Easy Ketchup from Tomato Paste

You Will Need:

  • 1 12oz Can Tomato Paste (The only safe company I know of right now is Contadina.)
  • 1/2 Cup Water
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Dry Mustard
  • 1/2 Cup Rice Vinegar (White Distilled Vinegar is often from corn, so watch out.)
  • Pinch of Cumin

Directions

  1. Combine all ingredient and blend together well. A whisk, electric mixer, or chopper/grinder will all work well.
  2. Adjust spices to taste.
  3. Cover and Refrigerate.

Note: This ketchup should be used up within the month to prevent spoiling.

Recipe By Kristine Brown

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Pasta Salad

You Will Need

Pasta:

  • 16oz Bag of Brown Rice Pasta (Tinkyada Brown Rice Penne or Spirals have worked the best for me.)
  • 4 Carrots (Chopped)
  • 2 Tomatoes (Diced)
  • 2 Green Peppers (Chopped)
  • 1 Medium Sized Onion (Chopped)
  • 1/2 lb. Pepperoni (Cubed or Small Sliced Pieces)
  • 1/2 lb. Salami (Cubed or Small Sliced Pieces)
  • Optional: 1/2 lb.Crumbled Feta Cheese (Note: Adding this ingredient will make the dish NOT Lactose-Free. Remember to take some Lactaid if you go this route.)

Sauce:

  • 3/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Rice Vinegar
  • 3 Teaspoons Oregano
  • Salt to Taste
  • Pepper to Taste

Directions

  1. Cook Pasta. Note: Usually, Gluten-Free pasta only takes about half the time to cook as the directions on the bag will say; however, keeping a close watch on it and tasting pieces periodically should ensure that it doesn’t get overcooked. (When the pasta is still firm, but not crunchy, it is done. If left to cook too long it will fall apart.) After you strain the pasta, rinse it off in the  colander to remove excess gooey starch.
  2. Pour a little Olive Oil to coat the cooked pasta to prevent sticking, and place in a bowl in the fridge while cutting vegetables.
  3. Make Sauce.
  4. Add all ingredients to pasta and pour Sauce over top.
  5. Be careful when mixing ingredients, since you don’t want to put too much stress on the pasta and cause it to fall apart.
  6. Chill in refrigerator.

Recipe By Kristine Brown

Meatloaf

Preheat

350° F

You Will Need

Meatloaf:

  • 3/4 Cup Oatmeal
  • 1.5 Cups Milk
  • 1.5 lbs. Ground Beef
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/2 Medium-Sized White Onion (Chopped)
  • 2 Celery Sticks (Diced Fine)
  • 1/3 Cup Ketchup (Learn how to make it here.)
  • 1/4 Cup Mustard (I recommend 1/4 Cup Colman’s Mustard Flour combined with 1/4 Cup Water, unless you’ve already got a corn and gluten-free brand.)
  • 2 Tablespoons Honey (100% Pure)
  • 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup (100% Pure)
  • 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Pepper
  • 2 Teaspoon Sage

Glaze:

  • 1/2 Cup Ketchup
  • 1/3 Cup Mustard (1/3 Cup Mustard Flour mixed with a respective 1/3 Cup Water)
  • 1/3 Cup Brown Sugar

Directions

  1. Preheat oven.
  2. Combine Colman’s Mustard Flour and Cold Water into bowl and mix well; let sit for at least 10 minutes while preparing other ingredients. Keep Mustard for Meatloaf and Mustard for Glaze amounts seperate, as you will need 1/4 Cup for the former and 1/3 Cup for the latter.
  3. Combine Oatmeal and Milk in small bowl; microwave for 1 minute 15 seconds. Stir when done.
  4. Combine all other Meatloaf ingredients with Oatmeal/Milk mixture in large bowl and mix well (you may want to use your hands to make sure everything gets mushed up well).
  5. Place raw Meatloaf into greased 9×5 Meatloaf/Bread Pan.
  6. Mix all Glaze ingredients in small bowl; microwave 30 seconds; stir.
  7. Pour Glaze over Meatloaf in pan (you might want to push the meatloaf away from the pan sides a little bit so that the glaze can cover the sides as well).
  8. Cook Meatloaf in conventional oven at 350° for 1 hour 15 minutes.
  9. Pour excess liquid from pan when finished.
  10. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe By Kristine Brown

