Thursday, September 27, 2012

Tomato Salad is Cool (now w/ bonus salad recipe!)

Two quick and cool salad ideas --they make excellent sides for a spicy meal.  The tomato basil goes great with any blackened fish, and I love the creamy cucumber with spicy Indian fare.  No cooking required—simply combine the raw ingredients for an easy accompaniment to your favorite spicy dishes.

Tomato Basil Salad
2 fresh TOMATOES (diced)
½ cup BASIL (chopped)
¼  cup FETA CHEESE (crumbled)
SALT and PEPPER to taste

Cucumber Salad
½ LEMON (juice and zest)
1 tsp DILL
SALT and PEPPER to taste

Monday, September 24, 2012

Focaccia Bread Recipe

Mama Redbuck bakes up a delicious, Italian flat bread—Focaccia!  When you pull it hot out of the oven it’s hard—HARD—not to eat the whole thing, so good luck.  Thanks for watching, and for more cooking videos check out the Chef Buck Playlist at

Focaccia Bread Recipe


3 ½ cups all-purpose FLOUR
1 ½ cup warm WATER (approx. 130 degrees F)
1 ½ large sweet ONION (diced)
4-6 cloves GARLIC (finely chopped)
¼ cup JALAPENO (diced)
1 cup OLIVES –black, green, or both (chopped)
¼ cup PEPPERONCINI (chopped)
1 cup CHEESE (grated parmesan, asiago, and romano)
1-2 Tbsp fresh ROSEMARY (finely chopped)
approx. 6-7 Tbsp OLIVE OIL


Sift 3½ cups of ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR and combine in a mixing bowl with SALT and YEAST.  Add WARM WATER (approx. 130 degrees F) and mix contents of bowl for 1 minute in mixer.  Remove dough.  In a 9X13 baking pan greased with 1-2 Tbsp OLIVE OIL, spread dough flat.  Cover and allow dough to rise for 45-60 minutes.

While dough rises, chop and prep topping ingredients.  Take time to sauté the onions and garlic well.  Feel free to use more or less ingredients—this combo is terrific—but experiment according to your tastes (I bet a little sundried tomato would be awesome).

After bread has risen, uncover and drizzle the top of the dough with 2 Tbsp OLIVE OIL.  My mama sticks the end of her thumb into the dough all along the top to create an interesting (or not quite interesting) pattern; this is something you can do, too, if you’re retired with a lot of free time on your hands, but it’s not necessary.

Sprinkle and spread toppings evenly over the dough.

Place the bread in an oven pre-heated to 375 degrees F and bake approx. 35-40 minutes.

Remove bread from oven and let rest 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

Take care not to eat it all right away because you’ll want some for later.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Turkey Pot Pie Casserole Recipe

Down home country cookin'.  No bells or whistles, just comfort food like we like it.

2 to 3 lbs. of cooked TURKEY  (or chicken)
1 large RED ONION (chopped)
5 cloves GARLIC (minced)
1 med ZUCHINNI (chopped)
1 14 oz can ARTICHOKE HEARTS (chopped)
      ***experiment--use veggies you love***
   White sauce:
2 Tbsp all-purpose FLOUR
1/4 tsp SALT
1 cup MILK
2 cups CHICKEN BROTH                                      
   Casserole Topping:
1  tsp black PEPPER
1 ¼ stick BUTTER (melted)

Cook turkey (or chicken) your favorite way—allow to cool.  Remove skin and bones and chop into casserole friendly pieces.  If you have left-over turkey or chicken, then this is a great dish to utilize that extra bird when you’re fed up with eating sandwiches (definitely keep this dish in mind after Thanksgiving).

Chop veggies into casserole friendly pieces—definitely experiment with the types of veggies you use—whatever is on hand will usually work; isn’t cleaning out the fridge what a casserole does best?

