Archive

cooking

P1040801

I found some corned beef on super-clearance at Hannaford. Hmm, it’s not corned beef season, but it is grill season, which means pastrami/smoked corned beef was on my menu.

I smoked it for a few hours on a grill with apple wood scraps from when the tree was trimmed earlier this year.
P1040838

Let it cool & chill overnight, then started slicing. The eating happened quickly. “Mmm, this is good. Wait. Must get picture.”
P1040837

Albany John made up a sliced meat platter.
P1040835

Pastrami!

P1040771

Ah, the joys of the swine. I picked up a ~10lb package of “Kurobuta” pork baby back ribs for $3.65/lb. What a steal. And while there is a high amount of bone in baby back ribs, 10 lbs of baby back ribs is a lot. 10 lbs is a great amount for a party.
P1040774

Once the package thawed out, I separated the ribs into two containers to season and marinate.

 

 

P1040775

Guess what’s really easy to make? Galbi marinade. You can use bosc pear if you can’t find Asian pears. Super yummy, and not as dark as the store-bought kind.
P1040776

Half of the ribs got slathered in galbi (which wound up being very mildly flavored, but did a great job for tenderizing).
P1040778

The other half got rubbed with rib-a-licious spices. You know – some sugar, some paprika, some chili powders, some salt, some black pepper, some mustard… a little of this, a little of that. And generously packed on each rib section.
P1040779

Then they sit (covered) in the fridge overnight. The fridge will smell amazing.
P1040792

Then it’s time for grilling! A rib rack is really awesome and fairly necessary for a grill when making baby back ribs. They’re so thin and small that you don’t really want them to lay flat on the grill. And a rib rack saves space, you can cram more ribs on the grill to cook at the same time.
P1040793

All lined up.

P1040794

I used the “cowboy” style charcoal, and let the ribs sit for about 60-90 minutes, covered.

P1040806

Hello, darlings! The meat retracts while cooking, the rib bones pop out a bit, and a nice lacquer forms on the outside of each rib.
P1040808

Done.
P1040804

Now I’m just hoping Albany John and I finish our never-ending living room renovation project so we can have a big housewarming party and serve up some of these ribs.

P1040902 P1040899 P1040903

 

What’s not to love about duck? So much skin, so much fat. Husbear carved up a duck I picked up at Ga Ga Lok/Jia Jia Liu/Asian Supermarket on Central Ave. It was mostly fat, but now my duck fat stores are back up. And the duck rinds were delicious. They last in the fridge for a few days if you can’t manage to eat all of a duck’s skin in one sitting.

P1040753

Adventure in Food had a rockin’ special in April for a full Australian grassfed ribeye roast for $5.99/lb. Yes. So yes. We grilled it up for Albany John’s birthday in May. It was an awesome and affordable way to go all out for any occasion.
P1040726

Here’s what the full roast looked like unfrozen and out of the vac bag. Yep, that’s one whole ribeye roast alright. This was a hefty guy, something close to 15 lbs, if I recall.

P1040727

Underside. I wanted to try dry aging this in our fridge. Salted the outside liberally, and tucked it in the fridge as pictured on cooling racks, turning every few days.
P1040737

Mr. Beefers after a few days in the fridge shortly before go-time. It took up about half of a row in my fridge, and after a few days I started talking to it and calling it Mr. Beefers. “Good morning, Mr. Beefers,” and “My, you’re looking well today, Mr. Beefers!”

At this point I wasn’t sure how well the experiment would turn out. Would Mr. Beefers acquire an off flavor from the fridge? Would it make any difference?

P1040741

A few hours over indirect heat on the grill (and covered on occasion). I didn’t carve anything off before slapping it on the grill. Once it hit rare, it came off the grill. And as you can see from the first image, I didn’t screw it up and cook it well done!
P1040749

And then we play the waiting game.
P1040751

It was an intensely beefy flavor, to be sure, although I’m not sure how much was from the dry aging or the grilling. However, I did slice off two large hunks so Mr. Beefers would fit on the grill, so I’ll give you a heads up if I notice something spiritual going on when it’s not kissed with smoky goodness. Overall, it was an awesome way to feed a crowd of 15+ people (with leftovers for seemingly EVER) for under $100. Definitely check out Adventure in Food’s specials page for deals like this when they come up.

P1040161

Snow can’t stop me from bringing the heat! I shoveled out the grill, cleaned her off, and smoked up some pork shoulder and ribs. As you can see, one of her wheels got lost in all of this snow somewhere along the way.

