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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Shrimp Scampi

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We posted our Shrimp Scampi recipe back in January. We got the recipe from Allen's Mom who first made it for us some years back and we loved it! It is so delicious. It is our go to scampi recipe and we made it tonight. We just added a little more butter this time.

Shrimp Scampi close-up - yummy!
Here is the Shrimp Scampi recipe:
http://twofrys.blogspot.com/2011/01/shrimp-scampi-jasmine-rice.html.

Jasmine Rice
We made Jasmine Rice in our rice cooker. There is no better way to get perfect rice ever time and the rice cooker does all the work.

-Sophia & Allen/Two Frys

Red Velvet Snowball Cake

Pin It Red Velvet Snowball Cake

Red Velvet Snowball Cake
Last year, I made this cake but I used dark chocolate and not enough red coloring so I didn't achieve the standard red velvet color. This year, I made it on New Year's Eve and finally hit a home run with this cake. I followed the recipe as is and was so pleased with the results. I first came across this recipe from Redbook Magazine, December 2009 issue and thought it was so beautiful. I make alot of Ina Garten's Coconut Cake throughout the year as is and this reminds me of that from the outside. The red velvet color and taste of the cake is almost perfection. The recipe divides each cake layer in half making 4 layers, but I kept my cake a two-layer one.

Red Velvet Snowball Cake - just sublime!
I found the recipe online on Redbook's site so I hope you will consider trying this Red Velvet Snowball Cake:
http://www.redbookmag.com/recipefinder/red-velvet-snowball-cake-recipe

Allen and I really enjoyed the taste of the cake which was rich but not heavy. My Mom and one of her friends loved it too. I think this cake is one of my best tasting cakes. If you make it, you will not be disappointed.

Red Velvet Snowball Cake being gobbled up.
Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Dinner

Pin It Christmas Dinner

Every Christmas my better half likes to cook a feast for us providing an abundance of leftovers for days. This year, I contributed one dish - my Sour Cream Chives Mashed Potatoes. Hubby made Spiral Sliced Honey Ham, Cornbread Stuffing, Green Bean Casserole and Mushroom Gravy.

Spiral Sliced Honey Ham with Pineapples

Sliced Pineapples were added to the Spiral Sliced Honey Ham in the last 30 minutes for added flavor that complimented the glaze. The pineapples did not lose their texture and had a smokey flavor from the Ham.

The Cornbread Stuffing was different this year by adding Mushrooms to the recipe.

Cornbread Stuffing with Mushrooms
I made Sour Cream Chives Mashed Potatoes and they were divine, so rich and creamy. Here is the recipe:  
Sour Cream Chives Mashed Potatoes
 Ingredients:
3 pounds Potatoes

3 Tablespoons Chives

1/2 cup Sour Cream

1 1/2 cups Milk

6 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter

Kosher Salt

Chop Chives and set aside for now.

Peel and cut Potatoes in half and then in 3-4 sections. Place Potatoes in a large pot with cold water and add Kosher Salt. Bring Potatoes to a boil on medium-high heat, then lower heat and simmer uncovered for 12-13 minutes. Make sure Potatoes are fork tender.

In a small saucepan, heat Milk and Butter until Butter melts and it is hot. Do not let it boil. Remove from heat until Potatoes are cooked.

When Potatoes are cooked, drain in colander and return to pot or a large bowl and mash the Potatoes with a masher or use a food mill if you have one. Slowly add Butter/Milk mixture and stir with a spatula. Keep adding enough until it has a creamy texture.

Add 2 Teaspoons of Kosher Salt, Sour Cream, and Chives and blend together well. Taste and add more salt if you wish.

Green Bean Casserole with Loeb's Onion Crunch
The Green Bean Casserole was so delicious and baked with Loeb's Onion Crunch. Once the casserole was out of the oven, we sprinkled more Loeb's Onion Crunch which added a great depth of flavor and a crunchy texture that we loved. This product tastes so much better than other brands we have tried in the past. I recommend this product wholeheartedly and will be sprinkling the rest on salad, burgers and hotdogs. I love the size of the container since it is 12 oz so you can use it for several meals. You can purchase Loeb's Onion Crunch at http://www.onioncrunch.com/ and tell them you heard about them from Two Fry's.

Mushroom Gravy
For the Gravy, we added Mushrooms since we love them so much and had a ton we had to use while they were fresh. Try this next time you make Gravy.

