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What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Fri Feb 28, 2014 11:35 pm

Very busy in Maine...

A week ago I thawed out a pork loin, cut it into 3 pieces and put it in some TenderQuick to cure. Yesterday I cold smoked it for 5+ hours with apple wood and today sliced it and packed it in 8 oz baggies then vac packed them. That'll keep me in hog heaven for awhile. But I still want to cure another loin for more CB and a butt for buckboard bacon. That should take us through to next winter.

For breakfast tomorrow (today really) a few 1 day old hen fruit, a couple of toasted and buttered slices of English Muffin bread, and few slices of that Canadian bacon. Yummm!

Tomorrow I'll be cold smoking 20+ 8 oz slabs of muenster, swiss, some splotchy yellow and white "jack" (?) cheese, and some cheddar, again smoked with apple.
Edit: the cheese is on and smoking. I counted 28 1/2# slabs.

Cold smoking is just easier when it's cold out so I want to do all of this before spring gets here.

We also made something near 20# of knockoff Taylor Pork Roll the other day. It's a fermented sausage known in the NY/NJ/Phillie area of the country. Basically it's inoculated with a bacillis that gives it a controlled sour taste, then after a time to grow it's pasteurized to kill the bacilli with heat. It wasn't the easiest sausage we ever made, but it gives us a supply of TPR when folks aren't coming up to visit. Now we can scratch that itch with an unlimited supply. For more info, google Taylor Pork Roll. If anyone wants the recipe I used, find it here: http://lpoli.50webs.com/index_files/New ... rkRoll.pdf We let ours cure for 20 hours rather than the time he gives. We held out some and fried up samples to gauge what the sausage in the casings was doing. When it was right to our taste we poached the sausages to kill the bugs.

Then my Sous Vide water bath circulator is being replaced and the new one will be in on Tuesday. I eagerly anticipate it's arrival. The first unit pooped itself but the company is replacing it.

If you don't know what SV cooking is just google it. But in a nutshell it's a relatively new method of cooking and has lately been making inroads into the home. Basically it's cooking at relatively low temperatures for long periods of time. It sounds like it would make for rotten meat, but it's quite safe as long as the meat or whatever is cooked long enough to pasteurize it. One needs to follow established guidelines. Once pasteurized the meat can be eaten immediately or left in the water bath for an extended period of time, days even. What this does is, if you want for example, a medium rare steak, you set your SV circulator for 131-135°F (the temp' for a med rare steak) and the entire steak will be cooked med rare. A tender cut can be eaten immediately after it's fully pasteurized, but a tough cut, say a chuck steak, can be left in the bath for 24 hours and it will get fork tender. Then after it comes out of the bag that it was in the water bath, it's browned on a smoking hot griddle or some such, or browned with a torch to make the maillard reaction for flavor and also to make it look like cooked meat. What one gets is a med rare steak across the entire thickness of the steak. No over cooked steak at the sides and med rare only in the very middle. It also means that timing isn't critical. That rib-eye will be just as good in 2 hours as it will be in 6 hours and can't overcook. Lots of foods are candidates to be cooked by sous vide as long as it isn't too thick. A whole pig wouldn't be a good candidate for SV, a 20# roast wouldn't be either unless you want it in 4 days (just a guess).

More in depth SV info can be found online. I only gave a brief description of it. What it isn't is a technique one just decides to do on ones own with no guidance. Food safety must be maintained and that means no guesswork or "winging it". As with any cooking people can die if it isn't done right.

When the new SV machine comes in I want to cook a few flat iron steaks and I want to make some yogurt for the first cooks. For St. Pattys day I'll probably cook the corned beef in the SV bath.
Last edited by ShadowsDad on Sat Mar 01, 2014 9:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
Brian

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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby jww » Sat Mar 01, 2014 6:24 am

Bryan --- your cooking prowess always impresses me .... that and the fact that you are blessed to live in, what I believe to be the most beautiful of all the US states. Watch out for me and my showshoes in Ocean Park March 14-17. :wink:
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:35 am

Thanks Wendell, I don't cook fancy just wholesome. But I'm nothing as far as cooking goes. I know folks whose abilities I wish I had.

