Tag Archives: Onion

Hardcore Hobbit: Hard Tack Ration or Green Onion Cakes

Now, the description in game for these does not sound like a very fun dish at all. They keep you alive and complaining about the bad food for days. Well this will not do for hobbitses such as ourselves. The ingredients for this dish are flour, salt and water, to make it epic we add chives. Well, let’s upgrade those chives to green onions! So here I’ve made an easily transportable and tasty green onion pancake style hard tack ration. I love how the green onion gives them a subtle sweetness too. Suitable for keeping soldiers alive and happy with their food for days.

  • 1 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbl canola oil
  • 3/4 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onion
  • butter flavoured cooking spray
  1. Combine the salt and flours in a bowl. Add the boiling water and oil, stir until a dough forms. If it is a bit too sticky add more Whole Wheat flour. Knead the dough for five minutes.
  2. Roll the dough into a long snake and cut into twelve pieces.
  3. Roll the pieces into flat rounds, spray the top and sprinkle with a bit of green onion.
  4. Roll it up like a jelly roll.
  5. Press the roll down a bit on the seam and then coil it into a snail shape. Allow them to rest for 30 minutes.
  6. Flatten each of your “snails”, roll them into a pancake shape. You can allow these to sit until ready for cooking if you are premaking or cook right now.
  7. Preheat pan to medium and spray. Heat the pancake on one side until golden, flip and press down a bit. When golden on both sides they are ready to serve! Great hot or cold.

Makes 12 hard tack rations. Each ration contains 72 calories, 1.4 grams of fat, 13.7 grams of carb, 1.3 grams of fibre, and 2.2 grams of protein. These are great served with a bit of that asian hot sauce with the rooster on it. Num!

Hardcore Hobbit: Salted Beef Delights

“Choice cuts of beef, dried and salted.” Beef jerky time!! I love making beef jerky. I have a dehydrator that is probably older than I am but boy to I love that thing. I love making up a batch of jerky this time of year in preparation for any camping trips that may come up. It’s a camping staple! Beef jerky from the store is always so bland and expensive. Making your own is the best way to go, especially when the beef sales start. I got my flank steak 20% off! In LOTRO salted beef delights are made with a bag of salt, green onion, and flank of beef. I used soy sauce instead of a bag of salt…it contains a bag of salt already hehehe. For a lower salt version it’s easy to just replace with low sodium soy sauce and still get tasty flavour.

  • atleast 1 pound of flank steak
  • 2/3 cup worcestershire sauce
  • 2/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tbl honey
  • 1 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 green onion, sliced
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes (or more if you want more kick)
  1. Trim the flank steak of as much fat as possible. Slice into thin strips and place in a large freezer bag.
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients and pour into the freezer bag. Turn the bag a few times to make sure the meat is coated. Squeeze out the air and seal. Keep in fridge to marinate 24 hours.
  3. Layer the meat in your dehydrator and follow it’s instructions. If you do not have a dehydrator you can do it using the oven method. Set the oven to 160F, place the beef on a broiling pan in a single layer. Pop into the oven with the door cracked open slightly for 8 hours.

Makes about 10 servings. Each serving contains 79 calories, 3.4 grams of fat, 2.2 grams of carbs, no fibre (big surprise there right? hehe), 9.3 grams of protein. Enjoy and have some safe camping trips all you hobbits out there!

Philly Cheese Steak

This is one of those recipes that isn’t much of a recipe really. More like an example of how to make those naughty things we love a bit healthier. My husband loves philly cheese steaks, especially when they come in pizza form. So with some leftover buns I decided to give making these healthier a go and see if they pass with the cheese steak eater. They did! Here is what I did.

  • Thinly sliced eye of round steak, tossed in montreal steak spice
  • thinly sliced 4 crimini mushrooms
  • thinly sliced 1/2 sweet onion
  • thinly sliced 1/2 red pepper
  • 4 sliced of reduced fat provolone cheese
  • 2 herbed sub buns
  1. Saute the steak in a hot pan until done. Remove and set aside and keep warm.
  2. Add the mushrooms and onions to the pan and cook until the juices come out and the onion caramelize slightly. You can add the red peppers to the cooking mixture if you like. I like mine to have some crunch left in them.
  3. Layer the steak in the cut buns, top with the mushroom and onion mixture. Layer red peppers on top and then the cheese.
  4. Arrange the sandwiches on a flat pan and put under the broiler until the cheese is bubbly. Serve!

