Saturday, April 24, 2010

why not? it's friday!

i had never heard of shakshuka before but smitten kitchen sure made it look good. so good in fact that i thought, "what the heck? it's friday night - i'll give it a whirl!"

i had everything on hand so after a thrilling happy hour at laundry 101 (stupid busted ass washer. at least i could enjoy a stone levitation ale while i washed, dried and folded.) i headed home to take on the shakshuka.

i started off with some jalapenos and onions.

while those were cooking i sliced up some garlic cloves and sipped on some fat bastard pinot noir.

once the onions were soft and brown i added the garlic along with some cumin, paprika and a lil' crushed red pepper.

i squished up the whole tomatoes and added them to the mix. i let this simmer for about 30 minutes or so and then added the eggs. i covered the pot and the eggs cooked for just about 5 minutes.

i didn't do very well adding the eggs. you're supposed to spread them out on the surface and i kinda just plopped mine in. lesson learned here. next time, greater surface area with the eggs.

i served this with some chopped parsley and feta cheese and some warm, crusty french bread for dipping. mmm. delicious. and something totally new to me. it's in the arsenal!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

what would i want to eat
if i had just risen from the dead?

for me, nothing says "welcome back jesus!" like spareribs.

for mike's family's easter dinner i decided to take some spareribs in addition to the hundreds of sauerkraut balls i made with his mom, aunt and cousin.

i brushed some bbq sauce on the ribs and then rubbed 'em down with some cayenne, brown sugar and spices.

i put the ribs on wire baking racks on a foil lined cookie sheets.

these babies slow cooked in a 300 degree oven for like 4 hours. maybe 5.

happy easter jesus! welcome back!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

french fries!

real, homemade french fries are sooooo good. so bad for you though. and they're also a bit of work and messy. i make oven fries quite a bit but sometimes you just need fries. real fries. the other night we needed real fries.

i sliced up two large russet potatoes (skins on) and then soaked the fries in a bowl of cold water for about 10 minutes to suck out some of the starch. while those were soaking i put some canola oil in my single-woman's dutch oven and heated it over medium low heat to about 250 degrees.

i drained the potatoes on a towel and dried them. once the oil was ready i fried them in batches for about ten minutes. you don't want to cook them through at this point. the key to good fries is frying 'em twice. after the first fry drain them on a wire rack over a cookie sheet.

while they're draining crank up the heat to medium high and bring the oil up to about 350 degrees.

once the oil is ready, fry them in batches until they are nice and golden brown and drain them on your wire rack.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

spring (and the smell of meat) is in the air!

the perfect accompaniment to sunshine is the scent of searing meat wafting through the air. mmm...steaks.

i seasoned these ribeyes with some salt and pepper and while they were coming up to room temperature i started on my kale.

kale is probably my very favorite green. well, maybe collard greens but kale is a close second. i use it in soups a lot. i like to roast it and i really, really like to braise it.

i started with some shallots in a lil' butter and canola oil.

then i tore up the kale and threw that in and tossed it with the shallots.

after just a minute or so i added about a 1/4 cup veggie stock and some salt and pepper and red pepper flakes. this braised for about 20 minutes or so.

the steaks went on the grill for just about 5 minutes per side.


i let these rest while the kale finished braising and the potato in the microwave finished baking. we sat out on the front porch to enjoy this spring feast!