Thursday, November 29, 2012

38 Power Foods, Week 23 -- Oats -- Porridged Eggs

I've never heard of porridged eggs, though my experience is that very little is truly new.  We've just lived too long.  For a few weeks, off and on, they kept coming to me.  I love the idea of oatmeal because I know my body, my heart, needs whole grains and oatmeal's tops.  (Read about the great oat here.)  But I also find that I operate better (and eat less) during the day with a protein for breakfast.  Especially in cold Minnesota.  Hence oats and eggs.  But how?

I grew up with the occasional bowl of take-no-prisoners buttered, salt and peppered grits with my eggs fried to a crispy lace in bacon grease.  Along with biscuits slathered with sour cream and honey.  And the very best fried fish in the world.   Lest you think things were always that wonderful, there was the occasional pot of squirrel gumbo, as well.  And often there was dove that required careful chewing lest you bite into buckshot.  While I seldom indulge these days, my displaced southerner living-in-Chicago parents provided me with a culinary heritage upon which I still draw.  (Phew.  That grammar's a killer.)


 Add that to my natural love of all things Scots (I'm a McClendon), and the oats and eggs just seemed right.  While I may try them in a few different ways upcoming, I think the single cook  might enjoy this simple repast that could be, with the addition of a piece of fruit and a glass of milk, a complete breakfast.   Of course I've made it for two, but haven't tried it in larger quantities. To get your mind around eggs with oats, take away the thoughts of oatmeal with brown sugar, raisins, apples, bananas, whatever.  Take away the idea of sweet.  Replace it with a meal more on the order of eggs and grits, with wholesome and tastier oats to replace the grits.  A tiny bit of butter graces the finished dish, and a generous dusting of salt and pepper completes it.  Not only that, but here the egg cooks right in the pan of oats for ease of clean-up.  Here's how:

Porridged Eggs  serves 1

1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal (not instant)
1 cup water
1 egg
1 t butter
Salt and pepper to taste

 In a small sauce pan, heat the water and the oats over high heat until boiling.  Turn  heat down and simmer for two minutes or so.  Carefully break egg into the center of the oats.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Cover tightly.  Let cook another 3 minutes or until the eggs and oatmeal are done to your liking.  Spoon carefully into a deep cereal bowl and add the butter to the top of the eggs.  Salt and pepper to taste.  (originally posted on, 12-15-2011)

 I blog with a great group of writers every Friday where we cook our way through the list of foods from Whole Living Magazine's Power Foods:  150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients:    Read more about tasty oats tomorrow at these sites:

Ansh –  
Minnie Gupta from
Sarah - Everything in the Kitchen Sink


                                                                            this week on dinnerplace:
 wine and lemon-steamed salmon on broccoli

 During the calorically dense holiday season, it makes sense to have a great, quick fish meal in your pocket....This one's a winner.   Saute onions, garlic, and broccoli.  Add wine, lemon juice and salmon filets.  Cover and cook just a few minutes.  Dinner's served!

Sing a new song! Cook something new!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Helen's Cherry Pie- Constructed, Deconstructed and Reconstructed -- Pie 101

"Can she bake a cherry pie, Billy Boy, Billy Boy?  Can she bake a cherry pie, charming Billy?"
She's a young thing and cannot leave her mother....  is poor Billy's lament.  She can, however, bake a cherry pie quick as a cat can blink an eye!  (Click on above link to hear the song; guitar chords included.)

 I was just minding my own business.  I had stuck the hot cherry pie on a rack on an empty shelf in a kitchen cupboard.  A good place to cool pie if you have two golden retrievers. (I made four different pies for Thanksgiving; everyone deserves their favorite once a year.  I'm convinced.  Cherry is my sister Helen's favorite.   Hence "Helen's Cherry Pie."  Also my loved "niece," Kathy's.)

Tucker up front in the kitchen, Gabby retreating into the dining room.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Turkey Noodle Soup--Carcass and All

Make this soup on Friday and curl up on the couch to watch the first Christmas Movies!
If you kept or froze your turkey carcass from Thanksgiving and aren't quite sure what to do with it, this is your method for soup. While it looks like a recipe, it's merely a method and you must yourself judge which ingredients you have or want to add; it's all about flexible. Note the options of using your leftover vegetables, gravy, stock, or just adding all purchased low-sodium chicken stock and so on. In about an hour an a half, you'll have just about the best turkey noodle soup you ever ate. If you are skipping noodles this week, leave them out and, instead, add extra fresh or frozen vegetables. (Brown rice, wild rice, or barley are other possibilities.)
Turkey Noodle Soup from Thanksgiving Leftovers...Including that gravy if you like.
This soup is made in two stages: one to create a quick stock and the other to make the soup.
Please read all the way through before beginning.  

