Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Best EGGROLLS ever...oh my gosh, I could eat these everyday!

There was one thing my sister, brother and I always looked forward to when my mom was cooking dinner...that was Chinese Food!!
Can I just say YUM!!!
Two reasons we looked forward to this was was so dang good!! Best Chinese food every!!  No joke!!  Second reason was LEFT OVERS!!  Yes left overs!  You see mom would take left over eggrolls (cuz mom made a tone of them) and put them in our lunch for school!!  Left over eggrolls were better than cookies, Twinkies, cup cakes, chips and what ever treat mom would put in our lunch!! I'm serious!   I'll let you in on a little eggrolls never made it to school!! WHY because I ate them on the bus!  Good thing mom sent a sandwich and fruit because I couldn't help myself, as soon as I was out of site of my mom, I would eat my eggrolls!!
And now my kid and hubby LOVE them just as much as my sister, brother and I did!  I think if my kids could eat eggrolls every day! Pretty sure I could too! 

I've met people who don't really like Eggrolls but really like these!!

Of course you can't forget the sweet and sour sauce with your eggrolls
Start by making the filling and chill for a bit
Place filling diagonally on wrap 
Fold bottom corner over filling; roll snugly half-way to cover filling 
Fold in both sides snugly against filling like an envelope; if you need to moisten edges of the flap with water to make them stick.  Most times it will stick on its own 
Roll wrap up and seal top corner 
Lay flap-side down until ready to cook 
Fry in either a wok or a deep fryer; making sure oil is hot but not too hot to burn.  Heat to 375
Time to eat...eggrolls will be hot in the center  
What to do with left over wraps...slice them up  
Fry them in oil  
Cover with either cinnamon and sugar or just sugar...what a great treat
Sweet and Sour Sauce...easy!!
(I have to be honest...I very rarely measure these ingredients...after so many years of making them I just know how much to add)
1/2 to 1 cup of bean sprouts (I use fresh but you can use can just drain)
1/2 to a cup of finely chopped cooked pork
1/4 cup finely chopped cooked shrimp
 (I buy the 5 oz cans and use the whole can, make sure you drain the can and chop)
1/4 cup water chestnuts finely chopped
(again I buy the 5 oz can and use the whole can, just drain)
1 tlb finely chopped green onion
1 slightly beaten egg
1 tlb cooking oil
1 tea soy sauce
1/2 tea sugar
1/4 tea salt
1 pkg of store bought eggroll wraps
Combine the first 11 ingredients; chill.  To assemble egg rolls, place 1 tlb filling near edge of eggroll wrap.  Fold edge over filling; fold in both sides.  Roll up, pressing gently to seal.  In wok that is at least 3 inches deep, heat 1 1/2 inches of oil to 375.  Fry, a few at a time, about 6 minutes, turning once.  Drain on paper towel.  Repeat till all are cooked.  Serve with sweet and sour sauce if desired. 
Also good in lunches cold.  They reheat very well.  You can also use chicken or beef in place of pork. 
Sweet and Sour Sauce
1/4 cup cold water
2 tlb cornstarch
1 cup unsweetened pineapple juice
3 tlb sugar
1/4 cup vinegar
3 tlb ketchup
1 tlb soy sauce
Combine water and cornstarch; set aside.  In a small saucepan, combine remaining ingredients.  Stir over low heat, 3 to 5 minutes.  Stir in cornstarch mixture until sauce thickens slightly, about 2 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  Makes about 1 1/2 cups.
If you use sweetened pineapple juice, omit the sugar.
If you don't want to make the sauce, you can either by sweet and sour sauce at the store or by plum jam and then melt it in a pan...taste good this way also.
Fried Rice
(This is such an easy recipe and so much better than buying a package at the store)
6 to 8 cups of cold cooked rice
2 tlb oil
1/2 to 1 cup chopped cooked meat (chicken, beef, pork, turkey...I personal prefer pork in my fried rice)
2 or 3 scrambled eggs
2 or 3 green onions chopped
opt: about 1 cup chopped cabbage
Soy Sauce
Turn on heat on the wok to about med-hi.  Add oil to hot pan; add onion and cabbage and stir-fry about 1 1/2 minutes.  Add cold rice and stir-fry about 3 minutes.  Add rice and soy sauce to taste (this could be a few tea depending on how much you like).  Add meat if you wish, but heat through about 2 minutes.  If rice seems a little dry add any kind of broth, water or more soy sauce.
A lot of times I make the eggrolls as a meal themselves or with the fried rice but if I have company coming, I will also make a beef and broccoli stir-fry to go along with them.  I'll post that recipe another time.

