Archive for ‘Uncategorized’

April 25, 2017

Oven Roasted BBQ Ribs

INGREDIENTS

  • rack of ribs
  • dry rub
  • bbq sauce

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. apply dry rub evenly. cover and refrigerate 2-8 hours.
  2. preheat oven to 250F.
  3. cover ribs with aluminum foil. bake on middle rack 2hr
  4. uncover. bring temperature up to 300. coat in bbq sauce. bake another 1-1.5 hours.
  5. optional: bring temp up to 500 (or broil), ~5m.
March 15, 2017

Beef Pot Pie

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion or shallots, diced
  • 1/3 cup celery, diced
  • 3 large carrots, diced
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup mushrooms, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1.5 tbs worchestershire sauce
  • 2 tbs tomato paste
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • salt/pepper
  • 3tbs AP flour
  • 1 15oz can beef broth
  • 1 package puff pastry, thawed (can take 30-40m)
  • 1 egg, beaten with a tsp of water

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Thaw puff pastry. Use two packages if you wanna be fancy and attempt a weave for the crust.
  2. Season ground beef with salt and pepper. Heat large skillet over medium high, add a tbs oil or so and heat until shimmering. Saute beef until almost cooked through. A little pink is ok. Stirring as needed. Remove beef and set aside
  3. In remaining oil, add onions ad celery. Saute until just soft, ~2-3m. Add garlic, parsley, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, caraway seeds and continue to saute, another minute or two, until fragrant.
  4. Add carrots, mushrooms, peas, tomato paste, and saute 7-8m or until carrots just start to soften (will still be a bit crunchy but outside will give way to pressure from a fork). Salt as needed.
  5. Stir beef back in. Stir in flour. Slowly stir in broth. Once mixture begins to thicken and bubble, turn heat down on low and simmer 20-30m.
  6. Preheat oven to 450F.
  7. Spoon beef into a large baking pan. Cut puff pastry into strips. Lay strips down on top of beef. Brush on egg mixture and place in oven. 30m or until crust becomes golden and poofy.

July 20, 2016

Baked Eggs with Lentils and Merguez

baked eggs1

Eggs for dinner? Suuurrre why not. I started making this in the morning, intending it for brunch. But it took until 7:30pm for me to complete it. Such is the life with a small human in the house.

NOTE: All measurements are approximate…taste your cooking as you go. Eyeball it. You don’t need to measure. 😀 Plus, aint nobody got time to wash measuring cups and sh*%.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2-3 links of spicy merguez (lamb sausage)
  • ~1 cup red lentils, washed and drained (sift for stones!)
  • 1 medium sweet potato, chopped*
  • 1/3 cup red or orange bell peppers diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 tbs tomato paste
  • ~1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • pinch of sugar (to cut acidity of tomato paste)
  • ~1 cup chicken stock
  • Eggs

*I sliced on the diagonal, so it cooks faster. Red lentils tend to cook quickly. You don’t want crunchy sweet potatoes. This technique, I believe, is called “rolling wedges”. This is how I cut carrots, zucchinis, etc. Very useful.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Remove sausage from casing. Heat dutch oven on medium high until smoking hot. Add a tbs or two of oil (I always use avocado for its high smoke point and lack of flavor). When oil is shimmering, add sausage and break it up with the edge of your spatula. Remove and set aside once cooked through.
  2. In remaining oil from sausage, add onions, bell peppers, garlic. Salt generously. (Depending on saltiness of the chicken stock and tomato sauce you’re using, you may want to salt lightly.)  Add seasonings. Continue to saute ~5m or until onions are soft and translucent.
  3. Add sweet potatoes. Continue to saute ~3m or so. Longer if you accidentally cut your potatoes too thick.
  4. Mix in tomato paste, tomato sauce, and chicken stock.
  5. Once tomato paste has dissolved, add lentils. Stir. Lentils should not be completely submerged. Add water/stock until it looks like ::this:: or a little drier.
  6. Bring to a slow boil. Turn heat to simmer, mix in sausage, and cover. Simmer for 20m or so until lentils are just soft. (I prefer al dente over soggy)
  7. Grease an 8” cast iron skillet (or if you have a deeper skillet you can use from beginning to end, no transfer is necessary) and spoon in lentil mixture. Using the back of a spoon, press down and create divots for the eggs. Crack an egg in each. Broil in the oven for 5m or so until eggs firm up to your liking.

baked eggs2

Tada! That’s it. Pretty easy to make, I just couldn’t get away long enough to chop veggies and tend to the stove until I put the little one to bed.

PS: I love my wooden spoon. Got it in Halifax this summer on our family trip. My dream (or one of many) is to start a wooden utensils collection. Does that make me weird?

Something so grounded and OG about using a wooden spoon.

And cast iron skillets.

And baked eggs.

July 6, 2016

We ❤️ Ube!

  
The offspring’s first taste of ube. I think he likes it. 

