Wednesday, May 14, 2014

So it's been a long time.......

It's been a long time since I have posted anything, but since I didn't have much of an audience, I didn't think many would miss me for a while.  A bunch of changes, I am still a personal chef for a couple clients and I work part time at a local goat farm making goat cheese. My life had gotten crazy busy with the end of school stuff with my kids and changes. You know, just life. ;). 

But I will try to start blogging again. I still take a ton of pictures of my food and post on Facebook about it, but I will try harder to fit writing my blog into all that. 

See you soon with some fun stuff!

Happy Eating!!
--chef Jaelanne 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sea Monster Pasta

I took the cute idea from Pinterest about making hot dogs look like Octopi and made them for my kids. 

They liked it so much I decide to expand the idea.  
I thought it would be great to make little sausages into Octopi and then have shrimp and it would be sea creatures. Then it hit me: Gumbo.  It has shrimp and sausage.  So off I went.  I didn't want traditional Gumbo since it wouldn't carry well in my kids lunch box, so I opted for pasta. 

Cooked the pasta first and chilled it. (Toss with a little olive oil to prevent sticking)

Started with carrots, celery, onions, orange sweet peppers, and sweet peas. 

A hot skillet and butter.  

Sauté all the chopped veggies in butter. 

Add garlic, gumbo file, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper and the shrimp. (I used precooked shrimp since it was on sale)

When it was all mixed I added some beer to it. 

Bring to a boil and let it cook for a while. 

I started cutting my sausages into my little Octopi.  Since they are tougher an smaller then hot dogs it was a little harder but not bad. 

I tossed them in as I went so they could cook. 

When the sausages were fully soaked in and the sauce had reduced I added some flour (or you can add cornstarch) and brought it back to a boil and let it thicken. I got out my pasta I cooked first and chilled. 

Notice the sauce is thicker. You do not want it too thick since we are mixing it with noodles and you want enough sauce I soak into the noodles to make it all blend well. 

Done.  ;).   
It was a little spicy, so next time I will have to go a little lighter on the spices. ;)

Happy eating!  

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A client of a different kind....

I was recently approached and asked about doing food prep for a month.  Frozen individual meals to replace the frozen dinners that they had been eating. 
A challenge.  And a learning experience it was. ;). 

Edit:  I forgot to add that they wanted lunch and dinner for work days. Along with a dessert.  My client works 12 hr shifts so doesn't cook when they get home.  They requested a large lunch and dessert to take to work and a smaller simple dinner for when they get home at night.   This is what I made. ;). 

First day was meat prep

And I made lasagna. 

I also did a slow roasted pork carnitas for lunches and enchiladas. 

Seared the pork first

Then added the chipotle peppers on adobe sauce and veggies. 

Made enchiladas with some and lunches with the rest. 

Made brownies.  Had to taste test them of course. ;)

And the Reese's pieces cookies too. 

After 3 days of prep and portioning I was  ready to deliver the food. 

BBQ chicken quarters, sweet potatoes, broccoli. 

Mustard pork chops, broccoli and sweet potatoes. 

Skirt steak, mashed potatoes, and peas. 

Turkey, green beans, and mashed potatoes. 

Beef lasagna. 

Pork carnitas with rice and beans. Green bean with corn salsa. 

Pork enchiladas with rice and beans. 

Beef spaghetti. 

Chicken Tetrazzini. 

Turkey crepes.  (My moms recipe). ;)

And desserts. 

  This was my first time making meals to reheat later from frozen.  I chose to use the food saver and bags to help it maintain the highest level of freshness I could.  

So far, my client seems to me enjoying the food.  I hope I get a full report by the end of their month and to see if they want to so it again. ;)

Happy cooking to you all!  

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

One year ago.....

It had been one year ago today that I started my blog.  My two older kids had just started school and for the first time in a long time I was a stay at home mom of just one during the day.  To keep myself busy and to further my knowledge and love of food and nutrition I started this blog.  

For this one I wanted to share the school   lunches I have made for the first couple days of school.   I have been seeing all this fun stuff about bento boxes and had to dive in!  Such fun ideas!  

I have started simple and to get more creative as I go.  First I needed some cute bento boxes.  

I got them these cute reusable bags for snacks as well. The containers open with two levels. 

The bottom one is sectioned and the top is not. 

The first day of school lunch I played with some of my cutters and made shaped grilled cheese and turkey/ham sandwiches with some fresh fruit and veggies in the bottom. A flavored honey stick on top and a chocolate piece on the bottom with 2 quarters in each for milk at school.  They also have little refillable water bottles. 

Second day of school was fun. They asked for pancakes. ;).  So I have them pancakes, sausage, fruit, and one got fruit snacks and the other a little chocolate piece. ;)

Tonight I let them help me make their own.   My oldest chose Mexican rice and beans left over from tacos with a tortillas. Ten some carrot and broccoli.  She got a Swiss roll and fruit snacks. 

My other one had a pinwheel style sandwich with yogurt, veggies, Swiss roll and fruit snacks. 

So far it been fun.  Which I guess is the only way to survive a whole school year of making two lunches a day.  ;)

Happy lunch time!!   And thank you for one whole year!!!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Dinner of necessity. ;)

As I stated in my last blog, our party this last weekend left y house with an abundance of chips, dips, and soda.  Normally things I do not stock my house with, but since I have it I refuse to waste it.  Dinner, of course, would just have to use what I could.  

First, I took a recipe floating around Facebook and ran with it.  

Potatoes. Diced and in an oven safe dish

Next, ranch dip

Add diced onions and some spices 
Mix, mix, mix.....
Add cheese, because that is essential. And mix more....

Add to potatoes.  
 Mix up, out on lid or cover it with foil, put in over

Set timer.   

Next, get your meat out. 

The stuff in the fridge! 

This is chicken with a little bit of BBQ sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and Whataburger creamy pepper sauce. (Don't ask, I just had some in my fridge)

Also I did some fish:
This is tilapia with spinach dip on it and Pablo tea crumbs.   Don't judge, it sounded great. ;)

By this time you should have the timer go off for your potatoes.  Take out of oven an toss them gently.  The sauce with melt and sink to the bottom. You want it mixed well. Re cover and put back in oven.  Add the meat on the top rack ad the potatoes in the bottom rack.  

Set the timer again.  Another 15 minutes.

Edit:  you should wait and not put your meat in when I did. My meat is done and the potatoes have at least another 15 minutes (they were still kinda crunchy). 

I took out the meat, covered it with foil, and left it on the warm stove top.  Moved the potatoes to the top rack (bottom was a bit too toasty) and started another 15 minute timer.  

Another note: cut your potatoes smaller then I did or allow an hour for this to cook!!!   Still not done after 3 fifteen minute timers set and the potatoes stirred.   Put it back in for another 15 minutes.  *sigh, I'm hungry.  

After another 20 minutes the potatoes were STILL crunchy.  What the snapple????   
So we ate anyway.  

Must find a way to fix the potatoes issue. They oven roast in less then 20 minutes on a sheet tray.  This was just plain crazy.  

Well, I hope you liked the ideas.  The fish turned out nice a creamy and the chicken had a good kick.  The potatoes tasted great and the green beans added a touch.