Taco empanadas with taco dipping sauce


An empanada is a delicious thing. There are many variations on filling all over the world. The originated from the Ilberian peninsula in the middle ages during the time of the Moor invasion. I have a favorite, and that’s Taco Empanadas.

30 cups of all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoon of salt
3 3/4 lb of unsalted butter cut into 120 pieces, fresh out of the fridge
20 eggs (reserve half for the egg wash)
2 1/2 to 3 cups of water
Egg wash: 10 egg whisked with 10 tablespoon milk

Add flour and salt into a bowl and mix by hand. Add eggs, butter, and water and if you wish it some seasoning, I add cayenne or dried pablano pepper powder and begin mixing until a ball of dough forms. You don’t need to knead. Roll this spiced dough out flat and cut into 200 (yes 200) small circles using a small plate. I refrigerate these stacking them with wax paper between them. Now we make the filling.

5 pounds shredded lettuce
7 1/2 pounds ground beef
2 1/2 pounds chorizo sausage
4 cans of refried beans
10 white onions diced
20 tablespoons paprika
10 tablespoons cumin
5 tablespoons black pepper
10 tablespoons hot sauce (I use this stuff Red Lightning Hot Sauce)
10 tablespoons olive oil

To make the filling get a 20 inch campfire skillet screaming hot and add the oil, ground beef, chorizo, onions, paprika, cumin, black pepper, hot sauce, and let cook 10 minutes stirring, then add in the refried beans and lettuce and stir another 10 minutes until well blended. Remove from heat and let’s fill our empanadas.

Once the mix is cooled we’re ready to start. Spoon some of the mix in the middle of the dough, and fold over pressing out air pockets and brush the edges with the egg wash. Crimp the edges with a fork, I find 1-2 tablespoons of mixture works. Repeat this until you got 200 filled empanadas and no more mixture left over, it’s fine if you do reward yourself. Then we make our dipping sauce before we fry them.

To make our dipping sauce we need: 2 tubs of sour cream, and 4 jars of salsa. The salsa I use can be found here Smoky salsa. Just mix the sour cream into the salsa until well blended with a spoon, leave the spoon on a plate next to the dip, it’s usually a bit too thick for dipping so it’s more of a topping but yummy none the less, it should be deep pinkish red in color.

Now we fry our empanadas. Fry in oil until brown in batches of 5 at a time. Remove once golden with a slotted spoon and let drain on paper towels. Absolutely delicious.

My country cube steak with saw mill gravy for a crowd


I’ll let you in on a secret. I love red meat. Being a guy one could easily know that but I love bison cube steak when I can find it for a true country breakfest.

Mix together flour, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Dredge the Cube steak in the flour mix on both sides and set aside until all the yummy cube steaks are covered in flour. In a large camp fire skillet, add oil, garlic, and onions. When onions are clear remove from pan along with garlic. Add butter into pan and allow to melt. Once melted add in cube steaks. Watch them carefully, when the sides get a golden hay like color flip them and give them 1 more minute before removing from the pan. Turn off heat and remove grease by pouring through a fine mesh screen over a funnel into a mason jar.  This filters out the solid particles from the grease. Set this remaining grease aside in the mason jar. It will keep in the fridge for upto a week.

Take 9 tablespoons of this grease, 9 tablespoons of flour, 3 cups of half and half, and 1 pound crumbled breakfest sausage. Sift the flour into this remaining grease in the same pan you fried the cube steak. Stir it until it gets brown, I like a straw brown color. Pour in the half and half slowly while stirring constantly. Add in crumbled breakfest sausage, and stir until it’s thickened. At this point I add black pepper, about 3 tablespoons.  The breakfest sausage can be anything. Jimmy dean is good, or what ever you happen to have.

Serve with a side of mashed potatoes.

