Saturday, October 20, 2018

Baseball World Series 2018 - Recipes

Batter up! And that's just the coating for my MVP Fried Chicken recipe. Are you ready for the Word Series of cheap$kate eats? Just step up to the plate and allow me to pitch some tasty entrees your way, that you can serve up while viewing the Los Angeles Dodgers battle the Boston Red Sox for baseball's 2018 edition of Major League Baseball's championship series.

Nibble: to pitch along the far edges of the strike zone, around home plate.

The Penny Pinch Hitting Chef has a dugout full of recipes for baseball lovers that will leave enough green in your wallet to buy an extra keg of beer for your tailgate party. Just click on any recipe name below to see what I mean. There are no foul balls in this recipe list!

First at bat, hot dogs are the kings and queens of the ballpark. And boy does this Knight of the Round Dinner Table have a couple of royal recipes for you to try.

High Cheese: A fastball thrown high over the plate.

For Dodger fans, the LA Street Dog is the grand slam of tube steaks. If you have never had one, you don't know what you're missing.  It's a kaleidoscopic flavor bomb of bacon wrapped wieners sauteed with sliced bell peppers, onion, slathered with mustard, mayo and ketchup and topped with a grilled whole jalapeno....whew, now that's a mouthful.

Check out my recipe video below, where I also take you to the back alleys of downtown Los Angeles to see for yourself how they do it in the streets.

 Homemade L.A. Street Dog -- A Delicious Hot Mess! 

Behold the Chicago Dog:  it's a warm, rosy-red grilled frank topped with mustard, nestled in a black-speckled poppy seed bun, flanked by half wagon wheel slices of tomato, Day-Glo green relish, chopped onion, a wedge of pickle, two sport peppers, and finished with a sprinkle of celery salt.

This is the real thing; just looking at it makes me shudder from the winter chill on a blustery, cloudy Chicago day. Now that you have the recipe make your own version using easy-to-get regular pickle relish, just don't tell Cubbie fans or you may get aced with a beanball.

Authentic Chicago Dogs can be had here is Los Angeles, too, at the exceptional Fab Hot Dogs in the San Fernando Valley. So all you Windy City transplants will definitely feel at home there. Check out my video below to see how a Chicago Dog is done right.

Tired of stale, soggy stadium hot dogs? I have a great and easy Corn Dog Recipe made with Vienna sausages -- but you can use regular wieners. There will be no foul balls as your hungry guests dip these crunchy coated pig skins into my tasty honey-mustard sauce.

Since you have the fryer going you might as well make a batch of my Krispy Kreme Doughnuts. They're as light and airy as the Goodyear blimp.

Ran out of hot dog buns? Well toss a few wieners or sausages on the grill and try my version of a Currywurst. Your recipe batting average just doubled when you slather on grilled tubes steaks: my spicy mix of ketchup, cumin and cayenne spices. It's also a great starter appetizer on game day.

Boston Red Sox revelers will eat up my riff on a Lobster Roll -- a cheaper Scallop Roll. And if East Coast fans can't make it Los Angeles, then throw another log on the fire and gather in front of the big screen with a steaming bowl of my cheap$kate Clam Chowder.

 Scallop Roll

Rhubarb: a bench-clearing baseball brawl.

The flyover states love a succulent and smoky BBQ Pulled Pork. No need to travel to the coasts for delish eats, touch down right here for my succulent pork recipe.

BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich

Smoked pork rules in the Lone Star State. My Pulled Pork recipe is easy and cheap to make, of course. Just check out the video below or click here to see all the tasty recipe details.

Texas is known for meaty Chili. Southerns love their Chili with or without beans. While beef is expensive, I get around that by using cheap beef shank. Once you've cooked it down for a few hours, beef shank is as tender as any pricey cut of meat. My Homemade Meat and Bean Chili recipe is perfect for your sports gathering and can be served during all 9 innings of the game - make plenty just in case the game goes into extra innings.

Set the Table: getting runners on base, ahead of a power hitter.

Next to pizza and hotdogs, Fried Chicken is a fan favorite. And I've come up with a crunchy coating that will empty the bleachers and have fans storming the kitchen! Kickoff the World Series with my Fried Chicken Sandwich Recipe or use my special flour and spice mix for regular bone-in chicken parts. My mouthwatering video below is better than an inside-the-park home run.

Your boys and girls of summer will take a 7th inning stretch and huddle around your cast iron pot of my Mom's fragrant and spicy Chicken & Sausage Jambalaya and Cajun Gumbo.

