Hugh’s Chicken Rub

1/2 cup paprika
3 tablespoons cayenne pepper
5 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons garlic powder

3 tablespoons onion powder
6 tablespoons salt
2 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 1/2 tablespoons dried thyme
In a medium bowl, combine the paprika, cayenne pepper, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, oregano, and thyme. Mix well, and store in a cool, dry place in an airtight container.
Printed From 9/23/2017

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Soy Sauce Marinade

Good for beef, chicken, as well as pork.

1/2 c. soy sauce

1/2 c. water

2 Tbsp. lemon juice

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

2 Tbsp. oil

1/4 tsp. liquid hot pepper sauce

2 + cloves, garlic

1/4 tsp. black pepper

Combine.  Marinade meat for at least 6 hrs. Makes 1 1/4 c.

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Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies

 The Science of Good Cooking (Cook’s Illustrated) includes a terrific new taste to the classic  chocolate chip cookie.

1 3/4 c all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

14 T. unsalted butter

3/4 c. packed brown sugar

1/2 c. granulated sugar

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 lg. egg + 1 lg. yolk

1 1/4 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips or chunks

3/4 c. pecans or walnuts, toasted & chopped

Whisk flour & baking soda together in medium bowl; set aside.

Melt 10 T. butter in 10 inch skillet over med. heat.  Continue cooking swirling pan constantly until butter is golden brown, 1-3 minutes.  Transfer butter to large bowl.  Add remaining 4 T. butter and stir until completely melted.

Add both sugars, salt and vanilla to melted butter;  stir until fully incorporated.  Add eggs, whisk until mixture is smooth Let stand for 3 minutes, then whisk for 30 seconds.  Repeat process of resting and whisking for two more times until mixture is smooth and shiny.  Using rubber spatula, stir in flour mixture until just combined.  Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.  Stir dough until completely mixed.

Roll into balls with about 3 T. of dough and place 2 ” apart on prepared baking sheets.

Bake at 375 degrees for 10-14 minutes until puffy and edges have begun to set but centers are soft.

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Jane’s Nutty Granola

This has become my daily breakfast with a banana and yogurt.  It’s what I call the perfect granola.

Jane’s Nutty Granola

2 1/2 c. rolled oats
2/3 c. hazelnuts
2/3 c. almonds
2/3 c. pecans
1/4 c. wheat germ or ground flaxseed
1/2 c. sunflower seeds
1/2 c. pepitas
1/4 c. unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 c. sesame seeds
1/4 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. cardamom

1/3 c. coconut oil
1 T. fresh ginger, grated
1/2 c. honey

Mix dry ingredients together in a large bowl.  In a saucepan, warm coconut oil, honey, and ginger.  Mix into dry ingredients.  Spread on a rimmed backing sheet and bake for 30 minutes at 350 F., mixing halfway through to ensure even baking.  Cool in the pan on a wire rack and store in an airtight container.

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Braised Pork Chops with Apples

I came to this recipe after acquiring some particularly thick, bone-in pork chops that didn’t fry up well.  My search brought me to the Joy of Cooking (always a go-to when it comes to staples), and resulted in one of my favorite ways to make pork.  The technique of searing and then baking results in extremely tender chops with good flavor.  I loved the recipe so much that my personal copy of Joy now boasts a Mom-style annotation: delicious!

My adaptation strays from the original in that I tend to use apples and cider (as opposed to other fruits, such as prunes, apricots, or pineapple slices, and chicken stock or other fruit juices), but mostly because I usually have apples on hand when I have chops in the fridge.  I also tend simply to make a reduction from the pan juices as opposed to a sour-cream-enriched sauce as the original recipe recommends.  Of course, as with any good dish, this one is open to interpretation.  Perhaps some day I will feel compelled to mix it up… but in the meantime, I simply plan to enjoy.

