What's Cookin, Good Lookin?

Aka, the Escapist Cookbook.

Considering that we're on lockdown right now, I find myself thinking a bit more about cooking and baking because...well, I can't exactly eat out for a change of pace now, can I? Regardless, I thought to myself that this might be a good opportunity for us to come together and share some recipes we enjoy, whether those be for Meals, Sidedishes, Snacks or Desserts. If it's yummy and fills your tummy, let's hear it! What recipes do you enjoy?

To start us off, there's a recipe we found on Pintrest that I really like as an indulgence. I don't know what the proper name for it is, but that recipe card called them "White Trash Bars". Buttercream frosting on top of a salty-sweet base. The recipe originally only called for toffee bits in the base, but I personally like mixing toffee and caramel chips, and that's the version I'm supplying here. If either is not your cup of tea, just use a full bag of whichever you do like instead of a half bag of each.

Pretty simple recipe, but I love it all the same.

I thought this was going to be about everyone chipping in with super cheesy pickup lines.

I am dissapoint

I thought this was going to be about everyone chipping in with super cheesy pickup lines.

I am dissapoint

Well I can bridge the gap with SilentPony's Gourmet 5 Cheese Mac and Cheese.

Start with short elbow noodles, boiled in water with a little salt. Drain and set aside. Preheat oven to 350.

For the cheese sauce start with milk, heating slowly in a pan. Stir in flour and cook until its starting to get thick. Low heat is a must to prevent burning, and give you time to cook off that raw flour flavor.
For the cheese I add a mix of white sharp cheddar, Asiago, goat crumbles, feta, and Gruyere.

Mix in the cooked noodles and stir to mix. Pour the mixture into a glass baking dish and sprinkle with bread crumbs. Bake at 350 for 20-25mins until the bread crumbs are toasted.

Serve and enjoy! Or better yet come on by my place. I think we'd be gouda together.

My dad's recipe for Fish Pie

- 1kg-ish potatoes
- 400ml or so of milk
- About 25g of butter
- 25g plain flour
- About 300-400g of fish or other seafood chopped into small pieces. More or less anything will do.
- 1 onion, or a similar mass of shallots
- 1 leek, or a similar mass of spring onions
- 1 tsp mustard powder. Or whatever else on your spice rack you think will work.

Peel the potatoes, boil them until tender. Drain them, then mash them with a knob of butter and a bit of milk, to taste. Set aside.

Put the flour, butter, and finely chopped leek/onion/shallots/spring onions/whatever into a pan, heat gently and stir until the butter is melted and incorporated into the flour.

Adding a little at a time, add the milk, stirring all the while. Make sure the mixture doesn't stick to the pan or get lumpy. Cook gently until thickened.

Throw in your seafood and spices. Cook gently for a couple more minutes, then take it off the heat and let it cool.

Once it's cooled a bit, spoon it into an oven proof dish. Spoon the cooled mash on top. Cook in an oven at 200 degrees Celsius for about 20-25 minutes.

Multiple parts Vodka
Some parts soda
Squeeze of lime
1 Straw
1 prayer

Pour over ice, enjoy with a cigarette 6 feet away from the nearest person and maintain patience as this culling of the human race plays out. Cheers; may you not count yourself amongst the culled.

I'm the kind of guy who insists on homemade meals 6 out of 7 days a week, so I do a lot of cooking. Doing it yourself is just more satisfying. Also, kind of don't want my SO to commit crimes to food in my kitchen. Anyway, not much changed lately, tho not having to commute means I have at least an extra hour to spend on prep time for more elaborate and/or time-consuming dishes. Not today tho. Today I kept it simple and old-fashioned:

Belgian Meatballs with Sour Cherry Sauce

- 800g ground meat (porc/beef or lamb)
- 2 shallots
- 1 small clove of garlic
- 1 egg yolk
- parsley and thyme to taste
- 1 tsp mustard (optional)
- breadcrumbs
- 1 can of sour Northern cherries
- 2 tsp corn starch
- sugar
- butter

Finely dice the shallots and garlic. Gently fry in a sauce pan in butter until soft and golden, add parsley and thyme. Let mixture cool a bit, then add to ground meat. Add egg yolk (and the optional mustard). Knead while slowly stirring in breadcrumbs until the meat mix is firm enough to roll into balls about 3cm in diameter.

Traditionally, the meatballs are first boiled in water for about 6-8 mins, then given a quick browning in a pan in some butter. Alternatively, you can just brown them in a non-stick pan til golden, then turn the heat lower and cover the pan with a lid til the meatballs are cooked through.

About 5 minutes before the meatballs are done, start on the cherries. Put them into a second sauce pan. Add some sugar to reduce the tartness of the sour cherries a bit. Spoon a few tsp of the juice into a cup and stir in the corn starch until evenly mixed. Turn the heat on the sauce pan until the juice gets to a boil, then stir in the starch mixture until the sauce thickens. You want it to have about the thickness of gravy.

