Saturday, July 3, 2010

In the Kitchen
Last night, we had a couple and their baby over for dinner. We had hamburgers with Chilean potato salad and chocolate molten cake for dessert.

Hamburgers
We spice up our hamburgers a bit by adding finely diced onions, bell peppers, and some minced garlic; along with salt, pepper, fresh basil, eggs, and bread crumbs or saltines (in which case we don't add salt).
Then, we add cheese (Swiss, muenster, cheddar, goat... whatever we have in the fridge at the time. If you like a really spicy burger, I recommend adding pepper jack!). Once the burger is pulled off the grill, you can top it off with lettuce, tomato and sauteed mushrooms. We don't particularly like catsup, so you'll have to do without at our house. However, we do have mayonnaise and a organic brown mustard. I just can't make myself like the yellow stuff! We also are a bit funky in the fact that we use toasted wheat bread for our "buns." And (how did I almost forget)... BACON, we add lots of yummy baked bacon to our burgers!!! Yes, I did say baked bacon...

Helpful Hint
One of my close friends suggested to me to bake my bacon. You do so at 400 degrees. That way, you don't have all the bacon grease popping on you and your clean stove. I decided to make it on a piece of aluminium foil. This makes clean-up a breeze!
Sometimes, I will reuse the bacon grease if I'm cooking something that would benefit from some bacon flavor (which is almost anything).


Chilean Potato Salad
Boil (4) wedged medium potatoes with their skin (that's where the nutrients are)and about a cup of sliced baby carrots. Once cooked, I add in a Tbs. of freshly minced garlic (that cuts the intensity of the garlic). You can then strain the water. Let cool; then add 3 Tbs of mayonnaise, some chopped dill, 1/2 tsp salt.

Helpful Tools
I have a great little vegetable scrubber that my sister gave all of my family members for a stocking stuffer one year. It makes cooking so much easier!

Good knives make all the difference, in the kitchen! They don't have to necessarily be expensive. You just need a few sharp ones.
I also received a knife sharpener as a stocking stuffer one year. If you don't have one, don't fret. You can use aluminum foil to sharpen them. (This works for scissors, also. Just cut a piece a few times, wash and watch out for your fingers).

Molten Cake

First, melt (by double boiling) 1 stick of butter and 6 oz semi sweet chocolate.
Then, mix 4 eggs and 1/3 cup of (organic) unbleached or brown sugar.
After that, you will mix the chocolate mixture with the egg mixture, and add 4 Tbs of unbleached flour.
Then, you can pour it into either a greased (with butter) cupcake pan or individual greased glass containers. (You will want to fill them up 2/3 of the way.
Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. The inside should be firm, but it will not look cooked!
I then add some extra chocolate morsels and serve with homemade whipped cream and raspberries.

This recipe is derived from another recipe I found online:
http://allrecipes.com//Recipe/molten-chocolate-cakes-with-sugar-coated-raspberries/Detail.aspx


Helpful Hint
When preparing the whipped cream, open the whipping cream carton all the way. Pour the contents into the blender. You may sweeten it, if you would like. Use the whip setting until the cream thickens. Then drop the bottom out of your blender and let the whip fall into the open container below.

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