-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys

Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Cookies

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Holiday Cookies 

Spritz, Red Velvet Swirls, Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies
This year, I made triple the amount of cookies from last Christmas. I have no idea why but it happened. I wanted to try some new recipes other than sugar cookies and gingerbread cookies so I also made red velvet swirls, coconut chocolate chip cookies and holiday spritz cookies. I wish I started a day earlier since this took so much time in my small kitchen. I do not have a lot of counter space so baking of this magnitude was quite a challenge. I had to clear both of my counter tops in order to have enough space to decorate the cookies. It was back breaking at times but a lot of fun though. It is great giving away cookies to your loved ones so if you can you should try baking some for your friends and family. They will be very glad you did and they are very tasty too.

December 22nd:
I have a Cuisinart Electric Cookie Press and made Holiday Spritz Cookies for the first time. I used the recipe in Cook’s Illustrated Holiday Baking Magazine, 2011, pgs. 26-27. These spritz cookies were delicious. I just need to get a hang of the cookie press but I did OK for my first try. Next year, I will tint the dough and make them in multiple colors and use more designs.

Holiday Spritz Cookies
My original plan was to make Red Velvet Pinwheel Cookies but the temperature outside was so hot (in NYC this time of year-what?) so I had problems working with the dough. To make the best of out my situation, I ended up making two variations of Red Velvet Swirls just playing with the dough as best as I could. The recipe for red velvet pinwheel cookies is from Pillsbury Best Holiday Desserts Magazine #72, pgs. 59-60. If like me you have never made pinwheel cookies, Google "a how to" video for tips. These cookies are very chewy and soft with a cake like texture and real yummy.

Red Velvet Swirls
My favorite cookie of all the ones I baked were these Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies. I am just so in love with coconut so maybe that is the reason why. The recipe I used is from Taste of Home Cookies Cookbook, pg. 55. These cookies are delectable.

Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies
December 23rd:
I am not an artist so I worked slow and did my best to make the Sugar Cookies pretty. I doubled the Sugar Cookies recipe from the batch I made the week prior. You can find the recipe here: http://twofrys.blogspot.com/2011/12/holiday-cookies.html. I used small and large snowflakes, two different Christmas trees, star, snowman, heart and round cutouts.

Snowflake Sugar Cookies

Large Snowflake Sugar Cookies
I used Wilton and Betty Crocker Decorating Icing in several colors, but was unable to find any in white and was desperate so I made some. Next year, I will make sure I stock up on these much earlier or plan my ingredients ahead of time and make my own icing.

Here is the Decorating Icing recipe:

Ingredients:
1 Egg White

3 ½ Cups Confectioners Sugar

1 Teaspoon Pure Almond Extract

3 Tablespoons Water

Christmas Trees Sugar Cookies

Stars, Christmas Trees, Snowflakes Sugar Cookies
Beat Egg White in a large bowl with an electric mixer at high speed for several minutes until foamy.

Gradually add Confectioners Sugar, Almond Extract and Water. Continue beating until smooth and glossy.

Decorate cookies using icing in pastry bag. Allow icing to dry before stacking them together or putting them in cookie gift tins or bags.
 
Snowmen Sugar Cookies

Lots of Sugar Cookies
For the Gingerbread Boys & Girls, I used Betty Crocker Gingerbread Cookie Mix.

Gingerbread Boys & Girls
Here is the Gingerbread recipe:
Ingredients:
1 Stick Butter

1 Extra Large Egg

1 Tablespoon Water

Stir Gingerbread Mix, Softened Butter, Egg and Water in a large bowl until a soft dough forms.

Form dough into a large ball, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for ½ hour to 1 hour.

More Gingerbreads
Lightly flour work surface and rolling pin to prevent dough from sticking. Use your Gingerbread cutters and continue to flour surface and rolling pin as needed. I used a silicon mat to roll the dough and do the cutouts and it worked great. If dough starts sticking, place in refrigerator for ½ hour.

Heat oven to 375 degrees.

Place the Gingerbread cutouts 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake 8-11 minutes.

Cool for 2-3 minutes before transferring to cooling racks. Do not wait longer or they make stick to the cookie sheets. I know, I broke about 4 of them.

Cool completely for about 1 hour before decorating.

Hearts Sugar Cookies
Some tips from personal experience:
Before starting a recipe, be sure to have all your ingredients measured ahead of time. It is not fun running to the supermarket in the wee hours of the night.

Gels and cake/cupcake Frosting does not work well with Sugar Cookies. They do not harden up like Decorating Icing. If you have to stack or package cookies, do not use Gels or Frosting.

To make sure decorating sugars, sprinkles, etc. stick to your Spritz Cookies use a spray bottle filled with water, and gently spray and add your decorations.

To decorate Sugar Cookies, use artist brushes to flood the cookies and toothpicks to help you with decorations. I got 24 artist brushes for .99 cents at my local dollar store.

