Justin & Meredith Winokur's Kitchen Cooking Notebook

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House ("No Idea") and BBQ Beef Jerky


I made my regular house (aka "No Name") jerky and a BBQ jerky.



I used the regular recipe except did half the apple cider and the other half water since this was unfiltered.

It come together and extruded normally, but for some reason, despite being the identical beef to the BBQ, this was so oily when I checked on it. I swear I couldn't even really blot it. I ended up at a certain point since it was late, turning it off, placing it open on a lined plate, and refrigerating it. It seems to have reabsorbed the oil or something since it was fine in the morning. As usual, I treat these as something you should refrigerate but can last some amount of time


I kept this super simple. I worked out the math on salt and went with:

I mixed the TQ and the water, then mixed it all. I know Sweet Baby Rays is super fake (first ingredient: high fructose corn syrup) but I like it a lot. These came out pretty good. Not overpowering amount of BBQ sauce and you could still taste beef, but also not super overpowering.


I marinated them both for about 3 hours, then started drying at 6:25pm at 145°F. At 10:45pm, they were super oily (especially the House) as mentioned above. After blotting them, I did another hour at 160 and then basically gave up. I think they worked out fine though.

Egg Clouds with Chives


We made egg clouds based on the recipe from The Perfect Egg, by Teri Lyn Fisher & Jenny Park (LOCAL. We followed their recipe pretty closely and added chives fresh from the garden. It was actually pretty easy to do all of this. You just beat the eggs to medium-stiff peaks and then make a divot and add the yolk. We cooked it (on convection) for 11 minutes. I think next time, we'll do 8.

We also had it with some caprese salad.

Egg Clouds (From The Perfect Egg -- Book by Teri Lyn Fisher & Jenny Park)
Local Copy (U: guest, P: name of my dog, all lower case)


Egg on the pan With the divots for the yolk Adding the yolk Ready to go in the oven Out of the oven Close Up

Rotisserie Chicken Laap Salad


Meredith made modified chicken laap for lunches.

She did the stated recipe (except very light on the fish sauce and replaced some with soy). Plus the following

Of course, everything was really done to taste, but this is the general idea.

The biggest thing was the (untoasted) ginger and the lack of bite from the fish sauce. Meredith really doesn't like it so she went very low on it, but I think it really needed the bite and saltiness. She replaced some of the fish sauce with soy but not completely. I would do that next time. It would no longe be as Thai flavored but should still be good. Also, the ginger was extremely strong.

But, it was still a pretty good lunch.

Flat Out Pizza


We made Flat Out Pizza. Pretty simple and easy. We used FlatOut Flat Bread (~90 cal each).

I did one with BBQ sauce and one with Vodka sauce (the low cal one we often use for soup). I used rotisserie chicken and roasted red pepper with low fat mozzarella cheese. I also topped it with a bit of sriracha and salt (the cheese needed it).

Meredith also used the vodka sauce, red pepper, and rotisserie chicken capers plus the mozzarella.

I did it at 400°F for about 13 minutes.

Honestly, this is a pretty easy and mediocrely healthy. It is fast and the kind of perfect thing for a weeknight.

Seared Asian Salmon Salad


We were originally thinking of making our usual seared salmon but Meredith had the idea of doing an asian version. We used this Cook Republic Recipe (local) with a bunch of changes.

First, we seared the salmon using the usual method. That worked ok except that the sesame oil caused a ton of smoke. We also used half the amount of sesame oil. I went slightly light on the fish sauce but not much. (oh, as just used the micro plane to make ginger paste)

Meredith made the dressing and the salad. She went light on the oil but stayed with the general dressing.

For the salad, we skipped the glass noodles and used par-cooked asparagus in place of the snap peas. We also skipped the cucumber since ours went bad. And no pine nuts. The mint was fresh from the garden. She used a vegetable peeler to slice up the carrots which worked well.

Overall, it was pretty good. Other than the smoke, I liked doing the salmon like that. It was certainly very flavorful and the salad and dressing also worked out well.

We will certainly do this again when we want salmon.

Sticky Seared Salmon and Asian Crunch Salad (from Cook Republic)

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Green Chile Chicken Pot Pie


We made our usual Chicken Pot Pie (which I have now made into it's own page). We did the recipe and added Green Chile. I skipped both the lemon juice and the franks red hot. I think that the acidity/brightness was missed. But the chile was pretty good. It was spicy but could have used more flavor.

