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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Cook Books

Some people collect cookbooks; they just can't seem to pass one up.  I have always tried to avoid buying cookbooks because they clutter up the kitchen and after a while, it seems like the recipes get repeated.  Still I have a number of cookbooks that were sold for fundraisers and others that were gifts.  I have bought few of them on my own.  One cookbook that should be in everyone's kitchen is "The Joy of Cooking" by Rombauer and Becker.  It is a great reference book and when I need to know how to do something, I look there first.  It also has several great recipes, though it does have a number of strange ones like Broiled Kidneys.  Adventurous as I am, I think I can skip that one.

Simply the best cookbook I have is "Traditions, A Taste Of The Good Life" by the Junior League of Little Rock.  That cookbook has more wonderful recipes than any other I've ever used.  It is worth buying if you can still find it.  We have liked most every recipe from that book that I've tried and many have become family favorites.

I am a sucker for magazines though, and can hardly pass up Paula Deen, Southern Living or a new magazine I discovered, Clean Eating.  This is where I really find most of the dishes I make.  Once I try a recipe and determine that it is worth keeping, I tear it out and put it in my recipe notebook.  My sister took all of my loose recipes once that were once stufed in a file folder and organized them into this notebook for me.  It was one of the nicest things anyone has ever done for me and now I can easily add to it.  Being the foodie that I am, I am constantly finding new recipes that I plan to try.  Sometimes I never get around to it.  Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by all the food I'd like to cook!

I am going to share an old favorite from "The Joy Of Cooking".  After making this dish years ago, I really fell in love with paprika.

Chicken Paprika
Several pieces of chicken, legs, thighs, or breasts
1 Tbsp. of butter
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onions
2 tsp. to 2 Tbsp. sweet Hungarian paprika
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups chicken stock
2 tsp. flour
1 cup sour cream
Melt the butter in a large pot or skillet.  Add oil and heat over medium heat.  Add onions and paprika and simmer till red and glossy.  Then add the salt and chicken stock.  Bring to a boil and add the chicken.  Simmer covered until tender, about an hour.  Stir the flour into the sour cream and mix well.  Stir the sour cream mixture into the chicken and simmer until thickened.  Do not boil.  Serve over rice or noodles.  

Use brown rice and add a green vegetable and you are set!    

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