Monthly Archives: October 2013

Mongolian Beef

MongolianBeef

I am always trying to get better with asian cooking. Without that huge gas flame and wok, I can only do so much. I always get the skillet really hot before cooking, but it is just not the same. This is my attempt to recreate PF Chang’s Mongolian Beef. It turned out OK, but not quite the same. I will keep working on it. I paired it with fried rice. All in all, I would definitely make it again.

Mongolian Beef

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound flank steak, thinly sliced across the grain
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • handful toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil

Instructions:

  1. Whisk together soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, 1 Tbsp vegetable oil, and 1/2 cup water.
  2. Heat soy sauce mixture in a medium saucepan until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine flank steak and cornstarch.
  4. Heat 1 cup vegetable in a large saucepan.
  5. Add beef and fry until browned and cooked through.
  6. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate, discard excess oil.
  7. Add beef and soy sauce mixture to the saucepan over medium heat and cook until sauce thickens.
  8. Stir in green onions, top with toasted sesame seeds, and serve immediately.
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The Pegu Club Cocktail

PeguClub

The Pegu Club was a Victorian style Gentlemen’s club in Rangoon, Burma (now Yangon, Myanmar). It was built in the 1880s to serve the British army officers and civilian administrators after the annexation of Upper Burma in 1885. It is located on Pyay Road opposite the Russian embassy. The Pegu is a Burmese river. The Pegu Club Cocktail, or the Pegu, is a gin based cocktail that was the signature drink of that gentleman’s club in Burma. The recipe famously appeared in the “Savoy Cocktail Book” of 1930 by Harry Craddock. However it appears to be first listed in “Barflies and Cocktails” by Harry McElhone of the famous Harry’s New York Bar in Paris.

This is a very refreshing drink. The temptation is to drink them too fast, especially if you are hot. But slow down and sip these slowly as you watch the sun set. Let the last rays of the sum wash over you as the coolness of this drinks spreads through your body as the cool night spreads across the sky. Relax.

The Pegu Club Cocktail

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 3/4 oz Orange Curaçao
  • 1/2 oz lime juice
  • dash Angostura Bitters
  • dash Regan’s Orange Bitters

Instructions:

  1. Build in a highball glass filled with ice.
  2. Stir until well chilled.
  3. Strain into a chilled coupe or martini glass.
  4. Garnish with lime twist.

PeguClubCocktail

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Tenderloin Roast Beef Sandwiches

TenderloinRoastBeefSandwiches

A couple of days ago, I made the Pepper Crusted Beef Tenderloin Roast. As good as it is, we never eat the whole thing. Which is good, because now you can slice it up thin and have it on a sandwich. I like mine on a sourdough hoagie roll. I always drizzle some of the Pomegranate Port Wine Sauce over it. Add some lettuce, pepperoncini, swiss cheese maybe. Build the sandwich the way you like it best. Of course it is always good with some fresh homemade potato chips. How easy can you get for a Monday night dinner?

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Ginger Smash, Fall Season

GingerSmashFall

This is another cocktail from the wonderful book Speakeasy. This book is from the owners of the Employees Only bar in New York City. It is filled with re-imagined cocktails from the Prohibition Era. It is a great addition to your bar library. This particular cocktail is a seasonal take on a gin smash. I used Leopold Brothers Small Batch Gin in this gin smash as its mellower taste played better with the pear. I did not have the St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram or Pimento Liqueur that the book called for as it is not in my bar inventory. I think it would add another dimension to this drink and make it go even better with the season. I will have to find it and try this drink again.

Ginger Smash, Winter Season

Ingredients:

  • 2 thin slices fresh ginger root
  • 5 thin slices Bartlet Pear
  • 1 1/2 tsp superfine sugar
  • 1 1/2 ounces Leoplod Brothers Small Batch Gin
  • 1 1/2 ounces Apfelkorn liqueur
  • 3/4 ounce fresh squeezed lemon juice

Instructions:

  1. In a Boston shaker glass, muddle the pear, ginger, and sugar.
  2. Pour in the gin, apple liqueur, and lemon juice.
  3. Add enough ice cubes to fill a rocks glass.
  4. Cover and shake hard to thoroughly mix ingredients.
  5. Pour unstrained into the rocks glass.
  6. Take a lemon peel and rub around the rim of the glass.
  7. Twist and top as a garnish.
  8. Also slide a thin pear slice on the rim of the glass.

