shris Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (10272123)

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Chef John's Gazpacho

Reviewed: Jul. 22, 2013
Made this with fresh veg from my garden. Left out the cayenne and the jalapeno so my young son could eat it. Also left out the lime as our tomatoes were bright enough without. My son didn't care for the raw onion, and my husband and I decided I should dice the onion a lot smaller next time (I used my vitamix to chop the veg). I was, however, very pleased with the flavor. I think I might go heavier on the cumin and oregano next time, just to play up the Spanish influence. I made some biscuits to go with (didn't have time to make bread) and that was dinner. It was delicious. Our cherry tomatoes are candy-sweet, and the big yellow tomatoes were very mild and relatively low acid. So this ended up on the sweet end of the spectrum, which really suited me very well. I think it will be even better tomorrow.
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Peanut Butter Frosting

Reviewed: Jan. 10, 2013
OK, I modified this one. 1) I used Smuckers Natural PB, the one that only has peanuts and salt, and separates in the jar. 2) I did not use any butter or margarine. I wanted the most peanut flavor, so I used 1.5 cups of PB, which ended up to be the full jar. 3) I used 2 cups of powdered sugar. 4) I added extra salt to get a more Reese's cup flavor out of the mix, since I was going to spread it on an 'extreme chocolate cake'. 5) I didn't measure my cream, I just put in what looked right. Now, I ended up with something that looked a bit broken and oily/shiny. I think this is because my PB was *warm*. I keep my house on the warm side of room temp, so my PB was *soft* and this brand tends to separate anyway. I put some leftover frosting into the fridge, and discovered that once it was fully chilled, I could mix it up without it being all shiny. So if you get an oily/shiny/broken looking frosting, chill it well and give it another mix before spreading it. I did not do this, so my frosting looked shiny and weird...but it tasted great and got great reviews. I am very glad I added extra salt. This frosting on the chocolate cake was preferred by my adult guests over the same chocolate cake with an excellent chocolate buttercream frosting, even though it was ugly. :) Next time I'm going to refrigerate my PB before mixing. Four stars for the basis of the recipe. A fifth star next year if I can eliminate the shine with refrigeration.
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Marrakesh Vegetable Curry

Reviewed: Oct. 11, 2012
This was very tasty, and a nice change. I did not have spinach, so I used arugula. And I had to skip the zucchini as I did not have any, and skipped the cayenne because the kids can't handle the heat. I also had to use navy beans instead of garbanzos. So lots of substitutions. I wish I'd had some ginger, that would have been lovely. I did not double the spices, though I could easily have done so I suppose. I didn't really feel like they needed to be doubled necessarily, but it would have tasted good that way too.
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Fluffy Peanut Butter Frosting

Reviewed: Sep. 23, 2012
I think the difference between a broken greasy blob and a wonderfully fluffy frosting is twofold. 1) The proper ingredients at just the right temperature, and 2) a stand mixer vs a hand-held mixer. I used a stand mixer, Jif Natural peanut butter, and organic butter that was room temp. For a few brief seconds I saw 'fluffy' and then it turned 'lumpy and greasy'. I used it anyway as the filling for my cakes, since it tasted fine. Then I took the leftovers and stiffened them up by adding several tablespoons of cocoa powder and a bit of heavy cream. I would suggest using the cream instead of milk, since the water content of milk will tend to increase the risk of breaking. Likewise I would recommend using a handheld mixer to make the 'fluffy' stage a little easier to spot before it disappears. The cocoa-stiffened leftovers became writing icing, and I ended up frosting the cake with a chocolate buttercream. It all worked out in the end, but I did want to suggest not using the stand mixer for other folks who try this in the future. Personally, I found the peanut butter flavor a bit weaker than I wanted. The recipe definitely needs some salt to get back that 'reese's cup' type flavor. I probably won't end up using this one again because of that. Maybe a stronger flavored peanut butter would help.
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Eggplant Parmesan With Easy Homemade Sauce

Reviewed: Aug. 11, 2012
We used the homemade tomato sauce we made earlier in the year instead of this recipe--we like Alton Brown's roasted tomato sauce. The method for this parmesan was terrific. We were very pleased with this, and it gave us just enough time to prepare side dishes to go with. An excellent method.
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Spinach and Rice Alfredo

Reviewed: Nov. 10, 2011
This was pretty good. I was happy with the texture but the kids were not enamored of the spinach flavor. I think more spices would have helped. The garlic I used was previously roasted, rather than fresh. I also used some monterey jack as well as parmesan cheese, and short grain rice rather than long. It was ooey and creamy, but it needed some other strong flavor to really make it pop. Maybe my parmesan was inferior, dunno.
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Country-Style Steak

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2011
A very good, basic steak and gravy recipe. I did a slight variation on the instructions, using the flour with the remaining oil in the pan to make a roux, then thinning it with the broth to make a gravy before I poured it over the steak. I doubled the whole thing--but the second pound of meat was stew chunks rather than cube steak. Also took it out of the oven about 20 minutes early. Everything worked just fine. It was tasty and worked well. Next time I would add onions as a few other recipes mention, and I might try a few herbs too just to foodie it up a bit. But this is an excellent stick-to-your-ribs entree. Just go lighter on the oil if you can, make sure to trim the fat from any meat you include, and don't be afraid to take it out a little early if you're starving. I am sure this could be done on the stove top as well as other recipes mention, especially for the original recipe quantity.
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Pumpkin Pancakes

