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Announcement: Saturday, September 6, 2020: Roast Chicken with Homegrown Mashed Potatoes
Sep 20th, 2020 by Max Koster

Tonight Alex and I wanted to try to recreate one of our favorite meals from Trader Joes: Lemon-Rosemary Marinated Chicken and finally cook the potatoes from our garden (we also harvested rosemary from the garden for the chicken).  Ingredients are simple: for the chicken, you need: melted butter, rosemary and lemon; for the potatoes, add butter and milk (or cream if you have it.)

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First step was to wash the chicken and make sure there was nothing in there (sometimes giblets/livers are in there) so after I got the chicken out of its plastic covering…harder than it looks, I put on my gloves to clean and wash the chicken.  (And there were giblets in there…took those out). Not a fan.

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Then it was time to chop the rosemary, melt the butter, squeeze lemon into the butter and add salt and pepper. Alex helped out with the lemon and finishing up the basting sauce.

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Then it was time to baste the chicken all over with the lemon-rosemary-butter mix.  Alex handled that while I started peeling potatoes.

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We both ended up peeling the potatoes, and then put them in a pot of water to wait to cook.  The chicken had to cook for at least an hour so we didn’t want to start them to early.

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After the chicken had cooked 30 minutes, we started the potatoes and when they were fork tender, I started to mash them, with butter, salt, pepper and cream.

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After about an hour, the chicken was done so we served it up with the mashed potatoes. Mom made a quick arugula tomato salad with tomatoes and avocado to round out the plate.

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Everything was delicious, however, I think we should have marinated the chicken in olive oil, rosemary, and lemon before we cooked it.  Our version tasted good but didn’t have quite the same flavor as Trader Joes.

 

Announcement: August 10, 2020: More Homegrown Treats: Simple Bruschetta, Zucchini Taste Test
Aug 21st, 2020 by Max Koster

Welcome to kidscookdinner.com.  We have been focusing on food from our garden–like many of you we have a lot of tomatoes and a lot of zucchini.  Today I am trying to use up some tomatoes: by making a quick batch of bruschetta.  This is easy because you don’t have to chop anything.  You just need tomatoes, olive oil, a clove of garlic, basil and some crusty bread.  The tomatoes and basil came from our garden.   We also grew some very light colored zucchini so we did a taste test against our usual dark green version.

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First step for the bruschetta: grate the tomato using the box grater:

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Once you have a good amount of grated tomato, add a little olive oil and salt and pepper.  Then slice the bread and put it in the toaster.

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Once the bread is toasted, cut the clove of garlic in half and rub the cut side on the toasted bread.

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Then spoon the tomato-olive oil mix over the bread and add some basil leaves

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Finally, time to taste!

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For the zucchini taste test, I decided to slice and roast the two squashes.

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(There was extra room in the pan so I added some tomatoes and mushrooms.) Once everything was roasted, I tasted the squash (and served the other roasted vegetables with cheese ravioli).  Honestly, I didn’t like the light green squash….it was almost tasteless but good to know.

 

 

July 27 – July 31, 2020: Week of Homegrown Food
Aug 6th, 2020 by Max Koster

Welcome to kidscookdinner.com.  To learn more about the history of this website, scroll down a few posts.  Otherwise, if you want to know what my sister and I have been cooking: stay right here.

This week I (Max) wanted to try to incorporate something from our garden into at least one meal a day.    Our garden is doing pretty well: we had a lot of peas early on (they’re done now), and now zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, and potatoes are in season.  None of our sunflowers made it (the birds ate the seeds as soon as we planted them); only a few of our zinnias bloomed, and only one kale plant survived.  (I am saving that for mom.)

Monday, July 27, 2020

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Today’s yield from the garden was mainly cucumbers and tomatoes, so I incorporated them into a tomato-cucumber salad to go along with souvlaki style chicken, pita bread, and rice.

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Tuesday, July 28, 2020

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We picked a full basket (almost everything in the garden made it in the basket), so I used the lettuce and tomato in a salad with goat cheese, the cucumbers in a separate salad and baked the potatoes (and served that all with steak sandwiches.)

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After dinner, I decided to use up some of our zucchini to make zucchini bread: so delicious!

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Wednesday, July 29, 2020

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Today’s yield was a lot of tomatoes, basil and (of course, more zucchini and cucumbers) so I decided to make a tomato-mozzarella-basil salad.

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Thursday, July 30, 2020

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Today’s yield was a lot of lettuce and a few zinnias.  However, we had zucchini and basil leftover so I decided to make a zucchini-basil frittata.  This is pretty easy.  You just sautee garlic, thinly sliced zucchini, and basil in olive oil till zucchini slightly soft.  Then pour in 8 beaten eggs.  Cook till eggs are set, sprinkle grated parmesan cheese on top and broil until golden brown.  (This is a family favorite.)

