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Tag Archives: beef

Hearty Sloppy Joes

14 Mar

This weekend marks the end of spring break for us.  The kiddos might not be ready for the end of their vacation from school, but let’s just say I’m good with resuming their school schedule.  The ongoing freeze has made it hard to spend time outside during spring break this year.  Three kids plus a new puppy under one roof equals one exhausted mommy.  Thus, I packed everyone in the car today (puppy included) for a good romp in the empty, snow-laden park fields.  Energy outlet galore!

Hearty Sloppy Joes

Days of chaos render little time for padding around in my kitchen.  Crazy days like these call for simple yet fool proof meals.  Meals that everyone will happily run to the dinner table for.  Meals that can be made ahead of time and easily served.

Hearty Sloppy Joes 2

These tasty sloppy joes are one of my favorite go-to recipes for crazy weeknights.  If I know the next day is going to be hectic, I like to prep the ingredients for sloppy joes the night before.  Then, all I have to do is put it on the stove the next day.  Easy.  Hugely flavorful.  Satisfying.

Hearty Sloppy Joes 3

I often use ground turkey for my sloppy joes, but ground beef works well.  My guys inhale this stuff, and it makes enough for leftovers, which taste amazing!    Be sure to have enough buns on hand, as it’s easy to polish off several of these at one sitting.

Enjoy something yummy for your chaotic days 🙂

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RECIPE (approx. 10 servings)

INGREDIENTS

2 lbs lean ground turkey (or beef)
1 chopped brown onion
1 chopped green bell pepper
2 TB olive oil
4 cloves chopped garlic
1 TB mustard
2 cups ketchup
1 cup tomato paste
2 TB brown sugar
2 tsp kosher salt, divided
2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
Shredded cheddar cheese for topping
Buns

DIRECTIONS

In a large pan, brown meat with 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper over medium heat.  Drain and set aside.

In same pan over medium heat, stir together olive oil, onion, green pepper, garlic, 1 tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp pepper until veggies are soft.  Drain liquids.  Add back the browned meat to pan.

Stir in mustard, ketchup, tomato paste, and brown sugar.  Stir to incorporate well.  Bring to simmer.  Let simmer for 30 minutes, covered.  Can be made ahead of time, and reheated for serving.

Serve warm, with shredded cheddar cheese on hamburger buns.

Source:  Chew Out Loud

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Teriyaki Meatloaf

16 Feb

East has been meeting West in the foodie world for years.  Most of the time, dishes that are in the realm of Asian Fusion seem sophisticated and somewhat polished.  That said, I wonder where this Teriyaki Meatloaf fits in.  It’s more of an Asian Fusion comfort food.  Great grub.  Ordinary, yet extraordinary.

Teriyaki Meatloaf 5

This Teriyaki Meatloaf is soooo addicting once you’ve tried it.  It puts a fantastic spin on traditional meatloaf.  Not that traditional meatloaf isn’t totally yummy, but this just takes meatloaf to a whole new level.  It’s one of our favorite weeknight meals.

Teriyaki Meatloaf 4

I love that this teriyaki meatloaf is super easy to prepare, and the perfect solution to a busy weeknight.  It will feed the whole clan, and tastes like you spent way more time on it than you really did.

Teriyaki Meatloaf

Teriyaki meatloaf yields a tender, full-flavored dish.  It’s both savory and sweet.  The sauce is scrumptious.  It’s perfect with your favorite style of rice.  Leftovers reheat well, but we don’t tend to have much left over with this one.  Enjoy it!

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RECIPE (serves 6-8)

INGREDIENTS

For the Sauce:
3/4 cup light soy sauce
3/4 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp fresh ground pepper

For the Meatloaf:
2 lbs. lean ground beef
1 small onion, finely chopped
4 slices bread, torn into small pieces
3 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
3 cloves garlic, minced

DIRECTIONS

Set oven to 350F, with rack on middle or lower middle  position.

Mix together sauce ingredients with whisk until incorporated.  Set aside.  Mix together all Meatloaf ingredients.  Stir in the sauce, reserving 1/3 cup for later.  Mix thoroughly.

Press mixture into large loaf pan or shape your own loaf in a 13×9 pan.  If using loaf pan, be sure to have a large pan underneath to catch spillage.  Pour remaining sauce over top of meatloaf evenly.  Bake for 1 to 1.5 hours or until meat is cooked through.