Reviewed: Oct. 16, 2011
Made them as written, except for two things. I used whole wheat flour and I doubled everything so we could have leftovers in the freezer. I used pumpkin puree I made myself. The pumpkin flavor is mild, but it goes very well with maple syrup. Next time I might go heavier on the spices, as they were quite mild also and I like them punchy. Next time I might also put the brown sugar in with the wet ingredients, as it's a pain to chase the lumps out with a fork when it's in the dry stuff. The batter is a 'dry' batter, not runny like a lot of people are used to. This is rather like a muffin batter, and spreading it around with the disher is an excellent technique. I make my pancakes very small--silver dollar style--so they will be easier to handle on my griddle.
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Apple Strudel Muffins

Reviewed: Aug. 31, 2011
These were great. I used apples that are 'good for sauce' and chopped them tiny. I didn't use any extra apples, it seemed like there were plenty. I did, however, add cinnamon to both the batter and the topping. I also split it up half white flour and half whole wheat flour. The batter was very stiff and the muffins didn't really peak, but that's more of an aesthetic issue than a flavor thing. I didn't have salted butter for my batter, so I used unsalty and added extra salt--about a teaspoon, which is probably more than the equivalent, but it made the muffins more complex and addictive. Very pleased with how they turned out. A little extra liquid might not be bad, it would probably help them peak better. But they really were delicious.
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Adrienne's Tom Ka Gai

Reviewed: May 27, 2011
This may not be perfectly authentic, but I was fairly pleased with the result. The instructions to cook chicken breast for a half hour after it's basically fully cooked in the pan, though, can only result in a tough piece of chicken. So I think I would change the order..first cook the spices, then the veg, then add the liquid and *then* toss in the chicken. I made some substitutions here because I didn't have everything the recipe called for. So I'm rating this more for the method than the specific flavor of the exact combo of ingredients. I took off one star for the tough chicken. We served ours with Quinoa, which was interesting but maybe not the most successful. I also did not have lemongrass, which I think would have been lovely. But this method is a great use of bok choy, it goes very well with the coconut milk and fish sauce and ginger.
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Okonomiyaki

Reviewed: May 21, 2011
I had to make a lot of substitutions because of the veg I did/didn't have. So the flavor of this exact recipe I can't really comment on. Our version used chicken, napa, carrots, a regular onion, garlic scapes, and grated radish. The egg mix was as written. We pre-cooked the stronger flavored items to make sure they'd 'cook down', and my griddle was about 350 degrees for cooking. I would say this method is five stars, because we're going to be able to take the method and use it for anything, which is a complete godsend, since we are members of two CSAs--one for veg, one for meat. So we get tons of eggs and have no particular choice about what veg we get each week. This method will work for about anything, we think, and adding different spices will allow us to change this dish around completely--even to different 'ethnicities' if we want to. We made our own sauces--one mayo-based with wasabi and teriyaki, and the other a thai peanut sauce. Both sauces did well with this recipe. With our substitutions I would say this pancake is sort of a 'base' for the sauce you choose. With stronger flavored veg and the traditional okonomiyaki flour maybe sauces would be more optional. I deeply appreciate this method, it will work fantastically with even the weirdest veg we get from the CSA. Thank you!
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Coconut Curry Pumpkin Soup

Reviewed: Mar. 20, 2011
This was a very good soup. I left out the red pepper flakes for the sake of the kids, and I used full fat coconut milk, fresh pumpkin and chicken broth because that was what I had. We were very pleased with the results.
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Easy Mashed Potato and Roasted Vegetable Enchiladas

Reviewed: Feb. 20, 2011
I used this more for the idea of mashed potatoes in an enchilada than for the recipe itself. I had leftover mashed potatoes, and I decided to pan-brown my veg instead of roasting, and I used items I had on hand rather than the items called for in the recipe. The method was good and the result was what I wanted. I rate this 4 stars because of the mashed potato flakes rather than real mashed potatoes, but the rest would be quite yummy. I used the ten minute enchilada recipe from this site, which worked out beautifully.
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Ten Minute Enchilada Sauce

Reviewed: Feb. 20, 2011
This was exactly what I was looking for. I felt like it needed a touch of sweetness after it was made, so I added a little bit of ketchup and a little honey. It made the right amount of sauce for my usual enchilada pan, and I will definitely make it again.
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Old Fashioned Chicken Pot Pie

Reviewed: Jan. 29, 2011
I used this recipe more for the method than the exact flavor. The method was good. I made two pies, but I only had one top crust, so I made a lattice top on both. I used Golden Mushroom soup, and a lot more milk than called for to thin it out. Should've thinned it more, the lattice top doesn't hold the steam in the way a full top crust does. I added a lot of other herbs and spices. Even tossed in some dried mustard greens I had lying around. The chicken I used was a smoked chicken, and I used a little less than half a smoked chicken in the two pies with a lot of frozen mixed veg I heated in the microwave. It took a good deal longer to bake than the 25 to 30 minutes, but it was a deep dish pie, and there were two. Hubby was very happy with it, the kids loved it. Rating it four stars because it obviously needs a lot more interest than the base recipe--more herbs and spices, etc. But the method is good.
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Mrs. Sigg's Fresh Pumpkin Pie