To soften butter, place in the microwave for 5-15 seconds. Start with 5 seconds then check it and continue to microwave 5 seconds at a time until butter is soft. Allow to cool before adding to recipe.

When you fill a pastry bag or clear storage bag, keep a clip on the tip so the icing does not run out and make a mess all over the darn place.

Ornament Sugar Cookies
When you cut out the tip of the pastry bag be sure to make it small otherwise decorating will be a pain in the ass.

When working with dough, always refrigerate for ½ hour to an 1 hour to make it easy to do cutouts.

Decorating Icing dries up quickly so add your decorations ASAP and then let the cookies dry completely before stacking or packing them in gift tins. My Gingerbreads dried so fast I was unable to add any decorations. Do one at a time.

Place parchment paper or paper towels under cooling racks so they catch your decorating mess and do not stain your counter tops or table.

Try to have many cookie sheets because you have to let them cool completely before putting them back in the oven with more cookies.

Lastly, do not eat all the cookies that break at once. Place them in a cookie jar. There is no need to give yourself a tummy ache and be in a sugar coma when you have so much to do.

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Holiday Cookies

Pin It Holiday Cookies
Cookie Baking set up. Ready. Set. Go.
Last Sunday, I baked holiday cookies. I have lots more baking to do but this was the first batch and most were mailed to Cali to hubby's parents, some for us and for a gift. For the Gingerbread Cookies, I used Betty Crocker Gingerbread Cookie Mix and followed the package directions and added 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract.

Sugar Cookies
For the Sugar Cookies, I used Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix. Recipe follows.

Sugar Cookies. Allen did all the Christmas Trees!
Sugar Cookies ingredients:
2 (17.5) packages Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix

2 Extra Large Eggs, lightly beaten

4 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2/3 cups butter, softened

2 teaspoons whole milk

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Oops blurry, Snowmen, Snowflakes and 3 Gingerbreads
Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, mix together cookie mix, flour, eggs, butter, milk and vanilla until a stiff dough forms.

On a floured surface, take dough and form it into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and place in freezer until it hardens up and becomes easy to work with. In the meantime, take a rolling pin and rub flour all over it.

Once the dough hardens up roll dough to desired thickness and use your cookie cutters to make shapes.

Place cookies in ungreased cookie sheets and space them far enough so they don't end up stuck together.

Gingerbreads we both did together.
Bake for 7 to 9 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.

Place parchment paper under your wire racks so when you decorate you won't make a mess.

More Gingerbreads we decorated.
Cool cookies in pans for a few minutes and then remove them and place on wire racks and cool completely (about 1 hour). After the cookies are cooled, enjoy decorating them with royal icing and your sanding sugars, sparkles, etc.

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Friday, December 16, 2011

Happy Holidays - Help City Harvest

Pin It Help Others during the holidays (and year round) in NYC - Support City Harvest NYC

City Harvest needs all of us to help them save food for the hungry!

Serving New York City for more than 25 years, City Harvest is the world's first food rescue organization, dedicated to feeding the city's hungry men, women, and children.This year, City Harvest will collect more than 30 million pounds of excess food from all segments of the food industry, including restaurants, grocers, corporate cafeterias, manufacturers, and farms. This food is then delivered free of charge to nearly 600 community food programs throughout New York City using a fleet of trucks and bikes as well as volunteers on foot.

Each week, City Harvest helps over 300,000 hungry New Yorkers find their next meal.The most needed foods are:
■canned fruit
■canned vegetables
■peanut butter (plastic jars)
■mac and cheese (packaged)
■hot and cold cereal (packaged, family-sized)
 
Online Information:
http://www.cityharvest.org/

Online Donations:
http://www.cityharvest.org/donate-funds/
 
A little bit can go a long way this holiday and anytime.
 
Happy Holidays from The Two Frys Foodie Blog.
 
-Allen/Two Frys

Monday, December 5, 2011

Pecan Pie

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Pecan Pie - golden and so delicious.
I made this Pecan Pie yesterday and it was my first one and came out great. It was so easy too. I used the recipe from Pillsbury Best Holiday Desserts magazine I subscribe to (p.11-12). You gotta try it.

Ingredients:

1 Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust.

1/3 cup packed brown sugar.

1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour.

1 1/4 cups light corn syrup.

1 1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract.

3 large eggs.

1 1/2 cups pecan halves or pieces.

2 tablespoons butter.

Instructions:

Let Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust come to room temperature for 15 minutes and then place into glass pie baking dish and press sides and bottom firmly. Use the edge of a fork around the crust.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Melt butter on stove top or microwave and let it cool. If you use a microwave it will melt in 30 seconds on medium-high setting.