To the dads, grilled mac and cheese


Well father’s day is upon us. With this in mind I thought of a simple yet delicious recipe that dads would love. I’m thinking  grilled mac and cheese with chorizo, fire roasted onions, chiles and corn, maybe some left over on some grilled bread for a great sandwich!
Father’s day grilled mac and cheese

Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
2 cups (about 8 ounces) elbow macaroni
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 ears sweet corn, shucked
1 medium red onion, peeled and quartered
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus 2 tablespoons butter
Freshly ground black pepper
6 to 8 New Mexican green chiles or Anaheim or California peppers, or
2 to 4 poblano peppers
1 yellow bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 shallot, minced
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups half-and-half, light cream, or milk
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 cups (about 8 ounces) grated smoked cheese, preferably smoked Cheddar, smoked pepperjack, or equal amounts of both
1/4 to 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs (preferably homemade)
6 ounces crumbled spanish chorizo

A cast iron skillet, aluminum foil roasting pan or drip pan, or grill-proof baking dish (about 9 by 12 inches), sprayed or brushed with oil; 2 cups wood chips or chunks (preferably hickory); soaked for 1 hour in mock burbon/water to cover (1 cup water to 1 tablespoon vanilla makes 1 cup mock burbon), then drained

Bring 8 quarts of lightly salted water to a rapid boil in a large pot over high heat. Add the macaroni and cook until al dente, about 7 to 8 minutes. Drain the macaroni in a large colander, rinse with cold water until cool, and drain again. Toss the macaroni with the oil to prevent sticking.

Set up the grill for direct grilling and preheat to high.

When ready to cook, lightly brush the corn and onion with half of the melted butter and season with salt and pepper. Place chorizo in a small metal pan and brown after putting the corn and onion on the hot grate and grill until nicely browned, 2 to 3 minutes per side (8 to 12 minutes in all) for the corn, and 3 to 4 minutes per side (9 to 12 minutes in all) for the onion, turning with tongs as needed. Add the chiles and peppers to the hot grate and grill until the skins are charred, 3 to 5 minutes per side (6 to 10 minutes in all) for the New Mexican chiles, or 3 to 5 minutes per side (12 to 20 minutes in all) for the poblano peppers, and 4 to 6 minutes per side (16 to 24 minutes in all) for the bell peppers. Transfer the corn, chorizo and onion to a cutting board and let cool.

Transfer the grilled chiles and bell peppers to a baking dish and cover with plastic wrap. Let the peppers cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes (the steam trapped by the plastic wrap helps loosen the skin from the peppers). Scrape the skin off the cooled peppers, then core and seed them.

Cut the corn kernels off the cobs using lengthwise strokes of a sharp butcher knife. Thinly slice the onion quarters crosswise. Cut the chiles and peppers into 1/4-inch dice.

Melt the 2 tablespoons butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and shallot and cook until soft but not brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the corn kernels and grilled onion, chorizo, chiles, and bell peppers. Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the half-and-half and increase the heat to high. Let the mixture boil for 3 minutes, stirring well; it should thicken. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the mustard and cooked macaroni, followed by the cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste; the mixture should be highly seasoned. Spoon the macaroni and cheese into the cast iron skillet or oiled aluminum foil pan. Sprinkle the top of the macaroni with the bread crumbs and drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter over the bread crumbs.

Set up the grill for indirect grilling and preheat to medium-high. If using a gas grill, place all of the wood chips in the smoker box or in a smoker pouch and run the grill on high until you see smoke, then reduce the heat to medium-high. If using a charcoal grill, preheat it to medium-high, then toss all of the wood chips or chunks, if desired, on the coals.

When ready to cook, place the macaroni and cheese in the center of the hot grate, away from the heat, and cover the grill. Cook the macaroni and cheese until the sauce is bubbly and the top is crusty and brown, 40 minutes to 1 hour. Serve with dad’s favorite beer, a grilled meat that he likes, and some grilled potatoes with gravy. What better way to say we love you dad then a whole meal made on the grill for him?

Maybe slap some on some nice toasted garlic bread for a sandwich.

Porcellum Assum Tractomelinum


Roast Suckling Pig with a Pastry and Honey Stuffing Or Porcellum Assum Tractomelinum in latin.

