See what Chef Joey’s cookin’ up for our CECELIA readers!
Love this taco recipe from Chef Joey. We’re reposting it in honor of the holiday! You can substitute tofu for the meat or get creative with a mock meat, pictured below. – R.T.
Recipe and text by Chef Joey
Cinco de Mayo. This is actually a celebration, as much as I hate to say it, of the victory of the Battle of Puebla against the French in 1862. It was led by General Ignacio Seguin. Not the Independence day that is on September 16th.
The French occupied Mexico after the Mexican / American War and that lasted for a couple of years in the 1840s. Then again in the late 1850s – that basically stemmed from a church and state separation issue. Napoleon III thought it was a great opportunity to establish a “Latin” interest in Mexico to favor French interests.
Bla bla bla .. skipping past all the names and details … basically the French army encountered heavy resistance from the Mexicans close to Puebla … The 6,000 French soldiers attacked the much smaller and unprepared Mexican army of fewer than 2,000. However, on May 5, 1862, the Mexicans managed to decisively crush the French army, then considered “the premier army in the world.”
A 2007 UCLA Newsroom article noted: “The holiday, which has been celebrated in California continuously since 1863, is virtually ignored in Mexico.”
TIME magazine reported that “Cinco de Mayo started to come into vogue in 1940s America during the rise of the Chicano movement.” The holiday crossed over from California into the rest of the United States in the 1950s and 1960s but did not gain popularity until the late 1980s when marketers, especially beer companies, capitalized on the celebratory nature of the day.
Bottle of Corona, anyone?
1 pound ground turkey / pork / chicken / beef
1 red pepper, chopped fine
1 yellow pepper, chopped fine
1/2 cup chopped onion
3 or 4 garlic cloves, minced
1-1/2 cups salsa
1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
8 cups torn romaine or shredded lettuce
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves
Toppings can include:
Chopped tomatoes, shredded cheddar cheese and crushed tortilla chips
In a large skillet, cook meat, peppers, onion and garlic over medium heat 6-8 minutes or until the meat is no longer pink and vegetables are tender.
Stir in salsa, beans, chili powder and cumin; heat through.
Divide the lettuce among your plates.
Top with the meat mixture.
Sprinkle with cilantro and your choice of toppings.
And for all you vegetarians out there!
Tomato and Hot Pepper Salsa!
2-3 medium-size fresh tomatoes, finely diced
1/2 red onion, finely diced
1 jalapeño, seeded, de-ribbed, and finely diced
1 serrano pepper, or to taste, seeded, de-ribbed, and finely diced
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 cup Sriracha sauce
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tsp. dried oregano, or to taste
1 tsp. ground toasted cumin seeds, or to taste
Combine all the ingredients in a medium-size bowl. Taste and adjust the seasonings as desired.
Let sit for 1 hour before serving.
Makes 3 to 4 cups
Adapted from The Ultimate Beer Lover’s Happy Hour by John Schlimm. Suggested beer pairings: pale lager, American wheat ale, or an amber lager.
Mexican Noodle Soup
Written by Ashley Palmer
This noodle soup was inspired by our growing PETA Latino community! The popular Mexican dish, referred to as “sopa de fideo,” is versatile and can be altered to your liking. Want a thicker base, spicier flavor, or splash of lemon juice? No problem!
4–6 large tomatoes, cut into large cubes
1 medium white onion, cut into large cubes
1 clove garlic
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 16 oz.-pkg. cut fideo or 1 16 oz.-pkg. angel hair pasta, broken into 1-inch pieces
32 oz. vegetable broth
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 Tbsp. pepper
2 Tbsp. oregano
2 Tbsp. cumin
Chili flakes, chopped serrano chilies, or diced jalapeños, to taste (optional)
Cilantro, soy sour cream, and sliced avocado, for garnish (optional)
In a blender, purée the tomatoes, onions, garlic, and oil.
Transfer to a large pot and cook over medium heat.
Add the noodles, broth, salt, pepper, oregano, and cumin.
For a spicier soup, add the chili flakes, serrano chilies, or jalapeños.
Cook for approximately 12 to 15 minutes, then simmer until the noodles are tender.
