Easy Cook: Fresh Cranberry Fruit Compote

Cranberries add a festive and refreshing touch to holiday meals. The tart flavor of cranberry sauce helps tone down the rich flavors of a large holiday turkey meal. Doesn’t cut the calories of the meal you just ate, but it does cleanse the palate. Last weekend  company was visiting — they helped with the cooking. My niece and I created wonderful fresh fruit compote with cranberries and foods on my kitchen counter. We served the dish at almost all meals and discovered it was a satisfying substitute for high-calorie desserts. Guess we found a way to save on calories, after all.

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Easy Cook: Braised Red Cabbage

In general, it doesn’t seem like a nursing home dining room would be the place where a person would encounter fine gourmet.  But on a visit to my mother’s retirement center some time ago, the residents were served Braised Red Cabbage. The cabbage was finely shredded, tender, just a little sweet and seasoned just right. It was divine and I’ve been trying to duplicate the recipe ever since.  

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Easy Cook: Kung Po Inspired Tilapia

I sent my husband to the grocery store to purchase catfish. He brought home tilapia. It’s not the same fish; you can’t deep fry a delicate tilapia filet–it will fall apart. I remembered a recipe for a quick-to-prepare Chinese dish for “Kung Po Cod” in our local newspaper using cod fish and lots of peppers. Why not use the tilapia instead? The dish is fantastic; but about the only similarity with the real Kung Po dish is the peanuts. Continue reading

Game Day Sloppy Joes

The seasons turned from summer to fall last week; the weather doesn’t feel any different; it is still hot and muggy. But now it is football season and in Louisiana folks take this sport seriously. Tailgating before LSU college football games is a social ritual; hundreds of folks descend onto the LSU campus for an afternoon party and then to watch the game. “Game Day Sloppy Joes” is an easy and tasty main dish to serve at the picnic.

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Easy Cook: Roasted Cauliflower

Have you ever gone grocery shopping and purchased a gorgeous vegetable or piece of fruit on a whim just because it looked so tempting. But alas, it set on the kitchen counter for several days until it was too over-ripe to use? Yes, ripe produce spoils quickly. It is nice to have some easy ways to prepare the vegetable or fruit with ingredients that are generally in a home pantry; a recipe not requiring alot of time or effort. Hence, Easy Cook: Roasted Cauliflower. Continue reading