Mom's Cajun Sausage and Chicken Gumbo

Serve a pitcher's mound size plate of Teriyaki Spam Musubi for your Hawaiian friends.

Spam Musubi

Or, set out shredded slow cooked pork, chopped onion and cilantro, with warm tortillas and your favorite salsa, for Mexican Carnitas Tacos. Your food fans will start a wave, from the living room to the kitchen table.

Can of Corn: An easy to catch high fly ball to the outfield.

 Does beer go with Steamed Articokes?'ll have to try out my recipe to find out - do let me know if you try it!

If fish is on your mind then hook your bleacher bums with some of my homemade Sushi Recipes. Try tagging out a Spicy Tuna or California Roll. How about setting up a Fielder's choice of chopped veggies and fresh fish and roll your own delicious Hand Rolls? It's easier than you think, and I have simple photo-illustrated instructions a click away, here.

My Fish Tacos deserve the MVP award for deliciousness. I make mine Baja, Mexico-style, that is, battered and fried tender fish fillets with a cabbage and creme topping.

Fish Taco

While everyone's watching the pre-game show send in any of my delicious dugout sides, including: Bacon Wrapped Dates, Tomato & Basil Bruschetta, Deviled Eggs, Portabella Mushroom Fries, Sweet Fried Plantains, Ceviche with Avocado and Black Beans, and Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce.

Crack a few eggs for a meal most fowl, not foul -- click here to see my Veggie Frittata recipe that will feed all your hungry team players (add some ham pieces to fill out the frittata.)

Dying Quail: a fly ball weakly hit, that lands in between the infield and the outfield.

There will be no need for rain checks when you serve a sandwich plate of gooey, cheesy Patty Melts, hearty Meatball Subs, Homemade Deli Pastrami, Falafel Pitas, and steaming Sloppy Joe's.

If you're looking for one pot meals, so you don't miss any action on the field of dreams, just check out my Pork Bourguignon, French Cassoulet, Chicken Tinga StewMr. Patti's Red Beans & Rice, Baked Pasta with Cheese and Cauliflower, Baked Lasagna with Ground Chicken, Shepherd's Pie, or Sausage & Sauerkraut with Beer recipes.

Baked Lasagna with Ground Chicken

Looking for a relief pitching recipe? How about a different twist on Buffalo Wings with my African Spiced Water Buffalo Wings? This original recipe features chicken legs, but you can substitute wings.

The Cheap$kate Chef's Turkey & Black Beans Chili recipe will add extra points on your scoreboard for flavor. Make it spicy, but be sure to have an ice chest full of brews for all your bench-warming guests.

And don't forget to send in from this Whisk Welding Culinary Coach a most versatile of plated plays, the Pita Pizza -- a varied list of toppings you can use would fill the coaches chalkboard.

Pita Pizza

So dig deep into my bullpen and click on any of the tasty treat names above to watch an instant reply of recipes from my blog. Your guest will be cheering you on -- from their cheap seats!

I'll leave you with my wacky video below, where I swing at all types of produce...and knock them out of the ballpark!

Batter Up!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Best Lamb Curry with Vegetables - Video Recipe

My latest recipe is loaded with veggies, too. Lamb Curry with Vegetables starts with a basic meat curry, then when that is ready I add the veggies and finish it up - so, my latest recipe is a twofer: Lamb Curry and Lamb Curry with Veggies.

Curry comes in all flavors depending on the region of origin, from India to Thailand. I am making a simple India-style curry. Even in India, curries vary from region to region.

I make a basic Cheap$kate Lamb Curry with spices, coconut milk, tomato sauce, onion and garlic. All I do is saute the meat and onion, spices, then add liquids, cover and simmer the Curry about 2 hours, or until the lamb is fall-off-the-bone tender.

And I build a basic curry powder from scratch, but if you have access to pre-made curry powder then it's okay to use it. The spices I use are mostly easy to get and include: ground cumin, ginger, cinnamon, and coriander.

It's okay to mix and match my curry ingredients. If you don't have coriander then leave it out. Spices can be expensive, but I'm lucky to have  99c only Stores to shop in.

The main curry powder ingredient is ground cumin, if that's all you can get, then use only that- all the other spices just make the curry powder more complex.

Click on any photo to see larger.

For a richer curry I add coconut milk or cream, and tomato sauce. This adds sweet and acidic layers of flavor. Okay to leave out coconut milk for a light curry sauce. I get both ingredients from my local 99c only Store and Dollar Tree.

