Steak Oscar

Steak Oscar

Steak Oscar

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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This is one of those dishes that may seem a bit intimidating especially when you consider that Bearnaise is the sauce used to elevate it but it is actually very simple and the Bearnaise is really not that hard to make.

Cooks note: I used strip loins for this because I happened to find them on sale but any decent steak cut will do.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 4 Strip Loin steaks
  • 1 bag 31 – 40 Shrimp – tail off
  • 12 -15 Asparagus spears
  • 3 tablespoons minced Shallots
  • 2 large Egg Yolks
  • 2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons unsalted Butter
  • 2 tablespoons White  Wine Vinegar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh chopped Tarragon
  • 2 teaspoons Old Bay® seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons Granulated Garlic
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Putting it all together:

Bearnaise Sauce:

  1. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and a pinch of salt and pepper; stir to coat. Stir in vinegar, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until vinegar is evaporated, 3-4 minutes. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking shallots, stirring frequently, until tender and translucent, about 5 minutes longer. Transfer shallot reduction to a small bowl and let cool completely.
  2. Meanwhile, fill a blender with hot water to warm it; set aside. Melt remaining 1 cup butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until butter is foamy. Transfer butter to a measuring cup.
  3. Drain blender and dry well. Combine egg yolks, lemon juice, and 1 tablespoon water in warm, dry blender. Purée mixture until smooth. Remove lid insert. With blender running, slowly pour in hot butter in a thin stream of droplets, discarding milk solids at bottom of measuring cup. Continue blending until a smooth, creamy sauce forms, 2-3 minutes. Pour sauce into a medium bowl. Stir in shallot reduction and tarragon and season to taste with salt, pepper, and more lemon juice, if desired. This can be made 1 hour ahead of time. Cover and let sit at room temperature.

Steak, Shrimp and Asparagus:

  1. Preheat your grill to 375°.
  2. Season the steaks with salt and pepper and set aside.
  3. Prep the Asparagus by cutting off the woody, fibrous ends.
  4. Melt 1 teaspoon of butter in a saute pan and add the granulated garlic and Old Bay® mixing well. Add the shrimp and saute until pink.
  5. Put the steaks on the grill for 6 to 8 minutes a side for medium,
  6. Steam the asparagus for 5 minutes.
  7. Plate the steak and top with the asparagus, shrimp and warmed Bearnaise.
  8. Enjoy.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time……

                           Bon Appetit

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Fish Sandwich

 

Fish sandwich

Fish Sandwich

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Fish is one of those versatile ingredients that is so under utilized in my house and it shouldn’t be simply because it not only tastes good but is good for you and there are endless ways to prepare it.

This recipe is great for a quick and easy lunch and when complimented by a nice salad it hits all the right notes.

Cooks note: I use Basa (Vietnamese Catfish) because it is a firm white flesh fish that holds up well to various applications and is inexpensive but feel free to use whatever fish you like.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 4 Basa filets
  • 2 Eggs
  • sliced Tomatoes
  • Mayonnaise
  • 1 cup All Purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup Cornstarch
  • 3 teaspoons Old Bay® seasoning
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground Pepper
  • 4 soft Kaiser rolls
  • Canola Oil for frying

Putting it all together:

  1. In a non reactive bowl mix the flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper and Old Bay®.
  2. In a separate bowl mix the eggs together.
  3. Heat 2 inches of oil in a large deep pan.
  4. Dredge the fish in the flour, egg and flour and cook in the oil until golden brown on both sides.
  5. Remove the fish to drain on a paper towel.
  6. Split the kaisers and lightly toast the inside.
  7. Spread mayonnaise on the bottom bun topped with a tomato slice and the fish.
  8. Enjoy.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time…….

                            Bon Appetit 

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Pork and Pancetta Pasta

Pork and Pancetta Pasta

Pork and Pancetta Pasta

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Pasta is a staple of traditional Italian cuisine with the first reference dating to 1154 in Sicily so it’s no wonder there are more ways to prepare it than one can shake a stick at but what I have found over the years is that Italian restaurants really only do a tomato sauce or cream sauce with the pasta dishes they put out all the while ignoring other ways of serving it. So with that in mind I decided to do this pasta dish “naked” ( no not me… the pasta) meaning I didn’t use a sauce and it was a huge hit.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 2 tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 1 large package Compliments™ All Natural Fettucini
  • 2 pounds boneless Pork Loin – cut into bite sized pieces.
  • 12 ounces diced  Pancetta
  • 3 large Shallots – diced
  • 1 large Yellow pepper – diced
  • 1 large Red pepper – diced
  • 2 cups Baby Spinach
  • 3 Garlic cloves – fine dice
  • 2 Shallots – diced
  • 2 medium Tomatoes – diced
  • 2 teaspoons dried Basil
  • 2 teaspoons dried Oregano
  • Salt and Pepper to taste 

Putting it all together:

  1. Heat the oil in a large pan and saute the Pancetta until just brown.
  2. Remove the pancetta with a slotted spoon and add the pork to the same pan and brown all over.
  3. Add back the pancetta and remaining ingredients, cover and simmer until the pork is tender.
  4. While the pork is simmering bring a pot of salted water to a boil and add the fettuccine. Cook for about 5 minutes.
  5. Drain the pasta, plate and top with the pork and pancetta.

