Category Archives: Recipe

GARLIC BREAD (LONG & SHORT VERSIONS)

I can’t believe I can’t find the post I wrote down on how to make Garlic Bread. So, here are two ways to make it.

GARLIC BREAD (QUICK)

INGREDIENTS:

One loaf of Italian or French Bread

Butter (softened)

Garlic powder

DIRECTIONS:

Slice the bread lengthwise. Spread a thin layer of butter on the bread. Use enough butter as if you were going to eat the bread with just butter. Sprinkle on the garlic powder to taste. Not too much even if you love garlic. Remember its still just powder and this is the quick version. Toast bread under broiler (butter side up). Until golden brown. Slice and serve warm.

GARLIC BREAD (TRADITIONAL)

Ingredients:

ONE LOAF ITALIAN BREAD

2 cloves garlic (minced)

1 stick butter

Mozzarella cheese (shredded) (Optional)

DIRECTIONS:

Slice bread lengthwise. Melt the butter in a small pot. Add the minced garlic to melted butter and cook over low heat for one minute. Brush or carefully spoon the melted butter and garlic across the bread evenly. Brown bread under broiler until golden brown. Serve warm.

Optional cheese version: After toasting bread, sprinkle cheese on top and return to broiler. Leave until just melted. Serve warm.

Now you have the long and the short version. I learned the long version in my high school cooking class from a fellow classmate of Italian descent, who by the way was appalled when I first suggested we use garlic powder to make garlic bread. That was the way I, a man of Irish decent learned from my sister growing up. Anyhow, the cheese thing I got from my sister in-law who is an amazing cook and baker!

Eat well, live long, and make lots of money! (isn’t that what Spock says?)

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

Spaghetti with Zucchini

            Last night was Spaghetti & Meatballs again. Boring I know. Lunch was so boring I don’t even remember what I ate. I heated up the meatballs and sauce. I set the water with salt and oil on the stove to boil for the spaghetti. I made garlic bread and for a vegetable, I made Zucchini. I even made a tossed salad, but no one ate it.

ZUCCHINI

INGREDIENTS:

1 Zucchini

1 Tablespoon Olive oil

1-2 Tablespoons Butter

Sliced garlic or 1/8 tsp powder

Salt pepper

DIRECTIONS:

Cut the zucchini in half, lengthwise. Slice the zucchini into ¼ inch slices. Add oil to the pan with fresh sliced garlic.  Cook over medium-high heat until pan gets hot. DO NOT let the garlic get brown. ICK. Add zucchini to pan. Add salt and pepper. If using garlic powder, add it now. Cook until tender and serve hot.

Yup, not an impressive night. However, we ate while watching the Disney channel. Then, after watching the movie Rayna, I decided I needed dessert and asked Sam if would run out to the store and get some “Slice and Bake cookies and MILK.” You know the ones. It’s Nestle’s Toll House cookie dough in a tube.  He returned with the goods and I baked those puppies up as we watched Community on Netflix. This is my new favorite show. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still watching Laugh-In on Prime, but this is funny as shit and Sam watches it with me. We were laughing are asses off last night.

Well, that is all for today. If you like my posts, please share them. I could always use more readers and more feedback.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

GRILLED ZUCCHINI

Grilled Zucchini is just one of my favorite vegetables to have with grilled chicken or even a steak, until the fresh garden string beans appear. Then, I make the switch to those yummy green vegetables. Yes, I have a recipe for fresh string beans and as soon as I make it, you will get it. We also need a lesson on Charcoal grilling to be posted soon. I think it’s a lost art. Besides, I could use Kingsford as a sponsor, just saying, if you’re reading this Kingsford people! I could use free Charcoal! They make all different types like apple wood now too!

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED

Long BBQ Tongs

Knife cutting board

Zip top bag

BBQ

INGREDIENTS:

1 to 2 Zucchini

Olive oil

Garlic powered

Salt

Pepper

(Italian salad dressing) Optional

DIRECTIONS:

            Wash and cut the zucchini into quarters. Marinate in a zip top bag that has a 1/4 cup of Italian salad dressing in it. If you’re in a time crunch and can’t wait for that vegetable to marinate, or would like a more mild flavor, then coat with olive oil and sprinkle on some garlic powder, salt, and pepper.

