CantHelpMyself Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (1919626)

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Ham Cake-ettes

Reviewed: Jul. 23, 2014
Great idea. I totally tweaked this recipe for my own liking. I didn't have L/O mashed potatoes so I baked and used tater tots (chopped up) in replacement for that. I also used my own spice profile and shaped ham mix into golf ball size. Then I dipped those in egg/milk mix and rolled in panko type bread crumbs. I then froze them on a baking sheet & piled into a zip bag. I also made a pineapple sweet/sour type glaze and tossed the previously frozen ~ then deep fried ham balls in that. Awesome and thanks for the base idea Avon. Get creative I say.
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Berdean's Cube Steak

Reviewed: May 24, 2014
I tried this recipe as written first time. It was good but..I didn't like how the coating became soft/gummy after simmering. So now, I season up the cube steaks & sear on both sides in a bit of bacon drippings. Then I add beef broth (with 1 T cornstarch mixed in)and thin sliced onions. Cover & bake 2 hours at 325. Works great! Tender and tasty. Inexpensive dinner I did not consider for years as I disliked cube steaks I used to just flour/fry and try to eat. Nice idea although I do this a bit differently then written. Great start though, thanks.
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Cream of Celery Soup

Reviewed: Mar. 6, 2014
4.5 Stars ~ only due to 'margarine' and I normally do a roux as the base first - not recipe directions. Easily adaptable though. I scaled this way down using 2 cups each of stock and milk. 1/2 C was buttermilk I needed to use up, just saying. I made this for tuna casserole as I'm weary of Crm of Mushroom soup :) I had 1/2 lb of chopped up celery I froze waiting to make this. Got that out and churned it around in my manual chopper bowl where you turn the blades with a handle on top. Due to the celery being seriously minced, I didn't strain. Also, I added 1 t. dill weed and a bit of lemon juice as I was using with tuna. Most any cream soups I grate in some fresh nutmeg as well. I sauteed the celery and onion in 1/4 C butter. I did add 3 lrge cloves of roasted garlic I pasted down. So, added 1/4 C flour, cooked it for a minute or so then slowly whisked in the stock 1st. Then added the milk, 1/4 C at a time. Oh right, I spaced out the carrots but I didn't miss them. I did simmer soup longer, whisking around occasionally. Soup turned out nice and tasted really good in my tuna casserole. I would eat it as a stand alone soup also and I could probably find other uses as well. Thumbs up! Easy to make and/or change a bit for your own preferences. Thanks!
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Chef John's Italian Meatballs

Reviewed: Feb. 6, 2014
I grind my own pork and chicken or turkey meats. I used 1.5 lbs (1/3 each) ground chicken, pork and 85% grnd beef. I find when mixing the soaked bread crumbs (bit more crumbs, little less milk) with the egg, seasonings and parm...it incorporates into the meat better. I upped the seasonings a bit and instead of salt I used beef bouillon granules. I skipped cooking onions; used 2 t dried minced onions instead. I adjusted some ingredients due to using 3/4 of meat called for (24 oz). Oh yes, I make the mixture a day in advance to allow all flavors to develop. I baked at 375 for 15 mins, flipped and baked for 15 more. Due to the type meats I used, the meat balls are somewhat pale looking so I poured a tsp of gravy master (like kitchen bouquet) into the drippings and rolled the meat balls around in it. Looked a little more appealing (normal) this way. I shape mine a bit larger then a golf ball size. Great stuff CJ! (P.S. I wet my hands a few times while shaping meatballs...much neater.)
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Restaurant Style Red Beans and Rice

Reviewed: Jan. 11, 2014
I used this as a base using actual onions and garlic vs powdered with a few addt'l spices. Other than cooking dry red beans vs using canned, I liked this recipe just fine. I use my own lard, it isn't all that difficult to make. I add liquid smoke (pecan) when I don't have a smoked meat handy but prefer using the ham hock. And - the recipe states to add salt to 'taste' so maybe taste b4 adding any. For me, I didn't need or use a food processor as you can mash some of the beans with the back of a large wooden spoon against side of the pot to thicken it up. Or use an old fashioned potato masher. The instructions to use a food processor is my only reason for 4 stars. Really not necessary. Thanks for the basic recipe though!
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Tangerine Cherry Cranberry Sauce

