Honey Garlic Ginger Beef Jerky

I am a sucker for jerky. It used to be that I was the only one who understood the allure of jerky but evidently that’s changed. I’m seeing so much love for jerky lately that it just warms my heart.

Jerky is the perfect food, in my book. It’s portable, it’s shelf stable, it’s loaded full of protein. Awesome for after a work out.

See? Perfect food.

I actually had it for breakfast this morning. Don’t judge.. you just jealous.

I usually get an eye round roast when I see it on sale and clean it up myself with my knife.

Big eye round roast

Big eye round roast

My idea of perfect jerky is toothsome.. meaning, I have to really rip into it and CHEW. So for that I cut long strips with the grain of the meat.

Long skinny meat strips about 1/4 inch thick

Long skinny meat strips about 1/4 inch thick

I usually brine my jerky meat in a apple jalapeno mixture, but this time I wanted to try something a bit sweeter.

Lloyd has the best honey.. hands down

Lloyd has the best honey.. hands down

So I chopped up some fresh garlic and ginger and poached it in some honey and water until it was soft.
And then I added these:

I'm such a whore for Penzeys

I’m such a whore for Penzeys

Then I pureed the crap out of it with my boat motor

Finished Marinade

Finished Marinade

And let that cool.. then I smooshed it all over the meat.

Smoosh

Smoosh

Popped that into the fridge overnight and in the morning, I spread it out over my dehydrator trays and let it run at 160 degrees for about 9 hours

finished-slice

You want some? Lemme give you the recipe:

Honey Garlic Ginger Beef Jerky
 
Honey, ginger and garlic combine for a savory sweet, Asian inspired beef jerky
Ingredients
  • 4-5 pounds of lean beef, cut into strips
  • ½ cup of honey
  • 6 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 inch chunk of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
  • ¼ cup canning or Kosher salt
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ tsp ground cardamom
  • ⅛ tsp ground cloves
Instructions
  1. Put the honey, garlic and ginger is a small sauce pot and heat until just boiling. Reduce heat to a simmer.
  2. Add salt and water to the pot, stirring to dissolve the salt.
  3. Simmer for about 15 minutes or until the ginger and garlic are soft.
  4. Add the cardamom and cloves and immediately remove from heat. Stir
  5. Puree with immersion blender, regular blender or food processor.
  6. Allow marinade to cool.
  7. Add the marinade to the meat and smoosh it with your hands to get every piece covered.
  8. Put the meat mixture in a plastic bag and allow to marinate over night.
  9. Put the strips of meat on a dehydrator tray and dehydrate at 160 degrees until dry but still bendy. About 8-9 hours.
Notes
so, this really stuck to my dehydrator trays because I let it cool on the trays. Don't do that.

Roasted Cauliflower Garlic Soup

I have had a bulb of fennel in my fridge since I cut the fronds off to make Gravlax. I have been trying to think of something to do with it for a while.

Also, I’ve been really craving soup. It’s all Melicious’s fault because I made her Sweet Potato Soup with Bacon… twice. And now all I can think about is creamy, thick, pureed veggie soups.

So I got this idea. I would roast it with some other stuff and puree it. You know… Just toss some stuff together and hope for the best. Honestly, the last time I tried that I got some curried broccoli soup that neither of us ate..

Because it sucked.

This time I decided to use an entire head of garlic.

Roasted-Garlic

This soup does not suck. In fact it’s pretty fucking awesome.

So awesome that I took a bazillion pictures so instead of just posting all the pics, I am giving you a video of all the pics. With music.. punk like music.. because this soup rocks that hard.

