Welcome to my BlogSpot. I have created this blog in hopes of inspiring everyone to cook. I have found my inspiration from living in both Southern and Northern California. My influences in flavors have come from family recipes and meals with emphasis on healthy foods, marrying into an Italian family and the ethnic flavors throughout California. There are so many wonderful memories connected to our family dishes as well as new memories in the dishes that have been recently created. My husband, Randy who is recently retired, has been my biggest supporter and inspiration in our kitchen. He is my taster, my sous chef, and has created some really great dishes himself, which will be added to this blog. It is my hope that you too will be inspired to cook and create your own dishes for your loved ones and enjoy the craft of cooking.

One thing I ask of you is if you print out, email and pass out my recipes, please include my name and link.

Be sure to check out my Sweaty Equities blog about the ups and downs of crafty projects and our DIY remodels.
You can find it at http://sweatyequities.blogspot.com/

Friday, April 20, 2012

Dog Food (and people casserole if you like )

Libby (our foster) Tinker and Tiger --sitting
When you have Bichon Frise Dogs the last thing you want to feed them is a gravy based dog food. –What a mess in their beards! Ever since the Chinese dog food scare, I have been very careful to make sure that my dog’s food was not made in China. The contamination was caused by melamine in the affected foods and many animals suffered and died. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007_pet_food_recalls
Costco had a great dog food, but suddenly decided to add gravy to their products. Now what was I going to do? Well I sought out the essential ingredients that my dogs needed for optimum health and did the math and decided that it was actually cheaper to buy the ingredients and make it myself. Keep in mind that I buy in bulk to keep costs down.
My dogs love this recipe and so do the people and it’s so easy.

1 Quart Chicken Stock
4 Cups Water
1 Tablespoon Salt

2 Teaspoons Dried Basil

1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano

11 Boneless, Skinless, Chicken Thighs (about ½ bag that you get at Costco)
Combine these ingredients in a large pot. Bring to a boil and turn down to a simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the vegetables and bring back to boil before adding rice.

6 Stalks Celery, diced
10-12 Carrots, sliced
1 bag frozen peas

Bring back to boil.

3-1/2 Cups Whole Grain Rice
Add these ingredients to a large pot. Bring to boil and reduce to light simmer for about 50 minutes or until the rice has almost absorbed all the liquid. Turn off heat and let stand another 30 minutes until all the rice has absorbed the liquid. Keep refrigerated.

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