Category: Rick’s Recipes

Stuffing

Stuffing

INGREDIENTS
1 lb hot sausage
1 lb regular or sage sausage
2 cans (4-oz each) water chestnuts, drained and chopped
2 onions, minced (divided)
2-3 cups celery, thinly sliced (with leaves)
1 lb mushrooms, sliced
5 cups chicken stock
1½ cubes butter
1 tbsp Italian Seasoning
1 tbsp parsley flakes
2 tsp marjoram flakes
1 tsp ground sage (add an additional ½ tsp sage if not using sage sausage)
¾ tsp ground black pepper
¼ tsp oregano leaves
16 cups bread, cubed and dried
1 cup dried sweetened cranberries
pine nuts, roasted (or pistachios)
pepitas (optional)


DIRECTIONS
Place both sausages in large sauté pan and brown; add water chestnuts.  Place browned sausage mixture in a large mixing bowl and set aside, reserving drippings in sauté pan.

Add 1½ onions and celery to sauté pan with a small pat of butter and cook until onions are translucent. Place celery mixture in a separate bowl and set aside. Add remaining onion, mushrooms, and a pat of butter to sauté pan.  Sauté until mushrooms have release a significant amount of liquid.  Pour liquid into a separate bowl and reserve.  Continue to sauté mushrooms to desired doneness; add to celery mixture.

In a large stock pot, combine liquid from mushrooms plus enough chicken stock to total 5 cups of liquid; add butter.  Stir in Italian Seasoning (or substitute Herbes de Provence), parsley flakes,  marjoram, sage, black pepper, and oregano.  Bring to a boil.  Stir in onion and celery mixture; return to boil.  Remove from heat; immediately add bread crumbs and carefully stir to moisten.  Cover with lid and allow the stuffing to sit for five to ten minutes.

After liquid is absorbed1, stir in all remaining ingredients, reserving some of the dried cranberries, pine nuts, and pepitas (optional).  Place stuffing in two 9×13 pans and heat under broiler until the top is slightly browned.  Top with reserved dried cranberry mixture.

Notes:
1 If too moist, prior to stirring in final ingredients, gently spread stuffing on a baking sheet keeping bread as intact as possible. Place in a 350º oven and allow to dry to desired moisture level, stirring occasionally.

(Updated 12/27/2023)

Carnitas

Carnitas

INGREDIENTS
8 lbs pork shoulder, cut into large chucks
8 lbs lard
4 tbsp salt dissolved in 1½ cups hot water
1 can evaporated milk
1 bottle Coca-Cola
3 oranges (minimum ½ cup juice)
2-3 bay leaves
15-20 cloves garlic
½ onion


DIRECTIONS
Heat lard to 350° on medium heat; add pork.  Stir every 15 minutes until evenly brown and crispy (30-60 minutes).  Reduce heat to approx. 225°; add remaining ingredients and simmer until browned, crispy and fork tender.

For tacos, serve in warmed corn tortillas, topped with diced onion, chopped cilantro, crumbled queso fresco, and homemade salsa (salsa verde & chile de árbol salsa).

Chile de Árbol Salsa

Chile de Árbol Salsa

Salsa de ÁrbolINGREDIENTS
6-8 árbol chilies
7-8 tomatillos
⅓ medium onion
2-3 roma tomato
2 serrano chilies or jalapeños
cilantro to taste (1 bunch)
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp chicken & tomato boullion


DIRECTIONS
Roast árbol chilies, being careful not to burn; place in blender.  Roast tomatillos, onion, serrano chilies.  Once the tomatillos begin to brown, add roma tomatoes and heat until contents are browned; add to blender.  Add remaining ingredients to blender; blend to desired consistency.

Espiau’s Vinaigrette

Espiau’s Vinaigrette

In the 1970s and 1980s, our family would frequently make the drive to Pomona to eat at Espiau’s Mexican Restaurant.  At that time it was located on the west end of Holt.  The restaurant dates back to the early 20th century and was founded by an early Pomona Valley pioneer.  The business moved to the Claremont in the 1990s and can still be found in the Claremont Village.  Our family’s favorite dish there is the Tostada Salad.  Their tostada is unique.  Instead of salsa, their’s is topped with a vinaigrette.  This recipe is my attempt to replicate their dressing.


