Sophie's Foodie

Sophie's Foodie

0 comment Friday, April 18, 2014 |


This can't be cast as one of those all exclusive "red-neck" BBQ recipes, but, hey a good chicken noodle soup is vital! First though, this very important quiz!........
Who invented Chicken Noodle Soup?
Martin Short ___
Martha Stewart___
Genghis Khan___
Bambi___
Who Knows?___
Last Chance Answer! - Donald Trump___
In my research, I couldn't come up with a definite answer, but the guess is, it is a derivative of a Chinese noodle soup.
My variation of chicken noodle soup is really thick and falls into the category of being a "stoup", a phrase coined by Rachael Ray (On one of her 30 minute meal shows, but this is not her recipe) for being so thick that it is a cross between being a stew and a soup�.thus, stoup!
  • Quarter cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • One large onion
  • One clove of garlic
  • Two large carrots
  • Two stalks of celery
  • One roasted Anaheim pepper (optional)
  • Three or four large chicken breasts
  • Wild Willy's Number One-derful Rub Recipe
  • Ah, the el twisto, Luzianne Cajun Seasoning
  • 22 ounce package of large egg noodles
  • Six 14 oz cans of low sodium chicken broth
  • One to two 14 oz cans of low sodium beef broth
    Get your grill up, or you, to 400 degrees or more. In the meanwhile, coat each chicken breast with a little olive oil and put on a generous amount of Wild Willy's rub onto each of the breasts. You can pan fry or grill each chicken breast on the barbie until done. I prefer the BBQ. (Besides this is a BBQ blog).
    I use a 6 � quart stock pot for my chicken noodle soup. Finely chop up the onion and garlic and caramelize in the olive oil until you get a nice brown coating.
    Dice up the carrots (not you!), and celery and add them to the pot, sauté them for seven minutes, or so.
    Add one can of beef broth to the veggie mix and reduce the heat. I like to cook everything separately, so I add two thirds of a package of egg noodles to boiling water and cook for seven minutes. Add a little olive oil to water to keep the noodles from sticking.
    Add the beef broth and four cans of the chicken broth to the pot. Add rinsed noodles, bring up the heat, but don't boil. Cut up chicken into bite size chunks and add to pot.
    You say," why not just cook the chicken in the broth, dude"?
    For one, it will reduce the chicken chunks to minuscule size. Ok, with that I really doubt that I am making an impression! Open a can of chicken noodle soup and compare the size of the chicken chunks to yours. The result is what happens when you boil chicken and cut corners.
    You don't have to cook the noodles separately either, but I don't do starchy noodles....do you really love that darling starchy taste?
    The toughest part is the spice part. The noodles will make it a bland. This is where the Cajun Seasoning comes in. Shake it on the finished product, stir, taste, and shake it on some more until you get rid of the blandness.
    Now, you are going to have some different tastes in your soup and that's cool! The caramelized onion and garlic add a wonderful taste to soup. You will receive yet another great and separate taste with the barbecued chicken because of the rub. The nice spicy taste will come from the Cajun Seasoning. I also add a roasted Anaheim pepper, but that's optional.
    Remember that chicken noodle soup is good for the soul�.and well, you too! This is just one in a number of recipes that I hope you enjoy!
    "Wild Willy's Number One-derful Rub Recipe" (Courtesy of Cheryl Jamison�. She has one of the best barbecue books out there, and I can't recommend it enough, or highly enough�.."Spice & Smoke")
  • Main all-purpose rub, good on pork & beef rib, brisket, chicken, and more ("And More" Meaning Pulled Pork, Steak, Hamburger).
  • 3/4 cup paprika
  • 1/4 cup ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup salt (Try to use Sea salt)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne
  • What could make this chicken noodle soup recipe better? Well, you could add more veggies, maybe even double up on the carrots and celery.

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    0 comment Thursday, April 17, 2014 |
    Gas grills are a way to go if you are looking for convenience and versatility, this will especially include the Ducane 4100.
    The Weber barbecue folks acquired Ducane not to long ago, and nothing has dropped off in quality from the Ducane quality of years past. The unit is heavy stainless-steel with four fast-heating burners and an abundance of grill area.
    Not only is it a handsome looking BBQ, it has a totally enclosed storage area for your tools and the propane tank.
    Temperatures can rise to 600 degrees and is perfect for searing those steaks to perfection immediately after work. The unit is ideal when grilling for large crowds.
  • Outdoor gas grill with 4 stainless steel burners
  • 48,000 BTUs for high temperatures and 693 square inches of total cooking space
  • 167 square inch warming rack
  • Electronic ignition and professional-grade lid thermometer
  • Stainless steel wire cooking grates for easy cleanup
  • 5- year limited warranty
  • Priced in the $400.00 range
  • Most folks think you have to spend $1000, plus to get a quality gas grill. Not long ago that was true. But, with the Ducane 4100 you get a durable, quality grill for less than half of that.

