Category Archives: Food

The category formerly known as “Food and Diet.” I finally caved and realized I hadn’t been on my diet for a month now. Instead, I’ve gone on the “good food” diet.

Crunchy Fried Pickles

Crunchy Fried Picklesd

Fried pickles are one of those southern dishes I really only started to enjoy within the last few years. I came up with this recipe recently when I had some buttermilk on hand and needed ways to use it up. It’s really very simple with few ingredients and what you ultimately have are thick pickle chips with a crunchy exterior and a tangy, soft interior. I prefer using thick cut pickles because they hold up better when shallow frying. Plus they just seem to be a heartier snack! 🙂

Recipe: Crunchy Fried Pickles

Ingredients

  • 8 to 12 pieces of thick cut dill pickles
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic, divided use
  • 1 teaspoon powdered onion, divided use
  • 1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper, divided use
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided use
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup corn meal
  • Oil for frying

Instructions

  1. Drain dill pickles on a paper towel and set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a shallow frying pan over medium heat.
  3. In a bowl, mix buttermilk, half the garlic, half the powdered onion, half the black pepper, and half the salt. Set aside.
  4. In another bowl. mix the flour, corn meal, and remaining spices.
  5. Coat the pickles in the dry mix first, then dredge in the buttermilk, then coat with more flour. Do this with all the pickles until coated.
  6. Fry pickles in a shallow pan with oil over medium heat. Make sure your oil is hot enough, then add as many pickles without overcrowding the pan. When one side is crusted over and light blonde, flip over and cook until the other side crusts over and. Then cook until golden brown.
  7. Drain on paper towels before serving with buttermilk ranch.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 2

How to Store Green Onions (Scallions)

 How to store green onions

Ok people, so if you learn anything valuable from this blog it’s going to be this. I’ve actually been storing my green onions this way for the last couple years. Before I discovered this, I was doing everything under the sun to try and keep my green onions from lasting longer than a few days (wrapping them completely in foil, putting them in a ziploc bag, etc.). Now, my green onions last for a week, sometimes longer.

See photo evidence below. The green onions on the right were purchased a week ago. See how nice and evenly green they are? Lovely!

So what do you have to do? Honestly, no fancy voodoo here. In fact, you don’t even have to wash and dry them (although I would recommend at least gently patting dry the green tops with a paper towel). Just take a paper towel, wet it with some water, and squeeze it out. You don’t want it sopping wet, just damp. wrap the roots loosely with the paper towel and then just store them in the plastic bag you brought them home in, or a ziploc bag, whatever.

Then just store them in your vegetable drawer like normal. I’ve even stored them out in the open in my fridge and it’s fared well (not as well as being in the drawer, but still not too bad). Below is how my green onions look when they’re ready for storage. Just loosely wrapped in the plastic, green tops peeking out.

 

Next time you buy green onions, give this a shot. Hopefully it’ll work out as well for you as it has for me!

Grilled Chicken con Sazon

Grilled Chicken con Sazon, originally uploaded by krisalis903.

I grilled this for lunch today. Go ahead and be jealous. It’s ok.

I recently discovered Goya’s Sazon con Achiote y Culantro. Honestly I’m not quite sure how I’ve lived my 31 years without it.

This seasoning comes in a little box in individual foil envelopes just ready for use.

For this particular batch, I actually seasoned the chicken the night before and let it sit in the fridge in a plastic ziplock bag overnight. It gives the sazon more time to make love to the chicken. Aw yeah.

Then this morning, I took the chicken out of the fridge to come up to room temperature and fired up the grill. I made sure to get the coals nice and hot (about 350-375F) and cooked the bone-in, chicken thighs for about 45 minutes, turning them about 2-3 times during the cooking process and spraying each thigh every 10 minutes or so with my secret basting liquid (an infused mixture of water, vinegar, sugar, onion, garlic, and jalapeno).

What I ended up with were perfectly cooked, juicy chicken thighs with slightly crispy skin, very similar to pork chicharones. And I know I’m supposed to be all healthy and stuff, but I couldn’t NOT eat the skin.

The only problem with Goya’s sazon is the first ingredient is MSG 🙁 Now I know there’s a lot of controversy surrounding MSG, no need to go all preachy on me and stuff. So eventually I’m going to try a no-MSG alternative, something similar to the recipe in this thread.

Do you have a special sazon recipe you can share?

Book Review: Cool Waters by Brian Preston Campbell

I came across this book a while ago on Amazon and was actually kinda intrigued by the concept of flavored water. Flavored water is essentially what it sounds like: water that’s been infused with fruits, herbs, and sometimes vegetables.

This hardcover book isn’t very extensive. In fact, it only has about 50 recipes so it’s under 100 pages long, but it does make a great introduction to concocting your own flavored waters.

One thing to note about these recipes is it’s flavored water which means it’s generally unsweetened (excluding the natural sweetness from fruits). The first recipe I tried it was… kinda gross. But the more I drank it, the more my taste buds stopped searching for something sweet, and started accepting the flavorful and refreshing flavors.

The beginning of this book has an overview on necessary tools for making flavored waters, most of which you may already have in your kitchen or bar. I also like that each recipe is accompanied by a visual prep time and servings indicator, allowing you to quickly see how long a recipe will take to prepare. For the most part, I thought these were accurate, except for the Watermelon Basil water which took a lot longer and required significantly more muscle to make.

Continue reading Book Review: Cool Waters by Brian Preston Campbell

Once Upon a Family Recipe Album and Box Giveaway Winner

Thanks to everyone who entered! I was getting hungry just reading through the comments. I almost regretted asking for people’s favorite recipes but I guess now I’ll just have to research all of them and make them one day 🙂

The giveaway winner was YouTube comment #9:

 

Winning comment:

If the winner doesn’t respond within 24 hours, I’ll be picking another one. Thanks again everyone for participating!