            Grill on a preheated gas BBQ or if using charcoal, wait until the coals turn just turn completely gray. Turn over the zucchini onto each one of the three sides, cooking each side for two minutes per side. Remove from grill to plate and serve.

I will keep grilling until it rains, then I’ll move inside. Until then, be well, stay healthy, and enjoy LIFE!

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

Grilled chicken

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED

Long BBQ Tongs

Knife cutting board

Zip top bag

BBQ

INGREDIENTS:

4 Chicken breasts (trimmed and sliced thin)

Salad dressing (Italian or Greek)

DIRECTIONS:

            Trim the fat off boneless skinless chicken breasts. Slice in half to make thinner. Not too thin, or they will dry out on the grill. Place in zip top bag. Add salad Italian Salad Dressing or Greek Salad Dressing and marinate from one to 24 hours.

            To cook: Preheat grill. Clean and oil grate with paper towels, tongs and olive oil. Try NOT to set the paper towels on fire. Make sure the burns are on low or off if need be. You can always relight it. Add marinated chicken cutlets to the grill. Do not close the lid…the chicken will cook too fast and dry out before getting the lovely grill marks. Turn the chicken 90 degrees after 4 or 5 minutes. After 5 more minutes, flip and cook on opposite side. Turn the chicken 90 degrees after 4 or 5 minutes. Cook until there is no pink in the center of the chicken and remove to plate. I can tell the chicken is done by the “feel” of it. If the chicken is still mushy when I pick it up, it is still raw. You can always test with a instant read thermometer. It should read 160 degrees.

Remove to a plate and serve with rice and grill vegetables

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

Ma’s Famous Cocktail Sauce

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED

Bowl

Fork

INGREDIENTS:

1 Cup ketchup

2 tsp. Lemon Juice (for shrimp or seafood)

½ jar horseradish

7 drops Tabasco

1 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce (for grilled sausage)

DIRECTIONS:

In a small Tupperware bowl, mix together ketchup, lemon juice, and horseradish. Add just a few drops of Tabasco sauce and taste with celery or a cooked shrimp. Add more according to taste. You should not be able to distinguish the Tabasco from the rest of the ingredients. If you prefer hotter or milder sauce, add more or less horseradish. My family has made an art out of this simple recipe. This is, as it is, in the original form that I remember as a kid growing up. The maker almost always modifies it.  My sister-law used to add a lot of Tabasco to make it hot enough for my oldest brother. My other brother love to add Hot Chinese mustard to heat it up and I of course could not help myself.  I’ve used Wasabi, whereas my sister loves nothing better than to be the taste tester and quality control supervisor.

Serving suggestion: Shrimp, Crab meat, celery, carrots, and of course thin sausage cooked on the barb-b-que with lots of cold beer to wash it down.  

From all of my family to all of yours…enjoy your food and enjoy ALL of life!

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

GRILLED SAUSAGE

Last night, I decided to break out the newish BBQ and grill. I made grilled chicken, grilled Zucchini, and grilled sausage with Ma’s Famous Cocktail Sauce. I also had a beer or two and listened to music. I set up a radio in the garage and attached a couple of speakers.

            I started with the sausage. That takes the longest to cook. I started cooking the ring sausage on high and when the fire flared up too high, I would turn down the heat. You must be careful not to try to cook the sausage too quickly or it will split open before it’s done. If you cook the sausage too slowly, it will dry out. Do you see now how that pancake lesson keeps coming back to remind us about timing and temperature?

            INGREDIENTS:

            One ring of sausage

            Olive oil

            DIRECTIONS:

            Preheat grill. Cut the sausage into 8 to 10 inch lengths. Using a paper towel and long tongs, apply a thin coat of olive oil to the grate just before cooking. Lay on the sausage in line with the grate. This prevents them from rolling. I do the same thing when making “HOT DAWGS”.  Turn the usage every 3 minutes or so. Keep and eye on them as the flare-ups sometimes happen fast from the fat and you could wind up with sausage that is burned beyond recognition if you walk away. Turn, turn turn (like the song says) until finally, after god knows how long (my internal timer says two beers) they are a nice rich golden brown like the color of my dining room table on the homepage.

Remove cooked sausage to a plate and cut up into bite size pieces. Service with cocktail sauce.