Garnish with optional toppings, as desired.
Makes 10 to 12 servings
4 medium, very ripe Haas avocados, peeled and minced
1/2 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup finely diced red onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp. sea salt
In a large bowl, mash all the ingredients together with a potato masher until well combined.
Makes 3 1/2 cups
12 oz. vegan burger crumbles
1 packet taco seasoning
2 15.5-oz. cans enchilada sauce
18 corn tortillas
2 15.5-oz. cans pinto beans, drained
2 green onions, chopped
2 cups vegan cheddar cheese, shredded
1 4.5-oz. can diced green chilies
2 cups corn chips, finely crushed
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
In a small bowl, combine the burger crumbles and taco seasoning and set aside.
Spray a 9-inch by 13-inch pan with oil.
In layers, spread a generous amount of enchilada sauce, 6 corn tortillas, 2 cans of pinto beans, a handful of green onion, a third of the shredded “cheese,” half the can of green chilies, lots more enchilada sauce, 6 more tortillas, all the seasoned burger crumbles, another third of the “cheese,” the remaining green chilies, more enchilada sauce, then the final 6 tortillas, more enchilada sauce, and the rest of the “cheese.”
Cover in foil and bake for 30 minutes.
Remove the foil, top the entire casserole with the corn chips.
Bake for another 15 to 30 minutes or until bubbly and browned. Makes 6 servings.
We do our grocery shopping here and love it! Open ALL DAY, 7 days a week. Fun!💋 They’re located in Shrewsbury, Rt. 9, just over the Worcester line, just over the cool bridge! They sell EVERYTHING, including organic, veggie fare – cheap! Plus plants, cut flowers, greeting cards, soaps, lotions, personal care products – all BEAUTIFULLY PRICED! CHECK ‘EM OUT!
Whether you’re brand new to vegan eating or a seasoned pro looking for extra inspiration, we’re here to help you find great food.
The wide array of vegan products at Trader Joe’s, for example, makes finding plant-based foods especially easy and convenient.
Check out the sample meal plan we’ve laid out below based on vegan items at Trader Joe’s, where one-stop shopping for an entire week’s worth of dinners is a snap.
Monday: Meatless Meatball Subs
Tuesday: Black Bean and Beefless Crumble Tacos
Wednesday: Sriracha Baked Tofu Stir-Fry
Thursday: Cashew Cream Tomato Pasta
Friday: BBQ Tofu Sliders with Broccoli Slaw
Sunday: Corndog Muffins
Monday: Meatless Meatball Subs
Costs approximately $1.85 per serving
These four ingredients will cure your case of the Mondays.
1 pkg. frozen Meatless Meatballs
1 jar Traditional Marinara Sauce
1 pkg. vegan hot dog buns
1/2 pkg. Vegan Mozzarella Style Shreds
Prepare the vegan meatballs according to the package instructions.
Add the marinara sauce to a skillet and heat over medium heat until warmed through.
Toast the buns and fill with the vegan meatballs (about 6 per bun). Top with the sauce and vegan cheese shreds and, if desired, toast in a toaster oven for 5 minutes or until the “cheese” melts.
Makes up to 5 subs
Tuesday: Black Bean and Beefless Crumble Tacos
Costs approximately $3.50 per serving (2 or 3 tacos), not including toppings
Grab your favorite oil and fry up these ingredients.
1 pkg. Beef-Less Ground Beef
1 pkg. Taco Seasoning Mix
1 jar Traditional Marinara Sauce
1 15-oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
5 taco shells
1 avocado, sliced
Salsa, shredded lettuce, and vegan cheese (optional)
Prepare the beefless ground beef according to the package instructions and transfer to a skillet. Add the taco seasoning mix and tomato sauce and cook over medium heat until thickened. Stir in the black beans and cook until warmed through.
Fill the taco shells with the beefless crumble mixture, avocado, and any other toppings of your choice.
Makes 5 tacos
Wednesday: Sriracha Baked Tofu Stir-Fry
Costs approximately $2.36 per serving
Warning: You may get addicted to this Sriracha tofu!!
Oil, for frying
1 pkg. Sriracha Baked Tofu
1 pkg. frozen Vegetable Fried Rice
1 pkg. fresh broccoli florets or baby broccoli
Cut tofu into strips.
