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Fajita Tacos and Green Beans

Monday, October 05, 2015, 08:00 PM (2015-10-05_200001)

I made fajita tacos since we wanted something (relatively) quick and not too many calories.

I made the fajita mix with:

I combined everything but the hatch peppers in the cast iron with some oil and cooked them. At a certain point, I added about 1/2 Tbsp of butter. As it was closer to being finished, I peeled the hatch chiles and added them.

We also had about 1/2 lbs of bottom round, grass-fed steak. As you can see in the photos below, I cooked the whole thing on the pan. I really struggled with the steak. First, the pan was way too hot and the oil just burned. Then, despite thinking I had overcooked it, as you can see in the photos, it was super, super rare. I had to cook it a little but more. The net result was an acceptably done but very tough steak. I used McCormick Grill Mates Montreal Chicken Seasoning on the steak.

I served them on two pan-heated corn tortillas (50cal each) with extra filling in a bowl.

Finally, for me, I also roasted green beans. I did them at 450°F in the convection toaster oven. When they were finished, I was distracted and they sat in the oven (off but still warm) for a little while. I do not know if it was due to not adjusting the heat for the convection or if it was the extra time, but they were overcooked. And I forgot to season them going in so the seasoning didn't stick well and they lacked flavor. Not my best showing.....

Additional Photos

Before cutting First cooking try. Very rare. Back on the pan... Cooked through after being put back on the pan

Seared Salmon and Roasted Kabocha Squash

Wednesday, September 30, 2015, 12:00 AM (2015-09-30_000000)

We planned a fast and easy meal. It was basically an exact copy of a few meals, but I think the first one was 2014-01-05.

Anyway, I roasted kabocha squash for ~30 @ 400F, flipped half way. I also had the cast-iron pan in the oven to heat up for the salmon, which I did my normal way. I did it with salt and dill which I think was a first for this method. It worked well. I would do that again.

It was all very good. I was worried about overcooking the salmon since it was thin and think I undercooked it instead. Still, it was fine.

I like the squash since I can eat a lot without too many points/calories.

Burrito Bowls with Cauliflower Rice

Tuesday, September 29, 2015, 10:00 PM (2015-09-29_220000)

Meredith and I made burrito bowls with cauliflower rice. There ended up not being too much to it. I made tons of onions and peppers, heated some canned black beans with oregano and cumin, and some pan "grilled" chicken. For the chicken and the peppers I used a lot Badia Adobo seasoning like I used here with fajita tacos. I also added some garlic powder to the onions and peppers. Oh, and we also topped it with some

The reason I said it "ended up" being not too bad is Meredith also made black beans but they had issues and weren't ready yet. I am sure I will post about them when we eat them (and add a link in the future)

Additional Photos

All of the meat and stuff cooking Finished (photo from above)

Cuban Style Black Beans

Tuesday, September 29, 2015, 08:00 PM (2015-09-29_200000)

Meredith made black beans based on a recipe from Science of Good Cooking. I am not linking the recipe since we basically reproduce it below in our own words.

As you can see from the recipe below, we struggled to cook them fully. It actually took much longer than it was supposed to. That is likely due to the altitude. In the future, we will consider slow cooker or pressure cooker methods.

But, these were also some of the most flavorful beans Meredith has made. She'll also look into using baking soda in beans more often.


Ingredients (group 1)

Ingredients (group 2)


Brine the beans (about 1.5 Tbsp in 2 qt cold water) overnight (or really, ~24 hours)

Combine all ingredients group 1 in a dutch oven and bring to simmer over medium-high. Then cover and reduce to low. Cook for 45 minutes to an hour.

Eventually added 1/4 tsp baking soda since they weren't softening (found on the web. Not sure where)

Cook for another 45-60 minutes.

Drain and reserve ~2 cups cooking liquid.

In the pan, add the second ingredient group. Sauté, add some of the reserved liquid, add the beans, then the rest of the liquid. Simmer for another 15 minutes or so

Thai Style Sweet and Sour Seitan

Monday, September 28, 2015, 08:20 PM (2015-09-28_202000)

I made sweet and sour seitan from the same recipe as last time. I did have to make some changes. The recipe is not in a great order. I basically just divided it up into three things:

Basically the same changes as last time including the jalapeños, except I think I went overboard on the pineapple (probably around 3/4 of one) and the onion (around 1 cup or 4x). There was basically too much solids for the liquids and it wasn't as flavorful.

If I make it again, I will try to go lighter on the bulk. And probably turn it into its own recipe page....

Avocado Basil Zucchini Noodles with Shrimp

Sunday, September 27, 2015, 08:25 PM (2015-09-27_202509)

We wanted to get this in before we got too far into fall. We made the pretty standard Avocado-Basil Zucchini Noodles (w/o corn) and had it with zucchini noodles and shrimp (steamed for frozen, about 4 minutes). There wasn't too much to this. I basically followed the recipe (using 1 lime despite saying 3/4 last time)

It came out pretty good. A very tasty. The only points are from the avocado (8 total) plus the greek yogurt (<1 point). Overall, really not too bad!

Additional Photos

Basil, fresh from Meredith's garden Prep for the sauce

Salmon Burgers and Gem Lettuce

Saturday, September 26, 2015, 12:00 AM (2015-09-26_000000)

Pretty simple and fast meal. We were hungry but (a) it was kinda late to go out, (b) we had to use of the lettuce, and (c) we wanted something healthier than eating out.

We made the lettuce thing from the other day and also just had pan-cooked salmon burgers on multigrain bread. Again, simple and fast but also very tasty.

Allevatori Uova (Italian Huevos Rancheros)

Friday, September 25, 2015, 12:00 AM (2015-09-25_000000)

This was an interesting idea. We made what is basically my Huevos Motuleños but Italian style. (Actually, we more closely made Italian Huevos Rancheros or "Ranchers' Eggs")

Anyway, we had leftover cannellini beans but didn't want to use them on something Mexican given their strong rosemary flavor. Instead we decided to do it Italian style. We used Classico Spicy Red Pepper Sauce instead of salsa/chili and also topped it with cheddar (not very Italian but it's what we had).

It was actually pretty good. Crisp tortillas and interesting flavors. I really wish I could get it as cleanly out of the pan as the first time but that has yet to every happen again!

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