thing as a lutefisk ravioli!

7) I think I need to sit down and have a nice, tall frosty mug of root beer.

 

– 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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Beef Ravioli

Italian Entree

BEEF RAVIOLI

INGREDIENTS

PASTA

3 cups or more of flour (¼ cup more later)
2 eggs (1 more egg used later)
¾ cup water or more

FILLING

2 garlic cloves (2 more cloves used later)
½ pound ground beef
1½ teaspoons parsley
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon salt (Used 3 times for a total of 2 teaspoons)
1 egg

MARINARA SAUCE

6 Roma tomatoes
½ large white onion
2 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons basil
½ teaspoon marjoram
1 teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon thyme
1 6 ounce can tomato sauce

FINAL PREPARATION

water
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ cup flour

Serves 4. Takes 1 hour 30 minutes.

PREPARATION OF PASTA

Combine 3 cups flour, eggs, and water. Mix with hands. Make a ball of the mixture. It should just be able to come off your hand. If some of the ball sticks to your hand, then add a bit more flour, mix again, and try the new flour. If the flour ball is powdery, it is too dry. Add a bit more water, mix again, and try the consistency of the next ball. There may be a number of these iterations but it must be done. (You don’t want to let all the Italianos and Italianas in the world down, do you?)

Sprinkle a generous amount of flour on your cutting board and rolling pin. Roll flour ball out until it is 1/16″ or NO THICKER than ⅛”. Frequently sprinkle the rolling pin to keep the dough from sticking. Let rolled-out flour sit for AT LEAST 4 hours. It should be nearly dry.

PREPARATION OF FILLING

While rolled out flour dries, peel and mince 2 garlic cloves. Put garlic, ground beef, Parmesan cheese, parsley, and ½ teaspoon salt in frying pan. Cook on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until beef is no longer red. Put contents of frying pan into bowl. Add egg to bowl. Mix and put beef filling in fridge. (Time to sneak a nice, cold root beer or maybe something even stronger.)

PREPARATION OF MARINARA SAUCE

Mince Roma tomatoes. Peel and mince onion and 2 garlic cloves. Add tomato, onion, garlic, basil, marjoram, oregano, ½ teaspoon salt, thyme, and tomato sauce to sauce pot. Cook ingredients on medium-high heat until it boils, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 20 minutes with the lid on. (Although the Republic will stand if you chose to cook with it off, you wild child you.) Stir occasionally.

FINAL PREPARATION

Dust cutting board with ¼ cup flour. Use knife to cut 1½”- wide strips in the flour. Cut these strips into rectangles every 3 inches. Dust strips with flour. Put a ½ teaspoon or so of the filling on the right side of the 1½-inch by 3-inch flour rectangle. Fold the left side over the filling. Push down on the open sides with the tines of the fork to seal the ravioli.

Fill pot with enough water to cover ravioli. Add 1 teaspoon salt and olive oil. Boil water. Add ravioli and cook for 20 to 30 minutes. Ravioli should float to the top and the dough should be completely soft. (Pure gold is soft as well. However, it’s not a great ravioli ingredient. Gold’s extreme lethality in a molten state make using it an expensive culinary faux pas.)

Meanwhile back at the range, cook pasta sauce in pot on medium heat until it is warm. Put ravioli in bowl and add pasta sauce.

TIDBITS

1) This tidbit was traded for a second-round and a third-round tidbit in a future cookbook.

2) Flour is extremely flammable. You might want to sweep up spilled flour instead of vacuuming it. Flour mills make strong efforts to prevent flour dust from getting into the air and onto the floors. Metallic and coal dust are also quite flammable.

3) Indeed, the Germans in World War II tried to make thermobaric bombs by releasing coal dust in the air just before the Allied Air Force would make its bombing runs. The Germans planned to ignite the coal dust, but could never do so satisfactorily due to problems in getting the dust to disperse.

4) But if you had tons of coal dust and thousands of giant fans on the ground, I mean really huge, you could ignite the air around the enemy bombers with a powerful flare.

5) It might be hard to smuggle thousands of giant fans into an enemy city, though. Maybe if you did it at night.