Reviewed: Dec. 5, 2013
Very good! Even though I had to use ground cinnamon (I had ground up all my cin sticks previously) and used a few shakes of 5 spice (didn't have star anise) AND grated in fresh nutmeg vs cloves...this turned out really well. Only did half the recipe (for 2 of us). As good as it was then, I realized I had 1/2 C of crushed pineapple I wanted to use up so that got incorporated too. Also, did half sugar & 1/2 honey. If per chance you have leftovers, I used mine (about 2/3 C) for a sweet n sour sauce base (added water, then strained) and it was an interesting way to create something else from this. Probably would be good for a pork roast glaze also. Just some ideas. Thanks Chef John!
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Moist Cranberry Pecan Muffins

Reviewed: Dec. 4, 2013
First of all I cut the recipe in half as I didn't want 24 muffins. I also did as Naples (pretty photo she posted too!) and used solely butter and sour cream. On the other hand, I like orange w/cranberry so used it + fresh orange zest in the batter and the sugar/cinnamon topping. I reduced each sugar a bit (personal pref) and used 1 C fresh cranberries (cut in half). That worked out really well however I'll use 1-1/2 to 2 cups next time as using fresh, I definitely wanted more in each muffin. I used walnuts vs pecans. I didn't use papers liners and they popped right out but I have a really nice non-stick muffin pan. Okay ~ only reason for 4 stars is because...if I didn't heat the muffin up for 15 seconds in the micro...they were kinda dry/dense. Once heated a little bit though, they changed to moist & delicious. Glad I decided to give that a try as I was contemplating throwing them away. 'If' for some reason you don't think their good when cooled, give one a quick spin in the micro. I could barely stop eating them once I did that :) Thanks for the recipe thompson!
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Jerky Lover's Jerky - Sweet, Hot and Spicy!

Reviewed: Nov. 24, 2013
Well, for 1 lb of sliced meat...the liquid (2 cups) is a bit much. I looked at the ingredients and did my own thing. Like, I didn't use garlic/onion powders (used minced grn onion and pasted roasted garlic). Went lower with brown sugar and used a red wine vinegar. I also have dried Habanero and Jalapeno powders I incorporated so I backed off the black & red pepper. And because I like it, I added grated peel from 1 tangerine and it's juice. Anyway...after trimming a 1.9 oz Angus bottom round roast (found it on sale) I ended up with 1.3 oz of sliced meat. Once it dried (I have a dehydrator) then it turned into 9 oz of finished product (about 4 hours dehydration). I don't believe you need to have the meat 'swimming' in marinade for good results. I had enough marinade to thoroughly coat meat slices in a large zip bag and massaged it around every few hours before it sat overnight. Good jerky marinade recipe you can fool around with easily. I also do a cross cut on the meat (I have a small electric slicer). Not totally with or against the meat grain. This seems to produce the best chew for jerky. Thanks for the post DIXYCHICK. For 5 bucks I got a decent batch you would pay twice as much for from a vendor.
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Ham Salad Spread

Reviewed: Oct. 25, 2013
4.5 stars actually. I didn't need 1 C of mayo (1/2 C maybe)and used 2 tsp Dijon mustard. Added 1/4 tsp jerk seasoning and a couple shakes of pepper sauce to spice it up a bit. Great as written w/out so much mayo and easy to adjust for personal pref. I think I used a bit more celery and went with 1/4 C minced green onion. After mixed, I sampled. Mine wasn't salty so I added some celery salt. Even as good as it was right after preparing, I found it really rocked the next day. Served on warmed Hawaiian rolls. Real tasty on those or on rye bread with some Swiss cheese.
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Aunt Norma's Rhubarb Muffins

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2013
Yummy muffins. I only had 1 C of frz rhubarb so I added enough re-hydrated dried cherries for the other 1/2 cup. When our rhubarb grows again...I'll use 2 cups. Added 1 tsp salt versus 1/2. I personal liked the walnuts in these. I did cut back to 1 C of brn sugar ~ it's a personal pref. As other's I used butter instead of oil. I also made 1/2 again more of the topping so I'd have enough. Oh, also added cinnamon & a little nutmeg in the batter. I only got 11 normal size muffins for some reason. These barely lasted 2 days between 2 of us. Thanks for the recipe charliebabe. I'll make these again for sure.
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Chef John's Tzatziki Sauce

