Sunday, May 19, 2013

I love Slaw!!!!

Today I was inspired by my Yelp! Dukedom status of the local 99-cent only store! An achievement that I am not entirely sure that I am proud to wear the sash of... One way or the other it has inspired me to write a new blog post in the good old frugal fashion; furthermore all ingredients can be purchased from your local 99! 

How we love the American BBQ and cole-slaw, I also thought of my mothers coleslaw recipe. Being that she is lactose intolerant and allergic to soy here coleslaw is not the traditional sort but is wonderful for those that are looking for a low-fat/low calorie substitute. That and it's a cheap side dish that can be assembled from pantry items and cheap 99-cent store items. 

The term "coleslaw" arose in the eighteenth century as an Anglicization of the Dutch term "koolsla", a shortening of "koolsalade", which means "cabbage salad". Thank you Dutch for your delightful thought provoking vegetable that in your language sounds like Kool Aid. {Umm Pruplessaurus Rex where have you gone...} However in the United States coleslaw often also contains buttermilk or mayonnaise substitutes, and carrot (like the cole-slaw mix from the store for $0.99); although many regional variations exist, and recipes incorporating prepared mustard or vinegar without the dairy and mayonnaise are also common like the one we are doing today.

Coleslaw is generally eaten as a side dish with foods such as fried chicken and barbecued meats, and may be accompanied by fries or potato salad as another side dish. It is commonly included when ordering a fish fry in the Midwestern United States and with chicken in the south. Other uses include being placed on barbecue sandwiches, hamburgers, and hot dogs along with chili and hot mustard. My favorite is a creamy slaw with a BBQ Pulled Pork sandwich with tangy BBQ Sauce!
I love these ladies...
Coleslaw also is used on a variant of the Reuben sandwich, with coleslaw substituting for the sauerkraut, the meat being either pastrami or corned beef, and the sandwich commonly is called a "Rachel" to differentiate it from the "Reuben". Mimi's Cafe has an excellent "Ruben" with slaw; although it's one of the highest caloric content sandwiches on the menu... Just a side note. Think cabbage patch babies in a salad.

 BBQ slaw, also known as red slaw and commonly found in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, is made using ketchup and vinegar rather than mayonnaise which I am not entirely sure sounds appealing but there's a first time for everything I suppose.  A variety of seasonings, such as celery seed and poppy seeds, may be added. Typically cabbage comes in finely minced pieces, shredded strips, or small squares.

My Mamma's Cole Slaw Recipe 
Modified from Judy Einboden original recipe (origin unknown)
And that's how it's done!
3 - Tbsp. Sugar (or splenda substitute)
3 - Tbsp. Vinegar (White or Apple Cider)
2 - Tbsp. Canola Oil (Careful with Olive oil it's really strong!)
1- Tsp. Salt (A little goes a long way)
1- Tsp. Fresh Ground Pepper1-Bag Cabbage mix* or see below
1/2 Green Pepper diced
1/2 Red onion diced
1-Cucumber seeded and diced (I know why seed the motha... but it makes it easier to eat)
1-Tbsp Poppy Seeds or Celery Seeds

1. Mix all wet ingredients in the bottom of a bowl or tupperware with a lid with the sugar salt and pepper until the sugar dissolves completely.
2. Add the balance of the ingredients and toss to coat and mix everything together. 
3. Let sit for at least an hour so all the goodness can work it's magic behind closed doors.
4. Season to taste and enjoy!

Yes that's a photo of my cole-slaw just taken today

*Make your own cabbage mix if you're not a lazy ass:
1/2 Head Green Cabbage
1/2 Head Red Cabbage
Shred all with a food processor to make approx 2-Cups

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Satisfy The Carnal Desire for Breakfast

The need to satisfy the beast of a craving for breakfast on a Saturday morning after one of those long Friday nights, it's what we all need. But what to make when all that you want is to have that cup of coffee and just recover! Or even on that lazy Saturday morning when you don't want to do anything at all; but you must. carpe diem! Let's look at this alleged french toast...

The earliest official mention of French toast is in the Apicius, a collection of Latin recipes dating back to the 4th or 5th century. The Brothers Grimm mention it as Arme Ritter in the Deutsches Wörterbuch, quoting from the Buch von guter Spyse, which dates back to the 14th century. Another early mention is in the time of the reign of Henry V, when it was known as pain perdu in England. Pain perdu means "lost bread"; stale bread that might have otherwise been thrown away could be used for this dish.