For meat, I sometimes splurge with pricy, pungent lamb. You can substitute with cheap chicken or pork.

 Depending on the meat, some cheap cuts of lamb, beef or pork can be very tough, so a 2 to 3 hour simmering time is needed. I leave fat and bone attached, for extra flavor. With long simmering times, some fat will liquefy and the bone will seperate from flesh. Any tough meat will tenderize. Cooking time varies depending on simmering temperature.

This is the kind of curry you can leave heating on the stovetop -- just check from time to time and add more water or broth as needed.

Click on any photo to see larger.

I fill out this Lamb Curry with a lot of cheap veggies that include: onion, bell pepper, carrot and potato.

You can add any fave veggies you like, such as: spinach, kale, cauliflower, squash, and green beans. My local Latin market has great deals on veggies.

After my basic Cheap$kate Lamb Curry is done, I add the veggies and cook another 45 minutes. You can adjust the cooking time if you like veggies crunchy or soft.

I don't make this recipe too often as lamb is a bit expensive, but sometimes I gotta have a Lamb Curry with Vegetables -- damn the price!

Best Lamb Curry with Vegetables - Video

Play it here. Video runs 4 minutes, 46 seconds.

My YouTube video link for viewing or embedding, just click here.

Ingredients (about 2-3 servings)
  • 1 to 2 pounds of lamb  - slice into bite sizes. Okay to substitute any meat, including chicken, turkey, beef and pork.) The balance of meat to veggies is up to you.
  • 1 tablespoon cumin powder - okay to substitute cumin with a favorite curry powder  (if you use a pre-mix curry powder, then leave out the other spices that follow.)
  • 1 teaspoon powdered ginger - or fresh chopped ginger.
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon - okay to use a cinnamon stick.
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 13.5 ounces coconut milk or cream - one regular size can.
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce - one small can.
  • 1 onion chopped - white, yellow or red onion.
  • 1 tablespoon garlic - chopped (jar or fresh.) Okay to use garlic powder.
  • 1 bell pepper - chopped
  • 1 carrot - chopped
  • 1 potato - chopped. I used a large russet potato.
  • 1 tablespoon oil - to saute lamb.
  •  1 cup of water or broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

*Other curry spices - garam masala, chili powder and turmeric. About a teaspoon each. Okay to mix and match what you like to make a curry powder, but always start with a tablespoon of cumin.

Slice lamb into bite-sized pieces. Okay to trim off some fat and remove bone. I like to keep most of the fat and leave bone in for extra flavor.

Add a tablespoon of oil to a medium heated pan. Add lamb and brown one side about 5 to 10 minutes, depending on how hot the pan is.

As meat browns, roughly chop one onion. Once meat is brown on one side then add the chopped onion and saute until soft, about 5 minutes.

Add curry spices, including: cumin, ginger, cumin, cinnamon and coriander. Okay to use a favorite pre-mixed curry powder.

click on any photo to see larger

Salt and pepper to taste, then add chopped fresh garlic or garlic powder. Mix well and saute dried spices and garlic for a minute or so.

Add one can of coconut milk or cream, a small can of tomato sauce, and a cup of water or broth. Mix well and bring up to a low simmer.

Cover and cook until lamb is tender, about 2 hours. Other types of meat may cook quicker. Chicken takes about an hour. Check from time to time, making sure liquid does not cook out. Add a little water or broth if needed.

This is a basic Lamb Curry. You can stop here if you like, I sometimes do.

The idea is to make a simple Lamb Curry with onion and spices, and cook it until tender. Then you add rest of veggies and cook them just enough to slightly soften.

 If you added all the veggies at once, in the beginning, they would cook until way too mushy for my taste.

While Lamb Curry cooks, chop the rest of veggies. After the lamb is tender, add chopped bell pepper, carrot and potato. You can add any favorite veggies you like including: cauliflower, green beans, squash and spinach.

Bring to a low simmer. Cover and cook veggies until they reach desired tenderness, about half hour to 45 minutes.

I like to serve my Lamb Curry and Veggies over rice.

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Jambalaya Shoppe - Swamp Chef Cheap$kate Review

The Swamp Chef was literally born on the bayou. You've heard of a brother from another mother? Well, the 99 Cent Chef and the Swamp Chef are lads from different dad! Now, that's a story Mom will have to tell on another day.

