Saturday, August 17, 2013

Super Heros – Kitchen Confessional Style

In the Steele household we have a long tradition of Superman affection. Everyone, from the three month old baby to ManO (get it, Man Of Steel) has a Superman  tee-shirt or two or four.  Don’t ask us to choose our favorite Superman either.  The comic version, George Reeves, Christopher Reeve, Smallville. We have loved them all. Except for the latest guy. They changed his uniform.  Don’t mess with the uniform. Why you say?  I have a shirt that says why! "The chicks dig the uniform."

Of course the kids expanded their superhero love to include the X Men, Wonder Woman, and others. Last weekend was a certain boy’s five year old birthday celebration. He requested everyone come in SUPER HERO costumes or at least a super hero tee shirt. Face it,  superheroes make play time better.  

When it comes to cooking there are certain foods like blueberries, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, spinach and walnuts that make our health better. They've earned the Super Food label because they contain the concentrated antioxidants, omega oils or vitamins our bodies need. Google and you will find varying lists of what is a superfood is and what might be best for certain health conditions or goals. Eat these and your body will thank you.

But then there are other foods that I consider my Kitchen Super Heroes, foods that aren't quite as  healthy. They make dishes special, take them up a notch.  Some of my faves include sprinkles, bacon, cheese, and chocolate. Add any of these and something plain goes fancy.

But my favorite Kitchen Super Hero of the moment is my Super Sauce/Dressing.  I have a base of ingredients I use to create a cold sauce, perfect for meat, seafood or even plain veggie salad.  It turns leftovers into a special meal without heating the kitchen. Depending on what I am serving, I add or subtract ingredients. 

This week, I roasted the last of the season's red peppers at 425 for 20 minutes until they turned black.

Food stylists know better than to put a food item on a clear dish. Sigh.
I took them out of the oven and covered the dish with aluminum foil. They steamed themselves for thirty minutes. I removed the skins and chopped them up. 

I pureed them in an immersion blender and added them to the base. Oh, may I sing a love song about my hand held blender?  Now there is a Super Hero appliance for you. Trust me, it looks plain and small, kind of like Clark Kent. BTW, did you know Clark Kent was named after Clark Gable? But man does it come to the rescue more times than not in my house!

And then I served it over sliced chicken and a bed of lettuce and cherry tomatoes. Luscious.

Super easy and super delicious!
Here is the recipe for making your own Super Sauce base, along with a few suggestions for complimenting different main ingredients.

Super Sauce/Dressing Base:

1/2 cup mayo
1/4 cup olive oil (add more or less if you want a sauce consistency or a dressing)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Super Sauce/Dressing Add-ins:

For seafood:  Add 1 tablespoon Old Bay Seasoning and juice of one half lemon

For beef: Add 1 tablespoon brown mustard, minced onion and a dash Worcestershire sauce

For Thousand Island type dressing: Add 2 T ketchup and minced pickles

For Blue Cheese: Add 1/4 blue cheese crumbles and dash Worcestershire sauce   

For Taco Salad:  Add 1 T salsa seasoning, diced tomatoes or chilis

Blending Instructions:

Blend base ingredients with a whisk, food processor or immersion blender. Add other ingredients and stir. Chill a few hours, best if overnight.  Serve over cold meat or veggies.

So what do you consider YOUR Super Hero or Super food? Do you have a simple addition to any recipe or meal that makes it special?   



  1. Chocolate. That's the superset of super foods. :-) I'm going to make double chocolate cookies today. Blissful sigh. Have to be a good girl at eat my oatmeal first though. I guess oatmeal would be my healthy super food choice. I start every day with it -- even in the summer.

    1. I always put chocolate in my homemade granola. Best camping/hiking combo ever!

  2. These guys around here just want the food, and seem to consume so fast, so I'm afraid I've lost my touch in making things special. I'm not a mayo fan, but if you put other things with it, it could work for me, so I will give this a try!

    I didn't notice the latest Superman's uniform issue, so thanks for pointing it out. I was too busy looking at his face or the one scene when he comes out of the water sans uniform......

    1. Hahaha. Thanks for keeping it real, Piper! Maybe I should revisit the most recent Superguy!

    2. He comes out of the water sans uniform? What have I been missing?

  3. Butter. I'm with Paula Deen. I guess.

    But butter is so healthy (in moderation) and adds SO much flavor. A quarter teaspoon makes magic with a cup of cooked veggies.

    That and chocolate. Although, I think I would consider that a necessity, like water and air.

    1. Love both of those. Together they make hot fudge sauce!

  4. Jan, I'll go with you on butter and chocolate.

    Julie, I adore that Vegetable Superman logo. How cool is that!!

  5. I like the logo too. Now what is up with the supersized photos?

  6. Tina, I hate to sound whiny but when you are on pain meds and trying to do a blog post you forget about shrinking the pics!

  7. Oh, this looks delicious!

    One of my pics was enormous once, and it was when I downloaded something from my phone. Weird. Not sure why. And if you look at Jan's first post...

    Nothing says scary like GIANT PHOTOS OF BRATWURST!!!

  8. You have to scroll to about the middle of the post to get the full effect. *smirkle*

    1. I scrolled down and burned my eyes.

    2. I have pics showing that I deleted!

  9. LOL, Virginia!!!!

    Poor Julie. We love giant photos. Kisssy Kisssy.

  10. Oh, I used to have giant photo problems. Tina solved them. First she fixed them for me... then she said "Ruthy, go in with Chrome. Put them in your computer first. Then upload them."

    No more giant pics.

    Julie, you had me at sprinkles. But superman was nice too, LOL!

    Drex, 1/4 teaspoon of butter isn't a real amount. Nor is 1/4 tablespoon.

    I'm frowning at that measurement, thinking to last night's veggie mix....

    And not measuring, LOL!

    We have an afternoon wedding reception picnic today. So excited! I'm making the peach pie that I posted here last summer, it's the best peach pie recipe I've ever had, and I'm eating as much of it as I want!!!! Forget dinner, it's Sunday and I've been good all week!!!! And I'm doing that amazingly easy cheese danish with the crescent roll top and bottom I posted a few weeks back. A ten minute fix and everyone loves it.... We'll not mention the 1/4 CUP of melted butter sloshed over the top, so important for crescents!!!! :)

    Julie, Lt. Alex STEELE (named for Julie and Man-O) would be proud of you!!!

  11. I saw that peach pie. Amazing. Super even.

    Ahhh, we do love Alex!

  12. Your special sauce sounds yummy! I wonder how jalapeno would taste in it.

  13. How did I not get by here yesterday???!! I got online just to do so. I must've gotten sidetracked.

    So what's new, huh?? :)

    This does sound delicious! I especially like the one for beef. Must try that asap!