Slice and serve with your favorite rice.

Source:  Chew Out Loud, adapted from my sweet friend Diana.  Because of you, Diana, we’ve enjoyed this scrumptious meatloaf for many years!

French Beef Stew (Boeuf Bourguignon)

7 Feb

Don’t let the Boeuf fool you.  Boeuf Bourguignon became a household term after Julie and Julia in 2009.  Despite sounding delicious, the dish got a bit of a fussy reputation.  Admittedly, upon initial glance at the multi-step instructions, I almost felt a stumble in my stride.  To go forth or not?

Boeuf Bourguignon French beef stew

Ultimately, curiosity took over and Mr. Boeuf lost his intimidation factor.  Victory!  That was well over a year ago.  This succulent dish has since become one of my favorite entrees.  Whether we’re having dinner guests or craving something special for the fam, this French Beef Stew is consistently a no-fail crowd pleaser.  After all, ultimately it’s just a good beef stew.  Taken up a notch.

Boeuf Bourguignon French beef stew 2

The bit that takes some pre-planning is the browning of individual cubes of beef.   You’ll have to wear an apron, but the complex flavors are so worth it.  Browned chunks of beef are cooked down in red wine and savory broth, adorned with mushrooms and pearl onions.  Flavorful herbs are slow cooked in the broth. The result is the most tender, savory, richly flavorful beef stew ever experienced.

Hint:  Make this stew the night before and simply reheat when ready to seve.  Relax on the day of your dinner party…how great is that?!  Plus, the flavors in the stew infuse even further with time.  Indescribably delish.

Boeuf Bourguignon French beef stew 3

Serve up your boeuf Bourguignon with a rustic, crusty bread or egg noodles or carb of choice.  You really can’t go wrong here.  Break out a bottle of a  plush, fruit-forward Pinot Noir for a phenomenal pairing.

Seriously, make this for your next dinner party.  Or date night.  Valentines Day.  Family weekend.  Your loved ones will be singing your praises.  Enjoy! 🙂

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RECIPE (6 servings)

INGREDIENTS

Light olive oil or peanut oil
12 oz thick applewood smoked bacon, diced
3 lbs chuck beef, trimmed and cut into 1 inch cubes
1 lb carrots, peeled and cut into chunks or coins
2 yellow onions, thinly sliced
10 cloves chopped garlic
1/2 cup Cognac
2 cups good Pinot Noir (or other good quality dry red)
2 1/2 – 3 cups low sodium beef broth
2 TB tomato paste
1 tsp dried thyme
4 TB room temp butter
3 TB flour
1 lb frozen pearl onions, whole
1 lb fresh button or cremini mushrooms, thickly sliced
3 bay leaves
kosher salt
fresh ground black pepper
chopped fresh parsley for garnish

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 350F.  Heat 2 TB oil in large Dutch oven (or heavy, oven-safe pot with tight fitting lid.)  Add bacon and cook over medium until evenly and lightly browned throughout.  Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon to a large plate.  Remaining oil and grease should stay in the pot.

Using paper towels, thoroughly dry uncooked beef and sprinkle the cubes evenly with a thin layer of kosher salt and fresh ground pepper.  Reheat the oil/bacon grease in the Dutch oven and sear the beef cubes in a single layer, working in batches, until each cube is brown on all sides.  Do not over crowd the pan, making sure to leave some space between each piece of beef.  Add more oil as needed to finish browning.  Set beef aside in plate with the bacon.

If needed, add 2 TB to pot and heat oil.  Add carrots, onions, garlic, 1 TB kosher salt, 2 tsp black pepper and saute for 5 minutes until onions are lightly browned.  Deglaze bottom of pot, adding 1 TB oil as needed.  Add Cognac and cook another 10 minutes on medium.

Add beef and bacon back into Dutch oven with their juices.  Add the wine and enough beef broth to almost cover all the meat.  Add tomato paste, thyme, and bay leaves.  Bring to simmer, stirring occasionally.  Once liquid is reaches a simmer, cover the pot with tight fitting lid and place in oven for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until meat is very tender when pierced with fork.

Meanwhile, mix together 2 TB butter with 3 TB flour in small bowl and set aside.  Saute mushrooms with 2 TB butter in skillet just until mushrooms start to become soft.