May 27, 2016

Miso Salmon

IMG_0804.jpgINGREDIENTS

  • 2 Salmon filets
  • 2 tbs white miso
  • 1 tbs mirin
  • 1 tbs rice wine or sake
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • optional garnishes: sesame seeds, sliced green onion

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Marinate salmon in miso mixture for 2-3 hours in the fridge.
  2. Line baking pan with aluminum foil and brush with oil. Scrape off most of the miso and place salmon on pan. Miso is super salty. Less is more.
  3. Broil on high for 8m or until edges just start to bubble. Remove from oven and set aside.
  4. Heat frying pan on high, add a tbs of oil, place salmon skin side down for 2 min or so to crisp up skin.
  5. Serve. (optional: top with sliced green onion)
May 12, 2016

Liver and Onion

I’ve been craving Luby’s liver and onion. Where can I get some in the north east? Do yankees eat liver and onion?

No pics. Too hungry and forgot. But liver isn’t a pretty dish anyhow. REALLY easy. Can’t believe I haven’t tried this before. Not to mention CHEAP.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb liver, drained in colander
  • 50/50 flour cornstarch mixture for dredging
  • paprika
  • black pepper
  • salt
  • milk (I’m using almond)
  • 2 large sweet yellow onions, sliced

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • Drain liver, then soak in milk for 30-60m.
  • Pat dry and season with salt, pepper, paprika on both sides. Dredge in cornstarch/flour mixture to evenly coat.
  • Heat large skillet on medium high. Add a tbs or so of oil. Saute onions until caramelized and soft. This may take awhile. Add some water to speed it up. Season with salt. Add a pat of butter if you feel up to it. Remove from skillet and set aside.
  • Reheat skillet. Add frying oil (I like avocado oil. Anything with a high smoke point works, but avocado oil imparts no flavor). Heat until oil is shimmery. Place liver in pan, spacing it out and avoid crowding. Fry for ~3-5 min each side, depending on your stove and liver thickness. Should be browned evenly with no blood bubbling up.
  • Serve and top with sautéed onions. Yum.
April 20, 2016

Creamy Butternut Squash Linguini with Fried Sage

IMG_6690Good to be blogging again! The Little Dictator is almost 6 months old and while I’ve been back in the kitchen for awhile now, I really haven’t found the time to write down and take pictures of the hodge-podge dinners I’ve been making…

This sucker took me almost an hour. Mainly because I had to make everything in batches with my tiny skillet and tiny bullet blender in my tiny kitchen. (OK, huge by New York standards but I’m still a Texan by heart and by habit.)

Adapted from this wonderful recipe on cookieandkate. And by adapted, I mean mostly copied. It’s good stuff! Didn’t need changes.

INGREDIENTS (serves 4)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage
  • 2 pound butternut or kabocha squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into small ½-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt and/or kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups vegetable/chicken broth (I used a little less)
  • 12 ounces whole grain linguine or fettuccine
  • OPTIONAL: shaved Parmesan, BACON…side of spinach…

INSTRUCTIONS

 

  • Heat oil in 12 inch skillet or large dutch oven over medium heat. Once the oil is shimmering, add the sage and toss to coat. Let the sage get crispy before transferring it to a small bowl. Sprinkle it lightly with sea salt and set the bowl aside.
  • Add squash, onion, garlic and red pepper flakes to skillet. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Add broth. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until squash is soft and liquid is reduced by half, about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.
  • Once the squash mixture is done cooking, remove it from heat and let it cool slightly. Transfer the contents of the pan to a blender. Reserve the skillet. Purée the mixture until smooth (beware of hot steam escaping from the top of the blender), then season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Combine pasta, squash purée and ¼ cup cooking liquid in reserved skillet and cook over medium heat, tossing and adding more pasta cooking liquid as needed, until sauce coats pasta, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper if necessary.
  • Serve pasta topped with fried sage, more black pepper and shaved Parmesan/Pecorino and/or smoked salt, (BACON?) if desired.

NOTES:

  • In hindsight, spinach linguini makes for some ugly presentation. For some reason I still think spinach pasta is healthier. Probably not true.
  • Save a few whole leaves of sage and fry it up for a nice garnish
  • Add chopped fried bacon after blending! (I like bacon. Can you tell?)
  • Onion and garlic can be chopped roughly. You’re blending it, so doesn’t matter. Squash is chopped evenly to promote even cooking.
  • Set aside broth/liquid before blending so you can tweak the final consistency of the sauce.  I liked my sauce thicker. Didn’t add pasta water, didn’t even use all 2 cups of broth.

Unfortunately, after all this work, I forgot to savor my meal and wolfed it down in five minutes. As most parents, I now have a habit of eating as fast as I can, even when the small human is asleep for the night. Le Sigh.

More pictures! Curtesy of RChang while I cleaned up the mess I made in the kitchen. He kept calling over to me “I don’t know… still looks like Jabba the Hutt to me..”

IMG_6691

So I added some embellishments. IMG_6692

EDIT: 2/1/17 Tried this again but with a toddler running around these days, I had to find ways to cut down my cooking time. I added onions, whole garlic cloves, and cubed squash into a roasting pan and roasted on 425F for 20m or so. Tossed it all in a food processor and thinned it out with chicken stock. So much easier. And the caramelization from roasting adds a sweetness and depth that the original version didn’t have. Yay for lazy cooks!