Combine all the ingredients in a lightly oiled pan and cook covered for 12 to 15 minutes or until heated through, stirring occasionally.
Makes 3 to 4 servings
Thursday: Cashew Cream Tomato Pasta
Costs approximately 65 cents per serving
Your friends won’t believe how easy this dish is to make.
1 16-oz. pkg. penne or rigatoni pasta
1 jar Organic Tomato Basil Marinara
1 cup cashew pieces
1/2 cup almond milk
Prepare the pasta according to the package instructions.
Blend the remaining ingredients in a food processor or blender.
Add the pasta and the sauce mixture to a large saucepan. Stir over medium-high heat until warmed through.
Makes 8 servings
Friday: Tofu Sliders with Broccoli Slaw
Costs approximately $2 per serving
These vegan sliders are the perfect potluck dish.
1 pkg. extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
1 cup Organic Brown Sugar BBQ Sauce and Marinade
1 pkg. Organic Broccoli Slaw
3/4 to 1 cup Vegan Spread & Dressing
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup raisins or dried cranberries (optional)
1 pkg. Mini Hamburger Buns
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Coat the tofu with the BBQ sauce and bake on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper for 20 to 30 minutes, flipping once halfway through.
In a large bowl, combine the broccoli slaw, vegan spread, sugar, salt, apple cider vinegar, and raisins or dried cranberries, if using.
Toast the buns and layer on the baked tofu and broccoli slaw.
Makes 5 servings
Costs approximately $1 per serving, not including extra toppings
This is what pizza should look like.
1 pkg. Regular, Whole Wheat, or Garlic & Herb refrigerated pizza dough
Flour, for dusting the work surface and baking sheet
1 jar pizza sauce
1/2 pkg. Vegan Mozzarella Style Shreds (optional)
Toppings of your choice (mushrooms, olives, artichoke hearts, etc.)
Preheat the oven to 450°F.
Knead the pizza dough on a lightly floured work surface and then flatten onto a floured baking sheet.
Spread the pizza sauce evenly on top and add the vegan cheese, if using, as well as your favorite toppings. Bake until the crust is golden brown, about 20 minutes.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
Sunday: Corndog Muffins
Costs approximately $2.22 per serving
We’ve got a recipe video ready to help you throw these together.
And of course, Trader Joe’s has plenty of other vegan products that aren’t on this list, too — including fresh produce and beverages.
This list is just a template to help you get started, but there are thousands of recipes on PETA.org, if you want to swap anything out. And if you’re ever feeling stuck in a rut, cooking the same foods over and over again, just pop by the PETA Living food page for some new inspiration.
You can go vegan, and we can help you eat all the same foods that you ate before, just without the animal-derived ingredients. Help create a compassionate, sustainable future by always opting for vegan products when you dine out and shop for groceries!
It ain’t Rt. 9…
Garbanzo & Spinach Soup
Recipe by Chef Joey
4 tbsp olive oil
1 onion chopped
1 celery stalk chopped
1 carrot chopped
3 cups spinach, chopped fine
1 cup garbanzo beans (cooked is
cheaper – 89¢ a pound = 3
pounds cooked) $1 a can/cup
1 cup soup pasta (ditalini is my
Salt and pepper
Here is the easy part: bring the stock to a boil.
In a sauté pan, add 3 tbsp oil and the carrots, onion and celery.
Sauté 5 minutes until soft.
Add the spinach and salt, pepper mix and cook an additional 5 minutes.
Add this and the beans to the stock and cook for a half hour.
Then add the pasta to cook for 6 or 7 minutes – to “al dente” because the pasta will continue to swell.
Drizzle with 1 tbsp oil and serve.
Why You Should Celebrate a Cruelty-Free Easter
As Christians remember Christ’s crucifixion as the final sacrifice and celebrate His victory over death in the resurrection, let us resolve to emulate His compassion in our own lives by showing mercy to animals.
There’s no better place to begin than the dinner table. As we break bread, let’s break ties with some of the most violent and ungodly places on Earth — slaughterhouses and factory farms.
