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October 16, 2013

Creamed rice and greens
Posted by Teresa at 07:33 AM * 89 comments

2 C. white rice
4 cans Campbell’s concentrated chicken broth
1/2 bag each frozen collard greens and kale
1 C. - 1-1/2 C. half-and-half or cream
salt, pepper

Empty all four cans of chicken broth into a large non-stick pot. Fill each empty can half-full of water and pour that in the pot too. (A lot of the flavor is in the trace amounts of chicken fat, which has a tendency to stick to the can. This helps get the last bits out.) Bring to a boil. Add rice. Turn down the heat and cook until the rice is done and all the chicken stock has been taken up. Add more water if needed.

Meanwhile, defrost the greens and gently simmer them with the cream for five minutes or more. You can do this via microwave or in a saucepan on the stove. Add this mixture to the rice just before it dries off. Add black pepper, and salt if you really think it needs it.

Optional additions: cooked mushrooms; bits of cooked bacon or pancetta; some quantity of precooked wild rice; bits of blanched chopped pecan; more greens than the main recipe calls for. Add optional ingredients at the last minute, except for extra greens which get added to the main batch. Optional substitutions: vegetarian broth for chicken broth; brown rice for white. Caution: if you substitute fresh greens and are using half-and-half, precook and drain the greens first.

American cooking would classify this as a side dish with chicken or turkey, but it’s good all by itself, and filling enough to use as a main dish or serve in place of funeral potatoes.


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Comments on Creamed rice and greens:
#1 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 01:48 PM:

@TNH: What size are the bags of greens?

Any idea what the equivalent amount of fresh greens would be? (The "downscale" market down the street has an incredible variety of produce and great prices. Next time you're in Oregon, check out a WinCo . . .)

I wonder if this would freeze up well. I make dishes like this and freeze them in entree-sized batches.

#2 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 03:13 PM:

I am totally a fan of cooking rice in stock -- chicken, vegetable, whatever -- because I find the rice just tastes so much better when it's absorbed the flavors of what I cook it with.

Similarly -- if you like a spice/herb and think it would enhance a steamed veggie -- add it to the steaming water. Rosemary and thyme are really good for this (and they're both very easy to grow in a garden -- they're really weed-like in their tenacity).

#3 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 04:51 PM:

What is half-and-half, please?

#4 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 04:55 PM:

Half-and-half is:
Half whole milk and half (light) cream.

I've successfully done recipes like this from only whole milk all the way up to straight heavy cream, so any percentage of butterfat works.

More is tastier.

#5 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 04:57 PM:

Use your hands to squeeze as much liquid as possible from the greens before you dump them in the cream.

If using raw, lightly steam to wilt (or stir in a pan, almost dry) and then squeeze out any water.

#6 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 05:31 PM:

@3 Mongoose

What is half-and-half, please?

It's an American thing; you might call it half-cream or coffee cream. It runs at about 10 or 12 % milkfat.

#7 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 05:49 PM:

Risotto!

#8 ::: Fred ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 05:56 PM:

This post makes me think of that chicken soup after the night with Elise at Quarter.

#9 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 06:03 PM:

Carol and Cheryl: thanks! So over here you might use whipping cream, perhaps.

#10 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 06:22 PM:

So that's what y'all eat instead of Grits'n'Greens.

#11 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 06:42 PM:

@9 Mongoose

Carol and Cheryl: thanks! So over here you might use whipping cream, perhaps.

Well, around here, whipping cream runs at 35% or higher, so that wouldn't work. Maybe what you are calling whipping cream is not what I call whipping cream?

I find it easiest to check the percentages; that way, no matter what name something might have, I know I've got the closest match.

#12 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 06:47 PM:

A few months back I brought a smoked salmon to work, for Bagel Friday. The fillet came in a foil/plastic pouch. I saved the juice inside, and used it, with just a little water, to cook some rice that evening.

Un-freaking-believable.

#13 ::: Jenny Islander ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 07:06 PM:

Mozzarella Cheese Casserole

This sounds like it should be bland, but it totally isn't.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, grate 1 pound mozzarella cheese and cut 3 large sweet or yellow onions into slivers. Heat some olive oil, bacon drippings, or butter in a skillet on Medium. Put the onions into the skillet and leave to get soft, stirring occasionally.