Remove stew from oven.  Add the butter/flour mixture, frozen pearl onions, and mushrooms to the stew.  Bring to a boil on stovetop and immediately reduce to simmer.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.  Skim off any fat off the top.  Remove bay leaves.  Season with additional kosher salt and fresh pepper to taste.

Garnish with fresh parsley and serve with crusty bread or egg noodles.

Source:  Chew Out Loud (adapted from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking and Ina Garten)

Note:  If not serving immediately, let the stew cool to room temp and store in fridge.  Just before serving, bring stew to a simmer.  Cover and simmer 15 min, basting with its own sauce a few times while simmering.

Wine Pairing:  A good quality red, similar to the one you used in the recipe.  A jammy Pinot Noir recommended.

Throwdown! Hot ‘n Tangy Steak

11 Aug Throwdown Steak

This is the famous Throwdown! winner steak, where Bobby Flay’s competition, Major Eric Dominijanni,  fought hard and won.  Before I dish on the recipe,  I have to reveal what went down before any cooking actually occurred in my kitchen.  The beef in this steak recipe is supposed to be marinated 4-6 hours.  I decided I wanted to let it marinade overnight, so I started to prep the ingredients the night before.  Why I decided to do this just as the kids were transitioning from dinner to bedtime, I have no clue.  As I dug around my kitchen, I was able to find everything but the meat.  “Where’s the beef?!”  Heh Heh.  You have to remember the 80’s to get it… humungous buns, teeny-tiny patty…

I had a sinking feeling that maybe I left my not-so-cheap beef tenderloin at the store, where I had been frazzled due to my boys either laughing or fussing or both.  I vowed – for the 40th time – that I’d never bring more than one child to the grocery store again.  After making Hubby dig through the big trash can for the itsy-bitsy store receipt (I did my share of digging), would you believe what I found?  The silly ‘ol beef surfaced in the fridge.  Yep, just surfaced.  How funny!  Hubby didn’t think it was funny.

I happily went on to make the marinade.  This marinade is surprisingly easy to make.   When I followed the instructions to toss the marinade over the beef in a plastic bag, I accidentally spilled some of it.  OK, a lot of it.  This is why my kitchen rug now smells like soy sauce.

Thankfully, there was still enough marinade left to soak the steaks in, because the recipe makes a whole slew of sauce.  Good.  I didn’t have to go and remake the marinade.   Let’s just hope this steak is worth it.

Throwdown Steak

Throwdown! Steak – the one that took down Bobby Flay

This steak looks and smells so good, you’ll grow hungry just standing near it.  There is an approximate amount of minutes for cooking, but we always make sure to press down on the meat to feel for the right amount of doneness.  That’s because steaks vary in thickness.  Medium rare feels semi-soft.  Not soft like when it was rare, but not firm either.  If it feels firm, you’ll have a well-done steak.

Throwdown Steak

Throwdown! Steak – perfectly medium-rare

The sauce is an eclectic combination of spicy, tangy, and sweet.  I didn’t put as much heat into my sauce, just out of personal preference.  If you like it hot, absolutely go for the whole habanero!

Throwdown Steak

Throwdown Steak – Spicy, Tangy, and Sweet

The orange zest and fresh lemon gives this sauce a nice citrus complexity.  The soda (or pop, for Midwestern peeps) provides the sweet.  As you know, I used tenderloin for my steaks, which means they were super tender.  The original recipe uses New York strip steaks, which I think would be awesome as well.

Throwdown Steak

Throwdown Steak – U.S. Marine Captain Eric Dominijanni beat out Bobby Flay

So, did this steak turn out tasting like it could take down Bobby Flay?  You be the judge.

RECIPE (serves 4)

INGREDIENTS

1 can regular cola (12 oz)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup garlic teriyaki sauce (I used regular teriyaki and added minced garlic)
1 habanero chile, with seeds, finely chopped (use gloves!)
1 TB grated orange zest
1 TB grated fresh ginger, peel removed
1 TB extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing steaks or grill
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3/4 tsp fresh squeezed lemon
4 New York strip steaks, about 3/4 in thick (I used tenderloin steaks)

DIRECTIONS

Mix all the ingredients, except for beef, in a bowl.  This can be made ahead of time and kept in fridge when ready to use.  Place steaks in resealable bag and pour just enough marinade to completely cover the meat on both sides.  Set aside remainder of marinade.  Set steaks in fridge 4-6 hours or overnight.  Take steaks out 30 min to 1 hour before grilling, so it can get closer to room temp.