Before they become Sunday’s centerpiece, animals on factory farms are denied everything that God designed them to want and do. They never breathe fresh air, nurture their young, play with other animals, or do anything to live out the biblical concept that “God’s mercy is over all His creatures.”
For example, pigs spend their entire lives in filthy concrete pens, and cruelty is rampant, as witnessed by PETA investigators.
PETA’s investigation of Belcross Farm, a pig-breeding facility in North Carolina, resulted in the first-ever felony indictments for cruelty to animals by farm workers in the U.S.
PETA’s undercover investigation at Seaboard Farms, Inc. has resulted in the filing of felony cruelty-to-animals charges against a former manager at the facility.
Easter is also no celebration for hens on egg farms, who suffer constant confinement to tiny, filthy wire cages. Male chicks are killed — often through suffocation — since they don’t produce eggs, and female chicks have their beaks painfully seared off to keep them from pecking one another.
Cows on dairy farms are kept continually impregnated, and their calves are snatched away just after birth so that their mothers’ milk can be consumed by humans.
At the end of their short, miserable lives, these animals are crammed into trucks, with little protection from the elements, to suffer the ultimate terror of the slaughterhouse, where workers hang them upside-down and slit their throats.
What You Can Do
Plant-based foods can be found in supermarkets (editor’s note: check out TRADER JOE’S in Shrewsbury, Rt 9, just over the bridge) and on the menus of many chain restaurants.
Since eating vegan is easier than ever, there’s simply no reason for any animals to end up on our plates!
Homemade Vegan Easter Eggs!🐰🐰
There are a variety of places online where you can order vegan Easter candy, and finding vegan chocolate bunnies, chocolate eggs, or jelly beans — just like those you remember filling your Easter basket with as a child — is no longer difficult. However, if you’re like me and you’ve waited until the last minute to plan for the sugar fest that often comes with the holiday, finding these goodies won’t be quite as easy.
But don’t fear! Those of us who tend to procrastinate — or are just super-crafty — can go the homemade route!
Below is a recipe for basic chocolate eggs, which you can then turn into a variety of designs.
1 8-oz. package nondairy cream cheese, softened at room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, melted
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
Decorations, e.g., chopped nuts, unsweetened cocoa, toasted flaked coconut
Beat the nondairy cream cheese in a mixing bowl until it is smooth.
Gradually add the powdered sugar, beating until it is well blended.
Add the melted chocolate and vanilla and mix well.
Refrigerate for about 1 hour.
Shape the mixture into 1-inch balls or egg shapes and roll them in the nuts, cocoa, or coconut.
Store the finished chocolates in the refrigerator.
Makes approximately 5 dozen chocolates
🌷🌼Some “eggs-traordinary” ideas!!🌼🌷:
Roll egg-shaped chocolate in chopped nuts.
If you can find a cute Easter-themed mold, simply fill it with the chocolate and refrigerate.
Allow the chocolate to cool in a thin layer, then cut out your favorite shape with Easter-themed cookie cutters.
Decorate egg-shaped chocolate with dyed coconut. I recommend adding a few drops of food coloring to water and then adding your coconut. Allow to soak for a few minutes in the water, then remove and allow to dry completely before using to decorate.
Use plastic Easter eggs to get your desired shape, scoop out the center, and fill with peanut butter, nuts, or another favorite candy.
Close the plastic egg and refrigerate until both sides are firm and have joined together.
Cover egg-shaped chocolate with holiday color foils or ribbons.
Cover egg-shaped chocolate with vegan nonpareils or another small vegan candy.
You can shape and decorate the chocolate any way you’d like, so get creative with it!
Photos, recipe and text by Chef Joey
That wonderful spring holiday, Easter, is upon us and, as with holidays, food is involved. Main courses vary for Easter, as it is the end of Lent, but meat is usually at the top of the menu. Depending on your heritage, Easter lamb is right up there, but there is one staple food that is widely known and on just about everyone’s table: Easter Bread.
In many European countries, many traditions exist with the use of bread during Easter. Traditionally, the Easter bread is sweetened. I was curious to learn that “Communion” bread traces its origin back to Byzantium and the Orthodox Christian church. However, the recipe for sweeter bread – sweetened with honey – dates as far back to the Homeric Greek period! Many classical texts mention a “honey-bread.” It is also widely known that sweetened bread desserts similar to today’s panettone, were always a Roman favorite.
