Let's talk about onions...

1997ThunderbirdLXV6

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...and carrots, and zucchini, and so forth.

Or in more general terms, let's share some easy to make culinary concoctions. Positively not chef-approved; just wing it.

I'll start.

Lentil Eintopf

  • One bag of lentils, wash, rinse, soak for a few hours, drain.
  • Bring water to a boil in a large pot, add lentils. They'll need a steady boil for a good 45 minutes.
  • Cut baby carrots into small cubes, add to pot about 15 minutes in.
  • Sauté cut onions, plenty garlic, and zucchini in frying pan. Add to pot for the final 20 minutes or so.
  • Add one jar of your favorite tomato sauce to the pot.
  • Season with whatever you like, such as cumin, coriander, salt, pepper, etc.
Of course, you can also add your choice of sausage, seitan, or whatever protein you like. Ideally sauté first and add to the pot during the final 10 minutes or so. The Eintopf should be a thick soup, so gauge the amount of water accordingly.

Enjoy.
 
Easy, eh... hmm.

My family calls this "slumgullion" - I guess my grandfather started making it back in the 50s. I usually make 1/2 this recipe, and even then that's enough for 4-6 servings - it's a ton of food!

1 1/2 lbs. Lean Ground Beef
3 c. Elbow Macaroni
2 Cans Tomato Soup
1 Can Diced Tomatoes
1 Green Pepper
1 c. Water
1/2 t. Salt
1/2 t. Pepper
1/2 t. Basil
1/2 t. Parsley Flakes
1-2 t. Onion Flakes
1 c. Shredded Cheddar Cheese

Cook elbow macaroni until al dente (usually about 7 minutes). Add 1 T salt to water or as desired; drain and set aside when cooked.

While macaroni cooks, brown meat over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add salt, pepper, basil, parsley and onion flakes while meat is browning. After meat is cooked, drain off excess fat.

Dice the green pepper and sautee with the meat and spice mix. Add the diced tomatoes, tomato soup and water. Stir in the macaroni and let simmer 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Evenly distribute the cheddar cheese over the macaroni-meat sauce mix, cover and lower burner temperature to a low heat. Allow cheese to melt before serving.
 
I can't eat onions; they cause severe indigestion, unless cooked clear.Sauteed onions are fine. I cook with onion powder, that way no issues. I eat a lot of ground beef; I cook it with taco seasoning. 3 lbs at a pop, then make tacos, burritos, nachos, or sloppy joes or something using it as a base.
I call mac and cheese with ground beef "cheeseburger in a tub", lol.
 
I can't eat onions; they cause severe indigestion, unless cooked clear.Sauteed onions are fine. I cook with onion powder, that way no issues. I eat a lot of ground beef; I cook it with taco seasoning. 3 lbs at a pop, then make tacos, burritos, nachos, or sloppy joes or something using it as a base.
I call mac and cheese with ground beef "cheeseburger in a tub", lol.
For nachos, cooking the taco meat with the baked beans before tossing in the oven has been a game changer for me. No meat escapes the chip

Quick Pickles

I like to use english cucumber. Cut as shown, or into chips. Throw them into a ziplock. Add
  • 1 TBSP of Soy Sauce
  • 2 TBSP of Rice Vinegar
  • 1 TBSP Sugar
  • 1 TBSP Sesame Oil
Squeeze out as much air as you can and zip it up, massage it a bit and toss it in the fridge for about 20-24 hours. Rotate and massage periodically, usually when you're in the fridge anyway.

Really easy to make. Great snack with a beer session. I wish I could find a really shallow glass dish I can seal, to produce more

1696703856163.png
 
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Here's one of my favorite instapot recipes that has a surprisingly deep flavor profile despite very few ingredients:

You can skip even more steps by just buying raw italian sausage but its so easy to make (and so much healthier since you aren't throwing any preservatives in).

Zucchini Sausauge Bolognese
Adapted from:
https://nomnompaleo.com/instant-pot-zucchini-bolognese
https://www.tastesoflizzyt.com/homemade-italian-sausage-seasoning/

Sausage Ingredients
2LB Ground pork, beef, or chicken
2t dried parsley (or 2t more Italian seasoning)
2t Italian Seasoning
1.5t black pepper
0.5t paprika
1t red pepper flakes
2t salt
1t garlic
OPTIONAL: 1/2t fennel, 1t minced onions

Steps
Mix in bowl and set aside. Can be done in advance


Bolognese Ingredients:
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, or ghee
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 1 pound bulk Italian sausage (see above)
- 1½ pounds zucchini, diced into ½-inch pieces
- Additional Zucchini or two for Zoodles or pasta
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- Magic Mushroom Powder or Diamond Crystal brand kosher salt (with added umami boosters detailed in the instructions).
GUNN: I just ground some dried shitake mushrooms to make my own powder but Trader Joes sells powdered mushrooms if that's what you want
- Also, i add a some fish sauce for an added umami kick (fun random fact: the first ketchup was made by romans and was basically modern asian fish sauce). Use the one that looks like soy sauce (any thai brand like Squid, or Red Boat), not the grey unfiltered paste that the vietnamese use (mam nem).
- Juice from ½ lemon

Steps
- Saute onions in oil/fat/ghee
- Add sausage (1LB fine). Add extra oil/fat/ghee if made from ground chicken. Brown
- Add zucchini & minced garlic
- Add 1t mushroom powder or salt. Also, you can a few drops fish sauce for more umami
- Cook for 35min under HIGH PRESSURE
-While sauce is cooking, julienne or spiralizer zucchini to make zoodles or boil noodles
These can be sautéed in the pot or separately.
- After pressure release, add additional mushroom powder, salt, or freshly ground pepper plus lemon juice to taste.
- Ladle on top of noodles and serve immediately
 
I just love onions! I put them in my cereal.

I usually use red or white onions in most everything. But I also like to add frozen pearl onions to all sorts of dishes like chili, stroganoff, most soups.
 
The amusement park I worked at in the '70's had really sweet onions in the self-serve condiment trays at the food stands, but just for about a week and a half in Mid-May. I'd make it a point to buy burgers then, just to load 'em up tons of onions. I still don't know what kind of onions and why they were only available for a short time each year.
 
The amusement park I worked at in the '70's had really sweet onions in the self-serve condiment trays at the food stands, but just for about a week and a half in Mid-May. I'd make it a point to buy burgers then, just to load 'em up tons of onions. I still don't know what kind of onions and why they were only available for a short time each year.
Were they Vidalia sweet onions?
 
Maybe, but much sweeter than the sweet onions available at the supermarket all year long that look like Vidalia and I don't remember they're actually labeled as Vidalia. And they use PLU code 4166 (generic sweet onion) rather than 4159 specifically for Vidalia. Due to the seasonal availability, I wonder if they could have been local, but seems unlikely for New England. Guess I'll have to hunt down some real ones next time I go to Georgia.
 

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