Makes two subs. There is so much room for variation in this recipe it’s difficult to post nutritionals for it. I will say though that for us it was what I usually spend on dinner. This philly was totally conquered and really easy.

Meat Cupcake

Yup. You read that right. When I first brought our puppy Kaylee home, 2 years ago, I re-watched Firefly with her. She needed to see the real Kaylee that she was named after, she slept through most of it ofcourse. One moment that caught my eye was Simon’s birthday that takes place in the episode ‘out of gas’. Kaylee says (the character, not the dog…if the pup starts telling me things I understand, then the rumors of my craziness have no longer been exaggerated):

Kaylee: [about Simon’s birthday cake] Couldn’t get ahold of no flour, so it’s mostly protein. In fact, it’s pretty much what we just had for dinner.
[everyone laughs]
Kaylee: But I tried to get the frosting as chocolatey tasting as possible.

Hehe. So there it was, I too need to make a meat cake. Now, I didn’t make the frosting as chocolatey as possible but it does make for a mighty fine dinner.

  • 1 lb extra lean ground beef
  • 1/3 cup panko bread crubs
  • 1/2 cup garlic bbq sauce (divided into 1/4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbl dehydrated onion
  • 4 tbl egg substitute
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1/2 tsp italian spice blend
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup mashed potato
  1. Combine the ground beef, panko, 1/4 cup bbq sauce, parsley, dehydrated onion, egg substitute, garlic, and spices in a bowl until well mixed.
  2. Press the meat mixture into jumbo muffin cups (6) and top with the remaining 1/4 cup of bbq sauce.
  3. Bake at 350F for 40 minutes.
  4. Remove carefully from the muffin cups, place on your serving plate and top with mashed potatoes. I stuff my mashed potatoes in a sandwich bag, snipped the tip and piped onto each meat cake. Best done when the mashed potatoes are warm.

Makes 6 meat cupcakes, I do not include the potatoes in my serving analysis as everyone likes to make them different or even use the frozen ready made kind. Mine were made with just potatoes, a splash of chicken stock and a tbl of margarine. Each serving contains 224 calories, 13.2 grams of fat, .5 gram of fibre, 9.4 carbs, and 15.8 grams of protein. Each serving also contains a high dose of shiny. Heh, yet another firefly inspired meal…I need to get out more.

Hardcore Hobbit: Sandson’s Famous Hardboiled Eggs

I’ve been waiting so long to do this one. When I first glanced at the recipe in LOTRO I knew exactly what I had to do for these eggs. I’ve been waiting for that perfect time of year to do this. In the game these eggs are made with eggs and onions. They are described as “what seem to be normal hardboiled eggs are really Farmer Sandson’s famous recipe!”. How do you make hardboiled eggs with onions, you may ask. Simple! We’ve been doing it in my family for years! Start saving your yellow onions skins! I think this method makes them taste better than your average hardboiled egg but then it could just be because they are pretty.

  • 4 white large eggs
  • 1-2 cups of dry yellow onion skins
  • COLD water
  1. Place the eggs in a medium saucepan. Fill with enough cold water to cover with an inch of water from the top of the highest egg.
  2. Add the onion skins to the pot covering the eggs.
  3. Bring the water to a rolling boil over high heat. Once it begins to boil reduce the heat to medium and allow to cook for 10 minutes. The water will get beautiful and dark, that’s perfect.
  4. Remove from heat and immediately place the eggs into icy water to chill. This keeps those egg yolks pretty and yellow, instead of greenish. Chill for atleast 5 minutes. Longer is perfectly ok.
  5. Remove from the icy water, rub dry with a towel and serve! Or keep in the fridge with the shells on for up to a week.

Note: all the info I found for just one egg seems to vary. Check the package on your brand. For general info here is what I had: each egg contains 80 calories, 5 grams of fat, 0 carbs, 0 fibre, and 7 grams of protein. Also, I am not declaring for any particular sports team over there. I had them on hand and I live in Victoria, BC…I gotta put the Vancouver team up there lest I possibly face some sort of lynch mob or something. Hope you have as much fun making these as I do!

