Feel like Designing New Type of Cutlet…

Friday, the day my wheels always seem to start turning. I cannot sit in the same place, my mind resembles a deep abyss.  I myself keep falling into this black hole, trying to fill the void, designing new types of foods, being creative.

This Friday a small idea crawled into my head and, I have to say, my heart as well…Little did I know that this meal will turn into a feast for my stomach. Its not that I suddenly had an urge to become a vegeterian, I was simply willing to create something new, just like that, out of the blue.

I looked at what appears to be lying quite nicely in my kitchen – what caught my eye were the vegetables, the grand variety of them…I asked myself, what can I make? Afterall, I had the mightiest vegetable of all looking at me – brocolli!

What came up was THE RECIPE of all time! New type of cutlets made from brocolli, parsley, dill, mushrooms etc

Ingredients:

4-5 mushrooms, 1 kg of brocolli, parsley, dill, feta cheese, 2 eggs, 1/2 cups of flour, salt, pepper.

The Works:

1. Its time to start using your microwave. What I did is I put all the brocolli required into a microwave safe bowl, covered it with a lid, and let it run for its life! For about 10-15 minutes what appeared to be happening is the greatest party I have ever seen, the water (which I poured into the bowl) was dancing heavily together with the brocolli. Afterwards, when everything seemed to be ending, I had one perfectly cooked brocolli. No time wasted with less dishes to wash…

2.  Actually, this step you can perform while you prepare your brocolli. Chop, dice and slice the vegetables you have into a separate bowl. Mix together.

3. Slice cooked brocolli, add into the mix.

4. Add  eggs and flour, salt and pepper. Get powered, mix again.

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5. Look at what you got! Beautiful! Now, all that is left to do is put a frying pan on a high flame, pour in some oil, form little balls and fry them giving it all you have.

You are done! Congrats!

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Chicken Breast in Marinade with Cheese, A Dream Come True

You probably figured it out already…For the past several weeks, I’ve been craving chicken and everything there is to do with chicken. Yesterday, I’ve browsed the depths of the Internet in order to find the best marinade there is. I am absolutely positive about the existence of such a recipe. And of course, I’ve achieved the best result possible – I have found, the tastiest one yet! After you marinade, you have several options – either to make it on a grill or in the oven. My choice fell upon the latter. But, knowing myself pretty well, I could not leave it just sitting in the oven without any perks added to it. I wanted for this recipe to evolve, to take in some new colors, to look different and become even more delightful. What is the fastest way to improve a recipe? If you ask me, my advice is to cover your dish in cheese. I am a cheese nut! Actually, this whole past week I have been eating nothing but macaroni and cheese! And I cannot get enough of it. Oh, and of course my favorite, avocado with a little bit of extra virgin olive oil and salt. What I admire about avocado is that after finishing the meal, your stomach does not feel  overwhelmed, even when you absolutely have to eat past 6 pm…. You see, I am so devoured by avocado, I even forgot I am writing about something totally different….So, enough about avocado. Cheese. The best thing about cheese is you can take any kind and melt it, your supper will be good anyway. So, lets dive together in this never ending world of cheese, chicken and the time saving marinade. Gratitude to the one who came up with the idea to marinade chicken using these specific ingredients!

Ingredients:

2 kg chicken breast, 5 table spoons of honey, 2.5 tea spoons of paprika, a handful of fresh basil cut nicely, 4 table spoons of olive oil, juice from one lemon, 7 cloves of garlic, black pepper.

The Works:

A 4 step cooking process, and yes, I am telling the truth here….

1. Slice the chicken into medium cubes.

2. Chop the basil and the garlic, mix all the ingredients together with the chicken which you should have put into a bowl or a saucepan by now.

3. Mix everything together well. My advice is to use your hands, that way you’ll get to a better result.

4. Close your bowl with a lid. Put into the fridge for at least a couple of hours. Before covering it with cheese and sending it off into the oven (25-30 minutes), make sure you put in salt.

Quick and easy steps, no time wasted! I personally called this recipe: NO TIME TO WASTE FOR A GREAT TASTE!

Enjoy!

And, the mighty process….