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    0 comment |

    I have many vegan friends. And, I don't like to disappoint them. Grilled vegetables are at the top of the chart for them, and for my family. Cooking vegetables outdoors brings in a taste that cannot be duplicated, and a simple recipe is hard to beat.
    Many BBQ sites feature only ways to barbecue meat. Hey, that's fine. But, how about considering the total meal experience. Grilling vegetables, fruits and desserts is part of that experience.
    I have mentioned Chef George Hirsch in other blog posts. He was grilling vegetables, and was involved in the total meal experience, long before it was fashionable on the food channels, and before many of them hit puberty.
    He grilled on a Charbroil Gas BBQ, with a modified cast iron grill, every Saturday on Public TV. Pretty sure it was the late eighties or early nineties. Now days, he publishes a free newsletter that I subscribe to and you should look into it, too.
    Anyway for this post, I grilled a combination of fresh Roma tomatoes, zucchini, red and yellow peppers, asparagus and mushrooms. Get a whole bunch of each. The basic recipe is out of an old Family Circle magazine, and I will admit I took a whole lot of liberties with the recipe.
    Number one: they wanted you to make a Marinara-based dipping sauce, adding onion, vinegar, Italian Seasoning and sweet roasted red peppers. I didn't bother with it.
    I like the taste of grilled veggies just the way they come off the grill. You don't need to plunk anything on top of them, or dip them into anything. But, your tastes may be different than mine.
    Get yourself a great big bowl...."Martha Stewart-recommended size". Cut up the peppers and zucchini length-wise. Halve or quarter up the tomatoes. Slice up the mushrooms. Remove stems from the asparagus.
    Pour on, and toss all the veggies in Extra Virgin Olive Oil. I also drizzled on a Balsamic Vinegar. It's a super marinade and adds an awesome taste. Marinate things for about an hour or so.
    I brought the gas grill up to about 400 degrees. I grilled the asparagus and zucchini on one side of the grill and put the remaining vegetables into a grill-top chef's pan. This way I don't lose any veggies through the grill.
    The asparagus and zucchini should take only about five, six minutes per side. Put everything else in the basket except the tomatoes. Put them in at the last minute or they will turn to mush.

    Toss the pan of veggies until done. It's an eyeball thing.
    The first night we ate the grilled vegetables by themselves. The second time we put them into a wrap. Both experiences were, well, just outstanding. My wife told me that the wrap thing was a notch up, though. Are you catching on?
    And, hey, you can always add something to the mixed veggies for the next meal. For the meat eaters, you could add thinly-sliced steak one day, chicken the next. Use your noggin!
    Ok! You have no excuse now but to fire up the barbie and fix this simple recipe for grilled vegetables outdoors.

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    0 comment Wednesday, April 16, 2014 |

    I know this is basically a BBQ blog, but I also like to include cooking and grilling once in a while. And, my goal is to pass on cool recipes as I make them and this is a fish & seafood chowder one.
    One of the basic ingredients in this recipe is leeks. Some of the traditional leek recipes I don't particuliary care for, but this one is super.
    So, let's bag traditional and use leeks in an exciting chowder, along with hard body fish, shrimp, Andouille sausage and lots of veggies.
    The Andouille sausage is where the grilling comes in. In fact, there is no reason you couldn't do this whole recipe on the barbecue grill. The Andouille adds tons of unique flavor, spice and a little "hot".
  • 2 pounds of red potatoes
  • 3 cloves of finely chopped garlic
  • 3 stalks of celery halved and cut into bite size chunks
  • 3 large carrots sliced
  • 3 to 4 leeks cut length-wise and into small bite size chunks
  • 2 14 oz cans of diced tomatoes
  • 4 14 oz cans of low sodium chicken broth
  • 6 Andouille Sausages
  • � pound of Tiger Shrimp peeled and deveined
  • 2 lbs of Cod, Salmon or whatever (Best half frozen)
  • Emeril's Original Essence (See Bottom Of Page)
  • Old Bay Seasoning (See Bottom Of Page)
  • EVOO
  • When I make a soup, or a chowder like this, I don't like to take shortcuts and cook everything together in a big pot. My way takes time, but I find that a soup, stew, chowder or whatever comes out much better than if I did the all-in-one thing.
    Hope you are not in a hurry!
    For best results, nuke or bake the potatoes ahead of time and put them in the refrigerator overnight. This allows them to firm up. Next, cut them up into bite size chunks, and in a separate skillet brown them up in EVOO. Sprinkle with Essence and set aside.
    Cut the half frozen fish into bite size chunks. Sprinkle with Old Bay and fry. Cook the shrimpies. Set aside.
    Grill the Andouille on the barbie whole, or broil in the oven over a drip pan. Cut into bite size chunks. Set aside.
    Now, it's pot time! I have an 8 � quart pot that's just about right. I can use it on the grill (My Traeger Grill), or the stovetop, whatever is convenient. However, things just kind of taste better when cooked outside.
    Chop your garlic and cover it with enough olive oil so that you can caramelize it. In other words, you want a nice golden brown touch to the garlic. Before it is fully cooked, add the carrots, celery and leeks. Cook for about six or seven minutes until the leeks soften up.
    Add the diced tomatoes, along with their juices, potatoes, Andouille and two cans of chicken broth. Heat up to temperature, but don't boil the nutrients out.
    I prefer not to add the fish or the shrimp to the pot that way I don't have to worry about spoilage. As you serve it, add the fish and shrimp to the bottom of a soup bowl and pour the stock over the top just prior to serving. You'll discover that even if you didn't add fish or shrimp it would still be a delicious chowder.