BTW you can totally make more than four with the amount of dye those egg skins will give you. Just cool and start again.

Hardcore Hobbit: Chicken Carrot Soup

So, here we are, all drenched from those april showers. It is still so cold out there! Must comfort our little hobbit selves with a bit of soup I say. In LOTRO chicken carrot soup is made from carrots, green onion, and chicken stock. To do something different with the soup I added some matzo or matza balls to it instead of noodles, rice, etc. All I did was use a mix and drop them in during the last 20 minutes of cooking. So delicious. If you havent’ tried matzo balls before you should really give them atleast one chance. They are delicious and filling! My husband has been asking when I plan to cook with them again. One day I will definitely have to make some of my own, for now I trust the mix. Another fun addition was the use of “carrot noodles” they make it so the carrot flavour is everywhere in the soup but more fun texture wise.

  • 3 medium carrots
  • 6 cups hardcore hobbit chicken stock
  • 150 grams shredded cooked chicken (may already be in your stock)
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground pepper
  • 1 tbl italian seasoning
  • 10 matzo balls (optional)
  1. Using a peeler shave the carrots into noodles. Cut the length if they are longer than desired.
  2. Add all the ingredients except the matzo balls to a crockpot. Cook low for 6-8 hours.
  3. Add matzo balls during the last 20 minutes of cooking.

Makes 5 servings. Nutritional info does not include the matzo balls as they are optional. Each serving contains 66 calories, .6 gram of fat, 4.7 grams carbs, 1.2 grams of fibre, and 10.4 grams of protein. These servings are pretty big too! About 2 cups of broth and carrots. Plenty of room for a couple of matzo balls I say!

Butternut Squash Soup

My first taste of butternut squash soup was at a marche restaurant in Toronto. I was so blown away by its creaminess and flavour I worked hard to recreate it. I think I’ve come close and on top of that it is completely healthy. Theirs probably had cream in it but I have found that this recipe just doesn’t need it. It is tasty and creamy all on its own. Pair this with some fresh baked bread and you really have a heavenly meal. It’s a favourite of mine really, especially when it is cold and rainy. Which happens often out here!

  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 leeks, white part only, chopped
  • 2 lbs butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 bartlett pear, cored and chopped
  • 6 cup water or chicken stock
  • 2 purple basil leaves, chopped finely
  • 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  1. Heat the olive oil in a soup pot. Add the onion, carrots, and leeks. Saute until carmelization occurs.
  2. Add the squash, pear, stock or water, basil and pie spice. Season with some salt and pepper. Allow to simmer until the squash and pear are tender, about 15-20 minutes.
  3. Puree the soup using a hand blender or in batches in a regular blender until it is smooth.
  4. Reheat the soup and serve.

Makes 8 large portions. Each portion (about 2 cups) is 72 calories, .8 gram fat, 4.4 grams fibre, 17.2 grams carbs, 1.3 grams protein. Calculated if water is used instead of stock. If you need a bit of extra creaminess a dollop of fat free sour cream is excellent in this. I don’t usually do that, made for a pretty picture though!

Hardcore Hobbit: Rack of Lamb with Mint Sauce

In the game this lamb dish is made with mint sauce, mixed herbs and rack of lamb. This is definitely a special occasion dish, I don’t know many people who have a rack of lamb on any old weekday night. It was definitely a hit, the lamb was so tender and the mint sauce drizzled on was just perfect! I can’t wait to do it again sometime. I’m hoping next time we can grill the meat. I have a feeling that grilling this will lead to epic levels of tasty.

  • Rack of lamb
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 medium onion
  • 2 tbl fresh tarragon leaves
  • 1 tbl malt vinegar
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Hardcore Hobbit Mint Sauce
  1. Puree the onion, garlic, lemon juice, tarragon, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper in a blender. Massage the marinade onto the rack of lamb and allow to sit, refrigerated for atleast 4 hours.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400F and heat a pan over medium high heat. Spray with cooking spray.
  3. Sear the lamb on both sides in the pan. Move the lamb to the oven and cook for 20-30 minutes.
  4. Cover the lamb with foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving.
  5. Drizzle with a bit of mint sauce just before serving.