INGREDIENTS
1¼ cups red wine vinegar
¾ cup vegetable oil (or substitute extra virgin olive oil)
⅓ cup sugar
2 tbsp Lowry’s seasoned salt
1 tbsp onion powder
¼ tsp black pepper, finely ground
⅛ tsp oregano


DIRECTIONS
Combine all ingredients in a jar; shake to combine.

Dr Pepper Barbecue Sauce

Dr Pepper Barbecue Sauce

imageINGREDIENTS
1 bottle (20-oz) Dr Pepper
2 cups ketchup
1 cup brown sugar
¼ cup honey
¼ cup vinegar
2 tsp liquid aminos
1 tsp fish sauce
1 tsp chipotle chili powder
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ginger powder
¼ tsp galangal powder (or substitute an additional ¼ tsp ginger)


DIRECTIONS
Combine all ingredients and boil until thickened.

Note: For Dr Pepper, root beer or cola may be substituted.  In place of liquid aminos and fish sauce, 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce may be substituted.

Meat Sauce

Meat Sauce

INGREDIENTS
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup (8-oz) onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb ground chuck beef
1 can (28-oz) crushed tomatoes
1 can (15-oz) tomato sauce
1 can (6-oz) tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
¼ – ½ cup dry white, or dry red wine (optional)
2 tsp fish sauce (optional)
2 tsp dried basil
2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
½ tsp dried ground fennel
¼ tsp dried thyme leaves
2 whole cloves, crushed
2 bay leaves
½ tsp fresh ground pepper to taste
1 tsp salt


DIRECTIONS
In a Dutch oven over medium heat, heat olive oil until shimmering; add onion and garlic and sauté until onion is translucent and tender.  Add meat and cook until no longer pink.

Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, chicken broth, wine (optional), and fish sauce (optional); add remaining herbs, spices & seasonings. Simmer covered on low heat for 30 minutes and uncovered for 15 minutes.

Remove bay leaves prior to serving.  Sauce is best when made a day more in advance and reheated. 

To serve, boil desired pasta as directed; drain retaining a some of the pasta water in a separate bowl.  Place enough warmed meat sauce to coat pasta in a serving bowl and stir in a small amount of pasta water; add pasta and stir to coat.  Serve topped with extra meat sauce and freshly grated Romano or Parmesan cheese (or both).

Sweet & Sour Chicken

Sweet & Sour Chicken

SAUCE
1 cup sugar
2 cups (or 1 can, 14 oz) chicken broth
¾ cup seasoned rice vinegar
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp salt
2 large yellow onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped (2 tsp)
1 can (20 oz) pineapple chunks, ½ drained
2 tomatoes, sliced into wedges
2 bell peppers, sliced into 1” pieces
¼ cup plus 2 tbsp cornstarch
¼ cup cold water

MEAT
1 egg, slightly beaten
2 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp soy sauce
¼ tsp white pepper
1½ pounds chicken (and/or Pork), cut into 1” cubes
vegetable oil
¾ cup flour
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
¾ cup water

DIRECTIONS
In 3-quart saucepan, heat sugar, broth, vinegar, 1 tbsp vegetable oil, 1 tsp salt, onion and garlic to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer.

Mix egg, 2 tbsp cornstarch, 2 tbsp vegetable oil, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp soy sauce and the white pepper in medium bowl; stir in chicken. Cover and refrigerate 20 minutes.

Mix ¼ cup plus 2 tbsp cornstarch and ¼ cup water; stir into sauce. Cook and stir until thickened (about 30 seconds). Stir in tomatoes, bell pepper and pineapple. Heat to boiling.

Heat vegetable oil in wok to 350º. Mix flour, 2 tbsp cornstarch, 1 tsp salt and the baking soda in medium bowl. Stir in ¾ cup water. Stir in chicken mixture; coat well. Fry about 20 pieces at a time for 4 minutes or until light brown, turning frequently; drain on paper towels. Increase oil temperature to 375º. Fry chicken all at once for 1 minute or until golden brown; drain on paper towels.

Serve with sauce poured over chicken.

Quick Refried Beans

Quick Refried Beans

INGREDIENTS
2 cups pinto beans
1 onion, diced (or 1 tbsp onion powder)
1 sachet ham bouillon
1 sachet sazón
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp salt
4½ cups water
2 tbsp butter


DIRECTIONS
Rinse beans. Combine all ingredients except butter in Instant Pot. Cook at high pressure for 60 minutes. Release pressure to open; stir in butter.  Blend with hand mixer or emersion blender.