We also topped it with toast which was fine. Not as good as real biscuits (or presumably the phyllo). Worth doing again in the future.

Jerk Chicken Tacos


Meredith has been really wanting to make something like Torchy's Taco Brushfire. Their description is:


Jamaican jerk chicken, grilled jalapeños, mango, sour cream & cilantro. served with diablo hot sauce on a flour tortilla.

So we tried to make something similar. We used a Nigella Lawson via The Food Network recipe (local -- with lots of reformatting).

We followed the basic recipe with the following changes:

We shredded it with a bit of marinade paste (there was a lot). We made the tacos with heated corn tortillas, the chicken, sliced mango, cilantro, greek yogurt (instead of sour cream), and some bottled Diablo sauce from Torchy's. We actually made 6 chicken breasts and froze a ton of the chicken for another day.

The chicken was pretty good though not really anything like Torchy's. But the other toppings combined to make it at least resemble Torchy's (makes sense with the sauce).

Overall, I think we would do it again, but maybe with a different jerk chicken recipe (though we first have to use up these leftovers)

Homestyle Jerk Chicken (from Nigella Lawson via The Food Network)

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Sous-Vide Steak Sirloin


We made a sous-vide steak on salad. We were going to make two small steaks and something else, but we weren't very hungry so we just did the steak and a salad.

We sous-vide cooked it like Valentine's Day but since this was sirloin, we did it as 57°C (134.6°F1) which is hotter than for tenderloin but makes sense for sirloin. We set the slow cooker on High and set the tolerance as low as possible. I didn't super watch it but I know the temperature fluctuated a bit.

Also, I got the water to the right temp and then added the steak. This brought the temperature down a bunch and got messed up. Next time, I will try to get it to temperature with the steak in there already.

It cooked for about 2 hours. I then topped it with a bit of oil, salt and pepper, and then seared it.

They came out ok. A bit overcooked given how thin they were. And they were just not a good of a cut of meat. Also, there was some liquid from the steaks which I used a dressing on the salad.

Out of the slow cooker. Not a great color. Also, no idea what is up with the uneven coloring Liquid left over from the bags Searing them A cut showing some of the color

  1. The controller only work in °C 

Mussels with Roasted Vegetables


We had bought mussels for the day before but decided to save them. Given that we live in the dessert, our only real option was frozen ones. Actually, this is the first time I've seen frozen, unsauced mussels. If you read around online, they are generally looked down upon, but I thought they were pretty good.

We tried to make a sauce out of white wine, shallots, garlic (and maybe onion?). We also added some water as per some suggestions. When we steamed them, I think they released a ton of water. The mussels were really good (maybe a bit chewy but really not bad) but the sauce was super, super wet. We will work on that part of it.

We also roasted the following vegetables:

Really nothing too fancy but it was good.

Huevos Rancheros Taco Style


It was already around 8:45 and we needed dinner. We also had some deforsted ground beef that we had to use so I made the regular huevos rancheros and then also added taco beef. It worked fine and was a good way to get some extra protein in there.

Indian Style Scrambled Eggs


We had to be some place so this was a fast, easy, and healthy meal. Meredith made Indian Scrambled eggs from this The Kitchn recipe (local). She stayed pretty close to the recipe except skipped the cilantro and bird's eye chili (we were out cilantro and the bird's eye went bad) and used some Sriracha in place. She also did use the tumeric.

It needed some salt (she forgot to salt it as it went). Th ginger bites were actually really, really good.

We would do this again when we want something as easy as eggs but more interesting.

Kofta Style Tacos


We had some more raw beef we had to use up (didn’t end up having time for beef jerky) and we wanted something easy. We had taco meat the other day, so decided to do something different and make kofta tacos.

We used the kofta recipe but instead of mixing it all in raw, we sautéed the onions and then added all of the other stuff.

We didn’t have cucumbers so we just made a dip with za'atar and greek yogurt.

I tried to heat the tortillas in the oven which worked ok but not as well as when you do it on a flat pan (or, say, a griddle). But it let me do more at a time.

It actually came out pretty good. The beef had a lot of flavor and it was easy enough to make. I would do this again. Though, I thought the beef was more flavorful without the other stuff.

