I got into making my own plant-based meats a few years ago, mostly because the options available in the markets at the time were A) expensive; B) hard to find; and C) not very good. B and C have mostly been rectified in the last few years, so I find myself buying more of that and making less of my own (proving that time is money).
However, I had at one point stocked up my freezer with a lot of the homemade stuff, so 8-38: Brandy Two-Pepper Beef Steak is another one of those recipes where I was using up what was left of that stash.
It’s been challenging to figure out how to tackle these meat-focused recipes when I don’t really eat it anymore, so a lot of these have ended up being more “adaptations” rather than full replications of the given recipe. There’s so many cooking travesties on social media and the internet these days–this feels like a drop in the bucket at this point.
To start off 2023, here’s a follow-up to an entry I wrote almost 7 years ago–better late than never, I always say. 19-17: Butter, Margarine, and Oils II is the sequel to 19-16: Butter, Margarine, and Oils I–I had promised back then that I’d write it, I just didn’t think it’d take me that long to do it. You’ll see why this one took so much longer than the first one once you get into it.
To give you an idea of why this one took so much longer: it actually gets more into the different types of oils and fats–the first one was more of a brief overview of the concept.
After the jump, I’ll give some links to Simply Delicious recipes that use these different types of oils. We’ll also take a look at the back of the card, which goes into more detail about different types of fats (butter, margarine, lard, etc.).
Today, I have the last unmade Group 01 recipe in my possession to share with you today, 1-23: Pita Pockets. They’re essentially sandwiches with two sorts of filling, both very 1980s/”light”.
One of my favorite restaurants is called Pita Pockets–I’ve been going there since I was in high school (over 20 years…eeek) and it’s one of the places I try to stop at when I find myself back in Southern California. Their pita sandwiches are very different from what we’ve got here today (and theirs are WAY better).
I remember pitas being a big deal in the 1980s-1990s, so it’s not surprising that they were included in this recipe collection. They’re still super popular today, but they’re not as “new” of a concept. Speaking of new, this one came from the NEW book, hence why I wasn’t aware until relatively recently that Simply Delicious even had a pita sandwich recipe.
Fish kebabs are probably not high on your Christmas dinner idea list (unless you’re reading from the Southern Hemisphere), but that doesn’t mean that you still can’t file 11-24: Salmon and Halibut Kebabs away for when it warms up a bit. Or if you’re not crazy like us and still grilling outdoors in late December, you can do this one inside on the broiler as well.
I know, I probably can’t convince you to eat grilled fish in the middle of winter. But like I said–save this one for spring/summer when it warms up. It’s a perfect light meal for a warm night where you don’t want to heat up the kitchen.
Minestrone soup has a few specific memories for me: I remember there always being cans of it in our pantry when I was a kid, and all of my favorite Italian restaurants growing up still have it on the menu. My dad was a big minestrone fan–both of those memories are tied pretty closely to him.
3-6: Minestrone comes from the new book, and it’s not surprising that Simply Delicious had a recipe for it–they tend to have their own versions of most of the “classics”.
I’m not sure I’d suggest serving this in what look like miniature barrels in the picture above (imagine trying to clean those). However, the colder weather is coming soon, and this recipe is a good (and cheap) way to meal-prep, eat your veggies, and stay warm all at the same time.
Happy New Year! I recently posted about finding a NEW (to me) Simply Delicious book at a local thrift store, so we’ll start this new year off with the first recipe I’m going to cover from that batch of new recipes, 2-7: Coleslaw. A lot of these recipes fill “gaps” in the collection I already had, and this one is no exception. Coleslaw is a pretty well-known dish, and it’s probably one of the only instances where I enjoy cabbage.
Simply Delicious suggests you can eat coleslaw with just about anything, and they may not be too far off with that claim. Not only can you eat it with a sandwich, you can even put it IN the sandwich.
I had intended on using the entry for 2-19: Country Bean Salad to make the tired joke about how no one likes bean salad or the person who brings it to a party. And to point out how it was always a skip for me at the salad bar (RIP salad bars/buffets, I will REALLY miss you).
But there’s got to be a reason why “bean salad” is still a thing. Someone must still like it, for it still to exist. And not just in an ironic hipster “I like it specifically because it’s uncool” way. Maybe the vegans? I eat mostly vegan, and it’s still a no-go for me.
Simply Delicious says that this particular variation of bean salad is “typically French”, but I can’t find too many references online that specifically corroborate that claim. I did find a fancy version of this dish done by one of the Top Chefs that might be worth looking at, if you’re interested in bringing this recipe into the 21st century.
Apparently it was part of a particularly infamous (red) wedding meal in Game of Thronesas well. I watched GoT, but the food on the table wasn’t exactly the focus of that scene, so I must have missed it.
Even if it’s been on TV, it’s still not that appetizing to me. But again: someone must be into this stuff, so if it’s you, read on.
We’ve covered lasagna dishes on this site before, and 13-15: Vegetarian Lasagna introduces yet another variation of the traditional dish by eschewing tomatoes completely. This version is similar to the Stouffer’s Vegetable Lasagna that my aunt used to bring to dinners all the time as a “homemade dish”. This has no tomato sauce, instead going for cheese and spinach layered between lasagna noodles.
There’s also onions and olives in there as well (I LOVE olives), as well as…chili sauce? I’m not sure why they thought chili sauce was a good addition to this recipe, but at least you can adjust it based on preference.
Feeling a bit of déjà vu? Maybe you’ve seen 1-31: Crab Cocktail before, or maybe you haven’t. I was doing some recent experimentation on the backend of my website, and long story short: I needed to do a rollback to an earlier version and this one got deleted. So I’m reposting/rewriting it again–however, you’ll miss whatever witty remarks I included with the first version.
I remember saying something about this being a good option for a meal instead of an appetizer (since there’s no parties allowed), and that you should picture yourself eating it near the coast with the breeze in your hair, since between COVID and wildfires, I don’t know if we’re ever getting to leave the house again.