Spatchcocked Bacon & Herb Butter Chicken

I came up with this recipe on the fly. We bought a whole chicken this weekend and wasn’t quite sure what to do with it mostly because a whole chicken is normally wasted on a family of 3. I decided to spatchcock it because I think it cooks more evenly this way and is easier to handle, besides I could use the back from the chicken to make stock in the future.

Please, enjoy this recipe as it really was on the fly and came out better then I could have expected.

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INGREDIENTS

1  chicken, 5lb, Spatchcocked

1/2 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

2 tablespoons rendered bacon fat

1 1/2 tablespoons cracked peppercorn

1 tablespoon finely ground sea salt

1 tablespoon dried thyme

1 tablespoon paprika

1 teaspoon ground sage

INSTRUCTIONS

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First, spatchcock the chicken. If you don’t know how there are a lot of videos out there telling you how. I put parchment paper down on a cookie sheet and put down a wire cooling rack on top. Lay out the spatchcocked chicken on the rack breast side up and put in the refrigerator to dry out for a few hours. I did this in the morning and then did the next step about 4 hours later, this gave the butter and bacon fat time to get to room temperature.

An hour before you are ready to cook, take the chicken out of the fridge and combine the salt, pepper, paprika, thyme, sage, butter and bacon fat into a paste. Slide your fingers between the breast meat and skin making pockets but be careful not to tear the skin. Rub the herb butter into the pockets between the meat and skin, along the skin and along the underside of the chicken.

Let the chicken get to room temperature and preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cook chicken for 45 minutes.

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Remove chicken from oven, turn on broiler and place chicken into broiler until the skin begins to get crispy, 5 to 8 minutes.

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Take the chicken out, tent with foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

Carve and enjoy.

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Biscuits & Sausage Gravy

Hi,

So I made this these items for Mother’s day Brunch. I just wanted to post the recipe here in case anyone wanted to know how I did them. I also wanted to say that these aren’t my recipes. The recipes below can be found on the nytimes website. All writings in RED are my own thoughts about the recipe.

Enjoy.

All Purpose Biscuits

INGREDIENTS

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

tablespoons baking powder

1 scant tablespoon sugar What in the world is a scant? It’s giving you a measurement so why add scant to it?

1 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, preferably European style Like ice-cold, just put it in the freezer until you are ready to use.

1 cup whole milk

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 425. Sift flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl. Transfer to a food processor. Cut butter into pats and add to flour, then pulse 5 or 6 times until the mixture resembles rough crumbs. (Alternatively, cut butter into flour in the mixing bowl using a fork or a pastry cutter.) I did this but I guess the butter wasn’t cold enough. Return dough to bowl, add milk and stir with a fork until it forms a rough ball. I had to brilliant idea to use a Kitchenaid mixer for this part, after 5 minutes of mixing on low-speed the dough was still very loose. I still proceeded to the next step as I was on a schedule.

Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and pat it down into a rough rectangle, about an inch thick. And here is where things got bad, the dough was still sticking to the table no matter the amount of flour. I ended up adding more flour to the dough until it just took the shape of a ball but at this point I think I had over kneaded it. Fold it over and gently pat it down again. Repeat. Cover the dough loosely with a kitchen towel and allow it to rest for 30 minutes.

Gently pat out the dough some more, so that the rectangle is roughly 10 inches by 6 inches. Cut dough into biscuits using a floured glass or biscuit cutter. Don’t have a biscuit cutter to it was old school glass cup for me. Do not twist cutter when cutting; this crimps the edges of the biscuit and impedes its rise. This might be true if you look at the results below. They didn’t rise like they did the last time I made them. They were still good but didn’t have the flakey layers I was looking for.

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Sausage & Gravy

INGREDIENTS

1 pound bulk pork breakfast sausage

¼ cup all-purpose flour, or instant flour like Wondra

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

2½ cups whole milk

Salt to taste

ground sage to taste Or just buy sausage that has these in them already.

ground fennel to taste Ditto

ground red pepper to taste Ditto

DIRECTIONS

Set a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat and cook the sausage, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until it is loose and no longer pink, approximately 10 minutes. Taste sausage and adjust seasonings — you may wish to add sage and fennel aggressively.

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Sprinkle the flour and pepper over the sausage and cook, stirring constantly, until the flour has been absorbed by the fat and has gathered its flavors close, approximately 5 to 7 minutes.

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Slowly stir in the milk and cook at a bare simmer until the gravy gets thick and the roux covers the back of a spoon. If it is too thick for your liking add more milk and stir Ended up adding a lot more milk and some water to thin it out some. Check seasonings and serve over split or roughly crumbled biscuits.

