Xander's Journal


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4 entries this month



05:08 Mar 24 2006
Times Read: 638

Source: DarkAdmin


1-1 1/2 lbs chop meat (You can mix veal with this but do it equally)

1 C chicken broth (Fresh or canned)

2 eggs

1 C bread crumbs

1/2 C grated cheese (Go to the store and buy fresh grated locatelli Romano or any fresh grated cheese try not to use the can stuff)

Garlic – (Fresh or powder – To Taste)

Basil (To Taste)

Salt (Sea Salt if you have it. Sea Salt gives you extra flavor to you food over regular salt)

Pepper (Fresh Ground Pepper is a plus)


1.) Mix meat, breadcrumbs and cheese in to a large bowl. Salt, Pepper, Basil and Garlic (If using fresh garlic then mince 3-4 cloves, try not to cut off your fingers) to taste. Now here is the part that most of you may or may not mind. Take a bit of the mixture and taste it. If it needs more salt then add. Do this for the garlic, pepper and basil. If it has a nice flavor raw it will taste good cooked. One you have the taste add chicken broth to make it moist it should not be a soup but a firm moist mass.

2.) Take a bit of the mixture about the size of an oversized golf ball and wet your hands with water and begin to roll the meat in a ball. The water will give it a round whole figure and make them look nice and neat. You can make them bigger but I always like them about that size.

3.) (Frying)

Now I like to use cast iron pans for the reason that cast iron gives you equal heat across the pan. Now the oil to use is extra virgin (What scarlet will never be again) Olive oil. Pout it into the pan about a ¼ inch to half inch high. Add Salt (Sea Salt if you have it) to the oil and 4-6 whole garlic cloves. Don’t worry about burning them its ok. Let the cloves get browned a bit and begin placing you balls in them. Now if you where adding them into a sauce then make sure they are cooked half way, what do I mean buy this? They should be nice and brown all over but press down on them a bit and if they have a soft feel to them then that’s what we want. Then begin placing them into your sauce. If you just want meat balls cook them until firm but not burnt.

3.) (Broiling)

You can place them in the broiler if you want. It does reduce the fat content but not by much or so I think. Cook them at 350 for about ½ hour to 45 minutes. Check them to see if done. They should not be rare so PINK is not an option.




Perfect Winter Beef Stew

05:54 Mar 13 2006
Times Read: 645

Source: Kraft Kitchens


3/4 C Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing

2 lb stewing beef

6 slices bacon, chopped

1 lg onion, chopped

3 C mushrooms, sliced

3 C carrots, sliced

3 med potatoes, peeled and cut into lg chunks (about 1 1/2 lb)

1 can (19 fl oz/ 540 ml) diced tomatoes, undrained

1 can (10 fl oz/ 284 ml) beef broth


1. Trim excess fat from meat and cut into 1" chunks. Place in a resealable plastic bag with dressing. Place in refrigerator for 30 min to marinate.

2. Cook acon in a lg pot on med heat until crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon.

3. Saute onion and mushrooms in pot on med-high heat until softened. Remove beef from marinade (discard marinade) and add to pot. Add carrots, potatoes, tomatoes with juice, broth and bacon to pot.

4. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 1 hour 15 min. Uncover, continue to simmer until meat is tender and sauce is thickened, stirring occasioally.

This is a fairly simple, delicious stew recipe. A couple of notes though. I find that the vegetables cook better if they are covered with liquid, so if you find that there isn't enough for this, add water to bring it up. Also, if the sauce isn't thickening, try adding a bit of cornstarch. The amount depends on how thick you want it, but don't add too much all at once.




Ukranian Borscht

05:37 Mar 13 2006
Times Read: 646

Source: allrecipes.com


6 C water

3/4 Tbsp salt

1/2 C carrots, finely chopped

1/4 C green bell pepper, chopped and divided

1/2 stalk celery, chopped

1 medium beet

1/2 C canned diced tomatoes

3 potatoes, quartered

1/3 C butter

1/2 C chopped onion

1 1/2 C canned tomatoes

3 C cabbage, finely shredded and divided

1/4 C heavy cream

3/4 C diced potatoes

1 Tbsp dried dill weed

1/4 Tbsp ground black pepper

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


1. Place water, salt, carrots, 1/2 of the bell pepper, celery, beet, tomatoes, and quartered potatoes in a large stock pot over high heat. Bring to a boil.

2. Melt 1/3 cup butter in a separate skillet over medium heat. Saute onions in butter until tender, approximately 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, reduce heat to medium low, and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove 1/2 cup of sauce from skillet, and set aside. Stir half of the cabbage into the skillet with remaining sauce, and continue simmering 5 minutes more, or until tender.

3. Remove beet from boiling liquid and discard. Remove potatoes with a slotted spoon or tongs, and place in a bowl with remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and the cream. Mash together until smooth.

4. Return the 1/2 cup of reserved onion-tomato sauce to the stock pot. Stir in diced potatoes, and simmer until just tender but still firm, approximately 5 minutes. Increase heat to a low boil, and stir in remaining cabbage, tomato sauce, and mashed potatoes. Reduce heat and simmer a few minutes more. Stir in remaining bell pepper, season with black pepper, and serve.

I'd suggest making twice the recipe for those who like this soup. As with the Russian variety, it freezes well. Good for those chilly nights.




Russian Borscht

05:28 Mar 13 2006
Times Read: 647

Source: russian-recipes.net


1 lb beef brisket (or chicken if you prefer)

1/2 lb broth veg. (carrots, leek and parsley)

2 med onions, chopped

salt & pepper

5-10 white peppercorns

2 bay leaves

2 med beetroots, peeled and sliced

4 Tbsp butter


3 Tbsp flour

3/4 lb white cabbage, sliced

3 tomatoes, chopped

5 med potatoes, boiled and chopped

4 Tbsp cooked kidney beans

1/4 lb cooked ham

2 Tbsp bacon fat

3 cloves garlic

1 sprig parsley, chopped

1 sprig dill, chopped

1 C sour cream


1. Prepare a broth using the beef, half the broth veg., 1 onion, crushed peppercorns, bay leaves and two quarts of water, add salt to season.

2. Simmer for 1 1/2 hours and then strain, saving both the broth and the meat.

3. Braise the beetroot in butter or fat skimmed from the broth, seasoning with salt and a splash of vinegar. Add some of the broth and simmer until cooked.

4. Chop the remaining broth veg and saute them in butter with the remaining onions.

5. Slice and simmer the cabbage in some of the broth for about 1/2 an hour. Then add the beetroot, sauted veg and chopped (boiled) potatos, kidney beans, chopped tomatoes and diced ham. Simmer until cooked thoroughly.

6. Mix the flour with some of the broth in a seperate bowl then add slowly to the borscht, mixing in throroughly.

7. Crush the garlic and mis with the bacon fat and chopped parsley and let steep in the soup for at least 15 minutes.

8. Chop the beef in to small pieces and add to the soup.

9. Season with salt and vinegar and sprinkle with dill. Place a tablespoon of sour cream on each helping when serverd.

There are ways to make this that can shorten the time and save some money to make it, like using pre-made beef broth, but this is for those who like that made-from-scratch taste.



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