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May 28, 2007

Jin's Trier Squares

Yay! I've been hoping Jin over at Jintrinsique would be able to contribute to BWC soon (despite being continually swamped and beyond busy)! Go have a quick look at her blog to get a "Jintaste" of her marvelous creations, and then come on back to see about her great Trier Squares recipe, which she has given me permission to reproduce here! This is taken straight from her March 2006 post - word for word (well, almost!) and glorious picture for picture! By her words alone, can't you just feel the LOVE Jin puts into her creations???? Can't you just about taste them - right through your computer screen??? Hey ... STOP that!!!! You're not supposed to actually lick your computer screen!!! Teeheeheehee ... thanks soooo much Jin!



"I enjoy making these bars more than anything else. It's not one of my favourites to eat; but to create them...ahhh...the scents of all the ingredients are the most incredible! I will do my best to describe them as I go through the recipe.

They are named after the town of Trier, located on the banks of the Mosel River in southwestern Germany. These bars are are filled with a vegetarian version of mincemeat. You could make them into mini tarts, a large tart (no pun intended; my British husband would laugh hysterically at this), a pie, or, as I do here, in a 12"x18" pan."

SHORTBREAD CRUST
Cream in mixer (w/ paddle), food processor or by hand:
1# Unsalted Butter, I use European Style (less water content)
1 cup Sugar
1 Egg

Slowly add enough unbleached flour, I use organic bread flour, until the dough forms a ball. (The amount of flour varies with your ingredient quality. You can start with about 1# of flour.) It will be slightly sticky.

Put dough in the freezer or refrigerator until it starts to firm up.

Roll 2/3 of your dough into the bottom of a parchment lined 12"x18" pan. Freeze or refrigerate until firm.

Roll out the remaining dough. Cut strips about 1/2"-3/4" wide. Chill & reserve for the lattice decoration on the top of the bars.

JAM LAYER
Spread about 1-1/2 cups of jam, preserves or fruit spread on the crust. I've already used Apricot, Strawberry & Raspberry. It's really your preference

....the really yummy part is coming up...

TRIER FILLING
Stir together in a medium sized bowl:
1# Sliced Almonds
1# Sugar
10 oz. Sultanas
2 teaspoons Penzey's Ceylon Cinnamon

TRIER FILLING, INTERRUPTION...
...a few notes here......
1. If you don't have sultanas (golden raisins) go ahead & use regular raisins, or, try something different like dried blueberries, cherries, chopped apricots, etc. Remember - a recipe is only a starting point!
2. Penzey's is a spice house that has some phenomenal spices, herbs, extracts, etc. I order many things from them. Sure, you can substitute plain old cinnamon for this. But, in my opinion, you will be missing out on one of my favourite parts of making these. Ceylon cinnamon, 'true' cinnamon has a very citrusy smell & taste. It's not nearly as strong as Vietnamese cinnamon which I absolutely LOVE, but is not suited to this particular recipe. I highly recommend, upon opening the jar of Ceylon cinnamon, to inhale deeply, several times. Ahhh, I swear it's an antidepressant! :-)
3. I also just love the sound of this mixture. Yes, I said sound. The crunch of the sliced almonds swishing against the granulated sugar inside the stainless steel bowl. Phusssht, swish, crunch, tink tink tink, phusssht, swish, crunch, tink tink.

BACK TO FINISHING THE TRIER FILLING

Add to the above mixture & stir well:
1/2 cup Milk or cream
1/4 cup Lemon juice (only use the pure stuff, nothing from concentrate!)

...are you ready for the best part? You are going to make beurre noisette, "brown butter".

Put 7 oz. unsalted butter in a large sauce pan. Heat on medium-high until the butter is melted. turn the heat down to medium-low & continue to cook until the water evaporates & the butter solids drop to the bottom of the pan & turn brown. Turn off the heat, stand back slightly, & add 1 Tablespoon of Neilson Massey Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla

...crackle crackle crackle crackle, pop pop, crackle crackle crackle...the second it stops spitting out of the pan, waft that steam ALL AROUND the kitchen! To me this is the most wonderful fragrance on the planet! Because your butter is hot, the alcohol in the vanilla burns off instantly, leaving you with a buttery, nutty vanilla essence that is divine.

