meat

Short Ribs with Barbecue Gravy

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Lots of people find January a big disappointment. It can be cold and dreary and sometimes seems like a letdown after months of holidays and celebrating.

But the food is good.

I like to call January cuisine. Filling, nourishing, comforting stuff.

Like short ribs.

 

Short Ribs with Barbecue Sauce

  • 5-6 pounds beef short ribs 
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped chile pepper
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 stalks celery, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 cup ketchup 
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1 cup beer or ale
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar 
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar 
  • 2-3 thyme sprigs (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Dry the surface of the meat with paper towels. Heat the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Working in batches, cook the meat, turning the pieces to brown them, for 4-5 minutes or until lightly browned. (If the oil seems too dark, discard it, wipe the pan and add 2 fresh tablespoons vegetable oil.) Remove the meat and set it aside. Add the onions, garlic, chili pepper, carrots and celery to the pan and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the ketchup. Pour in the stock, beer, cider vinegar and soy sauce and stir the ingredients. Stir in the brown sugar. Return the meat to the pan and spoon some of the sauce over them. Place the thyme sprigs and bay leaf in the liquid. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Bring the liquid to a boil. Lower the heat, cover the pan and cook at a bare simmer for about 4 hours or until the meat is fork tender (or place in the oven at 225 degrees).

Makes 6-8 servings

 

Barbecue Meatloaf

Daylight savings time ends this weekend and I always have mixed feelings about that.

I hate that it gets dark so early and that there are so few hours of actual daylight. On the other hand, I like the crisp autumn weather -- not too hot, not too cold.

I hate that it's too cold outside for me to cook something on the outdoor grill. On the other hand, I love the comforting, warmth-giving dishes I make in the crockpot and the oven.

So I've been thinking about meatloaf.

It's a winter-sort-of-dish.

But because of the barbecue sauce, this one lingers with memories of the summer gone by.

A perfect dish for transitioning to days without daylight savings time.

 

BBQ Meatloaf

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1-1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 8 ounces ground veal or turkey (or use more beef)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup beef or vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup barbecue sauce

  

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 2-3 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic, cook briefly and set aside in a bowl to cool. Add the beef and veal and mix gently to combine ingredients. Add the eggs, stock, breadcrumbs and some salt and pepper and mix gently to combine ingredients. Place the mixture into a 9”x5” loaf pan. Spoon the barbecue sauce on top. Bake for 60-75 minutes or until the meat has come away from the sides of the pan (thermometer should read 160 degrees). 

Makes 6-8 servings

Philly Cheese Steak, the Kosher way

Philadelphia. City of Brotherly Love. So named (from the Greek words "philos" meaning love and "adelphos" meaning brother) because the city's founder, William Penn, wanted the place to be a refuge from religious persecution. 

I wonder what Penn might think of that today, what with this year's contentious election and the Democratic National Convention at hand in the city.

But, current times aside, Philadelphia has a lovely history.

Home of the Liberty Bell. And Independence Hall, where the founding fathers debated (and adopted) the Declaration of Independence AND the Constitution.

Once the temporary capital of the United States while the newly minted America waited for the District of Columbia to be built.

And, among the more mundane of matters, home of the Philly Cheese Steak.

Philly Cheese Steak.

I have to say, I've been to Philadelphia several times and never ate one.

But thoughts of the city and its famous hoagie (hero sandwich, sub, whatever others may call it) got me to think about trying one at home.

Kosher.

I looked at lots of recipes and saw that they called for different cuts of beef, cut into strips. I decided on skirt steak because it's so juicy and flavorful.

I also noticed that the cheese could be cheddar or American or provolone and even -- OY -- cheese whiz. 

I opted for provolone (non-dairy, soy-based from Daiya Foods) because it has such a magnificent tang to it.

Some recipes called for sauteed mushrooms or other vegetables in addition to the more usual onions and red bell pepper. I decided not to.

In the end -- magnifico!!

Does it taste the way a Philly Cheese Steak is supposed to? 

I have no clue.

All I know is that it tasted good. Very good.