(Revised 8/20/2022)

 

Honey Mustard Sauce

Honey Mustard Sauce

INGREDIENTS
1 cup mayonnaise
½ cup barbecue sauce
¼ cup prepared mustard
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp honey
¼ cup sugar
½ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp chipotle chili powder
⅛ tsp MSG (optional)


DIRECTIONS
Combine all ingredients.

Apple Barbecue Sauce

Apple Barbecue Sauce

INGREDIENTS
36 oz Sidral Mundet (Apple Soda)
2 cups ketchup
1 cup brown sugar
¼ cup honey
¼ cup white wine vinegar
2 tbsp burbon
2 tsp molasses
2 tsp hickory liquid smoke
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ancho chili powder
½ tsp mustard powder
¼ tsp ginger powder
¼ tsp galanga powder
¼ tsp fish sauce


DIRECTIONS
Combine ingredients in saucepan; boil until desired thickness.

Brown Sugar Blondies

Brown Sugar Blondies

INGREDIENTS
2 cups brown sugar
1 ⅔ cups flour
½ cup butter, melted
3 eggs
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp salt


DIRECTIONS
Combine all ingredients and spread evenly into a greased 9×13 baking dish.  Bake at 350º until the top is dry and edges begin to pull away from the sides (25 minutes).  Remove from oven and cool completely before slicing.

Ginger Cranberry Bars
½ tsp ginger powder
¼ cup crystallized ginger, chopped
¾ cup dried cranberries, chopped
8oz white chocolate chips

Pork Chile Verde

Pork Chile Verde

INGREDIENTS
1 picnic pork shoulder
1 recipe salsa verde
cumin
salt
pepper


DIRECTIONS
Cut pork into 2-inch chunks.  Spread out and sprinkle liberally with cumin, salt, and pepper; massage into meat.  In large porcelain or stainless steel Dutch oven, brown pork in small batches so as not to overcrowd pan.  Return all pork to pan and cover with salsa verde.  Simmer until tender.

Serve with tortillas, shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, shredded cheese, sliced avocado, pickled jalapeños, refried beans, and cilantro lime rice.

Rick’s Salsa Verde – the Real Deal

Rick’s Salsa Verde – the Real Deal

Taquitos are high on the list of Huggins Family most loved foods. And, our favorites come from the little stand on Olvera Street in downtown Los Angeles, Cielito Lindo, where taquitos were invented in the mid 1930s. Every trip home to Southern California includes a trek downtown for Combination #1: 3 Taquitos, Beans and Cheese. The taquitos are smothered in “guacamole”. Cielito Lindo’s version of guacamole is a delicious green salsa that you can’t help but dream about. This recipe is the closest I’ve come to replicating its flavor.


INGREDIENTS
1 can (28 oz) tomatillos
1 bottle (40 oz) roasted green chiles, mild
1 tbsp garlic, minced
1-2 avocados (optional)
½ onion, chopped
1 bunch cilantro
2 tsp salt


DIRECTIONS
Combine all ingredients and blend with emersion blender.  Serve with tacos, taquitos, or chips; or to make chile verde.


CIELITO LINDO’S HOME VERSION
After working for some time to recreate Cielito Lindo’s, I learned from Pam that Cielito Lindo published a home version of their guacamole.  The recipe is below, with some minor alterations.


INGREDIENTS
8 fresh chiles gueritos (yellow chiles), seeded and deveined
5 cloves garlic, chopped
15 medium tomatillos, peeled and halved
2 1/2 cups cilantro, chopped
6 cups water
2 medium avocados
4 tsp salt


DIRECTIONS
In a large pan, combine chiles, garlic, tomatillos, cilantro, and water; bring to boil.  Lower heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes. Remove mixture from water and place in blender; reserve water.  Add avocado and salt to blender.  Blend, adding water in small installments and blend until smooth.  Place in refrigerator overnight to allow flavors to meld.  Adjust salt, if necessary.

Fresh Cranberry Relish

Fresh Cranberry Relish

INGREDIENTS
1 pkg (12 oz.) fresh cranberries
1 orange, peeled
1 cup sugar


DIRECTIONS
Wash cranberries and place in food processor. Pulse until cranberries are in small, approximately equal pieces. Place in cranberries in a mixing bowl; cover with sugar. Place orange in food processor and process until liquefied. Pour orange juice and pulp into cranberries and mix well. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

Chicken Gyro

Chicken Gyro

On vacation in Corfu, Greece, we visited a small waterside restaurant where we ate the most amazing gyro.   Moist and tender, this true Greek gyro was nothing like the meatloaf-like gyro we find in the US.  This chicken version is a delicious reminder of our experiences on this family vacation.