5 from 1 reviews
Roasted Cauliflower Garlic Soup
 
A simple but flavorful roasted veggie soup
Ingredients
  • 1 head of Cauliflower
  • 1 celery root (about a pound)
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 bulb of fennel
  • 1 quart of chicken stock
  • Olive oil
  • salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  2. Line two sheet pans with aluminum foil
  3. Cut the fronds off the fennel and cut into wedges
  4. Cut the cauliflower into florets
  5. Peel and cube the celery root
  6. Cut the top off the garlic
  7. Spread the veggies out over the sheet pans and drizzle with olive oil. Toss with your hands to coat. Make sure you get a good amount on that garlic head. Salt and pepper the veggies
  8. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Stir the veggies and flip the garlic head over. Roast for 15 more minutes.
  9. Smoosh the garlic out of it's skin. It should slide right out.
  10. Put all the veggies in a stock pot and cover with the chicken stock and a quart of water.
  11. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 30 minutes, or until all the veggies are tender.
  12. Puree your soup, season with additional salt and pepper and enjoy!
Notes
I happened to have rosemary salt on hand so that is what I used to season the salt. You could also add a touch of fresh rosemary to deepen the flavors

Roasted Pepper White Bean Salad

Although it’s only March, today really felt like Summer was upon us. .. we are having some bizarrely warm weather… and summer just screams cold salad to me. Now I like a tossed salad as much as the next gal, but let’s be honest.. it’s a lot of chewing for not a lot of satisfaction. I don’t often take the time for a nice leisurely lunch which, in my opinion is required for a big ol salad.

This recipe (adapted from this Roasted Red Pepper Pasta Salad recipe) makes for a super satisfying, filling lunch or a hearty snack. I like to make up a batch and have it all week.

If you really aren’t into roasting your own peppers, you could use jarred peppers but honestly they just don’t taste the same, so suck it up and give this a shot.

I like to use multi colored peppers.. they tend to be sweeter and make you salad all pretty and stuff

Cut your peppers in half and remove the seed. Put them cut side down on a foil lined sheet pan. Put your unpeeled garlic cloves on there too.

Yeah, you are gonna want to cover your sheet pan with foil.

Put them under the broiler for about 5-10 minutes or so. They should look like this.

Not burnt.. ROASTED… srsly.. those black bits are what you want

Put the peppers in a metal bowl and cover the bowl with that same foil you had on that sheet pan. Let those suckers sit for a few minutes while you smoosh the garlic out of it’s skins. Sprinkle liberally with salt and smash it with the flat of your knife.

Looks disgusting.. tastes fantastic.

Take the foil off the bowl of peppers.. the skins should come right off with a bit of a tug.

Eeek! nekkid peppers!

Whisk the garlic paste with olive oil and lemon juice

I have nothing clever to say.. it’s whisking.. enuff said

Slice the peppers, salami, and toss in the dressing. Drain and rinse the white beans and add to the mix with the itty bitty mozzarella balls.

Enjoy!

5 from 1 reviews
Roasted Pepper White Bean Salad
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 4 multi-colored peppers, halved and seeded
  • 4 cloves of garlic, in skins
  • 2 15 oz cans of white beans, drained and rinsed
  • a hunk of your favorite stick of salami, cut in slices and then quartered. I'm a Boar's Head fan,myself.
  • 8 oz container of mozzarella pearls, drained.
  • ⅓ cup good olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt
  • Fresh Basil (optional)
Instructions
  1. Put the peppers and garlic cloves on a foil lined sheet pan and broil until charred, about 5-10 minutes
  2. Once charred, put the peppers in a bowl and cover.
  3. Smoosh the garlic out of it's skin and onto the cutting board. Sprinkle with salt and smash with the flat of your knife and make a paste.
  4. Put the olive oil and lemon juice in a bowl and whisk in the garlic paste.
  5. Remove the skins from the peppers and slice.
  6. Toss all the ingredients together and chill. Add sliced basil if desired.

Crockpot Pernil

Years ago, I used to work in an office that was much more culturally diverse.  This one is rather “pale”.  ~sigh~

At any rate, back before The Food Network was showing people how to cook things that were not your basic American Staples, before there were cooking competitions on TV every 20 minutes and before the Chef became the New Rock Star, ethnic food in my neck of the woods was Chinese Take Out.

Unless, we had an office party.