In a large bowl, mix brown sugar, flour, corn syrup, vanilla extract and eggs until well blended.

Using a spatula, stir in pecans and butter and fold together.

Pour into pie shell. Place pie dish onto a baking sheet.

Bake for 40 to 50 minutes (mine took 50 minutes) until the filling has puffed up and the pie is golden brown. I started checking mine at the 40 minute mark and kept checking it every 5 minutes until it was done.

Place pie on cooling rack and let it cool completely for 2 hours and then refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours before you serve it.

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Pumpkin Pie

Pin It Pumpkin Pie
Pumpkin Pie
For Thanksgiving, I made this Pumpkin Pie recipe to take to my Mom's dinner and everyone loved it. Today I made one because I was in the mood for some. I used the Libby's recipe that has been on their pumpkin can labels since 1950 but added nutmeg to mine.

Ingredients:
3/4 cup granulated sugar.

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon.

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg.

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves.

2 large eggs.

1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S 100% Pure Pumpkin.

1 can (12 oz.) NESTLE CARNATION evaporated milk.

1 Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust and an extra one if you are decorating with pie cut outs.

Instructions:
Let Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust come to room temperature for 15 minutes and then place into glass pie baking dish and press sides and bottom firmly. Use the edge of a fork around the crust.

If you have pie cut outs, brush them with a little egg wash and sprinkle lightly with sugar. Place them in a baking sheet and put aside for now.

In a bowl add sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves and combine. Put aside for now.

In a large bowl, beat eggs for just a minute or two and then add pumpkin and mix together for another minute. Add sugar-spice concoction and mix together for another minute. Gradually add evaporated milk as you mix until combined.

Pour into pie shell.

Bake pumpkin pie in preheated oven at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. If you have cut outs, place them in the oven for 7 to 10 minutes on a baking sheet until the crust is golden brown and remove and let them cool on wire rack for 1/2 hour. After the first 15 minutes, reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake pumpkin pie for another 40 to 55 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Mine took 55 minutes so watch it closely once you get to the 40 minute mark.

Cool pumpkin pie on a wire rack for 2 hours. If you have cut outs place them on pumpkin pie after the pie has cooled for 20 minutes. Refrigerate pie after 2 hours or serve. Enjoy with a dollop of whip cream with a sprinkle of pumpkin spice over it.

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Chicken Thighs

Pin It Chicken Thighs
Chicken Thighs
I like to serve chicken thighs with potato salad or spanish yellow rice with olives and black beans. Tonight, I went with potato salad and you can get the recipe at: http://twofrys.blogspot.com/2011/04/potato-salad.html

I always bake my chicken thighs. Unlike chicken breasts which can end up dry and plain, chicken thighs are juicy, full of flavor and I prefer dark meat. I usually buy the 10 pack of skinless, boneless chicken thighs since it is alot cheaper and I get a few more meals out of it.

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Use large Pyrex glass baking dish or whatever you have.

Take chicken thighs and pat them dry with a paper towel.

Rub thighs on both sides with vegetable oil.

Season both sides of thighs liberally with kosher salt.

Season thighs liberally on both sides with Badia Gourmet Blends Poultry Seasoning or whichever brand you use.

Chop 1or 2 onions in chunks and place them around and on top of the thighs. This is optional but it really does pump up the flavor.

Bake for 40-55 minutes and turn half way through cooking process.

Chop some scallions and sprinkle over top and serve.

Store leftovers in the fridge or freezer. If you do not plan to eat leftovers the next day or two, freeze the remaining thighs.

-Sophia/Two Frys

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Turkey Salad

Pin It Turkey Salad
Turkey Salad sandwich - so yummy! :)
I brought turkey home from my Mom's Thanksgiving feast and after eating some on Friday and still having leftovers, I made this turkey salad recipe for dinner. I love dark meat so that is what I used for this recipe. I am listing the ingredients I used but not how much since you should add as much or as little of each ingredient according to your taste preference. I used alot of relish.

Ingredients:
Cut Turkey into small chunks and add to a large bowl.

Add finely chopped Shallot.

Add Mayonnaise.

Add Relish.

Add Kosher Salt and Black Pepper.

Add Apple Cider Vinegar.

Add a little freshly squeezed Lemon.

Mix ingredients together and put aside.

