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Friday, October 23, 2009

A Good Day for Kitchen Fun

sauerkraut hot dish

It started raining two days ago, and it hasn't really stopped since. Supposed to keep it up for several more days. Maggie and I took a quick walk between downpours but it was really a cold, damp, dismal day. It was a good day to warm up the kitchen with the oven and create some good aromas. I decided to bake something.

The picture above is a hot dish that I actually made earlier in the week. It was really easy, and really yummy. That is, if you like sauerkraut. The recipe was on the can, so I can probably share it without any copyright concerns. Besides, it's barely a recipe since you can use any quantities of the ingredients that you would like.

Fry some onions with some cut up pieces of kielbasa in a little oleo. Add some peeled, coarsely chopped apple and cook till the apple is softened a little. Add a can of sauerkraut and cook over low heat till the whole thing is heated through. I liked it a lot.

I can tell from the poll above that no one really wants this to be a food blog. And it won't be. (I was kind of thinking of foods as art in the poll, not recipes). But since this blog is also about sharing some accomplishments, the days I can get myself into the kitchen are a big deal for me. I basically gave up cooking about 17 years ago. I figured at the time that I had already cooked a couple of lifetime quotas of meals (that's a different story). Om and I liked totally different foods, and the kids were gone! Since then, I've mostly cooked for myself, and occasionally on holidays or when beaten severely about the head and shoulders with a cosh of good old fashioned guilt. But no one has starved.

When Om had his heart attack two years ago I went back to cooking full time and re-doing all kinds of recipes to make them healthy for him, and finding a bunch of new ones that he would be willing to eat. I managed to keep that up for about 4 or maybe 5 months. He gradually figured out what he was willing to eat long term, and willing to fix. He is still eating healthy, and is healthy!

muffin ingredients

But I find myself less and less willing to even bake anything, which I did like to do even when cooking was less than a thrill. So, who cares, right? Well, the problem is that I do. I really don't like processed foods much at all. So if I want to eat what I like, I need to make it! I bought a little $2.00 book called Fall Baking when I was in Ohio, and today I made Pumpkin Cranberry Muffins from it. There are some standard changes I make to everything I bake for us now, to make them healthier for Om. I substitute Splenda for half the sugar, leave out the salt, use better quality oil, and use Egg-Beaters for the eggs. Even so, these muffins have a pretty hefty calorie count at 252 each. Their other values are good though. Here's how they came out, and THEY ARE YUMMY, too yummy for their calories.

pumpkin cranberry muffins

I have a collection of low-fat muffin recipes that use cottage cheese instead of oil, and I think that this recipe can be adapted to that method to make it lower fat. Meanwhile, we have muffins to last for a little while- I made two dozen!

So I promise not to turn this into a food blog, but that's what happened here at Chez Shark today.

See I Cleaned and Baked, Just For You
See Smart Balance Eliminates a Great Product


RNSANE said...

There was a time I love to cook and bake, In fact, I once did some catering. My collection of over five hundred cookbooks came from my worldwide travels. My extensive back surgery, then my forensic nursing job, which had me at the ER all hours of the day and night doing adult and child sexual assault cases, gradually changed my ability to spend long hours in the kitchen. Occasionally, I still haul out a cookbook, or look for something online, but I prefer to dine out. Retirement has made that less affordable so it's back to the kitchen for me.

Thanks for the new recipe!

Sharkbytes said...

RNSANE- We sure do go through phases in our lives, don't we? The cost of eating out just floors me most of the time, plus I prefer to hibernate at home. Hey! I'm glad you like the sauerkraut idea. It's really easy and fast, yet good ... big plusses with me.

Rick (Ratty) said...

I love reading about food and recipes sometimes, so a sometimes food blog is more than fine with me. I never liked sauerkraut because I'm picky like a little kid, but those muffins are making my mouth water.

Sharkbytes (TM) said...

Ratty- The only way we can discipline ourselves on something so yummy as those muffins is to freeze them. Then we just take out one at a time to thaw and eat. Not all my new recipe adventures are real keepers, but this one sure is!

I'm glad you don't mind an occasional food post. It's part of what I do, so I'm sure it will continue to reappear.