 

– 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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French Omelette

French Breakfast

OMELETTE

INGREDIENTS – OMELETTE

2 eggs
⅛ teaspoon pepper
⅛ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter (1 more teaspoon later)
1 teaspoon butter

INGREDIENTS – FILLING (OPTIONAL)*

One or more of the following:

2 teaspoons diced herbs – fresh chervil, chives, parsley, or tarragon (½ teaspoon more for garnish)
1½ tablespoons grated cheese – Gruyère, Gouda, or Parmesan
1½ tablespoons diced meat – cooked bacon, ham, or prosciutto
1½ tablespoons combination of the above

* = These ingredients really must be prepared before you start to cook the omelette.

INGREDIENTS – GARNISH

½ teaspoon diced herbs – fresh chervil, chives, parsley, or tarragon

SPECIAL UTENSIL

no-stick pan. If you can dedicate this pan to omelettes only, so much the better.

PREPARATION

Add eggs, pepper, and salt to mixing bowl. Beat eggs vigorously with fork until for 20 seconds or until whites and yolks are well mixed. Heat pan at high heat. The pan is warm enough when a tiny bit of butter sizzles in it. Add 1 tablespoon butter. Tilt the pan into different directions so as to completely coat the pan, including the sides, with melted butter. When butter just starts turning slightly brown, add eggs.

Let eggs settle for 3 seconds. (You have to careful with this recipe.) Sprinkle in any filling ingredients now. Start yanking the pan vigorously back to you, tilting more steeply each time. (This forces the egg to roll over itself more after each jerk.) Omelette should be creamy, but not viscous. This process takes about 20 seconds.

Cover pan, serving side down, with plate. Hold plate in place with one hand. Turn omelette onto plate. (The bottom side of the omelette should now be facing up.) Use fork to gently finish shaping omelette. Brush omelette with 1 teaspoon butter. Sprinkle omelette with herb garnish.

TIDBITS

1) The French Omelette is quite tasty.

2) It also looks like a very thin brick.

3) This is no accident.

4) Culinary archeologists tell us that the pharaohs built the very first pyramids in Ancient Egypt with French-Omelette bricks.

5) Look at that! I spelled the word “archeologists” correctly on the first try. Go me.

6) But these omelette pyramids took forever to build. The worker ate the French omelette as fast as they were made.

7) The completed pyramids proved irresistible to neighboring villagers as well. These pyramids rarely lasted more than a day before they gobbled up all the tasty bricks.

8) Doesn’t that mean the villagers ate quite a bit of food at once?

9) Yes, yes it does.

10) Then didn’t the gluttonous eaters get fat?

11) Yes. Hence the saying “French Omelette pyramids, fat people.”

12) So, succeeding pharaohs tried building pyramids with bread slices. Remember the slogan “Pharaoh Twelve Grain Bread(tm) builds strong pyramids twelve ways.”

13) Of the pharaohs instructed their workers to dry out the bread before using it to construct the pyramids. That worked well until . . .

14) It rained.

15) Pyramid construction kept failing until Sadiski of Saqaara, near Memphis, stumbled over a block of limestone. Yowzer! That hurt. “Limestone ain’t no good for nobody but for pharaohs building pyramids.” Clearly English grammar was not rigorously taught in Ancient Egypt.

16) After the swelling in his ankle went down a light bulb–not yet invented at that time–went on in Sadiki’s brain. Why not quarry the limestone in his backyard?

17) In 2630 B.C,, he pitched the idea of cutting limestone into bricks and then using them to make pyramids to Pharaoh Djosi. Djosi, known as DJ to his subjects, loved the idea. And so, Egypt built the first lasting pyramid.

18) Overtime, Memphis would become famous for barbecue, blues, and rock and roll. The musically talented Djosi would provide the inspiration for millennia of future Djs. Now you know.

 

– 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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Copycat Costco Chicken Bake

American Entree

COPYCAT COSTCO(TM) CHICKEN BAKE

INGREDIENTS

6 ounces cooked bacon
¾ pound cooked chicken breast
2 tablespoons chives
2 stalks green onions
2 cups grated mozzarella
½ cup grated provolone
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup creamy Caesar dressing
1 pound pizza dough
¼ cup creamy Caesar dressing (2 teaspoons at a time)
6 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (1 tablespoon at a time)

SPECIAL UTENSILS

rolling pin
large baking sheet.
parchment paper

Takes 1 hour 15 minutes. Serves 6.

