Sunday, September 20, 2009

Schweinskoteletten mit Knackwurst and Kartoffeln--Pork Chops with Knockwurst and Potatoes

On a bored day off my husband and I decided to give ourselves the challenge of making a feast with $20 to spend. The idea was to go to the grocery stores and specialty markets in our area and hunt for something interesting and then make a feast with ingredients that we already had at home.

Towards the end of the afternoon we ended up finding knockwurst, which we'd not seen in awhile, not being as common at the markets as brats.
Somehow I wasn't surprised when we ended up going with German cuisine after we'd been viewing Richard's friend McArdle's pictures of Oktoberfest in Cincinnatti.

We ended up spending the rest of our money on some little jars of mustard and horseradish, individual beers, hoagie rolls, and sauerkraut. When we got home I dug through my out of print Time Life Foods of the World: Recipes: The Cooking of Germany that I purchased at the library's most recent book sale. We were supposed to slice the knockwurst up in the recipe, but since we had hoagie rolls and mustard, we only sliced up one and cooked the other four whole. This was indeed a feast when we served it with the sauerkraut as well. The recipe serves six, we halved it, and saved leftovers for a second meal.

  • 1 TB caraway seeds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 center cut loin pork chops, cut 1/2 inch thick
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 TB shortening
  • 1/2 pound knockwurst, sliced in 1/4 inch rounds
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped, peeled carrots
  • 3 small sweet gherkins (I substituted homemade pickles), drained rinsed in cold water and finely chopped
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 4 large boiling potatoes (about 1 1/2 LB) peeled and sliced into 1/3 inch rounds
  • 6 medium sized tomatoes, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped (I substituted sliced romas from the garden)

  • Combine the caraway seeds, salt and pepper, and press the mixture firmly into both sides ofthe pork chops.
  • Dip the chops in flour, then shake off the excess.
  • In a heavy 12 inch skillet (I used my dutch oven), melt the shortening over high heat until a light haze forms above it.
  • Brown the chops for about 5 minutes on each side, turning them with kitchen tongs and regulating the heat so that meat colors quickly and evenely without burning.
  • Transfer the chops to a plate and add the knockwurst, onions, carrots, and gherkins to the fat remaining in the skillet.
  • Cook over moderate heat, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.
  • Return the chops to the pan and pour in the stock.
  • The stock should come just to the top of the chops without covering them.
  • If necessary add more stock or water.
  • Arrange the potato slices evenly over the chops, covering them completely and scatter the chopped tomatoes over them.
  • Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low, and cover the skillet.
  • Simmer undisturbed for 45 minutes, or until the potatoes and chops show no resistance when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife (I ended up cooking this closer to an hour).
  • Serve directly from the skillet.

Ged√ľnstetes Sauerkraut--Steamed Spiced Sauerkraut


  • 2 LB plain sauerkraut
  • 1 TB shortening
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onions
  • 1 TB sugar
  • 5 juniper berries, 6 black peppercorns, 1/4 tsp caraway seeds and 1 clove ground together
  • 2 small bay leaves
  • 3 or 4 slices of bacon finely chopped
  • 1 large raw potato peeled


  • Drain the sauerkraut, wash it under cold running water.
  • A handful at a time, squeeze the sauerkraut vigorously until it is completely dry.
  • In a heavy 3 to 4 quart casserole or saucepan, melt the shortening over moderate heat.
  • Add the chopped onions and cook stirring frequently for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the onions are light brown.
  • Add the sauerkraut, sugar and 2 cups of water and mix together thoroughly, separating the strands of sauerkraut with a fork.
  • Add the spices and the bacon.
  • Bring to a boil over high heat and then cook undisturbed for 20 minutes.
  • Grate the raw potato directly into the sauerkraut mixture. Cover the casserole tightly and cook over low heat for about an hour until the sauerkraut has absorbed most of its cooking liquid.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Kitsune Udon

Kitsune udon are Japanese udon noodles with seasoned tofu pouches which are generally used for inari--tofu pouches filled with sushi rice.

Seasoned Fried Tofu Pouches

  • 2 or 3 fried tofu pouches (you can buy these at an Asian market that stock Japanese products)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon dashi powder
  • 1 TB sugar
  • 2 tsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tsp mirin
  • Blanch tofu pouches 2 minutes in boiling water to remove excess oil
  • Press underwater several times with a fork.
  • Drain; cool slightly.
  • Squeeze out excess liquid.
  • In a small saucepan, combine 3/4 cup water, dashi powder, sugar, soy sauce and mirin over medium high heat until simmering.
  • Add tofu pouches; cook 3 to 10 minutes, turning them several times.
  • Most of seasoning liquid with evaporate.
  • Cool; squeeze dry if too moist.
  • Cut open on 3 sides.
  • Unfold tofu pouches and slice into 2 to 3 inch julienne strips.
Savory Noodle Broth Ingredients: Directions:
  • In a large saucepan, combine stock, salt, soy sauce, sugar and mirin.
  • Heat until hot but not boiling; remove from heat.
  • to serve pour 1 cup broth over noodles in each serving bowl.
  • Makes 2 quarts.
Kitsune Udon

  • 4 seasoned fried tofu pouches
  • 8 pieces of fish cake
  • 1/2 recipe savory noodles broth (above)
  • 3/4 lb dried white wheat noodles, or 4 small packages of fresh udon (we prefer these for their plumpness)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 bunch green onions thinly slice
  • Other condiments of choice: nori cut in matchsticks and pickled beansprouts

Clockwise: nori cut in matchsticks, sliced green
pickled beansprouts
fish cake, and sliced inari pouches.