Reviewed: Jan. 23, 2011
As another reviewer said, it's a little loose if you put in the entire can of evap milk. I think it will firm up a bit if I short it on the milk next time. The flavor was good, I made my own pumpkin pie spice and I was pleased with the balance, though I used a tablespoon instead of 2.5 tsp as my family likes heavily spiced pies. I should have pre-baked the crust, it was underdone. I used a glass deep-dish on top of an aluminum 1/2 sheet pan for a total of 52 minutes. The crust was a refrigerated rolled-up pillsbury crust. The pie itself ended up rather pale, perhaps I should have left it in a few more minutes, but I was afraid to leave it in too long. I took it out as soon as it stopped jiggling. I will definitely keep this recipe, but I will prebake the shell for a few minutes and short the milk next time to make a slightly firmer custard.
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Simple Whole Wheat Bread

Reviewed: Nov. 7, 2010
These instructions are great. The flavor and texture of this loaf are just what we were looking for. I had been using the 'no knead' method to make a bunch of different kinds of breads, looking for a good sandwich loaf--slightly sweet, tough enough to hold up in the sandwich setting, and not too tough in the crust. This loaf delivers. I did as another reviewer suggested--making two loaves instead of three from the listed ingredients. It made a perfect sandwich sized loaf. I changed nothing. I may try later with a higher percentage of whole wheat flour, but this recipe and method rocks. I used my kitchenaid for the mixing and kneading, then I finished kneading by hand, divided into two loaves, and baked them off. Hubby is very pleased. I may not go back to no-knead. :)
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Bou's Chicken

Reviewed: Oct. 3, 2010
There wasn't an instruction to cut the whole chicken into pieces, but obviously one must or the chicken will not all contact the sauce in the pot. The only thing I changed was cider vinegar instead of white. I left the rest as is. We decided it was fairly tasty, but could use a little something. Not exactly sure what. Maybe onions and garlic, maybe other veggies, maybe less sugar. I served it with a saute of various vegetables, and the kids ate it up. My daughter particularly enjoyed the sauce. My husband liked that the meat was loosening from the bones. I used a rather larger bird than called for, and the breast ended up slightly dry without the sauce. But with the sauce it was fine. We decided to keep the recipe and try to find out what's missing (for us).
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Chocolate Cookie Buttercream Frosting

Reviewed: Sep. 24, 2010
Eh, this was very lightly chocolate-flavored. That's OK, that's what I wanted for the peanut butter cupcakes I made from the recipe on this site. But I can see how folks would be disappointed if they're looking for something hershey-flavored or even darker. I was slightly disappointed in the amount of frosting, I made two dozen cupcakes and was piping the frosting on, and even though a few of the cupcakes had been eaten without frosting, this batch made barely enough to pipe the rest. So the '24' servings shown would have been *very* thinly frosted cupcakes or rather small cookies. Eh well, I thought it might be too little going in but I didn't have any more powdered sugar than called for or I would have doubled it. Anyway, I think next time I would double the recipe for the full batch of cupcakes, and maybe add a little more cocoa powder if I needed a heavier chocolate flavor. I might toss in a dash or two of salt as well, as I really like salt with chocolate. This was quite a sweet frosting as well. Not really picking faults, you understand, just describing the result so that others will know what they're getting into. The texture was good, it was nice for piping without adding any extra milk beyond what was called for. If you are looking for dark chocolate, seek elsewhere. This is very lightly chocolatey, very mild, good for a mild-tasting cookie or cupcake.
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Peanut Butter Cupcakes

Reviewed: Sep. 24, 2010
These were pretty good. I think this is probably as much peanut butter flavor as you're likely to get in a cake. I found the sugar level appropriate, but added more salt (about a teaspoon) and I'm glad I did. I subbed more PB for the shortening, since commercial PB is basically shortening and peanuts. You definitely need an electric beater for this, and don't expect to incorporate much air. I think that's why a lot of folks reported not much rise--with very few bubbles to start with, the small amount of soda and acid aren't going to make a whole lot either and you won't get the light and fluffy volume you might have been hoping for. With the amount of batter, I used an ice cream disher to measure each cup, and my disher fills my normal muffin tins almost full. I thought that might be rather too full, but since the rise is small, it wasn't bad. The muffins did spread out, and the tops ended up rather like peanut butter cookies sitting on top of a little, dense cake. We like them. We didn't have any trouble with the tops breaking off, either, mostly because nothing stuck to the pan at all--used paper liners for the bottoms based on other reviews. I plan to frost them with chocolate today. I am debating popping the tops and doing an inner layer of chocolate instead of doing the tops, just to preserve the 'cookie' look they have. Anyway, pretty good unfrosted. Next time I might try changing it to add lift, maybe more egg or soda/tartar or milk.
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