3. Your pasta water is probably boiling by now. Cook 1 pound stubby pasta shapes, such as rigatoni, penne, or conchiglietti, just until al dente. If possible, substitute 4 oz. whole grain pasta for 4 oz. of the regular pasta. Use a variety of types if you like.

4. When the onions are soft, sprinkle with 2 teaspoons each granulated sugar and salt, stir, put the lid on, and leave until golden, about 20 minutes.

5. Drain the pasta, rinse, and dump into a large bowl or back into the cooled pasta pot. Butter a 9 x 13 casserole.

6. When the onions are golden, pour the entire skillet into the bowl of pasta and stir. You can add some dried marjoram at this point if you like.

7. Pour the pasta and onion mixture into the prepared casserole, even it out with a wooden spoon, and sprinkle all of the mozzarella on the top. Don't worry, it will melt down through all of the pasta.

8. Sprinkle generously with grated Parmesan from a shaker and bake until well browned and bubbly.

9. Serve hot. Makes good leftovers.

#14 ::: Darice Moore ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 07:28 PM:

Y'all put cream in your collards? (Admittedly, as a fan of both cream and collard greens, I should try this one.) I know people do creamed spinach, for example, but I've never tried it.

Collards: Generally, I melt a bit of bacon fat saved from the last fry-up in my big stock pot, then mess the greens around in it until they're wilted. Then I throw in a cup or two of water, put the top on, and let the whole thing go until it's a green mess, but I LIKE that green mess. Plus the pot likker (which has the majority of the vitamins anyway). Leftover collards and pot likker = soup base or soup enhancement.

#15 ::: eep ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 07:35 PM:

Tom Whitmore @2, Stefan Jones @12
I love using stock and saved juices for rice.

Any time I need to drain a can of something (tomatoes or corn, most often), I do so into pint containers that I keep in the freezer. Then, when I want to cook rice, I pull out a full one, and don't need to measure it.

This goes for things like the water from cooking pumpkin in, too.

#16 ::: etv13 ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 08:23 PM:

Funeral potatoes?

#19 ::: Avram ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 08:31 PM:

(Dammit.)

#20 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 09:25 PM:

If you don't eat meat, an alternative for collards to the "cook with bacon or a ham hock" is to braise them with maple syrup - cut them up, put them in a pan with a little flavorful oil of your choice (olive or peanut would be nice), add a little water (just enough that they're not dry) and some maple syrup, cook until they're as soft as you want. I had something like this with fried chicken at one of my favorite restaurants here and while the chicken was very good it was the collards I was raving about.

Sorry for the lack of proportions; my cooking tends toward the "what looks and tastes right" school for everything other than baking.

#21 ::: Diatryma ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 09:39 PM:

Where does one find condensed chicken broth these days? I loved to cook rice in it, but I haven't been able to find the properly concentrated stuff in more than a year.

#22 ::: philsuth ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 10:22 PM:

Maurice Sendak would approve.

...I told you once, I told you twice
All seasons of the year are nice
For eating chicken soup with rice.


#23 ::: philsuth has been gnomed ::: (view all by) ::: October 16, 2013, 10:41 PM:

Ellipsis induced indigestion? Perhaps the gnomes deserve a soothing bowl of chicken soup with rice.

[The filters didn't like your email address. I've adjusted them.—Idumea Arbacoochee, Duty Gnome]

#24 ::: thomas ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2013, 01:10 AM:

Diatryma #21

My supermarket sells stock concentrated into jelly form, in six-packs of little one-tbs blobs that dilute to a cup of stock. One could dilute less.

It's quite nice stock, but it is a bit salty.

#25 ::: Victoria ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2013, 11:26 AM:

Right now, the frost is killing off tomato vines and leaving lots of under ripe produce in some people's gardens. The obvious solution is fried green tomatoes. (which I made thanks to an anonymous co-worker who left a box full of them in the break room)

Then another co-worker turned me on to Green Tomato Soup. It is wonderful. I googled recipes, and being a pinch cook, used them as a guide line. So I don't have actual amounts for what I did. I did it by taste. Some recipes call for ham, others call for bacon. Last night's experiment was with bacon. Here's the process

1) .5 to 1 lb of bacon chopped and browned in a heavy sauce pot or dutch oven.

