Sunday, October 24, 2010
1 lb ground turkey (not breast--just ground).
2 tablespoons fennel, toasted, slightly crushed.
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp dried oregano, crushed
1 tsp sugar
Mix ingredients together and let sit for one hour for the seasoning to soak into the turkey. Shape into patties (or into link-shaped dudes if you have hot dog buns.)
Heat a nonstick pan over medium high. Melt 2 Tablespoons of butter. Add 1 tbsp of olive oil. Fry for 3-4 minutes on each side.
Serve with sauteed anaheim peppers (2), red bell (1) and onion (1).
Done and done.
Friday, October 15, 2010
The dining room features an eleven course menu that changes each day to reflect the best ingredients available. The menu presents pure flavors combined in surprising ways. The room, featuring the photography of renowned artist Catherine Wagner, juxtaposes earth tones with natural textures and diffused light to create an intimate and engaging environment.
The private dining room provides an opportunity to enjoy the same menu with a small group of 6-8 guests, perfect for meetings or special celebrations.
Tuesday-Saturday 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Saturday, October 9, 2010
Melted chocolate chips, peanut butter and honey mix, layered in muffin cups in freezer. Peanut butter cup delights!
Trader Joes: Autumn harvest mix, quinoa, italian couscous, baby garbonzos in chicken broth.
Pork chops: Salt brined with windowsill thyme. Sear and roast in oven.
Guest chef in the kitchen: Chicken parmesan on cappelini marinara.
Artichokes with butter appetizer with french bread and gouda.
French bread french toast with heated syrup and butter browned apples.
Fall football salsa and guacomole.
Refried bean, rotel and cheese nachos.
Monday, August 16, 2010
Here is a condensed version of the recipe to serve 4 (two skewers each)
4 Sirloin Steaks - chopped into 1 1/2 inch chunks
4 Red Peppers - chopped into 1 1/2 inch chunks remove seeds and rind
4 Peaches - chopped into 8 segments
2 Sweet Onions - Chopped into 8 segments
1 Bunch of Italian Parsley
Pepper (fresh ground black)
Crushed Red Pepper
8 Wooden Skewers *Soak for 20 minutes in water first
Chop all ingredients and place on a tray.
Skewer the meat and vegetables alternating (meat, pepper, peach, onion)
Drizzle olive Oil and season liberally with Salt and Pepper
*It is always best to let meat come to room temperature before grilling to help cook evenly. Also it's best to keep all chunks relatively the same size so cooking time remains the same for each skewer.
Preheat Grill on High for 5 minutes. Grill 5 minutes each side until meat is cooked to at least 130 degrees when measured with a meat thermometer *or when cut into is medium rare (slight pink red center)
Chop the Parsley and mix with the juice of one lemon and stir in 1 Tablespoon Sugar.
Pour vinagrette over the skewers.
Serve with roasted potatoes, couscous, tabouli or a nice greek orzo salad.
Thursday, August 12, 2010
2 8 oz. jars
4 White Peaches, 1 orange sliced with peel, 1 lemon sliced with peel, carrot juice for color. Screw up, boil up, and sweeten up the peaches over med high heat. Best to sweeten 1/2 cup at a time to about 1 1/2 cups. Mine is certainly over sweet. For canning and steaming instructions see "Jam with Gram Goes Well With Shell".
As for the pectin. It is in citrus peels and carrots... so I added citrus peels and carrot juice for the pectin and didn't add SureJel packaged pectin.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
2 yellow squash
Tomatoes on the vine
4 ears of corn
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
These ones Erik brought home from Randall's the butcher. Bone in and an inch and a half thick. I'm wary of thick pork chops. Erik won't eat even pinkish pork and the bone makes them tricky to cook. And like everyone else on the planet, I lament the lack of fat in the meat. So I brined them in a bath of 1.5 tbsp of salt (OK. Not entirely sure. Either 1 tbsp or 2 so I'm splitting the difference. Same with the sugar.) 1.5 tbsp of sugar, garlic powder (a little. I don't believe in powders and yet, so simple, so saturating!) and 1 cup apple juice. Put the brine in a plastic bag (I don't believe in wasting plastic bags but this provides the best full coverage) and let the chops brine for 4 hours, turning every hour or so.
Erik grilled the pork chops slowlyish--350 to 400 degrees for 6 minutes a side. He also sliced broccoli and coated it in olive oil, sprinkling salt and pepper on it and grilling that for a bit. We also grilled peaches.