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dice cooked bacon, cooked chicken breast, chives, and green onions. Divide pizza dough into 6 balls. Add bacon, chicken, chives, green onion, mozzarella, ½ cup Parmesan cheese, provolone, and ½ cup creamy Caesar dressing to large mixing bowl. Mix with hands or fork until well blended.

Roll each dough ball into a 9″ * 7″ rectangle. Add 1/6, about 1 cup, of the chicken/cheese mixture to the bottom middle of a dough rectangle. Smooth mixture over dough rectangle, leaving a ½” border. Fold in sides and roll up like a burrito. This is the bake log. Pinch ends of bake log closed. Gently press seam of bake log until closes. Repeat for each dough rectangle.

Place parchment paper on baking sheet. Place bake logs, seam side down on parchment paper. Brush each bake log with 2 teaspoons Caesar dressing. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese over each bake log. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes or until tops turn golden brown.

TIDBITS

1) Naval submarines are called that because they have the same profile as a submarine sandwich. American submarines, at the start of WWII, used torpedo sandwiches to sink Japanese ships. These torpedoes faired poorly as did similarly shaped sandwiches such as the one is this recipe. Eventually the Navy turned to metallic torpedoes armed with explosive warheads to turn the tide in the Pacific.

 

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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Venezuelan Pepito Sandwich

Venezuelan Entree

PEPITO SANDWICH

INGREDIENTS – STEAK

1 pound steaks, skirt, flank, or ribeye
½ tablespoon minced garlic
¾ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

INGREDIENTS – SANDWICHES

4 sandwiches rolls, hoagies
1 cup guasacaca (See previous recipe)
1 cup lettuce, shredded
⅓ cup carrots, shredded
⅓ cup Parmesan cheese
1 tomato
½ cup potato sticks
ketchup (optional)
mayonnaise (optional)

Serves 4. Takes 40 minutes.

PREPARATION – STEAK

Cut steak into strips ½” wide. Add steak strips, garlic, and salt to mixing bowl. Rub garlic and salt into steak strips. Add seasoned steak strips and vegetable oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 3 minutes or until strips brown. Stir frequently. Add Worcestershire sauce. Sauté for an additional 3 minutes. Stir frequently. Remove from heat.

PREPARATION – SANDWICHES

Split sandwich rolls in half. Spread guasacaca on all halves. Divide shredded lettuce and carrot evenly between the bottom roll halves. Top lettuce with carrot. Place steak strips on carrot. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on carrot. Cut tomato into 8 slices. Put 2 tomato slices on each sandwich. Sprinkle potato sticks on tomato slices. Spread ketchup and mayonnaise, if desired, on bun tops. Assemble sandwich.

TIDBITS

1) Little Pepe was known throughout Venezuela for wearing sandals and being clumsy. One day, for reasons that are lost to history, Pepe carried all the ingredients to a post office. As he opened the door, Pepe dropped guasacaca on his left big toe and all the other ingredients on the right big toe. “Whoa,” said the postmaster, “the same food on your toes would look delicious between two sandwich rolls. And so the Pepe Toe sandwich was born. Soon, it shortened to the Pepito Sandwich.

 

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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Makawoni Au Graten (macaroni and cheese)

Haitian Entree

MAKAWONI AU GRATEN
(macaroni and cheese)

INGREDIENTS

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1 pound rigatoni or penne pasta
1 garlic clove
1 small onion
1 red bell pepper
3 tablespoons butter
1 12-ounce can evaporated milk
⅔ cup mayonnaise
1½ cups grated Parmesan cheese
1½ cup grated Edam or Gouda cheese
1 teaspoon seasoned salt

SPECIAL UTENSIL

9″ * 13″ casserole dish

Serves 8. Takes 1 hour 15 minutes.

