Saturday, September 29, 2012

Garlic Crispy-Soft Butter Potatoes


These are Garlic Crispy-Soft Butter Potatoes. I know it has been a while since I have been able to post because I have been happily settling into a new job (Hooray!), so I thought I would kick back off with a bang. These potatoes are always a hit because they are so homey but decadent. I almost follow this recipe card:

 
Step One: Place the potatoes in a pot of well-salted room-temperature water, and bring to a boil.
 
Why do you start cooking potatoes in cool water rather than dropping them into already boiling water? I really don't know, but I do know that that is what all of those cooking show people keep saying about cooking potatoes...so it must be true.  
Step Two: Meanwhile, chop up some garlic and onion. (I think I actually usually chop up a little more garlic than this.)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Continue boiling the potatoes until they are tender and easily pierced with a fork.












Step Three: Drain the potatoes.
 
I put them back in the hot pot after draining them so the excess water will evaporate off... because I know that I am terrible at draining potatoes!
 
Set aside.




Step Four: Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. 
   











Add oil, and continue to heat until foamy.












Step Six: Add onion and garlic, and cook until soft.  










Step Seven: Add potatoes and salt. Leave the potatoes alone until crispy on one side (about 5 - 6 minutes). 











Step Eight: Turn over the potatoes with a spatula, and then continue frying until golden.
 
You can add black pepper, too, if you want. Sometimes I do. Sometimes I don't. It all depends on whether or not I remember it. 







Here they are. Crispy-soft, garlic, buttery potato deliciousness. There's a bit of crispness on the outside, and then a pillowy-soft potato middle all bathed in the taste of butter and garlic and oh my gosh go make these now!
 



I just thought that you should see how beautiful these are with Slow Cooker Saucy Country Ribs. Aren't they beautiful together? Two decandently tender foods together on one plate....but not for long :). Enjoy!

Garlic Crispy-Soft Butter Potatoes
4 large Yukon Gold Potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
3 T. canola oil
3 T. butter

1 small onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 t. salt + additional salt for water
1/4 t. pepper, optional
 
Place the potatoes in a pot of well-salted room-temperature water. Bring to a boil. Continue boiling until tender and easily pierced with a fork. Drain and set aside.
 
Heat butter and oil together in a large skillet over medium heat. When foamy, add onion and garlic, and cook until soft. Add potatoes and salt. Leave the potatoes alone until crispy on one side (about 5 - 6 minutes). Turn over the potatoes with a spatula, and then continue frying until golden. Sprinkle with pepper if desired.
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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Stay Tuned...

I got a new job last Monday! I will be teaching 5th grade this year. Being thrown into a class six weeks after school starts is overwhelming. I promise I have recipes to post. I just haven't had time to write them out this week. But stay tuned! They are coming soon!
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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Slow Cooker Saucy Country Ribs


I was surfing my beloved Pinterest one day, and I saw a recipe that looked interesting. I clicked the link, and it didn't lead directly to the recipe. I had to scroll through several posts to find the recipe I had seen on Pinterest. I was just scrolling along when lo and behold - I see my recipe for Perfect Chicken! There it was - word for word - with a slight nod to Pinterest and no credit to me whatsoever. I was extremely flattered that this person liked my recipe enough to post it on her own blog, but I was also a bit offended that there was no credit to me or my blog...at all. So, I just left a sweet little comment that said, "It might be nice if you gave a little credit to the original author." I checked back after a few days, and there was still no credit to me. Oh well, I tell that tale to say this - this is another recipe that I have made for years, that I know that I originally found on the Internet, and that I have no idea exactly where I found it. I do know that I adapted it slightly, anyway, but I hate it when I cannot give some credit to someone!
 
These country ribs have such a full body of flavor, and they couldn't be easier. They come out so tender that they fall apart if you just look at them, and the sauce is to die for. Try them! You'll like 'em! I almost follow this recipe card. Almost. You should look at the recipe at the end of the post for the way I actually make these :).

Step One: Make the sauce. Chop up some garlic and throw it into a bowl.
 
Ok, so you don't have to throw it. I tend to entertain myself as I cook. What's more fun than throwing pieces of garlic into a bowl on the other side of the counter? Just kidding. I am super clumsy in the kitchen. A post that attests to this fact should be coming soon.


Add brown sugar, celery salt (The celery salt does some kind of magic that is totally unpredictable. I cannot explain it!)...








...Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar...










...teriyaki, and ketchup...










...and then stir it all up! Set aside.










These are country ribs. They are boneless pork ribs. Well, I don't know if they are really ribs or if they are some other cut of meat cut into thick strips. I just know what it says on the package.
Thank you to everyone who endures my babbling non-explanations.





Step Two: Season both sides of the ribs with salt, garlic salt, and pepper.









Step Three: Quarter an onion.
 
I'm going to tell you how I quarter an onion. Is it the right way? It works for me!
 






First, cut off the ends of the onion.









Stand the onion up on one of the now flat surfaces.









Cut the onion in half, and peel the outer skin off the onion.










Lay the onion halves down on the flat.











Cut each of the halves in half.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ta-da! You have quartered an onion. If I could give you a treat through the screen, I would.

 










Step Four: Preheat your crockpot. If you don't you will get little cracks all in your crockpot...see? This crockpot still works; it just isn't as cute as it used to be.







Step Five: Put enough oil to coat the bottom of a large skillet. Heat the oil to med-high heat. When hot, add the country ribs. Brown on both sides. (They will still be raw in the middle.)