Whats for dinner tonight...SWISS STEAK...

Growing up my mom was an amazing cook!  We ate very well, especially when it came to those foods we call comfort foods. 
It's funny because I find myself making a lot of these same foods for my family...and of course when I do it brings back so many childhood memories.
One dish my mom made a lot was "SWISS STEAK".
Can I just say YUM!!! 
This really is a very easy recipe...seriously if I can make it...anyone can!!
1 lb boneless beef round steak, cut 3/4 inch thick
2 tb flour
1/4 tea salt
1/4 tea pepper
1 tb cooking oil
1 14-1/2 ounce can diced tomatoes with basil, oregano, and garlic (undrained)
1 small onion, sliced and separated into rings
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup sliced carrots
2 cups hot cooked noodles or mashed potatoes
Trim fat from meat.  Cut into 4 serving size pieces. Combine the flour, salt, and pepper.  With the notched side of a meat mallet, pound flour mixture into meat.
In a large skillet brown meat on both sides in hot oil.  Drain off fat.  Add undrained tomatoes, onion, celery, and carrots.  Bring to boiling; reduce heat.  Simmer, adding water as needed, cover, about 1 1/4 hours or until meat is tender.  Skim off fat.  Serve with noodles or mashed potatoes.
It really was great to always come home from activities to a yummy meal!  So glad my mom taught me how to cook! 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

How do you handle adversity...

A few weeks ago in Sunday School our teacher shared the following with us...I kinda found it interesting so I thought I'd share...

How do you Handle Adversity...

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life.  She did not know how she was going to make it, and wanted to give up.  She was tired of fighting and struggling.  It seemed as one problem was solved a new one arose. 

                Her mother took her to the kitchen.  She filled three pots with water.  In the first pot, she placed a carrot, in the second she placed an egg and the last she placed an herbal tea bag.  She let them sit and boil without saying a word.

                In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners.  She fished the carrot out and placed it in a bowl.  She pulled the egg out and placed it in a bowl.  Then she ladled the herbal tea out and placed it in a bowl. 

                On the counter sat three identical bowls.  Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me what you see?”  “Carrot, egg and herbal tea,” she replied

                Mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots.  She noted that the carrots got soft. 

                She than asked her to take the egg and break it.  After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg.

                Finally, she observed what had become of the herbal tea bag as it had steeped in the boiling water.  “What’s the point, mother?”

                Her mother explained that each of those objects had faced the same adversity – boiling water – but each reacted differently.

                The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting.  However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. 

                The egg had been fragile.  Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened.

                The herbal tea bag was unique, however.  After it was in the boiling water it had changed the water. 

                “Which are you?”  she asked her daughter.  “When trials and adversity knock on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or an herbal tea bag?”

                Think of this: Which am I?

                Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my straight?

                Am I the egg that starts with a passive heart, but changes with the heat?  Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a financial hardship or some other trial and tribulation, have I become hardened and stiff?  Does my shell look the same, but on the inside, am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart?

                Or, am I like the herbal tea?  The tea bag actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain.  When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor.  If you are like the herbal tea bag, when things are at their worst, you become better and change the situation around you.  When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest do you elevate to another level?

                How do you handle adversity?

                Like a CARROT,

                Like an EGG,

                Like an HERBAL TEA BAG?
I know which one I about you?!?  Reading this made me stop and think perhaps there are some changes I need to make in my life!