Category Archives: Meat

Roasted Marrow Bone

Roasted Marrow Bone

Roasted Marrow BoneThis is a one ingredient recipe. You put the beef bone in the oven, heat and eat. The femur is the largest bone in the steer, and it has the best marrow to bone ratio. My butcher ties a few sprigs of fresh oregano on the bone to make a better presentation in his display case. Even salt and pepper aren’t really necessary, but it can’t hurt.
Roasted Marrow BoneSince marrow is mostly fat use a high heat for a short time, so it doesn’t all melt away. Place the bones in an oven proof dry pan in a 450-degree oven for 15 minutes. Serve with good bread. If you love steak, you’ll love a roasted marrow bone.Roasted Marrow Bone
 

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Sloppy Joe’s Sandwich

Sloppy Joe’s Sandwich

After my post about Sloppy Joe’s Bar in Havana I started wondering if there was any connection between the bar and the Sloppy Joe’s sandwich. I was told that the American Sloppy Joe’s sandwich is an off shoot of the Ropa Vieja (old clothes), served in Sloppy Joe’s Bar in Havana, Cuba. A friend got this Sloppy Joe’s sandwich recipe from a waiter at a restaurant in Key West, Florida. It works for me.

Sloppy Joe’s Sandwich
Ingredients:
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • ½ cup onion
  • ½ cup green bell pepper
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
  • Black pepper and salt to taste
  • 1 15 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • ½ cup Heinz Chili Sauce or ketchup
  • 2 tbsp. brown mustard
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 6 hamburger buns
Roughly chop the onion and green pepper finely or place them in a food processor until well diced. Put the oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Fry the onion and green pepper until some of the moisture evaporates.

Sloppy Joe’s Sandwich

Add the chopped beef, Worcestershire Sauce, salt and pepper. Break up the beef with a spoon as it browns. When the meat is browned, drain the excess grease from the pan.

Set the pan aside and combine the crushed tomato, mustard, brown sugar, and spices in a bowl. Mix well.
Pour the sauce into the pan with the meat and raise the heat to medium-high. When it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.Sloppy Joe’s Sandwich
When it’s done, serve it on a hamburger bun.

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Posole

Posole

Posole is a traditional Mexican dish. It’s a thick soup made with meat and hominy.  Posole You can have your butcher cut a pork shoulder into pieces. The toppings are up to you. Use as many or as few as you like.

PosoleIngredients:
  • 5 or 6 dried ancho chiles
  • 6 cloves garlic (3 crushed & 3 finely chopped)
  • 2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces
  • Salt & black pepper
  • Olive oil for browning
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 15-ounce cans white hominy, drained and rinsed
Remove the stems from the anchos and shake out as many seeds as possible. Put them in a small pot and bring to a boil. Remove them after about 15 minutes, let them cool a bit and then put them and 1½ cups of the liquid in a blender. Add the crushed garlic, and ½ teaspoon salt, and blend until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, pushing the sauce through with a rubber spatula.Posole

Season the pork with salt and black pepper and set aside. Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the pork and cook until lightly browned on all sides. Remove and set aside.
Posole
Add the onion to the pot and cook until soft and translucent. Add the chopped garlic and return the browned meat. Increase the heat to medium high.

Stir in the chicken broth, oregano, bay leaf, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1 cup or more of the chili sauce (depending on your taste). Add enough water to cover the meat and bring to a low boil. Reduce the heat, partially cover, and slowly simmer,  turning the pork a few times, until tender – about 2 hours. Stir in the hominy and continue to simmer, uncovered, about 45 minutes more. Remove the bay leaf. Add some water if the posole is too thick. Check for seasoning.
Posole
Serve the posole with the remaining chili sauce and a topping  of fresh  diced avocado, shredded cabbage, diced onion, sliced radishes, and/or cilantro.

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Venezuelan Liver and Onions

Venezuelan Liver and Onions

Not everyone likes liver. I think that’s more because of the way liver is prepared than what it actually tastes like. Lots of people over cook it, giving it an unpleasant texture. The key to tasty liver is to serve it rare. Fry it quickly in a hot pan for just a few minutes until the exterior is brown. That’s all.

Venezuelan Liver and Onions
Ingredients:
  • 3 tbsps. olive oil for frying
  • 1 to 1 ½ lbs. calf’s liver cut into strips
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 2 tbsps. butter
  • 3 or 4 thinly sliced onions,
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 4 ozs. white wine
  • Fresh parsley, chopped
Pat the room temperature liver dry and season with salt and pepper.

