Ribeye is the canonical cheesesteak meat but I nearly always use flat iron steaks. This one was cut thin while semi-frozen and tossed in a bowl with onions, green peppers, and salt and pepper. It marinated for an hour or so – the onions started to wilt a little.That’s provolone starting to melt into the steak and veggies. I turned small stainless bowls upside down over the two piles to help it along.It worked pretty well. This is the closest I’ve come to this particular style of cheesesteak, I usually go with a cheese sauce poured over the meat in the bun, and I think I prefer that method although it is just a touch more trouble.
I’ve been cooking up some great recipes almost daily, but finding the time to put together recipe posts has been difficult. And forget remembering to take photos. Pictured above is Easter dinner, which I did remember to snap. Mostly because as I went to cook the rib roast, I realized I have never transcribed my go-to recipe for this perfect rib roast. I will remedy that in the coming week.
We had snow today, so yesterday before I even sat down to work, I spent time cutting flowers for vases and covering up plants I didn’t want to lose. So there wasn’t a lot of time to think about dinner. Luckily, I had a few items in the frig that needed to be used, so first up for dinner:
Sautéed Sausages and Pasta
- 1 lb sausage links – I used bratwurst this time, Italian sausages work great, too
- 3 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 1 yellow pepper, sliced
- 1 green pepper, sliced
- 1/2 onion, sliced
- 1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp dried basil, crushed
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano, crushed
- salt and pepper to taste
- 10 oz dried spaghetti (works best with that, but if you have another style on hand, go for it)
skillet and saucepan
Slice sausages into 2 inch pieces.
Prepare pasta according to package directions, but drain when just Al Dente, you want it a bit under cooked, because it will continue to cook and soak up the sauce in the next step. Reserve the pasta water.
While pasta is cooking, heat oil in skillet, reduce to medium-hi heat, add vegetables and saute until softened. Then add sausage pieces and brown. Reduce heat to medium and cover until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Once sausage is cooked through, add a ladle of pasta water to the pan to deglaze and create a sauce – add more as needed – and stir until well mixed and cook on medium high for a minute or two, reduce heat. Add drained pasta. Toss and let it all cook together on low for about 3-5 minutes to let the pasta soak up the sauce. Add a bit more pasta water if needed.
Serve with Parmesan cheese and salad.
Since it was going to be cold today, I decided soup would be a great idea. I made a traditional Potato Soup (recipe here) but since I had leftover carrots and potatoes from a pot roast earlier in the week, I blended those together with the milk, omitted the flour, and made the tastiest creamy soup base. The flavors were amazing and it was perfect for a cold snowy spring day.
- 4 oz can sliced black olives
- 2 oz jar sliced green olives
- 4 fresh mushrooms, washed & sliced
- 4 Roma tomatoes, sliced
- 8 oz green beans, cooked & cooled
- 1 green pepper, seeded & sliced
- 1 banana pepper, seeded & sliced
- 4 green onions, sliced
- ½ cup white wine vinegar
- ½ cup olive oil
- 1 tsp basil, crushed
- 1 tsp crushed garlic
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 oz grated parmesan or Asiago cheese
Mix vegetables together in serving bowl. Blend vinegar, oil, basil & garlic then pour over vegetables and toss. Salt & pepper to taste. Garnish with cheese.
We made a run up to a local meat processing place a while back. It’s just a tad too far away to make spur of the moment purchases or to include in weekly grocery runs. We take coolers up there when we go and plan on filling them up with various items. One thing they offer that just puts Kroger’s meat section to shame are their smoked ham hocks.This is half of one. They brought out two whole hocks and asked if we wanted them cut down. Yes, please! They are cured and just lightly smoked. I boiled this one for almost three hours so I could break it apart with a pair of forks. I cut the rind into lardons and crisped them as bacon and used those crumbled crisps and the rendered fat in the cornbread.This is the standard back of the box cornbread recipe, with chopped peppers and a handful of shredded cheddar to go with those bacon-y crisps.Recipe for the beans? This one is pretty good! The minced veggies add a bit of color and the seasoning suggestions are on point.
The in-laws gifted us these two fig tree cuttings and sent over a small bowl of figs from the tree they were cut from. Tasty! I hadn’t ever eaten a fresh fig before, my only exposure to figs of any sort was by way of those Newton cookies and the occasional holiday candied treat. They didn’t provide too much info on them except to say they were Italian fig trees. They say they will grow to six feet and bear fruit in the second year. Any luck and we won’t kill them before that. This is my second try at baking slider buns and I think I’m on the right path. Those black specks are bits of garlic that I flavored the melted butter with for the pre-bake brushing. I didn’t worry about them when it went on but I should have known they were going to char in the oven. It looks like one KA recipe will make 20 appropriately sized buns – 2-1/2 to 3 inches each.Bea was in the pot with the jalapenos when I looked out the window but by the time I had my camera in hand she was out of it and back into her usual spot.We had chicken enchiladas for dinner today, nothing special – tomatillo sauce, roasted poblanos, and Monterey jack. I made the corn/black bean salad I’ve done before but new to the table is the hominy/sweet corn/red bean salad. Both salads have onions and green peppers in a rice vinegar dressing.Bitsy is taking her turn in the catnip pot. They are all just crazy for that stuff.
That beef roast we used to make the veggie beef soup yesterday was plenty big to allow for leftovers. Chili sounded good, what with the nighttime temps dipping into the 40s. I almost brought out the meat grinder for the beef but decided against it in favor of a knife. I left it in the freezer for a tad too long so it was more frozen than firm but my knife is sharp and I am able to bring a lot of weight to bear. It ended up in a 1/4 inch dice – almost a mince. I added the same amount of pork sausage, ending with 2 pounds or so in total. I wanted to try a marinade so I put the meat into a stainless bowl and drizzled in rice vinegar and soy sauce, sprinkled on garlic powder, onion powder, and various chili powders, grated in half a big onion, diced and added the remainder, several minced garlic cloves, a couple cups of chopped peppers (green bell, poblano, jalapeno), salt, pepper, dry mustard, brown sugar, and maybe a few things more, I’m sure I’m forgetting something but this is most of it and should suffice. I sealed that all into a plastic container and left it in the fridge overnight.
Cooking it down today was by far the easiest part. Cook the meat and marinade in small batches and dump those into a bigger pot. I like my Dutch oven for that. Once you have the big pot going add your favorite beans and canned tomatoes – I like the tomato bits with green chilies. I also stir in tomato paste or sauce, depending on how liquid it is, and bring out my secret weapon – anchovy paste. A tablespoon will do and it adds a nice “something” I’d have trouble describing. We’ve borrowed a word from the Japanese that covers it: umami. Let it simmer for a couple of hours on the stove top, or in a 325 oven. Add water as needed.