Reviewed: Oct. 6, 2013
This is generally how I've always made Tzatziki (sans mint)but I love CJ's video's! Their always entertaining :) Anyway. I can't believe the 1 star rating, what? If concerned you might find this too tart/sour; either skip the lemon juice and add grated lemon peel for the flavor or...1/2 the yogurt with thick sour cream. I always taste my yogurt first as different brands are more 'tart' then others and on occasion I've opted to tone it down w/sour crm. Like he says on the video, add in seasoning amounts you feel works for your taste or it's our own fault if it's not good. LOL! Easy to adj if needs more of "something" versus adding too much to begin with. That being said...thanks Chef John for this and your pita bread recipe!
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Ham and Hash Brown Quiche

Reviewed: Oct. 4, 2013
Fairly decent and easily modified with what you have on hand. Although...I decided the ham and cheese amounts excessive for 3 eggs (I even used XL eggs). So, I went with 1/2 C each of chopped smoked deli ham & shredded provolone (cheddar didn't appeal to me) and used 4 eggs. I used an 8" pie pan and I had around 2.5 cups of shredded potatoes (I had to shred my own spuds). I did shred them into a strainer that was submerged in cool water, drained then dried on a tea towel & fresh worked fine. I did toss the melted butter in the potatoes prior to forming a crust. I needed to use up red bell type pepper and 2 small green chili peppers that I had charred/peeled and diced. Oh yeah, I used 1/4 C ea of 2% milk and sour cream in the eggs and seasoned the potatoes a little bit b4 baking. I mixed a few Tblsps each of minced grn onion, provolone, parm shreds and pre-cooked bacon bits and topped the quiche right before it was completely set. With the quiche 6" from the flame I set to broil and a few minutes later...it looked and tasted great! I'll make this again with whatever I have on hand; but less meat/cheese then called for. Turned out 'just right' as dinner for the two of us. Great starting point and easily modified. Thanks for submitting the recipe Candace :)
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Sour Cream, Cucumber and Dill Dip

Reviewed: Sep. 24, 2013
This is a decent sub of Tatziki when you don't have yogurt on hand. First off, I had to reduce to 4 servings as it was just for me and 1 Gyro. I did add 2 cloves of pre-made roasted garlic + 1 tsp olive oil. I also didn't have fresh dill - had to use dried (about 1/2 t). Added a little white pepper as well. Good sub for Gyro's or other Greek dishes when your in a pinch. Thanks sylvaere. Good as a dip for toasted Pita chips or fresh veg also. I think I'll use this recipe in the future as I always have S/C on hand. I get a Hispanic brand of S/C which is really thick on it's own. Worked for me with only minor tweaks.
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Angie's Perfect Dinner Rolls

Reviewed: Sep. 7, 2013
Very good rolls! I cut recipe in 1/2 as I didn't need 36 rolls. Used bread flour vs A/P and did 3 (not 4) rises for the dough. Then the rise for the rolls. I did add 1 T. fresh minced rosemary and some garlic powder, also entire tsp of kosher salt. I baked 12 - 2 oz rolls in a muffin pan and froze another 6 - 1.5 oz dough balls for another time. I brushed melted butter on prior to baking and then again when done but didn't need 1/4 C. Maybe 1 T for each application. Nice light, moist rolls with a slight chew. My company loved them and I will make this recipe again, for sure. Even cold the next day they were good. Thanks Cristy, these ARE excellent!
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Rhubarb Strawberry Jam

Reviewed: Sep. 1, 2013
Hmm...not bad but as others stated..I threw in 2 cups of fzn chopped strawberries. Oh heck no...I only used 1.5 C sugar and even that was sorta sweet. So, I had 4 C frozen Rhubarb and 2 C's of frz strawberries. I used 1/2 a pack of 'Royal' brand strawberry jello. Hey...side note. It's a 1.4 oz box and has way less sugar then jello brand. Either way...I'll do this again...but cut way back on the sugar and use 1/2 the jello ingredient. Mine turned out fine with texture and sweet level. Next time, I won't mash the rhubarb up so much, I prefer some little pieces. All in all, an okay recipe with some adjustments :)
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Wow! Sweet and Sour Sauce