As soon as you recover from your state-of-bliss, pour this over your almond mixture, stir together thoroughly, (note how the cinnamon scent changes as you add the warm butter!) & pour it over your jam layer, spreading evenly. Top with your lattice stripes & brush the pastry with an egg wash. Bake in the lower third of your oven @ 375 degrees F. for 40-50 minutes, until golden brown.

Cool, slice & ENJOY!!!

Chicken and Dumplings

Ingredients:
1 stewing or fryer chicken
1 diced carrot
1 diced potato
parsley
salt
pepper
garlic powder (not garlic salt, otherwise stew might be too salty)
1 8 oz package wide egg noodles

Stew chicken in seasoned water until tender (seasonings being the parsley, salt, pepper, garlic powder - and any other flavorings you like. For instance, I sometimes chunk up onions, turnips, celery, broccoli stems or whatever might be left overs that I want to use up - they all add great flavor!). You'll want to slow stew the chicken and broth for a number of hours, until chicken practically falls off the bones. Using a slow cooker, set on its lowest setting, while you're away at work all day works great!

Remove, cool and debone the chicken, but first: stick the entire pot of stew broth (veggies and all!) into the refrigerator or freezer, to quick-cool, so it'll be easier to skim later. Then return to deboning the chicken. Deboning is the process of picking the meat from the bones, and then tearing or cutting into bite-sized pieces. Discard all bones and cartilage. I personally remove and discard all skin, too.

Next, skim the broth (it should be sufficiently chilled now). Doing a very thorough job of this is important, especially if you stewed the bird with the skin on. You will want to get rid of all that fat and bits of skin, as well as the veggies and large pieces of herbs, so that you'll be left with as clear a broth as possible. If the broth was chilled sufficiently, all the fat and skin will have congealed on the surface, making it easy to simply scoop off carefully with a spoon. If not cooled sufficiently, skimming can still be done but is a bit trickier. Try using a pastry brush (wiping the surface gently, and rinsing the brush often), or even using the leafy part of a celery stalk or a lettuce leaf as a brush. If the broth still looks "murky" or you still see bits floating about, you can strain through a fine mesh strainer as the final step.

Next, add the chicken, diced carrot and diced potato to the broth. If you like other veggies in this dish, feel free to add whatever you like. Cook until tender. Lastly: add the noodles and cook only until about 1/2 way soft.

While the noodles are getting 1/2 done, prepare the dumplings:
2 cups (16 oz.) All Purpose Baking Mix
2/3 cup milk
Mix together just long enough to blend well, don't over work. Form the dumplings by slightly overfilling a large Tablespoon and then dropping into the broth.

Important: Here are the Tricks to making Excellent Dumplings:
1. Drop in so that they do not touch
2. Work quickly so that the entire batch of dumplings will remain uncovered as little as possible
3. Once all the dumplings are in, cover with a tight fitting lid, turn heat down to simmer, and ...
4. DO NOT LIFT THAT LID!! Not for anything! For at least a full 15 minutes!!!
(Honest - not lifting the lid is the secret!)

Impossible Pie

Ingredients:
1/2 cup (4 oz.) sugar
4 eggs
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons meted butter
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup All Purpose Baking Mix

Process:
Preheat oven to 400F (205C).
Butter a 9 inch pie plate.

In a blender, combine sugar, eggs, milk, vanilla, melted butter, cinnamon and nutmeg - blending until smooth. Add All Purpose Baking Mix and blend 30 more seconds.

Pour into prepared pie pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden.
Cool slightly, serving warm.
The finished product should be spicy with a custard bottom and cake-like crust on top!

Beer Battered Fish

This is another recipe that can be made from the All Purpose Baking Mix, and since Fish & Chips is one of my all-time favorite dishes, I make it often! Enjoy! .... EC

Beer Battered Fish
1 lb fish fillets of your choice, or large shrimp
1 cup + 3-4 Tablespoons All Purpose Baking Mix
1/2 teaspoon salt (I use sea salt)
Fresh ground pepper to taste - roughly 1/2 teaspoon
1/4 teaspoon dill or dried parsley
1 egg
1/2 cup beer (sip the rest while cooking!)