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    0 comment |
    Ladies and gentlemen, boys and deem girls, step right up....get your handy, dandy, and I mean deem super duper hamburger presses today! Hey, a millions sold, mon. You ain't going to find deem in any stores. Get your credit card ready, mon, for a big surpise!
    Now, mon, only if you call within the next five minutes, I'll not only send you one, but ten of deem suckers (I mean) deem phenomenal hamburger presses that will make your hamburger patties look and taste like they are right out of Chef Ripuoff''s Exclusive Smokin'/Greasy Burger Joint! Hey, Their Motto, mon: "We Make Deem More Greasy Than You Can Ever Imagine, Mon!"
    Get Real...Make Your Own Homemade Hamburger Press: If you are really concerned about uniformity and making your patties look great, phenomenal, maybe like Martha's, simply take the old lid off of a gallon-size jar of mayo. Maybe buy a gallon of mayo. Geez, how hard can all of this be? Have you got out of bed yet?
    For The Dumbies: Put a little non-stick or olive oil in the lid, and loosely pack it with ground meat. Level it off and plop the patty onto some 6 x 6 parchment paper, a plate, or wax paper.
    The gallon-size lids are the perfect size. Once again, don't squish anything. You might even want to work with ground meat that is real, real cold, or half frozen. It will be easier to work with. Beats most hamburger presses to pieces.
    Don't buy crappy hamburger unless you are into eating crappy hamburger. Get serious, make your own hamburger, mon. It's easier and a lot more healthful than you think.

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    0 comment Tuesday, April 15, 2014 |
    A short little review about a very cool charcoal grill ..... the Weber Performer Grill.
    This grill is beautifully designed, well-built unit. It will help you get your BBQ'ing up-to-speed right away, Best of all, help you get that BBQ'ing finger-licking- good.
    This is a very easy to use outdoor charcoal barbecue grill. The Weber folks have listened to what folks want in a BBQ, and have manufactured a superb grill.
    Charcoal can be one of the best ways to make your Q taste just like the pros....and, Weber has made charcoal easy to use in their Performer Grill.
    The Weber Performer Grill is designed to take away all those hassles of dealing with that hard-lighting charcoal. One of the biggest hassles associated with charcoal.
    It has a built-in propane lighter to get the charcoal going...so you don't have to be fussing around with it. And, cleaning up the ashes afterwards is a piece of cake. No more getting your hands dirty.....save that for when you are putting the rub on.
    The Weber Performer comes with a built in table so that you don't have to be running back and forth to the kitchen. You'll be able to stay outside and enjoy the weather, sip on your favorite beverage, listen to some jazz and blues, while you're trimming up and getting the meat ready to barbecue.
    What more could you ask for? Are you startin' to relax yet? Are you startin' to feel it?
    Do you like to barbecue all year around? Live in a cold and damp climate? The Weber Performer Grill is built for it.

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    0 comment |

    My family and I love Jambalaya. We also love Gumbo. In fact, we love a lot of Cajun-style food. Here is a simple recipe for Jambalaya, and since it is BBQ season why not just go ahead and use the barbie?
    This isn't a made from scratch recipe. I often wondered exactly what that meant. Do you grow your own rice, or what?
    I don't want to shock anyone, but I used a Zatarain's pre-packaged product, along with Kielbasa, chicken and a red pepper to make my Jambalaya. Not to mention shrimp.
    If I thought I could make a Jambalaya better. and more economical than Zatarain's, I would do it. They seem to have just the right blend of spices and is very tasty to say the least.
    The first thing I do is prepare two packages of Zatarain's Jambalaya mix in a large stock pot. It calls for two and a half cups of water brought to a boil for each package.
    You can prepare this on a side burner on the BBQ, or on one of the main burners. I did not. I used my kitchen stove top.
    I don't use water as instructed. I substitute low sodium chicken broth and at least one can of beef broth.
    After you are done cooking the rice mix, using their exact instructions you will find that you need to add more broth so that it doesn't dry out. Play it by ear!
    Zatarains makes suggestions on what meats or seafood to add to Jambalaya mix and you can do that in a number of ways.
    They recommend adding smoked sausage, ham, chicken and shrimp. You can add one of these ingredients, one at a time, each time you serve it, or all at once.
    By smoked sausage I think they mean Andouille sausage. It is not readily available in my neck of the woods, so I substitute Kielbasa sausage.
    I grilled it on a gas barbecue, along with three chicken breasts and a red pepper. Real simple!
    After grilling, everything is cut up into bite size chunks and added to the pot. As recipes go this is an easy way to make a Jambalaya recipe that everybody will enjoy, and won't require you to stand over a hot grill, or stove all day long. Below is Zatarain's case of 12.

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