 

Tomorrow, I’m going to post a Bacon and Herb Butter Chicken recipe I came up with and on Saturday I’ll post up the recipe for the Mini Dutch Babies I also made for Mother’s Day. After that I’m going to take a break since I have to figure out dinner for next week and work on my part 4 of story about my other daughter Camryn.

Til then, enjoy.

Honey Soy Salmon

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There’s a fish truck that comes through our neighborhood every weekend that sells frozen fish from coolers. They purchase it from importers so they can sell it at wholesale prices. When I worked at a restaurant I’d heard a lot of businesses do this. It helps fishermen because sometimes they go out and fish but since everyone is doing not everyone gets their catches sold. So what they do is the freeze it, sell it to a company in the states and FedEx it overnight so it’s at its destination by the morning. It’s as close to Sea to Table as you can get.

We bought a bag of 5 salmon fillets and decided to cook them with the recipe below. I would have normally used a real lime but I had juice in the fridge and decided to go with this.

INGREDIENTS

4 Salmon Fillets (skin On Or Off)

Salt And Pepper

Olive Oil, For Cooking

2 Tablespoons Butter

3 Tablespoons Honey

3 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

2 whole Limes or lime juice

Cooked Rice, For Serving

INSTRUCTIONS

Season the salmon with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat and place the salmon, skin side down (if you have salmon with skin on it) in the pan. Cook for 5 minutes on the first side. Flip to the other side and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove the salmon and put it aside.

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In the same skillet, add the butter, honey, soy sauce, and juice from the 2 limes. Stir and cook over medium heat for a couple of minutes, until the glaze is thick. Taste and adjust the flavors, I like the lime taste so I gave it a little more drops of lime juice. Cook it until the glaze thickens, another minute or two.

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Place the salmon back into the skillet and spoon the sauce all over the top. Serve the salmon over the rice, spooning on extra sauce.

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Yeah I don’t have a picture of it back in the sauce or plated because everyone was hungry and sometimes you just can’t put off feeding the hungry masses.

Enjoy.

Deadpool has ARRIVED!!

Deadpool has come out on Blu-ray today and I’ve been very vocal about how much I enjoyed this movie. Hell, as soon as I finished watching it in the theater we preordered the movie upon leaving.

The other thing I’ve been vocal about is my much I hate the fact that I saw kids in the theater watching the movie. It’s rated R and it wasn’t a soft R either. I hated seeing 7-10 year olds waiting in line to see this movie (and I actually said it out loud while waiting for them to let us in).

So fast forward to today and I guess some kids in my daughters class said they saw Deadpool with their parents. Mind you the kids are in 2nd grade and are 7-8 years old. My daughter, being my child, went on to tell these kids that their parents shouldn’t have let them see the movie and they are doing a bad job.

I was about to say, Jolie you shouldn’t say they but I caught myself and just let her be her. She knows she shouldn’t see it and she thinks her classmates shouldn’t see it. Maybe that’s too opinionated and maybe some kids are “mature” enough to see it (they aren’t) I’m just impressed by her.

But who really cares, Deadpool is here and I’ll be watching it tonight. Cue up, DMX – X Gon’ Give It To Ya.20160510_154644

Mother’s Day Breakfast, Dinner & Dessert

Being out of works sucks. Whenever you want to do something special you have to weigh the cost of what you want to do to how much disposable cash is on had. I hope to be back to work someday soon but right now, this is my and our reality.

Which makes why I’m more than willing to cook for my wife whenever she makes a special request. Besides taking care of our daughter its one of the few things I can really do for her. So her request was to for me to make biscuits from scratch and sausage gravy, I did this for her last Mother’s Day and I guess she wanted an encore. My sister always asked me to make Mini Dutch Babies w/ preserved berries so I told them I’d handle all the breakfast as long as someone else handled dinner (Chicken & Waffles w/honey syrup).

I’ll post the recipes I used for the biscuits, sausage gravy and mini dutch babies tomorrow. I just wanted to post some pictures of the food we ate for now. Also, my sister brined and cooked the chicken and made up the batter for the waffles. I’ll try to get the recipe for that as well later during the week. I just know for now that she brined the chicken for 2 days in water, sugar, salt and onion powder and as for the waffle batter she whipped the egg whites until they were foamy and then added them to the batter. She said this makes the waffle crisper.

As for dessert, my daughter and I had to make something to bring to school for heritage week. We decided on Sweet Potato Pie because half of our family is from the south and who doesn’t love a good sweet potato pie. We ended up making two, one we sent to school the other went into the freezer for future use. I tried to spell out mom in mini marshmallows but due to poor planning I ran out of space and said, “good enough”. After being on my feet most of the day cooking while still tending to a recently spayed dog I was a little tired.