The Easter holiday is one where “sweet” bread brings itself into the symbolic realm.
The Sweeter breads indicate Easter Sunday and the rising of Christ.
Although bread is significant for religious purposes, it is also symbolic of life. A peasant proverb: “Chie hat pane mai non morit” — “One who has bread never dies.”
Throughout history there have been many shapes of Easter breads. One usually contained two points and an egg covered with a cross. The egg and the points that recall birds in flight speak of fertility, sexuality and procreation — basic themes in Easter and its pagan origins. This was most likely the influence of today’s braided bread.
The second bread was designed to have no general shape, but was rather baked to encircle an egg, with the initials BP put on it. The initials BP stand for Buona Pasquaor – “Happy Easter.”
Babka is a Polish bread also made at Easter. Babka typically is tall and cylindrical, like panetonne. It frequently contains raisins, may be iced on top and is sweet.
Here is a simple, basic Easter bread recipe. You can adjust the sweetness. It is extremely delicious on a Monday morning toasted with butter – just sayin’! It is a basic sweet bread recipe my Greek and Italian family used with a few modern touches. You can place colored, pre-cooked hard boiled eggs in your braid, and there is no limit, usually one egg per household member was incorporated into the bread.
FYI: My Greek family used to boil the eggs in red onion skins to color them; the Italians used red wine instead of water. Try 4 cups of blueberries in water and boil your Easter eggs for lavender! Curry for yellow – the list goes on!💗💚💗💚💚💗
1/2 cup whole milk
10 tablespoons sugar, divided
1 1/4 envelope active dry yeast
4 large eggs, room temperature
6 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup (2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1″ pieces, room temperature, plus 1/2 tablespoon, melted
Heat milk in a small saucepan over medium heat or in a microwave until an instant-read thermometer registers no more than 110°F.
Transfer milk to a bowl; stir in 1 tablespoon sugar.
Sprinkle yeast over milk and whisk to blend.
If the milk is too hot, it will kill the yeast. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
Add eggs and whisk until smooth.
Combine remaining sugar, flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook.
Add milk to mixture. With mixer running, add the room-temperature butter, 1 piece at a time, blending well between additions.
Mix on medium speed for 1 minute.
Knead on medium-high speed until dough is soft and silky, about 5 minutes.
If kneading by hand, have the flour in a separate bowl and add the milk mixture and butter so it incorporates.
Take a bowl double the size of the dough and wipe the inside with some melted butter.
Place dough in bowl. Brush top of dough with remaining melted butter; cover with plastic wrap.
Let dough rise in a warm, draft-free area until doubled in size, 1 – 1 1/2 hours.
Punch down the dough and divide it into 2 equal pieces.
Then divide each piece into 3 equal pieces.
Dust your hands with flour and roll out to about a foot a half (18”). Place on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
Arrange ropes side by side lengthwise on prepared sheet.
Pinch top ends together. Braid dough. Pinch bottom ends together to secure (braided loaf will be about 12″ long).
If adding hard boiled eggs, tuck them between braids, spacing evenly. Loosely cover with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel. Let rise in a warm, draft-free area until puffed but not doubled in size, 45-50 minutes.
Arrange a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 375°F.
Whisk remaining egg with 2 teaspoons warm water in a small bowl.
Avoiding dyed eggs, brush dough all over with egg wash. Bake until bread is golden usually about 20 – 25 minutes and a thermometer inserted into center of loaf reads 190°F.
Cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.🎷🎷
Text and recipe by Chef Joey
As this wacky weather tries to confuse us, one thing is certain on a cold raw day … soup. Soup is good food, inexpensive and nutritious. All you need are a few veggies and the basis of most soups – ONION!
For centuries humans have had some sort of soup – hence the word to “SUP” or SUPPER – it means soup.
Here is a quick onion soup recipe that is easy to make, and the first few steps are the basis to many soups – like lentil, barley, minestrone – you just keep adding to it.
