Sunday, January 30, 2011

braised short ribs

So, it's cold outside.
Really really cold.
And with an old, 1940's house and little to no insulation, I need to heat this house with the smell of something wonderful in the oven.

These short ribs are super rich and decadent and just what I want to heat this house and fill it with that wonderful smell.

You know the smell I'm talking about.
Like Grandma's Sunday pot roast dinner kind of smell.
But this ain't your grandma's pot roast.
This is easily have-your-boss-over-for-dinner kind of gourmet but super easy.
Plus, you get that smell.

Braised Short Ribs
Serves 4-6.
4 pounds beef short ribs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup good red wine
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 cups beef stock
1 pound cooked pasta, any kind you like
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Place an oven rack in the lower 1/3 of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350*.
Season the ribs with salt and pepper. In a large heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. In batches, add the short ribs and brown on all sides, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the short ribs and set aside.

Add the onion and garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes (in their juices) and mustard to deglaze the pan.

Add the wine and the stock and bring the mixture to a boil.  Return the short ribs to the pot. Cover and place in the oven for 2 1/2 hours until the meat is fork-tender and falls easily from the bone.

Transfer the short ribs from the cooking liquid to a serving platter and keep warm under a tent of foil. Using a ladle, carefully transfer the cooking liquid to the bowl of a food processor or blender. Process until the mixture is smooth. Pour the sauce into a saucepan and keep warm over low heat. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.  Toss the sauce with the pasta. Sprinkle the pasta with Parmesan cheese and arrange a few short ribs on top.  Serve with something green!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

easy mac and cheese

Okay, so this sounds really odd but I think that a good mac and cheese has to have mustard in it.
Dry mustard.
Good quality mustard.

Weird, right?
I know.
But okay, I digress.
This is really really easy mac and cheese and it has great flavor due to the aforementioned mustard :)
So, just try it and don't forget the mustard.

Easy Mac and Cheese
Serves 6-8.
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup cottage cheese
2 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon dry mustard
Pinch cayenne
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pound sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 pound elbow pasta, uncooked

Preheat your oven to 375*.
Use one tablespoon butter to grease a 9" square baking pan.
In a blender, puree cottage cheese, milk, mustard, cayenne, and salt and pepper together. Reserve 1/4 cup grated cheese for topping. In a large bowl, combine remaining grated cheese, milk mixture and uncooked pasta. Pour into prepared pan, cover tightly with foil and bake 30 minutes.
Uncover pan, stir gently, sprinkle with reserved cheese and dot with remaining tablespoon butter. Bake, uncovered, 30 minutes more, until browned. Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

caesar salad + lemon chevre toasts

I'll be honest here.
While I do like caesar salad, and really enjoy this recipe for the dressing, this salad is mostly used to transport more of the chevre toasts to my mouth.
Doesn't everything seem healthier with a salad next to it?
And plus, since you are eating the said salad, doesn't it entitle you to more of the goat cheese slathered garlic bread sitting next to it?

I think so :)

Caesar Salad
Serves 2-4.
Did I mention that this dressing is raw-egg-free?  What can I say?  I was trying new things when I was pregnant....
Mixed greens for 2-4 people
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 hard boiled eggs
1 cup good-quality extra virgin olive oil

Put the greens in a large salad bowl and set aside.
Combine the next 7 ingredients in a blender and blend until very smooth.
While the blender is on, slowly add the olive oil until emulsified and creamy.

Pour over greens, toss and serve!

Lemon Chevre Toasts
1 stick butter
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
One loaf of French bread
8 ounces good quality Chevre goat cheese, at room temperature
1 lemon
Handful thyme sprigs (to taste)
Salt and pepper

Preheat your oven to 350*.
Melt the butter over medium low heat.  Add smashed garlic and let slowly sizzle and brown for about 7ish minutes.  You don't want the garlic to burn but you want the butter to really get infused with the garlicky taste.

Slice the French bread into about 1/2" slices and place on a large baking sheet.
Brush the bread with the garlic butter and toast in the oven for about 10 minutes, until lightly browned.  Remove to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, put the chevre in a medium bowl.  Zest the lemon into soft cheese.  Strip the thyme leaves off the stems straight into the mix.  (You can also chop the thyme, but I don't really find it that necessary...)

Season with salt and pepper and spread over the slightly warm toasts.  Serve immediately or at room temperature.

*If you leave them out for too long, the cheese will dry out and start to crack...still tastes perfectly fine but not so pretty...*

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

shrimp noodle bowl

This should be a Round 2 recipe from some grilled shrimp post that I've done.

But, oh wait, no such posts exists :/

I can't believe I've never done a simple grilled shrimp recipe....but alas, this is a great way to use leftover grilled shrimp.
(Because, you know, since I hate leftovers, and really what's worse than cold grilled shrimp?  Yuck.)