Cooks note: Fresh pasta cooks incredibly fast so keep an eye on it otherwise it will go mushy. 

There you have it another “Simple bust tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time…….

                            Bon Appetit

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Smoked Chicken Wings

Smoked Chicken Wings

Smoked Chicken Wings

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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When I retired from my career I decided I wanted to cook professionally and so I eventually found myself in a Chicken Wing joint as a line cook where I was responsible for cooking wings and a conservative estimate shows I cooked around 50 Tons of chicken wings in the 2 1/2 years I was there. Needless to say I really have a dislike for chicken wings and I don’t eat them. So how then, you may ask, did I come to do this recipe? I simply asked my wife and daughter what they wanted for Mother’s Day dinner and the first thing I heard was CHICKEN WINGS…. so here we are.

Of course I had to add my own spin to it and that also allows me to use my smoker.

Cooks note: The directions for cooking the wings are based on using a Smoker that has an offset fire box and uses charcoal and wood. For other types of smokers, electric or propane, follow the manufacturers instructions. 

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 4 pounds Chicken wings – 2 lbs Flats 2 pounds Drumsticks
  • 3 tablespoons Canola Oil
  • 2 tablespoons Smoked Paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground Coriander
  • 2 tablespoons Granulated Garlic
  • 2 tablespoons Granulated Onion
  • 1 teaspoon Season Salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground Pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Ancho Chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons Brown sugar
  • Wood chips for smoking – Hickory or Apple

Putting it all together:

  1. In a large bowl soak the wood chips for 30 minutes.
  2. Heat your smoker to 225°
  3. Toss the wings in the Canola oil and then in the dry rub.
  4. Place the wings in the smoker and add a handful or two of the soaked wood chips to the charcoal.
  5. Turn the wings half way through the cooking process and add more wood chips to the charcoal.
  6. The wings are finished when the internal temperature reaches 165°.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond”.

Until next time………

                           Bon Appetit

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Coffee Rubbed Striploin

Coffee Rubbed Striploin

Coffee Rubbed Striploin

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Sunday dinners with family are a time to gather together and enjoy good drink , good conversation and really good food which is why I chose this recipe for this family gathering.

The secret to any good recipe lies in the ingredients and for this one the ingredients in the dry rub make the difference.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list: 

  •  4 Striploin steaks 
  • 2 tablespoons Ancho chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons finely ground Coffee beans
  • 5 tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Smoked Paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried Oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground black Pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground Coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground Ginger
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher Salt

Putting it all together:

  1. Preheat the bbq to 450°
  2. In a medium non reactive bowl mix all the dry ingredients together.
  3. Thoroughly rub the steaks with the dry rub and place on the bbq for 9 minutes a side.
  4. Enjoy

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time…….

                           Bon Appetit 

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BBQ’D Sweet and Sour Chicken

BBQ'd chicken

BBQ'D Sweet and Sour Chicken

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Learning to cook for me has been a long but fascinating journey and I am happy to say that I am still learning which means that cooking still holds my interest and still has mysteries to figure out.

One of the mysteries it has taken me a while to figure out is how to BBQ chicken without burning the hell out of it and quite simply the solution to the “mystery” is to simply par boil the chicken to reduce the amount of grease the skin will produce thereby reducing the flair ups and the burnt chicken.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 4 Chicken legs
  • 4 Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs
  • 1/2 cup Rice Vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons Soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup Honey
  • 1/4 cup Ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons Granulate Garlic

Putting it all together:

  1. Par boil the chicken legs in a large pot for 7 minutes.
  2. Remove the legs to a sheet pan and dispose of the water.
  3. Heat the BBQ to 400° and place the legs bone side down for 10 minutes then turn over for another 10.
  4. While the chicken is cooking mix all the other ingredients together in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 6 minutes or until thickened.
  5. Brush the chicken with the sauce and turn over once the sauce has “glazed” the chicken and repeat.
  6. Remove and enjoy.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time………

                            Bon Appetit 

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Five Spice Fish

Fice Spice Fish

Five Spice Fish

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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The original recipe I found was under the title Hong Kong Fish and it intrigued me so much I had to look at it and from what I saw the main difference between our fish and Hong Kong Fish is the type of sauce it is served with. In Hong Kong it is usually served with a Tomato Sauce, Corn Sauce or Black Pepper Sauce but since I didn’t feel like making a sauce I simply left that part out.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 4 Basa filets
  • 1 cup Flour
  • 1/2 cup Cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons Chinese Five Spice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Ground Pepper
  • 2 large Eggs 
  • 2 teaspoons Water
  • Green Onion for garnish.
  • Canola oil for frying 

Putting it all together:

  1. Preheat the oil in a large pan.
  2. In a non reactive bowl mix all the dry ingredients together.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together the eggs and water.
  4. Dredge the filets in the egg mixture and then in the flour mix.
  5. Fry the filets in the oil until golden brown.
  6. Remove to papers towels to drain. and garnish with green onion
  7. Enjoy.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time……..