Step Six: As you take the ribs out of the oil, put them in the crockpot. Add the onion quarters to the top. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Step Seven: Pour the sauce evenly over the top.











Step Eight: Cook on low 8 - 10 hours. I usually put them in before I leave for school in the morning, and they are done by the time we are ready for dinner at night. 














When they are done, they look like this.











YUM! Look at that beautiful pile of fall-apart, saucy pork goodness. 










This recipe never leaves any leftovers either. Enjoy!











Slow Cooker Saucy Country Ribs
Click here for printable version
1-1/2 - 2 lb. country-style pork ribs
1 large onion
, quartered
1/2 t. garlic salt
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
canola oil
1/3 c. teriyaki
1 T. Dijon mustard
1 t. minced garlic
1 t. celery salt

1/2 c. ketchup
3 T. brown sugar
2 T. apple cider vinegar


First, make the sauce: In a small bowl, stir together teriyaki, Dijon mustard, minced garlic, celery salt, ketchup, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar. Set aside.
 
Preheat crockpot to low. Add enough oil to a large skillet to coat the bottom, and heat to med-high heat. When hot, add the country ribs, and brown on both sides. (They will still be raw in the middle.) As you take the ribs out of the oil, put them in the crockpot. Add the onion quarters, and then pour the sauce evenly over the top. Cook on low 8 - 10 hours.
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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Wok-less Mongolian Beef


I found this recipe on Pinterest. It is an ever-so-slightly modified version of Pink Bite's Mongolian Beef. When I saw the picture and recipe, I expected that it would be pretty good. It wasn't pretty good. It was an absolute restaurant-quality, flavor-explosion kind of fantastic. I cannot overemphasize how amazing this dish is. AMAZING.
 
The original version calls for a wok. I do not own a wok. I watch the cooks at my favorite Chinese restaurant use woks sometimes, and if what I have observed is any indication of typical wok behavior (hahaha...wok behavior sounds funny...like a mythical creature or something), then I do not need to use one. Super hot moving cookware is probably not the best for the self-proclaimed and newspaper-endorsed clumsiest cook ever. So... this is Wok-less Mongolian Beef. It may not be the "correct" way to make it, but it is the way I make it...and it is fantastically delicious. Here is the recipe card. I do actually follow this one:
 

Step One: This is flank steak. I cut this whole thing in half lengthwise first...









...and then cut into 1/4 in. strips against the grain.












Step Two: In a large skillet, pour in 1 T. canola oil, and top the oil with the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Bring the pan up to med-high heat.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Step Three: When the garlic begins to sizzle,...

...add soy sauce, water, and brown sugar. Cook the sauce about 2 minutes more...











...or until it looks like this,...











...and then transfer to a small bowl. Set aside.











Step Four: Rinse and dry the skillet that you used to make the sauce.
 
Why actually wash something?! Or dirty another pan?






Ok, here's the set up (from left to right): A paper plate for cooked beef strips, the skillet, (some random, unrelated pot in the background)...








...(still going to the right from where I left off at the random pot) a plate of cornstarch with a strainer behind it.






...(still going to the right from where I left off at the plate of cornstarch) a stack of paper towels, and the beef strips. FYI: The bowl of sauce is also in the background.
 
Why I showed you the set-up from left to right? I do not know, because I totally go from right to left in this process. Bless my heart.
 
Bless My Heart - The sweet Southern way to say "What an idiot I am."  

Step Five: Lay some of the beef strips on paper towels...








...top with another paper towel, and press out the moisture. Repeat with remaining beef strips and paper towels.








Step Six: Working with a few beef strips at a time,










...coat the strips in cornstarch.











Step Seven: Put the strips in a strainer, and shake off the excess cornstarch.









Step Eight: Add just enough canola oil to coat the bottom of the pan, and then bring it up to med-high heat. Brown the strips on both sides...








 ...browning in batches as necessary.










As they finish browning, remove them to a paper towel-lined plate.
 
Not Pictured: Drain the pan of excess oil.







Step Nine: Add the strips and the sauce back to the pan, stirring to coat, and then cook over medium heat 2-3 minutes.








Step Ten: Garnish with green onions. I just cut them with scissors over the pan :).









Oh, yum, yum, yum. I wish I still had some...










...but there are NEVER any leftovers of this dish!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Wok-less Mongolian Beef
1 lb. flank steak
1/2 - 3/4 c. cornstarch
1/4 t. powdered ginger
1 T. garlic,
chopped
1/2 t. red pepper flakes
1/2 c. water
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. soy sauce
3 green onions,
chopped
canola oil
 
First, make the sauce: In a large skillet, pour in 1 T. canola oil, and top the oil with the garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Bring the pan up to med-high heat. When the garlic begins to sizzle, add soy sauce, water, and brown sugar. Cook the sauce about 2 minutes more, and then transfer to a small bowl. Set aside.
 
Cut the flank steak against the grain into 1/4 in. wide strips. Make sure the strips are all very dry. Coat the strips in cornstarch. Put the strips in a strainer, and shake off the excess cornstarch.
 
Rinse and dry the skillet that you used to make the sauce. Add just enough canola oil to coat the bottom of the pan, and then bring it up to med-high heat. Brown the strips on both sides, browning in batches as necessary.
 
Drain the pan of oil. Add the strips and the sauce back to the pan, stirring to coat, and then cook over medium heat 2-3 minutes. Garnish with green onions.
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