Fresh Bacon- Hmm, Let’s Make Some Burgers… Part Two

So, at the beginning of the week I finished (quite successfully) my first attempt of making my own bacon- which can be found here. So with fresh bacon, beautiful weather, and having the time to barbecue, of course I’m going to take another crack at type of burgeri with past attempts beinf found here and here.

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In this instance with the bacon imparting a slightly sweet flavor from the pecan woodchips, I wanted to add flavors to accent. I just so happened to have on hand a cheddar infused with cranberries and cinnamon- that seemed like a good place to start having a little tart and a slight spice. Now with sweet and salty ahh, need something a little fat and oily so I made some fresh onion straws and then a vegetable to sort of soak it all in (fresh spinach leaves). And finally, can never leave out the side of homemade potato salad.

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Enjoy.

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Weekend Breakfast: A Simple Omelet

The one thing I am starting to like more and more about the weekends (especially with the weather getting warmer) is just having the time to sit back, relax, and enjoy breakfast. During the week and working in the lab, I do go in a little on the early side- though I like the tradeoff as I get out early to enjoy the afternoon and evening hours, but in turn I miss being able to sit and enjoy a good breakfast.

It has been a while since I just made a breakfast with eggs being the main ingredient (there has been a lot of pancakes, french toast, etc. lately) so we went with omelets this past weekend.

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My Simple Omelet (fed 2 of us with some leftovers for a 1 person quick breakfast):

6 eggs

1/3 cup milk

1/3 cup diced up spinach leaves

2 garlic cloves

1/4 cup grated Cheddar (I used an aged sharp cheddar)

I took all these ingredients, mixed in a large glass bowl and put on the side for the time being (as they only take a few short minutes to cook).

Bacon is bacon- no real special way of cooking, just in  a pan and cook to desired liking (I’m a crispy guy and the wife prefers it a little fatty).

Ahh, apricots (now in season). So I used my paring knife, cut the fruit circular around the pit and popped off the two halves. In the small “crater” I put in a small but of butter and sprinkled a little brown sugar. These were then put on the baking sheet and put in the oven at 385 for about 20-25 minutes.

When those were close to the end, just poured the omelet mixture into a pan and cook til done. I then placed this over some bok choy I sauteed after the bacon.

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Enjoy.

A Mixed Cream of Vegetable Soup

I always enjoy going to a produce market as in most instances there is a variety of vegetables you do not normally see in the grocery store and there are typically a lot of very great prices. And in times like this, I get a tad overzealous and have more than I know what to do with so I start to try different combinations and types of meals and thus I came across an interesting soup combination: Cream of Broccoflower and Asparagus with sweet onion and lemongrass- topped with mild cheddar and sauteed broccolini.

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You can choose any stock you want as a base, but since yesterday I had made 5 quarts of fresh chicken stock, I went with that. I started off by pouring in a little olive oil and sauteed the sweet onion along with the lemongrass. I diced up the broccoflower and asparagus into smaller pieces and added them to this mix.

I let that cook for a few minutes and then added in 5 cups of stock and 5 cups of warm water and brought to a simmer. I then put the lid on the stock pot and let it cook for an hour or so.

At this point, I proceeded to add in 1 and half cups heavy cream and put the lid back on again. In a separate pan I sauteed some broccolini which I would later on put as sort of an edible garnish on the soup along with the cheddar.

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At the two hour mark, I took out my immersion blender and blended the whole thing right in the stock pot (saves time and effort of transferring to a blender/mixer etc. and doing it that way. I then poured the soup into the bowl tossed in the broccolini and some shredded cheddar.

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Enjoy.

Hanger Steak with a Shrimp Topping, Brussel Sprouts, and Potatoes au Gratin

Last night was kind of a mid-week celebration for Jenn’s birthday (just the two of us) as the upcoming weekend we are having a joint birthday celebration with her brother-in-law and last weekend was somewhat similar when we went down to Atlantic City (love restaurant week). So I figured somewhere in the middle I would do my own thing. Since you can never go wrong with steak, or shrimp- or why not just use a little of both, here is dinner:

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The steak I had initially marinated in some sugar, tequila, chile powder, and some worsteshire sauce. I seared it in the pan and used a little bit of honey-brown sugar bbq sauce to make a nice “sticky” coating. The shrimp I did in a oil-soy based combination along with some fresh chopped garlic and ginger.

For the first side, I cut the brussel sprouts in half, steamed them, and ran under cold water to stop the cooking process. I then took some oil, butter, rosemary, and sage, and tossed in the bruseel sprouts and gave them a nice saute until just starting to brown on the outer layer.

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For the second side, i busted out my Kobra V-slicer to make nice thin potato slices. I first poured in some oil and heavy cream into the bottom of th dish, then did a layer of potatoes followed by grating some Emmantal cheese, added some rosemary and did this for 4-5 layers (whenever I ran out of potatoes). For some color and added flavor on the top layer I added in some sharp cheddar and some panko breadcrumbs. I then proceeded to bake in the oven at 375 for about 40-45 minutes.

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Enjoy.