Thursday, April 29, 2010

Bison have short ribs?

after browning in dutch oven...dusted with flour and seasoning first
Pass sauce through sieve and de-fat.
The short ribs were covered and then braised in this wine (for Lori) and beef stock for 3 hours on 325 degrees.
This sauce was soooooo good. Added the meat back in and threw in some cooked green beans.


I made grass fed bison short ribs and served them over jasmine white and brown rice. They were delicious and the sauce was decadent. I thickened the sauce with a bit of cold water and potato starch...shaken in a jar.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Just Stuff I Like

Line caught preserved wild salmon courtesy of my DIL's Aunt and Uncle!
Stanley lays on my suitcase..."don't leave again please."
The new cat loves an old bag..and chasing Stan out of the bedroom window.
Best tomatoes....well, 'cept for REAL San Marzano from Italy.
My Azaleas
This bumper sticker
Artichokes...freshly steamed
Buddy...not wanting to sit still for a photo
Elaina and I... the summer we had the pig roast.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sundays with Marlena Spieler-The Absolute Best Soup I've Ever Eaten

Fragrant Beetroot Vegetable Soup

Click to enlarge order to smell it of course!

This soup is one of the best things I've ever tasted. It involves some steps and work but let me tell worth it! I took lots of pictures too. Here goes:

Ingredients for the soup: serves 6 - 8

1 tsp canola oil (she used veggie oil)
1/2 finely chopped medium-sized onion
5 minced garlic cloves
1 carrot, medium dice
2 medium zucchini, med dice
1/2 celery stalk, finely diced
4 cardamom pods..throw em in whole (you can take them later....or not)
1/2 tsp of curry powder
2 med. beets, roasted-peeled-chopped med and save juice (you can buy vacuum packed beetroots)
5 cups of chicken stock (or veggie stock)
1 14oz. can of good chopped tomatoes
4 tablespoons of chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon sugar
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar (could use rice vinegar) upon serving

Put the oil in the pot you'll make the soup in and have heat on med high..throw in the onions until they get soft, then throw in HALF of the garlic but don't let it burn. Throw in all of the veggies EXCEPT the beets. Stir and let them meld together but not until they are limp. Nobody likes a limp anything. Go ahead and throw in the spices too. After a few minutes pour in the broth, one chopped beet, canned tomatoes, fresh cilantro and the sugar. Bring to the boil then reduce for about 20 minutes. After, toss in the remaining chopped beets/and juice and remainder of garlic. Set may have to re-heat to serve.

Ingredients for the Ginger/Cilantro condiment: ( I LOVE THIS STUFF)

3 -4 garlic cloves chopped roughly (goes in food processor so whatever)
About 1 - 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh ginger...peel first
1-4 mild fresh chilies (I used one large poblano and 1/2 jalapeno, seed removed)
a large handful of fresh roughly chopped cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
extra virgin olive oil (slowly pour in as processor is on until a paste forms)

[you can spread this on a sandwich, serve with "meatballs", make pasta and throw some in there while the pasta is hot with a little more olive oil and sprinkle cilantro or parsley over the top, dip pita in it, or serve over dumplings]

Put the garlic, chillies, and ginger in the food processor and give it a whirl till blended. Add the cilantro, vinegar, salt and then the oil and whirl around till it is a paste-like consistency. Take it out and set aside. Wash the food processsor cause you are using it could let your dog or cat lick it clean..if they like spicy. No...don't do that.

Be sure to check out Eileen's and Shankari's offerings from Jewish Cooking by Marlena.

{yes, this is something I already made way back when....but it took so long, decided I could post it twice. besides, it is just THAT good. I did leave out the lamb dumplings this go round}

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Kira is the Pie'd Piper

This weeks offering from Kira O'Donnell was Jumbleberry Pie. Look at those layers.
It's a star for sure! My in-laws picked it up at Corti Bros. so they got half!
And it is a taste of heaven on a, even better! Kudos to Kira O'Donnell.
Here is a lovely article about Kira in an archived Appetizers.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Fearless Writing!

Crescent Dragonwagon and my workshop friends. My son offered to come and take a few photos- free of charge. Thanks Mike! Check out his website. He didn't have much time so he only took 8 frames...but I liked them all very much. (got my hair all purdy before I made the trip and then got up late and didn't have time to get all "done up". Oh well).

This workshop..well, it was a play and work. Brilliantly taught. I met some extraordinary writers in the past couple of who truly didn't have a clue how very outstanding she is! It wasn't me. :) I am working on it though...and I just have to keep writing. Thank you Crescent for keeping it REAL. of the very best decisions I've ever made in my life was to do this thing. As Ms. Dragonwagon says, "Nothing is wasted on the writer."

BTW...Linda warned me about hermit crabs and sleeping naked under the ghost hotel in Belize!

P.S. My granddaughter is taking me to her pre-school for show and tell I best get cleaned up. It takes me longer to paint the barn these days.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sundays with Marlena Spieler-Kreplach

I bought the 'already made square wraps' in the Asian section of the market. So shoot me. The filling is mushroom and monterey jack cheese. I used chives for garnish.

Jews often eat Kreplach to celebrate Purim. One explanation comes from Alfred J. Kolatch's The Jewish Book of Why. Kolatch writes that the kreplach's triangular shape symbolizes the three Jewish patriarch (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob). And it was from her antecedents that Esther derived the strength she needed to save the Jews from annihilation in Persia.