Enjoy!! Have Fun!! and “PARTY ON DUDE!” – From Bill and Teds Excellent Adventure.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

RED WINE VINIAGRETTE

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED

Cruet Bottle

Measuring spoons

INGREDIENTS:

1       cup Filippo Berio olive oil (yellow label)

¼      cup red wine vinegar

2       tablespoons water

½      teaspoons sugar

¼      teaspoons Gulden’s Spicy Brown mustard

1/8    teaspoons Italian seasoning (Marjoram, Thyme, Rosemary, Savory, Sage, Oregano and Basil)

1/8    teaspoons garlic powder

1/8    teaspoons onion powder

1/8    teaspoons parsley

1/8    Salt

1/8    Black Pepper

DIRECTIONS:

Add dry ingredients to a cruet bottle. Add vinegar, water, olive oil and mustard.  Shake well.  Let stand for one hour for best taste.

TOSSED SALAD

COOKING UTENSILS NEEDED

Large Bowl

Paring Knife

Salad spinner

Can drainer/strainer (for olives)

Airtight container (ie. Tupperware)

INGREDIENTS:

1 head of Iceberg and/or romaine lettuce

2 cups of salad greens

2 Tomatoes

1 Cucumber

½ can black olives (whole small pitted)

¼ small red onions

Balsamic Vinaigrette  

DIRECTIONS:

Wash lettuce and dry in colander or salad spinner.  Place lettuce and salad greens in large bowl.  Cut the tomatoes into quarters or eighths depending on their size and add to bowl. You can peel or not peel a cucumber. Slice it thinly and add to bowl.  Drain a half a can of black olives (pour off only half of juice) and spoon olives to bowl.  Slice a ¼ of a small red onion and add to bowl.  Add salad dressing, then toss and serve. Place remaining olives and juice into airtight container and store in fridge.

Note: This is a VERY versatile recipe.  Remove any ingredient or add others like thinly sliced radish, broccoli, artichoke hearts or hard boiled eggs (sliced or chopped).

The Drunken Chef (Russ)

MEATBALL HERO PARMESAN (party sandwich)

            This is yummy. but I would not usually serve this at a party. I think the bread would get too mushy, but maybe you, my fine readers would leave a comment or two on if it works for you. I usually make this on a much smaller scale with smaller Italian bread and eat it for lunch.

            GADGETS:

            Bread Knife

            Cutting Board

            INGREDIENTS:

            Ma’s Meatballs

            One pound of whole milk mozzarella (Polly-O brand)

            Fresh baked Italian bread

            Slice open the Italian bread lengthwise. Lightly butter and garlic powder the bread. Toast it under the broiler. This will help prevent the bread from getting too soggy from the spaghetti sauce.

Melt the mozzarella on the top piece of bread under the broiler. I heated the meatballs in Ma’s Spaghetti Sauce in a pot on the stove.

            To transport and serve it, I am using a jellyroll pan and aluminum foil. I put a cutting board under it so it can be cut up upon my arrival at Jennifer’s school.

            Serve warm and with a Tray of Salad.

           -The Drunken Chef (Russ)

© Russ Ahrens and The Magic of a Perfect Pairing, 2021

CHICKEN HERO PARMESAN (party sandwich)

            This is not something I make often. I personally prefer the plain warm chicken cutlet sandwich with lettuce that I can add mayo to. I see this whole chicken parmesan thing as being too messy to eat at work or a party, but it is what Jennifer wanted so *POOF* it’s being done. I am not saying that I always get things done that quickly. She has been asking me to get the hallway painted for a while now. That is just not as much fun as cooking! Anyway. you’re not here to read about my house chores, you are here for a sandwich recipe.

            GADGETS:

            Bread Knife

            Cutting Board

            INGREDIENTS:

            Chicken Cutlets

            One pound of whole milk mozzarella (Polly-O brand)

            Fresh baked Italian bread

            Slice open the Italian bread lengthwise. Lightly butter and garlic powder the bread. Toast it under the broiler. This will help prevent the bread from getting too soggy from the spaghetti sauce.

Melt the mozzarella on the top piece of bread under the broiler. I heated the cutlets up in the oven in a pan with Ma’s Spaghetti Sauce.

            To transport and serve it, I am using a jellyroll pan and aluminum foil. I put a cutting board under it so it can be cut up upon my arrival at Jennifer’s school.

            Serve warm and with a Tray of Salad.

            -The Drunken Chef (Russ)