Additional Photos

Cooking. Adding the mint Za'atar dip and tomatoes

Foi Thong and then Ramen Rice Krispies


Foi Thong Ramen Rice Krispies

Looks gross!?!?! Yep!

We were invited to a "Mad Science" party like last year. We tried to make Foi Thong from Siam Sizzles (local). The general idea is that you pour egg yolks into bubbling simple syrup.

Rather than do it with Jasmine syrup, we steeped the simple syrup with lavender. We made a bag with cheese cloth. The flavor of the lavender was really, really evident and good.

But, I do not know if it was the lavender, the cast iron pan, or something entirely else, but half (or more) came out black and icky. I mean, really, really icky colored. The syrup was not black at the end so I am really not sure how it came out so black.

Either way, it was really not something we wanted to serve. And, despite doubling it, there really wasn't enough.

So, we pivoted and made Ramen Rice Krispie. Sure it was something we've made before but it was certainly interesting and different so we went with it. We just followed the recipe except doubled the butter as noted. They came out pretty good. I like this recipe, even if it is strange

Taco Stew


We realized we hadn't had taco stew in a long time so we decided to have it. We used the regular recipe but also added some worcestershire (which worked pretty well). Not really much to it. It is a simple and easy meal.

Oh, and we used tons and tons of zucchini

Jerk Chicken Tacos


I reheated the leftover frozen jerk chicken from 2016-04-07. I put it in a small pot with a tiny bit of water to steam and defrost it (which then used it's own water to keep steaming). I also added a bit of salt which it really needed.

I did it just like last time including using Diablo sauce from Torchy's.

It actually worked pretty well to defrost it like that. I liked having something easy. We will start keeping some stuff like this in the fridge.

Salmon and Chicken Burgers


Quick and fast meal. A chicken burger with some vodka sauce and roasted red pepper and a salmon burger with a little bit of mayo and Diablo sauce on the bottom plus more red peppers on top.

Quick, easy, and good.

Yakitori Quail Eggs, Fish and others stuff


This seems like a big meal, but it wasn't too hard. The main part of the meal was also the smallest, the yakitori.

Meredith made yakitori quail eggs from this Ottolenghi recipe (local). Meredith followed it pretty closely except did it with fewer eggs. Also, she skewered the eggs before grilling them. Also, she just eye-balled the marinade.

We did the boiling for about 2.5 minutes but (likely because of the altitude) it was just barely soft-cooked.

The came out really good. Like a small ramen egg. Maybe a bit richer. But we need to let it go a bit longer next time. The sesame salt was also good.

Other than that, it was a mix of thing. We cooked a frozen fish thing from Trader Joes. Sadly, we didn't really read it and it was covered in olives. I was able to ate some of it but I mostly had the kabocha squash and asparagus for dinner.

Yakitori Soy grilled quail eggs with sesame salt (From Ottolenghi)
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Quail eggs before starting Marinated Skewered Ready to grill On the grill The fish

Jerk Chicken Tacos


Like 2016-04-18, I made jerk chicken tacos with the leftovers from 2016-04-07 (See that page for more details and inspiration).

Not much to it. I reheated it from frozen with a little bit of steam and then added salt. Other than that, it was pretty simple.

I had two as tacos and then one just the meat.

Seitan Balsamic Stir-Fry


I worked really late and needed to make something fast. I also wanted to use the new type of seitan I bought (pictured below) so I made a quick stir-fry. It was just a one kohlrabi and a quarter head of cabbage. I roughly halved my usual balsamic sauce though I probably should have done a full amount.

There were two real problems with this dish.

  1. I needed to cook the kohlrabi longer. It was undercooked and bitter
  2. That seitan is pretty bad!!! I would not buy it again

It was nice having a quick and easy meal, but this was not a good meal

Flat Out Pizzas


Meredith and I made Flat Out Pizzas. I made two different ones.

The first was supposed to be a reuben pizza. I tried to make Thousand Island dressing (halved) but I didn't have ketchup so I used BBQ sauce. Also, this recipe just isn't very good. I think I keep going back to it since I don't have dressing. But this one was particularly bad.

Also I used Trader Joes Pastrami which wasn't very good. Or at leats not in place of corned beef. Overall, it just wasn't very good.

I also made one with BBQ sauce, cheese, and roasted peppers. Topped with an egg and Sriracha on top.

Meredith did something similar. She used vodka sauce with part-skim mozzarella cheese. She also topped it with a fried egg and some basil