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Something New: Buckwheat and Chicken Hearts Recipe…

Today I went bananza…The urge was for something new, a dish I have never tried before in my life. I think it comes from my desire for creativity…but, who knows…

I remembered that there was a book given to me on this New Years by my boyfriend’s mom. I found it pretty quickly and began wondering what to prepare for dinner. Everything looked so delicious and quite easy to make. One particular recipe caught my eye, Buckwheat and Chicken Hearts. Must be honest with you, I am not such a fan of Chicken Hearts, but there is always a first time for everything. I even thought to design my own variation of this recipe, I searched over the almighty Internet in order to stumble upon a better course of action to withstand. On the other hand, there was no need.

I began reading. Simplicity has always been one of my best friends. I glanced over the recipe once more and made a decision. Today will be  Buckwheat and Chicken Hearts Day. No hesitation, no uncertainty! Plus, since my boyfriend seems to somewhat complain a little about me escaping to cook  meals from all those culinary books sitting on my shelf, I have decided to surrender this time.

Although this recipe is supposed to be assembled and prepared in a pot and thrown gracefully into the oven, I have thought of a new manner for its preparation. I have used a saucepan instead. The decision has materialized from quite simple of a reality: I don’t have a pot. (*This one will be on my Santa list next year) It just may be that making this meal in a pot would spin its taste, turn it into a juicy and refreshing delight, but it just means I would have room for improvement next time.

So, without any further adieu, I am proudly presenting BuckWheat and Chicken Hearts to you.

Ingredients:

Buckwheat 2 cups, chicken hearts – 500 gr, red and yellow peppers 3.5, onion – 1.5, garlic – 3 medium cloves, mushrooms -about 150 gr, chicken stock – 1 cup, butter 50 gr, celery – 2 sticks, salt, pepper.

The Works:

Chicken Hearts in Buckwheat

Chicken Hearts in Buckwheat

My advice: prepare chicken stock before you actually start cooking the dish. I just poured small amount of water into a smaller saucepan, boiled it and added chicken broth cubes to make it faster. Let it sit for a bit, then start chopping and slicing the vegetables. Chop the onion into cubes, slice peppers and garlic. Don’t forget about mushrooms, these guys also require some attention from your side! While chopping, get your buckwheat out. Prepare it separately from all other components. You can use THE SAUCEPAN you will use for your further cooking. Since you have a lot of matters happening in your kitchen, why not start working on chicken hearts as well? Fry them separately also in a frying pan with a little bit of oil. Done with that? Perfect! Throw celery and onion together into the oil you have left from the chicken hearts. Fry. After come the peppers and the mushrooms, fry them as well. * By the way, buckwheat should be all done by that time, chilling somewhere in your kitchen in a saucepan, which makes you free to throw all the cooked vegetables into it, once they are done. From my own experience, buckwheat should not take a lot of time cooking, about 16 minutes. I always time myself.

Mix all the vegetables and the chicken hearts with the buckwheat. After comes the interesting part, pour in a cup of chicken broth and add some butter. Mix and let it sit for about 5 minutes. The last step afterwards would be to put it on your stove, very small fire, for another 5-7 minutes. Ready to serve!

The Book that Made It All Possible

The Book that Made It All Possible

Congrats!!! You are the Champion!

Feedback: The reality is, it comes straight with garnish, so you don’t have to spend more time thinking about a good partner for what you have already prepared!

Fast, Simple Chicken in the oven

Just when it seems you have trouble figuring out what to prepare for dinner so that your loved ones would smile and their stomachs say big thanks to THE COOK of the house, think about chicken. It might be the simplest idea for you. I counted the time it took for me to get it all done – about 15 minutes for sauce and about 30 minutes in the oven. The latter does not really count because when it is already in the oven, you still have your freedom to do anything you desire.

Actually, this recipe not only frees you in terms of time, it makes your eyes wonder. I am emphasizing on the colors of this recipe. You got it all: Red, purple, even black…It really does surprise you. So we’ve established with the shades intensity, but just wait for this recipe’s ingredients. Since my first encounter with this recipe I have formed a very firm conclusion that the founder of this spellbinding cooking chemistry must possess a gift of high passion for creativity. And, if you are like me, you will discover it on the same level, if not more.