Serve the meatballs with a healthy helping of cherries with sauce and either some mashed potatoes or whole grain bread (the more rustic, the better).

Done, one classic of Belgian cuisine. Tho not the most popular one anymore. Maybe a little to much an archaic basic farmer's dish for modern tastes. It's really only the elderly that still like this. And me, because it's something my granny used to make, and this recipe and a few others are some of the few thing I have left of her. It's got sentimental value. I like it tho. Offers some sweet, sour and savory all in one. Ah, tastes of nostalgia.

A quick and easy bachelor-chow:

1 package of boxed cous-cous that uses 1 1/4 cup water
2 good sized boneless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon olive oil
2-3 good sized carrots, sliced
1/2 green papper, sliced
1 stalk celery, sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 small can of sliced mushrooms, drained
2 spring onion chopped OR a teaspoon of the dehydrated minced onion if you don't have the fresh ones
parsley for color (roughly about 1/8 of a cup, I just use a pile in the palm of my hand to measure it out)

Cook the chicken breasts in a skillet until done. Set aside on the cutting board to cool.
Add the olive oil to the skillet and then saute the carrots, celery, green pepper, green onions (and the mushrooms if you are using the fresh) and garlic while the chicken cools.
When the chicken is cool enough, cut into bite-sized chunks.
Add the water to the skillet, the flavor packet for the cous-cous, (the dehydrated minced onion if you aren't using the fresh green onions), the drained mushrooms if you aren't using the fresh), and small handful of parsley and return the cut-up chicken to the pan as well.
Bring to a boil and add the cous-cous. Cover and remove from heat, allowing the cous-cous to cook for 5 minutes. A one-skillet meal in and of itself.

The December King

eta: 20 mins

- Two serving packs of Lipton Chicken Noodle Soup
- 1 can of heinz tomato sauce
- 1 cup of milk
- 1 cup of water
- 3 teaspoons butter
- 1 chopped onion
- 2 cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon diced ginger
- pepper to taste

Separate sauce pan, I fry up the cloves, onion, garlic and pepper with one of the teaspoons of butter. Get'em sizzlin'.

While all that's going down, I usually drop the milk, water and rest of the butter in a pot, and heat until the butter has melted, then add the tomato sauce and stir thoroughly. At about this point, the 'triumvirate' (my nickname for the onion, garlic and ginger) gets put on low.

After about two minutes, I adjust the heat on the pot to medium and I add the lipton packs, and stir them in. Now, you gotta stir fairly regularly, as the tomato and noodles have a tendency to bake to the bottom if left unsupervised. I usually stick with it, on and off, for about ten minutes. Once the noodles plump up, mix in the triumvirate, and it's done.

Tasty as all hell, and not a bit healthy. Basically, dolled-up tomato chicken noodle soup.

I already was cooking something like 95% of my meals so this has changed almost nothing for me.

Last thing I made was a broth of shiitake and pea alfredo pasta with secret curry seasoning.

-Half a pack of dried shiitake, simmered for 20 minutes in about 500g of water, drained.

-16 ounce sweat peas, sauteed in a mix of butter and olive oil, simple seasoning of salt, pepper and paprika, cooked until tender

Mix in mushrooms, season them directly and add a bit more olive oil on them and stir for a minute or two, then add the broth, finally add about 250ml of heavy cream and a cup of grated parmesan, and of course more black pepper and finally half a teaspoon of curry powder.

Simmer in low heat until pasta's boiled, for this type of thing I like flat pasta like fetuccine because the sauce is relatively runny and they hold it better. Cook pasta for 2 minutes less than it says on the box (2 minutes less than the low end if the pasta box gives you a range of cooking times) and drain and toss in the sauce and turn the heat off/remove from stove to finish cooking through the residual heat and thicken up nicely. Should be done in 2-3 minutes after that.

Top with more black pepper a drizzle of olive oil and just a bit of parmesan and you have dinner~

This thread was made for me. OK, a few of my favourites:

Sad this thread has no new entries.

C'mon guys and gals, are you honestly telling us that whilst sat at home none of you are cooking your favourite recipes? Share, and inspire!

Grouchy Imp:
Sad this thread has no new entries.

C'mon guys and gals, are you honestly telling us that whilst sat at home none of you are cooking your favourite recipes? Share, and inspire!

Honestly, I'm lazy and am exclusively eating takeout from the taqueria across the street. Maybe I'll get around to the grocery store tomorrow.

Ok, I mostly make this around Christmas, but it's a great side dish all the same. The real trick to it is that you want it sweet enough that you could use it as a dessert if you were so inclined

And another old favorite was what we always called Chinese Chicken Casserole


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