Both chefs know how to eat cheaply, too. While the 99 Cent Chef is a city boy from Los Angeles feasting on street tacos, the Swamp Chef roams the backroads and swamps of the South, digging deep for fried and long simmering Cajun eats.

When I'm in Louisiana visiting Mom, I often run into the Swamp Chef and am only too happy to tag along and shoot him trying out the local cuisine.

Our first video together is done in Gonzales, Louisiana, known as the Jambalaya Capital of the World.

You can get Cajun-style Jambalaya all over town, but for the cheapest and tastiest look no further than The Jambalaya Shoppe.

Click on any photo to see larger.

 It is a small roadside stand with friendly service. Click here to read a nice article about their 26th Anniversary. And since the food is pre-cooked, your order is ready in a couple of minutes. And don't worry, Jambalaya tastes even better when it has been setting a while.

Cajun-style Jambalaya is different than Creole-style. There is no tomato sauce in Cajun-style Jambalaya - just meat, seasonings and rice.  You can go to New Orleans for tomato Creole-style Jambalaya.

Of course, the locals make Jambalaya the way they like it, usually with sauteed onion, garlic and Cajun seasonings. As for meat you can get chicken and smoked sausage, or pork and smoked sausage. For this Cheap$kate Review, the Swamp Chef got Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya.

You can get only Jambalaya for $6, or order a plate that comes with Cajun Potato Salad and White Beans with a small white bread Dinner Roll for $7. It's a cheap and hearty plate that will fill you right up!

The White Beans are creamy tender - almost mushy, but in a rich flavorful way. They are mild tasting and not spicy.

And the Potato Salad is Cajun-style, that is, creamy with mayo and mustard, and the potato chunks extra soft. Our Mom has a delish version a click away, here.

As mentioned earlier the Jambalaya is a dry version, kinda like Dirty Rice or a Chinese stirfry rice. The rice soaks up the browning from the meat - that is the trick to making a Cajun-style Jambalaya. You can see how our Mom does hers another click away, here.

Jambalaya meat is either chicken or chunks of tender pork and sausage. Louisiana is known for meaty and pungent Andouille sausage, but this is closer to regular mild smoked sausage, although it's a chunky and rough ground link like Andouille sausage.

The links are on the small size, but you get plenty of slices. Cajun food is spicy, but this Jambalaya is not, so go ahead and feed the kids, and set out Louisiana hot sauce for the grown ups.

You can order large buckets of Jambalaya if you are throwing a party or have visitors. They have a few other menu items that come and go depending on the season, like Gumbo and Pastalaya (just like rice Jambalaya, but made with spaghetti.) I've had it all there and have not been disappointed.

You don't come here for the ambiance, you come here to chow down! Locals get Jambalaya to go, but there's a picnic table if you can't wait. And one word of warning, don't wait until the end of the day to get yours, often they will close early because they run out of Jambalaya.


You can visit their website to see what's happening foodwise and get the exact address and serving hours. There are a dozen Jambalaya Shoppes in the area, now.

It was a hot day in Louisiana when I shot the Swamp Chef, but there is a local favorite way to cool things off...a drive-thru frosty Daiquair stop. Since I was shooting, we got the Happy Hour 2 for 1 special that day. We both like a White Russian, made with coffee and chocolate flavors and milk, plus plenty of Everclear alcohol -- Ooh, Wee.

If you have never had a local drive-thru Daiquiri think of a 7-Eleven convenience store Slurpee, with a boozy kick. Daiquiris come in many fruit flavors too, Mom likes her Strawberry Daiquiri, which you can see us getting ours, here.

After picking up the Daiquiris, I followed the Swamp Chef to Jambalaya Park in Gonzales. We sat ourselves down and shot the Cheap$kate Dining Review for my food blog. And how does a Jambalaya Plate with Cajun Potato Salad and White Beans by The Jambalaya Shoppe rate on my Cheap$kate Dining Scale of 1 to 9, 9 being best?

Well, check out my video below of the Swamp Chef to find out! And be sure to come back soon, I have more Swamp Chef episodes on the way.

Jambalaya Shoppe Cheap$kate Review - VIDEO

Play it here, video runs 4 minutes 46 seconds

My YouTube video link for viewing or embedding, just click here.

My favorite Jambalaya Shoppe is here:
1503 N. Airline Hwy.
Gonzales, LA 70737
phone: 225-647-6050

Restaurant Hours
Monday-Wednesday: 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Thursday-Saturday: 10 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Sunday: 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.

*They sometimes close early if Jambalaya sells out!

Jambalaya Shoppe website is

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