Braised Pork Chops with Apples
Adapted from “Braised Pork Chops with Fruit,” Rombauer & Becker, Joy of Cooking (30th printing, May 1983), p. 479

Preheat oven to 325 F.  Season your pork chops (3/4 inch thick or more; allow 1 chop per person) with salt, pepper, and rosemary.  Sear on both sides in a lightly greased hot skillet.

Core apples (1 apple for every 2 chops).  Place one half of an apple on each of the chops, skin side down (so they form a cup).  Fill the centers of the fruit with brown sugar.

Cover the bottom of the skillet to 1/2 inch with apple cider.  Cover the pan closely.  Bake about 1 hour.  Remove the chops from the pan carefully, so as not to disturb the fruit.  Keep warm.  If desired, make a reduction from the pan juices.  It’s delicious on potatoes.

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Possibly See’s Fudge

The family tale, whether true or not, is that a friend of my Mother requested the recipe for her favorite fudge from See’s Candy.  She was so thrilled when she was granted the recipe. It was followed up by a charge of $100.  Her response was to share the recipe with her friends, so that they would not have to incur the fee.  Truth or fiction, it is creamy and delicious.

5 c. sugar, place in large kettle
1-13 oz. can evaporated milk
3 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips (3-6 oz. bags)
1 c. butter
18 marshmellows, cut into pieces
1/8 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
2 full cups walnuts, cut into large chunks

Place chocolate, marshmellows, butter, salt in large bowl.  Put sugar and milk into kettle and boil until it forms a soft ball (about 6 minutes after it starts to boil).  Stir constantly.  Test in ice cold water, to see if it can be rolled into a soft ball (soft ball stage on a candy thermometer).  Take off fire and pour over mixture in bowl.  Stir by hand until well mixed.  Add vanilla and nuts.  Do not beat.

Pour into well buttered pan, so that it is about 1″ thick.  Keep in refrigerator.  Cut when needed.

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Sauerkraut: Naturally Fermented

from Wild Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz

Allow 1-4 weeks for fermentation.

5 lbs. cabbage
3 Tablespoons sea salt

Chop or grate cabbage finely or however you like it.  Place cabbage in a large bowl as you chop, so that you can salt it as you go.  Add other vegetables (carrots, onions, garlic, etc.)  Add dill seeds or caraway seeds.  Mix ingredients together and pack into a crock (or food grade plastic bucket from the bakery section of your supermarket) in small portions.

Tamp down the cabbage tightly into the crock and force the water out of the cabbage.  Cover the cabbage with a plate or other lid that fits snugly inside the crock.  Place a clean weight (jar filled with water) on the cover.  The weight will force water out of the cabbage and keep it submerged under the brine.  Cover the crock with a dish towel or cloth to keep out dust/flies.

Press down on the weight to add pressure to the cabbage and force water out of it.  Do this every few hours, until the brine rises above the plate.  If the brine does not rise above the plate level by the next day, add enough salt water to bring the brine above the plate.  Add about 1 T. of salt to 1 cup of water and stir until completely dissolved.

Leave the crock to ferment.  Check it every day or two.  The volume reduces as the cabbage ferments.  Sometimes mold/scum appears on the surface.  It referred to a “bloom”.  Skim what you can off the surface.  Don’t worry if you cannot get it all.  It is a surface phenomenon, a result of contact with the air.  The cabbage is under the anaerobic protection of the brine.  Rinse off the plate and weight, and taste.  After a few days, it will taste tangy, getting stronger as the time goes on.  In cool temperatures, it will ferment slowly for months and months as it improves in flavor.  In a heated room or during the summer, it will ferments more rapidly and becomes soft.

Scoop out some to keep in the refrigerator.  The flavor will evolve over the several weeks of fermentation.  Each time you scoop some cabbage out of the crock, repack it carefully.  Make sure the cabbage is tightly packed and the brine covers the plate. Add more salted water if the brine evaporates.   Keep it submerged.

Keep the sauerkraut juice as a digestive tonic.

Now try beets or carrots.

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