Ditalini’s Chiles Rellenos

Ditalini and I recently joined a produce co-op. Every Saturday we pick up two good-sized baskets of seasonal vegetables and fruit. This Saturday we found eight big green chiles mixed in with our haul, and Ditalini decided to make chiles rellenos from scratch. We used to make chiles rellenos using Ortega canned green chiles, but […]


Making Peanut Brittle, Take #1

We made peanut brittle from a Food Network recipe. The idea was for Ditalini to bring some to work, and to make small gift packages of what’s left. We’re not totally happy with the results of the recipe, though, so most if it will stay at home and get gradually consumed here. Too thick, not […]


Crouton’s Shrimp & Chicken Italian Sausage w/Cheese Polenta & Sriracha Sauce

Let me just say, right off the bat, that this was an experiment based on a popular Southern dish, shrimp & cheese grits. Next time I’ll add a green vegetable on the side for color, and perhaps substitute chicken breast meat for the chicken Italian sausage, because the strong fennel taste of […]


Fresh Hatch Chiles

This entry isn’t a recipe, though it’s closely related to one, Crouton’s New Mexico Green Chile Stew. I wanted to share a bit of local color with you, namely the Hatch green chile roasters who set up shop in front of our local Safeway during the season. Here they are with their gas-fired roaster, burning […]



I apologize for the Crouton’s Kitchen blackout yesterday. It was a bandwidth issue. Monday and Tuesday, there was a huge spike in bandwidth usage and all of pwoodford.net went down. I traced the problem to one of my other blogs, where there’s a large downloadable file someone or something was downloading over and over. Not […]


Dry Rubs for Pork Spareribs

Corky’s Style Rub

1 tsp cayenne 3 tbsp kosher salt 3 tbsp course ground pepper 2 tbsp dried thyme 2 tbsp marjoram 6 tbsp cumin 4 tbsp allspice 6 tbsp paprika 2 tbsp garlic powder 4 tsp celery salt 4 tbsp chili powder

Memphis Style Rub

4 tsp paprika 2 tsp salt 2 tsp onion […]


Crouton’s Kitchen To Go!

On a recent trip, I called up Crouton’s Kitchen on my Android. My site, formatted for desktop and laptop monitors, did it’s best to squeeze onto the cell phone’s miniature screen. The text was so tiny I couldn’t read a thing, and I vowed to work up a version for mobile devices as soon as […]


Preserving Lemons

Preserved lemons have many uses, but we primarily use them to prepare two Moroccan recipes: Chicken Tajine (aka Rotten Chicken), and Chicken Tajine w/Harissa, Artichokes, & Grapes.

Ingredients & Equipment

6-12 lemons sea salt or kosher salt 1 qt fruit jar w/lid


Prepare preserved lemons 4 weeks ahead of need.

Cut the ends […]


Dry Rub (Poultry)

First, a caution: I haven’t used this rub recipe yet. A friend sent it to me, and I will use it . . . anyway:

ground expresso cayenne pepper paprika sugar salt pepper

Mix equal parts expresso & cayenne, half as much paprika & sugar, salt & pepper to taste. Rub chicken inside and out.



Dry Rubs for Beef

Dry rub for beef brisket:

This is the basic dry rub I use to coat beef brisket before smoking:

3 parts brown sugar slightly less than 1 part kosher salt 1 part chili powder 1 part pepper 1/3 part garlic powder

I use 1/2 cup as 1 part, so this mixture makes a little more […]