2) dice 1/4 of a medium sized onion (about .5 cup) or more depending on how well you like onions. Add to pot when the bacon has rendered out enough fat to saute the onions

3) add 1-2 bay leaves

4) medium-small dice 1/4 of the tomatoes (roughly 1-2 cups) and add to the pot after the onions are translucent. Puree the rest of the tomatoes (3-6 cups) in a food processor and add to the pot. Stir thoroughly and let the tomatoes saute a bit to soften.

5) Add water (2-4 cups) and 1-2 chicken flavored bullion cubes (no chicken stock on hand) Stir. Consistency should be thinner than traditional canned tomato soup and thicker than normal broth-based soup.

Bring to a boil and let simmer for about 30 minutes.

I'm going to visit family this weekend. I'm hitting up my siblings for green tomatoes so I can try the ham version next.

#26 ::: PJ Evans ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2013, 12:18 PM:

26
You can make pie with them also.

#27 ::: adelheid_p ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2013, 12:58 PM:

I just made this because I had leftover vegetarian Imagine brand, low sodium, "No Chicken" broth (seriously what the container said) to use up and I used medium grain brown rice, a bag of 365 kale (Whole Foods brand?) that was in my freezer waiting for a purpose and So brand coconut creamer (no fat). I only had 2 cups of the broth so I only made about half the rice in the recipe and used whole bag of kale and 1 cup of coconut creamer. The medium grain rice added some creaminess on its own. I like the proportion of rice to greens. I did end up adding some kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper.

#28 ::: Angiportus ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2013, 08:34 PM:

It so happens that I had a package of rice noodles with lemongrass flavoring that someone had given me. I also had some leftover turkey soup. Combined, these were unbelievably scrumptious.

#29 ::: HenryR ::: (view all by) ::: October 17, 2013, 11:53 PM:

It's the right time of year for this. I make it every 2-3 weeks from Labor Day until Thanksgiving.

Butternut Squash Soup

1 Butternut squash. About this big. (I'm holding my hands this far apart.) Half inch dice.

.25 - 1.0 lb Sweet Italian sausage. Best to use bulk sausage meat or patties. If you can only get links, cut/peel off the skin and squash them into oblong patties about 1/4 inch thick before browning.

1-2 cans white beans - canellini, great northern, or navy (2 cans if less than .5 lb sausage, 1 if more than .5 lbs.)

1 cup chopped onion.

1-2 red peppers. Small dice. (Or a medium jar of roasted red peppers diced small.)

1 quart chicken broth

1 tsp dried sage. Crumble with fingers when you add it.

1-2 bay leaves

1 tsp black pepper (or to taste)

1 Parmesan rind, if you have one. (If you eat good parmesan, you do save the rind in the freezer for a future soup, don't you?)

Brown the sausage in a fry pan. Good and brown. Pretend it's bacon and try to get it close to crispy. (Maillard reaction = more flavor in the soup.) Cool and cut into real small dice. If you buy a pound and only intend to use part of it, the rest freezes nicely for future soup or pizza toppings.

While sausage is browning cut up the rest of the veg.

Use a tablespoon of sausage fat in the soup pot to cook the onions until translucent, then add broth, herbs/spices, sausage, beans, parmesan rind. Simmer this at least 30 minutes, and up to 2 hours. If the parmesan disintegrates completely, that's fine. Otherwise fish it out when you fish out the bay leaves.

Add peppers and butternut squash, bring back up to simmer and cook until squash is tender. About 15 more min. Fish out cheese and bay leaves.

Serve with garlic bread, or just crackers. (Make the crackers more interesting by giving everyone a peeled garlic clove with the tip cut off. Rub clove on cracker then dip in soup. Mmmmmmmmmmm.)

Variations:

Vegan - No sausage & no parmesan (obviously), vegetable broth, both cans of beans, and add 1/4 tsp of ground anise seed.

Using up veg before they go bad - you can grate a carrot or two, or add a couple of sticks of sliced celery. Either or both just add depth to the flavor.

If you can't find sweet italian sausage, breakfast sausage works just as well. Omit the sage, and add 1/4 tsp anise seed (or more).

#30 ::: janetl ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 12:38 AM:

Question*: What happened to bouillon cubes? There used to be beef and chicken cubes sold in every grocery store. Now there are "granules" and such instead. Is the taste better, or is this just a marketing move to look fancier?


