Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Best. Pancakes. Ever.

and a good cottage fry recipe.



Thursday, July 23, 2015

simply awesome scratch chili seasoning. (sort of)

Homemade Chili Seasoning
Prep time
Total time
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp (approximately) freshly ground pepper
  1. Add all of the ingredients to a bowl and stir to combine. Store in an air-tight container, away from heat and moisture for up to six months.
Taken from: http://www.budgetbytes.com/2014/01/homemade-chili-seasoning/

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Middle Earth Recipes: Frodo's Scones

Perhaps the greatest threat to your post new year's health and fitness resolution?  Forget about the battle for Middle Earth (capitalized, of course), Sauron and the forces of evil scored a major victory in the battle of the bulge when this recipe was introduced.

It all started after I was shown the website "Middle Earth Recipes" found here at the following link: http://lotrscrapbook.bookloaf.net/other/recipes.html#9


I've never been a fan of the "scone" but if I'm honest, it's come up alot recently in conversation.  One of the gifts we received for Christmas from my good buddy Dave and family was a luxurious gift basket complete with all sorts of Anglophile goodies including some Crabtree & Evelyn deliciously bitter marmalade and white chocolate raspberry tea biscuits among other things.  That first got me thinking about scones so when I saw a recipe for "Frodo's Scones" on the "Middle Earth Recipes" website, I figured I'd give it a try.

I had most of the ingredients but I had to substitute a few (margarine for shortening, and cream for buttermilk...Mom if you're reading this - read no further!)

Everything went together easy enough and since we dont have a cutting board to roll out the dough on, I cut the dough in half and rolled it on a plate.  The kicker for these?  They don't go in the oven - you make them on a griddle so I used the small griddle we have after slicing these "starbucks" style into small triangles.  They cooked for 7 minutes on a side and came out like very dense, crispy on the outside biscuits.  Fresh off the stove, they go best with marmalade, apple butter, or, if you dare, regular butter.

I had mine with tea for extra effect.
Rolled out and cut into triangles.

I used butter to grease the griddle and might have put a little on both sides of the scones when flipping them.

Here's what you get afterwards.  I'm not sure how they keep, but these things are dangerously addictive right off the griddle.

Serve with apple butter and a mug of your favorite tea.  

Sunday, December 8, 2013


It's been a long time since we've posted to Cozido! but that doesn't mean we haven't been cooking or eating.

Today is a cold and blustery Sunday in the Northeastern USA and we felt was the perfect day to make a batch of sauce.  Depending on where you are in the world, you may know it by a different name.  Gravy, tomato sauce, spaghetti sauce, etc.  In my neck of the woods, we call it "sauce" (and we don't ever call it gravy, for everyone knows gravy is something that you put on Thanksgiving Turkey or a white roux you put on biscuits...).

Making sauce on a Sunday is a tradition that harks back to my youth, where every Sunday, Italians all over the Lehigh Valley (and my family included) would gather at 10 a.m. for their dinner (lol) after Mass and eat pasta and sauce, usually with some kind of meat.
spicy and sweet Italian sausage.

So with that in mind, the Mrs. and I decided it was a good time to relive the tradition today on this wintery of Sundays.

Ours is a very standard way of preparing sauce but a delicious one.  Start by browning your meat in the pan.  Today we picked Italian sausage both sweet and spicy.  (by the way, my favorite variation is made with pork neck bones and stew meat - which adds the most incredible flavor to the sauce).

I empty a little more than half of the grease and add some fresh olive oil to the pot.  Once the olive oil is hot enough, we add 1 large onion chopped up beyond recognition, and 3 cloves of minced garlic.  (please....too much garlic?  My wife is Portuguese and I'm Italian.  3 cloves is barely enough).
1 large onion and 3 cloves or garlic

a little more olive oil after the sausage is done cooking.  (emptied half of the grease)

Leonor demonstrates the "forbidden art" of Portuguese rapid onion chopping.

Saute the onion until it's translucent then add the garlic for a little while.  Don't burn the garlic.  Then add 2 cans of tomato paste.  Let it sit there for a little while and flatten it out.  (Your olive oil will turn a delightful orange that will your children will marvel over.)
cooking the onion.

smushing or flattening your tomato paste.

Once you've flattened and "smushed" the paste, add 2 x cans of crushed tomatoes.  If you're feeling froggy, you can add your own fresh crushed tomatoes if that's your thing.

We then add the spices, salt, a little black pepper and red pepper.  Spices are our own blend of seasoning, some of it home-grown and dried and some of it store bought.  You'll need basil, parsley, a little oregano and thyme, and about a teaspoon of salt and 3 shakes of black pepper.  (no more, no less).

Oh and here is an important step you might want to make about now...for every can of tomato paste you use, fill empty tomato paste can with water and dump it in.  That stretches your sauce a little so it's not too thick.