You know what. Just because this is a special occasion dish let’s not talk about the nutritional info just this once. Keep in mind though the more you trim some of that fat off your rack of lamb the healthier it is. Don’t trim too much off though or you will sacrifice flavour. Serves 4 ( two chops each typically). Amazing when served with a side of pan seared polenta and on a bed of wilted spinach as pictured.

Hardcore Hobbit: Barley Stew

Alright, it’s a barley risotto. So creamy, so nummy, and so filling. According to the game barley stew is made with barley and coney stock. Well, to me when you get a grain like that and some stock together it just begs to be made into a risotto. Yes the barley tells me to do things. You can hear it too…I know you can…don’t deny it. Granted, my husband claims I have already made barley stew…that one time I was a bit overzealous adding the barley to the soup. It was tasty yes but this is more elegant and involves mushrooms. What self-respecting hobbit turns down another opportunity for mushrooms? Exactly.

  • 1 cup barley
  • 200g mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed and minced
  • 3 cup coney stock (any stock of choice works here too, chicken especially)
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 14 g parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tbl dried parsley (more if using fresh)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • cooking spray
  1. Combine the stock and the wine in a pot and heat to near boiling. Lower the heat to low and allow to simmer. We want to keep that good and warm for when we make the risotto.
  2. Spray a pan and heat to medium. Add sliced mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently until done. About 2-4 minutes depending on desired doneness. Remove from pan and set aside.
  3. Add the shallot and garlic to the pan. Cook until the shallots begin to turn golden.
  4. Add the barley to the pan and toast for a couple of minutes. Stirring constantly.
  5. Now is the time to have your adventure in babysitting. Add the stock mixture one or two ladles at a time. Allow the liquid to mostly absorb before adding another ladle.  This process takes around 20 minutes, so be patient and keep stirring.
  6. After the last ladle has been poured in and mostly absorbed, add the parsley, parmesan, mushrooms, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and serve immediately.

I like this topped with an additional tablespoon of parmesan but that is not included in the nutritional info. Serves four, each serving contains 252 calories, 1.8 grams of fat and 8.5 grams of fibre. I know! Check out that fibre. That’s the reason why you feel so full after eating this side dish. You can serve this for two as a main dish. Prepare to be super full! I love risotto.

Salisbury Steak with Mushroom Gravy

We are still locked in those cold days of winter so we need something comforting and warming. I always shake my head when I see those frozen entree salisbury steak dinners. We can do so much better with just a bit of prep. You can even form these patties ahead of time, refrigerate or freeze them (as long as you started with fresh meat ofcourse). You could get this dish on the table in the time it takes to make one of those frozen dinners in the oven. Hehe, I can’t compete with the microwave. Want to know something interesting, they eat this in Japan. It is that international a dish, although out there they call it Hanbagu. I just like saying it, it makes me feel very engrish. Hanbagu is awesome! Fear the hanbagu! We love you hanbagu!

  • 400 grams extra lean ground beef
  • 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 200 grams mushrooms
  • 2 pkg beef oxo, reduced salt
  • 1 tbl light butter
  • 2 tbl cornstarch
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tbl montreal steak spice
  • 1 tsp worcestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Combine the beef, garlic, worcestershire sauce and montreal steak spice in a bowl. Form the mixture into small patties and set aside.
  2. Heat a pan to medium. Spray and add onions and mushrooms, cook until desired doneness, remove from pan. If you like a chunky gravy just set them aside. If you prefer a smoother gravy puree these with the water and set aside.
  3. Add the patties to the pan and sear on each side. Traditionally, you will finish cooking these in your gravy. If you are doing these remove them and set aside. If not, then cook until done.
  4. While the patties are searing or cooking. Add the cornstarch, oxo and butter to a small pot. Allow the butter to melt and stir to combine with the dry ingredient. Add the water or puree slowly, whisking the whole time to avoid lumps. Bring the sauce to a boil. If you had the onions and mushrooms set aside add them now.
  5. If you are cooking the patties in the sauce place them in your gravy now and allow to simmer covered for 20-30 minutes. If you opted for the cooked patties serve the sauce over the patties and enjoy!

Serves 4. Each serving of patties and mushroom gravy contains 291 calories, 18 grams of fat and 1.1 grams of fibre. Definitely one of those comfort foods, it may be low in calories but the fat is something you don’t want to do everyday. Tasty with rustic mashed potatoes (especially those royal mashed potatoes) and some cooked carrots.