What I am talking about here is apricot jam as an ingredient. Of course, this is an element of surprise! Just think, how can you mix salty, spicy, and sweet components all together?! For me, it was an eye-opener. The thing is, it does not interfere with the taste. Quite on the contrary, it enhances it, transforms and revolutionizes it, reinforcing your appetite,  turning it into something you just are so eager and for and crave to try. Just wait and see, I am assured, it will be the same for you!

Ingredients:

1.5 kg of chicken, 5 cloves of garlic, 4 table spoons of ketchup, some Tabasco sauce, 1 cup of soy sauce, 4 table spoons of sweet chili sauce and 1 cup of apricot jam

The Works:

My Dear readers, to make it easier for you to follow my recipes, I have come to a conclusion to make some twists and innovations and put numbers prior to any action done in the recipe. Enjoy!

1. Get a baking form and put all of your chicken into it.

2. Preheat the oven up to 200 degrees C.

3. For the sauce: Take a small saucepan, mix in it all the components including diced garlic, ketchup, Tabasco, soy, sweet chili sauce, and the jam.

4. Put the mixture on the stove and stir for several minutes until the jam melts.

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Just like that!

Just like that!

5. Pour the sauce over the chicken.

Chicken covered in sauce

Chicken covered in sauce

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Put the dish in the oven for 30 minutes.

Look you have prepared it all yourself, ENJOY!

PS: Any garnish will do.

 

Soooo, Almonds and Condensed Milk do make a Pie…What a Time Saver!

Almonds Pie. Where to start? I am a sweet tooth, some say this condition is never-ending. For the last couple of days I had a craving for sweets. Not just any sweets – CONDENSED MILK! Of course there is a myriad of recipes and pies containing this food of the gods. My eyes somewhat concentrated more on pies.

As a companion to my condensed milk pie adventure I chose almonds. It is the simplest nut you can get, and frankly, the cheapest. But, the good news is the pie turns out to be of the same quality as if it was made from hazelnuts. What you get in the end is a world full of sweet, chewy texture with almonds peeking out.

Wanna try? Really, nothing too complicated. All it takes is maybe 10 minutes to prepare and 20 minutes to bake in the oven. Simple time saver.

Ingredients

For the dough: 1 table spoon of sugar, 2 eggs, 150 gr butter, 1.5-2 cups of flour.

The filling: 1 jar of condensed milk, 250 gr of almonds.

And you are ready to get to work!

The Works

Mix up all the ingredients for the dough. Once done, put all you’ve created with your own hands into a baking form (with high edges), try to make an effort to design high edges for your dough as well. All this is done using your fingers, so don’t be afraid to get dirty! The edges of your dough should get up to 2-3 cm in height.

Done? Nice. Now concentrate on the filling. Now, this one will be done in a matter of seconds, ready? Spread all the almonds evenly on the dough in the form. Proudly open your jar of condensed milk and pour it over the nuts. Again, disperse it evenly over the almonds. Preheat the oven up to 180 degrees C. Put your creation in the oven and wait patiently for about 25 minutes.

Stand up high, you’ve made a Pie! Enjoy a good cup of tea!

Dive into a bowl of rice – Get some Pilaf

I have never been able to cook rice properly until I got this pilaf recipe into my hands. Rice is a tricky business. When it comes to it, you have to turn into an almost professional chef and make sure the rice you get is not sticky, that you can engage into a dialogue with every little grain. Don’t you just hate when after a hard hour of work, all you’ve established for yourself is that your rice has curved up into a snowball like figures, and all you see are circles that definitely deviate from the norm? That is precisely how I felt when I first started cooking rice. I inspected every angle of it, and just when it seemed I couldn’t resolve the problem, I found this collection of magic words –  a pilaf recipe.

My never-ending gratitude to this genius who invented this one. After working on a whole 2 kg of pilaf, I got a smile on my face. Finally! I won’t keep you waiting any longer, here is the recipe.

Ingredients:

2.5 cups of rice (long), 2 medium carrots, 2 medium onions, about 1.5 kg of meat (beef is better), 4 cloves of garlic, any spices you find fit, good old-fashioned salt.

