family-cook Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (13022134)

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Crock-Pot® Mushrooms

Reviewed: Jun. 19, 2013
Perfect office potluck because it's easy to transport and keep warm. I like Italian Seasoning packets as a sort of all-purpose go-to for meats, seafood, and veggies... without cream or buttermilk you don't get that readily identifiable "salad dressing" aspect. With this Mushroom recipe, I started with 2 pounds for my group because I figured -- rightly so -- this was the dish where everyone would linger. It was gone first.
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Miracle Lasagna

Reviewed: Mar. 15, 2013
This is my basic lasagna recipe... sometimes made with my own meat sauce, if I have it on hand, so I get plenty of Italian sausage into it. Sometimes, I use a pouch of pre-shredded cheese for convenience. Often, I add spinach as per the very similar http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Extra-Easy-Spinach-Lasagna/Detail.aspx. A layer of sun-dried tomatoes is a special treat. I don't know anyone(!) who parboils lasagna noodles anymore; it's messy and altogether un-necessary.
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It's Chili by George!!

Reviewed: Dec. 3, 2012
This is must-have in your repertoire. George has this same chili recipe posted elsewhere on Allrecipes and a few thousand people have rated and reviewed his recipes. Very reliable. Remember to try popular variants such as chili-mac (or chili spaghetti) and chili size (a knife-and-fork version of a chili-burger).
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Flatlander Chili

Reviewed: Dec. 3, 2012
Reliable recipe and worthy of being in your repertoire. Knowing ahead of time that I don't like Kidney beans, I substitute Pintos. Chili without beans is often called "Texas" chili... a misnomer because Texans like beans the way Mungo likes beans. Don't skimp on the chili powder. No, no! But do use a premium chili powder. Your chili dish will never be any better than the chili spices used in it. Morton's Chili Blend, if you can find it, or Schilling. Gephardt's if that's all you can find. And taste it before you decide on the cumin... some chili blends already have cumin in them. Good chili isn't necessarily hot; it is, however, well spiced and flavorful. I'm more inclined toward crushed tomatoes or tomato puree, but out on the cattle drives where chili was invented (to use up less than prime beef scraps) they probably didn't tomatoes at all. It's a very personal dish, but some chuck-wagon cooks were buried beside the trail just because of their chili.
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Napoleons

Reviewed: Sep. 12, 2012
Very good. Apricot is traditional and ideal, but my mom puts up blackberry jelly every year so it's on hand and I used it. I "buttered" the top and bottom of the center pastry and very much liked the color contrast. Also used thin stripes of blackberry on the top. I served it cool, not cold, and it fit a summer dinner fine.
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Carnitas with Pico De Gallo

Reviewed: Aug. 3, 2012
Well done, carnitas expert! This crock-pot method is perfect for pulled pork too. I used a shorter cooking time (12 hours) because a 4-pound shoulder is about the max from my supermarket. I also used less liquid with that smaller shoulder roast, but I stayed with the full 1-cup measure of cumin. (**ALWAYS leave the lid on a crock-pot. Don't stir it or peek just to see if its working. It is. Muster your will power!**) Chili peppers lose their heat with longer cooking, also when seeded. I add them near the end, maybe leave in the seeds if I really want heat. Or put out a bowl of minced jalapenos for people to sprinkle to taste. This Pico deGallo is top-drawer. Use it often. In place of salsas and other dips. Try this Pico for quesadillas.
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Zebra Cake III

Reviewed: Aug. 3, 2012
This is a great take along to potlucks and office parties. I shape it as a double, side-by-side log with the cookies assembled on the diagonal. Then it travels better and can be sliced straight across and still get the zebra effect. Yes, the Famous Wafers are hard to find, but supermarkets nowadays often have request cards at the customer service desk. My dad retired with Nabisco, so when I was a kid Famous Wafers were always available to mom.
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Omelet in a Mug

Reviewed: Jul. 31, 2012
Clever, SHARLENE J MCKEE. She has such good recipes. And the people who commented really did well too -- good ideas. Plus-plus on this one. Me, I used a bit of salsa (no milk) for a huevos rancheros fling. Next time I'll make it a chili cheese omelet. Use the same mug to preheat the chili and then pour in the eggs. No pan to wash up.
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FRIED MAMMOTH OKRA

Reviewed: Jul. 31, 2012
Good! I love okra, especially fried! Unfamiliar with "Mammoth" variety? Use Choppee, Dwarf Long, Annie Oakley, Cajun or whatever your store has in the produce section. (Fresh okra is regional -- flippin' hard to find in Utah. Frozen will do.) I don't pan-fry because I don't want to wipe up greasy splatter. Use your Fry Daddy or Presto Kitchen Kettle to deep-fry neatly. I didn't separate the egg because I don't want a yolk hanging around. Just use the whole egg -- that smidge of cholesterol won't stop your heart dead in its tracks. Use the breadcrumbs you have on hand. Seasoned, if possible. Be sure to let breaded foods sit a while so the coating will dry a little. Food will crisp better and the coating will stay on. Love fried okra!
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Broken Spaghetti Risotto

