Cook. Nourish. Heal. Celebrate.

Posts tagged as stacey

Ooh! Aah!

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Jul 5, 2010 at 3:59pm

I cooked my brains out this weekend and loved every minute of it.  See Saturday’s results -  icy cold gazpacho, as well as poached eggs over potato pancakes – below.  Both are new favorites, and why not?  Crunchy, creamy, salty.  Pretty much everything I crave.

So where, you might wonder, are the pics of Sunday’s pork ribs, coleslaw, crushed potatoes with garlic & preserved lemon, and mini-burgers?  Well…

…I hate to say it, but the Annual Super Duper Shubert Coopster July 4th Celebration meal went largely unphotographed.  Turns out, I am terrible at entertaining and taking pictures at the same time.  Cory Shubert took the pics above and below – thanks man!

Luckily I possessed a no-fail pork ribs pic from when I posted the recipe on Dara & Co./Minnesota Monthly mag’s blog a few weeks ago.  If you look hard enough, you’ll see that these are everyone’s favorite ribs, falling-off-the-bone-tender with a crusty, spicy-sweet glaze.  It’s harder to see that they’re ridiculously easy, making them the perfect party food.  But it’s true.  If you give them a try, let me know.

I’m kicking myself for not snapping pics of the coleslaw and crushed potatoes – you’ll just have to take my word for it that both turned out so pretty.  I added sliced cucumber, quartered cherry tomatoes, and crispy bacon to the coleslaw.  Good move, I recommend all three additions.  The recipe for the excellent potatoes, via The Pioneer Woman (with the addition of garlic and preserved lemon), is below.  You could boil the potatoes a couple of hours ahead of time, keep them at room temperature, then crush (crash!) and roast them right before sitting down to dinner.

For dessert, Suz brought her now-famous blueberry kuchen, one of the best desserts on the planet.  Also easy (see a pattern?) – make it now through the end of the summer, when blueberries are at their peak.  Serve warm with a scoop of melty ice cream – fireworks in your mouth and a real crowd pleaser.

If you make it, take a pic and send it to me!

So there it is.  Another 4th of July, another summer celebration.  We swam, we sipped, we grilled, we ate.  We laughed our butts off, doused ourselves in bug spray, and hauled our chairs out onto lovely Interlachen Golf Course for fireworks.  The rain held off, the fireworks dazzled, and we made our way home to bed.  Oooh.

Aaaaaaaah.

I hope you all had a great 4th!

Crash Hot Potatoes
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman
Serves 6

12 whole new potatoes
4 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. chopped rosemary (or other fresh herbs)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 of a whole preserved lemon, seeds discarded, minced (I find jars of whole preserved lemons at Whole Foods)
coarse salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400F.  Bring a pot of salted water to boil.  Add potatoes and cook them until they are fork-tender.

While the potatoes cook, add heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat.  Add the rosemary and garlic and saute until garlic is fragrant and just softening, about 4 minutes.  Stir in preserved lemon and set aside.

Drizzle the remaining 2 Tbsp. of olive oil on a baking sheet and spread evenly.  Drain potatoes and place tender potatoes on the cookie sheet leaving plenty of room between each potato.

With a potato masher, gently press down each potato until it slightly crushes, rotate the potato masher 90 degrees and crush lightly again.  Spoon a bit of the garlic oil on each potato, using all the oil.  Sprinkle the potatoes lightly with salt.

Place potatoes in the oven and roast for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.  Grind black pepper over the hot potatoes and serve immediately.

“Oh, this pool is as warm as a Turkish Bath!” – Sullivan Shubert, age 8, in response to How’s the water Sully?, July 4, 2010
“I love these hamburgers so much I want to marry them, but the funeral won’t be long after…” – Sullivan Shubert, age 7, regarding mini-hamburgers, July 4, 2009
“They start big but end fast, like a good sneeze.” – Sullivan Shubert, age 6, explaining fireworks to Cooper, July 4, 2008
“Wow, those would make Vivian feel fancy!” – Sullivan Shubert, age 4, regarding super-sparkly fireworks, July 4, 2006

Chapa

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Jun 15, 2009 at 5:40pm

I’m really enjoying the concepts and recipes in my new cookbook, Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way, by Francis Mallman.  In particular, I’m a bit obsessed with cooking vegetables on a chapa – (from the book) a flat piece of cast iron or a cast-iron skillet set over a fire.  I’m using my big Le Creuset cast-iron skillet, set on my Weber gas grill.  I preheat the grill until it’s very hot (600+ degrees F), then lay the pan on the grate and preheat it until it’s hot too.  Most of the recipes in Seven Fires are cooked on a chapa, which quickly sears and caramelizes food – perfect for vegetables.  I mean prrrrrfect. I’ve created two insanely simple and delicious dishes so far – one Friday night for my friend Michelle (alongside salmon), the other tonight for just John and me.  Tomorrow?  Yep, but more on that in a second.

Let me back up a bit and explain the two dishes I’ve already made.  The first was Burnt Fennel and Zucchini with Parmesan, Lemon, and Basil (recipe here).  The technique is to thinly slice the vegetables, separately toss them with a bit of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper, then cook them separately (fennel first, pictured above, then the zucchini) on the hot (unoiled) chapa until tender and blackened in spots.  The warm vegetables are tossed together and finished with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, chopped fresh herbs, and crumble of Parmesan cheese.  I plated the vegetables over a slice of grilled whole-grain bread, and served alongside salmon fillets that I also cooked on the chapa (Arthur, if you’re still looking for a way to achieve crisp salmon skin, this may be the answer, since the pan is so much hotter than you can achieve indoors).

Tonight, armed with my new technique/experience, I rustled around in the cooler and unearthed wild mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, English peas, and spinach.  I grilled each vegetable one at a time, scraping into a serving bowl as I went along, finishing with a handful of quickly-toasted nuts, minced fresh herbs from my pots on the deck (basil, mint, oregano), a crumble of Parm, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.  Frankly, that was dinner – whole-meal-worthy and truly yummy.

I was needing a just-vegetables dinner after Saturday’s not-moderate feast, uff.  Stacey, Debbie and Stu The Wine Genius Williams, and Michelle (here for the weekend) joined us for a pool-n-grill Saturday, sunny and hot and perfect for a barbecue.   I slow-braised two spice-rubbed pork shoulders pretty much all afternoon in the oven, then finished them on the grill, crisping up the exterior and slathering them in barbecue sauce.  We ate the pork pulled apart on rolls, with a side of blue-cheese coleslaw, fresh farmer’s market snap peas, and apple pie a la mode for dessert.  The wine – thanks to Stu, so delicious.  Blast!

So tomorrow, more chapa vegetables, this time to toss with pasta.  I’m thinking more swiss chard, garlic, and sweet onion, as well as the one little slice of pancetta I have left from last week’s Springtime Fava Bean Salad with Poached Egg (like I said, I’m seriously digging this book).  Stay tuned…