P1040145

The night before I’d picked up some baby back ribs at Roma. Just a bit over $5 for a half rack. Not too shabby. Sure beats restaurant prices.

P1040146

And I also can’t say no to $2.99/lb pork shoulder.

P1040149

I made my own rib rub up. A little spicy kick, but nothing outrageous.

P1040152

Rubbed liberally on both pieces of pork, and let them sit over night.

P1040156
P1040157

Here they are after a night in the fridge.
P1040154

Coals got all nice & toasty.
P1040158

Dumped the coals over half of the bottom of the grill with some applewood chips in tin foil on top of the coals.. Put a pan on the other side to catch any meat drips.

P1040160

The porky duo hangs out above the pan, and then I cover the grill, shaking the bottom occasionally to release the dead ashes which clog up air flow. Wound up putting another chimney of coals on here.
P1040166

Ribs smoked for about 5 hours before hunger set in. Good amount of smoke, I probably could have let them go another 30 minutes with some sauce, but overall I’m happy with how they came out.
P1040169

The pork shoulder I let go for about 7 hours. Nice bark formation on the outside. Planning on using some of the fattier bits for split pea soup

 

Pork rib recipe here:

P1040153

P1030791

Gluten, who eats it, right? While I don’t have a gluten issue, a bunch of my friends seem to have some sort of gluten sensitivity. I’ve personally been eating less gluteny things just because my body hasn’t been craving it, so when it was time to bring something to a Shabbat potluck (or Shabbatluck as I’ve dubbed it), I was scratching my head trying to come up with something gluten free and Kosher. Kosher is kind of difficult for me personally because I have to stop and think about what I’m combining in a dish (like, meat + dairy is a no-no, and pork is out of the question). But toss in gluten-free and Sherlock Jane is on the case! So I figured I’d take a page from the Paleo/Primal cookbook and use sweet potatoes as the crust. I kind of hate labeling foods as paleo, but it’s an easy tag to generally figure out something is crap-free in terms of ingredients. So this is paleoish. or Paleish.

P1030789

Start with a tart pan and a shredded sweet potato mixed with some eggs and whatever other seasonings you want to toss in there. I bought this Fox Run 10″ tart pan off of Amazon. It’s a pretty crappy tart pan – doesn’t conduct heat very well for baking, so make sure you’ve got a pizza stone underneath it for true tarts to have even levels of heat through the center. For stuff like this it doesn’t really matter, though. We’re not making anything temperamental here

Any way, press your shredded sweet potato into the pan and bake it at 350F until it looks like this:

P1030790

Something like 15-25 minutes, depending on your oven and the amount of sweet potato shreds you’ve got going on. I went pretty sparse, and that became evident when they dried out while cooking (which is good, we want to remove some of that moisture to make a crust. But whatever, because only a psycho flips over their quiche to inspect the crust during a pot luck.

Any way, get out your eggs and milk (or cream), whisk them together, then shred some cheese (see, this is where Albany Jane checks out from Paleo-ville) and pour all of that over the crust. If it looks low in the pan, mix up a little more. Then blop some pesto on top. I had some pesto in the freezer from the summer. Man, it was nice to get a little blast of summer in the pan.

P1030793

Cook it at 350F until it sets in the center, somewhere in the 35-45 minute range. If you’re worried about leakage, flip over a baking sheet to catch any drips.

This was a potluck HIT! I was happily surprised. Usually the healthier/gluten-free/paleo dishes at a potluck get picked over, but I heard people asking for slices of this at dinner, so it was neat to see the “healthyish” dish have to get cut into smaller slices not because people wanted to be polite and try it, but because everyone really wanted a bite and liked it.

I’m not such an egg-as-a-main/quiche person myself, so I’d like to play around with this sweet potato crust concept with other savory “pie” type dishes, and sweet dishes.

P1030475

I saw a rack of lamb for about $10 at one of my local grocery stores. Fresh/never frozen, grass fed, antibiotic-free lamb from New Zealand. Sure, I’ll give it a whirl. I did a pretty decent job. If you get a thermometer, it makes it easy to make. I just set the thermometer at 140F and let it sit 15 minutes to rest after it reached that temperature. 140F renders a medium lamb.

P1030474

I seared the outsides of the rack of lamb in a pan on the stove, then slathered it with some dill mustard. To be honest, I preferred the lamb flavor without the powerful kick of mustard.

P1030473

I roasted this at about 400F for much longer than I thought I would have to. About 30 minutes.

P1030478

But whatevs, this gal made some pretty decent rack of lamb!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,714 other followers