Leftover Potatoes and Top Sirloin

The girlfriend’s mother got us some Omaha Steaks for Valentine’s Day – and I’ve really enjoyed using them.  Surprisingly very good for being frozen on arrival.  Made some sirloin and prepared some leftover potatoes.

I seared two top sirloin steaks in butter.  And just butter.  The only other seasoning I did was to apply freshly ground salt and pepper to the steaks before adding them to the pan.  Seared on medium, popped in the oven at 350 until the centers reached 125 degrees, then tented in foil to let the residual heat bring it up to medium rare (135).

I also put some leftover potatoes from Valentine’s day in the oven to eat with the steaks.  They were still good.

Lastly, I put a can of corn (drained) in a frying pan with a good two tablespoons of butter and heated it up, bordering on sauteeing.  Also added freshly ground salt and pepper.  Butter makes everything better.

Here are some pictures:

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dinner plate

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Valentine’s Day Dinner

So I decided I would cook for Valentine’s day, for several reasons.  Chief among them being I didn’t want to deal with crowds.  And because I could cook exactly what I wanted.  Okay, so chief among them being because I didn’t want to deal with crowds and I could cook what I wanted.  Oh, and because I found some really good recipes.  Okay, so chief among them being…

I made creamed spinach with shallots, (my first time using shallots – what a wonderful thing they are!  It’s like a mellow, mild onion) rosemary and garlic roasted potatoes, and a bourbon-marinated London broil.  Dessert was raspberries in a red wine syrup over a sort of homemade mascarpone cheese. (More on that below.)

Surprisingly, the sides were the best part of the meal.  I wish I would’ve made so, so much more creamed spinach…but when I was looking at the bunch of fresh spinach in the grocery store it looked like so much…and I knew we were having another side, the London broil, and dessert…but it really cooked down, and I would’ve loved to have been able to have another serving of it.  Alas, there was no more.

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Cornish Hens for the Super Bowl

While I was really, truly looking forward to watching Tom Brady cry, dinner made the entire night okay.  These cornish hens actually turned out pretty well.  Not that I was particularly invested either way…I could care less about the teams involved.  But I decided I wanted to make 2 cornish hens, so I did.  I used this recipe at Epicurious.com, but changed a few things…

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1. It was just my girlfriend and I, so I used 2 hens.
2. Instead of losing a bunch of heat pulling the pan out to baste, I just added more chicken broth periodically.  This also affected the gravy portion, see below.
3. I boiled the juices after taking the meat out while also adding some corn starch…this allowed me to get a little thicker of a gravy.  Next time I’m going to use more corn starch.

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Will definitely be cooking this again.  The slight lemon along with the rosemary and garlic really made this a wonderful meal.  And it wasn’t terribly hard to cook, either.

The Egg Test!

I decided I would test the non-stick seasoning that has been building up on my pan (this is my first cast-iron pan!).  What better way than with bacon and eggs?  I call it the egg test.

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I happened to have 3 slices of bacon, some bread and cheese, and 2 eggs sitting in the fridge.  Started by cooking the bacon to get a nice layer of grease built up in the pan.

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After the bacon was cooked, I put it on some paper towels to get a little less greasy.  Then I nervously cracked two eggs into the pan, awaiting the dreadful moment where it would immediately adhere to the surface and cause me to have to scour and reseason the pan, realizing my worst fears.

Continue reading The Egg Test!

Homemade Teriyaki is Easy!

Homemade teriyaki sauce is a lot simpler than I was expecting it.  I’ve made it 4 times so far, twice with beef and twice with chicken.

There are only 4 ingredients, in equal parts (I measure them with a shot glass which makes the perfect amount of sauce for one average sized package of stir fry beef or one serving of 2 chicken breasts):

Soy Sauce
Sake
Honey or Brown Sugar (more on this after the list)
Mirin

A few notes: Honey makes a lighter sauce, and brown sugar makes a darker sauce.  I’ve determined that honey is better for chicken and brown sugar for beef.

Mirin is a rice wine cooking sauce that can be found at an Asian market or at a relatively large supermarket, if they have a good international section.

Sake is great for cooking because you use two shot glasses…one for the meal and one for the cook.  Amounts for the cook are up to the cook.

To make this is simple.  Mix it together, and after browning your beef or cooking your cut up chicken, just pour it into the pan and let it boil off/reduce for a few minutes.  BAM you have a glaze.  Serve over rice for best results.

My favorite part is eating the rice that has the teriyaki sauce soaked into it.  Sweet and delicious.