Mix the all-purpose mix, salt, pepper, spices, egg, and beer until smooth. Lightly coat each fish piece first in flour and then by dipping into batter, letting excess drip back into the bowl. Fry in deep fat (enough to cover and allow fish to float) set to 350 degrees F, until golden brown (roughly 2 minutes each side for fish). Drain and season (immediately) with salt & pepper. Enjoy!

English Griddle Scones

This is a recipe I came across recently in my recipe treasure trove. Scones can, of course, be baked at 400F (205C) for 10 to 12 minutes. But I like this griddle version a lot - maybe because of the recipe for Peach Devonshire Cream attached to it! No matter how the scone is made - I strongly hold that a scone should be gently pulled apart with a fork or fingers, and not ever cut, in order to preserve their tender texture. .... EC

Ingredients:
3-1/2 cups (28 oz.) All Purpose Baking Mix
2 eggs, room temperature
2 Tablespoons honey
1/2 cup whipping cream
Peach Devonshire Cream

Peach Devonshire Cream:
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream, well chilled
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup diced, fresh peaches (if you truly must use canned or frozen - be sure to drain them well!)

1. In a bowl or electric mixer, combine whipping cream and brown sugar. Let stand 2 or 3 minutes.
2. Whip cream mixture until firm peaks form.
3. Gently fold in sour cream and peaches.
4. Spoon into a medium serving dish, cover and refrigerate.
5. Serve cold. Should make about 2-1/2 cups.

Process:
Put All Purpose Baking Mix in a large bowl. Add eggs, honey and whipping cream, them mix all with a fork just until blended and a ball forms.

Turn out onto a generously floured surface. Flour your hands and gently pat or press dough only until it holds together. Do not over handle this dough! Cut dough in half. Pat each half into a circle about 1/2 inch thick. Cut each circle into quarters.

Preheat an ungreased griddle or skillet over medium-low to low heat. Gently place the scones on the hot surface. When bottoms are lightly browned and scones rise slightly, 8 to 10 minutes, turn and brown other side, 6 to 8 minutes.

Serve hot with Peach Devonshire Cream.

Caramel Nut Pudding Cake

Ingredients:
1 cup (8 oz.) All Purpose Baking Mix
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup raisins, if desired
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup milk
Brown Sugar Topping

Brown Sugar Topping:
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 Tablespoon butter or margarine
2 cups boiling water
When time to prepare: combine and blend well.

Process:
Preheat oven to 375F (190C).
Lightly grease a an 8 inch, square pan.

In a medium bowl combine All Purpose Mix, brown sugar, raisins (if desired) and nuts. Mix well. Add milk and blend well. Pour into prepared pan.

Prepare Brown Sugar Topping. Gently pour over top of cake mixture, without stirring! Bake 30 to 40 minutes, until cake springs back when lightly touched in center.

Cool in pan 15 minutes before serving.

Quick Pancakes

Ingredients:
2 cups All Purpose Baking Mix
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup (8 oz.) milk
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 eggs

Process:
Stir ingredients until blended. Using a small sized ladle (or a 1/4 cup measure), pour a ladle full onto a hot (buttered) skillet or griddle. Cook until edges are dry and bubbles begin to form on top and just begin to pop. Turn and cook just until golden brown.

Zucchini Fritters

Ingredients:
1/3 cup All Purpose Baking Mix
1/4 cup grated cheese (Parmesan, cheddar, jalapeno, whatever you like)
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 eggs
2 Tablespoons milk
2 cups (16 oz.) shredded zucchini (actually, any veggie can be used; especially if it can be shredded or julienned)
2 Tablespoons melted butter

Process:
Mix together All Purpose Baking Mix, pepper and cheese. In another bowl, break and beat the eggs, then mix into the milk mixture. Add All Purpose Baking Mix and cheese mixture to the egg mixture, and mix very well. Fold in your zucchini (or other veggie), and the melted butter. Drop by tablespoons into deep hot fat (deep enough for the fritters to float). Fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towel, add additional seasonings of your choice immediately upon pulling from the fat (again, I like sea salt and fresh ground pepper, maybe even some red pepper flakes).