Probably the best dinner of the summer at our house, knocking out even the carnitas which were good but when you're having a party, do you taste the food?
Unfortunately, you taste the food when it's just you and Zoe and Erik. We made pizza using Alton Brown's 24 hour dough-raising method. The dough was salty and tough to stretch out. We didn't have tomato sauce so I reduced a whole 28 oz can of tomatoes. We used like 1/4 of it and now the rest goes to waste in the fridge. But the worst part? We cooked the pizzas at 500 degrees just like Alton Brown suggested. But he didn't suggest the grill which we thought would be a great idea. It might have been. If we'd turned the burner off.
The first pizza was black all over the bottom. The next pizza, we turned the burner down. The third pizza, we turned the burner off. The first one was so burnt but something about it was delicious. The second one was OK. The third one, the cheese wasn't super melted like I like.
I liked the first one the best, because the crust was the crunchiest and the cheese the meltiest. But it was black. I wrote the whole dinner off as a waste until Erik reminded me that it was just an experiment. We'll try again next time.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
And I'm a firm believer in making fun of girls that order this salad everywhere, with the dressing on the side, and would figure that I would wait til I was with one of those girls before I order it let alone make it for dinner. But it was a summery day and it seemed easy enough. You know me, I'm a Martha girl. No anchovies, no worry.
Chicken breasts marinated in buttermilk, Parmesan cheese, garlic, lemon. Romaine in the salad spinner.
Meanwhile... make the croutons. Brush bread with olive oil with herbs and garlic. Broil for 1 min on first side. Assign timer, wait for the beep, even count down in front of the oven from 30-0. Beep. Perfect. Then flip and wait for the other minute.
(Insert ADD test)
FAIL! Burnt to a crisp by minute 2 second side. Even how many times have I heard the annoying phrase "I always burn the toast! where's the evoo? by the garbage bowl?" by the ever happy 30 minute girl. How can I fail at croutons? Please, please help me with a sure fire no problem just a few minutes perfect crouton.
Salad was fine. The lack of anchovy was noticed.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Here's how you make jam. You read the box of pectin. It has the recipe.
Here's how Shelle and I made apricot jam this week 34 8 oz jars in 4 hours.
Day 1: I went to Harmons. Bought: Sugar, Jars, Pectin ($15.00)
The jars must be washed and sterilized in the dishwasher. The 35 year old push and plug into the sink that still works like a charm began its cycle. Meanwhile, the apricots were "screwed up". I thought I would grab a knife and start cutting them to pit them, silly child, just use your thumb and push them in half and pop out the pit. Screwing up a fruit (ha) means that you put it in the blender. The 35 year old blender that still works like a charm (but you have to kind of shake it to turn it on). My Aunt Shelle was quite the expert but you really need 4 arms for this process to work. So you but the screwed up fruit into the pan. Not any old pan, a really old pan. It can't have any fancy coating or it will taste different. It has to be the 45 year old pan that has lost its handles from making a roast every sunday for 45 years. No handles. Really. So the apricot sludge heats up and you stir in the pectin and the sugar, lemon juice, and a little butter. 7 CUPS of sugar!
Ok OUCH! The apricot lava starts spurtting out of the pan... A full rolling boil of lava for a minute, 60 seconds, with aggressive stirring. Ouch OUch OUCH!!! Then the cruel slop is funnelled into sterilized jars, topped with a lid that has been simmered in water for a while, then screwed lid, then flipped upside down. My job was the lids and the flipping while Shelle did the pouring and funneling and jar getting (4 arms minimum requried). After about 5 minutes, flip the jars upright and listen for the pop. This indicates a tight seal. Now take a break and talk to Shelle about her Racoon chasing escapades with a trapper named Travis and listen to Gram explain what you should do precisely with your left hook, and the tale of her train ride from California to Wyoming with an 18 month old and a 8 month old by herself Then clean the unhandled perfect pan for jam and repeat. This batch we did a little smoother, but it was still evil lava.
DAY 2!!! Harmons again, more jars, more sugar, more pectin. ($11). Now that we were trained and the apricots were already screwed up, Shelle and I worked like riveters and finished two more batches, this time wth 4.5 cups of sugar. We used a longer wooden spoon for the stirring so less injuries and I wore an apron, plus we wiped up spills as we went so the lava wouldn't attach itself to the stove like igneous rock making clean up more intense. Proud as punch, the jars are filled, the racoons still need to be caught, and Val must come to do the plums when the plum tree makes fruit ready to be screwed up!
