Sunday, May 31, 2009

Chili's for Dinner

A quick dinner a Chili's Friday night. Above is the spicy shrimp lime salad with a tomato vinaigrette. It was a nice, light dinner.
My husband ordered the chicken fajita explosion salad, which was a lot like the shrimp salad, and also good eatin'.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Hamburger Experiment

This was the Memorial Day hamburger experiment. They were good, even though I'm not a fan of burgers. I took hints from America's Test Kitchen to make burgers that stayed juicy even when well-done. Add a bread and milk mash to the burger meat. It's just a little bit of addition and you can't tell in the finished product. Mix seasonings into the bread and milk. I used a little minced garlic, salt, pepper, and steak sauce. The patties are formed about 3/4 inch thick and make a depression in the middle to combat the bulging middle burgers get on the grill.

Friday, May 22, 2009

More Homemade Bread

This was my second try at Dutch oven bread. It was very good! I've since read some recipe variations. They're all just as simple, so I'll keep experimenting.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cheese Steak Sandwiches

I had leftover steak from last night, so I turned it into cheese steak sandwiches for dinner today.

I sliced up the steaks like this. I sauteed sliced onions until just browned and limp. I took the onions out of the pan and tossed the steak in to warm it up. I sliced a baguette lengthwise - one that I had in the freezer.

Top with onions and slices of Swiss cheese and then run it under the broiler for a few minutes.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Afternoon Iced Latte

Aren't these pretty shots of espresso? Right from our Starbucks Barista machine that we've had for six years now. We use it a lot and it still works great! I whipped up an iced latte this afternoon. I pulled the shots and then dumped them in a cup and mixed with a tiny bit of caramel sauce. Then I poured it over crushed ice, added just a little bit of milk, and stirred it up.

Come on over if you want one. It only takes a few minutes to make.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

No Knead Dutch Oven Bread Finished

Here is the finished loaf of "No Knead, Dutch Oven Bread." It looks like a sourdough loaf or something from the artisan bakery. It has flavor and a real crust. And no, I didn't make that "X" on the top, it just naturally happened. What a great recipe! Thank you Faith! Here it is:
Dissolve 1/4 tsp active dry yeast in 1 1/2 cups of warm water in a large bowl. Add 3 cups of all-purpose flour and 1 1/2 tsp of salt. Stir into a shaggy, sticky dough. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let it rest for at least 8 hours. I left mine 14 and I think you can leave it even longer.
The surface of the dough will be covered with bubbles when it's ready. Lightly flour a work surface and scoop the sticky dough out. Sprinkle with a little more flour and then fold it over itself a few times. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rest 15 minutes.
Use enough flour to keep the dough from sticking to you, or the counter, and shape it into a ball. Coat a dish cloth with flour and/or cornmeal. Put the dough seam-side down. Lightly flour another towel and cover the dough. Let it rise 1-2 hours until it doubles in size.
Heat oven to 450 with a covered dutch oven inside. Carefully remove the pot when the oven is ready, lift off the lid and turn the dough over into the pot, seam-side up. Shake the pot a little to distribute the dough, don't worry if it looks strange, it fixes itself while cooking.
Cover and bake for about 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake for 15-20 more, until the bread is nice and brown to your liking.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


This shaggy dough under plastic wrap is supposed to be the bread that goes with our dinner Wednesday night. I'm trying out a "No Knead, Dutch Oven Bread" recipe my friend Faith gave to me when she gave me a beautiful red dutch oven. She showed off a beautiful bread she made with the recipe yesterday, so I'm giving it a try. This dough is going to bubble and rise overnight before the next stage.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Jamaican Jerk Chicken

Sliced chicken browned with jerk seasoning. I ran out of my favorite Pampered Chef container of jerk seasoning, so I had to cobble my own together. I used allspice, red pepper flakes, brown sugar, thyme, garlic granules, ground black pepper and a pinch of cinnamon. The brown sugar caramelizes a little. I tossed the chicken with sliced cucumbers, sliced scallions, drained canned corn, rinsed kidney beans, lettuce and shredded pepper jack cheese - and then added a ranch dressing. I sliced corn tortillas thin and quickly fried them in oil to crisp them up and put them on top of the salad.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Kyoto - at the Grill

Dinner at Kyoto in Boise Friday night. It's our favorite sushi place! But it's also a Japanese steakhouse with a grill show. And yes, you can order sushi even if you're sitting at the grill with friends chowing down on steak and shrimp. If you visit, say "hi" to Lee! And Vincent - the sushi chef we LOVE!