THE CAPTAIN'S CORNER

COOKING WITH THE CAPTAIN
ArticleID: 199
Date: 1/22/2009 12:29:00 AM
Written By: CaptainJackson

COOKING WITH THE CAPTAIN
by Captain Jackson

During many of the scores of interviews I`ve granted over the years, I have been asked what are some of the activities I enjoy perusing in my "off time". While these include model trains, restoring antiques, videography and photograph, to name but a few, one of my greatest passions has been cooking. And while I`m a basic "meat and potatoes" kind of guy, I have learned how to created a meal which is not only delicious but one which is low in fat. Here are a few of my regulars:

CRIMEFIGHTER CORPS MEATLOAF

Now this is a formula that I got from my mother and improved on. She used 50/50 ground pork and ground sirloin. I seem to have a problem with pork food products so I experimented with different formulas and this seems to be the one that everyone, including myself, loves the most.

Ingredients:
---2 pounds ground chuck
---1 package Lipton Onion Soup (or equivalent)
---1 average sized Green of Red pepper
---1 small white or yellow onion
---2 eggs
---4 ounces finely crushed Corn Flakes
---2 to 4 ounces 2% milk

Preparation:
Dice pepper and onion into small pieces no more than a quarter inch square (this recipe calls for approximately HALF the volume of onion as pepper, so keep that in mind). Using a measuring cup, finely "crush" Corn Flakes by hand until you have four ounces.
Add these ingredients, along with the ground chuck, Onion Soup and eggs in a large mixing bowl. "Squish" and mix by hand, adding small amounts of milk (up to 4 ounces as a binder) until the "loaf" is slightly firm and moist. Place in a 13" x 9" baking or roasting pan and shape into loaf shape. Place in refrigerator, uncovered, to "rest" for at least one hour. This insures that the loaf does not "sag" during baking.

Cooking Instructions:
Preheat oven at 350* F. Place pan on center rake and bake for 1 hour. After that point, turn off heat, open the oven door and allow cooked meatloaf to rest at least fifteen minutes before serving. Wrap unused loaf in Aluminum foil with a piece of paper towel on the bottom and refrigerate.

Re-serving:
While CRIMEFIGHTER MEATLOAF is great served cold on a sandwich, you may also like to re-heat it can serve it as it was when first cooked. Here`s one of the easiest ways:
Cut slice(s) and run under cold water. Hold slice(s) over sink to allow excess water to drain. Microwave on medium to high 45 to 60 seconds (as microwave ovens vary, check this out to find which work best with your unit) and serve.


CRIMEFIGHTER CORPS BURGERS

These burgers are Awesome and just as easy to prepare as the meatloaf.

Ingredients:
---2 pounds ground chuck
---1 package Lipton Onion Soup (or equivalent)
---1 average sized Green of Red pepper
---1 average sized white or yellow onion
---2 eggs
---Italian Salad Dressing
---2 to 4 ounces 2% milk

Preparation:
Dice pepper and onion into small pieces no more than a quarter inch square.
Add these ingredients, along with the ground chuck, Onion Soup and eggs in a large mixing bowl. "Squish" and mix by hand, adding small amounts of milk (up to 4 ounces as a binder) until the "mixture" is slightly firm and moist.
For each third pound pattie you create, add approximately 1 ounce of Italian Salad dressing. Form pattie, wrap in plastic wrap and allow to "rest" at least one hour in refrigerator (and because of the salad dressing, these will still be good days later!).

Cooking Instructions:
Place pattie on fry pan and bring heat up to medium low. Cook until salad dressing begins to "bleed" from burger. Drain excess liquid. Continue cooking, adding about a half ounce of salad dressing to top of burger. Once bottom is cooked, flip burger. Cook until the burger again "bleeds" liquid, drain and return continue cooking until done.
Note: if you are going to add cheese, DO NOT drain liquid from second side. Instead, once cooked, turn burger over again and "rub" in liquid. Add a bit of salad dressing to top of burger, place cheese slice on top, turn burner to HIGH, add a few ounces of water to pan and cover. Within about a minute the cheese will be melted. Remove burger and let rest on paper towel to absorb excess liquid before serving.


