Sunday, January 10, 2010

SMS is Still Chilling for Pics plus Homemade Marinera Sauce and Lobster Tails

Sweet Melissa Sunday is going to appear here later today . . . Promise. I made a Big Banana Cream Pie with Caramelized Bananas and Banana Liqueur and the pie is still chilling. I have to add the Banana-ed whipped cream topping and take pictures. Chilling is a few more hours . . . feels like this scenario happens way too often in my kitchen (sigh).

See? I wanted to show proof that the SMS chocolate pie crust is indeed mixed together and the pie is on its way.

Butter and shortening are kept in constant supply in the freezer because pie crusts seem to fight me every time, so now precautions are taken. I really do not understand this. As a teenager, I used to make lemon meringue pie and apple pies, when Grandma brought apples from their apple tree, and in my mind the pies always turned out fine. Now, the issue is with pie crusts shrinking or caving completely in the oven while baking (ones with no filling). The kitchen is not to hot, I poke wholes with a fork all over the pie crust and the majority of the time, I put the crust in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before baking. Still, there is slumping.

I am actually starting to dread baking pies.Valrhona cocoa powder was used and the butter has been cut into pea sized pieces.

The well was made and ice cold water set inside. Now you are just going to have to wait for the finished product to see how the pie turned out. =)

In the meantime, I am sharing my homemade marinara sauce; used as pasta sauce, in place of tomato sauce and as a marinara for chicken cacciatore. The recipe makes about 8 cups and the sauce can be broken down into serving sizes and frozen for later use or canned. I do both; preferring canning over freezing. I use my sauce a lot when dinner ideas are not jumping out at me. So quick to throw on pasta and add whatever else to the dish along with freshly grated Parmigiana cheese. Easy, fast and a relief!

Albertsons, here in Port Orchard, had wild caught Honduras lobster tails on sale this weekend so I bought 2. The day started out with great intentions. The marinara sauce is simmering away, cucumbers sticks are soaking in white wine vinegar, salt, and a dash of sugar for baking later and lobster tails are in the refrigerator, waiting to be announced. My marinara sauce gets done and just like that, so was my will to cook for the day. No desire WHAT SO EVER! On top of that, rebellion set in. The more the lobster tails were yelling to be cooked, the more I focused on watching Criminal minds, recorded earlier on the DVR. Clicking past commercials and getting right back into the show. I actually watched 2 1/2 Criminal Mind shows before the guilt overpowered my rebellion to cook. For those of you who do not know, the Criminal Minds show is an hour long (with commercials).
After starting the 3rd show, I dragged myself, grumbling the whole time about stupid lobster tails, wasting money, can't believe my hubby isn't a mind-reader and just tell me how happy he would be to take us out for dinner (even though it is around 9 pm) and now I have to make this stupid dinner. . . I may have slammed the refrigerator door just a little for emphasis.
Then I start cooking and really paid attention to what I was doing. The next thing I knew, I actually invited Larry into the kitchen to help without him having to worry about his personal safety and health.

The lobster tails started coming together, butter is being melted, water (salt and olive oil gets added to the water) is put on the stove for spaghetti noodles and Larry pours me a glass of wine to keep things safe since I am now smiling again. Why do we get into these funks or am I the only one?
Dinner seemed to get done in know time and everything was delicious!
I am now sharing my Marinara recipe, which was past on from Grandma! Enjoy =D
3 T. Olive Oil
4 cloves Garlic, thinly sliced
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 T. fresh oregano, chopped
1 1/2 to 2 T. basil, dried or freshly chopped (whatever you can get ahold of)
2 whole Bay leaves, dried or fresh
7 cans (16 oz. each) Tomato sauce - Hunts brand preferred
1 can Tomato paste - same brand if possible
2 cans ( 12 oz to 14 oz each) diced tomatoes - with or without extra seasonings included
2 celery sticks cleaned
1 carrot, just peeled and cleaned
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiana cheese
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Use a Large Pot!
Heat olive oil on medium-low heat. Put garlic & onion in oil and heat until it is tender.

Put parsley, oregano, basil, and bay leaves in and continue to heat for about 3 minutes.
Open all cans of tomato products; add in sauce pot. Raise heat to medium high. Make sure to occasionally stir sauce. Cook and stir sauce until hot. Once sauce is hot, lower heat to simmer.
Add celery stalks and whole carrot in sauce, continue to simmer for 30 minutes.
Add 1 cup of grated cheese to sauce, continue to simmer 15 minutes.
Remove carrot, celery, cover sauce, continue to simmer. Make sure to occasionally stir sauce.
Taste, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, take out bay leaves and simmer until the flavor is right for you. Then make some pasta, chicken, whatever you would like to use the marinara sauce for and break the rest down into serving portions for later use and freeze.So GOOD and thank you Grandma =).
The lobster tails were cut down the center of the tummy part of the shell, through the meat, to the back of the shell but not all the way through the back shell.
Water was added to a baking pan (about 2 Tablespoons) and set under the broiler to get hot before adding the lobster tails. I use the water to help add steam and keep the lobster meat from drying out.
The distance from the broiler element is determined by the size of the lobster tail. These tails were about 12 oz. each and take longer to cook so my distance was around 9" from the broiler element and took me about 20 minutes to cook before the meat was done all the way through.
Easy and delicious!


lakegirl said...

Can't wait to see the SMS recipe.

Lobster what a wonderful January dinner!

Oh yes I have those kitchen funks, had one tonight. Warm in the kitchen, hubby cut the chicken before it had rested long enough, only trying to be helpful got him in trouble. Bread didn't raise like I wanted. Felt much better after he said great dinner :)

Sonia (Nasi Lemak Lover) said...

Wo, what a wonderful dinner, look delicious !

spike. said...

love banana cream- hope it turned out well!

Eliana said...

Can't wait to see your pie. As for the sauce - it looks amazing! I just want to dip some crusty bread into the pot.

Flourchild said...

I want lobster and I want it now!
Can't wait to see the pie..letme know what you think of the crust...