Turkey Salad with pickles and chips!
Spread some butter on Sesame Seed Buns or whatever bread you have on hand and toast on grill. Make your sandwiches and add your favorite toppings. I used roma tomatoes, lettuce, and shredded carrots. Serve with chips (like sour crean and onion or salt and vinegar) and pickles. We love Crazy Steve's Insane Pickles which have the perfect kick - just the right amount of spice and are so delicious! You can add pickles to your sandwich but we enjoyed the pickles on the side. Enjoy!

For more information and buying locations for Crazy Steve's Pickles & Salsa go to:
http://www.crazystevespickles.com/.

-Sophia/Two Frys

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Apple Pie

Pin It Apple Pie

Apple Pie

This is my go to Apple Pie recipe I adapted from the Pillsbury site. The only thing I do different is add more cinnamon and ground nutmeg to the original recipe for more flavor.

For the crust:
I use 1 box of Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crusts and let it stand at room temperature for 15 minutes.

For the filling:
5-6 apples thinly sliced. I use firm Granny Smith apples since I like the tart taste. Sprinkle a little lemon juice on them as you slice to prevent them from turning brown.

3/4 cup granulated sugar.

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour.

1/4 teaspoon salt.

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon.

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg.

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice.

For the crust topping:
Gently beat 1 egg white.

1 teaspoon granulated sugar to sprinkle over crust.

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. After pie crust has reached room temperature, place 1 pie crust into pie dish. Press the crust firmly on the bottom and sides.

In a large bowl, gently mix all the filling ingredients until they are all combined. Place into pie dish and top with the second crust. Take any excess crust and tuck in and seal together and crimp. Make 4 slits on top of crust and add any decorative crust cut outs like the apple ones I used from Paula Deen. Brush the crust lightly with egg white and sprinkle sugar over it.

Bake the pie for 40-55 minutes until apples are tender and crust is golden brown. Cover the edge of the crust with a pie shield or with cut strips of aluminum foil after the first 20 minutes to prevent burnt edges.

After you take pie out of oven, let it cool on a cooling rack for 2-3 hours before serving.

Enjoy with a dollop of whip cream or a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. :)

-Sophia/Two Frys

Friday, November 4, 2011

Asian Stir Fry Beef & Noodles

Pin It Asian Stir Fry Beef & Noodles

Asian Stir Fry Beef & Noodles
We have not gotten our new electric stove yet so we are depending on several electric appliances for our cooking these days. We bought an electric skillet and this was the first dinner concoction I came up with. This meal is delicious and takes less than 20 minutes to prepare.

Ingredients
Kosher Salt
1 tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1/4 cup Water
1 - 1 1/2 packages of Asian Stir Fry Frozen Vegetables
1 package of Beef Round Stew Meat cut into small chunks
1/2 - 1 bottle of Stir Fry Sauce (La Choy Stir Fry Original Sauce)
1 tablespoon Less Sodium Soy Sauce (Kikkoman Soy Sauce)
1 teaspoon Japanese Sesame Oil (Sushi Chef Sesame Oil)
2 packages of Ramen Noodles

Add Vegetable Oil to Skillet.
Season both sides of Beef with Kosher Salt and when skillet is hot add Beef, close lid and cook for 8-10 minutes. Flip Beef over half way through cooking time.
Add Water, Stir Fry Sauce, Soy Sauce, Sesame Oil and frozen Stir Fry Vegetables. I added a lot of Stir Fry Sauce because I like a lot of sauce, so start with half of the bottle and eyeball it to your preference. I also had half of a Stir Fry Vegetable package in the freezer so I added it to have extra Veggies in the dish. I used 1 1/2 packages. Close lid and cook for 6-8 minutes.

While the Veggies are doing their thing, make 2 packages of Ramen Noodles according to package directions and break each in half. Do not use the seasoning packet, either reserve for future use or discard. Add Ramen Noodles 1 minute before Stir Fry Veggies are cooked through, mix well and close lid.

After 1 minute serve and enjoy. So tasty. You will love this. Yum! :)

-Sophia/Two Frys

Thursday, November 3, 2011

BBQ Chicken Drumettes & Wings Crock Pot Style

Pin It BBQ Chicken Drumettes & Wings Crock Pot Style


Chicken Drumettes & Wings ready to cook for 3 hours

Ingredients
2 packages (2 1/2 - 3 pounds) Chicken Drumettes & Wing Portions
1 16-19 oz bottle BBQ Sauce
2 tablespoons White Vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce
1/4 cup Tomato Paste
1 Yellow Onion
Kosher Salt

Take Chicken and pat down dry with paper towels.
Slice 1 Yellow Onion into wedges.
Season both sides of Chicken Drumettes & Wings with Kosher Salt.
Add Chicken and Onion wedges to Crock Pot.