Take the unused marinade and reserve about 1/3 cup of it in a bowl for basting.  Pour the rest in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to simmer, and stir occasionally for 10-15 minutes.  It should thicken a bit, to a dipping sauce consistency.  Set sauce aside.

Preheat grill to high.  Oil the grill or coat steaks with oil.  Grill over direct high heat, basting occasionally.  Turn over once, about 3-4 minutes per side for medium rare.  Remove steaks from grill and let rest for 3 minutes before slicing.  Serve warm, with dipping sauce.

Recipe adapted from Bobby Flay’s cookbook, Throwdown!

Ultimate Bacon ‘n Egg Burger with Roasted Garlic Mayo

31 Jul Egg Burger Roasted Garlic Mayo

I can’t help it.  Every time I see pictures of big, juicy burgers, I feel the need to take a bite.  Whether it’s flipping through a magazine, surfing food blogs, or passing a colorful billboard… my eyes and stomach linger on the pretty burger.  Burgers have come a long way – what used to be simple fast food has become a canvas for diverse gourmet creations.  I’m of the variety who likes to try new things at least once.  The first time I tried a burger featuring a gooey good egg, I fell for it.   This summer, I grilled us up some juicy bacon ‘n egg burgers.

Egg Burger Roasted Garlic Mayo

Ultimate Egg Burger, fully loaded with good stuff

Yeah, I am a fan of almost anything involving eggs.  And avocados.  And bacon and sauteed mushrooms.  Melty cheese and crisp arugula?  Those, too.

ultimate egg burger roasted garlic mayo

Ultimate Egg Burger – topped off with roasted garlic mayo

This burger would be fantastic with just mayo or mustard, but since I’m a huge garlic fanatic (freak, really), I doctored up the mayo with roasted garlic.  Make this roasted garlic mayo, and you’ll have an awesome condiment for any burger, sandwich, burrito, etc. etc.  If you haven’t roasted garlic in awhile (or ever), here’s how to do a fool proof roasted garlic.

Ultimate Egg burger

Ultimate Egg Burger – get your napkin ready for eggy goodness to drip. Hey, if it’s that good, it’s gotta be messy!

You can, of course, cook your eggs to your preferred doneness.  I crave a bit of runny egg yolk, so I do mine over easy.  Enjoy the rest of summer with another great burger!

RECIPE (4 large burgers)

INGREDIENTS

2 lbs good ground beef (80/20)
4 eggs
8 slices bacon, cooked and drained
1 avocado, sliced and drenched in lemon juice
1 vine-ripened tomato, sliced
arugula
1 package sliced mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
havarti or cheddar cheese slices
roasted garlic mayo*
salt and pepper
6 TB light olive oil

DIRECTIONS

Make roasted garlic mayo (recipe below).  Keep in fridge.

Liberally season beef with salt and pepper.  Shape into 4 large patties, and set aside at room temp.

Heat 2 TB oil and garlic in saute pan  for about 1-2 minutes.  Saute mushrooms until just soft.  Remove from heat.  Drain and set aside.

Heat up 2 TB oil in large nonstick pan on medium high.  Crack two eggs directly into pan and sprinkle on salt and pepper.  After about 30 seconds to 1 minute, carefully flip to other side, taking care not to break yolks.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper again and cook another 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until your desired doneness.  Heat up another 2 TB oil and repeat with other 2 eggs.  Remove from heat.

Grill burgers to medium rare or medium.  Keep warm.

Assemble your burgers:  Spread garlic mayo on buns.  Layer on arugula, tomato, avocado, bacon, mushrooms, and warm beef patties.  Place sliced cheese over warm patties.  Top with eggs.

*  Recipe for 1/2 cup of Roasted Garlic Mayo:  Roast 1 head of garlic (how to roast garlic).   Mash up roasted garlic.  Mix well with 1/2 cup mayonnaise.  Mix in 1 TB lemon juice and 1 tsp paprika.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Mix well.  Lasts for up to a week in fridge.

Source:  Chew Out Loud

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