1 whole suckling pig
3 tbsp freshly-ground black pepper
1 cup honey
2 1/2 cups red wine
2 bayleaves
1.5 lb dried pastry, flaked (They used some stale danishs)

Clean and gut the suckling pig through the neck then set aside. Combine the black pepper, honey, wine and bayleaves in a pan. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, then take off the heat and remove the bayleaf. Work in the crumbled pastry, stirring until the mixture is thick and the blend is smooth. Pour the mixture through the neck of the suckling pig then bind closed with skewers and cover with foil. Sit on a rack in a roasting tin then transfer to an oven pre-heated to 430°F and roast for 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 320°F and continue roasting for 50 minutes per kg, or until the skin is crisp and the meat is thoroughly cooked (check that the meat juices run clear by piercing in the thickest part of the roast). Remove the pig from the oven, cover with foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes. Transfer to a serving dish, carve and serve.

It was very delicious. It was served to me by a greek couple in the neighborhood who invited my babes and I to dinner to thank me for turning a few of their hogs into sausage for them. It was very very good. So good I had to share. It was moist, tender, the stuffing was flavorful and also decently moist.

soppressate sannitiche


preparation technology – lean meats and pork choices are all cut by hand to the tip of a knife: Then you add diced hard fat (two parts of a face and fat) and tanned with salt, whole black pepper and ground. It is stuffed in natural casings. The brawn are kept under weight for a few days and then exposed to smoke from the kitchen in the basement and after for ages.

composition

a). the raw material – Lean pork, pork fat.
b). Aid – salt, pepper

aging – a fortnight in a warm and breezy. (2 weeks is a fortnight.)

seasoning period – two months later in the cellar. After curing, store them to put themselves in fat (lard or oil)

notes

AERMAR not exaggerated in the south that “the country that you are going brawn.” While it is always made with the same basic ingredients ie pork, salt and pepper, brawn and difficult to find consistent taste. The sensory differences are, by local people, claimed as the result of their unique techniques, combos that taste, aroma and shape are constantly called into play. And since we do not know, for example, the taste of a brawn of pasato whose manufacturer could choose between the black pig, red and white, but everyone agreed that, for the meats, the best remaining red and black. He must have had a large head, the snout short and turned up, long ears, eyes small and lively, short, strong legs, large buttocks, belly protruding, square and round body more than long, quiet, inordinately fond of nature, sleeping infrequently. Venice special considerations made on whether to give the boar to Scroffa to “… yet his talent since quand’ha already pregnant belly, but should not let that du coupled times a year, ie in spring and autumn, why not the weak and growing old priest, and does not have the proellini sad “(a. Balbiani, the real treasure of her companions, issues analysis Bologna 1986, P.218). Not so much surprised if the brawn that benefited from such feedstock have been captured in the diaries of foreign visitors ….

Beer can chicken my way


We’ve all had beer can chicken. Well I love my beer can chicken. I have partaken in many different beer can chickens. They are yummy a favorite when tailgating. Unfortunately some are better then others. There is one that I make that just blows the rest completely out of the water. It all begins with the beer. You want a beer that pairs well with chicken and your flavors. Please for the love of god think outside the box. Corona, bud, and michelob are fine but you want to seperate yourself from every other beer can chicken your friends are making. Make sure it’s a good beer. Keep in mind the styles.

Brown ales tend to work best with gamey dishes, beef entrees or brown gravy over chicken. It depends how it works but I’m grilling mine so, any lighter lager or pilsner or brown ale or pale ale will work.

I like to use Brooklyn Brown Ale and Alpine Glacier Lager.

Now you may ask how do I get a beer bottle into a beer can chicken. Well I like to use a funnel. That’s right I have an empty beer can for my chickens.

So this is what we’ll need:

  • 1 can (12 ounces) beer
  • 1 chicken (3 1/2 to 4 pounds)
  • Olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons seasoning (at end)

First we need to marinade over night. To do this mix together the day before

  • 1/8 cup of each beer (1/4 cup total)
  • 2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

If you don’t have a empty can of beer like me, well open a beer pour it out drink it, and put an additional 3 holes in the top. Then pour in 6 ounces of each beer. Remove any thing inside the cavity. I take these and just throw them in a pan and cook off any grease I can get for the gravy.