Make the white sauce:  In a sauce pot, melt 2 Tbsp butter on low heat and slowly add 2 Tbsp flour, mixing until mixture is smooth.  Add ¼ tsp salt.  Slowly add 1 cup milk, stirring until all is smooth.  Turn burner heat up to medium high and add 2 cups broth.  Continue stirring until mixture is heated through, but do not bring to a boil. Cover and remove from heat.

Arrange turkey on the bottom of a casserole dish and cover with the white sauce.  Top with the chopped veggies.  Add additional seasonings if desired, but keep in mind that the broth may already be well salted.

In a bowl, combine 1 ½ cups buttermilk, 1½ cups self-rising flour, 1¼ stick melted butter, and black pepper.  Mix into a smooth batter.

Pour batter over the veggies; spread evenly over the casserole to form a smooth top layer.

Place Casserole in an oven pre-heated to 425 degrees F and cook approx. 35 minutes.  Cook an additional 5-10 minutes under the broiler to brown the top crust.

That’s it, dudes.

Allow casserole to rest 10-15 minutes before serving, and then follow your heart.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Spaghetti Squash --Mediterreanean Style

I love it when Camera Girl cooks up a spaghetti squash; its super tasty and I can eat too much without feeling too guilty.  Thanks for watching, and for more vids check out the Chef Buck Playlist at

1 large ONION (chopped)
4-6 cloves GARLIC (finely chopped)
½ RED BELL PEPPER (sliced)
1 14 oz can ARTICHOKE HEARTS in water (chopped)
1 cup OLIVES, and olive juice to taste (chopped)
¾ to 1 cup PARMESAN CHEESE (shredded or grated)
½ tsp THYME
1 tsp BASIL
SALT and PEPPER to taste

Preheat oven to 350. 

Cut spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise (a good, sharp knife will be nice).  Place each side, cut side down, in a shallow pan with about ¾ c water. Bake, uncovered for 45 minutes.  Set aside to cool squash halves--enough to handle without causing death to the handler--but not completely cool. 

You have time to chop up all your ingredients while the squash cooks.   For the artichoke, you may want to remove some of the outer, tougher leaves.

For each half, use a spoon to scrape out and discard the seeds and dark center strings.  Use a fork to scrape out the squash into ‘spaghetti-like’ strands.

Heat oil over medium high heat.  Saute onion and garlic 4-6 minutes.  Add bell pepper. Turn heat to low, stir and cover for 2-4 minutes.  Uncover, stir in spaghetti squash and remaining ingredients.  Cover and cook til all ingredients are warm, about 7-10 minutes.

Add Tbsp of olive juice and any other seasonings to taste. Serve warm.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Spanish Quinoa Recipe

Quinoa is a terrific ingredient and an excellent source of protein, so give it a try.

1 ½ cups QUINOA
 ½ cup RED ONION (minced, separated)
3-5 cloves GARLIC (finely chopped)
 ½ large RED BELL PEPPER (minced, separated)
1 14 oz can DICED TOMATO (reserve juice)
1 15 oz can KIDNEY BEANS (drained, rinsed)
1 tsp CUMIN powder
1 tsp CHILI powder
2 cups WATER, including drained tomato liquid

½ cup CILANTRO (fresh, chopped)
1 small CUCUMBER (diced, peeled if waxed)
1 AVOCADO (seeded, peeled, diced)
1/3 cup LIME JUICE (freshly squeezed)
SALT and PEPPER to taste

Drain the tomato liquid into a measuring cup. Add enough water to equal 2 cups.

Heat oil on medium high. Saute garlic, 2/3 of the onion and 1/3 of the red pepper. [Rest of the onion and red pepper will be added raw at the end.]

Stir in tomatoes with green chilies, kidney beans, cumin and chili powder and water/tomato juice mixture.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce to medium low and cook 15 minutes – most liquid is gone and quinoa is tender.
Turn off the flame and let sit for about 10 minutes, until all water is absorbed and quinoa is warm, not hot.

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