*All this talk of stock stirred up this question I've pondered while hunting for stock & bouillon in the grocery store.

#31 ::: David Goldfarb ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 12:40 AM:

HenryR: That sounds really good. I'll have to try it.

#32 ::: SummerStorms ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 01:02 AM:

I still see bouillon cubes in the grocery stores here in northeast Ohio. I don't buy them much as they're hella salty, but they're easy enough to find.

#33 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 04:44 AM:

It's easy to find bouillon cubes in the UK. There's a well-known brand called Oxo which sells very well and comes in several varieties, including a vegetarian one, which I used to use regularly. (I've since changed brand; I found something I liked better.)

Which reminds me that I was once enormously amused in a supermarket. I'd gone in there looking for veggie Oxo, but there was none. There was, however, a sign on the shelf where it ought to be, reading "Temporarily out of stock".

I laughed.

#34 ::: Diatryma ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 08:32 AM:

I used to unwrap a bouillon cube and lick it until my tongue had been eaten away a bit. Delicious to a kid.

I'll have to keep hunting for the Campbell's concentrated chicken broth.

#35 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 09:55 AM:

Diatryma @ 35: I still eat the little bits of cube that remain stuck to the wrapper. Still delicious. Mind you, I have low blood pressure, so I need the salt.

#36 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 10:15 AM:

JanetL @31, I do still frequently see bouillon cubes, and I remember seeing the granules when I was a kid, so if there's been a change I think it's local to you. The packaging of the cubes has changed - I used to see the cubes individually wrapped inside a clear jar, and now they're in small rectangular packages instead, so maybe you're just not noticing them because you're looking for something you aren't seeing?

#37 ::: Lucy Kemnitzer ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 12:13 PM:

This is reminding me that my mother used to cook broccoli and cauliflower in bouillon, something I don't do because I got trained out of using any added salt whatever when we thought my blood pressure situation might be sodium-dependent (it wasn't but I lost the taste for salty food, mostly, though I demolished a loaf of olive bread yesterday all bay my lonesome).

#38 ::: clew ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 02:29 PM:

lorax @20, nice.

The swankity Ferry Plaza farmers' market has smoked sweet onions, which are great substitutions in a lot of meat-tinted recipes. I think of them as vegetarian bacon bits. I need to look up how to smoke small quantities of veg and try making them myself.

#39 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 03:22 PM:

We've got a very good paste available here (Seattle) in various flavors, called "Better than Boullion." Vegetarian "chick'n", mushroom, beef. lobster, organic chicken, and others -- somewhat salty, but one does use a relatively small amount to make up the stock. First item on the ingredients list for the mushroom version is mushrooms -- salt is second. 680 mg of sodium in a serving -- that may help you figure out if it's too salty.

#40 ::: Ursula L ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 03:34 PM:

Around here, there are bouillon cubes (Herb Ox and Knorr brands) and also various powders and pastes. I haven't tried "Better than Bouillon." I do like the "Lisa Marie Premium Soup Base with Chicken Fat" - it has a very good flavor for a powder/cube product, and isn't as salty as some brands of powder or cubes.

#41 ::: Victoria ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 03:50 PM:

Janetl@31

I see both bullion granules and cubes where I'm at along with a "stock paste" that is less salty where I live. I think it's a marketing thing for people who don't want to have to mess with crushing up a cube. (A sister uses crushed bullion cubes to season stir fried cabbage.)

I prefer using "stock paste"/base, but I wasn't cooking in my own kitchen when I made the soup.

#42 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 04:31 PM:

clew @39, smoked onions sound amazing! Chipotles or other smoked peppers are my usual go-to for vegetarian smokiness, but there are some dishes where onions would work better. I've found that especially for dishes like greens or legumes, adding a little tasty oil helps with the mouthfeel and to make it feel less like you're eating something "aggressively healthy".

#43 ::: Paul Duncanson ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 06:40 PM:

I don't think granulated stock/bouillon is a marketing thing. Cooking with cubes, it's fiddly to scale a recipe to proportions that use fractional cubes (not to mention wasteful with all the individual wrappings and left-over cube bits) but powder or granules are relatively easy to scale if you have a decent set of measuring spoons. The powdered stuff I use mixes with water at 1 tsp to 250ml to make full-strength liquid stock and it's no problem for me to go down to 1/4 cup of stock without waste or mess. It's exactly the same product as the cubes, it's just not compressed into pre-measured chunks.