BBQ Wings w/Guy Fieri Barbeque Sauce Kansas City Smokey & Sweet
In a bowl, combine (Guy Fieri Barbeque Sauce Kansas City Smokey & Sweet) BBQ Sauce, (Amore Double Concentrated Tomato Paste) Tomato Paste, White Vinegar, and Worcestershire Sauce. Pour over the chicken.

Cover and cook on high for 3 hours. Yum! Freeze leftovers.

-Sophia/Two Frys

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Meatball Hoagies

Pin It Meatball Hoagies

This meal was made using my Crock Pot and many more recipes using it will posted in the near future. On October 13, a shorted feeder cable fire caused a manhole explosion in the street in front of my building. We did not have power for 16 hours and the gas was not restored in our building due to some safety tests the building did not pass. Instead of fixing the gas problem, (for financial reasons I presume) the landlord decided to convert the entire building to electric stoves. This means over 70 units need to have electrical wiring installed before the new electric stoves are set up in each apartment. I am really bummed out since we love to cook and we are in this situation for about another month or so. On October 21, our gas stove was removed and we have been using the Microwave, Rice Cooker and Crock Pot to get by. This upcoming week we are purchasing a George Foreman Grill thanks to a gift from my mother-in-law. If we have enough money left, we may also get an electric skillet. I created this super easy recipe using the Crock Pot and it was so delicious.

Meatballs when cooked. Yum!
Ingredients
1 package Hoagie Rolls
Provolone Cheese
Tomatoes
1 package-32 oz Frozen Italian Style Meatballs
1 Red Onion
26 oz Marinara or Meat Pasta Sauce
1 tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar
½ teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper (optional)
1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning

(Note: I put the brand I used in parentheses but of course you can use any brand you like. I buy what I find on sale these days).

Martin's Hoagie Rolls
Cut a red onion into wedges and place in a Crock Pot and top with (Cooked Perfect) Frozen Italian Style Meatballs.

In a bowl, combine (Hunt's) Meat Pasta Sauce, (Rienzi) Red Wine Vinegar, (Badia) Crushed Red Pepper, and (Badia) Italian Seasoning. Pour the sauce mixture over the balls. Make sure they are coated evenly.

Cook on high setting for 2 hours.

Before serving, stir Meatballs together.

Meatball Hoagie
Slice Tomatoes. Take (Martin's) Hoagie Rolls place Provolone Cheese and sliced Tomatoes and about 4 Meatballs in each. Top with sauce and some of the Onions if desired. Enjoy.

Store the leftovers in a freezable container for future meals.

-Sophia/Two Frys

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Cook Like A Rock Star 125 Recipes, Lessons, and Culinary Secrets – Anne Burrell

Pin It Cook Like A Rock Star 125 Recipes, Lessons, and Culinary Secrets – Anne Burrell
with Suzanne Lenzer
Foreword by Mario Batali
Clarkson Potter/Publishers, New York

Cook Like A Rock Star - Anne Burrell
I have been watching Anne Burrell on the Food Network since her first season of Secrets of a Restaurant Chef and enjoy watching her as co-host of Worst Cooks in America and as Mario Batali's Sous Chef on Iron Chef America. The recipes in this cookbook look delicious and Chef Anne Burrell breaks things down to simplicity so the home cook is comfortable making these dishes no matter the level of cooking expertise. Chef Anne's vibrant and colorful personality is captured perfectly in this cookbook and the recipes are just like her exciting and beautiful.

Cook Like A Rock Star is divided into six sections: Piccolini (a.k.a. my little nibbles), Firsts (the introduction), Pasta (my passion), Seconds (the main event), Sides (the sparkle factor) and Desserts (my sweeties!). The cookbook starts with a six-page Introduction, and a list of Chef Anne Burrell's favorite tools, basic pantry must haves and a breakdown of terms and Anne-isms necessary to follow the recipes. It's very easy trust me! The pictures are beautiful and I love that Chef Anne Burrell takes the time to offer great cooking tips and techniques from her many years of cooking experience and expertise. Chef Anne loves bacon and it shows in many of the recipes that feature a love for all things pig. For days when you want to stray away from meat there are many vegetarian recipes as well to indulge in.

I recently saw Chef Anne make Zucchini & Parm Fritters on The Chew and it is one of the recipes in the Piccolini section. There are many scrumpous looking recipes to make here great for entertaining with friends, family or with your significant other. These small bites look divine, such as Polpettini (Yummy Little Meatballs), Sausage & Pancetta Stuffed Mushrooms, Grilled Corn, Bacon & Chili Crostini, Truffeled Deviled Eggs, Cipolline Tempura With Aïoli, and White Bean Purée With Prosciutto.

