Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I love to be loved

Now, my mom is biased, but she says that these were the best re-fried beans she's ever had. I love coming to see her because my cooking is always appreciated.

Refried Beans

3 cups black beans
3-4T Olive Oil
2-3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
cumin, to taste(I usually use about 1/2t)
salt, to taste
fresh ground pepper, to taste

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until mushy and just starting to turn golden. Lower heat and add beans. Stand there with a spoon and mash while they cook. After they start to thicken add cumin and a little salt. Once they're very thick taste and add more salt if needed.

These are time consuming but very tasty!

Yule-tide Stew

2 T Bacon Grease*
2T Olive Oil
1.5-2lbs Deer Meat(ground or very tenderized)**
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 Large Sweet Onion, chopped coarsely
6 Large Carrots, cut into 1/4 inch rounds
3 stalks celery, chopped
16oz Mushrooms, chopped coarsely
1 Largish Yam, peeled and cut into 1.5 inch pieces
2 Large potatoes, cut in 1.5 inch pieces, washed but not peeled)
3/4c Sliced Sun Dried Tomatoes
64oz Vegetable Stock***
2 Bay Leaves
1/4 c Red Wine(I used Frey Cabernet Sauvignon)
10oz Frozen Green Beans
1 can corn, drained
Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Heat your bacon grease and olive oil in a large, heavy pot. Slowly, over medium-low heat, cook your onions. When they appear translucent add in your garlic and celery and cook another minute. Turn the heat up to medium and add in your meat and brown it. Once it's mostly brown add in your celery, carrots and sun dried tomatoes. Cook for another 3-5 minutes. Add in the mushrooms, yam, and potatoes. Give it all a few stirs and add in your vegetable stock, bay leaves and a few turns of the pepper grinder.
Let it all cook for about 30 minutes, uncovered and stirring occasionally. Your yams will sort of melt into the stew. Taste it and add salt and more pepper if needed. Also add in 1/4c red wine.
Cook 10-20 minutes longer until everything is fork tender(or more so) and you can't find the yam. Add in corn and drop in frozen green beans(the tiny ones) and cook until they're warmed through. Serve with cornbread, or hearty rolls(or french bread).

* Instead of bacon grease, you can use butter, or all olive oil.
**Beef or lamb would also work well. You could also make this vegan by omitting the meat(and the bacon fat) completely and replacing it with tofu or beans. I wouldn't add the beans in until after the potatoes are almost done, assuming you are using canned beans.
*** You need a very rich stock for this stew. I use Kitchen Basics Vegetable Stock and I recommend using that or making your own. Most stocks and broths are too salty with no flavor.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

A variation on Hatters

My daughter now has a cat. He adopted her. He follows her around everywhere. If I'm holding her, he's at my feet. If she's playing with crayons, he's on her paper. The only problem with this(other than the fact that he has to stay here at my mom's) is that I think she's allergic to him. I've been having to give her antihistamines a lot. She doesn't like the grape flavor and spits it back out at me. I've started to bribe her by telling her she can have a cookie when she's taken it all. I don't like to use food as a bribe, but man, she's so much happier once those meds kick in. (She naps too!) So I ran out of the hatters I brought with me and my ginger cookies ended up with too much ginger. So I decided to make more Hatters, except when I went to add in the quinoa flakes, I realized a moth had taken up residence in them. It wouldn't have been so bad(extra protein!) except there was coocoon everywhere. Ew. I can't et past that. It's too much like web and I have some serious arachnophobia. So I tweaked it a bit and they turned out awesome.

1 cup Brown Rice Flour
2/3 cup Quinoa Flour
1/3 cup+2T cornstarch
1 cup finely shredded coconut(unsweetened, full fat)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4t Cinnamon
2 Tablespoons canola oil
7 Heaping Tablespoons Pumpkin/hemp butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 Hemp milk(unsweetened, plain)
2 tsp vanilla extract

Add in:
1/2-3/4c chocolate chips

Mix all your dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Then thoroughly mix all your wet in a large bowl. Pour your dry ingredients into your wet and mix well. Stir in chocolate chips. Let sit for ~5 minutes while you line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Drop by tablespoon-fulls onto the cookie sheet and bake 15-20 minutes. Let sit on the cookie sheet at least 5 minutes before trying to move to the cooling rack. These hold up really well for traveling.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Making up for lost time

I have a final tonight at 6pm. I should be studying for it. Instead I'm playing with Cupcake and writing this. She'll nap eventually. I just remembered that people used to call me Skittles in high school. I used to get a lot of "Taste the rainbow" jokes thrown my way. Man. I've been remembering a lot of things that happened in high school that I had forgotten. It's crazy.