PREPARATION

Cook rigatoni according to instructions on package. Drain and set aside. Mince garlic clove, onion, and bell pepper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Add garlic, onion, bell pepper and butter to pot. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until garlic and onion soften. Add pasta and evaporated milk to pot with sautéed onion. Mix with spoon until well blended. Add mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese, Edam cheese, and seasoned salt. Mix with spoon until well blended. Ladle ingredients in pot into casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until top turns golden brown.

TIDBITS

1) Albert Einstein, the great mind of the 20th century, theorized that time slows as you travel at speeds closer and closer to the speed of light. He also postulated that as you zip along at velocities near the speed of light, that things get heavier and heavier.

2) So if you were in a spaceship traveling closer to closer to light speed, the time required to make Makawoni au Graten would go from 1 hour 15 minutes to hours and hours or even years. The weight of your macaroni would gradually increase from perhaps four pounds to four tons.

3) Who would ever want to wait years to eat this entree? Who would want to eat four tons of it? Certainly no American astronaut. This is why NASA never serves Makawoni au Graten on its space missions. Not to worry, though, it’s perfectly safe to eat here down on Earth. Darn tasty, too.

 

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

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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Risotto

Italian Appetizer

RISOTTO

INGREDIENTS

5½ cups chicken broth
2 garlic cloves
1 onion
2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, or oregano
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups Arborio* rice
½ cup dry white wine
¾ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons butter

* = The properties of Arborio are important to this dish. The best substitute for Arborio is Carnaroli, with regular short-grain rice to be used only in a pinch.

Serves 10 or 5 if served as an entree. Takes 45 minutes.

PREPARATION

Add chicken broth to pot. Simmer at warm heat. While broth simmers, mince garlic cloves and onion. Dice Italian parsley. Add garlic, onion, and olive oil to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently

Add rice. Reduce heat to medium. Sauté for 3 minutes or until rice smells toasty and turns translucent. Stir frequently, making sure rice is thoroughly coated with olive oil. Add wine. Sauté until rice absorbs all the liquid. Stir frequently. Add broth 1 cup at time. Stir gently after each addition until the rice absorbs the broth. This should take about 25 minutes with the rice being creamy and al dente, just a little bit firm. Remove from heat and gently stir in butter and Parmesan cheese. Garnish with Italian parsley. Serve immediately.

TIDBITS

1) Karl Marx visited lovely Florence in 1848. While waiting forever for an espresso, Crabby Karl listened as workers at the next table complained loudly and endlessly about the oppressive Austrian rule over their city. His patience exhausted, he yelled at the workers, “So, riot.” They did. Fortunately, the chef had been whipping up a new rice dish. He served the workers just as they were about to go and throw bricks at the constabulary. The workers loved their risotto. They completely lost their urge to run amuck. The anagramist among them said, “no ‘so, riot.’” He lifted up his bowl of rice. “Risoto.” A typo turned that into “Risotto. Oh, and Karl would go on to other things.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

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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Fettuccine Alla Papalina

Vatican Entree

FETTUCCINE ALLA PAPALINA

INGREDIENTS

1 pound fettuccine
3 eggs
3 tablespoons cream
1¼ cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese*
1 medium onion
¼ cup butter
5 ounces diced or cubed pancetta, or cubed, uncooked ham
1 teaspoon pepper**
1 teaspoon salt

* = This dish was originally created for Pope Pius XII. His chef used the best ingredients. So, if you are having the pope over for dinner, you really should try to use Parmesan-Reggiano. And even if you aren’t having His Holiness over to dine, your guests will appreciate being placed at his level of importance. However, your grocery store might not stock Parmesan-Reggiano. In this case, use regular Parmesan. The pope will understand. He is a kind and humble man.

** = This dish is supposed to be peppery. The amount of pepper used should be near the upper range for your taste.

Serves 6. Takes 45 minutes.

PREPARATION

Cook fettuccine according to instructions on package. Set aside in a large serving bowl when done. Add eggs, cream, and Parmesan cheese to mixing bowl. Mix with whisk until well blended. Mince onion. Add onion and butter to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Stir frequently. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes or until onion is quite soft. Stir occasionally. Add pancetta to pan. Simmer on low-medium heat for 4 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Pour egg/cream/Parmesan mixture to noodles in serving bowl. Add pepper and salt. Toss noodles until thoroughly coated and the cheese has completely melted. Add onion/pancetta mix to noodles. Mix with fork until well blended.