Firsts features appetizers and there are a variety of delectable recipes to choose. The recipes are diverse and look delicious, such as Grilled Pizzetta With Stracchino, Sausage, Arugula & Chili Oil, Grilled Porcini With Poached Egg & Parmigiano, Spiced Chickpea Soup With Crispy, Crunchy Croutons, Pumpkin Soup With Allspice Whipped Cream & Fried Leeks, Roasted Beet & Many-Herb Salad, and My Big Fat Chicken Soup. Is your mouth watering already or what?

Chef Anne Burrell
Pasta is of course my favorite chapter in this cookbook and it is Chef Anne's passion. The first thing the chapter starts out with is Chef Anne's All-Purpose Pasta Dough and Whole Wheat Pasta. All the recipes look amazing but I really look forward to making Spag & Excellent "Meatbawls," Chef Anne's Light-As-A-Cloud Gnocchi, Sweet & Spicy Sausage Ragú, Pasta Carbonara, Pasta Fagioli, Buccatini All'Amatriciana, Wild Mushroom Ragú, Orecchiette With Broccoli Rabe Pesto & Sausage, Chef Anne's Risotto – Without-A-Recipe and Killer Mac & Cheese With Bacon.

Seconds features main course recipes and I hope to make every one of them within the next year. Some choice picks to try are Polpetti Burgers, Chicken Thighs With Mushrooms & Almond Purée, Pork Milanese & Escarole Salad With Pickled Red Onions, Hazelnuts & Pecorino, Cheater's Duck Confit & Bitter Greens, Braised Lamb Shanks, Seared Red Snapper With Sicilian Cauliflower & Parsley Salad, Dry Rubbed Bone-In Rib Eye (Just Good Stuff), and Halibut In Paper With Yummy Summer Veg.

Sides are a special part of every meal and Chef Anne has a lovely selection that pair wonderfully with the other recipes in this cookbook. I am excited to make her Cannelini Beans With Pancetta & Rosemary, Spice-Roasted Cauliflower & Jerusalem Artichokes, Stewed Zucchini With Tomatoes, Oregano & Pine Nuts, Sweet Potato & Apple Hash, Chanterelles, Fava Beans & Spring Onions and Crispy Crunchy Duck Fat Potatoes.

The final chapter Desserts has 14 recipes that will compliment your dinner party or satisfy your sweet tooth any day of the week. The recipes I am compelled to make are Hazelnut Cake With Nutella Mousse, Zeppole & Chocolate Dipper, Strawberry-Raspberry Shortcakes, Lemon Curd Tart With Almond Crust, Blueberry Nectarine Crisp, Juicy, Jammy, Jelly Tart and Apple & Olive Cake With Sautéed Apples & Mascarpone.

My thought on Cook Like A Rock Star is that is a kick-ass cookbook coming from a culinary rock star. I fully recommend Chef Anne's debut cookbook and really look forward to cooking with her in my kitchen. Thanks hubster for buying me this! Love It.

For more information on Chef Anne Burrell, check out:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/chefs/anne-burrell/index.html
http://www.foodnetwork.com/secrets-of-a-restaurant-chef/index.html

-Sophia/Two Frys

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Fall Harvest Festival - NYS Agriculture Tastings - Yonkers, NY

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Fall Harvest Festival
At Empire City/Yonkers Raceway - Yonkers, NY.
Saturday October 22, 2011
5:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Kick off the Fall season with the Empire City Fall Harvest Festival.

They are celebrating harness racing and New York State agriculture (New York State Apple, Cheese and Wine) product sampling. Bring the whole family for horse racing, live music, food and more.

The leaves begin to change color, a sure sign that Autumn is in the air, and that the Fall Harvest Festival is back for its third year at Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway on Saturday, October 22. The one-day celebration of New York State harness racing, agriculture and produce for fans of all ages is on the schedule from 5:30 to 9:30 pm on the horse track apron. Admission is free.

There will be activities for the young and those young at heart: harness races, pony rides, a petting zoo, pumpkin painting, and musical entertainment. There will also be New York State Apple, Cheese and Wine product sampling. Two large tents will house the musical entertainment, as well as a wide variety of food and beverages for the entire family (Last year they had BBQ Hot Dogs, Burgers, Sausages, Drinks and much much more for reasonable prices). There will be a free pinecone scented candle giveaway, for Empire Club members, as well as a pie-eating contest featuring Yonkers Raceway's drivers squaring off against public contestants.
 
Check the Empire City Website for more details and directions.
 
This is a fun annual event we like and think you will also.
 