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Slow Cooker Cassoulet

Cassoulet

Another hearty slow cooker meal for a cold day. This method shares some similarities with the original cassoulet. A cassoulet is a rich, slow-cooked casserole originating in the south of France, containing meat (typically pork sausages, goose, duck and sometimes mutton), and white beans. The dish is named after its traditional cooking vessel, the cassole, a deep, round, earthenware pot with slanting sides. This dish is cooked in a slow cooker which contains a ceramic insert. It has pork, sausage, chicken, and white beans. It is also cooked slowly over the course of the day. So, you can consider this a modern, easy cassoulet. Whatever you want to call it, it is a great dish on a cool autumn day in Colorado.

Slow Cooker Cassoulet

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound dried great northern beans, rinsed and picked over
  • 2 pounds boneless country style pork ribs, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 8 ounces kielbasa sausage, 1/4 inch slice
  • 2 onions, small dice
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3 1/2 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup brandy
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 4 bone in, skin on chicken thighs, excess fat trimmed

Instructions:

  1. Bring beans and 8 cups water to boil in medium saucepan over medium high heat.
  2. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until just beginning to soften, about 20 minutes.
  3. Drain beans and transfer to slow cooker.
  4. Pat pork dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium high heat until shimmering.
  6. Cook pork until well browned and transfer to slow cooker.
  7. Brown kielbasa in empty pan.
  8. Transfer to paper towel lined plate and reserve in refrigerator.
  9. Add onions to fat in pan and cook until softened.
  10. Stir in garlic, thyme, and tomato paste and cook until fragrant.
  11. Add broth, brandy, and tomatoes, scraping up any browned bits with wooden spoon.
  12. Bring broth mixture to boil, then transfer to slow cooker.
  13. Season chicken with salt and pepper and wrap in foil.
  14. Place foil packet atop stew in slow cooker.
  15. Cover and cook on low until pork and chicken are tender, about 8 hours.
  16. Remove foil packet from slow cooker and transfer to plate.
  17. When chicken is cool enough to handle, pull meat from bones in large chunks.
  18. Transfer 1 cup beans from slow cooker to bowl and mash until smooth.
  19. Stir mashed beans, chicken meat, and reserved kielbasa into slow cooker.
  20. Cook until heated through.

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Ground Beef Taco Seasoning

GroundBeefSoftTacosSome Mondays, I just want some basic ground beef tacos. You can definitely find plenty of taco seasoning packages at your favorite grocery store. However, it takes just a few minutes and is definitely cheaper to make your own. By the time you have browned your ground beef, you can mix up the below seasonings to add to the beef along with ¾ cup of water. Just like the packages say. Give it a try and you may never buy package taco seasoning again.

Taco Seasoning

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon beef bouillon granules
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Alternatively, here is a Whole 30 compliant recipe

2 Tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 ½ tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
¼ tsp. paprika
1 tsp. sea salt
¼-½ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)

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Rosemary Sea Salt Focaccia

RosemarySeaSaltFocaccia

So we were having Chicken Parmigiana tonight and we usually have pasta with it. Except I did not want to have pasta with it tonight. So I thought I would try some focaccia.

Rosemary Sea Salt Focaccia

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 2 ⅔ cup flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil + 2 Tbsp olive oil + more for oiling
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, chopped
  • sea salt

Instructions:

  1. In a 2 cup liquid measuring cup add a teaspoon of honey and the cup of warm {120 degrees} water.
  2. Give it a quick stir before sprinkling the packet of yeast over top of the water.
  3. In a mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment add in the flour (2 ⅔ cup) and tsp kosher salt.
  4. Turn it on and give it a quick stir.
  5. Pour in the yeast mixture and continue to blend until it starts to come together.
  6. Lastly measure and add two tablespoons of olive oil.
  7. Keep blending until a ball forms in your mixer.
  8. Lightly oil a large bowl with olive oil.
  9. Place the dough ball into the bowl and toss it around to coat the dough and the insides of the bowl.
  10. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and set it in a warm area to rise for two hours.
  11. Remove the dough and punch it down.
  12. Then press the dough down and stretch it into a well oiled small sheet pan.
  13. Cover again with the tea towel and let it rise for another 30-40 minutes.
  14. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
  15. Once the dough has risen for the second time, sprinkle with chopped fresh rosemary.
  16. Use your finger and make dimples every couple of inches.
  17. Drizzle with two tablespoons of olive oil making sure the oil pools up in those dimples.
  18. Sprinkle with flaked sea salt and pop into the preheated oven.
  19. Immediately reduce the temperature to 375 and bake for 18-20 minutes or golden brown.
  20. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes before removing.

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