Monthly Archives: January 2013

Rye Bread and Brisket Sandwich

Brisket Sandwich

This weekend I stopped by a grocery store while I was running some errands around the the city with the thought that I would buy some beef to cook, but what kind and what I was going to make I did not know. While at the store I stopped by the meat counter and ended up getting a nice piece of brisket. I don’t know what possessed me to pick it but I did, figuring that once I got home I would figure out something to do with it. While I was at the store I also picked up some rye flour for another random whim to make bread which I talk about in my Bread Galore post.

So when I got home and was pursing my cookbooks and the internet for an idea of what to do with the meat I found a nice recipe for a nice preparation of brisket that I decided I would make the next day (see more below on the brisket making). While I was letting my bread dough rise I continued to purse the internet on the subject of brisket when the idea of making a good deli style brisket sandwich came to me. As I was making Rye bread anyways it seemed like the perfect fit.

For the bread I  used the basic Ratio for rye bread from Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking, but there are also a lot of great Rye Bread Recipes in Lucky Peach Issue 4.

brisket

For the brisket I pretty much followed the Nach Waxman’s Brisket of Beef Recipe with a few slight changes. I salted the meat about 4 hours before I cooked it to help flavor it and pull out the juices so it would sear better and be more flavorful. The only other change I did was add shallots to the onion mix and did not add the carrot. This recipe was great and the brisket came out very juicy and flavorful.

I also prepared a quick Cabbage slaw for the sandwich since I had some cabbage hanging around and I thought it would be a nice accompaniment to the meat (see below for my recipe).

Once everything was cooked I sliced my homemade bread added a bit of mustard to one piece of the bread (homemade mayo would be great too), added the slaw, brisket, and cut in half.

It was a delicious sandwich that I defiantly will be making again!

CABBAGE SLAW

1 Green Cabbage Diced

2 Green Onions Sliced

1/4 Cup Vegetable Stock

½ Cup White Vinegar

3 tsp Sugar

2 tsp Salt

Juice of ¼ of a Lemon

In a small bowl mix together everything but the cabbage and green onion making sure the sugar and salt are dissolved. Put diced cabbage and green onion in a large bowl, add in the liquid mixture and toss to coat.
Let sit for at least and hour to overnight in the refrigerator.

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Bread Galore

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Over this past weekend I went on a bit of a bread making spree and made two different breads. The first one was a pretty standard rye bread and the other was a bit of an experiment making falafel flavored bread. Earlier in the week I had randomly bought some Garbanzo Bean Flour with out any idea what I was going to do so when I decided to make the Rye bread the idea came to me to make a Falafel flavored bread. I used the spices typically used in a falafel to spice the bread, I felt that it needed a bit more spice to really make the falafel flavor come through. Next time I will tweak my spicing mix I added in to make the flavors pop a bit more. All in all though both breads were very good and easy to make.
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To make both breads I used the basic ratios and instructions in the book Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking. I ended up using the Rye bread to make a delicious deli style beef brisket sandwich that I will post more about later this week.

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Veggie Burger Maddness

veggie burger

When shopping at my local grocery store the other day I randomly bought a bag of buglur wheat with the thought I would make some kind of veggie burger. This was a bit of a out of character thought for me as I am not a huge veggie burger person and the thought of making them has never occurred to me before either, but alas that is what happens. So tonight I made my own version of a veggie burger with bulgur wheat, potato, and chipotle.

Burger Patty

1/4 Cup Chopped Italian Parsley

1/2 Shallot Minced

3 Cloves Garlic Minced

1 Medium Russet Potato Mashed

3 Cups Cooked Bulgar Wheat

1 Chipotle in Adobo Minced and 2tsp adobo sauce

2tsp Fish Sauce*

2tsp Light Soy Sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Burger Fixings

Bun ( I used onion)

Alfalfa Sprouts

Goat Cheese

Portabella Mushroom (for the deluxe edition)

Making the Patties

Cook the Bulgur wheat and make the mashed potato.

Mix the chopped parsley, shallot, onion, salt and pepper together. Add the mashed potato to the herb and garlic mixture.

Once the mixture is all mixed through add the bulgur wheat and chipotle pepper and adobo, mix though and add fish sauce* and soy sauce.

*Note that the fish sauce adds a nice unami flavor to the burger but you can not taste any fishy-ness.

When everything is mixed together make the patties making sure to not make them too big, they are better if a bit smaller.

Heat up a cast iron pan so it is very hot, add oil and place the patty in the pan. Let it cook on the one side until golden then flip and cook the other side until golden.

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Assembling the Burgers

Toast the Bun

Put alfalfa sprouts on the bun

Place on the burger on the sprouts

Put Goat Cheese on top and Serve

For the Deluxe Edition cook the Portabella Mushroom until it has softened and is warmed through and place on top of the cheese and serve.

the deluxe edition

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Noodles for Days

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In an effort to work on refining my cooking skills and not wasting food I have been making a lot of vegetable stock  I have been using my vegetables that are not too old to eat but are not ideal to use in the state that they have ended up in by hanging around my apartment too long. This has been perfect as the weather has been cold and soupy goodness is just the right thing.

Vegetable stock is an incredibly easy thing to make. There are great recipes and guidelines everywhere but a quick rundown of my basic technique is as follows.

_DSC0792   1. Cut up whatever vegetables I have on hand, making sure at the very least there is some carrot and onion in the mix. (pictured on the left; this stock had carrot, red and white onions, cilantro, plum tomato, 1/2 a jalapeno, bay leaf, Salt, and black peppercorns.