Venezuelan Liver and Onions
Venezuelan Liver and Onions
Heat a large pan over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of oil. When the oil is hot add the liver strips and fry until browned on both sides. Don’t crowd the pan or the liver will steam instead of brown. Remove the liver and set aside on a plate.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil and the butter to the same skillet. Add onions and sauté until soft and translucent. Add the garlic to the onions and sauté and blend for about 1 – 2 minutes. Add the liver back to the skillet and pour in the wine. Let the wine reduce for 2 – 3 minutes. Remove everything to a serving platter, pour the pan drippings over it and sprinkle with parsley.

Venezuelan Liver and OnionsGravy for Venezuelan Liver and Onions – If you’d like, use the pan drippings to make a gravy. Add 2 tablespoons of flour to the drippings. Stir constantly for 1 -2 minutes over medium heat, then add 1 cup of beef stock. Cook and stir until thickened. Serve over liver and onions.

Venezuelan Liver and Onions

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Peposo Beef

Peposo Beef

Peposo Beef

If you like black pepper, you should try Peposo Beef. It’s a simple recipe but with 3 hours of simmering be sure to give yourself time to make it. This is a basic recipe, and you can make some variations. I think the carrots add a bit of color and texture, but you can leave them out. Three hours of simmering soften the pepper corns and make them very edible but if you want you can add them in a spice bag that you can remove before serving. One thing you shouldn’t change is the wine. This is a Toscano dish and should be made with Chianti.
Peposo Beef
Ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 cloves crushed garlic
  • 1 tbsp. black peppercorns
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh herbs (your choice – parsley, thyme, oregano, etc.)
  • 1 – ½ lb. stew beef cut in chunks
  • 2 cups of Chianti
  • 4 or 5 carrots cut in ¾ inch pieces (optional)
Peposo Beef
Heat the oil in a pot on medium heat. Add the crushed garlic cloves and peppercorns and cook for one minute. Add whatever herbs you’re using and then add the meat. Sear until its lightly browned on all sides.
Peposo Beef

Peposo Beef
Add the wine, cover, and simmer on a low heat for about 1 hour. If it gets too dry add some water and continue simmering. Add 4 cups hot water, and the carrots if using, and cover the pot. Allow it to simmer slowly for another 2 hours, checking regularly to see that the liquid has not evaporated completely. Add water if necessary to keep the meat covered.
Peposo BeefAfter 2 hours remove the lid, and let the liquid evaporate until the meat is left in a thick brown juice.

Peposo Beef

Peposo Beef is traditionally served with polenta. I like it with pasta.

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Italian Beef Stew

Italian Beef Stew

When my friend Carlo gave me his mother’s recipe for Italian beef stew, I asked him what made it “Italian.”  He said it was the addition of tomatoes and because his mother came from Genoa.

Ingredients:
  • 1 – 1 ½ lb. stew beef
  • Olive oil for browning
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 3 tbsp. flour
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 14 oz. tomato puree
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 – 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 potatoes cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 4 carrots cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 cup frozen peas
Season the beef with salt and pepper. Dredge it in flour and shake off any excess. Let it come to room temperature and brown in olive oil. Do it in batches and don’t crowd the pot or it will stem instead of brown. Remove the beef and set aside.

Italian Beef Stew
Add more oil and cook the onions until soft. Return the beef and pour in the wine and allow to reduce, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, bay leaf, and enough broth to cover the meat and simmer covered for 30 minutes. Add the potatoes and carrots and cook for 30 – 40 minutes or until soft. Cover with more beef broth. Add the peas, simmer for 5 minutes. Add more liquid if too dry, taste for seasoning and serve. It may seem odd for beef stew, but you can serve this with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. If you don’t have beef broth you can use bouillon cubes.Italian Beef Stew

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Sweet and Sour Pork Chops

Sweet and Sour Pork Chops

This quick and easy recipe for sweet and sour pork chops is adapted from one I found in Bon Appetit. If you’d like it more ‘sour’ double the amount of vinegar.

 

Sweet and Sour PorkchopsIngredients:
  • 2 thick pork chops
  • Salt
  • 1 ½ sugar divided
  • 2 tbs. olive oil divided
  • 1 large, chopped shallot
  • 4 thinly sliced garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 tbs. capers
  • 2 tbs. butter
Season both sides of the chops with salt and sprinkle ¼ teaspoon of sugar on one side of each. Allow them to come to room temperature. Hold them with tongs and sear the fat cap in a dry, very hot frying pan until browned. Sweet and Sour Porkchops
Sweet and Sour Porkchops
Add one tablespoon of oil to the pan and cook one side for 3 – 4 minutes until browned. Turn and cook the 2nd, sugared side for 1 – 2 minutes on a lower heat so the sugar doesn’t burn. Remove the chops to a plate.