Corn Dogs

Ingredients:

1 cup (8 oz.) All Purpose Baking Mix
2 Tablespoons yellow cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt (I use sea salt)
1 egg
1/3 cup milk

Process:
Mix all ingredients togehter well to make a batter. Insert sticks (I use kebob sticks broken down to size - soak them in water first!) into one end of each hot dog (or weiner - or I'm thinking tofu can even be used for a vegetarian version). Dip into batter to coat fully, then fry 3 minutes in hot fat. Makes enough batter to cover about 1 pount of hot dogs.

May 27, 2007

All Purpose Baking Mix (Like Bisquick)-Quantity Batch

"One of my very first posts here to Blogger World Cooking, if you'll recall, was EC's Apple Cobbler In it I referenced "Bisquick", which is a commercially made all-purpose baking mix. It has since dawned on me that Bisquick likely isn't available everywhere (patience, my friends, I'm a slow learner and it takes awhile for things to sink in!) Well, I have my own recipe to make a very similar product as a storable mix (below) -- but I'm not too sure if it is any more helpful as it calls for dry powdered milk - which also might not be available everywhere! In the hopes that you can use it in your area, however, I offer this all-purpose baking mix recipe. It can make a wide variety of things for you, some of which I've listed after the recipe and (over time) I hope to add those recipes here to BWC also! Enjoy!" .... EC



EC's All Purpose Baking Mix

Ingredients
8-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
4 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1-1/2 cups instant dry milk, or dry buttermilk powder
2-1/4 cups vegetable shortening (a solid fat, not liquid, is best since this is a dry mix that you store and use over time; however, I have heard of folks substituting regular vegetable oil with success, altho I've not tried this myself).

Slightly Healthier Alternative:
Use 4-1/4 cups all-purpose flour + 4-1/4 cups whole-wheat flour.
Increase baking powder to 5 tablespoons.

In a very large bowl, sift together all the dry ingredients one by one, and then blend everything very, very well. With a heavy-duty mixer, or by hand with pastry blenders or forks, cut in shortening until the mixture resembles a cornmeal texture, or until you can see that all the shortening has been broken down into tiny pea size or smaller and is thoroughly coated in the dry mix and is thoroughly and evenly distributed. Nothing wet should be evident at all.

Put in an airtight container, and label with the date: this mix if properly stored will keep for up to 12 weeks. It will make about 13 cups of mix.

What commercial powdered milk might look like in your area:



Recipes that can be made with this mix:
(I'll try to remember to add live links, as I add the recipes!)
And so much more!

May 14, 2007

Asteroids

"Another recipe possibility from All Purpose Baking Mix ... Actually, this recipe is not mine. A very long time ago I copied it from somewhere -- and I've been using it ever since -- but I can't for the life of me remember where I got it from! Anyway, enjoy!" ... EC


Asteroids


Ingredients
-- 1 pound of your favorite, seasoned, ground sausage or ground meat - crumbled, browned, drained slightly & cooled (you can add a bit of chopped onion during the browning process if you like - I usually do!)
-- 1 pound of grated cheddar cheese (either mild or sharp, to your preference. I've even spiced it up a bit by using Pepper Jack cheese instead, or adding some grated or finely chopped jalapeno!)
-- 1 cup of All Purpose Baking Mix
-- 1/4 cup milk (more if too dry, but add sparingly and start with 1/4 cup first)
-- 1 egg. This is optional, for those who prefer to work with some sort of binder.

Process

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, mix everything together very well. Then roll dough with your hands into 1 inch sized balls. Rolling these as loosely as possible helps to keep them moister. Place them in lightly greased mini-muffin tins, or simply place on baking sheet with room between each.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until nicely golden brown. Best served warm, and can be served with a dipping sauce such as bar-b-que sauce or ketchup, etc.