The Works:

My suggestion is to start with the rice. Get your 2.5 cups and put them in a bowl of cold water (this supposed to get all the stickiness out afterwards). Done with that? Amazing! Now, step two, get your hands ready to chop some meat up. You can do it any way you want, really. The meat can twist into any form. (During this time I actually happen to love geometry. This is what”s so unexpected about cooking: you get all the disciplines integrating one into another. Think about it: geometry, algebra, chemistry and all the others) If you so desire, you can go all Chinese and slice it into long bands, but I prefer cubes. Once you’ve accomplished your goals, get these pieces of meat into a deep frying pan. Fry for about 10-15 minutes, till golden color begins to appear.

My advice is to start multitasking, while your meat gets a tan, prepare for another short workout, and launch an onion dicing and carrot slicing campaign. I do not like to slice them all into tiny pieces, I design them so they are actually visible in the meal. You are your own boss, so you can do as you please=)

Fewf, now you can move on. Go ahead and insinuate all the ingredients into what you got going there in the frying pan. Initiate the takeoff with the onion, wait for about 10 minutes, mixing from time to time, and then, let carrots join. Mix together again, and wait. After, you can spice it all up and add a teaspoon of salt. Don’t forget to mix.

We are almost done. Remember the rice? Drain the water. Combine it together with all the others, even it out in the frying pan with a spoon, then comes the trick. Pour in some boiling water, but this is where your precision should shine through. Unify all your math skills together, and pour X 2 cups of boiling water in. (2.5 cups of rice X 2 is? 5) 5 cups of boiling water. You’ll get about 18 mm of water above the rice. Sprinkle a teaspoon of salt over this water, stir. Cover the frying pan with a lid, wait until all the water evaporates. Stir all the ingredients together again.

Well done and Good Job! Dive in and Eat!

 

Wanna know why an apple is a fruit worth to try? The most simple apple pie you’ll know

How many of you look at an apple and see a delight? An apple is a fruit, but what kind, really? Actually, you can do so much with it. There are cobblers, apple pies, apple cider, apples in sugar, apples mixed with carrots (very healthy, by the way), apples in salads (some of us add apples in potato salad – a very well known Russian trick)

I remember the good old times, when I used to grab my father by the hand, and we would run to the backyard to pick some of the apples off the ground. Afterwards, my grandma would make a nice jar of jam out of it.

Let it all not be forgotten. Let us recall this taste, the one that makes your sugar go nuts, and your eyes widen. I heard someone say once that there are 3 things that bring significance to human evolution: an Adam’s apple, a Newton’s apple, and Steve Job’s apple. Let’s add a regular apple to that list. You’ll see what can be made of it just in one second. The simplest you’ll ever get because pretty much all the ingredients are the same in quantity.

Should I mention, this apple pie has no eggs in it!

Ingredients:

Flour 200 gr, semolina 200 gr, sugar 200 gr, apples 450 gr,  baking powder – 1 teaspoon, butter 200 gr, cinnamon 2 teaspoons.

The Works:

The hardest thing that maybe in this recipe is to ground the apples. Not going to open up a discussion, this one might take some time. Otherwise, the recipe looks pretty quick for me. After you do all the grounding, it is time to turn to semolina, flour, baking powder and sugar. Mix all those guys together. Once done with that, take a baking dish, put some butter on it, spread out some of the dry mixture evenly over it. Remember how to work with layers? Put a layer of apples on what you have created on the baking dish. Then again, put some of the dry mixture over it. Do it until you have no space left on the dish.

In this recipe there is no usual place for the butter. The butter goes on top once you’ve finished working with all the layers. Butter should be grounded and cover your creation almost completely. Put your baby in the over for about 20-25 minutes. Wait for it to get some tan, and voila!

Enjoy!

You can get this recipe and pictures at (in Russian): https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.576511749097734.1073742064.345315672217344&type=1

Say big thanks to the baker – Ekaterina Dorohova

Step one

Step one

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Step four

 

Step six

Step five

Step two

Step two

How much is the Fish? A rewarding pie for your eyes

After a very heavy month, my blog returns to its full capacity, slowly but surely.

Have you ever had your mood change so quickly when you look at colorful food? I did.What do you see when you look at this pie?