TIDBITS

1) This dish is difficult to cook in zero gravity. So, no astronaut has ever made this pasta. The moon, however, possesses a weak gravitational field. So, any pasta, and pancetta would, more or less, stay put. Unfortunately, water on the moon evaporates, so this dish can’t be made there either. However, the International Space Station is an enclosed environment and is designed to rotate just fast enough to trick the fettuccine alla papalina into believing gravity exists there.

Chef Paul

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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Shrimp Soup (Chupe de Camarones)

Chilean Soup

SHRIMP SOUP
(Chupe de Camarones)

INGREDIENTSshrimpsoup

6 slices white bread
1 12-ounce can evaporated milk
1 medium onion
1 small carrot
1 stalk celery
1 red bell pepper
2 cups water
½ cup white wine
1¼ pounds shrimp, deveined with shells still on
2 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon thyme
¼ pound grated Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon parsley

SPECIAL UTENSIL

colander

Makes 6 bowls. Takes 50 minutes.

PREPARATION

Remove crust from bread. Add bread and evaporated milk to 1st mixing bowl. Let sit for 15 minutes. Mix with fork

While bread/milk mixture sits, mince onion. Dice carrot, celery, and red bell pepper. Remove shrimp shells from shrimp. KEEP shrimp shells. Add water, white wine, shrimp shells, carrot, and celery to pot. Bring to boil using high heat. Stir occasionally. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Pour pot through colander into 2nd mixing bowl. Discard shrimp shells, carrot, and celery.

Add onion, bell pepper, and butter to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion and bell pepper softens. Stir frequently. Add oregano, pepper. salt, and thyme. Stir.

Add soaked bread and sautéed onion and bell pepper to pot. Cook at medium heat for 5 minutes. Stir frequently Add shrimp and Parmesan cheese. Cook for 3 minutes or until shrimp turns pink and cheese melts. Garnish with parsley.

TIDBITS

1) Tyrannosaurus Rexes had tiny arms.

2) Shrimp have tiny arms.

3) Coincidence?

4) No. Culinary archeologists–Woo hoo, spelled it right the first time–have long known that shrimp are descended from T-Rexes.

5) About 65 millions years ago a massive meteor hit Earth. The impact threw up so much debris that no sunlight got through. It was like going off daylight savings time, getting up at 6 a.m. and finding it still dark outside. Then you have to drive your kid to school in the dark and struggle to get in and out of the school parking lot. But you can’t get through the parking lot because one million other parents are driving their kids as well and oh my gosh, someone cuts in front of you and you were just trying to get out of the parking lot and you honk so your horn.

Oh my gosh, that parent who cut you off, just flipped you off!

“Jerk!” You honk again.

Oh my gosh, she flips you off once more.

“Eat lutefisk, telemarketer,” you find yourself saying.

She gets out of the car and strides towards you. You get out of your car. She sprays you with air freshener. You do the same to her. It’s about to get really ugly when the principal runs between the two of you. “Leave this parking lot at once,” he roars. So you and your nemesis get back in your car. But you can’t leave the parking lot, there are still two millions cars trying to turn left at the signal and the signal stays green for only twenty seconds.

6) Same with the extinction of the dinosaurs, except their parking lot was metaphorical.

7) And that long-ago meteor caused blocked out the Sun for decades, resulting in the death of most plants. The herbivorous dinosaurs died off for lack of food. The carnivorous dinosaurs starting dying off along with their prey.

8) Except for the T-rexes who happened to be at a convention by the ocean. One powerful hungry T-Rex, his name was Billy, saw a fish swimming close to the beach. His tiny arms were just the right size to grab this meal.

9) The rest of the rexes saw this and entered the ocean in search of sustenance. The numerous rexes began to deplete the fish supply. Fortunately, the kings of the dinosaurs didn’t need massive bodies, huge heads with dozens of knife like teeth to catch fish. So over time, the rexes diminished in size until they became the shrimp we see today.

10) Okay, okay, along the way they grew a lot of arms, but that development is harder to explain.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

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.

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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