The Oxford English Dictionary cites usages of "French toast" in a book called The Accomplisht Cook in 1660, which listed a recipe for French toast (toasted bread with wine, orange juice, and sugar). The Dictionary of American Food and Drink states the first egg-based recipe appeared in print in 1870. A similar dish, suppe dorate, was popular in England during the Middle Ages, although the English might have learned it from the Normans, who had a dish called tostees dorees.

In the US especially in the west and southwestern US it is prepared with sourdough. In the east coast especially in jewish-american households it is traditional to use leftover challa (jewish bread used for sabbath) the next morning to make french toast. In the UK it is known as eggy bread, or gypsy toast. At one point Cher had made this dish very poopular with Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves.

In France, Belgium, New Orleans, Acadiana, Newfoundland and the Congo, French toast is called pain perdu, which means "lost bread" in French. It is called "lost bread" because it is a way to reclaim stale or "lost" bread. The hard bread is softened by dipping in a mixture of milk and eggs, and then fried. The bread is sliced on a bias and dipped into a mixture of egg, milk, sugar, cinnamon and vanilla. The slices are pan-fried in butter and traditionally served dusted with powdered sugar and jam on the side. Alternatively, it may be served with syrup.

In New Orleans, pain perdu is a local variation of French toast. It is made from leftover New Orleans-style French bread. The bread resembles a French baguette, but has a crunchier exterior and a lighter interior. It is eaten for breakfast in New Orleans. NOTE: In France, pain perdu is considered to be a dessert and not a breakfast food item

Carnal Satisfaction French Toast Casserole
car·nal [kahr-nl] adjective
   1. pertaining to or characterized by the flesh or the body, itspassions and appetites; sensual: carnal pleasures.
Fuck the french, eat French Toast Casserole in the morning whatever day of the week you desire, fulfill the carnal desire for breakfast! On with the recipe! What a way to start a weekend I'll say. This recipe is a fan favorite! I just used it recently at a brunch where it was an absolute hit! I love it because you don't have to prep in the morning, just throw on the coffee and the oven...
  • 1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons) butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup packed brown Sugar
  • 1 loaf french bread/long baguette; sourdough or regulare (works best with day old or "stale" bread) 
  • 8 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Maple syrup and powdered sugar for topping
  1. Combine brown sugar and butter in a bowl and pour on the bottom of a baking dish. 
  2. Arrange the bread that is cut into slices/chunks in the baking dish.
  3. Combine milk, eggs, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger in a bowl and pour evenly over bread slices.
  4. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least four hours or preferably overnight.
  5. Before baking take out of the fridge for at least 10 minutes while you are preheating your oven to 350 degrees.
  6. Bake for 30-35 minutes. If top starts browning too quickly place a foil loosely over the top of the casserole for the last 10 minutes or so. You want it to cook long enough to make sure the bottom part is cooked but don't dry it out completely.
  7. Remove casserole from oven and let it cool slightly before serving. 
  8. Dust powdered sugar and a drizzle maple syrup. ENJOY!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tuesday's were made for Tacos, love and Spanish Red Rice {P.C. term}

There is always room for taco Tuesday's. When I was young it wasn't just on Tuesdays; my father went through a phase of tacos for a months on end; still to this day he loves my Mamma's tacos...

So here is my west coast famous Mexican Red Rice recipe; passed down from when I was a wee lad teaching at the Boy Scout camp  on Catalina hanging out with the Kitchen Staff, teaching young scouts the wonders of cooking and cooking my need for delicious delights from the kitchen or the campfire. Credit must be passed to Eric Duarte (Emerald Bay Kitchen Manager/Cook). This is not low-carb, not really healthy, but damn it’s fucking good and guaranteed to please a crowd even on meatloaf Mondays!

  • 1-Onion (Yellow or White) chopped
  • 2-Tbsp. Vegetable Oil/Lard (If you’re really feeling fatty!)
  • 1-Cup white long grain rice uncooked
  • 2-Cups prepared chicken  Broth (use the powder it’s more economical)
  • 1-8oz can Tomato sauce OR diced tomatoes
  • 2-Tsp Chili Powder
  • 1 ½ -Tsp. Cumin
  • 1 ½ -Tsp Dried Oregano
  • ½ Tsp. Salt
  • ½ Tsp. Pepper
  • 1/8 Tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 Tsp. Granulated Sugar

  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan that has a matching lid until just about smoking.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium high and cook onions until translucent.
  3. Add the rice and fold in until thoroughly coated and rice get’s a puffy look to it, do not burn!
  4. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine, bring to a boil over high heat.
  5. Cover with the lid and reduce heat to super-super-low. Like distant lantern seen from the shore on a foggy night low.
  6. Keep your grubby little hands off it until 30-minutes have passed. 

