Transylvanian Goulash

Transylvanian Goulash
Transylvanian Goulash

This recipe was shared with me by my Mom, Ann Barczay Sloan.


  • Bacon grease
  • 1 lg. yellow onion diced into 3/8″ cubes
  • 1 lg. green bell pepper, de-seeded, cleaned and diced
  • 1-1/2 lb. Pork shoulder cubed
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tsp. caraway seeds
  • 3 bay leaves
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Paprika (My Mom recommends Szeged brand, sweet, not hot.)
  • 2 cans sauerkraut, drained
  • 1/2 cup Sour Cream

Preheat oven to 350. Brown the pork in bacon grease, salt and pepper the meat then add in onions and bell peppers until onions are translucent. Add garlic and stir that until it is cooked. Add paprika to cover/color meat, its an eyeball thing. Truth be told its hard to add too much paprika. Add caraway seeds and bay leaves then add the sauerkraut. Bring to a low boil, cover it and cook for 5 minutes. Move to oven for 40 minutes. 10 minutes before the time is up stir in the sour cream. Serve with boiled potatoes.

Hungarian Stuffed Peppers

The filling portion has actually been pulled OUT of the pepper here.
The filling portion has actually been pulled OUT of the pepper here.

My Mom, Ann Barczay Sloan, shared this recipe with me.


  • 6 bell peppers (green, red, a mix, all OK)
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1-1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 5 tblsp. cooked rice
  • 3 tblsp. tomato sauce added to meat
  • 1 can tomato sauce (minus the 3 tblsp. used above)
  • 2 tsp. sugar (for sauce)
  • 1 tsp. paprika (for sauce)

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the ground beef, pepper, salt, paprika, garlic powder, cooked rice and 3 tblsp. of tomato sauce in a mixing bowl. Cut the tops off of the pepper and clean out seeds and extra veins of white material to maximize the available room for stuffing.

Stuff all of your peppers and place in a baking dish.

In a sauce pan on the stove pour remaining tomato sauce, sugar and paprika and heat until very hot/steaming and then ladle or pour over the peppers carefully so that they are uniformly covered/coated.

About 15 minutes into the 30 minutes cooking time you can open the oven and baste the peppers using the sauce (see photo below) that’s forming around them. Actually you could baste as many times as you’d like and they’ll probably be even more delicious. These are done when the peppers are soft but still hold together.

NOTES: this can be served with boiled potatoes, the sauce goes great with them.


Mediterranean Chicken

Mediterranean Chicken with pine nut cous cous
Mediterranean Chicken with pine nut cous cous

I struggled for a name for this dish and settled on this as the most accurate. It mixes European (Italian, Hungarian) and North African (Tunisian) flavors. It’s easy to make and really reheats well.


  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 10 Chicken thighs
  • One large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, one red, one green, deseeded and sliced longitudinally
  • 1 tbsp. freshly chopped garlic
  • 2 tbsp. white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • one bottle Classico Roasted Garlic tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp. harissa (I found mine at Trader Joe’s. Add more if you want it hotter)
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms

Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. I have a large ceramic coated metal roasting pan that’s shallow. On the stovetop I add the oil oil and then brown the chicken on a low flame because I want to get them nicely cooked before I put them in the oven. After you’ve flipped and browned the 2nd side of the chicken start adding the vegetables, you might boost the flame a little. I go onions, then bell peppers, then garlic, the raisins, then balsamic vinegar, then tomato sauce, then harissa. The mushrooms I stir in right before moving the dish to the oven for 20 – 25 minutes to finish it off.

I served mine with pine nut couscous but it would go great with linguini or other pasta.

Notes: you could easily add more garlic! Tastes even better the next day, reheats well in the microwave.

Mediterranean chicken up close in the pan after coming out of the oven.
Mediterranean chicken up close in the pan after coming out of the oven.


Chipotle Lime Garlic roast chicken ala Mexicana

Chipotle Lime Garlic roast chicken ala Mexicana
Chipotle Lime Garlic roast chicken ala Mexicana

Quick ingredients list:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Juice of 2 small limes
  • 2 tsp. powdered garlic
  • 2 tblsp. Chef Merito Steak and Meat Seasoning (image coming)
  • one whole chicken, washed in warm water and dried with paper towel
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, cut into small pieces
  • 2 tblsp. brown sugar

I like to fill the chicken with warm water and let it sit in there for 30 seconds and I do this twice while washing the chicken in order to try to warm it up to room temperature before cooking.

In a metal bowl I added the oil, Chef Merito Steak and Meat Seasoning, lime juice, garlic and cut up chipotles. This is the marinade that I coat it with.

So I hold the chicken upside down and pour in ALL of the marinade mix to the main body cavity while holding the neck cavity closed and swish it around the inside of the chicken to coat it. Then I pour it out into the bowl and coat the exterior of the chicken, on a vertical roaster, and paint it on with a brush for the first coat.

Cook for 30 minutes at 425 degrees, pull out and do the second coat of marinade, put back in for 15 more minutes but now at 375 degrees. Now take it out again (after the 15 minutes), add 2 tblsp. brown sugar and some of the drippings from the catch pan of the vertical roaster to what remains of the marinade and do the glazing stage for the final 15 minutes.

Next time I’m going to add Mexican oregano and ground cumin. My goal is to match (or surpass!?!) the chicken from El Toro Bravo here in Costa Mesa.

*Here’s another one of my attempts to match the fabulous chicken from El Toro Bravo.

Grandma Race’s Ginger Cookies

These cookies are hard to stop eating once you’ve started. You’ve been warned!

  • 1.5 c butter/shortening
  • 2 c brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c molasses
  • 4.5 c flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cloves
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 2 tsp cinnamon

Roll into balls and roll in sugar. 375 for 10 – 12 min.