I hope you take this the right way, I really hope you have no use for your snowshoes in March in Maine. This winter has been very long and cold and I'm ready for the celestial switch to be thrown. It's time for climate change.

edit: I gave this some more thought as I was doing chores today. There is method to my madness when I've been posting recipes. First an English Muffin loaf that anyone can make with almost no equipment, just basic stuff. Now SV. Literally anyone can do SV. That's precisely why it was developed; and timing isn't critical. Even eggs can be SV'ed (onto the toasted, buttered slices of English muffin loaf). So anyone who can set a thermostat, read a chart, and keep track of time to within a day (maybe a small exaggeration), and can operate a self igniting torch can cook SV. We're talking hardware from out of the shop. Tim the Toolman could do it.

Anyway, Hence my reference to SV. Anyone can do it if they have better than a room temperature IQ and just a modicum of self motivation. SV can make anyone look like a genius cook.

Hey! My cheese is done smoking! I better get it out of the smoker! As I wrote... "better than a room temp' IQ" . :D I'd forget my head if it wasn't bolted on.
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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Mon Mar 03, 2014 11:50 pm

According to UPS tracking my replacement SV immersion circulator will be here tomorrow! Yay!

The wife and I still need to choose what we'll cook first. I do know that we need to make yogurt for the dogs, but what about an entrée for us on Wednesday? To compound the issue we have a perogi (sp?) making day scheduled with a friend of ours. So much food and only so much intake allowed. I'm thinking the entrée will be either petite tenders or flat iron steaks. But my butane fuel isn't here for the torch, so I'll need to use the MAPP torch I use for sweating pipe. It'll work.

Here's the smoked cheese that I made.
Image
There was a minor fiasco that wasted a bit of it (it melted), but it's a learning curve with the new Amaze-n-smoker unit... What can I get away with? Obviously I found a limitation by melting some of the cheese. But the dogs really love the stuff that doesn't meet our specs. What's pictured is somewhat less than 14# of smoked cheese of various types. That should get us through to the next cold snap. It's delicious. Next time I'll do better without the screw up. Presently I'm eating some of the screwed up cheese, it tastes fine, it's just not pretty. The rest has been vac packed and is in the freezer. The dogs are almost done with theirs.

Gents, let's see pix and read descriptions of what you're cooking.
Brian

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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Wed Mar 05, 2014 12:22 am

The new SansAire Sous Vide Immersion circulator came in today and I have yogurt being made in the bath to make sure it's working. That reminds me, I need to check it. Those 2 qts were finished, so I put in another 2 pre-inoculated and refrigerated qts into the bath. In 10-12 hours they'll be yogurt too. The dogs eat most of the yogurt. A large dollop with every meal.

The new sous vide circulator appears to be working fine.

The old propane torch we kept in the cabinet for thawing door locks and such has been retired and a new Iwatani butane torch has arrived, but I'm still waiting on the fuel for it. Propane is said to impart an off taste to the browned SV food, plus the torch was the pits. Light it with a match, it goes out when inverted, etc., it was long in the tooth and time to retire it to the shop.

In a day or 2 we'll do some flat iron steaks by sous vide. Tomorrow we have a friend coming over to help make and share in perogies. Grandmom used to make perogies for a family of 11, and she did it by herself. We need help to make them for 3. BTW, cheese perogies. If anyone wants the recipe let me know and I'll post it. They are nothing like the frozen version found in the supermarket. Those aren't fit to eat!

So what's cooking at your place?
Brian

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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby Rufus » Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:40 am

Cottage Pie for dins tonight. Yum, yum; SWMBO makes a lovely one.
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:31 am

I love cottage pie! Yumm! It's been years since the wife made the dish.

I have some flat iron steaks in the SV bath (133°F) as I write. For full tenderness they should be in there for 12 hours, but they're safe to eat now 2 hours later, they just won't be fully tender. When we want them, around 1700 or 1800, they should be fine (8hrs in the SV bath). After they come out I'll dry them off and save the bag juices for soup. Then pat them dry, brush them with a small amount of corn syrup, then brown them with a torch. The torch both makes them appealing to the eye, and along with the sugar produces the Maillard reaction that make roasted/grilled food so delicious. I cooked 4 steaks, so the other 2 will stay in the bags, get quick chilled and frozen, refrigerated, whatever, for whenever. Just a quick warm up in the SV bath (133°F) and a minute with the torch should give us quick steaks with almost no work, no drying out, or overcooking.

BTW, no salt in with the steak(s) ever, if you want juicy meat. Brining is OK though. Herbs and spices would have been OK too, but it's simple SV tonight. I want to taste the meat.

I'll edit this with the final results since this is the first time I've ever done it. But I have information from folks whose cooking skills I respect that it's going to be very good since I'm just replicating what I know to work for them. That's another of the beauties of SV... It's easily reproducible. Just follow the steps, temps, and time, and time isn't critical as far as going over. There is a minimum time that it takes to pasteurize the ingredients. Just like you wouldn't eat raw chicken, same with SV.