  • Prepare seasoned friend tofu pouches.
  • Slice fish cake into thin strips.
  • Prepare savory noodle broth, and keep warm over low heat.
  • If using dried noodles, in a large saucepan, bring 3 quarts water to a boil.
  • Slip noodles into boilin water, stirring once or twice.
  • When water returns to a rapid boil, cook noodles 10 to 12 minutes until tender.
  • drain noodles, min in sesame oil.
  • Divide noodles among 4 deep bowls.
  • Add tofu pouches, and a few strips of fish cake.
  • Pour about one cup of hot broth over each bowl of noodle mixture.
  • Serve with condiments.
  • If using fresh noodles warm them in the hot broth for a couple of minutes and then divide amongst serving bowls.

Primary and Secondary Bonito Stock for Japanese Noodles

Kelp and Bonito Flakes Steeping in Hot Water for
Secondary Bonito Stock

Primary Bonito Stock


  • 1 5" piece of dried kelp (dashi konbu)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup dried bonito shavings


  • Lightly wipe the dried kept with a damp cloth.
  • Make 2 or 3 slits in it with a small knife.
  • In a medium saucepan, place kelp and water over medium low heat.
  • Heat slowly 8 to 10 minutes or until water reaches simmering point.
  • Do not allow water and kelp to boil at any time or stock will become bitter.
  • Remove kelp; let water come to a full boil.
  • Add bonito shavings and remove pan from heat.
  • Let shaving settle to bottom of pan.
  • After 2 to 3 minutes, strain stock through 2 layers of dampened cheesecloth or a fine strainer.
  • Use stock immediately or refrigerate up to 2 days.
  • Reserve Kelp and bonito flakes for secondary bonito stock.

Secondary Bonito Stock


  • Strained bonito shavings and kelp from Primary Bonito Stock.
  • 3 1/4 cups water
  • Additional 1/4 cup dried bonito shavings


  • In a medium saucepan, heat strained bonito shavings, kelp and water over medium heat.
  • When water is hot, remove pan from heat; steep 30 minutes.
  • After steeping, slowly bring to a boil over medium high heat.
  • When water boils, add additional bonito shavings.
  • Remove pan from heat.
  • Let shavings settle to bottom of pan.
  • After 4 to 5 minutes, strain stock through 3 layers of dampened cheesecloth or a fine strainer.
  • Use stock immediately or refrigerate up to 2 days.
  • Remaining piece of kelp can be added to braised dishes or stews for enrichment.
  • Makes about 3 cups.

Friday, September 18, 2009


Small slices and chunks of vegetables in tempura

  • Your choice of vegetables thinly sliced or cut into small chunks. I used sweet potato, mushrooms, and okra.
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 cups of ice cold water
  • 1 1/2 cups of flour
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Whisk together the egg yolk and the ice cold water.
  • Add the flour and gently whisk, leaving lumps in the batter.
  • Heat the oil. I always use the bread test, so heat it until a piece of bread turns brown and floats pretty quick (how scientific is that?)
  • Add vegetables in batches, fry for a couple of minutes.
  • Heat the oven to 250 degrees and put a jelly roll pan with a wire rack in the oven and add the batches as they cook, so they don't get cold and soggy.

Serve with Tempura sauce


  • 1/3 cup light soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp dashi granules (instant fish stock, I get mine at an Asian market)
  • 1/4 cup mirin

  • Combine ingredients in a bowl, whisking the dashi into the wet ingredients.
  • Serve at room temperature.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sticky Pecan Buns

I'm still trying to come up with ways to use all the pecans we got from our friend Gil who has pecan trees growing in his yard, I have a feeling I'll still have pecans when we get the next batch from him.

  • Butter a 9 x 12 pan
  • Spread about 1/4 " honey on the bottom
  • Roll the dough into a 9 x 12 rectangle.
  • Spread with melted butter and sprinkle heavily with cinnamon.
  • Spread the nuts evenly over the dough.
  • Roll the dough up and cut into 9 pieces about 1" thick, and place them cut side down in the honey lined pan.
  • Let rise until double.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes.
  • Let cool in the pan for a couple of minutes and then turn out to complete cooling.

I used a cookie sheet, which I placed on top of the sticky bun pan, and flipped it over and let the buns land on top of the cookie sheet, so that the honey side would be up.