                            Bon Appetit 

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Coconut Cashew Rice

Coconut Cashew rice

Coconut Cashew Rice

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Rice is my usual go to for those occasions when I don’t want potatoes but need a tasty side dish to compliment the main ingredient in the meal.

Now if you simply Google “rice recipes” you will come up with approximately 60 million results so naturally a little thought is required to narrow down the results and not send you racing to the loony bin.

With this particular rice dish the Coconut and Cashew gives the dish a very unique flavour and anything else you add is gravy.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 2 cups Basmati rice
  • 1 1/2  cups Coconut milk
  • 2 cups Chicken Stock
  • 3 tablespoon Canola Oil
  • 3/4 cup Cashew pieces
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons Salt
  • 1 medium Spanish Onion – chopped
  • 1 medium Red Pepper – sliced
  • 1 medium Green Pepper – sliced
  • 3 Garlic cloves – chopped

Putting it all together:

  1. Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven and saute the onion for 2 minutes.
  2. Add in the rice and stir until well coated.
  3. Stir in the Coconut milk, Chicken stock salt and garlic.
  4. Bring to a boil then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. In the last five minutes add the peppers and cashews to the rice, re-cover and let sit off the heat.
  6. Fluff with a fork and serve.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time……..

                             Bon Appetit

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Sesame Ginger Chicken

Sesame Ginger Chicken

Sesame Ginger Chicken

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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I’m always on the look out for better chicken recipes and this is exactly what I was looking for and although I don’t really like Ginger there is not enough in this one to turn me off and since there were NO leftovers I would definitely say it was a hit.

Cooks note: The original recipe calls for cutting the chicken up into pieces however I found that leaving it whole produced a much better crispy skin.

Here is how we do this one.

Shopping list:

Chicken Marinade

  • 2 1/2 pounds boneless skinless Chicken thighs
  • 6 tablespoons Sesame oil
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Soya sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cracked black Pepper

Stir Fry

  • 1 cup Cornstarch
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 2 tablespoons minced Garlic
  • 2 tablespoons minced Ginger
  • 2 tablespoons Hoisin sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Oyster sauce
  • 3 tablespoons Soya sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Sambal
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Sweet Chili sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Hot Pepper oil
  • 2 teaspoons Lime juice
  • Black and White Sesame seeds for garnish
  • chopped Scallions for garnish

Putting it all together:

  1. In a large non reactive bowl mix together the marinade ingredients and add the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. While the chicken is marinating combine the remaining ingredients in a measuring cup, except the sesame seeds, scallions, vegetable oil and cornstarch, and set aside.
  3. Heat about 2 inches of oil in a large pan or a Wok.
  4. Remove the chicken from the marinade and discard the liquid. Evenly coat the chicken in cornstarch shaking off any excess.
  5. Fry the chicken in batches until golden brown and remove to paper towels to drain off the excess oil.
  6. Top with the sesame seeds and scallions and serve over hot rice.

There you have it another “Simple but tasty recipe for the grilling season and beyond.”

Until next time………

                            Bon Appetit 

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Burger Essentials

Burger essentials

Burger Essentials

The warmer weather is finally starting to appear and with that comes thoughts of flowers, the smell of fresh cut grass and of course….. BBQ’S. 

Now everyone has their favourite food to make on the BBQ and I’m no different but for those days that are really busy and I want something tasty my fall back is Burgers and as I have said before for every person who makes burgers from scratch there are different recipe ingredients but what is often overlooked are the utensils used to make the patties.

This then is my take on the three most important implements/utensils needed to make burgers from scratch.

First:  A good old fashioned Ice Cream Scoop. Over the years I have found that your normal everyday ice cream scoop holds an ideal 5 ounces of burger meat which means you don’t require a scale.

Second:  Patty Paper is one of those things that are generally only used in restaurants when making burgers however they are just as important to the home cook for the simple reason that the paper makes it easier to thaw and separate the patties come cooking time.

and……

Third:  A Patty Maker saves time and aids in forming patties of equal size and thickness which makes for more even cooking.

There you have it another “Simple but awesome tip from my kitchen to yours.”

Until next time………

                            Bon Appetit

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