Steak Au Poivre from Jacques and Julia
This was not only delicious but the first time I have started a fire in my kitchen! But I'm getting head of myself. Making the sauce (and the flame) is the last step! Take a couple of tender steaks, whichever is your favorite. Jacques Pepin and Julia Child suggested a loin strip steak. I used some pieces of tri-tip because they were on sale when I went shopping. Salt them on both sides and then rub a lot of coarse ground pepper into both sides. You can use a pepper mix if you'd like, as I did, a seasoned pepper called California ...
Yesterday I made a peach crisp with some of the Indian Blood peaches from our tree. I remembered using the pits and peels a few years ago to make peach vinegar and decided to try it again. It's deceptively simple but I wish I'd had more peelings and pits. Just tie together the pits and peels in a cheesecloth bundle and simmer with a cup or two of vinegar for 20 minutes or so. Cool. Store in the refrigerator.
Melon Salad with a Kick
This came from Raising the Salad Bar: Beyond Leafy Greens--Inventive Salads with Beans, Whole Grains, Pasta, Chicken, and More, although she suggested 3 melons: honeydew, cantaloupe and watermelon. I used two for simplicity. [caption id="attachment_3174" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Melon Salad with Cayenne"][/caption] watermelon, cut in chunks cantaloupe, cut in chunks lime juice salt a pinch of cayenne pepper Put the melon in a bowl and sprinkle with some lime juice and salt. Take a pinch of cayenne pepper and sprinkle it around, then toss the melon cubes together. Taste and add more cayenne if you'd like.
Easy Appetizer with Boboli and Store-Bought Artichoke Dip
The lady who hosted my niece's bridal shower made this a few weeks ago and when I thought about an easy appetizer for my book club meeting last night I decided this was perfect! [caption id="attachment_3171" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Artichoke Dip Appetizer"][/caption] Artichoke jalapeno dip (from Costco) Boboli crust grated Parmesan cheese Spread the Boboli crust with the dip and top with some grated Parmesan. Heat in a medium oven (350 F or so) until warmed through, then broil until just lightly browned on the top. Cut in small wedges and serve.
[caption id="attachment_3167" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Cucumber Salad"][/caption] This cucumber salad recipe is easy and delicious. The vinegar is not overpowering and the sweet/sour combination works well. 2-3 cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced 1/2 cup green or red peppers, chopped (optional) 1/2 cup sliced onions 1 cup water 1/4 cup vinegar 2 tsp salt 3 Tbs sugar Mix the cucumbers, green peppers and onions in a small bowl. Mix the water, vinegar, salt and sugar in a small bowl and then pour over the cucumber mix. Refrigerate at least an hour before serving.
Grilled Vegetable Kabobs
If you're grilling, try cutting up whatever vegetables you have around and putting them on a skewer to grill. I like to marinate them in a bit of Italian dressing or homemade vinaigrette, whatever I have around, but you could skip that step, too. Cut up whatever vegetables you like. My favorites include: [caption id="attachment_3125" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Grilled Vegetable Kabobs"][/caption] zucchini, yellow or green onions (red, yellow or white) peppers, of any color Thread on skewers and grill, turning every few minutes. You can serve them on the skewers or put them in a bowl like I did here.
Fried Peppers and Onions
I use this same basic recipe for fried peppers and onions for many different kinds of dishes. They are fantastic as part of a taco or burrito, of course. They also go great on a sausage or meatball sandwich. They make a lovely side dish just as they are, as well. You can use a variety of colored peppers when they're cheap or use mostly green ones with just a bit of red or yellow or orange to brighten up the dish. [caption id="attachment_3160" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Cooked Peppers and Onions"][/caption] Slice up the peppers and an onion (I typically use about a ...
Roast Sticky Chicken for Chicken Tacos
Rub on a fantastic spice mix, then slow roast your chicken to perfection. The original recipe for this "Sticky Chicken" calls for cooking it 5 hours at 225. I upped the temperature to 300 because I was a bit "short" on time and cooked it about 3.5 hours. You can go follow the link for the spice rub. Oh, I also didn't let it sit overnight with the rub on it. It is much better if you take the time to do that but it's still darn good if you just rub it on and pop the bird in the oven ...
Grind Your Own Meat: My First Home-Ground Beef for Hamburgers
Thanks to KitchenAid FGA Food Grinder Attachment for Stand Mixers, which I've rarely, if ever, used before, I ground up a two-pound blade steak last night for hamburgers. (Froze 1 pound for later use.) [caption id="attachment_3148" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Beef Being Ground"][/caption] You have to cut the meat up into 1" cubes or long thinner strips. This is probably a bit easier to do if the meat is partially frozen or at least very cold. After it was ground, I mixed it with: 1 egg 2/3 cup cracker crumbs a large spoonful of Dijon mustard a few splashes of Worcestershire salt and pepper to taste some chopped fresh parsley Mix together ...
My niece got me inspired to try quinoa again. I was not too crazy about plain as a side dish, but dressed up with some veggies and a Dijon vinaigrette it was really good! I cooked the quinoa in my rice cooker on the regular rice setting, then let it cool. [caption id="attachment_3145" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Quinoa Salad"][/caption] 1 cup quinoa 1/4 tsp salt 1 1/2 cups water 1 cucumber, peeled and diced 1 carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks 5 radishes, cut into matchsticks 3 pieces of hearts of palm, sliced 1 roasted red pepper, diced an assortment of colored bell peppers, sliced into matchsticks Cook the quinoa either in a ...