#44 ::: Rob Rusick ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 07:03 PM:

Mongoose @34: I'd gone in there looking for veggie Oxo, but there was none. There was, however, a sign on the shelf where it ought to be, reading "Temporarily out of stock".

Nothing to add; just wanted to repeat it.

#45 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 09:17 PM:

Mongoose #34: Oxo is very versatile. I remember, when I was a lad, a salesman in Brixton market, insisting that some fabric he was vending was remarkably easy to clean: "You just wash it in some Oxo." I suspect he meant Omo, but I can't be sure.

#46 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 09:38 PM:

The current #22 is not the one I was complaining about. Philsuth, I agree that Maurice Sendak is good all year 'round. Eat it once, eat it twice, eat your chicken soup with rice.

#47 ::: Tracie ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 11:05 PM:

Greens and/or beans are pretty good cooked in ham bouillon. Better than Bouillon and Knorr, among others, make it. When I can't find it in the regular bouillon section, I often find it on the Mexican foods section.

#48 ::: J. ::: (view all by) ::: October 18, 2013, 11:47 PM:

Low-carb low-spoons meals: If you can put a saucepan of water on to boil, hard-cook 1 or 2 eggs and eat them warm. A warm hard-cooked egg is very comforting, I find. Also you can pre-season it by salting the cooking water.

Wild salmon "homestyle," with the bones and the skin, eaten straight from the can. The skin is as inoffensive (YMMV) as the skin of a sardine and the bones turn into chewable little savory bits. Save the can broth and use when making soup. Or just drink it!

#49 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2013, 05:37 AM:

Fragano @ 46: that made me laugh. I now have a mental image of someone walking around in clothes washed in Oxo, and being followed by every dog and cat in the vicinity.

I live on chickpea and vegetable casserole at the moment. It's cheap and delicious, and I make it up in bulk, so I've only got to assemble the requisite spoons to make it every nine or ten days. The rest of the time, I just take a helping out and nuke it.

#50 ::: Bruce H. ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2013, 02:17 PM:

My default low spoons meal is a packet of ramen with an egg stirred in at the end of cooking. If I'm feeling slightly more ambitious, I chop a clove of garlic and add it before the noodles.

#51 ::: PJ Evans ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2013, 02:26 PM:

I check the market today, and Campbell's chicken broth is in the soup section, as part of 'classic/old favorites'.

#52 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2013, 07:54 PM:

Imagine's No-Chicken Broth is amazing stuff. From the ingredients, it's just mirepoix (onions, carrots, celery) and safflower oil (and maybe garlic?) but somehow it does the job of standing in for chicken broth in a way that I can't get sauteed and simmered mirepoix to do on its own.

I try to keep homemade veggie stock on hand in the freezer, since it's purely foolish to let onion skins, carrot peelings, and celery trimmings go to waste, and I create plenty of all those in the course of cooking, but there are times when No-Chicken Broth makes a difference.

#53 ::: Allan Beatty ::: (view all by) ::: October 19, 2013, 08:50 PM:

Here is my default no-spoons recipe:

  1. Microwave some frozen vegetables according to the directions on the package.

Season to taste.

#54 ::: SamChevre ::: (view all by) ::: October 21, 2013, 08:05 PM:

Food-related but a bit off-topic: does anyone (Teresa?) want a bunch of fresh rosemary? It's an ornamental here, and needs to be cut back for the winter--just email me (name at google's mail.)

#55 ::: KayTei ::: (view all by) ::: October 21, 2013, 11:21 PM:

Janetl @ 31

Can't speak to the variation you're seeing, but most groceries around here have (kosher) bullion cubes in the kosher food isle...

#56 ::: Jenny Islander ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 02:23 AM:

Do any other ciswomen out there find themselves craving particular foods at particular points in their cycles, and I don't mean chocolate? About Week 2 or 3 of my 4-week pill pack, I will go through a few days where I must, must, MUST have lots of animal fat or I will not be able to concentrate or even sleep. Shortly afterward I will find myself craving dark green vegetables and salmon. The cravings may or may not have been intensified by my having been pregnant three times. I quit dieting and started paying more attention to my body's signals with the first pregnancy, so I may just have noticed them more instead of trying to push away the "bad" ones.