And so, in honor of Philadelphia's few days in the sun again -- my recipe for Philly Cheese Steak.

 

Kosher Philly Cheese Steak

  • 8 ounces skirt steak, semi-frozen
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, deseeded and sliced into narrow strips
  • 2 hoagie rolls
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 4 slices Daiya soy “provolone style cheese”

Cut the beef into thin slices against the grain. Heat the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and pepper strips and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes or until soft and lightly browned. Add the meat to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3-4 minutes or until browned. Cut the rolls in half. Move the meat and vegetables to one side of the pan (or temporarily spoon into a plate) and place the 4 pieces of roll, cut side down in the pan. Cook for a minute or so, to lightly toast the rolls. Turn the rolls cut side up. Using equal quantities, place equal quantities of meat and vegetables on each of the two roll bottoms. Top with equal amounts of the soy cheese. Cover with the tops of the rolls. Turn the heat to low. Cover the pan and cook for a minute or so or until the cheese has melted.

Makes 2 sandwiches

Burnt Ends! Let the Grilling Begin

I'm not a big brisket fan. Not when it's braised and swimming in liquid anyway, and I realize that it is an almost heretical thing for a Jewish woman to admit. But there it is.

However -- SouthWest style brisket? With barbecue sauce and dark, crusty burnt ends?

Oh yes! Love that. And now that grilling season has arrived (at least here in Connecticut), I can have some!

Briskets were on sale recently at Fairway supermarket, so I bought a whole, gigantic piece and cooked it with a new recipe for barbecue sauce.

SO good. 

Really.

The instructions on how to cook brisket before grilling it are here.

Here's the recipe for the barbecue sauce. Keep slathering it on the meat. If you make a smaller hunk, you can keep the rest of the sauce in the refrigerator for a few weeks.

Applesauce and Tomato Barbecue Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons chopped chili pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup apple sauce
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, chili pepper and ginger and cook, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes or until softened. Add the tomato sauce, apple sauce, honey, cider vinegar, soy sauce and chili powder and stir until the ingredients are well blended. Simmer the sauce for 25-30 minutes, or until thickened.

Makes about 2-1/2 cups

 

 

 

Breast of Veal for Passover

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In my world, Passover is not usually the brisket fest that is typical for so many of the other families I know.

Our usual is turkey. Second night veal.

That's because, growing up, when the Seders were at my grandma's house, and the crowd could be as many as 24 people, she always served a big turkey the first night. The second night, when we were a much smaller group, she would cook a batch of veal cutlets with a crunchy matzo meal crust.

Frankly, I don't feel like frying up a whole mess of cutlets, so my Passover veal dinner will likely be breast of veal, one of my favorites meats to eat. I realize a lot of people think breast of veal is too down home for a festive occasion such as Passover.

I don't agree. Look how beautiful this roast is! Golden brown skin, meaty bones, moist meat, savory vegetables to accompany. Looks impressive to me! And also quite good to eat, for Passover or otherwise.

Roast Breast of Veal with Mushrooms, Onions and White Wine

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 10 ounces fresh mushrooms
  • 1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 breast of veal, about 3-4 pounds
  • 1/2 cup white wine

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for about 2 minutes, to soften slightly. Add the mushrooms, garlic and parsley, stir and cook for another 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon the vegetables into a roasting pan. Place the veal breast on top. Brush the top surface of the meat with the remaining olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes. Pour the wine over the meat. Reduce the heat to 350 degrees. Roast for another 45-50 minutes, basting occasionally, or until the surface is crispy.

Makes 4 servings

Soup for When you are Sick

Everyone knows you're supposed to have chicken soup when you're sick. 

However, recently, when I had a cold that lingered and lingered and really needed soup I didn't feel like going out to buy a chicken. Or peel carrots. Or rinse the fresh dill.

I didn't feel like doing much of anything frankly, but I did want homemade soup.

So I made some from what I had in the house.

It was an amazing dish. Hearty, tasty, nourishing. Also EASY. 

I did feel much better the next day.