I must say, the very first time I’ve layed my eyes on this one, I automatically got hungry for some salmon. Somehow I went from a tired person to a very happy one. Maybe, just maybe it is the color of the salmon. I am one of those people who can wake up and shout from the bottom of their hearts: “I want sashimi!” I am that in love with this fish. But, dear readers, today I want to share with you something else you can create using this magical piece of food. This one is a little bit hard to make, just because you have to wait for the dough to get in the mood, so to speak. But, otherwise, it is a very rewarding pie for your eyes. I let you in to a little secret, I just found this one on the Internet, haven’t prepared it yet, but truly want to. I found this one would be helpful when you have a lot of guests over and you want to surprise them with something special.

I am sure this one gets your appetite going as well. And I am sure it does bring an unforgettable party to your tastebuds. On that note, I will not keep you waiting any longer, I give you THE RECIPE. When you are reading this though, don’t forget to look at the pictures.

Personal note: Even if you are the one who thinks food does not seem to look very well on photographs, this one makes you change your mind.

This beautiful story starts when you get these ingredients:

500 gr dough. How do I prepare this dough, you ask me? The ingredients for the dough are: preheated milk (till 30 degrees) – 100 ml, yeast – 10 gr, 1 egg, 2 table spoons of sugar, 1 tea spoon of salt, 70 g butter, 370 gr flour.

Of course, how can you send this one over to your tummy without any stuffing? So, here comes the stuffing:

600 gr of salmon, 120 gr mozarella cheese, 1 medium red pepper, 1 medium tomato, parsley,salt, pepper (according to your own taste)

Sa…Wait for it…Salmon Pie:

Dissolve  yeast in the milk, add sugar, salt, butter, flour and the egg. Get the dough started. Cover it and get it in the fridge for about 3 hours. The volume of the dough should increase after the time has passed. Get the baby out and let it chill out for a while (about an hour) in the regular room temperature.

The next step would be to get it rolling after an hour, about 0.6 cm thick. Now, this is the interesting part, about 3.5 cm from the edge of the circle you, I hope managed to create after you started rolling, you add a little color and put salmon on it all around (which is also cut into bands about 2.5 cm thick) Cover all your magic up with the dough edges (see pictures attached) , don’t forget to close them though. Cut the creation into pieces (again see the pictures), 4 cm thick and turn it over 90 degrees, with the fish looking at you. The fish, the one you  got left, slice again and put it in the middle of the pie.

On top of the fish in the middle, you put tomato cut into pieces, red pepper, add salt, pepper, and get some mozarella going around. Put it into a warm place for 30 minutes. While doing that, preheat the oven up to 180 degrees C. Finally, get your pretty pie into the oven for about 30 minutes as well. Can’t wait for it to be ready? Wait until you get golden color covering it all over. After 20 minutes in the oven, just don’t forget to grease it with egg yolk. * This will help the pie to get an even better tan.

This recipe(and the pictures) was provided to you by: https://www.facebook.com/allrecepts (if any of you here speak Russian as well, this is the place for you)

Ready to put some salmon on the dough?

Ready to put some salmon on the dough?

What  I meant by "Closing the edges of the pie"

What I meant by “Closing the edges of the pie”

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Never play with squash soup, you just might get addicted to it…

After taking a long vacation, fighting with the designs of everyday life, I’ve returned! What’s on the menu today, you ask me? Not so many people actually know what to do when they see squash lying on their table. But, for me, it is a way to prepare  Squash soup enriched with ham, mushrooms, celery and all other vegetables you need to get through your day.

Ingredients:

1 squash, 2 potatoes, 5 medium mushrooms, 4-5 pieces of ham, chicken stock cubes, 2 carrots, 1 medium onion, parsley, celery, and last but not least, garlic cloves (yes, I find it very handy when it comes to winter). Not that many, huh?

The Works:

A soup is not a soup when there is no water in it. So get boiling! Once it comes to a boiling point on the stove, add some chicken stock cubes, just to save ourselves some time. Afterall, you don’t want to turn into a stay at home kitchen, do you? Dice the carrots and the onion, saute a little in a frying pan. *First comes the onion, then you add the carrots. This mixture adds a little bit of color to your soup. And of course, some taste. Garlic and mushrooms, slice them all, saute separately. While frying, do not forget to cut the potatoes, and add them to your stock. Next come all the other ingredients, add gradually. Let the mixture sit on the stove for about 15 minutes (slow fire). At least, while you are waiting for those guys to finish what they started, you can work on the ham and the squash. The ham needs careful care, slice it nicely and fry it a little in a pan, then add it to your soup. Finally, get working on the squash. You do not need to peel it, just make sure you wash it. I took the liberty to slice it into circles, I think it makes it fun to look at the soup. Cut parsley and celery, add all what is left there to add, cover it with parsley, and….YOU ARE DONE!

