Wednesday, December 30, 2009

PRESENTS

So Yohboh got me these for Christmas:

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Truffle Salt

Monday, December 28, 2009

Yummy Brown Liquor

I do not drink. I mean, I will have a glass of wine at book club but that is once every six weeks.

Yohboh drinks. In the summer he is a beer guy but come winter he drinks brown liquors.

This is one of his favorites. It is called Dimple Pinch.

Pinch

Being someone who does not drink, I cannot tell you if it yummy or not, but yohboh swears it is.

Also, his grandfather used to make sailboats with the empty bottles.

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How charming is that?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Dry Aging Meat

So remember when we were dry aging that rib roast?

Here is what it looked like ten days later.
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Originally it was 6.08 pounds. After a ten day age, it went to 5.644 pounds.

Here is the finished roasted beast:
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Friday, December 25, 2009

Sausage Balls

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Sausage balls are something my college roommate's mother made for us. They are totally bad for you and delicious as things that are totally bad for you can be. The thing is, I never made them until today. Every gathering I attend that I think sausage balls should be there, they are there. But I wanted some today and they were not there.

So I googled some recipes to make them myself. And they all called for Bisquick. But see, I do not buy Bisquick. So I looked up what is in Bisquick, and improvised. By improvised, I added scallions.

Minjenah's Sausage balls

1 pound of sausage (I used Jimmy Dean Sage), at room temperature
4 cups shredded cheese ( I used a mixture of Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack and White Cheddar), at room temperature
1/2 cup finely diced scallions
2 cups of flour
1 tablespoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Combine the sausage and cheese with your hands until it is a uniform pink globby mess. Combine the remaining ingredients in a bowl until well mixed. Add the floury stuff to the globby stuff until it is a uniform color of lighter pink glob with spots of green.

Roll into one inch balls.

Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until they look like the picture above.

The original recipe I linked to says it makes 5 dozen but when I made it I got three dozen. Maybe my inch is off....

CONTEST

So this year for fun, we decided to make houses out of graham crackers.

Here is my entry:
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Here is GaGa's (MY MY MY POKERFACE):
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Here is Yohboh's:
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WHO WON? You get to decide! Leave a comment!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Creamed Spinach

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I went to a dirty Santa party. I brought creamed spinach.

Creamed Spinach, adapted from the Barefoot Contessa
INGREDIENTS
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
4 cups chopped yellow onions (2 large)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
3 cups half and half
3 pounds frozen chopped spinach, defrosted (5 10-ounce) packages)
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Gruyere cheese

METHOD
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt the butter in a pan over medium heat. Add the onions and saute until translucent, about 15 minutes. Add the flour and nutmeg and cook, stirring, for 2 more minutes. Add the half and half and cook until thickened. Squeeze as much liquid as possible from the spinach and add the spinach to the sauce. Add 1/2 cup of the Parmesan cheese and mix well. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.

Transfer the spinach to a baking dish and sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup Parmesan and the Gruyere on top. Bake for 45 minutes until hot and bubbly. Serve hot.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Monday Night Dinner

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Kale, baked potato, acorn squash and a marinated pork tenderloin.

Butter and Light Butter

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This is light butter's ingredient list:
Butter (cream, salt), water, modified tapoica starch, salt, vegetable mono- and diglicerides, lactic acid, potassium sorbate and sodium benzoate, pgpr, xanthan gum, natual flavor, vitamin A palmitate, beta carotene.

Also it mentions all the ingredients in the list except the first one are not in regular butter.

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This is the ingredient list in real butter:
Cream, Salt

So which one would you eat?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Menu For Hope

Menu for Hope


So if you have a foodie love: Menu for Hope has it for you. The great Pim has started a great project for those interested. It is a raffle with all sorts of fancy goodies from the world of food blogger.

I am all over the Sous Vide that Jaden has.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Dry Aging Meat

So I have mentioned a few times about how we dry age a standing rib roast. This is how we do it:

1) Wait for a standing rib roast to go on sale.

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2) Unwrap it and put it on a rack
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3) Stick it in the fridge and forget it.

That is it!

We do have a small dorm fridge (leftover from college days) we specifically use to dry age meat.

This is the roast we intend to eat for Christmas.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

GO MEAT

So I was invited to meet chef Delilah Winder on behalf of Hillshire Farms. There was also a free lunch. Free food made me come. Delilah Winder is famouse for her mac and cheese. It has seven cheeses.

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Here are three of them.

It was tasty. Hillshire Farms is promoting the Go Meat Mama's Kithcen program. Also, Delilah was here to cook for Nicholas House which is a charity I was unaware of but found to be a great cause.

Delilah was very nice and cheerful. Thanks for the invite Dre!

I was not paid for this post but I did get a lunch and a tee shirt.

Knife Sharpening

We got some wonderful knives when we got married FIVE years ago. It was time to get them sharpened.

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It is such a satisfying sound to hear a knife sharpened.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Bakepaloozah 2009 ALL DONE

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The end result

Bakepaloozah 2009 Part Three: Toffee

I do not own a candy thermometer. I should, but I don't. Yet I can make this toffee:

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quite easily. I was afraid of candy making and hard crack or soft crack or whatever. But I can do this and so should you!

Toffee
1 stick of butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup slivered almonds

Before you start, line a cookie sheet with foil and brush lightly with melted butter.

