Category Archives: FOOD

GRILLED SKIRT STEAK

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I love good steak, unfortunately I can’t afford to buy it. So when the rare opportunity to buy skirt steak on sale + 50% off arose, I somehow found room in my freezer for 10 packages. Yet even a good steak can be rendered bad if not done properly. This includes over seasoning the beef. I want to add flavor not cover it up. This marinade does just that. Since it was Mother’s Day we pulled out the grill and fired it up.

INGREDIENTS
2lb SKIRT STEAK
1c WORSTERSHIRE
1/2 c OIL
3 TB HOSIN SAUCE
2 TB GARLIC

Hosin is a thick, brown sauce found in the Oriental section of your grocery store. It is sweet with just a tiny kick.

In a zipper bag combine all the ingredients and mix by smooshing the bag. Open the skirt steak ams place into the nag. Push out much of the air ams zip it closed. Mush the bag some more to make sure it.gets all over the meat. Allow to marinate at least an hour but longer won’t hurt.

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Allow the bag to set out of the fridge about 20 minutes before grilling. Steak should never be cooked ice cold.

So if you are one of those modernist with a propane grill you need to adjust the temp to what works best for thin steaks. I am still stuck in the dark ages with my charcoal. Which I piled about 25 coals together and waited till I saw a nice ash.

Place the steaks directly over the coals till you get a good sear. Then move slightly to the side for a few minutes to cook. Flip the steaks and return to direct heat to sear. Move to the side and cover. Now you have an oven and the steak will slowly cook to desired doneness.

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Typically your steaks will be thicker on one end. I prefer this as my kids prefer varying degrees of donenes. By the time one end is medium rare tjw other is medium. Remember to remove the steaks BEFORE they get to where you like them as the rest for a few minutes before carving they will keep cooking.

Use your. Thumb to test doneness.
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Starting at the bottom is how a well done steak will feel. As you move further up towards the joint you will feel the softness if a rare steak. Remove from heat and cover about 5 minutes before carving. This keeps the juices from all running out. Be sure to slice thin strips against the grain.

Tonight I grilled up some rolls to get them warm and a little crusty.

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I hope you give it a try this summer.

ALMOND JOY ULTIMATE POPCORN

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I Remember the first time I had chocolate covered popcorn. I thought itwas a disgusting idea. But I gave it a try and boy was I wrong! Whenever I make it The Boy calls it Ultimate Popcorn and I rather like it. And because sometimes you feel like a nut, I came up with this.

INGREDIENTS
8 c Popped Popcorn
8 oz Melted Chocolate
1/2 c Almond
1/2 c Coconut

Line a cookie sheet with either wax paper, parchment paper or a silicone mat. Spread the popcorn out in a layer. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the popcorn and gently but quickly begin to toss it. Add the nuts and coconut and toss a little more. Allow to cool an hour till the chocolate is hard and eat.

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You can see by the photo I don’t drench it in the chocolate.  If you want every kernel totally covered you will need to double up on the chocolate.  Use whatever kind you like best, I used milk chocolate today.

S for the almoss I left them whole but slivered and chopped work too.

This time I used shredded coconut but flake definitely offers more pop.

Store in a Ziploc bag.

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Mow see if you can Headed it without singing “Almond Joy’s got nuts, Mounds don’t …..”

KEEPING ICE CREAM

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Growing up we had goats and that meant an ample supply of milk and cream. That of course was why we never bought ice cream. Homemade all the way baby!

When I got married and bought a carton the frozen gunk on top would drive me nuts. Then I saw a simple solution on TV one day and gave it a try. By George it worked and I have been doing it for 20 years.

You need 2 things. Ice cream (preferably dirt cheap)

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and Serane wrap.

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Simply rip off a piece and push it down onto the ice cream. Air is what causes that nasty gunk and the plastic wrap needs to completely cover the ice cream to keep it out.

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And that’s it, perfect ice cream every time.  Now I am going to get myself a scoop.

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day

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This time of year is when I buy my corn beef. It freezes well and the price can’t be beat. Some have definite preferences over flat versus point cut. The point tends to be cheaper and fattier. Easter is in March this year so I will be buying Ham pretty soon. I always stock up around holidays with those items that are on sale.

Christmas Light Storage

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Every year the Christmas decorations get pulled out and we think that THIS year we will be organized while putting them away. Of course by the time we put them away we are too exhausted to even think about it. That’s why now is a perfect time, before you start Spring cleaning!

I take no credit for this idea. I borrowed lights from a friend this year ans this is how they came. Wrapped neatly and organized, the only thing missing was a bow.

Start by cutting a piece of cardboard into the shape of a bone.  On each end cut a slit.

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Use a marker to label where those lights are to be hung.

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Using one of the slits to hold the end of the cord in place begin wrapping it around the length of the cardboard.

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When you are done it should look something like this.

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A fruit box works great to hold all the strands together for storage and when you start hanging them up again.  I suggest keeping the light clips and extension cords in the same box.

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I hope you find this helpful and that it makes the task of hanging lights next November a little less stressful.

Shrimp and Mushroom Risotto

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It sounds like such a fancy dish and is quite expensive to order in a restaurant. Yet risotto is not only very affordable to make it is simple as well. From start to finish it is ready in less than 30 minutes.

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INGREDIENTS
2 TB Butter
1 1/2 c Aborio Rice
3 c hot Chicken Broth
1 lb peeled and devined Shrimp
8 oz sliced Mushrooms
3 Green Onions chopped
1 TB parsley
1/2 c Parmesan Cheese
Johnny’s Seasoning

* One cup of water may be substituted for the broth.

Melt the butter in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Add the rice and saute for 3 minutes. The rice will slightly change color but pick up a nutty flavor.

Begin adding the hot broth in half cup increments. Stirring the rice until all the liquid is absorbed each time. Continue with this process until the rice is tender. You may not end up using all the liquid.

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Meanwhile, turn the oven onto 350 degrees.  Season the shrimp with the Johnny Seasoning, or salt if you prefer.  Spread them in a pan and place into the oven. Keep an eye on them and when they begin to turn pink add the sliced mushrooms and onions. Turn the oven up to 400 and continue cooking until the shrimp and veggies are done. The shrimp will be a rich orange and the mushrooms soft and brown.  Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the parsley.

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Once the rice is fully cooked add enough liquid to make a creamy sauce.

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  Add the shrimp and mushrooms. Sprinkle in the cheese and serve immediately.

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Total cost was less than $10. I hope risotto does not seem so intimidating and you will give it a try. Don’t be afraid to make it your own by substituting your favorite vegetables and meat, or leave out the meat altogether. What variations can you come up with?

Parsnips and Apples

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I remember the first time my mother fried up parsnips, I asked why the carrots were white. That night I fell in love with a new root vegetable. While tonight I pan fried them they can also be roasted in the oven.

INGREDIENTS
3 TB Butter
3 large Parsnips
1/4 c diced Red Onion
1 small peeled Green Apple that is diced
Salt

Melt the butter over medium heat and add the sliced parsnips. Begin with the larger pieces and add the rest in 5 minutes. Season with salt. Cook 5 minutes longer. Add the diced onions. Continue cooking until they are light brown and soft almost all the way through.  Now add the diced apples and cook 5 more minutes.

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I hope you give this winter veggie a try. As it becomes sweet when cooked most kids are pretty happy to eat it. Add in the apples and you have a side dish the family will love.

If you prefer to roast the parsnips,  toss them in canola oil and place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Roast at 400 degrees for 5 minutes.    Add the red onions and gently toss. Bake another 10 minutes and add the apples tossing them in. Roast another 5 minutes or all the parsnip are a dark brown.