But in the end, it was worth it.

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McDonalds=Wedding Dinner?

McDonald’s put back into circulating the ad where the copy getting married don’t get a chance to eat and the brides dad leaves them a not with 2 cheese burgers in the limo saying “you never get to eat at your own wedding”. The couple roll down the window, smile and eat.

First, if I spend $5000 on a wedding and your gift is 2 McDonald’s cheese burgers then I’m hopping out the car and we fighting.

Don’t leave me burgers, get me a plate of food that we paid for. Man I hate that ad mainly because it’s true. My wife and I didn’t eat at our wedding so we ate Chinese food in the hotel room that night. You NEVER get to eat at your wedding, you are taking pictures, meeting people and while all that happens people are taking the plates away and moving to the next course.

One thing I will say is this, if people don’t show up for the wedding but say they are coming the food that was prepared for them is yours to take home. We had a few no shows at our wedding and we took their plates home with us, gave them to our families and ate some ourselves the next day. You might not think to do this so have your best man or bridesmaid do it for you. Trust me on this.

So that’s my advice, oh and screw you if you think a cheeseburger is as good as a 3 course meal.

Sandy’s first haircut

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First of all Sandy is a Shih-Poo, a mix of a Shih Tzu and a Poodle. We bought her off of my Aunts neighbor who just had a litter. I’ll get into the reason we got Sandy in the future. We got her in either late October or early November and she was around 6-7 weeks old.

Needless to say that we didn’t have a reason to get her a haircut until recently. On the right is what she looked like and the left is after he first haircut. I made a joke to my wife that Sandy must have run away during the haircut and they gave us a new dog. I knew she would look different but I wasn’t expecting such a difference.

She definitely looks like her father, he was a pure Poodle.

Mother’s Day Meal

Mother’s day is around the corner and I’ve been asked by my sister and my wife to make something special for breakfast.

For Christmas I made Baby Dutch Babies with preserved berries. My sister enjoye them so much I’ve been asked to do an encore.

Last Mother’s Day I made Sausage Gravy and Biscuits from scratch. My wife loved them so much she made a special request for those as well. So this Sunday while they are in church I’m going to make these so they will be nice an ready when they get home for brunch.

Dinner will be Chicken and Waffles but Dad is handling that. If I get a chance maybe I’ll take pictures and post the recipe.

Korean BBQ Spare Ribs

INGREDIENTS

5 pounds beef short ribs

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup mirin

1 small onion finely grated

1 small Asian pear, peeled and finely grated

4 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons dark sesame oil

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions

Lay out your beef and sprinkle with brown sugar. Spread it over evenly and pat it into the meat. Let the ribs sit out at room temperature while you prepare the marinade. In a bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients.

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***BTW, if you don’t have mirin or don’t want to buy it you can sub it by taking a ¼ cup of white wine or cooking wine and a ½ a tablespoon of sugar.***

Transfer ribs into a sealable freezer bag, I say freezer bag because you’ll probably only cook half the ribs and put the rest in the freezer for a quickie future meal. Add marinade, press out excess air from bags, and seal. I left the ribs marinating for 24 hours in the fridge and turned them every 12 hours. You don’t have to go this route, marinating for 4 hours and turning every 2 should do fine if in a hurry.

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The recipe I was using called for grilling the ribs outside on a gas or charcoal grill. Well the weather hasn’t been great up here so I cooked them on the stove on a cast iron grill pan. I’ll cook the next batch outside. Heat the grill pan on medium high. Drain off excess marinade from the ribs. Grill short ribs, turning once, to desired doneness, about 10 minutes per side. If this were an outdoor grill it would probably be about 4 minutes each side. I had followed this time frame when I was grilling them inside and they were damn near rare so adjust accordingly.

Serve with whatever sides you like or cut them into pieces and serve as appetizers.

BTW, the marinade reminded me or the sauce on Bourbon Chicken so if you want, you can sub the beef for chicken and not miss a beat.

Enjoy.

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Back from a brief break…

Hi…..

So a few things happened since I last updated the site. My mother in law came into town an stayed with us for a few weeks. It was nice but it meant that the dog had to sleep with my wife and I while she was in town. We then sent our daughter so visit her cousins and uncle in Ohio for a week. During that time my wife and I went to Delware for a friends wedding. All in all it was a nice last few weeks which kept me from being able to sit down and come up with new material.

I’ve also been looking for a job which hasn’t gone so well either. I hope to have a few updates up this week. Gonna post a few recipes that I cooked over the past week fews along with one I’m planning on cooking tomorrow:

Meatloaf

Korean BBQ Short Ribs

Sweet Potato Pie

&

Honey Soy Salmon