Sunday, December 4, 2011

Crockpot Mashed Potatoes

I made these mashed potatoes when we had friends over a few weeks ago.  They were easy to make and I made them in advance.  The advantage of that, of course, is being able to spend time with your guests and not cooking while they are visiting.  I wasn't overly impressed with these but my guests loved them.  I just prefer regular old mashed potatoes.  In the future, I am going to try the mashed cauliflower which is, at least supposed to be healthier than mashed potatoes.  Try them if you don't mind something different going on with your mashed potatoes.  

Crockpot Mashed Potatoes
By Linda Larsen, Guide

Make these mashed potatoes ahead of time, refrigerate for up to 2 days, then reheat and keep hot in the crockpot.

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours, 55 minutes

5 lbs. potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened (Greek yogurt)
1 cup sour cream
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 beaten egg
4 Tbsp. butter
1/3 cup chopped chives (optional)

Cook the potatoes in large pot of boiling salted water until they are tender, about 20 minutes.  Drain well and return to dry pot.  Shake over low heat for about 1 minute.

Then mash until there are no lumps. Beat in the cream cheese, sour cream, onion powder, salt, pepper and egg.  Place potatoes in a greased 9x13" baking dish. Melt butter and drizzle over the potatoes. Cool for 20 minutes, cover and refrigerate up to 3 days.

Take potatoes out of refrigerator about 3-1/2 hours before serving time.  Place in crockpot.  Cover and cook on low heat for 3-4 hours, stirring once or twice.  They can be held an additional 30 minutes or more.
Makes 12-15 servings.


The Creative Cook

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Brisket in Sweet and Sour Sauce

No, I am not Jewish but I sure do love some good Jewish food!  I really miss the knishes I used to get in NYC.  In fact, I ate one every Friday for lunch at my Catholic High School in Queens, New York.  I can't get them here in Maryland.  The ones I have eaten since I moved here twenty years ago have been poor examples of the knish.  For instance, they are round not square.  They aren't deep fried which is probably much better for you but they taste awful. Since I can't do anything about my knish problem short of taking a weekend trip to NYC, I decided to find the best brisket recipe I could.  This one rated number one on a local television station's search for the best brisket recipe.   I made this for a group of 10 people and everyone loved it except for one of my son's friends.  

Brisket in Sweet and Sour Sauce
Prep Time:  15 Mins.
Cook Time:  3 hrs. 30 Mins.
Total Time:  3 hrs. 45 Mins.

1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
1 two-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
6 large cloves garlic
¼ cup Dijon mustard
½ cup dry red wine
1-1/2 cups Coca-Cola or ginger ale
1 cup ketchup
¼ cup honey
¼ cup cider vinegar
¼ cup soy sauce
½ cup olive oil
1/3 teaspoon ground cloves
1 Tablespoon coarsely ground pepper or to taste
1 six to seven pound first-cut brisket, rinsed and patted thoroughly dry


Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

Place onion, ginger, garlic, Dijon mustard, red wine, cola or ginger ale, ketchup, cider vinegar, soy sauce, olive oil, cloves, and pepper into a food processor or blender , and process with steel blade until smooth.

Place brisket, fat side up, into a heavy baking pan just large enough to hold it, and pour sauce over it.  Cover tightly and bake for 2 hours.  Turn brisket over and bake uncovered for one more hour or until fork-tender.  Cool, cover brisket and refrigerate overnight in cooking pan.

The next day, transfer brisket to a cutting board, cut off fat and cut with a sharp knife against grain, to desired thickness.  Remove any congealed fat from sauce and bring to a boil on top of stove.

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.  Taste sauce to see if it needs reducing.  If so, boil down for a few minutes or as needed.  Return meat to sauce and warm in oven for 20 minutes.  Serve Warm.

Yield:  12 Servings

Recipe Source:  Levana’s Table: Kosher Cooking for Everyone by Levana Kirschenbaum


The Creative Cook