Feedback: I would definitely use rice next time. It makes this soup even thicker. But of course, it is just an option!

Get acquainted with this one, it will leave you warm on a cold day!

Here comes Pot Roast, with a little secret.

It got real cold here! And when I say “real cold”,  I mean +6, +5 degrees Celsius. It does not seem that cold, but when you start thinking about the insides of your own home, and the temperature there (which can get to +14), and how you sit wearing layers on yourself, all you want is to get warm. One of the best ways for me to dive into a warm world is to cook meat and potatoes. I have to say, this recipe is very filling, with the meat melting in your mouth. But, you have to wait for at least 2.5 hours for it to get ready. If you are one of those people who likes meat having a particularly soft texture, you might have to wait even more. I can tell you, I waited for 3 hours. So, get all the patience you have inside you, and lets get cooking!

*Oh, and a little note, this recipe comes in with a little zest, its got dried prunes in it. This stuff is what gets you surprised. Just remember a day when you tried eating something that you are used to. So you eat, enjoy your food, even if its the usual for you, it still creates fireworks in your mouth. But then, suddenly, you feel like there is something new…Something that makes this dish taste even better. Something that you will remember every time now you think about this specific meal. Not only it adds new taste for the meal, but it actually delights you. In this usual meal you would not expect to come by this ingredient.

Ingredients:

3-4 medium potatoes, 1 kg of beef, half a kilo of chicken breast, 1 big carrot, 2 medium onions, 5-6 tablespoons of tomato sauce (I had sauce for pizza left from the time I prepared homemade pizza, so why let the good stuff go by?),  about 50 gr of dried prunes, garlic, parsley.

The Works:

Slice all your meat into bands, that way the meat will prepare faster. Put it all into a deep frying pan, and let it sit there on the stove, till the juices come out.20131212_095255

Peel of the skin from the potatoes and cut them into cubes. Get working on the carrot, slice it into big round pieces. About the onions, make nice big rings out of them. Mix the onions with the meat, let it sit for about 15 minutes (just do not make big fire on the stove) Remember, the juices still have to be there when you start adding other vegetables in.20131212_103223

Next, comes the carrot. Again, let it soak in all the juices together with the meat for several minutes. Then, start adding the potatoes. You already know what comes next, waiting. But, then comes the fun part, add the sauce you have to mix in a little bit of color in your works. Actually, the red of tomato paste, or in this case, pizza sauce, fits in perfectly with the meat. So, do not be afraid to mix it in! Do not forget to taste your food! If you feel like you need to add more of the sauce, you should positively do so! Afterwards, ladies and gentlemen, comes the bride! Dried prunes! 50 gr is about 7-8 of them, so add them without any hesitation. They are the ones bringing the surprise, remember? They bring a sudden feel of sweet into your dish. Mix it all once again, put the mixture on low fire, close the lid, and…wait…again, it should be close to 3 hours to let the meat be as soft as a baby’s skin. While you are waiting, do not let yourself go crazy, wash and cut the parsley (this one you should add last, when the dish is ready), and peel the skin off the garlic. You can add the garlic after about 1.5 hours. You do not need to slice it, just peel the skin, and throw it in there.

*Important note, when you are waiting for the meat to be ready, check on it once in a while, just open the cover. As we all know since high school, water tends to evaporate. So, do not forget to add some in while waiting those 3 long hours. Plus, it does not let you go bananza! Water should always cover your meat about half way. Otherwise, you’ll burn it all, and you don’t want this one to happen…All your hard work to fly away from you…

And, voalah, after 3 hours you get a beautiful meal that every member of your family can and will enjoy!

Warm up your hearts with a nice Pot Roast!

Feedback: My beloved members actually said that they enjoyed it very much. They haven’t eaten such a dish in a while. The best thing about this dish is, you don’t have to prepare additional garnish for the meat.