#57 ::: lorax ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 09:03 AM:

Jenny Islander @57, I don't, but my wife does - she craves iron-rich foods right after her period. (She's vegetarian, so this manifests as cravings for chickpeas and dark leafy greens.)

#58 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 09:04 AM:

Jenny Islander (57): I had a weird one: I often found myself craving gooey foods a few days before my period started. Specifically sweet and gooey (peanut butter didn't cut it), but it wasn't just the sugar, it was the texture. My cycle was so irregular that it took quite a while for me to figure out what was going on. But every few months I'd be standing in the grocery store going "I need something gooey!" and I'd go buy a cheese-filled coffee cake. Or Milky Way bars--those were pretty much the perfect food when I got like that.

#59 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 12:25 PM:

My go-to vegan broth hack is miso paste. Miso paste mixed with nutritional yeast makes a yummy umami sauce that can go on all sorts of things.

Smoke [onions/vegs]: got a fireplace? Failing that: an outdoor grille? Failing that rocks for a firepit ring & deadfall from your neighbors' trees?

J. @48: [canned salmon] bones turn into chewable little savory bits.

Much to my chagrin, I developed a squick about canned salmon bones sometime in my childhood. Which was really annoying, because my mom stopped making the salmon loaf that I always enjoyed (modulo squicky bones).

#60 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 01:08 PM:

I use miso paste to zing up bread and cheese. Since a little goes a long way, it's very economical. I get from that what I suspect most people get from pickles; what I personally get from pickles is as far away as possible. (I can't stand vinegar, and I can taste it in pretty nearly homeopathic quantities. Hence I also don't do ketchup, mayonnaise and so on.)

#61 ::: Inquisitive Raven ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 03:58 PM:

Once I saw the explanation, I thought funeral potatoes looked tasty, but I'm low carbing it. I thought "I have a jicama, and a recipe for jicama hash browns. Let's see how it works with jicama instead of potatoes.

The only problem I see is that the first recipe I looked at calls for two pounds of potatoes and 1) I don't know how the density of jicamas compares to that of potatoes, and 2) the jicama I've got weighs a bit over a pound and a half with the skin on, and I'm not eating the skin on that thing where I will eat potato skins. I guess I'll have to weigh it again after I peel it.

#62 ::: dcb ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 05:51 PM:

Stock cubes: there's a brand called Kallo available in the UK which does some very low salt cubes (and they're organic and vegetarian - can't remember whether or not they do meat ones as I wouldn't be looking for those).

Re. miso paste, yes, I only recently got a jar and I'm finding it useful. Must try in more recipes.

#63 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 06:41 PM:

Another vegetarian broth hack, this time impersonating beef instead of chicken: Marmite. Which, yes, is nutritional yeast in paste form, but it really works. I used it in French onion soup last night and the non-vegetarian pronounced it "REALLY good."

Of course, that may not have been the Marmite so much as the dry vermouth and the cognac in Julia Child's recipe, bless her.

The only thing is that I don't know how MUCH Marmite makes a given quantity of broth. My method is to add it a tiny blob at a time until it Tastes Right. I'd estimate my tiny blob at around an eighth of a teaspoon. Last night's 2-quarts-of-stock took maybe three blobs? I didn't track it. Marmite is STRONG, so I'd recommend caution.

But it's great. You can even make passable gravy with it.

#64 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 07:04 PM:

An additional sneaky trick for gravy: add a touch of peanut butter for a little extra body/meatiness/umami.

#65 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 22, 2013, 07:09 PM:

I put both Marmite and cashew butter in my standard casserole. In both cases, the requisite amount is "one large dollop", but then I do make enough to feed about ten.

#66 ::: Anne Sheller ::: (view all by) ::: October 23, 2013, 11:19 AM:

Rikibeth @63: Last time I did a vegetarian French onion soup, I added some sautéed mushrooms and a splash of soy sauce. I can see Marmite working well, but for those without it there are other ways to get a boost in umami.