Add a few more ingredients (and really just use whatever veggies you've got in the fridge!) and voila!  Dinner is served in under 20 :)

Shrimp Noodle Bowl
Serves 4ish, but depends on how many leftover shrimp you've got
3 limes, juiced
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon dry sherry
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon siriachi sauce (or more to taste!)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 cup thinly sliced or shaved carrots
1 cup thinly sliced mushrooms, any kind will work
1 cup thinly sliced asparagus
12 ounces leftover grilled shrimp, peeled and deveined
4 cups hot cooked cellophane noodles (use directions on box)
1 cup sliced scallions (optional)
1 cup chopped cilantro (optional)
Chopped roasted peanuts (optional)

In a small bowl, combine lime juice, broth, teriyaki sauce, brown sugar, sherry, garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes and siriachi sauce.  Mix well and set aside.

In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until hot.
Add carrots, mushrooms, and asparagus and saute for about five minutes.

Add shrimp and reserved broth mixture.  Saute until shrimp are heated through.

Add noodles and toss.
Serve in individual bowls and top with scallions, cilantro, and peanuts, if desired. 

Friday, January 14, 2011

asian pork roast

My husband loves roasts.

But I almost always make my roasts in a Mediterranean style.
As seen here.

But, I thought I'd try something a little different this time.
And, I have to admit, I mostly tried this because I was going to use the leftovers for a Asian-inspired broccoli stir-fry.
And then we ate it all.
I was a little skeptical at first.  I mean, you are pouring a thick, black, tar-like substance all over some great looking pork.
But, trust me, it'll be worth it!

Asian Pork Roast
Serves a ton!

1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 2-inch piece of ginger, grated
3 tablespoons Srirachi sauce
1 6-pound pork Boston Butt roast
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 300*.
Combine the first seven ingredients in a bowl.
Season the roast with salt and pepper (go easy on the salt....the soy sauce will provide a lot of the saltiness) and sear in a large roasting pan or Dutch oven, until golden brown on all sides.
Pour the sauce over the roast and cover.  Braise for 3-6 hours, until falling off the bone.
Remove, shred, and serve!  Enjoy!

Monday, January 10, 2011

roasted beet and apple salad

I love winter salads.
In the midst of super heavy dishes like roasts and potatoes and pasta and creamy soups, sometimes you just gotta have a salad.
And winter salads are just so interesting.

Have I ever told you what a pet peeve I have with salads?
I hate hate boring salads.
I hate lettuce and carrots and tomatoes and cucumbers and dressing.
But a winter salad almost always has something interesting to it.

And this one doesn't disappoint!
Hearty roasted beets, nutty walnuts, and crisp apples....yum!
Go try it!

Roasted Beet and Apple Salad
Serves 4.
Do we really need a recipe here?
Go get a few beets....

Roast, slice and set aside.
(Incidentally, that link directs you to another wonderful winter-ish salad.)

Grab a few crispy apples...

Thinly wedge and set aside.

One red onion...

Paper thin slices please!

And walnuts, must have the walnuts...

Lay out all pretty-like on a plate and drizzle with your favorite vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper! 
(I suggest a white balsamic for more earthiness...)

Thursday, January 6, 2011


I have no idea what Deb is talking about when she says "bretzel rolls". 
I don't know what a pretzel roll is either.
But, the idea of combining one of those huge, soft pretzels and a dinner roll was just too much and I had to try it.
And I'm glad I did.
These are a little labor-intensive but they are, by far, the best recipe I've tried all year.
And that's saying alot, considering that I attempt to try a new recipe everyday, at least.

They are like a dinner roll-shaped soft pretzel that you slice open and smother with butter.

Or, in my opinion, just another meal to serve soft pretzels with.

Makes 8.
Thanks again, Deb!
2 3/4 cups bread flour
1 envelope yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (about) hot water (125* to 130*)
8 cups water
1/4 cup baking soda
2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg white, beaten
Coarse salt

Combine bread flour, yeast, one teaspoon salt and one teaspoon sugar in food processor and blend.

With machine running, gradually pour hot water through feed tube, adding enough water to form smooth elastic dough. Process one minute to knead. Grease medium bowl. Add dough to bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap, then towel; let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about an hour.

Flour baking sheet, or clear area of counter. Punch dough down and knead on lightly floured surface until smooth. Divide into 8 pieces. Form each dough piece into ball. Place dough balls on prepared surface, flattening each slightly. Using serrated knife, cut X in top center of each dough ball. *I didn't have a sharp enough serrated knife at my parents' house to do this.  By all means, it makes a prettier roll and helps with the rising.*  Cover with towel and let dough balls rise until almost doubled in volume, about 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375*. Grease another baking sheet and sprinkle with cornmeal. Bring 8 cups water to boil in large saucepan. Add baking soda and 2 tablespoons sugar (water will foam up). Add 4 rolls and cook 30 seconds per side. Using slotted spoon, transfer rolls to prepared sheet, arranging X side up. Repeat with remaining rolls.

*Sorry for the terrible picture!  But I wanted to show you...just drop them right on in there!*

Brush rolls with egg white glaze. Sprinkle rolls generously with coarse salt.

Bake rolls until brown, about 25 minutes. Transfer to racks and cool 10 minutes. Serve rolls warm or room temperature and with lots of butter!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...