The recipe is extremely forgiving, so here it is with a bunch of ways you can vary the recipe depending on what you have in your house.

Freeze some for the next time you don't feel great and need some soup. Or want some wonderful, thick and filling dish for dinner.

Soup for When you are Sick

  • 3-4 meaty marrow bones
  • water
  • one package of bean soup mix or vegetable soup mix (I used Manischewitz but any is fine)
  • one large onion, chopped or sliced
  • one cup of split peas (green or yellow)
  • 3/4 cup lentils
  • 1/2 cup any whole grain (such as farro, barley, wheatberries, kamut)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Place the bones in a pot, cover with water (about 8-10 cups) and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and skim the stuff that comes to the top for about 10 minutes. Add the whole package of soup mix, the onion, split peas, lentils and whole grain, plus salt and pepper to taste. Partially cover the pan and simmer for hours, stirring occasionally, until the dried vegetables are very soft. I sometimes add more water if the soup is too thick.

Additions:

  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 3 stalks celery, sliced
  • 4-6 soaked and chopped dried shiitake mushrooms, coarsely cut
  • Frozen corn kernels and/or lima beans (add about 1/2 hour before soup is done)
  • Whatever else you like (I sometimes add chicken bones in addition to meat bones)

Makes about 6 servings of soup (you have to fight over the bones or make it with 6 bones)

 

Breast of Veal with Mushroom "Dust"

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Breast of Veal is either "peasant food" or "holiday festive food" depending on who you ask.

I don't care about such things. If I like how it tastes I want to eat it.

Like Breast of Veal. The meat is sweet and soft. The bones are gnaw-worthy.

I usually braise or stew this portion. But I decided to roast one, inspired by a recipe I saw in Bon Appetit Magazine for Grilled Porcini Rubbed Rack of Veal

Okay, theirs was rack, mine breast. Theirs was grilled, mine roasted. The ingredients are different, except for the dried mushrooms (they called for mushroom powder, I crushed my own dried mushrooms) and crushed red pepper.

But I do have to credit them for the inspiration. Dried mushrooms and veal -- perfecto!

 

Breast of Veal with Mushroom Dust

  • 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 medium clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 3-4 pound breast of veal
  • salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Crush the mushrooms using a rolling pin (or use a food processor) until they are ground to "dust." Place the mushroom dust in a bowl. Add the olive oil, chives, red pepper, garlic and lemon juice. Stir to blend the ingredients. Place the veal breast in a roasting pan. Brush the mushroom mixture over the top surface of the meat. Sprinkle with salt. Cover the pan with aluminum foil. Roast for one hour. Remove the cover and raise the oven heat to 425 degrees. Roast for another 15-20 minutes or until the surface is crispy.

Makes 4 servings

Ouch! It's So Cold

It's like 9 degrees outside.

And there's something wrong with our furnace so it's not exactly warm enough in the house either.

Fortunately, there's a serviceman here.

Plus a slow-cook dish in the oven.

Both, I trust, will get life warm soon enough.

Lamb Shanks with White Wine and Rosemary

  • 4 lamb shanks, about 1 pound each
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 large plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 leek, washed and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 habanero chili pepper, deseeded and chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Trim any excess fat from the shanks. Pour the olive oil in a large, deep sauté pan over medium heat. Add the shanks and cook them for 8-10 minutes, turning them occasionally, to brown all sides. Remove them from the pan and set them aside. Pour out all but about a tablespoon of fat from the pan. Add the tomatoes, carrots, onion, leek, garlic and chili pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes to soften the vegetables slightly. Pour in the stock and wine, mix the ingredients and bring to a boil. Place the shanks into the vegetable mixture and baste a few times. Place the rosemary sprigs and parsley in the pan, season to taste with salt and pepper and cover the pan. Place the pan in the oven and cook for 2 to 2-1/2 hours or until the meat is soft. Discard the rosemary sprigs. Serve the lamb as is, with the vegetables and pan fluids OR, puree the pan fluids with the vegetables and serve it as gravy with the meat.

Makes 4 servings.