Cook's Note:  The Turkey Soup police are not out today.  You can make this with lots of changes and substitutions, but you have my idea to start.  Blessings on your soup pot!  Be brave!

Friday, November 16, 2012

A Cranberry Thanksgiving Day or How To Get the Kids Involved in Thanksgiving!

"Get Mother to help."
 As my family well knows, there comes a day in November (December is just too late) when I do nothing but bake cranberry bread.  We have it for Thanksgiving morning breakfast, take a loaf or two to friends, and then have one squirreled away in the freezer for Christmas morning as well.   I make a fun production out of the day (no other activities, favorite music on, microwaved lunch) and have nearly an assembly line in the kitchen so that loaf after loaf is mixed individually and baked on the center rack.  It does require a number of pans, but I'm good at finding extras at Good Will or splurging on a great pan with a Williams-Sonoma gift card.  I also bake this bread in coffee cups
for large size muffins or in tiny pans as little gifts for special folks.

Apilco (French porcelain)--all their tableware is oven-safe.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Thanksgiving, 2012

                     "It's not what's on the table that's important.  It's who's in the chairs."

This post includes:
  • Guide to cooking and baking hotlines
  • Links to great Thanksgiving sites for tips, food, decoration, kids' activities
  • My own favorite Thanksgiving photos, recipes, music, wine, and even a blessing or two  ... 


  I can't preach about giving thanks.  I'll just say I think it's healthy.  It's lovely in that it's a discipline folks of any religion or country can take part.  But of course, our fair "Rabbie" had it best:

Some Hae Meat
 Some hae meat and canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it,
But we hae meat and we can eat,
And sae the Lord be thankit.

~Robert Burns

 Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  You could have guessed.
My worlds all come together on that day.
Giving thanks-- being grateful--is a practice or discipline of many religions and cultures, including mine.
I need it.  I need that discipline. And:
Creating a meal to honor my idea of a great day!
I wish you a day of totally beautiful, grateful life.

A grace could be very simply giving thanks for the hands that made the meal, for the workers in the stores, on the trucks, in the gardens and  the vineyards Even a toast to all who made it possible would work.  Mark the moment.

Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action.  
                                                    ~W.J. Cameron
Awareness.   Awakeness. Appreciation.  Peaceful breath.
A table that includes something you love.
Someone you love.

Some of the best new scripture these days is found on paper napkins.
I have some that say, "It's not what's on the table that's important.  It's who's in the chairs."
Ah, that we have to print that somewhere.

Deep breaths and a sense of warm wonder to you as you prepare to give thanks this year.

          If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice. 

                                                                                                              ~Meister Eckhart
Before the fun begins,  thanks for reading and responding:

           Bloggers Without Borders Post on Helping Victims of Sandy 


Friday, November 9, 2012

38 Power Foods, Week 22 -- Brown Rice -- Chili and Brown Rice with Spinach Salad

BTW, those are still cherry tomatoes from our garden on November 8.

While chili is a quintessential American fall meal, it is often eaten as is.  Just a bowl.  Just a spoon.  Just you and your chili.  

Fall in our 'hood--tiny, dried crabapples against a St. Paul blue sky.

The chili mostly stands alone, I guess.

Or at least just with chips, cheese, onions, sour cream....or on hot dogs or fries.  Ha.

(Election Day Turkey-Lentil Crock-pot Chili--my last post--is one of Michelle Obama's favorite meals... well--Turkey Chili is, at any rate.)

Monday, November 5, 2012

Election Day Turkey-Lentil Crock-Pot Chili

If you're like me, you'll be all over MSNBC Tuesday night like icing on wedding cake.  Like blue on jeans.  Like red on Merlot.  Like chocolate on chips. Oh well, whatever you're on, you might want something done and done to get you through that long night.  Just, please, God...let be over and clean and obvious.  No hanging anythings and the Ohio machines all working fine.

I already made my chili and froze it. I just run that 4 quart container under hot water in the morning til it "pops" and then gently slide the frozen chunk into my crock-pot on "low" for the whole day. (Make sure and add a little water to the crock-pot before the frozen chili.)   But since you didn't know ahead of time....  Try this spicy, filling crock-pot chili that only asks you to....