For one batch
Sterilize 8 jars with lids
6 pints of fruit pitted and finely chopped
Box of pectin (Sure Jell)
4.5 cups sugar
1/8 cup lemon juice
Butter to reduce foaming
Long handled wooden spoon
Non Tefloned pot (with or without handles)
Then, follow the instructions from the box.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Cous cous--In a bowl, I put 1 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp olive oil, and 1 tbsp chopped basil from herb garden. I tossed two cups of cooked cous cous into the bowl where Zoe stirred in 1/2 cup parm. So good.
Roasted cauliflower--I parboiled the cauliflower for two minutes and then into a gratin dish I tossed chopped black olives, feta, olive oil, butter and pepper. I forgot the olive oil but it was still good. Zoe kept asking for more parmasan by which she meant feta. She liked everything except for the cooked peach. Go figure. She loves the peaches raw.
Easyish dinner. Pretty fancy.
Monday, July 12, 2010
I seared the belly and then added (All portions are given in the reasonable amounts):
red wine vinegar
I'm still looking around the house for cumin. Eh. Cumin. Whatever.
If it doesn't braise long enough to make it delicious taco filling, I'll take it to Val's and leave it in her fridge. We'll add more salt and slice it and call it Utah pancetta or, even better, cold smoke it and make Utah bacon.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
3 1/2 cups sliced leeks
3 1/2 cups peeled and sliced potatoes
1 quart water
1 quart chicken stock
salt and pepper
Simmer vegetables in the water for 40-50 minutes. Cool. Blend and strain if desired.
Chill in fridge.
I also braised short ribs in syrah.
1 bottle of Syrah or dry red wine
5 pounds short ribs
3 celery ribs
Brown the short ribs in a huge pot *which I bought on sale at big lots a 7 quart gorgeous one!
Remove the ribs to a plate and Saute the vegetables until tender in 2 tablespoons of reserved fat.
Return meat to pan and pour wine to cover.
Braise in 350 degree oven for 5 hours.
I served it with broccoli and au gratin potatoes.
Keep in mind, I had 10 guests so the portions were small and I think everyone left starving. Oops.
Friday, June 4, 2010
I brined the Opah in honey, salt and juniper berries. In Alinea's cookbook, they say to marinate for 4-5 hours. I thought 2 hours would be sufficient. It was. Then, Alinea wants you to freeze it overnight and slice it into bacon-like strips. That did not happen. Instead, I grilled the Opah like a normal person. The recipe called for 4 or 5 different sauces. I made one orange buerre blanc-y like sauce. It was just fine. Not quite right but I need to work on my sauces anyway.
Then, instead of the fancy sides that involved juniper berries and the accents of peeled juniper berry skins (um, really?) we had broccoli and boiled potatoes. Not very Alinean but still, the broccoli was crisp and the potatoes buttery. For the potatoes, I microwaved butter and sweet onions together for 30 seconds and then tossed the potatoes. Very good. Zoe liked the fish and the onions and the potatoes. Not the sauce. She hates sauce.
Exciting news for today: I'm going to make tortillas!
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
However, the next day, I made pasta salad from a real Vegetarian Magazine Recipe. Blanched broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, yellow squash, carrots and red bells tossed with a lemon vinaigrette and topped with thin, thin slices of ricotta salata and Parmesan. Real veg. And then the next night, I adapted the over-fried chicken recipe for a portobello.
I doused the portobello in a bit of water and then flip-flopped it in cornstarch flavored with cayenne, garlic powder and celery salt (I'm developing a celery salt problem). Shake off extra cornstarch, dip in beaten eggs. Then, carefully dip in bread crumbs (not panko. Could not find panko bread crumbs in Loa).
Bake at 450 degrees for 35 minutes.
I did the same thing to chicken thighs but the mushroom was even more glorious.
To accompany the portobello, mashed potatoes.
And then, I attempted to make the green beans ala the Tinderbox.
I did it wrong. Tossed the blanched beans in miso and then in blue cheese. If I recall, the blue cheese was supposed to be a fondue and you'd dip them into the fondue like fries to ketchup. I suppose I'll have to return to the Tinderbox to try to perfect the recipe. Woe is I.
Everyone else loved the green beans. Even Rick who says he hasn't had a green bean in 40 years. Yay.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
I want to make something easy, celebratory and something that can be eaten past 10.
Is that too much to ask? Also, I don't have a grill!!
