Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Why won't you comment....

Ok blog readers...I am getting a little worried that I never get any comments...I don't understand.  I write this blog because I want to know about you too.  I ask the questions at the end because I really want to know about you...I have some commenters, thanks Elizabetha and Melissa, but that's about it...what's with the no commenting.  Come on show your girl some love.  Are my questions lame, do you just like to read, but not write?  What's up?

For a Crowd: Chili and French Fries

I am a big chili fan, but in a different way than most people. I like most of the chilies I have ever tried, regardless of the variety: full of meat, no meat, chicken chili, white bean chili, Mexican chili…I usually enjoy all of them.  It seems most people prefer one time or one recipe, and won't stray from that. Additionally, I don’t have “the best chili recipe ever” in my repertoire. I am constantly experimenting and in all honesty I usually just use whatever I have on hand. Here is an easy one I have posted before.  This past Sunday the FH and I were settled in on the couch to watch the NFL championship games and I thought a big pot of chili would be the perfect meal for the afternoon; luckily I had everything I thought necessary to put it together: ground beef, onions, spices, canned tomatoes, and kidney beans; and some extras to make it even better: carrots, peppers, beef broth and French fries. Most likely all these ingredients make perfect sense except the French fries, but I LOVE a big pile of salty French fries smothered with a heaping ladle of chili and topped off with cheese! I mean come on what is better than that? Yes, the more usual suspects: corn bread, Fritos or tortilla chips, are all delicious, but I think French fries are the best choice. I just used the Orieda frozen kind, and sprinkled them with a lot of Cajun seasoning and salt before cooking…I wanted to watch the games, not stand by the fryer all afternoon. Oh and the other great thing about chili…leftovers, alot of times the repeat is better than the original…I can’t wait until dinner tonight! I am posting my recipe below, but you should think of it as more of a guide, as even I don’t follow it all the time. Use what you have, more of what you like, omit something if you don’t like it…have fun!

Do you have a favorite or go to recipe for chili? Is it a family one that has been handed down, or did you make it up, or find it on a book or TV show? Or is anyone else like me out there and just make it up as you go along?  What is your favorite chili aaccompaniment?
Sincerely Loving Food,

Friday, January 21, 2011

Happy Friday!

I hope you are all as excited about the weekend as I am. 

Tonight I am going to Seasons 52 for dinner with the FH.  I love their flat breads and desserts, and its great that they use "seasonally-insirpired" dishes AND nothing on the menu is over 475 calories!  Since we are each trying to loose a couple of lbs before the big day it seems like a good choice.  But the wine may cancel out the restraint on the food...

Do you have any fun dinner plans for the weekend?
Sincerely Loving Food and Weekends,

Thursday, January 20, 2011

For 2: Pork Milanese

If you haven’t figured it out from all the previous posts, I thoroughly enjoy a good pork chop. Here are some previous ones: Rosemary Horseradish, BBQ and Parmesan Crusted, but I had one the other night that might be my all time favorite: Pork Milanese. It was similar to the Parmesan crusted one, but less hands on and requiring much less time. Before cooking I pounded out the boneless chop with my rolling pin and then coated it with panko and parmesan and then pan fried. They came out crispy and delicious. To complement it I used this creamy orzo recipe from Giada De Laurentis, that had tomatoes and peas in it; which made for the perfect dinner!

What is your favorite meat: chicken, beef or pork? Do you like orzo or do you stick to traditional rice or pasta? If you do like orzo do you mix anything in with it or just eat it plain?
Sincerely Loving Food,

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

For 2: Braciola

I found a recipe for Braciola (yeah, I don’t know how to pronounce that either) in the Everyday Italian Cookbook by Giada de Laurentis. And OMG it is delicious; I mean steak stuffed with breadcrumbs, herbs and cheese cooked in tomato sauce. Hello, what is bad about that? Here is a link to the recipe on food network’s website and it is exactly like the one in the book. The only thing I did different was I used a large rib-eye steak that had been hanging out in my freezer for awhile and flattened it out with my rolling pin. Because of that I used about half the amount of all of the other ingredients and only cooked it for about 30 minutes. Make this, it is awesome! I served it over pasta with sauteed mushrooms and the FH said it was one of the best things he had ever eaten.  Granted he maybe blowing smoke, but I promise you the man in your life will love this dish. It looks super special, but it really isn’t that hard, makes a great impression! I am putting my pictures below. Enjoy!
Sincerely Loving Food,

Imagine a steak rolled out on a cutting board, sprikled with bread crumbs, minced garlic, pecorino romano, provolone and parsley.  Then imagine it being rolled up and tied with butcher's twine.  Then see the beauty you imagined, in a cast iron skillet being browned:

After the meat is browned on all sides, pour on the wine to deglaze the pan and then stir in the marinara sauce.  You can make your own or use the jar, either is perfectly acceptable!  Then cover that skillet with foil and stick it in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes, let all the flavors mingle!