Let it simmer for an hour or 2 or 3 depending on how hungry you are or how much time you have.

It's actually good enough to eat "ascuitta" now, or lightly coating the macaroni.  This is how Italians eat it.  Like real Italians.  In Italy.

So after you simmer the sauce, you add my secret ingredient which gives you the most amazing flavor and totally explains why you only put 1 teaspoon of salt in (I knew you were wondering...).  I add about 1 to almost 2 tablespoons of parmesan or romano (or both!) cheese to the sauce.  This gives it an amazing flavor, extra body and thickening.  You can technically use shaker cheese but obviously the fresh grated stuff is best.
So this is what it looks like outside now.  Does that make the sauce taste better?  Possibly.
The weather outside is frightful, but my sauce is so delightful!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Burgers! Happy 4th of July!

Hello everyone and Happy 4th of July to my American blogging friends.  In the USA today is a day of BBQs and parties.  Leonor is working her overtime period now so it was the little one and I all day today.  I grilled some sausage in the morning for breakfast and immediately grilled burgers after that.

I dont like to use the blog to pitch products or goods, but today I bought a box of "Bubba" burgers (I know..sounds appetizing huh?).  These are 1/3 pound burgers that are lightly seasoned and HUGE as in 1 fills you up and 2 is just asking for trouble.

The burgers are supposed to be placed right on the grill while frozen which is incredibly convenient.  Something else I like about them?  They're shaped like the state of Texas.  A neat little surprise I found out after opening the package.  The ingredients are supposed to be straightforward (beef) and to be honest they tasted that way.  Worth every penny of the 10 dollars it cost to buy a box.  I liked it so much I had one for lunch and we are having one for dinner!
Breakfast Sausage patties.

Bubba Burgers in all their glory!!  The suckers are HUGE!

Well I am certainly enjoying the holiday today and I sincerely hope everyone else is as well!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Portuguese Bifana (bee-fah-nah)

Tonight Leonor made one of my favorites -  Portuguese Bifana which is technically "supposed" to be a sandwich made with pork cutlets but she likes to make them with steak (i guess technically it's not a bifana but what the hell, same recipe).  We cut out some carbs tonight and had it on the plate instead of as a sandwich.

Tonight we had it along with some more fresh lettuce from our garden.  A very successful meal.  We don't eat alot of steak here, so it was obviously important enough to put in the blog!
That's steam coming off of the steak.  You know you want some.

 Here is my exclusive interview with the cook....

Q: So Leonor, what goes into your bifana?
A: A ton of sliced and chopped garlic.  Sweet paprika, salt, and dry red wine.  Marinate overnight but to make it even better, a full 24 hours.

Q: How do you prepare it?

I cut up the french fries and we baked them with a little salt and pepper.
A: You put  it in a pot with some water, enough to cover the beef.  Add a little olive oil and cook until it's done, turning every so often.  I let it cook until there is a thick sauce or gravy there.

Q: How do you serve it?
A:  It's supposed to be eaten with French Fries.  In Portugal and in Portuguese restaurants a bifana is usually eaten with french fries.

Delicious.  You can see a little bit of the garlic and some of the sauce.

Monday, June 3, 2013

The Good Life...Grilled Strip Steak, Baked Potato and Fresh Greens Salad.

This post isn't about recipes but more about a recent dinner the Mrs. and I prepared. and ate on our patio.  We bought 2 fresh Strip Steaks from Wegmans, and picked some younger lettuce shoots from the garden for a salad.

We grilled the steaks, about 4 to 5 minutes per side on the grill.  I coated the potatoes in olive oil and sprinkled "montreal steak" seasoning on them and left them on the grill for about 45-50 minutes, wrapped in aluminum foil.

The wife added chopped onion, cherry tomato, and some carrots along with oil and vinegar to the fresh picked lettuce.  It was really an unforgettable meal.
LOOK at that lettuce!  I was beaming with pride...

For growing it in a pot, i'm surprised at how much we got.

finished product.  thank you wife for your skillful chopping!

I'm sorry I didn't get any pictures of the steak before we grilled it.  It was a beautiful cut of meat too! (read that as expen$ive!)
Leonor likes her steak VERY well done...Mine on the other hand medium-rare.

I sprinkled a little "montreal steak" on the steaks prior to grilling.  that was the only prep that went into them.
I did not want to use the blog for any endorsements of products, but if you eve want a meat seasoning that is literally "no fail" I recommend looking into the "Grill Mate" line by Mccormick.  Montreal Steak has everything you could want to season meat.  I like it for poultry as well, but they also have one for chicken...
You can research Montreal Steak and other seasonings here.

Probably the only thing missing was a nice cold beer or glass of wine.  I had my home-made hard cider with this meal.  Which was good, but I think the wine or beer would have been better.