Office parties were where I first tried “Sweet potato pie” and Arroz con gandules and the fantabulous garlicky tender pork dish that had a Puerto Rican name.

I had no idea what it was.  I even dated a guy who was of Puerto Rican descent.. and his mom made us gandules and pasteles (which I did *not* like.. and I felt so bad because she worked so hard at them).

But I hadn’t had that pork dish again .. until Knitting Knoobie said that she was making Pernil for dinner.  I was all “whut?” and she told me and I was like YAY!!! that’s it!!!

I did a little digging around the web and found a recipe by The Rican Chef.   Nothing against her method, but I was not about to tie up my oven all night when I had a crock pot that would do the job.  I made this a few times an tweaked it a bit here and there.
It’s really pretty easy.. you chop up some garlic with oregano, salt and pepper

Chopped garlic and spices

Prep your pork by stabbing it full of holes

Pork shoulder

Fill those holes with the garlic, sprinkle with adobo and shove in crock pot.

In the crock pot

Voila!

Pernil and Greens

ok.. it’s not the best picture…

Pernil with greens and black beans

Pernil with greens and black beans

Eh.. whatever.. it’s good.. trust me.

4 from 1 reviews
Crockpot Pernil
 
A Slow Cooker way to make this classic Puerto Rican Dish.
Ingredients
  • 5 lbs boneless pork shoulder (butt roast, picnic roast)
  • 12 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp mexican oregano
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp adobo (I used Penzey’s salt free)
Instructions
  1. Peel the garlic.
  2. Put the garlic, black pepper, oregano and olive oil in a small food processor and chop it all up to bits. (If you don’t have a food processor that will deal with the small amount, just mince the garlic and combine everything together.)
  3. Rinse the pork shoulder and pat dry. Remove the large layer of fat that sits on the top of the shoulder. There is plenty of fat marbled within the meat so you really don’t need this ½ inch thick layer.
  4. Take a paring knife and stab some holes throughout the pork. I usually make an X and then shove my finger in there to widen the hole.
  5. Shove the garlic mixture into these holes. Don’t worry if some ends upon the outside of the pork. It is not a big deal
  6. Sprinkle the adobo seasoning over the pork and put it into your crockpot.
  7. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or high for 3-5 or until pork is tender.
  8. Remove the pork from the crockpot and either cut up and serve or cut up and put it back in the crockpot to sit in the juices for a bit. (this is my preferred option
Notes
I've had some people tell me that they take the pork out and shove it in the oven to get the crispy bits that really make pernil. I haven't tried this myself but I think it's worth a shot.

Two posts in one week and a recipe

I’m looking forward to training tomorrow.  I’ve been trying to eat better so that I have  energy and stamina for class!

Trying to plan recipes for the week,  we found this one.

Pasta with ChickPeas and Garlic Sauce

But of course, I couldn’t leave it alone and made a few revisions. I had a few slices of prosciutto left over and I wanted to use them. So I did.. and I added some peas to offset the badness.

Here is my version of Pasta with Chickpeas.

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, rough chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained (garbanzo beans)
  • 1 (14 ounce) can reduced-sodium fat-free chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked medium pasta shells (about 6 ounce)
  • 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 tablespoon  lemon juice
  • 2 slices of prosciutto, rolled and rough chopped (use scissors: trust me)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup of frozen peas
  • 3 tablespoons shredded parmigiano-reggiano cheese

Directions

Heat oil in a large skillet  over medium heat.  Add chopped  garlic, saute 1 minute. Add salt, pepper, chickpeas and broth, bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.

While garlic mixture simmers, cook pasta in boiling water 9 minutes, drain well.

Place chickpea mixture in a food processor and process until smooth. It will be thick. Don’t Panic.

In the same skillet, saute proscuitto until mostly crispy.  Toss in halved tomatoes, lemon juice and parsley.  Saute 1 minute.  Add sauce.   Add either more broth or water to thin to desired consistnecy.  Add frozen peas and heat through.

Add pasta.

Serve topped with cheese.

Enjoy!