24 September 2007


Crock Pot Ham and Scalloped Potatoes

6-8 Slices of ham
8-10 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
2 onions, peeled and thinly sliced
1 c. grated Cheddar or American cheese
1 (10 oz.) can cream of celery or mushroom soup
Salt and pepper to taste

This recipe comes together easily when you have a food processor. The onions, peeled potatoes, and ham can be sliced, and then the cheese grated. I basically dump it all into a very large bowl to toss as I’m slicing it all up. Salt and pepper the mixture, to help avoid potato discoloration. Dump half of the ham and potato mixture in the crock-pot, and top with half the grated cheese. Repeat with remaining half. Spoon undiluted soup over the top and sprinkle with paprika. (Your crock-pot will be very full, but the potatoes will settle as they cook.) Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours, or on high 4 hours. Ingredients may be increased by half for the 4 1/2 quart size crock-pot. Serve with a nice loaf of pumpernickel bread and green beans and a nice green salad. Enjoy!


By Joy Howard, from Family Fun Magazine February, 2007

1 cup dried chickpeas
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup fresh curly parsley, stems removed, tightly packed
1-teaspoon cumin
1/2-teaspoon coriander
1/2-teaspoon baking soda dissolved in 1/4-cup water
1/2-teaspoon salt
1/2-teaspoon pepper
Pinch of cayenne
Vegetable oil for frying

Rinse the chickpeas, then soak them in a medium-size bowl in several inches of water overnight in the refrigerator. (I’ve found the patties won’t hold together as well if you use canned chickpeas.)
Drain the soaked chickpeas and place them in a food processor. Add all the remaining ingredients and blend, scraping the sides if necessary, until the mixture is creamy, about 1 minute total.
Heat an inch of oil in a large, heavy frying pan to 375ยบ (a spoonful of the mixture should sizzle as soon as it’s immersed). Scoop up a heaping dinner tablespoon of the falafel mixture and gently place it in the heated oil. Place 4 or 5 more spoonfuls in the pan. Fry the patties until they’re thoroughly brown on one side, about 2 to 3 minutes, then flip them to brown the other side.
Drain the patties on a plate covered with a paper towel and sprinkle with additional salt, if desired. Serve with yogurt dipping sauce. Makes 16-20 patties.

Merrilee’s remarks: Common mistake: I usually end up soaking a whole 1-lb.-bag of chickpeas, and then realize the next day that I started with more than 1 cup of dried chickpeas! So I end up tripling all the other ingredients, and they still turn out fine. You end up with a LOT of falafel, though, so be sure to have company over if you’re going to make that much. You can substitute green onions for the small onion if you like, and I tend to be very generous with the spices (heaping spoonfuls). I have also substituted basil for the parsley because that’s all we had, and they turned out fine. (Cilantro may also work, but it’s an acquired taste.) We serve them with tomato and cucumber slices and maybe a piece of lettuce and a dollop of plain yogurt in a pita pocket. If you don’t have a food processor, save up for one, and in the meantime, you could try using the blender. It’s supposed to be the consistency of wet grainy sand before you ball it up, so do batches of it in the blender and then combine by hand in a large bowl, adding the wet ingredients. Use a fork or potato masher to break up the big pieces. I keep the cooked ones warm in the oven so that we can all eat at roughly the same time. If you’re looking for a recipe for falafel using canned chickpeas, I have one as well, and they can be either baked or pan-fried. Enjoy!

These are photos of the last kitchen we had when we lived in an apartment. Although it only measured roughly 6ft by 8ft, I grew to love this kitchen. We bought the cart and the stainless steel shelves from IKEA, and transformed it into a very functional, cozy little corner. Everything was right within reach, and it was very space efficient. (Boy, my hair grows fast! I must have just come home from working out...) I hope that whatever kitchen you cook in, you love it!

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