Tag Archives: family

The Very Best Kind of Recipes

29 Jan
Have you ever tried to get a to-die-for recipe off of a family member, and they just sort of listed ingredients at you? With some recipes, the instructions and ingredients are basically, “do it until it seems right.”
These recipes are the very best kind of recipes.
My Dad’s chili (in the previous post), my meatloaf, and most of my holiday recipes are like this. These recipes tend to be the ones that were passed on from family member to family member, and altered with each person.
These guess-and-check recipes are ones that stick with us, and that we can alter to our own tastes. BUT they can be quite frustrating for a new cook.
As I am attempting to write my cookbook, I am finding that I have to measure out exactly how much of what I put into my meals. Which is a pain. But eventually, hopefully, someone will be able to use that and make it their own. I am searching for this kind of recipe to experiment on, and hopefully fill my cookbook with. Thanks to technology, there are videos of people making food like this all over the internet. And you can kind of judge how much of what to put in by watching.
Do you have any of these kinds of recipes? Please do share.
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My Ultimate Comfort Food

27 Jan
It’s winter time. It is bitter cold, windy, icy, gray, and miserable outside. Not to mention that this semester has been really difficult for me. I’m feeling comfort food.
My favorites are grilled cheese, mashed potatoes, and chili. My Dad only makes two meals. Pasta or chili. His chili is phenomenal. It only took a few months after I left home to call him and beg him for his spicy yet sweet recipe. Not surprisingly, his recipe was, “throw in this, that, and a stick of butter.”
Everyone has their own way of making chili. Mine is to throw the canned goods into the pot on med-low heat, chop up the veggies, throw them in, and brown the meat and toss it in.
Theres not exact measurements, because I guess and check like my Dad does. But here’s a list of ingredients for chili, Pittsburgh style 😀
-Green peppers, banana peppers, small sliced mushrooms, a sweet onion
-a HUGE can of kidney beans and a small can of black beans
-canned, undrained: whole tomatoes, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste (splurge on the good stuff, not the generic. its worth it.)
-ground turkey meat (about a poundish?)
-at least two tablespoons of white sugar
-half a stick of butter. real unsalted butter, not margarine.
-about a half cup of water
and that’s about it. toss it in a big pot together, let it cook on med-low for about 3 hours. Stir it a lot, because it will burn if you don’t.
Every time I eat a bowl of this it reminds me of when I was younger- when snow was magical and not ominous,  when Dad would blast hippie records on his record player, and when I didn’t have pounds of homework every night.
Are there any dishes you gravitate towards in the winter? Any family recipes you would love to perfect?