INGREDIENTS
4 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Marinade
2 tbsp garlic, minced
⅓ cup lemon juice
⅓ cup plain greek yogurt
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp dried oregano
2 tsp salt
pepper

Sauce
2 English cucumbers, diced with water squeezed out
2½ cups plain greek yogurt
2 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
pepper

Salad
1 English cucumber, diced
4-5 tomatoes, seeded and diced
½ large red onion
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper

Flat bread or pita (Omit for GF)


DIRECTIONS
Combine marinade ingredients in a gallon Ziploc bag; add chicken and marinate in the refrigerator (3 to 24 hours[overnight is best]).  In a medium mixing bowl, stir together sauce ingredients a minimum of 30 minutes prior to serving.  Next, combine all salad ingredients in a separate bowl.   Refrigerate sauce and salad until ready to serve.

Grill marinated chicken.

To serve, place some of the salad mixture in the center of flat bread; top with chicken and sauce.

Peanut Sauce

Peanut Sauce

I learned to love peanut sauce (pindasaus) while living in The Netherlands.  An Indonesian meal just isn’t right without it!  This delicious sauce is a favorite of every member of our family.  We use it most often to smother skewers of chicken (Satay Ajam) or pork (Satay Babi), over vegetables (Gado Gado), or with mayonnaise and diced onions to top frites (Patatje Oorlog).  There are two kinds of people in the world; those who love peanut sauce, and those who haven’t eaten it often enough to crave it… yet!   


INGREDIENTS
1⁄2 cup peanut butter
1⁄2 tsp garlic
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp ketjap manis
1 can (14 oz) coconut milk
3 tbsp brown sugar
1⁄8 tsp hot curry powder
1⁄4 tsp sambal oelek (or to taste)


DIRECTIONS
In saucepan, melt peanut butter; add garlic. Heat until texture is creamy. Add lemon juice and ketjap manis. Sauce will become quite thick. Stir in coconut milk, brown sugar, curry powder and sambal.

For a slight variation, I will often add a couple of teaspoons of fresh ginger, or even a little lemon grass.

Belgian Frites

Belgian Frites


Patat MetOk, my friends, don’t get me started!  Just believe me when I say, Fries are NOT French!  Whether it be because of the style of the cut (frenched) or the native language of many of their early purveyors, french and fries have been erroneously linked as the name of a true Belgian creation, Frites!  Calling these spears of deliciousness French is, well, just wrong. 

Real frites are double fried, delivering a soft and fluffy interior and crisp exterior.   They are traditionally salted and served with mayonnaise.  But, if you are feeling a bit more  adventurous, try some of the typical toppings for Frites from the Netherlands and Belgium found under Serving Suggestions at the end of the recipe.  My personal favorite…  Patat Speciaal!


INGREDIENTS
Large potatoes
Water
Oil
Salt
Pepper (optional)


DIRECTIONS
Wash and slice potatoes (either peeled or unpeeled) into thick strips; place in a large bowl of fresh cold water and soak for 20 minutes or more.  Heat oil to 275° to 300°.  Line a large paper bag with paper towels.  Fry sliced potato fries in batches for +/-5 minutes per batch being careful to keep oil temperature in range.  Place fried potatoes in prepared paper bag and allow to cool.  Increase oil temperature to 375° to 400°; fry in batches a second time for +/-5 minutes per batch.  Place fries on a baking dish lined with paper towels and sprinkle with salt (and pepper, if desired) immediately.  Devour.

Real Belgian frites (french fries) are always pre-soaked in water and then fried twice.  This results in a crisp outside and fluffy interior.


SERVING SUGGESTIONS
Patat Met – Fries with mayonnaise
Patat Speciaal – Fries with mayonnaise, curry ketchup, and topped with onions
Patatje Oorlog – Fries with mayonnaise, peanut sauce, sambal oelek, and topped with onions
Patatje Joppie – Fries with mayonnaise mixed with  yellow curry spices, and topped with onions
Frieten met Stoofvlees – Fries with Belgian stew