Monday, July 4, 2011
Friday, June 17, 2011
Volcano ComboIngredients· 1 quart, good vanilla ice cream· 1 pint, Cognac· 1 pint, Dark Crème de Cacao· 2 quarts coffee, room temperatureMethodPut all in a big pitcher, allowing the ice cream to get soft and the liquids to get icy cold before serving. Serve in chimney glasses with long straws. Be sure to provide lounge chairs for all.
Saturday, January 8, 2011
Personally, I do not know if the hot toddy is a cure for anything, but it sure makes living with a cold a lot easier! This is my grandmama’s recipe and it works every time.
- Brew a pot of black tea adding a cinnamon stick, some cloves and a few whole cardamom seeds
- Pour a mug of it. Add a liberal dose of honey or brown sugar
- Add a slug (approximately 2 oz.) of rye whiskey
- Stir until the honey is not gloppy anymore, and finish with a squeeze of lemon juice (for the vitamin C)
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Eggs on Horseback RevisitedWith thanks to the late Robert A. Heinlein
2 filets mignon, cut 2” thick and butterflied4 eggs, poached, yolks runnyBearnaise (recipe follows)
1) Grill, broil or pan-roast the steaks to taste, but don’t go more than medium rare. Filets are wasted if cooked more well-done than that. If you are cooking for someone who wants their meat gray, get them a nice sirloin or flatiron steak instead and send the filet to me.
2) Gently balance two of the eggs on each of the steaks.
3) Enrobe the egg topped steaks with a generous blanket of sauce Bearnaise. Garnish with a sprinkling of chopped parsley.
1/2 pound, unsalted butter4 shallots, finely chopped2 tablespoons fresh tarragon leaves4 white peppercorns, crushed1/4 cup white wine vinegar1/3 cup dry white wine4 large egg yolks1/4 teaspoon saltScant pinch cayenne, if desiredAdditional tablespoon of finely chopped tarragon
Warm butter just to melting point.
Do a reduction of shallots, tarragon and peppercorns, vinegar and wine to about 1/4 cup. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into the top a double boiler. Whisk the yolks into the wine/vinegar reduction. Place over barely simmering water. (The water in the lower portion of the double boiler should not make contact with the upper portion of the pot.) Whisking constantly, watch until it starts to thicken – this is a pretty subtle change. Do not stop whisking and watch very carefully.
Turn off the heat and remove the top portion from the double boiler.
Begin drizzling the butter in while whisking. (It really helps to have a third arm or an assistant here.) Keep the hot water handy, and work on and off the heat. If the sauce looks as if it is about to break, take it off the heat and whisk aggressively to cool. A teaspoon of cold water may be added to facilitate cooling. When all the butter is in, season with salt, a tablespoon of chopped fresh tarragon and a bit of cayenne pepper.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
The Flat Iron Steak, aka the Top Blade Steak, is the end of the chuck. It was developed in university labs, which is incredibly cool to those of us food geeks who find the science of food as appealing as its nutritive and flavor qualities. The reason for laboratory development was because they took the genes of the best tasting. . . . OK, no, that's wrong.
The reason that it took teams in two major United States universities to develop the flat iron steak is because, sitting at the end of the Chuck where it does, it has a chunk of connective tissue in the middle of three pieces of succulently tender and flavorful beef that had to be navigated around. They took this garbage cut of meat and cut it in such a way that it got rid of the leathery connective tissue, leaving only the beautifully marbled, tender and delicious beef.
Locally, this is still a pretty cheap cut of beef, comparable to the Top Sirloin, but the flavor is incomparable. I have waited for years to try this cut, and now I want to try it in every way possible. When in Gardnerville, Nevada last time, at a little Basque restaurant, I had a garlic steak. They used a shell steak, but I think that I am going to try this with a nice thick Flat Iron.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
A long, long time ago there was a steakhouse on Auburn-Folsom Road between Folsom and Roseville called The Whispering Pines. I only remember it from my fairly early youth, but I loved it. It was dark and in the triple-digit temperatures of the deep summer months it was deliciously cool. They served great steaks, thick and dry-aged and slightly charred off the grill. They were delivered on metal plates that were nestled on Bakelite trays – the metal plates were heated in the kitchen so the steaks were still sizzling when they got to the table. They had decent sides of house-made scalloped potatoes and little gravy boats of some sort of sauce that was completely superfluous. They also served salads that were composed of iceberg lettuce, a cherry tomato and some shredded canned beets. None of that mattered: At the Whispering Pines, the steaks were the stars of the show.
The Whispering Pines was far from my parents' home, and it was a fairly rare treat when we went. It is long gone now, but we drive by its old location on a fairly regular basis. It is an empty office building now. It is easy to spot, as it is right next to the Whispering Pines trailer park, and, sadly, whenever we drive by my mouth starts watering.