Monday, September 30, 2013

Slow Cooked Brisket

My dad smoking bbq for Theron's first visit to Texas

Even typing the title, I feel like I have made an affront to my father.  The man makes his own bbq pits and smokers as a hobby, for love of God!

I don't know that my parents have ever slow-cooked brisket... Well, Ok, to be fair, smoking is slow-cooking... but you know what I mean... the electronic, plug it in, choose a setting, and leave variety.
One of my dad's home-made smokers:) I'm so proud!
But back to our blasphemy:

Theron has been wanting a slow cooker for a little while now (like every other kitchen gadget known to man) and what did he want for the inaugural test run of this slow cooker to be?  Pork roast, right?  Ham?  No!  He was emphatic that it be the much belov-ed Brisket!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Theron's Birthday Breakfast Burger

No, this is not a burger.
Hi folks!

Around here (here being wherever my hubby and I happen to be) we don't just celebrate a birthday, we usually celebrate a birthday 'week' - or at the very least - weekend, so that's a lot of what's been going on lately. (IE also part of the reason I was absent last week - sorry!)

I was super inspired by a pin I found on pinterest and decided I would make Theron a pretty intense 'breakfast burger' for him the day after his birthday, as his bday was on a Thursday, and he took the following Friday off from work.

This is the burger!
On his birthday we made chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter frosting (pictured above). Yes I said 'we', as he insisted I wait for him to get home from work so he could help make them!

He's kind of crazy, but always in a cute way.

But back to the (belated) birthday breakfast burger... (phew!)
Well, it wound up being more like a 'brunch' burger because it took awhile to make!  In fact, I ended up having to drag him out of bed to assist me, so be warned :)

Did I mention that the Friday we made this was Friday the 13th?
Oooh, Creepy!

I'm a regular Martha Stewart!  Or just... also crazy.
Anyway, on to the burger! And my mom asks that I forewarn you: This is not a health recipe!
For special occasions only :D

Friday, September 6, 2013

Olive Tapenade Recipe

Yesterday I made one of the easiest hors d'oeuvres I've ever attempted, and was super pumped it turned out so good and so quickly!

 Ever since I was 22 (as I stated in my History of Caviar post) and my sis and I hosted a
gothic beauty pageant / art show that was catered by her friend, I realized I actually liked olives.  Olives, you see, were on the catered food platter and, after a glass of wine, tasted less pungent to me than they did on a raw, non-numbed palate.  As with many things, the more you try something in all it's forms, the more apt you are to enjoy it. Thus, by the time I moved to NYC, I realized I outright lurved olive tapenade.

Two things about this dish: If you're pronouncing it tapanaid you're saying it wrong; it's actually pronounce tapanahd / tapan-odd as it hails from the south of France.  Also, tapenade is sort of a translation for the dish which, rudimentarily, contains olives (duh), capers, olive oil, and anchovies... so when you're saying olive tapenade, you're sort of saying "olive olive mixture."

But who cares, really?  When it is super simple to make and turns out so wonderfully, it doesn't matter what you're saying!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Cooking with Us: E2: Peter's Famous Salsa

Production still as taken by Theron ;)

Hi Gang!

Welcome to our second installation of 'Cooking With Us' where we feature my best friend, Peter, and his delicioso salsa!

He actually flew down from NYC to surprise me, and decided he'd teach me to make his amazing salsa whilst visiting.  Are you rubbing your eyes?  Yes, he is a native New Yorker, and yes, he makes tremendously amazing salsa!

And yes, I admit our video does sort of sound like an infomercial for the Ninja blender... but, well, the Ninja is awesome!!  We also (shocker alert) made this salsa super spicy - but you can easily adjust it to your own taste.

The video has closed captions and the transcript and recipe will be provided after the jump!!

As with the last video, I highly recommend you set your playback to at least 720 if not 1080.  This time I added music and more transitions, hopefully making it more fun.  I think it's pretty obvious we were having fun!


Up the resolution :)          ^
Or go watch it in high-res on youtube :D

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Val!'s Guacamole & Pico de Gallo

Guacamole, there are so many ways to make it!  And it is possible there is no one right way to make it - despite my probably having said the exact opposite in the past.  Maybe something along the lines of, "I make the best guacamole anyone has ever made ever!!"  

I grew up with guacamole that looked a lot like the one pictured below, except without the tomatoes.

My mom's a guacamole purist, you see, which means it'll be avocado (of course), with some garlic powder, lemon juice, and maybe a little salt for taste. 

She shakes her head ruefully when she is in the same room as me making guacamole concurrently.  
(Did you catch all that rhyming? Wow!) 
That is how dichotomous our guacamoles are.