2. Throw everything in a large pot and cover with water filling the pot most of the way

3. Put on the stove on low and let cook for a hour or two making sure it does not come to a simmer.

4. Strain through a fine mesh strainer and use!

With my vegetable stock I have been especially into making noodle soups. To do this I have been heating up my stock, sometimes with a little bit of miso paste and dried shitakes for some extra flavor, cooking noodles and some sides separately and throwing it all together. I have been adding some soy sauce to the shitakes for them to take on some extra flavor and adding them to my final noodles as a garnish.

I think the most important thing when cooking at home, especially when making something as simple and versatile as noodles, is to not take things too seriously. Anything can go and as long as it tastes good who really cares after a long day at work?

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Sunday Shopping To Do

chinatownshoppinglist

Going on a Sunday Chinatown shopping trip to stock up on some basics and essentials. I recently just got the cookbook Mastering the Art of Chinese Cooking by Eileen Yin-Fei Lo and I am looking forward to trying out some new recipes and techniques once I get a wok!

Stay tuned for my foray into Chinese style cooking and what I end up coming back with from Chinatown.

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Taco Truck Chicken

tacotruckchicken

The spring and summer of 2011 were glorious ones full of excessive drinking and cheap eats. My group of friends and I would frequent one of our favorite Brooklyn Bars pretty much every Monday night for the Classic country night. These weeknights of drinking were excessive in manner and ran late into the evening, probably too late for a Monday night, which always entailed some late night food especially because we would usually not eat between work and meeting at the bar. There were a few great options of food close by but one of our favorites for its awesomeness and pure convenience was the taco truck in the bar backyard. My item of choice was the Chicken Quesadilla. The chicken was tender, tasty, and perfect in my quesadilla.  As time went on and our weekly tradition faded I still wanted that delicious chicken quesadilla with out having to go to the bar and with this desire the Taco Truck Chicken recipe came about.

This chicken is pretty quick to make, you can vary it endlessly, and it is great in everything.

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THE CHICKEN

This makes enough chicken to make 4-6 quesadillas

½ Medium Red Onion – Diced

4 Cloves of Garlic -Minced

3 Whole Plum Tomatoes (fresh in season or canned out of season) – De-seeded and Diced

3-4 Sprigs Fresh Cilantro – Chiffonaded

½ Jalapeno – Minced

Lime -Juice of

Can of Light Beer (I used Tecate but Budweiser or something similar works too)

1-Tablespoon Valentina Hot Sauce

2 Chicken Breasts

Salt to Taste

Butter

Dice all of your vegetables, keeping the onion and garlic together and the tomato in a separate bowl.

Add the juice of half a lime to the tomato and some salt (about 1/4 tsp)

Heat up a medium sauce pan and when warm add the butter, onions, and garlic. Let them cook until they start getting a little color and then add the the tomato, jalapeno, and cilantro and mix.

Add the chicken on top of of this mixture and add some salt. Cover with 8 to 10 oz (depending on the pan you are using) of beer to almost cover the chicken.

Cook on low until the chicken is mostly cooked through. Once cooked remove the chicken to a cutting board.

Turn up the heat on the remaining liquid in the pan, reduce the liquid by half.

While the ‘salsa’ mixture is reducing cut the chicken into small pieces.

Once the liquid is reduced add the Valentina hot sauce and mix in. Add the chicken back in and cook the rest of the way through.

Now your chicken is done and you can use it how every you would like. I love Quesadillas and I have explained how I prepare mine below. This is also great to mix in with rice and melt cheese on top, in tacos, or as a base to a tortilla soup.

THE QUESADILLAS

The Chicken (see above)

Tortillas (flour or corn)

Quesadilla Cheese (or other good melting cheese) Grated

Sour Cream

Butter

Heat up a skillet so it is nice and hot, I prefer a cast iron pan. While the pan is heating up prepare your quesadilla for the pan. On top of one tortilla I add a layer of cheese , some of the chicken and tomato with out the liquid, and a bit more cheese and top off with the second tortilla.

Once the pan is hot add enough butter so that when it melts it covers the pan, add your prepared quesadilla to the pan.

Cook until the first side is browned and then flip and cook the other side until brown.

Remove from the pan onto a cutting board, while the cheese is still hot lift up the tortilla and add sour cream and flip the whole quesadilla and let it sit until it cools slightly.

Cut into 4 pieces and enjoy!

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An Introduction of Sorts

shabushabu

As a kid I remember the watching, with unbreakable attention, the early days of the food network; I was taken aback by all that you could do with food and the techniques behind it. When Good Eats came on the scene, it immediately became a favorite; learning the reasons behind why things happen just enhanced my love of cooking. When not entranced by the TV I would pursue my parents cookbooks and come up with fake menus of what I would serve if I were to have a restaurant or cook for my family. I even took my love of food as far as organizing and cooking a dinner of Tomato prepared many different ways for my whole family.

As I grew older my love of cooking and food never faltered. While attending college in Portland, Oregon my roommate and I would go on hour long bus rides, transferring multiple times to get to some restaurant we wanted to try. We would cook ourselves dinner after our classes that ended close to 10pm not caring we were eating at midnight. Without having ever attempting it before we volunteered to host Thanksgiving for our friends and I roasted a Turkey for the first time with out even flinching at the thought and I came out beautifully. We loved eating and outside of school and work that is what we occupied our time with.

But as all things must college came to an end and I moved to New York City in search of work and to live the dream. And in moving to New York and a chance trip to Maine, for work (of all random places), my love affair with food has reached a fever pitch. The wide variety of cuisines and high quality restaurants only a train ride away has forever changed my outlook on food. And with this blog I hope to in some way catalog and capture my adventures in the kitchen and eating out in this great city that I live in and abroad.

And while I may be late to the foodie party I haven’t been around long enough to get here any sooner, so please join me on my adventures in this great big world of food.

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