Sweet and Sour Porkchops
Put the remaining tablespoon of oil in the pan, add the shallots, and cook until they begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 3 minutes. Add the vinegar and remaining teaspoon of sugar to the pan and stir until some of the vinegar burns away.
Add the rosemary, capers, and one cup of water and bring to a simmer. Add the butter and whisk until the sauce is smooth. Sweet and Sour PorkchopsReturn the chops, spoon some sauce over them and simmer for 5 minutes, turning once, until done.
Transfer the chops to plates, pour the sauce over them, and serve.

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Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja translates to ‘old clothes’ in English. There’s probably a good story that goes along with that, but I don’t know it. I do know that ropa vieja is a hardy meat stew. The recipes for it vary a bit but basically, its shredded meat, peppers, tomatoes, and onions. It can be made with beef or pork.
Ropa Vieja
Ingredients:
  • 1 ½ – 2 lbs. flank steak cut along grain into 3-to-4-inch pieces
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil divided
  • 3 bell sliced peppers – vary colors
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 – 15 oz. can crushed tomatoes
  • ½ cup olives, cut in half
  • ½ cup raisins
  • ¼ cup drained capers
  • 2 cups chicken stock
Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper and let it come to room temperature. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a Dutch oven and brown the meat. Do it in batches and don’t crowd the pan.
Ropa Vieja
Remove the meat and add the remaining oil to the pot. Add the peppers, onion, garlic, cumin, and bay leaves. Cook for about 30 minutes until soft.
Ropa Vieja

 

Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja
Now add the olives, raisins, capers, tomatoes and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, mix, and deglaze the pot.
Lower heat and simmer for 2 ½ hours. Shred the meat with 2 forks, stir everything together and simmer for another 30 minutes and serve with rice.
Ropa Vieja

 

Ropa Vieja

Like most stewed meats, ropa vieja is better left over the next day.

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Reverse Seared Steak

Reverse Seared Steak

I’ve heard about this method of cooking a steak and decided to give it a try. The standard for a thick steak is, sear the steak and finish cooking it in the oven. As the name implies, this reverses that. Don’t try this unless you steak is at least 1 ½ inches thick. I’m using a 2-inch rib eye.
Reverse Seared Steak
Ingredients:
  • 1 steak (at least 1 ½ in. thick and your choice of cut)
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 1 crushed clove garlic – optional
  • 1 sprig of rosemary – optional
Season the steak with salt and pepper, the edges too. Place it on a wire rack set in a rimmed baking sheet. Place it uncovered in the refrigerator overnight to dry out. This step is optional but do it if you have time.
Preheat the oven to anywhere between 200 and 275°F (93 and 135°C). The lower you go, the more evenly the meat will cook.
Put the baking sheet, rack, and room temperature steak in the oven, and roast until it reaches an internal temperature about 10 to 15°F below the final temperature at which you’d like to serve the meat. Time in the oven is about 20 minutes for rare. 
Reverse Seared Steak
After 20 minutes in a 250 degree F. oven.


When you take the steak out of the oven, add a tablespoon of olive oil to a frying pan on a very high heat. When the pan is hot begin searing the steak. Holding it with tongs, start with the the edges. Lay the steak down and add the butter (and garlic/rosemary, if using). Tilt the pan and spoon the melted butter over the steak. Flip the steak and do the other side. This should take only about 35-40 seconds per side for a good sear.
Reverse Seared Steak
Reverse Seared Steak

Slice and serve the steak. It’s not necessary to rest the steak before cutting if you’re using the reverse sear method.Reverse Seared Steak

Steak Internal Cooking Temperatures
Reverse Seared Steak
Some other steak cooking methods here

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Mississippi Pot Roast

Mississippi Pot Roast

I saw this on a YouTube video  by Emmy Cho  and it looked interesting. It’s a different and maybe a little strange combination of ingredients but the result is great and it’s very easy easy to put together. 

Mississippi Pot Roast

Ingredients:
  • 1  2-3 lb. chuck roast
  • 1 pack au jus gravy mix
  • 1 pack ranch dressing
  • ½ 12 oz. jar of pepperoncini and brine
  • 1 stick of butter
  • Salt and black pepper

Place the chuck roast in the slow cooker. Sprinkle the packets of au jus and ranch on top of it. Pour half the brine and half the jar of peppers into the cooker. Season with salt and pepper. Put in a stick of butter and cook on low for 8 hours.Mississippi Pot Roast


Mississippi Pot Roast


Pull it apart with two forks and serve with potatoes, noodles or rice. Mississippi Pot Roast


Here’s the New York Times article on the  origin  of Mississippi Pot Roast. Mississippi Pot Roast


. . .  and here’s Emmy Cho’s video. Mississippi Pot Roast

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