-Allen/One of Two Fry's

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Part 1 of 2: Party In Guy's Garage: The Festival Closing Party

Pin It Part 1 of 2: Party In Guy's Garage: The Festival Closing Party

Allen rocking the neon shades and having grub
Sunday, October 2, 2011, 9pm-Midnight
Highline Stages, 440 West 15th Street, 9th and 10th Avenues
Food Network New York City Wine and Food Festival
Presented by Food & Wine
Proceeds Benefit Food Bank For NYC and Share Our Strength

Allen and I had a great time at Party In Guy's Garage: The Festival Closing Party. Highline Stages is located in the heart of the Meatpacking District and across from the Chelsea Market and Food Network. As we entered, we each received a nifty Guy Fieri glass. The music was festive, loud, and pure 80s with clips of cheesy films from the era on a huge screen in the front room. There was plenty of great food, drinks and loud music.

Celebrity Chefs spotted throughout the evening were Robert Irvine, Claire Robinson, Anne Burrell, Andrew Zimmern, and Nadia G. Guy had his own food station and served the crowd yummy pork sliders and sausages featuring his new line of BBQ sauces and signature salsas. There was a mob around this area when Guy was there, but I was able to get a few decent shots. Unfortunately, Guy was surrounded by his manager, security guards, friends, and the crowd was HUGE, so we were unable to speak to him or get a picture with him.

Guy Fieri giving fans pork sliders

Guy Fieri (far left), Robert Irvine and Guy's Krew

Delicious sausage at the Guy Fieri table, sauces are tasty too

As you listened to 80s tunes, you could go around both rooms and sample food from these participating eateries: Artichoke Basille's Pizza, Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill, This Little Piggy Had Roast Beef, Led Zeppole, The Commodore, Levain Bakery, No. 7/No. 7 Sub/Weather Up. I had a pork slider from the Guy table with one of Guy's BBQ sauces. The pork was flavorful and juicy, and the crunch from the slaw and Guy's BBQ sauce was yummy. I also had a Mini Beef Patty from Golden Krust, and it was a little spicy and delicious. I tried samples of dark chocolate peanut butter and oatmeal raisin cookies from Levain Bakery, and they were so rich and comforting. I wanted more but held back!

Mini Beef Patties from Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill

Spicy Chicken Wings from Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill

Allen's Comments: I really loved the Artichoke Pizza from Artichoke Basille's Pizza and was some of the best pizza I ever had. This NYC based company has my heart and now stomach at their disposal. I never had such a great tasting pizza, it was heavenly. It reminded me of awesome soup flavoring (homemade of course), topped with cheeses and artichoke goodness. I wish I could replicate this but instead will go dine at one of the fine establishments they run. This pizza rocked right up there with Guy Fieri's table which was right next to them and featured "mucho" beef, pork, sausage, Guy Fieri BBQ Sauces, tortilla chips and salsas. There was not a dull item here. The sausage was awesome with the hot edged (but not burning) Guy Fieri Carolina #6 BBQ Sauce. Slap that sauce on your grub because it rocks. They also served the best beef, and on the side I had a favorite of mine Guy Fieri Bourbon Brown Sugar BBQ Sauce, which I ordered from the Food Network site last month. There was delicious Guy Fieri Salsa Verde Green & Mean and a selection of red salsas and they loaded everyone up with fresh tortilla chips.

Allen's Artichoke Pizza from Artichoke Basille’s Pizza
This Little Piggy Had Roast Beef served some killer sandwiches that tasted as fresh as you can get. A+ food! I look forward to visiting their eatery in the near future. 

Allen's sandwich from This Little Piggy Had Roast Beef

I had the Adult Cheese & Crackers from The Commodore and it was the best spread on a cracker I have had in years. It was way tasty.

Adult Cheese & Crackers from The Commodore

Hominy, and Sandwiches from The Commodore

Allen with his nifty Guy Fieri glass

Volunteers were going around with trays of food so I had more from Artichoke Pizza, This Little Piggy Had Roast Beef, and a Mini Beef Patty from Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill. Everything I tried was great. Special Note: An A++ goes to ALL the nice and courteous volunteers that made the event go smooth. All the volunteers were into what they were doing. This was one of the best events I have attended that had such awesome volunteers and all for a great cause, Food Bank For NYC and Share Our Strength.
-Allen/One of Two Fry's


Levain Bakery, so yum!

Pickles, Tacos from No. 7/No. 7 Sub/Weather Up

A volunteer, had to get a shot of the tee!

Go to part 2 for more Party In Guy's Garage: The Festival Closing Party...

-Sophia and Allen/Two Frys