Take the butter and sugar and melt it in a pot. Stir it until it makes a syrup. Keep stirring it until there are wisps of smoke coming out. This takes about seven minutes. You can tell it is ready by the wisps of smoke and it will get a shade darker.

Pour immediately onto the greased cookie sheet. Sprinkle the chocolate over it and cover with an inverted cookie sheet to keep the heat in. This stuff is HOT so I do not recommend doing this around children. Even though children want to flock around because you are making candy. When the choclate chips get shiny, spread them to make a smooth layer of chocolate. Sprinkle on the almonds and press down slightly so that they stick.

Let cool completely and break into yummy chunks.

Note: you can double this recipe but it seems to add two more minutes for the stirring.

Bakepaloozah 2009 Part Two: Gingersnaps

Gingersnaps are my favorite non chocolate cookie to make. It makes the whole house smell AMAZING. Also, it is an old school cookie. It is very yummy with a nice slice of triple creme cheese.

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Gingersnaps

3/4 cup shortening (I know shortening but I have made it with butter and I LIKE THE SHORTENING ONES BETTER!)
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses

2 1/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 Tablespoon ground ginger
1/2 Tablespoon ground cinnnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Sugar
Candied Ginger

Cream the first two ingredients until fluffy. Add the next two. It should still be fluffy.

In another bowl, sift the next six ingredients. Add the dry stuff to the fluffy stuff.

Roll into little balls, about the size of a big marble or a dice. Dip one side in sugar. Put a sliver a candied ginger in the middle.

Bake at 375 about ten minutes.

Makes about four dozen.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Bakepaloozah 2009 Part One: Spiced Nuts

So every year, I make a baked tin of goodies. I thought I would share with the internet what I do. Not to show off, but to show you internet that it does not take superhuman effort to make a nice baked tin of goodies. I start with a recipe that is, ironically, not a baked good. It is spiced nuts.

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These are very easy to make. As in I made four batches of this (16 cups of spiced nuts) in 45 minutes.

Spiced Nuts

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups unsalted mixed nuts (I use pecans, almonds and walnuts)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Mix spices and reserve. Heat the nuts in a dry skillet and cook, stirring frequently, until they begin to toast, about 4 minutes. Add the butter and cook, stirring, until the nuts begin to darken, about 1 minute. Add the spices, the sugar, 1 tablespoon water, and the salt and cook, stirring, until the sauce thickens and the nuts are glazed, about 5 minutes. (Your house will smell AMAZING!)

Remove the nuts from the heat and transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, separating them with a fork. Let the nuts stand until cooled and the sugar has hardened, about 10 minutes. Store in an airtight container.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Dumplings

I love dumplings. Yohboh, who is so sweet, bought me a book on dumplings. So we had frozen dumplings:
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I think I want to do a dumpling party. Interested?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Melding of junkfood

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This is a burrito. What kind of burrito you ask?

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A steak and cheese burrito. So that is TWO kinds of junk food in ONE!

Bar

If I was going to have a bar, I would name it The Volstead Act, because that is what drinking is all about. Ban it, and they will drink.

Monday, December 7, 2009

That is a really big Korean pear

My mother is an amazing purveyor of fruit:
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She got us 5 kilos of pears. Or six pears.

Split Pea Soup

I like this soup.

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Split Pea Soup
One glug olive oil
1 onion chopped
1 carrot chopped
1 rib of celery chopped
2 spoonfuls of garlic puree

6 cups ham broth
16 ounce split peas
2 cups chopped ham

Saute the first five ingredients until everything gets mushy. Add the broth and the split peas. Bring to a boil then let simmer until the peas get mushy (do you sense a theme here?). This takes about 30 minutes. Add the ham and let it get warmed through.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Beefy Goodness

For yohboh's 31st birthday, I got him a large hunk of beef. He decided to dry age it for a week. This is what it looked like:
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It was a bit funky.

Here is what we had for dinner:
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with golden beets. Golden beets are tasty but not as beety as red beets.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Kitchen Shortcut

I have blogged about this before but I think that this merits another entry.

I make my own chopped garlic in olive oil.
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I made that large jar on the left worth of garlic. I do it fairly chunky so I can use mostly whole cloves. I also had a little bit left over:
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This paste makes really good garlic bread too.

It took about eight minutes to make this and clean up the food processor. Totally worth it to me.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

International Snack Foods

So Super H Mart FINALLY opened near me. I got yohboh this Korean version of Cheetos called Toonies:
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It is not as good as a Cheeto in that it lacked that fake cheese oil/powder stuff. But it did come with a sticker, like a Cracker Jack.
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White Turkey Chili

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This recipe but instead of two cans of green chiles, I used a can of green chile enchilada sauce.

Also, I think it is all the mix ins of cilantro, cheese and sour cream that make it. And a squirt of lime juice is a really nice finish.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Pizza Bubbles

I remember watching 60 minutes do a story about Domino's Pizza when I was a child. This story went about how important it was to have the exact same pizza in Michigan as in Toledo. One thing that was lambasted was the pizza bubble. There should NOT be pizza bubbles.

What is a pizza bubble?
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Yohboh loves a pizza bubble. I have no idea how to control a pizza bubble but he was very happy by this one:
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