French Toast

french toast

All this week I have wanted to make French Toast for breakfast. I have not made it in a while so I needed a quick refresher on the recipe. After looking up a few basic recipes I put together parts that I liked and started cooking. Cooking the toast in the pan then finishing it in the oven made sure the French Toast was warmed all the way through. Enjoy this simple recipe for breakfast sometime!

French Toast

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Chicken with Red Pepper Coulis

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Last night I decided to experiment with a red pepper sauce. I ended up serving it over chicken, however, it would also work well as a spread on a sandwich or with beef. The sauce takes about 45 minutes too make, the length of the cooking time allows for the sauce to develop a very sweet and smokey flavor. It is very important to constantly taste this sauce as you make it and adjust the salt level as you go, it can turn out quite bland if you do not season throughout the cooking process. If you do not have sherry vinegar you can always substitute white wine vinegar. You will find the the recipe for the sauce below. Enjoy!

Red Pepper Coulis

Cooking Class Week 6: Souffles

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Week 6 was bar far the toughest week of the cooking classes. I had always wanted to attempt to make a souffle but was always intimidated by the process. Our chef broke down each step from the creation of the base, the whipping of the egg white, and the folding over of the two. After the class I was very excited to try to make a souffle for Easter.

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I chose to make a basic ham and cheese souffle in the class. Unfortunately I was unable to take pictures throughout the cooking process but I will give a few of the tips I learned. On Sunday I will post step by step pictures for the next souffle I make. The hardest part of making the souffle was whipping the egg whites. It is quite exhausting and as delicate as souffles are they are rough on the cook. An important tip before you whip the egg whites, add a pich of salt and 1 tsp cream of tartar for every 8 egg whites. These ingredients will help the eggs fluff up and not become too bubbly. It is also important to line your ramekins with something to allow the souffle to grip something as it climbs up the wall. For this souffles I used butter and Parmesan cheese. If I were making a sweet souffle I would have used sugar. The final tip came when we were mixing the base with the egg whites. During this step you want to keep folding the base over the whites until the mixture looks faintly streaky, do not stir the two together.

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You will probably be seeing a few souffle attempts in the coming weeks because they are fun, challenging, and rewarding to make. Keep checking the blog out to see how it goes.

 

Smoky Poblano Mussels

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I have wanted to make a dish with mussels for the longest time. One of my future culinary goals is to perfect my own recipe for muscles marinara but I’m still working on developing a sauce that has the right mix of flavor and heat. In the meantime I wanted to make something just to get some practice with cooking mussels. I found a very simple recipe for muscles in a pablano pepper broth in Cooking light magazine and adapted to suit my tastes.

On important step in this recipe is to combine the ingredients for the broth and simmer then for 8-10 minutes before adding the muscles.

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This allows for the flavor of the sauce to develop and become more complex. After cooking the muscles you remove them from the pot and again reduce the broth until there is about 1 cup left then you pour it over the muscles. This recipe is very simple and is a great dish to try if you want to experiment with mussels.

Smokey Pablano Mussels

Stout Macaroni and Cheese

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For Some reason I have been experimenting with cooking with beer a lot recently. I wanted to make mac and cheese and saw a recipe that used hot turkey sausage and Guinness in mac and cheese and adapted some of what they did for this dish. A warning in advance, while this recipe is delicious it does not taste like your traditional mac and cheese. Depending on how hot the sausage is that you use it could have some heat to it. Also the stout gives this dish a very distinctive finish. I will walk you through the recipe in this post, you can find the full recipe by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page.

Heat a large saucepan over high heat, add oil and swirl to coat pan then reduce heat to medium. Remove casings sausages and add sausage and onion to pan. Cook for 6 min, stirring to crumble up sausage.

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Add flour, salt, and pepper. Stir and cook for an additional minute.

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Add beer and bring to a boil. Cook mixture for 3 min until thick and bubbly, stirring continuously.

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Remove from heat and add cheddar, Velveeta, and milk; stir until smooth. Then add pasta and mix in.

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Divide mixture evenly among 4 ceramic gratin dishes sprinkle with panko bread crumbs and bake at 450 for 10 min. You could also put mac and cheese in a casserole dish and serve family style, timing will remain the same. Enjoy and find the full recipe below.