If you ever make a soup with pasta or rice – cook those items separately and add them to the soup last minute. What you don’t eat can be frozen separately. When you add these items to a soup, they continue to swell and take over the broth!
Basic Onion Soup – serves 6
3 Large onions, peeled cut in half then sliced
3 cloves of garlic chopped fine
3 tbsp butter
2 tbsp sugar
8 cups water
3 tablespoons flour (cornstarch for gluten free)
If using cornstarch, mix with cold water then add to soup to prevent lumps.
In a large soup pot, melt the butter and add the onions and garlic.
Stir to make them sweat, then add ¼ cup water and cover.
Simmer until soft.
This is the base for most soups.
For French onion, add the sugar and stir constantly. As the water evaporates the onions will start to brown. As they get nice and caramelized, add the flour mix by sprinkling a spoonful at a time and stirring. Once incorporated (or thickened with cornstarch), add the rest of the water and your beef base (follow the instructions on the container). I like the Knorr MSG free individual containers.
Basically, that’s it. Stir and let simmer for a ½ hour.
Salt and pepper to taste – if it seems too watery add some more base.
For other soups: add your veggies or lentils or barley or mix them – they are 70 cents a bag and can feed 8 people and the protein is amazing.
Cube up a couple of potatoes and carrots. Add celery tomatoes and corn – and you have a minestrone!
Mark your calendars for an REC Special day:
CAKES AND FROSTING!
Pics, text and recipes by Chef Joey
Basic Vanilla Cake:
The base for homemade cakes is so simple – keep this recipe for life!!
2 ½ cups sifted flour
2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
½ tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 cups HOT water
1 tsp vanilla extract
Combine the flour, sugar and oil until well mixed like a thick paste.
Sprinkle with the baking soda and powder and pour the hot water on it. It will start foaming.
Mix BY HAND with a wooden spoon.
Add the vanilla extract.
Pour into your pre-dusted cake pan and bake 20-25 mins for 2 rounds and about 35 for a rectangle cake at 350 degrees.
For Chocolate cake, add 6 tbsp of powdered cocoa to the flour before you sift it.
For Orange cake, add the zest of one orange and substitute ½ cup water for juice.
For Citrus cake, add the zests of lemons and limes and 1 tsp lemon or lime juice during the final mix.
Sooo Easy Frosting:
3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup butter, softened
1 ½ 1teaspoons vanilla
1 to 2 tablespoons milk
In medium bowl, mix powdered sugar and butter with spoon or electric mixer on low speed.
Stir in vanilla and 1 tablespoon of the milk. Add your yellow food coloring* if making a Smiley Cake.
Or make an ALL NATURAL YELLOW COLOR:
You can make natural food coloring by taking a small saucepan … add ¼ cup water, bring to a boil.
Add ½ tsp of turmeric for 3 to 5 minutes.
Allow to fully cool.
Add 1 tsp to your icing.
You can store this for up to 2 weeks in an air-tight container …
… Or add it to chic peas with some oil, salt and lemon juice for a refreshing snack! Turmeric stains so be extra careful.
Back to the frosting: Gradually beat in just enough remaining milk to make frosting smooth and spreadable.
If frosting is too thick, beat in more milk, a few drops at a time.
If frosting becomes too thin, beat in a small amount of powdered sugar.
You can frost a 13- x 9-inch or fill and frost an 8-inch two-layer cake. Make another ½ cup for a 9 inch cake.
Text and photos by Chef Joey
We have a few things to look forward to this month – we get to change the clocks this weekend and gain more daylight! The days have been waxing right along and now a whole extra hour to adjust to. Then, of course, we have a parade to honor the city’s Irish population for good ol’ Saint Patrick.
Little is known of Patrick’s lifeline, but it is sort of narrowed down to the second half of the 5th century – that’s a long time ago, for sure. What is known about this Saint is that he was born in what is now called Great Britain. His first name was Sucat and he was kidnapped by pirates when he was about 16 years of age. He was a slave to these Irish pirates for about six years, and he managed to escape and get back to his family.
He became a cleric and took the name Patrick, which means “nobleman” and decided to return to northern and western Ireland. Following the path, he eventually became an ordained Bishop. Unfortunately, not much is known about the places he worked – he does get credited for Christianizing the island and for being the first Bishop of Armagh, which is the of ALL of Ireland versus being the Bishop of Dublin.
