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Jerk Chicken Bowls

Wednesday, August 24, 2016, 09:07 PM

A quick meal. We quickly defrosted (pan with some water) frozen jerk chicken from 2016-07-31. We made cauliflower rice and then sautéed peppers and onions with some butter. Finally, we topped it with Diablo Sauce.

Quick, simple, and pretty flavorful. The chicken was a bit tough (and cold for some pieces) so I should be more careful with that next time, but the rest was really good.

Frutti Di Mari with Zucchini (and regular) noodles

Monday, August 22, 2016, 08:31 PM

We made Frutti Di Mari (Fruit of the sea). As with just about every time before, we used the mixed seafood from Trader Joes.

Reading through some older posts (2010-09-23, 2010-11-01, 2011-05-09), I knew to expect problems with liquid from the seafood. I followed what I mentioned in the later of those posts and partially steamed them first. Just enough to get them fully defrosted and having shed all of the liquid.

For the rest, I started off by sautéing a finely diced onion in olive oil. I let that go for a while and then added a ton of heirloom grape tomatoes (They were really old and somewhat shriveled but they worked fine). All the while, I was adding salt, pepper, some garlic powder, and some crushed red pepper.

I put the garlic in and then the seafood to finish cooking. Followed by a huge handful of zucchini noodles and some lightly cooked al-dente pasta1. With the pasta, I had also reserved some liquid and added a splash of that.

I let it finish cooking down just enough to evaporate the liquid and thicken it. I topped mine with parm cheese though Meredith skipped it.

I think this was probably the better Frutti Di Mari we've had! I liked all of the flavors and the simplicity. I also liked the mix of real pasta and zucchini noodles. It helped bulk it up without being too many calories.

  1. Probably about 2-3 "servings"

Collard Greens Wraps

Monday, August 22, 2016, 06:30 AM

This is less about the actual wrap (though I describe it below) and more about the method. Meredith had originally heard of the idea from Inspiralized, though I also later read about it in The Kitchn (they may have gotten it from Inspiralized's instagram).

Essentially, you just use collard greens as a wrap. They are large and strong leaves that hold up well to being wrapped like a tortilla. I thought it worked out pretty well!

Anyway, this particular wrap was:

For other ideas are:

Anyway, this is a pretty cool idea and certainly something we will do again!

Grilled Chicken Saltimbocca, Sides, and Grilled Strawberry Shortcake

Sunday, August 21, 2016, 09:27 PM

We had friends over and wanted to make a nice meal. They were bringing sides so we focused on dinner and dessert (and eggplant).

Dinner: Chicken and Sides

We made Chicken Saltimbocca. All of the chicken breasts at the store were too big so we went with chicken tenders. I pounded them out a bit and then made a marinade of:

I let it marinate for a few hours. I then dried them off and laid down a layer of prosciutto and some fresh sage. I closed it up in half, put a toothpick through (the long way from the front to the fold), and dredged it with some flour (with a bit of salt and pepper).

I grilled them for about 6 minuted per side. They worked out pretty well. I think I a toothpick of two1. But other than that, they were good. I do not know if I really got the wine though.

We also grilled some eggplant. Our friends brought a caprese salad and some cauliflower-broccoli salad. I really liked them both. We didn't make it, but they told us they reduced the balsamic first. I think I would try that in the future! It coated the stuff better and had a nice sweetness.

Dessert: Grilled Strawberry Shortcake

Meredith had seen this Joy The Baker recipe (Local 2). We made the pound cake but made High Altitude Changes. The altitude changes were:

We also added a bunch of chopped lemon thyme from Meredith's garden and the usual heavy on the vanilla.

We planned to reduce the time. I do not know if the oven wasn't hot enough or I forgot convection (really not sure). But it took a lot longer. I eventually had to cover the top to not burn it and let the rest cook through.

That did work well enough though.