Now that we’re ready drizzle the chicken with olive oil and rub it all around. In a bowl mix the following:

  • Garlic powder (2 teaspoon)
  • Cayenne, ground (2 teaspoon)
  • Onion powder (2 tablespoon)
  • Oregano, dried (2 teaspoon)
  • Sage, ground (2 teaspoon)
  • Black pepper, freshly ground (2 tablespoon)
  • Paprika (2 teaspoon)
  • Coffee ground fine (2 teaspoon)

Ssshhhh don’t tell anyone about the coffee. Rub this mix all over the chicken front and back over the legs and the wings. Sprinkle a little inside. If you got extra great save it, it’s excellent on steaks.

  • Half pound bacon

I love charcoal grills for this place a aluminum pan in the center of the grill, pile coals evenly on both sides. Light your coals. When the grill gets hot dip a paper towel in olive oil and oil the grill grate. I like to soak cherry wood in brandy a half hour before. Check your coals, with a hand 2 inches above the grate, 1 tomatoe 2 tomatoe OW! usually tells you it’s ready. You’ll want the chicken over the drip pan. Spread the legs of the chicken wide apart. Suck the marinade into an injector and slowly inject into the chicken in several places throughout the chicken. Slowly lower the chicken onto the top of the beer can. Lift the grate and toss your soaked chips onto the coals.Wait until you begin seeing smoke. Sit you chicken onto the grill over the drip pan.

Pull the legs forward to form a tri-pod. Tuck the wings behind the back (called Akimbo) to prevent from burning them. Drape the half pound bacon over the top of the chicken. Close the lid and let the chicken roast 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours. During the cooking process you will have to add you’ll need to add 12 fresh coals per side after 1 hour. If the skin gets to browning too much, tent with foil for the rest of the cooking process. Once done remove carefully off the grill with tongs. Place it on a flat plate and let people awww at it. You can wait for it to cool and then remove the bacon and beer can from it. Though it probably will not last that long.

 

my secret grilled lobsters


The mint makes them really good. Do not tell anyone! It’s our secret
Salt, to taste
8 live lobsters, each 1 1/2 to 2 lb
4 sticks unsalted butter
24 garlic cloves, minced
4 lemons cut into 1/4th slices
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
12 Tbs. minced fresh mint and parsley

 

Bring a large pot three-fourths full of salted water to a boil over high heat. Have ready a bowl of ice water large enough to fit the lobsters.

On a cutting board, use the point of a knife to cut an incision through each lobster head shell about 1 inch from the eyes, pushing down hard through the shell to instantly kill the lobster (yes it’s painless). Immediately plunge the lobsters into the pot and cook for 2 minutes, then transfer to the ice water. When the lobsters are cool enough to handle, split them in half lengthwise. Remove the intestinal vein from the tails, the grain sacs from the heads and any green tomalley from the bodies; reserve any black egg sacs in a small bowl. (You can stuff the head if you’d like with broccoli and cheese after.)

Pour 1/4 cup boiling water over the egg sacs and, using a fork, gently break the membrane to release the roe; it will turn bright red in the hot water. Strain through a sieve and let dry on a paper towel.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the garlic. Season with salt and pepper, then stir in the mint and parsley and 2 Tbs. of the reserved lobster eggs. Keep the garlic-mint butter warm.

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a grill. Brush and oil the grill grate.

Brush the cut side of each lobster half with some of the garlic-mint butter. Place the lobsters, cut side down, on the grill. Cover and grill until the flesh is opaque and firm to the touch, 5 to 6 minutes. Grill the lemon slices over the hottest part of the fire until lightly charred, 1 to 2 minutes per side.

Brush the grilled lobsters with the remaining garlic-mint butter and transfer to a platter. Garnish with the grilled lemon slices and serve immediately.