Friday, June 4, 2010

Lip Smackin' Good!

Just in time for the summer we made food from the Central Plains.
You know what goes well with taking American Regional right now; the documentary on the History Channel - America Story of Us. The show has gone along with the cuisine we have been making in class.

The menu consisted of Beef Barley Soup, Wisconsin Cheese and Beer Soup, brownie pudding cake, Kansas City BBQ Ribs, Steak Fries, Cannellini Beans with Tomatoes and Basil, Roast Chicken with wild rice and dried fruit stuffing, corn and wild rice cakes, morel mushrooms with spinach, Garden Lettuce and goat cheese salad, Stuffed Pork medallions with fruit sauce, macaroni and cheese, and sour cream coffee cake. I know this seems like a lot of food but we did this in two days.

The beef barley soup was great and very easy to make; you brown the meat, then sauté the vegetables, add the barley and coat in the small amount of fat used to sauté the vegetables. Then you add the tomato product and pince; add the herbs, stock, Worcestershire sauce and simmer for 30 minutes or until the barley is tender. Remember to skim the fat if any floats to the top like the BP Gulf Oil Spill.

The cheddar beer soup was another easy to make soup. First sauté onion, celery and red bell pepper; cook until translucent. Add flour to the mix and whisk to make a roux; add the seasonings and cook for about 3 minutes. Add a 12 oz can of beer and 2 cups of chicken stock; stirring vigorously until the roux dissolves and simmer for 30 minutes. Separately heat 2 cups of milk and add to the soup; remove the pot from the heat and stir in 2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese. Adjust the seasoning add cooked sausage and you are golden...awesome soup!

This time I made a desert; Brownie Pudding Cake. The brownie pudding cake is just like a molten lava cake. First you cream the sugar, butter, eggs, cream and vanilla. Then add a sifted mixture of flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt to the cream mixture. Grease a loaf pan or square pan and pour in the batter. Separately boil 1 1/3 cups of water; add it to a mixture of cocoa powder and brown sugar. Make sure to add the water slowly you want the melted chocolate mixture to stay semi thick; like a fondue. Pour the melted chocolate over the batter and pop it into an oven for 35 minutes at 350 degrees.

Ok so the ribs were a-mazin'! We have an awesome smoker in class but you can create a kettle smoker at home or buy a small smoker. First thing first; remove the membrane off the back of "back ribs." Then rub with a dry rub of chili powder, sugar, paprika, celery seed (or celery salt), onion powder, kosher salt, ground cumin, dry mustard and cayenne. Then smoke for about an hour/ hour and a half. Take the ribs out and lather on a good amount of BBQ sauce; then place back in the smoker for another 30-45 minutes. MMMMM lip smackin' good!!!
The other dish definitely worth talking about is our stuffed pork tenderloin which was sliced into medallions. The pork tenderloin was split and then mallet beaten; stuffed with nut and re-hydrated dry fruit. Then you roll up the tenderloin, layer with bacon and truss. Then bake until 155 internal temperature is reached.

Everything else turned out great! The goat cheese salad was very refreshing, the sour cream cake Maria made was very tasty and a good way to top off the evening. We sprinkled the cake powdered sugar and drizzled caramel. The corn cakes were a little burned and the sides were all pretty easy. We also stuffed another pork tenderloin with minced/ sauteed chorizo and garlic.
Overall an awesome evening of culinary yummyness...

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