Sautee some mushrooms in a little olive oil and boil some pasta:
 Put the mushrooms over the pasta in a totally haphazard manner:

Slice the Braciola cross wise and place it on top of the pasta with lots of the sauce and loads of parmesan cheese, yum...yum...

Friday, January 7, 2011

100th Post! Restaurant Review - Buckhorn Exchange

I just have to do it. I can’t hold back anymore. If you have a weak stomach you may want to stop reading right here….Last week, in Colorado (haha, like last summer at band camp) I ate rocky mountain oysters, aka bull testicles. That’s right bull balls…and not just me, the future husband ate them, and our friends that we were visiting ate them and we cleaned the plate…it was pretty crazy. Marc & Nicole, the FH’s bestie and his wife, humm…do boys have besties, or is it just “their buddy”? Anyway…Marc & Nicole took us to the oldest restaurant in Denver, the Buckhorn Exchange, it is famous for pretty much coming up with the idea to eat these jewels and call them Rocky Mountain Oysters. Oh, and they have Colorado liquor license number 1! Pretty impressive, can you imagine how much liquor has been drank there... Anyway sorry this post is all over the place I am just so excited; I can’t contain myself or my thoughts. There are a couple of things I want to tell you, so I will do it bullet point style and hopefully get this train wreck of a blog post under control:

  • The restaurant itself is amazing; there are big game heads hung all over the place and it is like museum with old stuff every where: dishes, pictures, Native American clothing. So cool! Luckily our server was into history and was able to tell us stories of FDR coming in here and Buffalo Bill’s buddy started the place and 5 presidents have eaten there and really it is amazing. Check out the website, if you are ever in Denver you should try this place.
  • Crazy appetizers: Rocky Mountain Oysters, Grilled Rattlesnake that was marinated in chili lime sauce, blackened unicorn (ok I made that up, the unicorn I mean but everything else is really there). We tried the Rocky Mountain Oysters which were served with 3 sauces: mustard, marinara, and horseradish. I like the horseradish the best! In all honestly since the “oysters” were deep fried they really didn’t have a distinctive taste. The thing I relate them to the most is a fried chicken liver. Oh, and I had a cup of navy bean and ham soup – to die for! It is the same recipe that they were using back when FDR came…so cool.
Picture of Rocky Mountain Oyster to be posted later, check back….
  • The main courses will blow your mind! On the menu is beef, buffalo, elk, lamb, I could go on and on. The FH and I shared the special which had four ounce filets of: buffalo, elk and ostrich and was served with a full quail and giant mound of mashed potatoes. They were all so good, and all of these meats are 90-95% lean. The ostrich was my favorite, it sort of tasted like a duck but not greasy at all and it had the richness of a really good beef filet. Marc and Nicole had some of the same things we had but they also had lamb and yak and said the yak was the best…interesting I might have to go back to Denver.
So there it is my crazy eating adventure in Denver. It was a blast. If you ever visit I highly, highly recommend this place. What is the most adventurous thing you have ever eaten? Did you like it? Would you recommend it?

Sorry pictures to come later in the day…

Sincerely Loving Food,

Thursday, January 6, 2011

For 2: Pork and Shrimp Stir Fry

First of all sorry for my absence; I traveled over New Years. But, I can’t wait to start blogging again! I have some posts to put up of recipes I made over the last couple of weeks and then I will be posting some “New Year’s Resolution Recipes” aka – healthy food!

I absolutely LOVE stir fry. Sometimes I think I could eat Chinese food every day! The other week I really had the craving for a fried rice dish and I knew at home in the fridge I had one boneless pork chop and a handful of frozen shrimp. This got me to thinking; I bet I could make a shrimp and pork friend rice dish and only include my favorite vegetables: mushrooms, bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, broccoli and peas. Thanks to this awesome sauce I found:

the dish was a huge success and the FH and I had fun making it together (he made the rice and I made the stir fry). I really encourage you to try this on your own and really change it up to your tastes, use whatever meats and veggies you like!
Sincerely Loving Food,