No-nonsense entrées with the heartiness to satisfy big family appetites fill today's request board.
Fill tummies without
using too much time
These are dishes that will satisfy the tummy more than please the eye. Don't expect them to look particularly pretty on the plate, but when you can get dinner on the table in a hurry, who cares?
They also offer variety, so you could serve all three next week.
REMI VEGAS wrote for a recipe for Spanish Rice, similar to what she was served in her school cafeteria back in the 1950s. This ground-beef/rice/tomato concoction, a schoolhouse staple from those years, is exactly the type of cafeteria comfort food that exerts a hold on many people, years after they've left the classroom.
SPANISH RICE SUPPER"365 Easy One-Dish Meals," by Natalie Haughton (Harper and Row, 1990)
1 pound lean ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup uncooked rice
1 28-ounce can peeled tomatoes, cut up
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1 cup water
2 teaspoons ground cumin
3/4 cup canned diced green chilies
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Cook beef, onion and bell pepper over medium heat, stirring often, until beef is browned, 8 to 10 minutes.
Drain excess fat. Stir in rice, tomatoes with their liquid, tomato paste, water, cumin and chilies. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 30 to 35 minutes, until rice is tender. Season with salt and pepper. Serves 4 to 5.
Approximate nutritional analysis, per 2-cup serving: 470 calories, 20 g total fat, 8 g saturated fat, 70 mg cholesterol, 800 mg sodium, 49 g carbohydrate, 23 g protein.*
RANDALL AND SADIE Takehara lost their copy of Muriel Miura's "Maxi Meals for Mini Money" many years ago and have been trying to replace Miura's recipe for Stuffed Cabbage ever since.
Miura -- now Kaminaka -- was a home economist for The Gas Co. and wrote a series of cookbooks featuring easy local-style dishes. They are all out-of-print, but she continues to work in the recipe realm, devoted now to producing a cookbook for the Japanese Women's Society.
"Maxi Meals," published in 1975, was devoted to "scratch" cooking, but with an awareness of tight budgets.
STUFFED CABBAGE1 pound ground beef
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup minced onion
2 8-ounce cans tomato sauce
12 large cabbage leaves, blanched
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice
Combine beef, salt, pepper, bread crumbs, onion and 1 can of tomato sauce. Place equal portions of meat mixture into the center of each cabbage leaf. Fold ends over, roll up and fasten with toothpicks.
Combine remaining ingredients and pour over cabbage rolls. Cover and cook over low heat 30 minutes, basting occasionally. Uncover and cook 15 to 20 minutes more. Serves 4 to 6.
Approximate nutritional analysis, per cabbage roll: 140 calories, 8 g total fat, 3.5 g saturated fat, 30 mg cholesterol, 440 mg sodium, 10 g carbohydrate, 8 g protein.*
CANDACE YAP has been searching for a recipe for a poi-friendly dish made with salted brisket.
"I used to live in Honolulu but since I live in Washington now I'm certain that I will not find a recipe or restaurant which has Salt Meat with Watercress."
After her request was printed here, two people came through -- Leighton Akita and Lance Samura (who credits his contribution to "Popo" Gwen Fu). What follows is an adaptation of their suggestions.
SALT MEAT AND WATERCRESS3 pounds salted brisket
6 quarts water
Thumb-sized piece of ginger, crushed
1 bunch watercress, trimmed
Rinse salt from meat. Cut into bite-sized pieces.
Place meat in water and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer 30 minutes.
Drain and rinse. Repeat process, then taste meat. If it is still too salty, repeat one more time.
Add more water to the pot, then add brisket and ginger. Bring to a boil again; lower heat and simmer 1 hour.
Rinse watercress in warm, salted water. Cut into 2-inch pieces. Add to meat at the end of the hour; stems first.
>> To make your own salted meat: Rub beef brisket with salt. Layer salt and meat, starting with salt, in a crock. (For 5 pounds brisket, use about 3-3/4 cups Hawaiian salt.) Cover and refrigerate about 5 days to cure. Salt crystals will liquefy as they absorb liquid from the meat. If desired, discard this liquid and replenish the salt after about 3 days.
The nutritional content of this recipe cannot be calculated by computer analysis, but USDA average statistics for 4 ounces of brisket are: 290 calories, 22 g total fat, 7 g saturated fat, 110 mg cholesterol, greater than 1,200 mg sodium, 0.5 mg carbohydrate, 21 grams protein.*
Food Stuffs: Morsels
Send queries along with name and phone number to:
"By Request," Honolulu Star-Bulletin,
500 Ala Moana, No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813.
Or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
Asterisk (*) after nutritional analyses in the
Body & Soul section indicates calculations by
Joannie Dobbs of Exploring New Concepts,
a nutritional consulting firm.