Basic Coffeecake Dough


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 TB sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup hot milk
  • 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • grated orange peel
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 4-5 cups flour


  • Place the butter, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl.
  • Pour the hot milk over it and let it cool to lukewarm.
  • Meanwhile, mix together the yeast, sugar, cinnamon and warm water in a certamic bowl and place in a warm place until it bubbles vigorously:

  • Add eggs and egg yolks to the milk mixture and beat well.
  • Grate the orange directly into the bowl so no aromatic oils are lost.
  • Add 1 cup flour, mixing well; add the yeast.
  • Continue adding flour until you have a smooth, medium soft dough that is shiny and elastic.
  • Knead until it cleans the sides of the bowl.
  • Cover with a towel and place in a warm place to rise, abut an hour and a half.
  • This amount makes 2 9x5 loaves.
  • Use any filling and then let rise again until double, about half an hour.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Ramen with Broiled Pork and Mushroom

Ingredients: Condiments:
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced
  • 1 sheet nori cut into matchsticks
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • hot chili oil
  • soy sauce
  • Heat broth in a stockpot to nearly a boil, lower heat and gently slide 2 eggs into the broth, cover and let cook for 5 minutes (this results in a very soft yolk, cook longer for a harder yolk)
  • Layer the bottom of each bowl (2) with ramen noodles.
  • Next add sliced pork and mushrooms
  • Using a ladle scoop an egg into each bowl
  • Ladle broth over noodles
  • Serve with condiments on the side

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Powdered Cocoa Brownies

These are a quick brownie that can be made with simple pantry ingredients and eggs.

  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Blend oil, sugar and vanilla in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add eggs, mix well using a spoon.
  • In another bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; gradually blend into the egg mixture.
  • Spread into a greased 9 inch square pan.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
  • Cool completely in pan.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Vegetarian Broth for Ramen Noodles


  • 4 Spring onions
  • 2 1/2 inch piece of fresh root ginger, quartered
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 Large Carrot
  • 6-8 dried mushrooms
  • 6 TB miso (any color)
  • 2 TB shoyu


  • Bruise the spring onions and ginger.
  • Boil 9 cups of water, and add all stock ingredients except for the miso and shoyu.
  • Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 2 hours.
  • Strain into a bowl.
  • Scoop for Tb of soup stock from the pot and mix well with the miso and shoyu in a bowl.
  • Stir back into the soup.
  • Reduce the heat to low until ready to serve.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Spicy Indoneasian noodles

I made these noodles from scratch Thursday morning, using whole wheat flour instead of white flour, to make a Chinese style noodle. Other than the change in flour I used my usual method.
The whole wheat made a chewier noodle that was odd at first, but pretty tasty as I got used to it.

  • 3 stalks of lemongrass (I picked mine straight out of the garden!), finely chopped
  • 2 fresh chilies, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 batch fresh noodles cooked in boiling water
  • 3 TB oil
  • 3 green onions sliced
  • 1/2 lb. ground beef
  • 2 inch piece ginger, grated
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 2 TB roughly chopped peanuts

  • Grind together the lemongrass, red chilies, garlic, cloves and coriander seeds using a mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder to make a paste. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the brown sugar, curry paste, and ground cinnamon.
  • Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet.
  • Add the green onions and cook until soft.
  • Add the ginger and stir-fry for one minute.
  • Add the spice paste and stir-fry until fragrant.
  • Add the lime juice and noodles and cook for 4 or 5 minutes.
  • Serve with chopped peanuts, fish sauce and/or soy sauce, and lime juice on the side.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Breakfast Bruschetta with Prosciutto, Poached Eggs, and Warm Mustard Vinaigrette

I found this recipe online this morning and it sounded so yummy I had to try it.

I substituted challah for the sour dough, and made my own vinaigrette, since I didn't have all the ingredients called for in the house. The rosemary gave the bread a nice little kick.

And for once my poached eggs turned out decent!

Mustard Vinaigrette


1 tsp brown mustard
2 TB white wine vinegar
pinch of salt
1 to 1 1/2 tsp small dice, white part, scallions
1/4 cup plus 2 TB extra virgin olive oil.
2 tsp hot water
1/4 tsp sugar


Combine ingredients in a jar, screw on the lid, and shake well to combine.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Two kinds of Granita and Tea Cookies


Coffee Granita

  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup very strong espresso coffee, cooled


  • Heat the water and sugar together over low heat until the sugar dissolves.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  • Combine the coffee with the sugar syrup.
  • Place in a shallow container or freezer tray, and freeze until solid.
  • Plunge the bottom of the frozen container or tray in very hot water for a few seconds.
  • Turn the frozen mixture out and chop it into large chunks.
  • Place the mixture in a food processor fitted with metal blades and process until it forms small crystals.
  • Spoon into serving glasses.

For Lemon Granita substitute 7-8 TB lemon juice
for the coffee.

Tea Cookies


  • 10 TB butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup confectioners sugar, sifted
  • 1 egg beaten
  • a few drops almond extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • candied orange peel


  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  • Cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, then beat the egg, almond extract and flour until evenly mixed.
  • Spoon the mixture into a piping bag fitted with a nozzle and pipe 10 rosette shapes on each of the bakin sheets, if you don't want to pipe the mixture, simply spoon it onto the baking paper and press it down with a fork.
  • Cut the candied peel into small diamond shapes and press one diamond into the center of each cookie to decorate.
  • Bake for 5 minutes or until golden.
  • Transfer the cookies on to a wire rack and let cool.