Saturday, December 16, 2017

Corn Fritters

Last summer, I thought I'd like to try to make corn fritters.   I can remember thinking they were a lot of work for a weeknight dinner, and froze the leftovers individually on a cookie sheet, and then threw them in a bag.    I got them out the other night to have with some ham and they were FANTASTIC!  I forgot how good they were.   I heated them up on a cookie sheet in the oven for about 20 minutes on 350F.    I will make these every summer when the corn comes delicious.   I'll schedule making several batches on a weekend.    I found a recipe in America's Test Kitchen - modified to our taste.    Here is how I made them.   

4 ears corn, kernels cut from cobs (3 cups)
1 teaspoon plus 1/2 cup vegetable oil
Salt and pepper
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup finely minced chives
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 t.  cayenne pepper 
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Process 1 1/2 cups corn kernels in food processor to uniformly coarse puree, 15 to 20 seconds, scraping down sides of bowl halfway through processing. Set aside.  Heat 1 teaspoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add remaining 1 1/2 cups corn kernels and ⅛ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring frequently, until light golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to medium bowl.  Return skillet to medium heat, add corn puree, and cook, stirring frequently with heatproof spatula, until puree is consistency of thick oatmeal (puree clings to spatula rather than dripping off), about 5 minutes. Transfer puree to bowl with kernels and stir to combine. Rinse skillet and dry with paper towels.  Stir flour, 3 tablespoons chives, cornstarch, cayenne, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper into corn mixture until well combined. Gently stir in egg until incorporated.  Line rimmed baking sheet with paper towels. Heat remaining ½ cup oil in now-empty skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Drop six 2-tablespoon portions batter into skillet. Press with spatula to flatten into 2 1/2- to 3-inch disks. Fry until deep golden brown on both sides, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer fritters to prepared sheet. Repeat with remaining batter.   After they cool, put them in the freezer on a cookie sheet, and then in a ziplock bag.   Take out as many as you need for  dinner. 

Great taste of summer in winter!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Mom's Tasty Flank Steak

This recipe, like so many of my favorite recipes, come from my dear friend Ann.    She was my neighbor many years ago here in Ann Arbor, and she moved to upsate NY but we still talk every day, sometimes more than once.    I don't get to see her as often as I would like.....but we  are still as close friends as ever!    Some of my favorite recipes from her include her fabulous cheese dumplings  and her mother's layered cranberry salad And let's not forget the great upstate  NY taste treat spiedies, which I would have never known about if she didn't move to Vestal, NY.      Every night, we talk about what we are making for dinner...  she is making a recipe in her Instapot that we both love,  Mississippi Roast.  Tonight, I am making her mother in law's flank steak recipe, as it is my son's favorite and he just returned home for Thanksgiving break.    It's a keeper of a recipe!  So very good.....

Mom's Tasty Flank Steak

1/2 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. lemon juice - bottled is fine for this recipe
1 T. thyme
3 green onions, sliced

A big flank steak

Marinate the steak overnight in the refrigerator.     If you have a pressure cooker, this recipe works great in one.  Remove the flank steak, reserving marinade.  Heat some olive oil in the bottom of the cooker and brown the steak on both sides.   Add marinade, and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes.   Allow to naturally cool to remove lid.    If you don't have a pressure cooker, preheat the broiler and put the steak and marinade in a 13X9 pan and broil until the steak is cooked, about 10 minutes on each side. 

Serve steak sliced on the diagonal with plenty of marinade on top of egg noodles.    Delicious!

Good friends make for good recipes......

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Detroit Style City Chicken

City Chicken is a Polish dish that we had at virtually every holiday meal when I was a kid.  I have made it several times as an adult, using recipes I found on the internet, but I'm pretty sure my mother and grandmother never used Italian seasoned breadcrumbs or, God forbid, panko.    My memory is saltine cracker crumbs.   Also, my mother seasoned all pork and chicken with was her recipe secret weapon, along with Lipton French Onion Soup mix.   Traditionally, city chicken is made with equal parts pork and veal, which was cheaper than chicken when thrifty Hamtramck ladies made it, but veal was expensive in the 1970s so my mother rarely used it.   So yesterday, as a request from a friend who was looking for a recipe for city chicken, I set out to make it like my mom would have made it.   I did skip the French Onion soup mix; instead I went for chicken stock.  My mom used French Onion Soup mix in virtually every recipe she made....from meatloaf to stuffed cabbage to chip dip when the ladies came over for a card party. 

Detroit Style City Chicken
Makes 8 sticks

3 lb pork loin, cut into 1 inch pieces (or equal parts pork and veal)
1 t. salt
1 1/2 t. onion powder
1 1/2 t garlic powder
1 1/2 t sweet paprika
2 c. vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 T milk
1 c. flour
1 c. saltine cracker crumbs (put 28 crackers in a ziplock bag and smash them with a rolling pin)
1 can chicken broth

Mix salt, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika in a large bowl.  Add meat and toss to coat thoroughly.   Thread meat onto 8 6 inch skewers.   Preheat oven to 325 F.   In a large Dutch oven, heat oil to 350 F.   While oil and oven is heating, bread meat.   Beat eggs and milk in a shallow bowl.   In a second bowl, pour flour, and a 3rd bowl, the cracker crumbs.  Dip meat sticks in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs.

Once all meat is coated, brown in hot oil until golden.   Then place the skewers in a roasting pan like this

If you don't have one of these just like Babcia, you can use a 13x9 pan covered tightly with aluminum foil.  Pour half the can in chicken broth in the bottom, and bake in the oven for an hour.   Use the pan drippings mixed with a bit of flour and the remainder of your broth to make a pan gravy.    To quote Sharon Stachurski, Aux. President of the Polish Century Club in Sterling Heights, in her version of the recipe, "I usually plan on 1 for women and 2 for men…. I usually make a few extra just in case. Leftovers can be frozen for several months and reheated.   When making city chicken, I think it is better to make a large quantity and freeze some since they are so much work and mess to begin with…."  so maybe you want to make extra? Check out some other of their great Polish recipes here.

I think I will make this for Christmas.   Smaczne!