Pearl Fein’s Standing Rib Roast

Today is my husband’s birthday. He’s an almost impossible person to buy a gift for. But he is the most possible, positive and terrific person to cook for. 
 He eats and enjoys whatever food I prepare. He is a good sport and will taste and comment on all the recipe creations and experiments I work on for my newspaper articles and blogging. 
 So, what to make him for him birthday dinner? (He prefers to stay at home instead of go out, especially ever since our favorite local restaurant closed.) 
 I thought about Chinese take-out but he nixed that (maybe because he knows it’s not my favorite). 
 He would be happy with anything he could pour ketchup over, so maybe hamburgers or beef stew? (But those don’t seem festive enough.) 
 He would really love a corned beef sandwich on rye bread but our local deli’s stuff is awful and I don’t feel like driving into New York City and downtown to Katz’s to get one (even though they have some of the best corned beef sandwiches in the world). 
 He isn’t much of a dessert eater, so even though I make decent pie and cake, none of that would do it for him (although he does like European style, dense chocolate cake with apricot filling …). 
 He adores candy, but I usually don’t make my own, so I bought him his favorite dark chocolate-almond bark and a bagful of red-colored, chocolate coated candies filled with pomegranate. 
 After thinking it all over, I decided I’ll make Rib Roast. The way his mama made it. He really really loves that. It was his mother, Pearl Fein, who taught me how to make a Rib Roast. She would always make this dish for special family occasions. They were always so wonderful (the beef and the occasions). 
 So, that’s it. And here is her recipe, which I’ve posted before, but it’s worth doing again: 
     
  Pearl Fein’s Standing Rib Roast  
 1 2-3 rib beef roast 
 kitchen string 
 1 tablespoon paprika 
 1-1/2 to 2 teaspoons salt 
 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 
 1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder 
 water 
 Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Carve the meat from the bones as close to the bone as possible so that you are left with a round beef roast and L-shaped bones. Tie the meat back onto the bones with kitchen string. (This procedure makes it much easier to carve the cooked meat.) In a small bowl, combine the paprika, salt, pepper and garlic powder plus enough water to form a paste. Brush the paste on all of the meat and bone surfaces. Place the roast bone side down in a roasting pan. Roast for 20 minutes. Lower the heat to 350 degrees and cook for about 15 minutes per pound or until it is cooked to the doneness you like. Use a meat thermometer (place it in the middle of the meat) and remove the meat from the oven when it reaches 115 degrees F for rare and 130 degrees F for medium. Let the roast rest for 15-20 minutes before you carve it (the temperature will rise a bit during that time). Snip the strings and place the now-boneless roast on a carving board to slice. Makes 4-6 servings

Today is my husband’s birthday. He’s an almost impossible person to buy a gift for. But he is the most possible, positive and terrific person to cook for.

He eats and enjoys whatever food I prepare. He is a good sport and will taste and comment on all the recipe creations and experiments I work on for my newspaper articles and blogging.

So, what to make him for him birthday dinner? (He prefers to stay at home instead of go out, especially ever since our favorite local restaurant closed.)

I thought about Chinese take-out but he nixed that (maybe because he knows it’s not my favorite).

He would be happy with anything he could pour ketchup over, so maybe hamburgers or beef stew? (But those don’t seem festive enough.)

He would really love a corned beef sandwich on rye bread but our local deli’s stuff is awful and I don’t feel like driving into New York City and downtown to Katz’s to get one (even though they have some of the best corned beef sandwiches in the world).

He isn’t much of a dessert eater, so even though I make decent pie and cake, none of that would do it for him (although he does like European style, dense chocolate cake with apricot filling …).

He adores candy, but I usually don’t make my own, so I bought him his favorite dark chocolate-almond bark and a bagful of red-colored, chocolate coated candies filled with pomegranate.

After thinking it all over, I decided I’ll make Rib Roast. The way his mama made it. He really really loves that. It was his mother, Pearl Fein, who taught me how to make a Rib Roast. She would always make this dish for special family occasions. They were always so wonderful (the beef and the occasions).