After it was cool, I off four slices (8 total). I grilled them with the heat really low and coasted with melted butter (instead of oil). After I flipped them, I turned on the other burners on low and turn off the direct one while Meredith finished the strawberries. She macerated them with some additional lemon thyme and also lemon zest (and just a Tbsp of sugar). We did less sugar for the whipped cream (and a more soft-peak).

I forgot to take the final picture, but it was pretty good. The cake had a bit of crisp. It wasn't as heavy as a normal pound cake but I liked it a lot still. And the lines looked really fancy (even though it didn't make much difference).

It was also nicely moist (a concern for Albuquerque) but pound cake is pretty forgiving.

  1. OOPS!!!

  2. U: guest, P: name of my dog, all lower case

House Flavor and Teriyaki Flavor Beef Jerky

Saturday, August 20, 2016, 09:38 AM


I've done this before on 2014-12-30 so I used a similar recipe, but I made some changes. For instance, we used Teriyaki sauce from 2016-07-24 which was very sweet so I didn't add extra sugar.

Anyway, it was:

The beef was super (!!!) wet. 1/2 cup of liquid is really the absolute upper bound I think for how much goes into it!

House Jerky

This was just my usual house jerky with bison. The only difference is that I wanted to use regular salt so I used about 2 1/4 tsp Diamond Brand1 kosher salt aiming for about 2500mg. I think it was actually a bit too salty this time. Other than that, I kept to my usual recipe.

Timing and Log

I did both at 160°F.

Sure enough, the teriyaki did dry up pretty well. Still a bit more moist (and chewy) than I wanted but I think that is what should be expected

My Notes

Also noted is a buffalo jerky recipe I was going to do but ended up doing teriyaki instead.

  1. This one more coarse so this is still about 2500 mg sodium

Grilled Sausage and Stuffed Pizza Mushrooms

Friday, August 19, 2016, 08:00 PM

We went for a meat-heavy (ish) meal when we had friends over. We decided to again go with a mix of sausage. We had (down the center, then the two sides) from Whole Foods.

I also made pizza-stuffed mushrooms. It was pretty straight-forward. We used a bit of Delallo Vodka Sauce, then some fresh mozzarella and then some Trader Joes sopressata. Really simple and not too much to it. They were also pretty good!


Pizza Mushrooms prep Grilling it all

Thai Beef Salad and Mushrooms

Tuesday, August 16, 2016, 12:00 AM

This was a mixed successes. I made the regular Thai Beef Salad but doubled the sauce (and used the normal additional fish sauce but no more than that). I also put in 3 diced Bird's Eye Chiles and still 1 tsp of cayenne (as opposed to 2 when doubled). It was a bit too acidic so I added extra sugar to balance it.

Meredith thought the sauce smelled too fishy. I agreed about the smelled but I actually thought it tasted very good! Spicy, but good. The problem was the beef. I marinated it overnight (and also with some chiles). I didn't use rib-eye since it looked fatty but I should have. This was so tough. Some pieces were edible but many were just too hard to chew. I'll do better next time!

I also grilled stuffed mushrooms but they were store made. I would do that again or, better yet, make them myself.

(In the pictures below, you can see I was also grilling chicken. That is for tomorrow)

Everything on the grill. Chicken is for tomorrow Nice lines on the steak
The mushrooms

Indian Scrambled Eggs and Yuca Home Fries

Monday, August 15, 2016, 08:29 PM

We made a pretty simple though oddly eclectic meal. Meredith made Indian Scrambled Eggs (Egg Bhurji) like we did before on 2016-04-13. I think she followed the recipe pretty closely. We used 3 chile peppers instead of one and it still wasn't too spicy. We also threw some (full-fat) yogurt (bought for a later meal) into the eggs kind of like cream. We also skipped the cilantro and added cumin. Meredith said she also went heavy (~2x) on the turmeric.

I also made yuca home fries. I had to peel the wax and then cube it. I cooked it in the cast iron with some oil and then later butter. I also threw some salt and pepper in too. I liked the flavor a lot but it was also pretty and kind of dry. I think that it may just be that yuca is a bit dry. I would still do this again.

Making the yuca Working on the onions. Very yellow


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