MamaCat's Skittle Smoothie

~1.5c frozen mango
1/3c whole berry cranberry sauce
6oz coconut milk yogurt(plain)
1/2-1c plain, unsweetened hemp milk
dash of ginger
Agave sweetener to taste (I use the dark stuff)

Blend all ingredients in blender except agave until smooth. Stop the blender, taste, and add agave if needed.

1/2 my mouth was numb yesterday and I made this and OMG YUM. It was a little too sweet but still really tasty! I used homemade cranberry sauce. You could use a coconut flavored dairy-based yogurt and regular milk. Or a regular yogurt and coconut milk. I think a commercial cranberry sauce would work, but it might get too thick if it has gelatin. I'm not sure how that works really though. CC likeed it but she got brain freeze.

Hatters- A mad success!

These we're adapted from:

I started this by making my own pumpkin/hemp butter. It was about 6-7oz of pumpkin seeds(shelled, not roasted I think) which I blended up in my food processor. Then I added about 1-2T canola oil(add slowly or it'll get too greasy) and mixed that up. Then I added 1/4c hemp seeds and started to grind that. At this point my food processor broke so my "butter" was lumpy. I really need a vitamix. It worked just fine though. These were a little on the sweet side, so next time I'm going to try and cup down the sugar a smidge.

1/3 cup Brown Rice Flour
1/3 cup Quinoa Flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 cup quinoa flakes
1/2 cup finely shredded coconut(unsweetened, I used reduced fat)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

3 Tablespoons canola oil
7 Tablespoons Pumpkin/hemp butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup Hemp milk(unsweetened, plain)
2 tsp vanilla extract

Add in:
1/2-3/4c chocolate chips

Mix all your dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Then throughly mix all your wet in a large bowl. Pour your dry ingredients into your wet and mix well. Stir in chocolate chips. Let sit for ~5 minutes while you line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Drop by tablespoon-fulls(?) onto the cookie sheet and bake 9-11 minutes. Let sit on the cookie sheet at least 5 minutes before trying to move to the cooling rack.

Enjoy. :)

I am the chocolate chips in your oatmeal

Oh, this whole first post thing always gets me. It sort of sets the tone for the entire blog. Until the tone changes that is. So I guess it really doesn't after all.

Hi. I'm MamaCat. I am not a writer. I am not a professional chef or baker. Actually, I'm not a professional anything at this point in time. Well, I suppose I could be considered a professional Mom. Except that I really think one should receive that title after have 2 youngins. I only have one. I sound crunchy on paper(or pixles) but I'm really not as crunchy as all that. I'm more like the chocolate chips you put in your morning oatmeal. I get you to eat what's good for you, but all by myself I'm not all that healthy. I mostly cloth diaper, but I'm using disposables right now because we're having rash issues and traveling. I'm one of those weird, kooky full-term breastfeeders. I'm currently a single SAHM and a full time student. One day(soon I hope!) I'll be a Lactation Consultant.

Cupcake(CC). She's 14 months old today(!) and quite... spirited. That's a good word. She suffers from EAS: Extremely Adorable Syndrome. She also has multiple food allergies. The EAS isn't real(although she is adorable), but the food allergies are. As of now she is allergic to dairy, egg, peanuts, soy, avocado, apples, peaches, wheat, sunflower, oats and possibly salmon. Yes, I have food allergies/intolerances too. Wheat, dairy, eggs shellfish and a few random(cucumber, really?) ones that would fall under the oral allergy syndrome.

This blog is a place for me to keep recipes. And updates about CC. That way if, 'Verse forbid, anything happens to me her Auntie L can take care of her. I try to spell check, but some times, it just doesn't work.