#67 ::: Anne Sheller ::: (view all by) ::: October 23, 2013, 11:26 AM:

Oh, and vegetable broth and soft tofu blended well make a decent vegan cream of X soup base. A little beany before other flavors are added, but the cream of mushroom and garlic soup I made with it was good.

#68 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: October 23, 2013, 10:13 PM:

Anne Sheller: I was thinking about soy sauce for the umami boost (and wondering whether I'd get more mileage from standard Kikkoman or the special "dark" soy sauce I have to buy at the Asian supermarket) when I remembered the jar of Marmite by the toaster. As I'd used it in earlier broth adventures, I went with it.

Tonight the vegetarian housemate had enough scheduling weirdness that I cooked a chicken pot pie with actual chicken in it - however, I still only had (homemade) veggie broth in the house to make the sauce with. I got decent chicken-suggesting flavor by adding a couple of teaspoons of Bell's Seasoning to the roux as I was cooking it!

#69 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 01:51 PM:

BTW: handy roux-mixing trick suggested by Jon Singer's method of mixing glaze: put flour and water in Ziploc bag; seal. Smoosh contents around with hand until smooth. (Nb: use a substantial grade of bag; it's embarrassing when it pops and spews contents all over.)

#70 ::: SamChevre ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 02:08 PM:

Rikibeth @ 68

In my opinion, the dark soy sauce works better for broth-boosting. Use it VERY carefully, or the broth will taste like chinese-restaurant wonton soup broth. A quarter-teaspoon is about right for a gallon of broth.

Or you can always just cheat completely and use MSG (Sazon Goya, or an Asian grocery will often have it.)

#71 ::: Rikibeth ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 02:37 PM:

SamChevre: I keep Sazon Goya around, but "con culantro y achiote", for flavoring burrito rice. Wouldn't work for soup unless I was going for Mexican Tortilla.

I haven't bothered to look for unadulterated MSG, but is it no longer obtainable in regular grocery stores as Ac'cent? That was around when I was a kid.

#72 ::: SamChevre ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 02:48 PM:

MSG may be available in regular stores; I don't use it (too much like cheating), so I haven't looked.

On another topic: This weekend I made one of my favorite soups.

1/2 pound white beans, cooked
1 big bunch kale
1 pound sausage (I used breakfast sausage)

Chop the kale, put all together, cook until very done. Add salt, cayenne, and vinegar to taste. Eat with bread (and butter, if you aren't allergic to dairy like me.)

#73 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 03:41 PM:

SamChevre @72, are you adding broth or stock to that?

#74 ::: SamChevre ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 04:12 PM:

OtterB @ 73

No broth or stock--just water. The sausage isn't browned, either--it's a really easy recipe (and frozen kale or collards work fine as the greens). That's one reason I love it.

#75 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 04:55 PM:

SamChevre @72: Each time my eyes scan over your ingredients list, that first item picks up a few letters from the one below and parses as:

1/2 pound whale

#76 ::: SamChevre ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 05:38 PM:

Jacque @ 75

No no no: you put the soup in the whale, not the whale in the soup.

#77 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: October 24, 2013, 07:19 PM:

Jacque @75 1/2 pound whale

I'm going to have a whole lot of trouble finding room in the freezer for the rest of that whale.

#78 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: October 25, 2013, 12:32 AM:

Rikibeth@71, the standard Japanese brand of MSG is Ajinomoto, and it's easily found in Asian groceries here in California and Hawaii and usually in the Asian food sections at Safeway and similar chains. I bought a shaker of it a few years back just to see what it was like, and I really can't taste the stuff. I gather it's supposed to enhance umami tastes or something like that, which I can taste just fine, but to me the MSG is like very diluted salt by itself, and I don't notice it affecting food tastes.

#79 ::: Victoria ::: (view all by) ::: October 25, 2013, 10:34 AM:

Jenny Islander @ 56

Yes, that happens to me. I've been eating according to my cravings for some time now*. I've never been pregnant.

My craving phases are pretty straight forward. Red meats and certain kinds of sweets (not always chocolate) the week before my period. Vitamin- and iron rich veggies (spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, etc) the week of and the week after. A few days of starches bridge the gap between that and the start of carnivore week.^

Of my friends, I'm the closest to vegetarian** despite being a hardened carnivore. If one goes by serving sizes as recommended by food labels, I range between one or two serving of vegetative material per meal all the way up to five and six. This excludes breakfasts. That is where I get most of my starches. My other meals are mostly meat and vegetable combinations. Although a quick soup made of crushed and cooked ramen cooked with chopped up vegetables and no meat tastes really good when I'm in the starch phase.

