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

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

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

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 

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

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 

Hash

 

Breakfast hash

Hash

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Was out of town visiting friends for the weekend when the Canadian weather decided it was going to dump a surprise on us….. Freezing Rain. Now for those of you who are not familiar with this phenomenon it simply means that the rain freezes on the ground and turns everything into a skating rink thereby making travel of any kind rather treacherous but it also means that if you have not made it to the grocery store you could be limited to meal ideas and since hash is simply a base of potatoes and onions together with whatever else you want to add it is a quick and easy solution to breakfast or dinner.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • Yukon Gold potatoes – diced
  • 1 small Yellow Onion – diced
  • 1 small Yellow Pepper – diced
  • 1 small Red Pepper – Diced
  • 4 large Eggs
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Granulated Garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Seasoned Salt
  • Fresh ground Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Canola Oil
  • Parsley for garnish

Putting it all together: 

  1. In a medium pot of water par boil the potatoes until just fork tender, about 10 mins. Drain and set aside.
  2. Heat the oil in a fry pan and add the onions and peppers and cook for 3 mins. Add the potatoes and mix well.
  3. Add in the seasonings and Worcestershire and cook for about 5 mins more turning it over once.
  4. Top with the over easy eggs, garnish with the parsley and enjoy.

Cooks note: There is an old line cooks trick for making over easy eggs. Once the eggs have been cracked in the pan or on the flat top cover them with a pot lid until cooked.

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

Until next time…….

                           Bon Appetit 

Beef and Lentil Stew

Beef and Lentil Stew

 

Beef and Lentil Stew

  • Servings: 6 - 8
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Cold season has hit my household and it looks like everyone, save yours truly, has caught one but it is entirely possible, if not probable, that I will sooner or later catch one. Until that time I will continue to look after my guys and so with that in mind I have made them some comfort food that will hopefully help them feel a little better.

Now I have “billed” this one as a stew however from what I can see the only difference between a soup and a stew is the thickness of the broth, except in the case of a Chowder which is thick anyways so if you wanted to make this a soup just thin out the broth.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping List:

  • 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds Sirloin Steak  Tails – cut into bite sized chunks
  • 3 Celery stalks- chopped
  • 2 Carrots – peeled and chopped
  • 1 Yellow Onion – diced
  • 3 small Leeks, whites only – chopped
  • 6 cups Beef broth
  • 1 28 ounce can Diced Tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons Oregano
  • 4 teaspoons Granulated Garlic
  • 2 cups Lentils
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Putting it all together:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Season the beef with salt and pepper and brown in batches removing to a separate bowl.
  3. Add the onion and saute until translucent.
  4. Add back the beef and the remaining ingredients bringing to a boil. Cover and simmer for 45 to 60 minutes.
  5. Adjust the seasoning and enjoy.

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

Until next time…….

                            Bon Appetit

Sausage and Peppers Sandwich

Sausage and Pepper Sandwich

Sausage and Peppers Sandwich

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Quick and easy lunches and dinners can sometimes be elusive simply because we don’t have that much time to think about it. This particular recipe comes in very handy for just those occasions as there are not that many ingredients and the time from start to finish is short.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 1 package of six Italian sausage
  • 6 slices Provolone cheese
  • 6 Panini buns
  • 2 medium Red Pepper – sliced
  • 2 medium Green pepper – sliced
  • 2 medium yellow Onions – sliced
  • 2 tablespoons dried  Oregano
  • 2 tablespoons dried Basil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Putting it all together:

  1. In a large pot of water par boil the sausage until just firm.
  2. In a large saute pan saute the peppers and onions until just soft and add the herbs and salt and pepper
  3. Slice the peppers down the middle and flatten.
  4. Place the peppers in a large frying pan and top with some of the onion and pepper mix. Top with the Provolone and cover with a pot lid until the cheese has melted.
  5. While the cheese is melting lightly toast the panini buns.
  6. Place the sausage and peppers in the bun, slice on the bias and enjoy.

Cooks note:  Par boiling the sausage will make it easier to slice them down the middle and will stop them from falling apart.

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

Until next time……..

                           Bon Appetit

Surf N Turf

Surf N Turf

Surf N Turf

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Surf N Turf is one of those menu items that usually means an 8 – 10 ounce N Y Strip and a 8 ounce Lobster tail that comes with a price tag that crashes the $50.00 mark but it also means most working class people can’t afford it and that includes me so I came up with an alternative in this cost efficient version….. 4 people for less than $50.00.

Cooks note: The skewers are best when done on a grill however if you don’t have one or the weather won’t let you then the oven is perfectly fine.

Here’s how we do this one.

Shopping list:

  • 2 1/2 pounds Sirloin Steak tails – cubed into bite sized pieces.
  • 1 package 31 – 40 Shrimp – peeled, deveigned and tail off.
  • 3 tablespoons Garlic butter
  • 1/4 cup Soya sauce
  • 1/4 Fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Sambal
  • 1/8 cup Oyster sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Sugar
  • 4 Scallions – rough chopped for garnish
  • 12 Bamboo skewers 

Putting it all together:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°
  2. Place the steak pieces into a large non reactive bowl. Mix together the soya sauce, fish sauce, Sambal, oyster sauce and sugar and pour over the steak pieces. Cover and refrigerate.
  3. Soak the skewers for at least 30 mins before using so they don’t burn.
  4. Thread the steak on the skewers and place on a sheet tray. Put in the oven for 20 minutes, turning half way.
  5. While the skewers are cooking quick fry the shrimp in the garlic butter until pink.
  6. Serve as an appetizer or as the main for your favourite side dish.

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

Until next time……..

                           Bon Appetit