December 1, 2019: Beef Stew with Mushrooms and Egg Noodles
Dec 29th, 2019 by Katekoster

December came in with a cold blast and I (Max) decided to counter it with a hearty beef stew with mushrooms, served over egg noodles.  I used the crock pot so I didn’t have to worry about a pot on a stove all day.  Ingredients were pretty simple: beef, carrots, onions, garlic, mushrooms, beef broth and noodles (if you aren’t serving this over noodles then you can put potatoes in the stew.)


First step was to chop up the beef (because some of the pieces were really big).


Next was the onions, carrots, and garlic and yes, I needed goggles to chop the onions.

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Then I sauteed the beef, removed it from the pan and sauteed the onions and carrots.  (Sauteeing stuff gives it a bit more flavor before you add to the crock pot)

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Then I added all this stuff to the crock pot with beef stock (I didn’t add the mushrooms yet because the beef and veggies need to cook a while before the mushrooms…otherwise the mushrooms turn to mush)

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After 4 hours (on high), I sauteed the mushrooms and added them in for half an hour.  Once the mushrooms were in the crockpot,  I started cooking the egg noodles.

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Once the noodles were done, I plated the dish…

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Sunday, November 24, 2019: Back to the Basics: Healthy Chicken Parm
Dec 1st, 2019 by Katekoster

So I (Max) will be the first to admit I have not been cooking as much as I would like to.  However, I am re-dedicating myself to perfecting my favorite meals (and trying a few new ones) so I can survive on my own in college. I know there will probably be a college cafeteria, but who knows how good the food will be? And I really like good food. So first up: healthy chicken parm.  What’s nice about this is that it really doesn’t take many ingredients (and only 3 fresh ingredients: chicken, tomatoes and mozzarella cheese).


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First step, prep the tomatoes: this is super easy, just wash the tomatoes, toss them in olive oil, put on a sheet pan with salt and pepper and they are ready to go in the oven at 375 degrees.  They will cook down (some will explode) and will make a super simple tomato sauce.


Seond step, make the chicken.  To do this, I set up a simple assembly line of chicken, bowl of olive oil, plate of panko bread crumbs and baking pan.  Then I dip the chicken in olive oil, bread it with the panko bread crumbs, and into the pan.  Then both the chicken and tomatoes go into the oven and cook for 15 minutes.  (Note you could cook the tomatoes and chicken on the same pan, if you needed to)

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After 15 minutes, I flip the chicken for over and then cook for another 5-10 minutes (checking one by cutting it in half to make sure not too pink).  Cooking time depends on how thick the chicken cutlets are.  Then I layered on slice of mozarella to just melt a bit.

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Meanwhile, I started water boiling and started cooking pasta, and also took out the tomatoes.  (I used dried papparedelle but you can use any type of pasta you want)

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Once the mozzarella has melted, it’s time to plate (and eat!)


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