Here is a Kreplach recipe I found online. It is close to Marlena's. I am in Portland, and my Jewish Cooking book is back on my table in Sacramento! oooops. Luckily I made this recipe on the 3rd, so I had the photos! It really was delicious and comforting.

DOUGH: (if you choose to make it)
  • 1 ¾ flour
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • 3 Tbsp. Oil
  • 1 cup ground cooked beef or chicken
  • 1 small onion, grated
  • 1 tsp. salt

DOUGH: in a large bowl combine dough ingredients together. Knead and roll out thin on floured board. Cut into 3-inch squares or circles.

FILLING: in a small bowl mix filling ingredients well. See Kreplach illustrated for filling and folding. Kreplach can now be either boiled and served in soup or sauted in oil. You just fold them over into a triangle after filling..make sure to brush water or egg wash on outer edges and press to seal.

TO BOIL: Place in boiling salted water. Don't boil too hard! Cook approximately 20 minutes until kreplach float to top. (mine took about 10 minutes due to my filling)

TO SAUTE: Heat oil over medium flame in 10-inch skillet. Saute boiled kreplach until golden brown on both sides.

NOTE: Dough will roll out more easily after being wrapped in a damp cloth for one hour.

YIELDS: 18 Kreplach

Be sure to check out Eileen and Shankari's offerings from Jewish Cooking!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Pazole Rojo...muy bien!

Didn't have radishes...but the bean sprouts added nice cool crunchiness
Before the sambal olek and the cilantro
Stir it up and enjoy!

Recipe from Epicurious
  • 1 large head garlic
  • 12 cups water
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 4 pounds country-style pork ribs
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (preferably Mexican), crumbled
  • 2 ounces dried New Mexico red chiles
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling-hot water
  • 1/4 large white onion
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • two 30-ounce cans white hominy (preferably Bush's Best)
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • about 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Grass Fed Bison's what's for dinner!

It was tender and very flavorful! Hardly any braised it low and slow.

That would be garlic that you see in the center....
Some Pappy's Rub prior to adding garlic, rolling and tying.
This bison was fantastico....try it some time! Wild Idea, eh? I bought mine from South Dakota...and got it fast!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Diner's Journal by Nick Fox of NYT--a favorite site

Q. and A. on Food Safety with Michael Moss

Michael Moss

Michael Moss, who won the Pulitzer Prize on Tuesday for his reporting on contaminated hamburger and gaps in federal oversight of food safety, will be taking questions from readers on Diner’s Journal this week.

Michael used confidential corporate and government records to tell the story of the single hamburger that infected a 23-year-old woman with E. coli and left her paralyzed. What went into that burger were low-grade beef trimmings, some treated with ammonia. He found that some slaughterhouses actually refuse to sell meat to ground beef producers unless they agree not to test for E. coli. His article helped lead to wider testing in the industry.

He also reported about a deadly salmonella outbreak traced to a peanut plant in rural Georgia and discovered that peanut producers do not have to tell government officials when they find salmonella and food manufacturers that use peanuts do not test them for the pathogen.

Michael has been an investigative reporter with The New York Times since 2000 and has twice previously been a Pulitzer finalist.

I often go over to see what Nick is writing about...or anyone else at Diner's Journal. I often learn a lot!!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sundays with Marlena Spieler-Kasha Varnishkes

I cooked up a storm last weekend...and this classic Ashkenazi dish of buckwheat (Kasha) made us very happy. I love cooking and blogging through Marlena's book because I am always surprised by a fond food memory....Kasha Varnishke is no exception! The Kasha I bought is wheat and gluten free...and vegan/vegetarian!

Serves 4 - 6

5 sliced mushrooms or 1/2 of a portabello mushroom chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
1 and 1/8 cups of boiling water or veggie stock (I used veggie stock)
3 TBS veggie oil
2 med. onions, thinly sliced
1 and 1/2 cups Kasha or buckwheat ( used medium coarse)
1/2 bag of pasta bows
salt and ground black pepper to taste

1. Heat the oil in a pan on med then add the sliced onions. You want them to get very golden..almost crispy but not burned. Drain on paper towel or clean kitchen towel.

2. Add the sliced mushrooms to the same pan and saute for a few minutes. Return onions to the pan and remove from heat...set aside.

3. Toast the kasha in a large heavy pan on high heat for about 2 minutes..stirring the entire time. Reduce heat and stir in the boiling stock and blend. Put lid on and let it cook for about 10 minutes or until liquid has been absorbed completely.

4. While that is cooking, cook the pasta in a pot of salted water..about 4 tsp. of salt and drain when it is just tender or el dente.

5. Toss the onions (reserving some for garnish on top), mushrooms, and pasta into the cooked kasha. Stir and serve hot. It would be great with some Pecorino cheese, if you are eating cheese.

Our project of cooking through Jewish Cooking will be coming to and end by mid-June I am thinking...maybe before that. Be sure and check out my blogger buddies offerings from the book this week. Eileen and Just the Two of Us and Shankari at Sacramento Spice.

Wondering if I am going to plow through another cookbook...not sure yet. I feel sad just thinking about this project ending.