Stout Macaroni and Cheese

Asian Beef Rolls

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I found a recipe similar to this in Cooking Light Magazine, I tweaked it a little but it still stays true to the original. This recipe is a bit tedious to prep but very simple to cook.

To put rolls together place 1 steak slice on a cutting board and place 3 pieces of green onion and 3 pieces of red pepper on steak then roll. Place completed beef rolls on baking sheet.

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Then coat grill pan with cooking spray then heat pan over medium-high heat. Place beef rolls in pan, seem side down and cook for 3 min. Then turn and cook for an additional 3 minutes. While beef rolls are cooking bring reserved marinade and remaining rice wine vinegar to a boil and reduce by about half. pour sauce over rolls then serve.

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This recipe is great to make for game day. They are bite size and offer an alternative to wings and a six foot hoagie. For full recipe see the link below, Enjoy!

Asian Beef Rolls

 

Poached Shrimp in Old Bay Butter

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This shrimp recipe is very simple and very quick to prepare and makes for a great appetizer. You can also use the Old Bay Butter to toss steamed crabs in before you serve them.

To Poach the shrimp you combine water, wine, pickling spice, garlic, and parsley in a pot then bring mixture to a boil. The measurements for each ingredient is going to depend on the size of the pot you are using. I just eyeballed everything until it looked right. Let the mixture boil for 4-5 mins to allow the flavors to develop. (see picture below)

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After mixture has boiled remove pot from heat and add shrimp. Poach the shrimp for ~ 5 min until the shrimp are pink and firm. Then remove the shrimp from the poaching liquid and set aside (See pictures below)

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Next melt butter in a small sauce pan. After butter melts add sherry and Old Bay. Simmer for 30 seconds to cook off alcohol in sherry. Add shrimp and coat with butter sauce then serve and enjoy. The shrimp should be lightly coated with the Old Bay Butter, not soaked in it. This dish is very quick and simple and a fun alternative to traditional steamed shrimp. To see a full list of ingredients and approximate measurement follow the link to the recipe page. Enjoy!

Poached Shrimp in Old Bay Butter

Chicken with Spicy Ginger Soy Reduction

Asian chicken

I recently experimented with creating an Asian inspired sauce for chicken. I was surprised at how this sauce turned out, reducing the soy sauce brings develops a very savory flavor in this sauce and the addition of the garlic chili sauce lends a nice heat. The only downside to this sauce is that it is a bit thin, to fix this you need to add some flour to bring it to your desired consistency. You can serve this dish with Spicy Ginger Noodles and snow or snap peas.

Chicken with Spicy Ginger Soy Reduction

Spicy Ginger Noodles

Canada Trip Recap Part 2: The Keg Steakhouse and Bar

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Our first night in Toronto we stopped for a late dinner at the York Street location of The Keg Steakhouse and Bar. The Keg was your typical higher end steak house and the food was on the same level as a Ruth’s Chris or KC Prime. I ordered the baseball ribeye, my choice was highly influenced by the World Baseball Classic being on one of the televisions. The steak was cooked to perfection and tasted great. What really set The Keg apart for me was the service. We told our server Lisa that this was our first time in Toronto and had just arrived in the city earlier that evening. We asked her to recommend a few places for us to visit and at the end of our dinner she brought out a list of bars, clubs, and other restaurants that she felt we should visit. We made use of this list throughout our stay in Toronto. If you ever find yourself in Toronto and are looking for a good dinner with great service I would highly recommend going to any of The Keg’s locations.

The Keg Steakhouse and Bar

Canada Trip Recap Part 1: Anchor Bar

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Last weekend my friends and I took a road trip to Toronto Canada. On the drive up we stopped at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo, birthplace of Buffalo wings. The atmosphere of the bar is incredible. The bar is decorated with old license plates and other Americana that gives the bar a home town feel. The waitstaff was very friendly and the service was great. Because buffalo wings were invented here we ordered a bucket of their classic hot wings. The wings were delicious. They were cooked perfectly and the sauce had great flavor and just the right amount of heat. I have wanted to go to this place for a while now and was glad we went out of our way to stop at the Anchor Bar, the birthplace of Buffalo Wings

Anchor Bar