So Patrick is known as the “Apostle of Ireland” and is the patron saint of Ireland, out showing poor Brigit and Columbia.
What makes his day so special?
It is actually the day of his death. Indecently, Patrick was so sacred it took two centuries to celebrate because it was a sacrilege to mention his name! Well, the real reason I believe is that it falls during Lent, and Catholics lifted the restrictions on eating and drinking alcohol for the day. This religious miracle has promoted and encouraged the tradition of over consumption!
There’s more to the holiday than drinking – eating is a big part of the celebrations. And what meal goes without bread?
So here is an Irish “Soda Bread” to whet yer whistle!
It is actually a quick bread and its roots go back far by mixing cake or pastry flour, baking soda and buttermilk, causing a chemical reaction to make bubbles in the bread.
4 cups all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter softened
1 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup buttermilk
Optional: 1 cup Soaked Raisins
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and lightly grease a large baking sheet.
In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and butter.
Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk and egg.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly.
Soak the raisins in warm water for a half hour and drain them and add to the mixture, if desired.
Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet.
In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk.
Brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an ‘X’ into the top of the loaf.
Bake in preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes.
Check for doneness after 30 minutes.
You may continue to brush the loaf with the butter mixture while it bakes.
Below: Chef Joey’s crew, all homeless and hurtin’ before Joey adopted them. Abby was thrown out of a car window! Vinny was abused and became a bellicose teddy bear❤!… Mikey needed a home so so badly! ALWAYS ADOPT!
Photos by Chef Joey
Got these cinnaroll pics from Chef Joey today. Here’s his recipe (one more time💙) to go with his photos! – R.T.
SUPER BOWL YUM YUMS🏈🏈🍻
Text, recipes and photos by Chef Joey
Super Bowl is amongst us again, and we are Massachusetts – the “Football Nation.” People are chatty, bets are being placed, and team spirit is at an all-time high.
So snacks are appropriate to have during the game, and what’s better than finger foods, right?
The pictures you see are of roll ups. I made these two for a sweet side, one with sugar and cinnamon, the other I added rum-soaked raisins. The joy of this snack is the fillings are endless!
For a different kind of snack, you can smear the middle with pesto and fresh mozzarella, provolone and pepperoni, Italian sausage and cheddar – the list is endless, and they can be all your favorite foods!
The whole recipe takes an hour and a half – start to finish – including the dough rising. If you are in a hurry, buy pre-made dough, but a 10-pound bag of flour is cheaper, and yeast lasts a while.
For the dough:
1 pound of dough (4 cups of flour) makes 2 rolls that yield about 14 slices each.
4 cups flour
1 packets active dry yeast or 4 tablespoons if you buy the money-saving jar
1 TBSP sugar
3 TBSP oil
1 TSP salt
WARM WATER (This varies from flour brand – for real! I like King Arthur.)
Add all the ingredients to a bowl EXCEPT THE WATER in a large bowl. Plan on 2 cups of super warm water but not hot, as you do not want to kill the yeast.
Keep adding the water until dough is malleable and basically dough-like.
Add additional flour if necessary.
Kneed for a few minutes until smooth – cover and place in a warm spot and let it rise for 30 minutes.
Punch the dough down, roll it out and cover and fill with your favorite filling.
Roll the dough up like in the pictures and cover it again and let it rise for another ½ hour.
Place in a pre-heated oven 375 degrees and bake for approximately 15 minutes.
Let cook and slice and serve! So easy! A recipe for life!
💖 Go ahead and make a pizza crust or form it into a loaf of Italian bread!
For the bread brush with olive oil and sprinkle with parmesan, or add pitted Kalamata olives for a rustic bread – your possibilities are endless. A 10 pound bag of flour for $8 makes a good 20 loaves or 30 pizzas or 20 roll ups – cheap – easy and DELICIOUS!
2 sticks of butter melted – ½ cup sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon – mix and spread it our between the 2 rolls roll and when they are baked – brush with a glaze of ¼ cup melted sugar and 1/16 cup water – brush on cooked buns and serve.