Reviewed: Jul. 15, 2012
Splendid. Good as a side dish, better as a springboard for one-dish dinners. The method is clearly written and easy to follow. My Mexican neighbor put this dish in my head years ago. She made it a meal with chorizo and black beans, called it "Fried Spaghetti". The review from pvpba on July 15th made me try shrimp. Like pvpba, I would say: stay away from the green shaker-can of parmesan cheese... use a good, sharp Reggiano or Romano from the deli. Adjust the liquid, adjust the garlic, but it's definitely a five-star recipe.
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Hot German Potato Salad

Reviewed: Jul. 8, 2012
I loved this. It travels well -- we had it on the patio. Changed it only by omitting the onion (dietary restriction) and sprinkled finely minced green onions over it at the last minute. The tapioca worked a treat. One of my mother's favorite thickeners was instant potato flakes, which probably would work fine in this recipe, but I gained some insight into tapioca here. I sliced my potatoes a bit thicker and 4 hours seemed okay. Please, please stifle the urge to take the lid off and stir any slow-cooker.
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Jalapeno Pie Mini Tarts

Reviewed: Jun. 29, 2012
Great finger food -- that's the way everybody ate them, even though I put out cocktail forks and plates. I specifically used pickled jalapenos with the little tidbits of carrot and such in them. They are much spicier, so use less. I laid a nice slice on the bottom, then served them bottoms up so people could see the pepper. Pretty presentation on a bed of cilantro from the produce aisle.
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Mexican Style Shredded Pork

Reviewed: May 11, 2012
Where I live, the stores always have what they call "country-style" pork ribs and almost always have pork butt (Boston butt), so those are generally the most economical purchase. I have to de-fat the drippings, but the meat is more flavorful than pork loin. I follow recipes none too closely, adding more chipotle peppers (canned) than called for. Adding a small can of jalapenos suits our taste, too. Peppers are stronger when added at the tail-end of the cooking time; they will mellow themselves considerably during long cooking.
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Blue Cheese Potatoes Delmonico

Reviewed: Feb. 19, 2012
Very good as written. To keep a sauce or gravy lump-free, slide the pan off direct heat, whisk in the liquid, then return the pan to heat and continue to cook gently. It works for all the roux (flour and fat) based gravy/sauces. I look for blue with the most blue veining - it has the sharpest flavor. The only thing I changed was to cut the potatoes into slabs rather than cubes; that way I could more-or-less layer the sauce within the potatoes.
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Super-Easy Stir-Fry Article - Allrecipes.com

Reviewed: Feb. 19, 2012
Good starting place for all sorts of Asia-inspired dinners. I wander down the produce aisle slowly looking for whatever tastes appeal to me at that moment. Look at cheaper items on special. I particularly like summer squashes - yellow crook-neck or zucchini - when they are plentiful. The more colorful bell peppers make the dish prettier. (Red bell has more carotene than green bell.) You can skip over the more expensive Bok Choy in favor of Savoy or round-head cabbage. Try different things in different proportions; get over the idea there is a recipe to follow when stir-frying.
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English Muffin Loaves

Reviewed: Jan. 16, 2012
Made several times. Only problem ever was when my yeast wasn't strong. Yeast doesn't necessarily last as long as the date on the package would indicate. And there are, in your kitchen, things that will kill yeast -- like the merest trace of any sort of sanitizer product. It's always a good practice to start yeast with a bit of warm liquid -- 110 to 120 degrees is ideal. Or just remember "bottle temp", like a few drops on your wrist from a baby bottle. Most bread recipes start the yeast. This recipe can be done that way, too,
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Three Cheese Manicotti

Reviewed: Dec. 13, 2011
Love the cheese blend. Economical to use some Jack cheese and works great. I added a couple tablespoons Romano. Parmesan would work, too. I never par-boil pasta for lasagna, so I didn't for this manicotti either. With a bit of extra liquid (1/4 cup or so) in the baking dish, it cooks just fine. I used my own spaghetti sauce, so it wound up with meat in it. Next time I'll add some spinach to the cheese filling.
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Slow Cooker Cassoulet

Reviewed: Dec. 13, 2011
This recipe is a big yes. Every recipe is flexible; I take "to your taste" very seriously. With that in mind, I knew the kielbasa wasn't what I wanted. I used italian sausage -- the mild, or "sweet" kind, not hot Italian. (Although, I think that might be good too, in a different way.) Many people (most men) don't care for breast meat because it tends to be bland and dry. I use boneless thighs. Garlic: use more, or add it for the last hour or two. Garlic flavor cooks away. Many seasonings do. Crock-pot: don't lift the lid, don't stir, do not disturb. Suppress your natural cook's tendency to check the pot. Slow-cookers only work one way.
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Slow Cooker Turkey Legs

Reviewed: Dec. 13, 2011
Very good. Great for turkey pieces. We like turkey year 'round, and this recipe will be adapted to a dry barbecue rub this summer. I love crock-pot recipes. When it comes to seasonings, always use your own judgement.
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11 users found this review helpful

Pork Chops with Apples, Sweet Potatoes, and Sauerkraut

Reviewed: Nov. 7, 2011
Yes! Baked kraut is very mellow in the end. I like pork steak better than chops, but a roasting cut of pork, like a shoulder, is sublime. This same recipe works well with country-style ribs, too. When I was a kid, I worked in a German restaurant for a while, and they lightly rinsed their kraut then put a healthy squeeze of lemon over it along with the brown sugar.
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