3 Snow-Day Recipes to Help You Weather the Storm
Batten down the hatches — this week’s requisite blizzard is under way.
If you believe the hype, many of us are in for a strange sort of storm — complete with ice, snow, and tornadoes, oh my! — that some meteorologists are suggesting could be one for the records. (Isn’t that always the case lately? Ugh.)
First the bad news: It’s too late to panic and make a mad dash for your nearest supermarket. All the essentials are gone, the lines are nine deep, and you don’t have four-wheel drive. So don’t even try it. (See also: 20 Things to Have on Hand for Power Outages)
Now for the good news. You needn't stock up to make these hot and hearty dishes that hit all the right spots. They’re made from kitchen staples that you already have. Bon Appet-heat!
Breakfast: Sausage and Biscuits
You can spend an hour making buttermilk biscuits from scratch, but I’m of the opinion that Pillsbury makes as good a biscuit as I can. That’s what makes this meal so easy. Just pop open the Grands can, place the contents on a baking sheet, and pop ’em in the oven. They're risen and ready to eat in 20 minutes.
To finish this recipe off, brown one pound of ground sausage in a skillet, stir in a quarter cup of flour — and don’t forget to scrape those tasty brown bits of the bottom of the pan — and gradually stir in two cups of milk (whole milk for maximum flavor) until the gravy is thick and bubbly. Season with salt and pepper to taste and ladle over a set of steaming biscuits. Serve with a side of fresh or thawed mixed berries. (Recipe adapted from Bob Evans.)
Lunch: Steak BL (Minus the T) Sandwich with Basil Mayo
All credit for this sandwich goes to a restaurant I used to frequent near my hometown in Maryland, but it’s easy to duplicate from your fridge.
I use strips of seasoned flank steak or London broil and pile it on a hand-size piece of a whole grain baguette in two rows, crosswise. On top of that I add two strips of bacon, fresh arugula (although any lettuce you have will do), and shaved Parmesan. Before I make it a sandwich, I smear mayo (light, if you’d like) flecked with fresh basil on the top piece of bread. I omit the tomato because they’re slimy and gross, but you can have at it if that’s your sorta thing. Splurge with a few kettle-cooked (or veggie) chips to round it all out. (Recipe adapted from Kitchen Daily.)
Dinner: Chicken Noodle Soup
You can’t go wrong with this crock-pot classic, but I’ve learned a few things along the way. First, store-bought rotisserie chicken is best because not only is the bird super juicy, but the submerged carcass will further flavor the broth. If you don’t have a rotisserie chicken on hand, roast a few bone-in breasts and thighs at home. Remember to keep the skin on for extra flavor. As for the broth, I use six cups of stock with four cups consisting of College Inn traditional chicken stock and two cups of the brand’s new Bold Stock.
Here’s where I get weird: I don’t like vegetables in my soup — it’s a consistency thing – but they’re necessary to give the broth flavor and depth. To avoid having to pick the onions, carrots, and celery out of the final product, I wrap the chopped veggies in cheesecloth, tie it up, and let it float in the stock until it’s ready to serve. If someone prefers the veggies, I add them to that person's individual bowl, and everybody’s happy. Crusty bread, crudité, and a bottle of chardonnay pair perfectly. (Recipe adapted from About's Guide to Southern Food.)