But these can also be eaten later as a snack (if they last that long!) like this: crumble desired number of Asteroids into a glass or bowl, add milk to cover (milk can be warm or cold), enjoy with a spoon or fork! As a youngster (many moons ago!) I used to do this with cornbread all the time - wow, what a treat! It's a favorite Southern States (USA) thing to do!

May 12, 2007

Biscuits - Biscuits and Gravy

"These biscuits are one of the recipes made from my All Purpose Baking Mix When you combine these fresh-baked biscuits with Sausage Gravy (recipe also below), you have a wonderful comfort meal in itself! But for really hearty appetites, Biscuits and Gravy can also be combined with eggs (made your favorite way) for breakfast, or with a tossed salad for a dinner entree. Any way you have it, you can not be worried about either calories or cholesterol -- this is not a dish for the faint of heart (no pun intended!)

At the end of this post are a few photos of what the finished biscuits should look like, as well as what a true helping of biscuits and gravy looks like! Enjoy!" ... EC

Biscuits
Ingredients
3 cups All Purpose Baking Mix
2/3 cup of milk

Preheat over to 450 F. (230 C.). Combine All Purpose Mix and milk in a medium bowl and blend till just mixed well. Let dough stand (rest) about 5 minutes.

On a lightly floured board, knead dough about 15 times. Roll out to 1/2-inch thickness (do not roll thin - you want the product to be big and fluffy!). Cut with a floured biscuit cutter or, if you don't have this, you can use anything circular with about a 2-3" diameter (for example, drinking glass or small serving bowl). Make your cut outs close together, without actually cutting into each other, so as to not waste dough. You can re-roll the leftover dough to use again if you like, but beware that this "second" batch might be just a bit less fluffy and soft than the first because of all the handling.

Place the cutout biscuits (pronounced "bis-kets") about 2 inches apart on an un-greased baking sheet, and bake about 10 to 12 minutes - until a nice golden brown (not too light, not too dark).

This recipe should make about 12 large biscuits.

Country Sausage Gravy

This is also known as Sawmill Gravy, just Country Gravy, or just Sausage Gravy. I've offered two different versions, based on whether you like spice/heat, or not. The one with out the spice/heat is the traditional version. Either version is awesome!

Basic Ingredients to Both Versions

1 pound of ground pork sausage (I think it's best not to use a sweet sausage, but I leave this to your discretion!)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2-3 cups milk (start with 2 cups, then add more based on how thick you like your gravy. We like very, very thick gravy!)
2 Tablespoons prepared, strong, black coffee
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (this is optional, but it does add wonderful flavor and depth!)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 1 full teaspoon fresh ground pepper (it's the pepper that makes this dish, so the more the better!)

Additional Ingredients for a Spicier and/or Hotter Version
(add whatever you like from the following)
Hot pepper flakes, or hot sauce - to taste
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg; otherwise up to 1/2 teaspoon
1/2 to 1 full Tablespoon steak sauce

Brown the sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat; remove from the pan. Stir flour into the pan juices (you can add up to 3 Tablespoons more bacon grease OR lard OR shortening, depending on your tastes if you like, but I don't usually have to do this; this is usually only necessary if you used really lean ground pork sausage). Stir constantly, until golden brown. Gradually, but steadily, add the milk to the pan - and cook until the mixture begins to simmer. Then add the sausage back in, along with the coffee, Worcestershire sauce (if desired), salt, pepper - and any other spices you are using. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the gravy thickens. Serve gravy over split open (or broken up) biscuits.

My husband and son eat this on plates, and always end up regretting it because it is so messy! I break my biscuits up into a big (and I do mean big!) bowl and then just cover everything with a very generous ladle full (or 2!) of gravy. Enjoy!

What biscuits should look like...



A typical serving of Biscuits and Gravy...



And for the really brave at heart (again with the puns!) - the following is an example of a good ol' Southern breakfast: a huge ham steak, over-sized biscuits with gravy served on the side (in the bowl on the platter; it is served "on the side" because some like to smother the ham steak in the gravy, while others do not), a side of grits (the smaller plate on the platter) and fried eggs! I have been known to eat like this, but when I do this is usually all I eat that day! Also, since I'm not a big fan of ham, I usually substitute a huge, thick, grilled steak. The gravy is also awesome served over fried chicken, or a baked potato, or rice, or .... well, just about anything!!