Avoid over baking!


contributed by Katie Sloan

Joy’s Chocolate Chip Cookies

350°F   12-15 minutes  10-12 dz.
  • 3 cubes, or 1½ cups butter, or margarine
  • 3 cups dark brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 Tbsp. maple extract
  • 2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 6 cups oats, old fashioned
  • 2 cups white flour
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. soda
  • 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, or 1 large bag
  • 2 cups nuts, pecans and walnuts, in big chunks
Preheat oven. Beat together butter, sugar, eggs, maple and vanilla
until creamy.
Add oats, mix well before adding rest of ingredients. Add flour, salt and soda, mix well. Add chips and nuts. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto cookie sheet. Non-stick cookie sheet, don’t grease.
Can also use greased cookie sheet, or parchment paper.
For variety you can make bars, cook longer. Add raisins, or currants, or butterscotch chips, or chocolate chunks, or coconut, or salted peanuts. All of these variations taste good.

Currant Cookies

Can’t claim this as original, it comes from the Sunmaid site, but I love them just the same!

These buttery-sweet sugar cookies are an old-fashioned treat. Toast the pecans for an extra nutty flavor; add lemon zest for a citrus note.


  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup Sun-Maid Zante Currants
  • 1 cup toasted chopped pecans
  • Zest of one lemon (optional)


PREHEAT oven to 350º F.

BEAT butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs and beat well.

STIR together flour, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. Gradually beat into butter mixture until well blended.

ADD currants, pecans and zest if using. Mix well.

DROP by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart on a lightly buttered or parchment lined baking sheet.

BAKE 12-14 minutes until golden brown on edges. Remove with a spatula to a wire rack to cool.

Makes 3 dozen.

Sweet and Sour Balti Chicken

Balti Chicken
Balti Chicken

This is a great, mildly spicy dish depending upon the close adherence to using LESS chili powder and mild Anaheim chiles. Stray away from this at the risk of your taste buds.

  • 3 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp Greek-style yogurt
  • 1.5 tsp. Garam Masala (a mix your can buy)
  • 1 tsp. chili powder (insane, use ONLY 1/4 tsp.)
  • 1 tsp. garlic pulp
  • 2 tbsp. mango chutney
  • 4 tbsp. oil
  • 1.5 lb. chicken
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 fresh green chilies, chopped (use Anaheims, mild enough to eat)
  • 2 tbsp. cilantro
  • 2 tbsp. light cream (use half and half)

Blend together the tomato puree, yogurt, garam masala, chili powder, garlic, mango chutney, salt in a medium mixing bowl.

Heat oil in a deep round bottomed frying pan (we use American wok, teflon w/ handle)

Add chicken pieces stir until coated; add water to thin the sauce slightly; continue cooking for 5 – 7 minutes or until chicken is tender (don’t overcook, undercook and let heat continue to cook, sauce super-retains heat).

Lower heat slightly and pour spice mix in bring to boil for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally (important to cook/meld flavors here)

Finally add the fresh chilies, cilantro and cream for a further 2 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.

Serve with Basmati rice and naan if you can find it. Trader Joe’s has a great frozen naan that heats in your toaster oven.

El Toro Bravo-style Roast Chicken

this is the chicken with the spice mix brushed on, on our vertical roaster the better to simulate the rotisserie at Toro Bravo

This is my experimental attempt to duplicate the recipe of my favorite Mexican-style roast chicken restaurant El Toro Bravo on 19th Street in Costa Mesa.

Latest ingredient list as of 2.3.13:

  • juice of one medium lemon, seeds removed
  • 2 tsp. ground garlic
  • 1 tsp. ground oregano
  • 2 tsp. pasilla chile powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 3 tsp. Chef Merito Sazonador para Carne
  • 1 tsp. salt

I brushed this on one large chicken and put it in at 350 degrees.

This is the spice paste/sauce that results from mixing all the ingredients.

Completed Chicken

My second attempt. Looking and tasting good. I feel like I need at minimum 3 attempts to get a recipe down.

Daily Grill Turkey Meatloaf – made Healthy by Joy

Preheat Oven to 350° Loaf 1 hour, Mini Loafs 45 minutes 6 Servings

  • ½ cup onion, diced
  • ½ cup celery, diced
  • ½ cup carrots, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 lbs. lean ground turkey, lean ground beef, or ½ turkey & ½ buffalo
  • Organic turkey and beef are preferable, buffalo is always organic.
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup Ezekiel toasted bread crumbs, or Genesis
  • (or 1 cup spinach, chopped, steamed, & drained)
  • 2 Tbsp. tomato puree
  • 1 tsp. Celtic salt
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper, or to taste
  • 3 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • ½ tsp. (1 tsp.) paprika
  • ½ tsp. (2 tsp.) fennel seeds, ground
  • 1 Tbsp. (2 Tbsp.) Worcestershire sauce


  • 2 Tbsp. toasted seseme seeds, ground
  • 2 Tbsp. flax Seeds, ground

In a coffee grinder, I grind: fennel seeds, seseme seeds, and flax seeds together.

In a large bowl mix vegetables with the meat, and bread crumbs. Add everything together: Best mixed together in blender: eggs, tomato puree, salt, pepper, mustard, paprika, fennel, (other seeds if adding),

Worcestershire sauce. I put on gloves and mix it by hand, much easier to get a good mixture than with a spoon.

Pack into an 8”-9” Loaf pan, or 3-4 mini loaf pans. Great for putting into freezer for future meals.

Serve with tomato sauce, or organic pasta sauce, heated.

6 servings, each contain about: 300 calories, or less, 10 gm. fat,12 gm. carbohydrate, 36 gm. protein, 2 gm. fiber.