Monday, September 1, 2008

Ikea and a Potluck...two funny words

Shaun and I went to Ikea last weekend (looking for a new rug--no luck) and had a fun visit when Lindsay's dad came up Saturday night to visit. We were able to show off our sweet new pad and chat. He left Sunday...and forgot his pillow. We hope he can have it back soon--but that requires a visit. (You'll see from his picture that he LOVES taking photos.)

Then yesterday, we had a joined in the Booth's Sunday potluck. We brought chili and chocolate chip/walnut cookies. We got great reviews on the chili---and, we are providing the recipes. Please note that we made up the chili and the exact measurements are unknown. (But I think it's pretty close.)

Saute in large pot over medium-high heat:
1 T olive oil
1 medium onion
3 cloves of garlic
1 medium green bell pepper
1 small can (4 oz. ?) of mild green chilies
Season with salt and pepper.

After they have cooked a bit (don't over cook--keep a little crisp---it will have PLENTY of time to simmer in the chili), add:
1.5 pounds of lean ground turkey (raw)
1 T cumin
1 t red pepper flakes
1 t oregano
4 shakes of worshtershire
4 shakes of Chalula Hot Sauce (has wooden cap and a woman on front of bottle)
1 T chopped fresh cilantro
More salt and pepper to taste

Break up ground turkey with a spatula. When turkey has finished cooking, add (do not drain canned items, allow juices to go into pot):
1 12 oz. can Black beans
1 12 oz. can White beans
1 12 oz. can Northern beans
1 12 oz can Butter beans
1 12 oz. can Kidney beans
1 12 can diced tomatoes
1 12 oz. can tomato sauce

Mix everything together. Add any additional salt and pepper you would like. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to simmer for about 30-45 minutes. Then turn off heat. Add:
1 cup of chopped cilantro

Allow to sit and cool. If not serving for a while, you will want to refrigerate to avoid any risk of bacteria or germs from growing. (Since the beans are already cooked--too much heating may end up overcooking. By turning off the heat, you allow the flavors to still marry without turning everything to mush.) Reheat on stove before serving. I found that serving it at a warm temperature, that wasn't BOILING hot--allowed for the flavors to be tasted better and didn't burn any tongues.

So, there's the turkey chili!Now, the cookie recipe is from Pam Dickey's cookbook at the Bellingham institute. They are called, "Best-Ever Chocolate Chip Cookie." I have added walnuts to the recipe.

Best-Ever Chocolate Chip Cookie
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a big bowl, cream together:
1 c of softened butter
3/4 c white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 t vanilla

In a separate smaller bowl, blend:
3 c flour
3/4 t salt
3/4 t baking soda

Add flour mixture slowly to the butter mixture until completely blended. Add:
12 oz bag of chocolate chips (or a little more if you like)
3/4 c walnuts

Mix well. Then drop the batter in small balls onto GREASED cookie sheet. Bake for 13 minutes. (Original recipe says 8-10 minutes.) Allow to cool for about 1 minute on cookie sheet. Then transfer to wire cooling rack. Enjoy. Best if eaten warm.

Note: Do not over cook or will become hard shortly after cooling.

Happy cooking and baking....'til next time!!!

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