Avocado Soup with Shrimp

This afternoon, most glorious spousal unit sent me a recipe. It intrigued me, but not enough to actually follow it.
Avocado Soup with Shrimp
This cold soup is amazingly simple when you have ripe avocados, shrimp, lime juice, butter, sherry, pequin powder (or cayenne), fresh garlic, chives, and some whole milk on hand.

Oh yeah, you’ll also need a blender and a pan to cook the shrimp.
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Pan Seared Center Cut Top Sirloin

Posted by johngl

A few weeks ago, I was wandering the Costco Isles and happened upon a whole top sirloin with the cap intact. This was prime grade beef and around five bucks a pound. Still, it’s a lot of meat. Some butchery was in order. There’s a guide offered here, but I adhere the general rule of follow the muscle.

After I removed the cap, I followed the tissue and found this little beauty:

Sirloin_log

Okay, so it wasn’t seared off yet, but you get the idea. This is a muscle in the center portion of the sirloin, all trimmed up and seared at blistering temperatures in a cast iron skillet.

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Big Green Egg: Pork (Tenderloin) and (Black) Beans

Posted by johngl

I can’t believe how long it has been since I’ve posted anything food related; celebrating the longest day of 2013 seemed like a good enough reason. We’re also experiencing the largest full moon of the year, which is probably exerting its gravitational effects upon the fluids in my brain. You could call it high tide I suppose. Maybe just high.

Anyway, yesterday afternoon I walked into the kitchen and most glorious spousal unit took it upon her fine self to thaw out some whole pork tenderloin.

Wait, let’s back up to last week.

myboneistoobig

This is pork shoulder bone. It was destined for a waste receptacle. That ain’t right.

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Big Green Egg: Paella!

Posted by johngl

I’ve had my extra-large Big Green Egg for about a year and it kind of surprises me that I hadn’t considered using it for paella. With its tight seals and absolute temperature control, I thought it would make things go quite smoothly, and, for once, I turned out to be right!

Big Green Egg: Paella!

That’s an 18″ diameter paella pan in there; my Egg was just the right size to clear the handles.

Let’s step back for a few minutes so I can show you how I got to this point. There are a few things that must be done to make an acceptable paella.

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Study in Sous Vide Top Sirloin: Sirloin “Tips” over Duck Egg Noodles with Bordelaise Sauce

Posted by johngl

Last week, I presented a wonderfully dismembered hunk of Prime Grade top sirloin that I’d immersed in my sous vide rig for about four hours. That little piece in the middle was just perfect for this dish:

Sous Vide Sirloin "Tips" over Duck Egg Noodles with Bordelaise Sauce

This was really a quick and easy dish, but before we get too far into the meatier portions, let’s talk about how to make those duck egg noodles.

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Grilled T-Bone, Gnocchi “tots”, and (un)truRoots Bean Trio

Posted by johngl

I’ve been good lately. I mean dietwise good (let’s not get too crazy). I’ve dropped over 30 lbs from my all-time high of 238 by getting a lot more exercise and generally eating smaller portions. It was time for a reward dinner. So, last night, I ate a 30 ounce T-bone, bone and all, all by myself. OK, so I didn’t actually eat the bone, but certainly gnawed on the thing.

Grilled red meat, legumes, and Gnocchi "tots"

It’s a little difficult to believe that I used to eat that kind of volume on a regular basis. People told me, Dude, you’re six and a half feet tall, you can carry that extra weight. Maybe so, but I have to say that I certainly feel a lot better down here in the 207 range. My goal is to get under 200. And, in case you’re thinking that’s too thin, there was a time when me and my (racing) bicycle together weighed in under 200. I was a rail-thin 165 in those days, eating 6000 calories a day.

Enough about me. Let’s get on with the food!

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Swedish Meatballs over Duck Egg Noodles

Posted by johngl

Inspired by a trip to IKEA, a company founded in 1943 by a then 17 year old Swede named Ingvar Kamprad, I was (strongly) encouraged by most glorious spousal unit to make some “Swedish Meatballs.” She wanted them over duck egg noodles rather than the traditional boiled potatoes, and, since I had no desire to argue the point, I gave it a whirl.

I was sure I’d tried Swedish Meatballs at one party or another, but, as it turned out, what the host called those meatballs had little to do with Sweden and more to do with Italy. Since I’d never made them before, I was swimming in unknown waters.

Swedish Meatballs over Duck Egg Noodles

It turned out to be a nice swim.

Let’s get those duck egg noodles out of the way first…

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Celebration In Rack of Pork: Smoked and Pan Fried

Posted by johngl

I’m gonna warn you ahead of time: this post contains digressions. If you are looking for a recipe for smoked rack of pork, you may want to go elsewhere. On the other hand, if you are more into real life adventures, you may just want to hang out and stay a while.

Firstly, the celebration part of this has to do with my dining room.  Most glorious spousal unit and I came up with a design for 1) extra storage space, 2) a serving bar, and 3) something that looked cooler than a blank wall. This idea was four years in the making and began with this pencil on graph-paper sketch circa 2007:

Dining Room Cabinets On Graph Paper

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Simple Foods: Shrimp & Quinoa

Posted by johngl

Contrary to what I said in a recent post, most glorious spousal unit actually answered the “What would you like for dinner?” type question specifically and succinctly yesterday morning. I even got the idea that she really does read my posts, though, perhaps, it was simply coincidence.

The whole thing began as I was heading out the door for a luncheon appointment (with my two favorite lawyers in all the world). “Hey sweetie,” I says. “Would you like some fish or something for dinner?  I can pick it up on the way back from lunch.”

“Shrimp!” she says.

“Shrimp and scallops perhaps?” asks I.

“Just shrimp.” she answers.

She commandeth … and it was done.

Shrimp and Quinoa

Since my Florida days, when I bought live shrimp right off the boat (dockside in Cedar Key)  for three bucks a gallon, I’ve been nuts about shrimp. I miss those days, but I still love shrimp.

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