I think the reason we are good cooks is because we pay attention. I already know that I can not use cucumbers, watermelon or chicken. And that is just because I tend to pay attention to what people don't like. If you don't like onions - you will have to go somewhere else for dinner.
Risotto - spring risotto
Flank steak - Nikki made this amazing rolled flank steak that I still dream about
Individual Lasagnas? - oh this is a stupid post.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Under the skin of the turkey breast I slid a mixture of very finely chopped (no food processor here) onions, thyme, celery salt (I'm on a big celery salt kick), butter, gray salt (feeling fancy with the salt) and a little garlic powder (feeling lazy with the garlic.)
I cooked the breast at 400 degrees for about an hour. Erik basted it once with butter melted with a bay leaf in it.
Rachel wanted me to make a sauce of apple cider, apple eau de vie (Out. See broke.) Instead, I made a brown roux with chicken broth and a little apple juice and sherry. Too sweet. But OK.
Also. Mashed potatoes were involved. I like to make mashed potatoes with every new recipe on the off chance something goes wrong with the experiment. At least we won't starve. We also had broccoli. Because we always have broccoli.
Monday, May 24, 2010
The green beans were the high point. Here's the menu description: Greenbeans with miso and blue cheese topped with crisp (read, fried) wontons.
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Trout with almonds and haricot verts
Blanching the almonds was a cinch. Never have I felt such accomplishment than getting those slippery coats off to expose the milky almond. I put a few in a bowl and covered with boiling water for 2 mins then drained and rinsed them. Then the skins slip right off!
I blanched the green beans as well And served them without butter and they were perfect.
A side salad with tomatoes and radishes sealed the meal.
1 lb trout fillets with skin
2/3 cup flour
salt and pepper
juice of one lime with zest (in lieu of lemon)
Dredge the fish in flour with the spices. Put in a greased pan Covered with melted butter and broil for 7 minutes. While the fish cooks brown the almonds in butter. Add the lime juice parsley an hot sauce to the almond mixture and pour on top of fish and serve immediately.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
One (5 Lbs) boneless leg of lamb
Cut deep slits in lamb and rub garlic, salt, pepper and rosemary all over inserting into slits. Cover with plastic and marinate overnight.
Preheat oven to 425, roast lamb for 20 minutes and then turn down to 350 and roast for 80 minutes more (*or twenty minutes per pound total) Meat should register at least 135 for medium rare. Let rest 20 minutes and then slice and serve.
Separate 6 fresh large eggs
Heat 1 cup whole milk in a saucepan
Melt 2 1/2 tablespoons of butter in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons of flour and cook for 3 minutes whisking constantly. Slowly incorporate milk. Take off of heat for one minute. Add egg YOLKS one at a time and stir until combined with roux.
This can be prepared up to 2 hours in advance.
Beat egg WHITES in stand mixer until soft peaks form. Fold 1/4 of egg white mixture into room temperature yolk mixture. Repeat adding 1/4 at a time and gently fold in.
Spray 10 4 oz ramekins with cooking spray. Add egg mixture to ramekins and bake at 350 for 25 minutes. Do not open the oven door for the first 20 minutes.
Thursday, May 6, 2010
This was really easy and quite delicious. Surprisingly, for a meatloaf, it was exquisite. The cuisinart made it simple simple simple.
12 oz ground bison
2 pieces whole wheat bread
2 garlic cloves
14 1/2 oz can diced tomatoes (in lieu of ketchup)
1 tbsp dry mustard
Handful of Parsley
2 tsp thyme
I used the cuisinart with the blender attachment. First cut the crusts off the bread and pulse in the cuisinart for 20 seconds to make bread crumbs. Put these aside and rinse the cuisinart. Peel the vegetables and throw them into the cuisinart and pulse for 30 seconds to very small pieces. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl with the bison. Rinse the cuisinart again and put in the diced toms, give it a whirl to a thick consistancy of ketchup. Add 1 cup of the pureed toms to the bowl. Add the spices. Take off the wedding ring, crack the eggs, and get a mixing.
I usually use the Martha method of shaping the loaf into a lasagna pan but this time I used the regular loaf pan sprayed with Pam. I cooked it at 350 for about an hour, placing the remaining tomato puree on top for the last 10 minutes. Let it rest for 15 before slicing. The slices of meatloaf came out perfect!
I served this with sauteed garlic and mushrooms (really, she was right in the movie, Julia's advice about not crowding the mushrooms is essential for browning) and a green salad.
So good, I had to blog about it!