If you left your heat up too high you will easily burn it. If you open it up the rice will not cook completely; resist the urge to waft in the delicious smell.
Serve or store for future use. Frank especially likes to have this when it’s fresh with banana on top… To each his own!

My favorite Frugal Fag insider spot for taco Tuesday is at you're local Brandon's Diner. Who can beat 99-cent tacos? You can't beat it even with an ugly stick! Be mindful of the blue plate special crowd because it can get a bit loco! I round off the meal with a round of fries and large water. We had tree people with a hefty appetite which calculated to a total of 7-Tacos and fries; grand total of $12 + tip. Props to the staff they always get it just right!

Still to come is that Honey Mustard Dressing just got sidetracked by the thrill of TACO TUESDAY. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Low Carb Ketchup

I am in no way saying that I am the most healthy person in the world. I eat what I like and I like what I eat. I'm a foodie in all senses of the word really. But over the course of time I have been watching what really truly goes into the manufacturing process of foodstuffs that we eat. Some of the fillers and all the other shit that we eat is so nasty! Furthermore there is more sugar in ketchup than there is in Ice Cream; go figure.

Ketchup is one of my nearest and dearest friends, we would go to bed on a regular basis if we could! A little background on ketchup. In the 1690s the Chinese mixed together a concoction of pickled fish and spices and called it kôe-chiap or kê-chiap meaning the brine of pickled fish (carp juice) or shellfish {BLAGH!}

By the early 18th century, the table sauce had made it to present day Malaysia, where it was discovered by British explorers, and by 1740, it had become an English staple. The Malay word for the sauce was kĕchap. That word evolved into the English word "ketchup.

Many variations of ketchup were created, but the tomato-based version did not appear until about a century after other types. By 1801, a recipe for tomato ketchup was created by Sandy Addison and was later printed in an American cookbook, the Sugar House Book; which took 100 ripe tomatoes and had you squeeze by hand boil in a cauldron and bottle for a yield of 3-4 Years worth of drippy ketchup... {Too much work}

Modern ketchup emerged in the early years of the 20th century, out of a debate over the use of sodium benzoate as a preservative in condiments. Entrepreneurs including Henry J. Heinz, pursued an alternative recipe that eliminated the need for that preservative thus the evolving of modern day Ketchup. 

I was curious as to the difference between ketchup, catsup and fancy ketchup. Ketchup and Catsup are colloquial spellings only and are for the same thing, but a more scientific reason is behind the labeling of Fancy Ketchup.

Mc Donald’s {one of the best examples of good ketchup} has the label “Fancy Ketchup” This is a USDA grade, relating to specific gravity. Fancy ketchup has a higher tomato solid concentration than other USDA grades.
Specific Gravity
Total Solids
Extra Standard
If you’re a technical type you can read the whole thing here: "Textural Modification of Processing Tomatoes".

So to make the fancy Ketchup that I made the other day it does not require 100-Tomatoes, nor does it require Sodium Benzonate. I am sure the quality based upon USDA standards may say that this ketchup is simply Standard Ketchup. But in my mind this is pretty damn good stuff! Let's have a go...
    • ‎6 oz Tomato Paste (1-small can)
    • 2/3 C. Apple Cider Vinegar
    • 1/3 C Water
    • 1/3 C Splenda
    • 2 Tbsp Finely Minced Onion
    • 2 Cloves garlic (crushed)
    • 1Tsp salt
    • 1/8 tsp. ground allspice
    • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
    • 1/8 tsp pepper
    • 1/4 tsp guar or xanth gum*
      • *This is soley to make the ketchup gunk up like, well, ketchup and to extrude the water that collects if you don't use it right away. If you're not watching your carbs use some corn starch!
Put all ingredients in the blender and run until all the bits of onion have disappear. 
Refrigerate in airtight container

Yield: 1 1/2 C.
Each Tbsp = 2.25g carbs

Note: This comes from the fabulous cookbook: Dana Carpender's 500 Low Carb Recipes.

On a side note regarding this process, I first tried to do everything in the food processor, that didn't work out so well unless you have one of those gigatic Barefoot Contessa things use the blender. Furthermore it makes for a smoother prouct. I had looked online for other recpeies for ketchup and some said to heat the ketchup to combine the flavors; don't do that with this one. I think because you are using splenda when it is heated it makes the ketchup TOO SWEET! 

For storage I went to the 99-cent store and got Ketchup and mustard containers for a buck! Now that's the Frugal Fag way of life!

Check out the next blog post for the LOW CARB Tangy Honey Mustard Dressing.