Reviewed: Jul. 24, 2013
2 reasons for 1 star off...for me, too much sugar/ketchup. I did scale recipe to 1/2 (makes a lot) but only added 1/2 of the ketchup called for. I used no sugar as I had to work with what was on hand. I had pineapple preserves so used 1/3 cup of that and 1/3 C pineapple juice. I also used rice vinegar. Before adding 1 T cornstarch (mixed with the pineapple juice), I did add 3 small finely minced jalapeno's, 1/4 C minced sweet red pepper, some minced green onion, ginger & 1 large clove minced garlic. I skipped the hot sauce and only used a bit of red pepper flakes as I prefer to use actual peppers for heat when possible. I used my immersion blender to smooth things out. I added the cornstarch/juice mixture lastly, brought to a low boil and it thickened up just right. I like my SS sauce on the spicy side and this recipe worked well as a base you can toy with easily. Thanks for the idea Nana Nat but I couldn't bring myself to add all the ketchup and didn't need any sugar due to my subs. :)
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New York Italian Style Cheesecake

Reviewed: May 11, 2013
Not bad for no crust and something less heavy. I was shy maybe 1/4 C of Sour Cream and used 1 C sugar. I did drizzle about 1 T of honey into the batter. Used full fat ricotta as well. Everything went splendid until I pulled cake out too soon from oven. It developed a crack after about an hour afterwards - but really, I don't care...just reporting, lol. I covered the top with a strawberry glaze that included fresh sliced berries that covered 3" long crack on top. No big deal for myself. I had filled a roasting pan 1/2 full with boiling water to sit under the cheesecake but it cracked due to rushing things. Sidenote: I am at sea level so not sure if anyone at high alt needs to make adjustments but I believe you probably should. Just an FYI. Oh... I did add lemon zest along with the juice, very good! Also used fresh vanilla bean and added 1/4 t of almond extract. YUM!
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Cumin and Coriander Chickpea Salad

Reviewed: May 11, 2013
hmmmm, this was 'pretty good'. I scaled in half but used full recipe amount of dressing due to adding mmmm, around a 1/2 C of diced English cuc and more diced peppers (red/green & orange). I wound up adding in more fresh lemon juice as it was fairly oily. I did make a day in advance but added the cuc's an hour or so before serving. It was okay as is but...I added some minced jalapeno and some salt to get it tasty enough for myself. I did use 1 can garbanzo and 1 can drained/rinsed black beans. Not bad but felt it was missing "something". Oh well...my relatives visiting ate most of it but I'm not sure I'll make this again for myself w/out a bunch of tweaking. Thanks tho! :)
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Chef John's Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Reviewed: May 6, 2013
Man, I was so excited to make this. What a giant fail and I followed recipe exactly. I don't normally do that but I wanted to rate this by following directions/ingredients. The pineapple topping stuff stuck to cast iron (highly seasoned one)after the 10 minutes cool time and the entire cake was a huge mess. Cake part was definitely like a dry biscuit...nothing like cake. Sorry, didn't work for me and what a waste. Boo! First Chef John flop...bummer.
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Chef John's Ham and Potato Soup

Reviewed: May 5, 2013
I mostly did this recipe as written but omitted the water and added ham with the potatoes in step 3. Even so...after mashing a few times...still fairly thin soup. So, I quickly cooked 3 more smallish peeled Idaho potatoes (cubed small) and added those in. Much better! I like more potatoes and less liquid. I did add a few more herbs/spices I wanted and did use your normal baking type potatoes. Personally, I don't feel the water is necessary and make a couple more potatoes then called for. I didn't use heavy cream either as I don't buy that - used 2% milk and a large dollop of sour cream. Good base but for me, it needed to be less thin and more chunks of potato. Thanks CJ for the good start! I forgot, I did add around 1/2 cup of shredded sharp cheddar and really liked that addition. :)
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