Image
Millett because I wanted "rice" yet corn. Millett is both in one, sort of. Harvard beets from our garden and canned by us, and the SV flat iron steak. It was fork tender like a really good fillet mignon, but with "grilled" flavor and a perfect medium rare from one edge to the other. Yes, it was browned with a butane torch, but enhanced as written above, except I used dextrose and not corn syrup. I did add a bit of Sodium Bicarb' to again, enhance browning.

SWMBO pronounced it excellent. I thought it was a bit overcooked, but I just like the cow to stop mooing. But I could get to like these. Maybe next time I'll use a 131°F SV bath and the full 12 hrs.

While the SV bath was hot (an excuse) I grabbed 8 vac packed Omaha Steaks burgers that we got for Christmas and cooked them to med rare as well. Yes, with SV you can safely eat a med rare burger. If the meat was good to eat before the SV it'll be good afterward since the process pasteurizes the meat. It won't turn rotten meat into something edible though. I just removed them from the SV bath (midnight) and flash cooled them in a snowbank on the deck. Now they're in the freezer in the shop. When we want a burger with no effort, just warm what we need in the SV then after they come up to temp, then brush on the sugar solution w/sodium bicarb' , hit 'em with the torch and med' rare burgers with no effort.

I'm really going to love SV cooking!

I'm sure there will be more SV cooking before St. Pattys day, but if not the plan is to cook the corned beef SV this year.

Gents, anyone can do SousVide.

What's cooking at your house?
Brian

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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby dosco » Fri Mar 07, 2014 5:17 am

Brian:
Excellent stuff. A friend of mine is into Sous Vide cooking. Perhaps one day I will join the crowd. On the docket of things to purchase is a new grill ... so Sous Vide equipment is out (at least for the time being).

As of late I've been making yogurt and to a lesser extent, bread. I made some paella the other day but I wasn't able to get "good" sausage or mussels ... also the saffron was a bit questionable ... so it looks like I'll have another go of it soon.

My mother is from Brazil and will be returning Stateside in a couple of days ... maybe I need to make some fejoida. Mmmm.

Cheers-
Dave
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Fri Mar 07, 2014 3:02 pm

Dave, what is fejoida? If you make it you need to post a picture.

FWIW, not long ago SV circulators were $1500 and laboratory equipment, and those are still available. But today there are circulators designed for home use, not a lab, and the price is pretty much $200 no matter whose you buy. I got my SansAire through the kickstarter program. Once Scott announced his $200 SV circulator at least one manufacturer dropped the price on their machine from $300 to $200.

Too, I don't know what you're looking for for a grill, but check out Primo. I'm not connected to them in any monetary way. I'm just a user and a moderator on the forum. It's one item of cooking gear that I'd replace in a heartbeat if anything ever happened to it. I think you can get to the Primo forum from the Primo website, but if you want to skip the propaganda... www.primogrillforum.com . It requires membership, but that's just to keep spammers out. Primos aren't inexpensive, but they are worth the price IMO since they do so much.
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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby Rufus » Sun Mar 09, 2014 12:40 pm

Boiled dinner tonight: salted beef, cabbage, pease pudding, carrots, Swede turnip, parsnips and potatoes. It takes forever to make: salt beef has to be soaked for 10 hours and then boiled for 2 hours along with the yellow split peas, following which the veg are added for another hour in 20 minute intervals. It is worth the effort even if I had to get up at 5.30 am to start soaking the beef on the day the clocks were set an hour forward for EST.
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:44 pm

Rufus, that has to be one of my favorite meals! Here in Maine salt cured brisket is almost impossible to find except for St Pattys day when it's "imported" from Boston.

Do you make your own (I'm forced to) or buy it?

For anyone who has never eaten salted beef, it's grey since it doesn't have nitrates or nitrites added, and has a much "meatier" flavor and less chemical tasting than the red corned beef. It's worth doing if you can't buy it already salt cured (corned).
Brian

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Re: What's cooking?

Postby Rufus » Sun Mar 09, 2014 7:23 pm

I get my salt beef from Newfoundland, Chalkers to be precise, although most of the grocery stores here carry it, but it's made locally and not quite the same as that from Newfie.
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Fejoida

Postby dosco » Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:11 am

Brian:
Fejoida is the national dish of Brazil. It is a black bean stew that traditionally uses various cheap leftover bits of meat such as smoked ham hocks, pork noses, etc. Over the years the more affluent folks have put in various sausages and other meats.