CRIMEFIGHTER CORPS BAKED MAC AND CHEESE

Okay, I`m busted here, but who said you can`t use regular products and make improvements? And, yes, this recipe is quite fattening, but I only eat it when I need something delicious, filling and full of energy before a long day of patrol!

Ingredients:
---1 box Kraft Three Cheese Mac and Cheese
---half green pepper
---small white onion
---1 inch thick (or greater) slice Kraft Velvetta cheese

Preparation:
Dice half green pepper and onion into equal amounts.

Cooking Instructions:
Cook noodles as per box instructions. Have way through cooking add green pepper and onion. Slightly OVERCOOK, drain, and add powdered cheese as per box instructions. Add Velvetta cheese and cook on low until cheese is well mixed. Remove from stove and pour into a glass baking dish so Mac and Cheese thickness is around two inches, and let rest in refrigerator at least twenty minutes.
Pre-heat oven at 325* F. Place baking dish on center rake and cook until top becomes slightly brown. Remove from oven and serve.
Note: In the event that the top actually burns, remove from oven, let sit a few minutes, remove "burnt" film with clean pliers and serve. It will still be about the best Baked Mac and Cheese dish you will ever have!


CRIMEFIGHTER CORPS CHILI

Here is another formula from my mother and father. They used regular hamburger and would "cool" it so any excess grease from the burger could be strained from the top. My recipe has non and although it`s ready to eat, it`s still best to let it "rest" in the refrigerator overnight and re-heat on the stove. In fact, a few people who have been entered in the Jackson Citizen Patriot`s annual Chili Cook-Off and even considered presenting it!

Ingredients:
---2 pounds ground chuck
---1 stalk celery
---2 large onions
---2 cans tomato soup
---3 large cans whole (peeled) tomatoes
---3 cans kidney beans (I like to mix both light red and dark red just for color)
---2+/- heaping table spoons chili powder
---1+/- heaping table spoon cumin powder

Preparation:
Slice celery and onions into approximately quarter to half inch square pieces. Open the whole tomato cans, drain the liquid and place it in a container in the refrigerator. In a large mixing bowl, "squish" the whole tomatoes between your fingers until it all becomes "stringy".

Cooking Instructions:
In a large Stainless Steel boiling pot, boil the celery (with only a small amount of water---just enough for the boiling) until slightly tender. At that point, add the onion pieces and continue boiling. Do Not Remove The Water!
Once both are soft, turn the heat down to medium and add the kidney beans, tomato soup and "stringy" whole tomatoes and stir until the mixture is getting close to a boil. At this point stir in the chili powder and cumin powder. Reduce heat and continue stirring.
Fry the ground chuck in a seperate pan (draining any grease as necessary) until well cooked and chop into very fine pieces. Add to the boiling pot when fully cooked.
As the consistency thickens and the overall flavor becomes uniform, occasionally add small amounts of the whole tomato liquid to the mixture. Cook until the flavor seems present in all the ingredients.
Note: If you want a chili which is a little "hotter" you may add both chili and cumin powder as you see fit. However, once the chili "rests", you will find that it will actually become "hotter" than you tasted during cooking---so beware!

This recipe is very filling and can be made with or without a great deal of "heat". However, the best way to make and serve it is to follow the instructions and allow it to rest in the refrigerator overnight. This way all the flavors are incorporated in all the ingredients. And if you would like it even hotter, you can add a bit of chili or cumin powder to your individual serving during re-heating!
Also, this meal is best when heated up in a cooking pan on the stove. For some reason, and I don`t know why, when heated up in a microwave oven it looses something. Please keep that in mind.

Well, there you go, four food recipes I enjoy creating, serving and eating. And if you try them and enjoy my recipes, please drop me a line to tell me what you think.
Anyway, I have a few more that I`ve been working on between public appearances and downtown patrols and will share them with you once I feel I have them perfected.

Copyright 2009 CFC


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