May 7, 2007

EC's Southwest Chicken Stew

"It's a family joke that I just can't follow a recipe -- in fact more often than not I simply start throwing things together as the impulses occur to me! These have become known as "Mom's Experiments"! Sometimes they are winners ... and sometimes only the garbage can eats well that night!!

This 'Southwest Chicken Stew' (so named by my son) is one of the big hits! It's so yummy I had to share my recipe, such as it is. But true to form, I couldn't even follow my own original recipe!! Originally I slow cooked everything together for a long, long time (usually overnight), and then pulled out the chicken pieces to pull or shred the meat and re-add it to the stew. In my latest version, I stew the chicken alone, in either a pot on the stove or in a slow cooker (if slow cooker, 8 hours on low usually does it - I do this while I'm at work). Then I debone and shred the chicken (shredding or "pulling" meat is a technique of using two forks, going in opposite directions), and then (finally) I add everything else together and slow cook it long enough to heat everything through.

If you prefer a vegetarian version, simply omit the meat and use vegetable broth or water."





Ingredients
8-12 pieces of chicken
(whatever cut you like; amount depends on how much chicken you like, we like tons!)
1 reg. sz. can black beans, drained
1 reg. sz. cans enchilada sauce
2 reg. sz. can diced tomatoes (plain or flavored), not drained
1 small can finely diced, mild green chilies
(straight from the can is never chopped fine enough for my taste so I always dice even finer, or put through a processor or chopper; otherwise tiny bits can remain tough, even after slow cooking. Drain if you don't like any heat at all, leave undrained for the extra zing)
1 reg. sz. can creamed corn
(2 cans if you really like corn; regular canned kernel corn can be used, but be sure to drain first)
1 reg. sz. can of cheese soup
(for instance, Campbell's Nacho Cheese Soup)
1 small can mushrooms, not drained
(or fresh mushrooms, if you prefer and have on hand)
1 whole onion, diced fine
(can substitute dried onion flakes, if you like)
2 small garlic cloves, minced very fine or put through a garlic press
Have some stock or water on hand, just in case it all gets too thick
Your favorite kind of pasta, or rice, or this is even good as a baked potato topper

Process
Layer the chicken in either a stew pot or slow cooker, add a bit of salt between layers. If you want to flavor your chicken, go ahead and add the usual rough chopped/chunked stewing vegetables such as onions, celery, carrots, leftover vegetable stems (such as broccoli, cauliflower cores, etc.) - whatever you have on hand, or whatever suits your tastes. Then add enough water to cover.

If stewing on the stove, bring up to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer about 4-5 hours (until pink is gone and chicken either pulls away from the bone easily, or simply falls off the bone of its own accord!).

If cooking in a slow cooker, start on high for about an hour then turn down to low and slow cook much, much longer - usually overnight or 10-12 hours.

With either method (stew pot or slow cooker), the longer simmering time is especially important if you start with frozen chicken - you want to make certain the chicken is cooked all the way through, no pink is left, and all bacteria has been killed.

When the stewing/slow cooking is done - pull out all the meat, but discard all the water/broth and vegetables. Next, debone the chicken (e.g., remove all bones and cartilage). Then, using two forks positioned back to back begin"pulling" or shredding all the meat. You can also shred with your hands, but be sure to shred - and not simply chunk - the meat.

Here are photos of the pulling process and what the finished product should look like:


Next, mix all remaining ingredients in a large bowl, just to get everything thoroughly mixed and blended. Then mix in the pulled chicken, mixing thoroughly to coat all chicken with the stew. Once again, place everything in either a stew pot or slow cooker, and simmer just long enough to heat everything through evenly. Stir every now and again to keep from sticking. If it appears to be getting too thick, simply add more stock or water.

While the Stew is heating through, prepare your pasta or whatever you've chosen. When everything is done, for individual servings and preferences, simply spoon desired amount of stew over desired amount of pasta and enjoy!!