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Friday, July 31, 2020

Today’s yield was mainly tomatoes (and very hot peppers) so I decided to make an arugula, tomato, and corn salad.  The peppers are way too hot to put in the salad!

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Friday, June 27, 2020: Baked Banana Berry Oatmeal
Jul 3rd, 2020 by Max Koster

Welcome to kidscookdinner.com.  Today I (Max) wanted to make something healthy for breakfast that I could also snack on for a couple of days, so I decided to make Baked Banana Berry Oatmeal.  It’s easy to make but does have a fair number of ingredients, including butter, milk, eggs, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, vanilla, maple syrup, oats, bananas, blueberries and walnuts.

Instead of writing about the process,  however, I made a video: watch it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pHYRnfRV_1I

And here’s a still from the video of the final product. Enjoy!

Oatmeal

Saturday, June 20, 2020: Slow Cooked Pork Shoulder
Jun 30th, 2020 by Max Koster

Welcome to kidscoodinner.com, a website my sister and I started 5 years ago (read more about that a few posts below) For dinner tonight (Saturday), I wanted to cook a big piece of pork (pork shoulder) but it’s been really hot so I decided to cook it the day before in a slow cooker, let it sit overnight (so all the fat that cooks out hardens so its easier to remove).  Ingredients are simple: pork, of course; bunch of spices for the dry rub; ketchup, and apple cider vinegar.  You can also add your favorite barbecue sauce to the slow cooker, or just add at the end when you serving the pork.

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First step is to make the dry rub: I combined: onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, oregano and salt and pepper. If you want it spicier, add cayenne.

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Then you rub it over the pork.

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Into the slow cooker the pork goes, then mix the ketchup and apple cider vinegar together (should be about a cup of liquid) and add around the pork.  (I added a little barbecue sauce as well), and let cook on low for 8 hours.

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Here’s what it looked like about 4 hours in:

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Once it’s cooked for 8 hours, it should be very tender. Let it cool for a bit, then remove the pork from the pot, cut the strings keeping it together (discard strings!) and shred it with a fork. I put the shredded meat in a separate bowl and refrigerate it overnight.  I also refrigerated the slow cooker pot with the liquid in it (which had a lot of fat in it), overnight.

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In the morning, there was over 1/4 inch of solidified orange fat on top of the cooking liquid.  It was actually fun to cut it off….but there was a lot of it.

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Here’s the plate of fat I removed.

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And here’s what the remaining sauce looked like:

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I added back the shredded pork and warmed everything up for an hour or so before serving.

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Mom made fresh rolls to go with the meat:

fresh rolls  SlowCookedPorkPlated

Delicious! And lots of leftovers.

Monday, June 15, 2020: Strawberry Pie and More
Jun 16th, 2020 by Max Koster

Welcome to kidscookdinner.com.  To find out more about this website, and my sister’s and my cooking adventures, scroll down a couple of posts.  To learn about we’re cooking now….just keep reading.

This past Saturday we went strawberry picking at a nearby organic berry farm called Thompson Finch.  We wore masks and practiced social distancing and picked 15 pounds of amazing berries. As soon as we got home we made Joe’s shortcakes to go with the strawberries, but we can’t share that recipe because it’s, well, Joe’s recipe.  But they are sweet, moist biscuits (and really good with strawberries and whipped cream.)  (Sometimes they are for sale at Thompson Finch Farm).

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Today, however, I wanted to make a family favorite: strawberry pie.  My mom usually makes it this time of year but I wanted to try myself.  It’s actually really easy.  You need 5 to 6 cups of strawberries, water, corn starch, pre-made graham cracker crust, and sugar.  (You can make the graham cracker crust from scratch but we had one in the cupboard and I still have school, so I chose to use the pre-made one).

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First step is to wash and hull the strawberries.  (Hull means to chop off the green leaves and stem).  About 1 cup needs to be set aside to make the strawberry sauce; the rest will go in the pie crust.

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Before I took out the plastic liner from the pie crust, I checked to make sure I had enough berries to fill the pan.  Then I mashed up the other cup to make the sauce.

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Next step was to combine the mashed up strawberries with sugar and bring to a light boil.

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Then, mix cornstarch and water, add to the strawberry mix, and drizzle over the berries in the pie pan.

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Finally, you put all the berries and all the sauce in the pie pan and refrigerate for a couple hours.

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After dinner, it was ready to eat.  Alex made sweet cream ice cream so I served it with that. Delicious!20200615_203231  20200615_203516

 

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