So, that’s it. And here is her recipe, which I’ve posted before, but it’s worth doing again:

 

Pearl Fein’s Standing Rib Roast

1 2-3 rib beef roast

kitchen string

1 tablespoon paprika

1-1/2 to 2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder

water

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Carve the meat from the bones as close to the bone as possible so that you are left with a round beef roast and L-shaped bones. Tie the meat back onto the bones with kitchen string. (This procedure makes it much easier to carve the cooked meat.) In a small bowl, combine the paprika, salt, pepper and garlic powder plus enough water to form a paste. Brush the paste on all of the meat and bone surfaces. Place the roast bone side down in a roasting pan. Roast for 20 minutes. Lower the heat to 350 degrees and cook for about 15 minutes per pound or until it is cooked to the doneness you like. Use a meat thermometer (place it in the middle of the meat) and remove the meat from the oven when it reaches 115 degrees F for rare and 130 degrees F for medium. Let the roast rest for 15-20 minutes before you carve it (the temperature will rise a bit during that time). Snip the strings and place the now-boneless roast on a carving board to slice. Makes 4-6 servings

Bulgogi

This is not your grandmother’s flanken. But it is flanken, aka shortribs. And this meat can be tough and chewy, which is why grandma poached it in soup or in a slow-cooker with some good brown gravy or sweet and sour sauce.  I loved grandma’s flanken.  But, maybe because I don’t eat meat that often and yet think of myself as a devoted carnivore, I decided to put flanken and summer together using a grill.  So I made Bulgogi, a Korean dish in which the shortribs marinate in a soy-sesame oil based sauce before being grilled.  Yes, the meat is not as tender as other cuts, like rib. But much cheaper and, for meat lovers, gives quite a satisfying resilience. I served the Bulgogi with sauteed bok choy and steamed rice.  YUM.    Bulgogi    1/4 cup soy sauce 3 tablespoons sugar 2 tablespoons sake (or rice wine or sherry) 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1 tablespoon sesame oil 3 scallions, minced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, finely crushed  1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper  3 pounds flanken or boneless short rib toasted sesame seeds for garnish, optional  Place the soy sauce, sugar, sake, vegetable oil, sesame oil, scallion, garlic, sesame seeds and crushed red pepper in a bowl and stir, making sure to dissolve the sugar. Place the beef in a non-reactive dish and turn the pieces to coat all sides. Let marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Preheat the oven broiler or outdoor grill (or use a grill pan), skewer the meat and grill for 3-4 minutes per side or until crispy and done to your liking. Garnish with a small amount of toasted sesame seeds if desired.    Makes 4-6 servings

This is not your grandmother’s flanken. But it is flanken, aka shortribs. And this meat can be tough and chewy, which is why grandma poached it in soup or in a slow-cooker with some good brown gravy or sweet and sour sauce.

I loved grandma’s flanken.

But, maybe because I don’t eat meat that often and yet think of myself as a devoted carnivore, I decided to put flanken and summer together using a grill.

So I made Bulgogi, a Korean dish in which the shortribs marinate in a soy-sesame oil based sauce before being grilled.

Yes, the meat is not as tender as other cuts, like rib. But much cheaper and, for meat lovers, gives quite a satisfying resilience. I served the Bulgogi with sauteed bok choy and steamed rice.

YUM.


Bulgogi


1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons sake (or rice wine or sherry)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3 scallions, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, finely crushed
1/2 to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3 pounds flanken or boneless short rib
toasted sesame seeds for garnish, optional

Place the soy sauce, sugar, sake, vegetable oil, sesame oil, scallion, garlic, sesame seeds and crushed red pepper in a bowl and stir, making sure to dissolve the sugar. Place the beef in a non-reactive dish and turn the pieces to coat all sides. Let marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour. Preheat the oven broiler or outdoor grill (or use a grill pan), skewer the meat and grill for 3-4 minutes per side or until crispy and done to your liking. Garnish with a small amount of toasted sesame seeds if desired.

Makes 4-6 servings