* I actually consume fewer calories this way than doing a balanced meal or following a prescribed diet plan.

^ I sometimes have meals made of nothing but various kinds of proteins - vegetable proteins like beans and tofu included.

**One of my vegetable-avoiding friends actually brings vegetable dishes when we do our Craft Day pot lucks because I'm the better baker. I usually default to veggies dishes for ordinary pot lucks. There have been occasions (other than the Craft Day ones - we coordinate those in advance) when the options are limited to starches, meats, and sweets.

#80 ::: Mongoose ::: (view all by) ::: October 25, 2013, 11:21 AM:

OtterB @ 77:

Whale meat again!
Don't know where, don't know when,
But I know we'll eat it all some sunny day;
I'll make a stew
Just like I always do,
But I've got new spices - please don't go away.
With such a bargain, although
It's quite greasy, I know,
You just can't go wrong;
And there's no cause to show
That expression of woe,
It'll keep us all strong.
Whale meat again!
Don't know where, don't know when,
But I know we'll eat it all some sunny day;
I'll make a stew
Just like I always do,
But I've got... why did you have to go away?!

#81 ::: OtterB ::: (view all by) ::: October 25, 2013, 11:44 AM:

Mongoose @80, appreciative snort

#82 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: October 25, 2013, 12:53 PM:

Mongoose @80 <snork>

#83 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: October 25, 2013, 01:33 PM:

I don't remember *when* I bought it, but I have a little shaker of MSG. It is in one of those standard mini-spice bottles, labeled and colored like a lot of my other spices. It might be Safeway or McCormick or one of those others.

My mother and aunt had big bottles of MSG, leftover from my grandparent's restaurant.

#84 ::: Jenny Islander ::: (view all by) ::: October 26, 2013, 02:14 AM:

According to my copy of Cooking Alaskan, whale makes pretty good bobotie and pot roast. But people still eat the skin and blubber in the traditional way--raw-frozen.

#85 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: October 26, 2013, 09:50 AM:

Last night, after a lifetime of loving flan, I had my first orange/cinnamon one. OTP-slash used on purpose. Wow.

#86 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: October 26, 2013, 11:27 AM:

I have recently developed an apparent sensitivity to MSG, which now gives me problems in the same way that canola oil gives my partner problems -- too much of it, and I have what we euphemize as "gastric distress" an hour or two later. Good thing I was already a label-reader; you'd be amazed how many flavored chips, chicharrones, etc. have significant amounts of MSG in the coating, meaning that I have to exercise serious portion control.

#87 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: October 27, 2013, 04:59 PM:

I am making the titular dish RIGHT NOW.

I am not sure if my largest non-stick pop is large enough for the final combination operation, so I'm simmering the greens-in-cream in a large pot. I'll do halfie-halfie and up with two almost full pots.

#88 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: October 27, 2013, 08:48 PM:

Whew! Cooking done. That was an ENOMORMOUS batch of risotto! It filled six 1 lb. cottage cheese containers.

I think it would have been helpful to note the size of the Campbell's broth cans in question. I used Swanson's; I think the cans were larger. Certainly larger than the standard Campbell's condensed soup cans. So my batch came out a bit soupy. I cooked it longer and the rice eventually soaked up the juice.

I also made four cookie sheets of "Halloween Bark," spurred by the discovery of four packages of that nasty cheap chocolate coating stuff. Melt coating, spread on a lined cookie sheet, festoon with pretzel sticks, candy corn, Reese's Pieces, mini marshmallows. I'm bringing it to work. The corner I ate was very satisfying.

#89 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: November 23, 2013, 12:35 AM:

HLN: Local man encounters prewashed dinosaur kale in store, makes above recipe, using non-dinosaur-descendent-veggie broth, half&half, not enough salt. Pretty good. I used arborio rice (1.5 cups instead of 2), and should have probably cooked it at a lower temperature for longer, but it did ok. It really wanted a bit of umami as well as saltiness, so I tried some with parmesan cheese and some with soy sauce, both of which worked well with it.

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