Garam Masala Curry

You Will Need

Curry:

  • 4 Chicken Breasts/2lbs. StirFry Steak (Cubed, or cut into strips.)
  • 2/3 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 Medium-Sized Onion (Chopped or diced.)
  • 2 Tablespoons Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon Red Pepper
  • 2 Tablespoon Garam Masala Curry Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Saffron
  • 1 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 Teaspoon Celery Seed
  • 1 Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1.5 Tablespoons Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Minced Garlic (Preferably not dehydrated, but it will work if that’s all you have.)
  • 1 Teaspoon Orange Peel
  • 2 Teaspoons Paprika
  • 1 Teaspoon Turmeric
  • 1 Tablespoon Mustard Powder

Rice:

  • 1.5 Cups Rice
  • 3 Cups Water
  • 2 Tablespoons Canola/Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Salt

Directions

  1. Pour Oil into large tupperware container (or something of the like that has a lid) and add all spices.
  2. Add meat to curry marinade and shake well in container.
  3. Let sit for at least 2 hours. (You might just want to make it the night before or earlier in the day, because the longer you let it sit the more flavorful it will be.)
  4. Pour Curry out of container into large skillet or wok.
  5. Fry on medium heat until meat is cooked thoroughly.
  6. Pour entire concoction (including oil; it will be your “sauce” of sorts) over rice and mix well.

Recipe By Kristine Brown

Chili’s Grill & Bar: Fairfax, VA

Review

One of the lesser visited restaurants along Route 29 in Fairfax, and rightfully so, Chili’s is anything but a hidden treasure. I won’t pretend I didn’t devour every last bite of their Chicken Ranch sandwich, and I wouldn’t dare naysay such a gloriously blended frozen Mango Margherita; however, the fact of the matter remains, Chili’s general aesthetic–both decoratively and culinarily–leaves a lot to be desired. In fact, the whole dining experience at Chili’s leaves one with an overwhelming feeling of lack, for I have never seen service with such little regard for customer’s desires. You know, like, “I desire to order food now,”   “I desire to have napkins now,” and even, “I desire to pay you for your (lack of) services now.” The bartender, playing waiter, playing busboy, playing bartender was about the only useful character in the joint. Now, I know I said T.G.I. Friday’s could have used some work in the customer service department, but Chili’s seems to be giving them a run for their money. On the bright side, if I’m ever looking for nothing more than a cold buzz, Chili’s is where I will be headed.

Rating

Food: 2/5
Service: 1/5

Contact Information

Chili’s Grill and Bar
11219 Lee Highway
Fairfax, VA 22030
(703) 591-7888

T.G.I. Friday’s: Tysons Corner, VA

Review

To say that I like the food at T.G.I. Friday’s in Tysons Corner Center would be a gross understatement; in fact, if it weren’t for Turkey Burgers and Pot Stickers (not to mention the breadsticks that taste exaclty like fried donuts), I’m certain I would have already run out on my check a few times at this point. While I have only ever sat in the smoking section of booths around the bar, I can’t imagine that the service somehow miraculously improves from, “sucks hardcore,” just by moving 30 feet. The wait staff could really care less about your needs, despite what one believes their job description to be, and you will most assuredly watch your food sit in the kitchen window for a good 10 minutes before it’s ever placed in front of you. Oh, and don’t fool yourself into thinking that the check is the easiest part of the meal to work through; they obviously care nothing about money at that establishment. Now, when it’s all said and done, if you can put up with this kind of abuse (as I do ritualistically every week), then I encourage, nay beseech, you to visit Friday’s for one of their many delicious Half-Priced Appetizers during happy hour (3-7pm and 10pm-close; at the bar) or perhaps something covered in their infamously delectable barbeque sauce.

Ratings

Food: 3/5
Service: 2/5

Contact Information

T.G.I Friday’s
1961 Chain Bridge Road
Mclean, VA 22102
(703) 448-5470