DSC_8819 (1600x1060)I bought a jar of pickled garlic to round out an online order a while back and liked it well enough to try to duplicate it.  I found a recipe for French pickled garlic that was reiterated over scores of web sites so I just picked this one at random to link to here.  The jar I bought had a definite yellow tinge to it so I added turmeric to my version.  It worked just fine.  I have some of mine here with a Cubano sammich prepared in my grill press/panini maker.DSC_4785 (1600x1060)Mrs J made a little cat toy filled with catnip and polyfill.  Ginger was playing with it until I decided to try for an action photo whereupon he ran off and hid under the couch.DSC_4782 (1600x1060)I found this young hummer going for the red honeysuckle this morning.  Most of his pals are hanging out on feeder row:DSC_4783 (1600x1060)Made a meatloaf yesterday with ground beef and chorizo plus some chopped peppers, onions, eggs and bread crumbs, etc.  I was thinking meatloaf sammiches from the get-go.DSC_8814 (1600x1060)The gravy is from the drippings with Worcestershire, dark soy sauce, and catsup added.  I liked the Kaiser rolls well enough to use them with a basic cheeseburger.DSC_8799 (1600x1060)I made a sauce for it with sauteed mushrooms and garlic in butter and oil.  Swiss cheese rounds it out.  Grilled sweet corn has become a favorite this summer.  Butter and salt and pepper work just fine, sometimes I use Old Bay seasoning instead of the salt and pepper.DSC_8810 (1600x1060)This one is a simple cold cut sub with ham and cheese and plenty of veggies with a vinaigrette dressing.

One of these days I’ll cook a real deal meal and surprise everyone!

Pasta Salad

DSC_8366 (1600x1060)I had a block of feta I bought a while back with no clear idea of what to do with it.  I was afraid it would go bad so we used it up in a pasta salad.  This one has kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes, prosciutto, the feta, and fresh basil in a store bought roasted pepper vinaigrette.  The local market has been stocking various pasta shapes lately and we grabbed these in a bag that was labeled “gigli Italian pasta” – something I hadn’t seen before.  Turns out it’s another name for campanelle “little bells”.

Also on the plate is a sandwich done in the style of a Cubano out of my new panini press.  I guess I’ll eventually get around to doing a gadget post on that.

Sammich Pr0n – Cubano

DSC_8288 (1600x1060)I sliced a roast pork shoulder the other day with my new machine and it had me hankering for a Cubano sandwich.  Spread yellow mustard on both halves of a suitable roll, add a layer of pork, another of ham, cheese is next, then sliced pickles.  Use a panini press or something similar to finish it off.  I used Swiss cheese on this one, provolone will work, too.


These are yummy.  I dragged my George Foreman grill out of storage for this one.  Stopped by the store on the way home from a trip to the FedEx drop off place and saw they had a sale on roast pork, already sliced.  I had this made in my mind before the deli had it bagged for me.

Smear mustard on both sides of a largish sub loaf, layer on ham and pork, some cheese, and sliced dill pickles.  This one has provolone.  Butter the top and bottom of the buns and have at it.  Panini press is perfect, a G. Foreman grill is great.  You can also do some “field expedient” improv.

Pressed and Grilled Sammiches

Had a lot of fun with the paninis yesterday.  While cruising the Google I noticed several sandwiches that are pressed as part of the definition of what they are.  An example would be “The Cubano”, a favorite sammich from down Florida way. It it a ham/roast pork/swiss cheese/sliced pickle/mustard sammich built on a Cuban bread roll and pressed while grilling.  Looking at the various recipes for it yesterday made me want one.  The leftovers in the fridge led me to make something similar out of what we had.  The jerked chicken leftovers were perfect.  I dug out some hoagie rolls and layered the chicken with cheese and pickles.  Mrs J got the white American cheese and the bread and butter pickles, I made mine with pepper jack and dill slices.

To fend off complaints from the Alton Brown crowd *coughkirkcough* I used a different set up than the Foreman grill that worked fine on the paninis yesterday:

The pan directly atop the foil came straight from a 500 oven.  The cast iron wok is just there for the extra weight.  The stove is medium low under the bottom pan.  Brushed some butter on the sammich side of the foil and on the bottom pan.

This worked pretty well, though it looks like the flame from the burner might have to be lowered a tad next time around.

Much experimentation with materials and methods will ensue…Mrs J declared this the preferred sammich method, and who am I to dispute?  These were yummy!