Welcome to Chuck's Kitchen - now addressed as Recipes Dot Nitecruzr Dot Net. Note the Food Category index, in the sidebar.

New Spices

After some urging by friends, I tossed some of my older spices. This week, I ordered some new ones, to replace a few that I ran out of recently - and to try some different ones.

Sent by Mark & Reese at Season With Spice, using USPS Express Mail. 3 days after placing the order, I was taking the picture.

Now, to find some new recipes. I am familiar with coriander and mustard. And I have a few curry recipes. Garam Masala I am just learning - and the other two will be completely new.

So, Google is your friend, we'll see what happens.

Sesame Mint Rice, Basmati Style

The difference is in how you cook it. This is plain old white rice, see how more interesting it looks?

An online friend gave me a link to a video from a Bangladeshi cooking show (below), where they demonstrate how to cook Basmati rice.

Well I speak not a word of Bengali, nor do I have any Basmati rice - but the technique used, in cooking the rice, interested me. Rice is hard, so why does frying it make a difference?

I don't know - but it does.
  • 2 C rice
  • 5 C water (4 C for the rice, 1 C for the vegs)
  • 2 t bouillon
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 t curry powder
  • 1 t ginger
  • 1 T mint
  • 1 T sesame seed
  • 1/4 t tumeric
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, diced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped

  1. Hear up a dutch oven, add cooking oil to cover the bottom.
  2. Saute garlic, 15 - 30 seconds, stirring constantly, just until it gives off an aroma.
  3. Add jalapeno, saute 10 - 15 seconds, stirring constantly.
  4. Add onion, saute until it starts to become transparent, stirring constantly.
  5. Remove veg mixture, save in bowl.
  6. Add more oil, to again cover the bottom of the pot, and add rice.
  7. Saute rice, 2 - 3 minutes, stirring frequently, until the rice stirs like dry sand. The rice will have an aroma, too.
  8. Add sesame seed, stir 30 - 60 seconds, until sesame seed starts to brown.
  9. Add herbs and spices. Make a hole in the rice, to expose the bottom of the pot - and pour the herbs and spices onto the bottom, so it heats up.
    • ginger
    • curry
    • tumeric
    • mint
    • cayenne
    • bouillon
    Then stir just enough to mix well with the rice.
  10. Add vegetables back, stir.
  11. Add water, bring to boil, stirring occasionally.
  12. Reduce to simmer, cover, cook until visible water is gone, stirring occasionally.
  13. When visible water is gone, and you cannot hear boiling, stir once more, turn stove off, stir again, cover, and let it sit.
  14. Test occasionally. When rice is soft, you're done.
  15. Garnish / mix with chopped cucumber / tomato.
You get flaky, soft rice, with a nutty flavour, and a hint of ginger and mint. And the fresh onion keeps it soft. It's not Basmati rice - that's a registered trademark - but it's not sticky like my previous Sesame Mint Rice.

In truth, the only things common between my recipe and the one in the video is "rice", onion, and probably tumeric. It was still educational, learning that dry rice can be fried.


Sesame Mint Rice

Encouraged by my recent success with using mint as a spice, I decided to continue.

Jalapeno slices added, as a garnish. What can you do, to photo rice, after all?

  • 2 C rice
  • 4 1/2 C water (4 C for the rice, 1/2 C for the onion flakes)
  • 2 t bouillon
  • 1/2 t curry powder
  • 1/2 t ginger
  • 1 T mint
  • 1 T sesame seed
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 T onion flakes

  1. Start with rice, in water.
  2. Bring water to boil, stir frequently.
  3. Add bouillon, spices, garlic, onion.
  4. Reduce to simmer, cover.
  5. Stir occasionally.
  6. When all of the water is absorbed by the rice, and the rice barely sticks to the spoon, stir once more, cover, and turn heat off.
  7. Let rice finish cooking, and cool.
  8. Serve topped with a bit of salsa (Herdez is my fave), sourdough bread, and lemonade.

A variant of this dish is prepared Basmati style.

Curry Potatoes

I love the smell of garlic in the evening - it smells like - - - dinner.

Eat first, take pictures after. And this is what was left.