It is served over rice with farofa, which is basically ground manioc root that has been toasted on a dry frying pan (I found it on Amazon and it is also called "cassava flour"). Sometimes served with it is something akin to a Mexican pico de gallo (diced tomatoes, onions, cilantro ... but with oil and rice vinegar (I use Japanese rice wine vinegar)) and in Brazil it would be normal to have some sort of cooked greems with it (something like collard greens). For me, the most authentic stuff (based on childhood visits to Brazil) has to have good linguica (Portuguese) sausage ... without linguica it is good but isn't the same as the 'real deal.'

I'll post a recipe. It's easy to make and delicious, and with the magic of the internets one can readily order farofa and linguica from Amazon.

Regards-
Dave

PS: SWMBO doesn't want me to repair the old grill (easily done by replacing the guts) ... so she can spring for whatever sort of grill she wants.
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Mon Mar 10, 2014 2:56 pm

Sounds delicious. I'll pass on the pig snouts though. :-)

Trust me, convince her to get a ceramic for the flavor, and a Primo because it's designed to work with itself. Yeah, I know it's expensive. Have her go to the site and look around, the heck with the manufacturers BS. Have her contact users. We've all been with the other folks... End of all "convincing" on the subject unless asked privately.

SV steak "leftover" (frozen, rewarmed, and torched) for me tonight turned into a huge steak salad. I love good steak, and I love salad. I crave salad in the spring.
Brian

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Re: What's cooking?

Postby brothers » Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:50 pm

Tonight's supper was leftover Taco Soup my wife made on Saturday. Not a gourmet dish, but I like soup and this one's excellent.
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby jww » Tue Mar 11, 2014 5:10 am

Last night our son and daughter in law had us over for her home-made chili over brown rice. Our 2 yr old grand daughter had us all in stitches with her reaction to her resulting flatulence ..... :lol:

The meal was really good -- seriously. The after-dinner show with our grand daughter was probably even better ...... :wink:
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Re: What's cooking?

Postby ShadowsDad » Thu Mar 13, 2014 12:26 am

That's too funny Wendell!

Reminds me of a dog we had. He had allergy problems and that wasn't funny, but he'd go outside to do his thing and had incredible gas. He'd whirl around to see where it came from. That was hysterically funny to see. We wound up making his food to keep away from items he was allergic to and reading labels to keep him safe. But he was worth it. Anyway, that's another story for another time. The monitor is getting a bit blurry right now. Funny how a dog can do that.

Anyway, I decided to play around with the SV a bit more. I did a frozen rib eye. Direct from the freezer (in a vac pack) to the torch in 3 1/2 hours with no work on my part other than the 5 minutes finish. It was delicious, but I actually preferred the flat iron steaks mentioned a bit above. I NEVER thought I would write that. A rib eye is my favorite cherry smoke grilled steak. But not with SV. I had a few fried perogies (homemade) and the rest of the Harvard beets with a portion of the steak.

For St.Pattys day we're planning on SVing some red corned beef for 36 hours at 160°F. It's in the beer/BBQ refrigerator out in the shop to thaw even as I write. I might lower the temp to 150°F to slow down the breakdown of the collagen a bit. I still haven't decided.
Brian

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Or find it here: Italian Barber, West Coast Shaving, Barclay Crocker, The Old Town Shaving Company at Stats, Maggard Razors; Leavitt & Peirce, Harvard Square
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Brazilian Fejoida (black bean stew and rice)

Postby dosco » Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:41 am

My mother flew back from Brazil this past sunday and she's visiting for a few days. She made fejoida last night.

In the pic you can see the black beans, toasted farofa topping (the tan looking grainy stuff), sausage (on the right hand side), the salsa, and because I like spicy stuff a generous helping of Sriracha sauce. You can't really see the white rice underneath unless you look closely.

Mmmm. Tasty.

Regards-
Dave

Took the pic with my iPhone, so it's a tiny bit blurry.
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Latest Bake ... 50% Whole Wheat Sourdough

Postby dosco » Sat Mar 15, 2014 10:45 am

I hosted my first engineering staff meeting and served sourdough bread (that I made at home) for those who wanted a snack, and pizza (from a local pizza shop) for those wanting lunch.

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Re: What's cooking?

Postby brothers » Sat Mar 15, 2014 2:40 pm

Dave, this is a great idea for a staff meeting! I wish my boss lady furnished us with home made bread and pizza when she has staff meetings.
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