May 9, 2015

I Miss Food.

Oh man. Four months since my last recipe.

I have a good excuse. Really.

Try three months of god awful morning sickness.

See y’all when this nightmare ends.

(yea yea yea.. it’ll all be worth it in the end.)

November 5, 2014

Beef and Scallions in Sweet Bean Sauce

beef

I love this sweet and saucy dish. Great for wraps. Think of it as a Chinese taco. Make a bunch of dishes, then pass out thin, flour “tortillas” and make your own wrap. Paired with bright and crisp curlicues of green onion, this enticing dish can easily enter anyone’s repertoire. (Do I sound like a commercial yet?) The sauce is called Tian Mian Jang and it’s the base for Peking Duck sauce. Not the same as hoisen, oyster, chili bean sauce, or any other sauce. Sweet Bean Sauce is what you’re looking for. Next experiment with this stuff: zha jiang mian.

Please don’t buy pre-cut stir fry beef at the super market. You will invariably get tough, chewy, totally inedible rubber bands. I really don’t know what cut of beef is usually used for stir fry, and I suspect there IS no one cut used for stir fry. I wandered into the grocery store with nothing specific in mind. The top round roast looked pretty promising. So that’s what I bought. Turned out perfectly tender.

On cutting stir fry strips (beef or pork)

  • FREEZE your beef for a few hours before cutting. This will make your life easier as the meat will be stiff and not slide around the cutting board/against your knife. Do not freeze overnight or it’ll be a solid block of meat ice.
  • Cut on the diagonal and you wont ever have to worry about what is with/against the grain.
  • While cutting on the diagonal, slice your chunk of meat into thin, round slices. Then stack said slices and cut again to form strips.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 scallions, sliced thinly on the diagonal
  • 0.5 lb beef, top round, cut in strips
  • sauce
    • 2 tbs tian mian jang/sweet bean paste
    • 1 tsp rice wine (michiu)
    • 1 tbs water
    • 0.5 tsp brown sugar
  • marinade:
    • 2 tbs soy sauce
    • 1 tsp rice wine
    • 1/2 tsp corn starch

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Place sliced green onion in a large bowl of ice and water. Set aside. (Can do this the day before). This will create nice plump and curly green onions. It’ll also cut some of the bite. Drain and gently pat dry. Pile on serving plate and set aside.
  2. Marinate beef for 30+ minutes. Dissolve corn starch in liquid, then add meat.
  3. Heat skillet over medium high heat until smoking hot. Add 1 tbs oil, swish to coat pan until it just starts to shimmer, then add beef. Cold pan = meat sticking to pan. Toss and stir fry until juuuust barely pink. Remove and set aside.
  4. Mix sauce and pour into hot pan. Let it bubble and thicken. Stir for 1-2 minutes or so. Add meat back in and toss to coat, 2-3 minutes.
  5. Pour beef over green onions. Serve with rice or chinese “tortilla” wraps.
September 30, 2014

Baked Eggs with Moroccan Spiced Lamb and Lentils

Very versatile breakfast food. This will work with chorizo, spinach or kale, beans instead of lentils, etc etc. I’m sure you can make the whole thing in a cast iron skillet, but I made such a big batch it wouldn’t fit…

I prefer green lentils over red as they tend to hold their shape better. Not a fan of smooshy lentils.

Oh, and I also like to eat this with lots of sriracha. But any hot sauce will do (:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb lamb sausage, casings removed
  • 2 cups green lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 small tomatoes, or 1 can 15 oz crushed tomatoes
  • 1 15oz can beef broth
  • water
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • salt

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Heat a 3 qt or so dutch oven over medium high heat. (Or if you’re making half a serving, it should all fit in a cast iron skillet) Add 1 tbs cooking oil and heat until shimmering. Add lamb sausage and break it up as it browns. Remove from pot and set aside.
  2. In remaining oil, add onions, bell pepper, paprika, parsley, and cumin. Salt generously. Sauté until just soft. 2-3 minutes. Add garlic, continue to sauté until fragrant. 2 minutes.
  3. Add tomatoes and simmer, scraping up anything stuck to the bottom of the pot. Add bay leaves, lentils, lamb, and beef broth. Stir and bring to a low boil. Add more water if needed to just submerge lentils (should not look soupy, lentil’s don’t absorb much).
  4. Cover and reduced heat to medium low, or a low simmer. 20-30 minutes or until lentils are just tender.
  5. Crack 4 or so eggs over the top, don’t stir. Cover to steam eggs, still on low heat, 3 minutes or until whites are fully cooked and yolk is still runny. (Or if making it directly in a cast iron skillet, remove from the stove and broil in the oven uncovered until eggs cook.) Scoop into bowls and serve, careful not to break the yolk.

I cook the eggs 2 at a time and reserve the rest of the lentils for the next day’s breakfast. These lentils will last you a few mornings. Just scoop lentils into a oven safe skillet (cast iron is your friend), mix to heat through over medium high heat on the stove, crack an egg or two over the top, then broil in the oven until eggs are cooked to the consistency of your liking.