  • 6 medium / 12 small potatoes, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 T sliced jalapenos
  • 1 T nopalitos
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can red beans
  • 2 T bouillon powder / 2 cubes bouillon
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 t coriander powder
  • 1/2 t cumin powder
  • 1 T curry powder
  • 1/2 t garam masala

  1. Chop potatoes, slice garlic.
  2. Heat up dutch oven, until water sizzles on bottom.
  3. Cover bottom with oil.
  4. Saute garlic 15 seconds or so, just long enough until the room fills with the aroma.
  5. Add potatoes, stir like crazy 1 - 2 minutes until potatoes brown just slightly.
  6. Add beans and tomatoes, mix. With the right amount of potatoes, the top layer should be 1/2 floating in juice.
  7. Add nopalitos and jalapenos, and a bit of juice from each jar.
  8. Add spices, and mix well.
  9. Bring to boil, reduce to slow simmer.
  10. Stir frequently.
  11. When potatoes just stick to the spoon, cover pan, turn off heat, let it finish and cool down to not burn your mouth.
  12. Serve with sourdough bread, or steamed tortillas - and dark Mexican beer.

Winter Stew

My least favourite season of the year - so maybe I will "celebrate" with a new recipe (OK, I am posting it 2 days late!).

In this case, I had run out of ginger - but mint and rosemary made an interesting substitute.
  • 2 T / 2 cubes bouillon
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • 3 or 4 good sized carrots, chopped
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 can peas
  • 1 can tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 pound tube steaks
  • 1/4 t black pepper
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1 T chili powder
  • 1/2 t cumin
  • 1 T dried mint, crumbled
  • 1/2 t rosemary, crumbled
  • 4 C water
  • 2 C white rice

  1. Dice, chop, mince, slice fresh vegetables, set aside.
  2. Slice tube steaks, into 1/4" medallions.
  3. Heat up large dutch oven, add 1 T or so cooking oil, saute garlic 30 seconds or so (I Love the aroma of garlic, frying).
  4. Add onions, jalapeno pepper, saute until onion is transparent.
  5. Add bouillon, carrots, corn, peas, tomatoes, spices, tube steak medallions, water, mix well. Cook until largest chunks of carrots are chewy.
  6. Add rice, mix well. Cook until rice is soft. Stir rice frequently, add water if necessary.

Serve with warm (steamed) tortillas, and dark Mexican beer - Negra Modelo would be my fave here.

Thanksgiving 2014

My neighbours and I are all tired of Thanksgiving Turkey. We sort of got the idea (blame it on the Jack) of having what you come up with.

The rules are simple.
  1. Half must be "leftovers", or "whatever is in the cabinet / refrigerator".
  2. No going to the store.
  3. No burning each other out.
  4. 3/4 of the audience (people who did not cook it) have to be able to eat it.
So, we'll see what we get. We all love spicy stuff.
  • 3 clove garlic
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1/2 pound tube steak, sliced 1/4" thick medallions
  • 1 can beans (2 would have been better)
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 1 C leftover canned corn, in juice
  • 2 T sliced jalapenos
  • 1/4 C nopalitos
  • 2 T bouillon powder (or 2 cubes)
  • 1/4 t cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 t cumin
  • 1/2 t curry powder
  • 1 T ginger
  • 1/2 t mustard
  • 1 T sesame seeds
  • 1/4 t tumeric
  • 2 C rice
  • 3 C water (4 C total, for 2 C rice)
And cook.
  1. Saute the garlic and onion (I love the smell of sauteing garlic).
  2. Add everything else but rice and water, bring to boil, reduce to simmer, cook 1/2 hour or so.
  3. Add rice, and water, being to boil, reduce to simmer, cook until rice is tender.
  4. Drink more Jack.
  5. 3 of us added just a tiny bit of Tabasco - and we all ate it.
  6. See what else we got - but my neighbours don't publish recipe blogs. 8-(

Ginger Sesame Green Beans

Quick, easy to make, came right out of the cupboard when I couldn't find anything else.
  • 1 can cooked green beans
  • 1/2 t chicken bouillon
  • 1 p cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 t dried, chopped garlic
  • 1 t ginger
  • 1 t dried, chopped onion
  • 1 t sesame seed
  • 1 s soy sauce
  • 1 d sugar
  • 1 p tumeric
  • 1 d vinegar
  • 2 C dried pasta, cooked, drained, and cooled
  1. Combine everything but the beans in a bowl.
  2. Drain the beans into the bowl, and mix the bean juice and everything else, well.
  3. Add the beans to the bowl, mix again.
  4. Cover mixture, put in refrigerator to marinate.
  5. Allow an hour or two for the liquid to soak into the veggies (dried, chopped garlic and onion has to reconstitute).
  6. When ready, toss the marinade with pasta.
  7. Add green beans, toss again.
  8. Serve.
  9. Substitute cooked rice for pasta, if you wish.
  10. In cold weather, the beans could be warmed in a wok.