Posts tagged ‘Grilling’

April 10, 2016

Maple-Fennel Pork Chop

Maple-Fennel Pork Chop

A quick editorial note first. I know it’s been quite some time since I posted a new recipe here. I’ve written before about the challenges of keeping up regular posts between work and school, so I won’t get into it again. Since my last post, however, I’ve also gotten engaged (!!!) and adopted a cute but mischievous little pup (!). Needless to say, finding time to write – and even cook – has been difficult.

In the past I’ve always said that I would get back to posting on a more regular schedule. I honestly don’t know if that will ever be the case. Cooking is a hobby and a passion for me, and sharing it with others – whether in person or on this blog – brings me a lot of joy. But when it feels like a chore or I feel guilty for not posting, the magic fades pretty quickly.

So I hope you’ll check back now and again for new recipes – or better yet sign up for updates! – but no promises about getting back to new recipes every week.

Now enough talk – to the recipe!

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July 18, 2014

Chipotle Grilled Corn

 

Chipotle Grilled Corn

What’s the best way to beat the heat? Sometimes you just have to fight fire with fire. And by “fire,” I mean this Chipotle Grilled Corn.

This corn the cob is the first in what’s sure to be a long string of grilling-related recipes, as I finally purchased my very own grill a few weeks ago. Although you can emulate some of the mechanics of a grill by using the broil function of your oven, I don’t believe there is a real substitute for freshly grilled meats and vegetables. Grabbing a small grill off craigslist or making friends with your neighbors who have one is highly recommended.

As for this recipe, it really couldn’t be simpler once you have the right equipment. At just four ingredients, it definitely qualifies as a cheat dish. I promise that you won’t feel cheated at all by the wonderful union of sweet and heat that you bite into though.

This recipe is a perfect example. A proper searing on the grill brings caramelizes the outer layer of the corn, bringing out it’s natural sweetness. It’s paired with out the smokey and devilishly spicy flavor of the chipotle pepper and tamed just so by creaminess of the butter to make for an easy, delicious side.

Serve these bad boys up with some carne asada or barbecued chicken and enjoy with some sangria. You could even invite over some friends – assuming you’re willing to share.

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December 26, 2011

Culinary Challenge: Christmas Edition

Question: What do you do when the power goes out just as your stepmom is about to put her Christmas pie into the oven?

BBQ

You bust out the gas grill.

Anyone who has talked to me about Top Chef knows that I think many of the challenges they make the contestants perform are completely  ridiculous, not to mention a poor means of judging whether or not they are actually talented chefs. However, when the power went out on Christmas and I came up with the idea of using the gas grill to cook the pie, I felt like I had just landed in a surprise twist elimination challenge.

To achieve an oven-like cooking environment, I lit only the burners on one side and used a roasting rack and a baking tray to raise the pie away from the direct heat. After getting the temperature to about 475 degrees, I quickly popped the pie and closed it up. The cold air dropped the temperature just below 425 (proper pie-cooking temperature, or so I was told) but it came back up in short time.

The end result was almost identical to a proper, oven-cooked pie. The only difference was a hint of smokiness in edges of the crust – honestly not a bad flavor pairing with the sharp, tart cherry filling.

There’s nothing remarkable about barbacueing a pie per say, it just isn’t an option most people think of when their oven goes AWOL. That’s the beauty of cooking though: the principles are universal, and once you know that it’s easy to alter the ingredients, the structure, or even the environment that you cook in, to get the results you want.

I’ll be returning to regular posting soon now that the holiday season is beginning to settle down. Until then, remember to cook adventurously and think outside the box when you’re in the kitchen. Happy Holidays!

July 22, 2011

Steak with Spicy Gorgonzola

Summer, even in notoriously grey Seattle, is a time to grill.

Whether it’s fruit or chicken, grilling is an easy, no-hassle ways to cook. No pans or pots to clean, and the rich flavors that develop from roasting and searing bring out some of the best that food has to offer.

I’m a year-round griller, if you couldn’t guess, but summer always gets me particularly fired up. Now that the weather has decided to string a couple nice days together in a row, I decided to trot out one of my favorite summer dishes: Steak with Spicy Gorgonzola.

This dish starts with an American classic, steak. Everyone has their own budget and their own favorite cut of meat, so the choice is up to you (I’m partial to flank or t-bone, however). A simple salt and pepper seasoning helps accentuate the flavor of the beef and brings out the moisture to allow for a more robust crust to develop while cooking.

Gorgonzola, jalapeño and cilantro form a perfect trio in the sauce.  The tangy Gorgonzola base forms the perfect combination to the hearty, ruddy steak. The spiciness of the jalapeño offers a definite kick – this dish isn’t for the faint of heart – finished with cool notes of cilantro to cap the heat.  This fiery meal is perfect for a late summer dinner in the shade.

Steak with Spicy Gorgonzola

  • 1 steak of choice
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1/4 cup onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely diced
  • 1 jalapeño, finely diced
  • 1/3 cup half and half
  • 1/3 cup Gorgonzola cheese
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  • 2 springs of cilantro, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper

 

  1. Salt and pepper each side of the steak and allow to sit for fifteen minutes to draw the moisture out. Start the grill and set to medium high (or wait until temperature is approximately 400°).  While waiting, start on the sauce.
  2. Heat butter in a medium saucepan on medium heat.  Saute the onion, garlic and jalapeño until translucent, approximately seven to eight minutes.
  3. Reduce heat to medium low and add the half and half and Gorgonzola cheese.  Let simmer until the cheese has melted into the sauce.  Add the flour and continue to simmer until the sauce has thickened to a viscous consistency.  Add the cilantro and sit into the sauce.  Leave on low heat until serving.
  4. Grill the steak to desired state (I recommend medium-rare, approximately 6 minutes on one side and 4 minutes on the other).  Remove the steak from heat and let sit for five minutes.  Top with the Gorgonzola sauce and serve immediately.
July 11, 2011

Grilled Buffalo Chicken Burger

Foodie intelligentsia leader Michael Pollan, in his book Food Rules, argues that if you really want to eat food that isn’t particularly good for you, you should make it yourself.  It’ll taste better and, chances are, unless you regularly cook in an industrial kitchen fully stocked with chemical ingredients, it’ll be healthier for you too.  This dish is one of my interpretations of this rule.

Blue cheese bacon burgers and buffalo wings are two iconic greasy foods; something you would enjoy during the Superbowl or after a long day of physical work fully expecting to spend the rest of the day in a lethargic food coma.  I love both of these dishes, but I wanted to combine them in a way that wouldn’t leave me waking up in the night in a cold sweat of partially hydrogenated oil.  I got all the ingredients together in the kitchen to see how I might be able to dream up something that captured all the succulent flavors in a health(ier) fashion.

The result was this grilled buffalo chicken burger.  It does have a light breading, but by grilling it instead of using the tradition frying method it avoids a substantial portion of the fat content.  Fresh blue cheese instead of a dressing blended with large dollops of mayonnaise avoids another pitfall.  The final product is a burger that has all the spiciness of the buffalo sauce, crispy-saltiness of the bacon and sharpness of the blue cheese without nearly as much grease.  Definitely a dish worth making yourself!

Grilled Buffalo Chicken Burger

  • 1 medium chicken breast
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  • Buffalo sauce, to coat
  • 2 slices of thick cut bacon
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese, crumbled
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 2 strips of iceberg lettuce
  • 1 hamburger bun
  1. Heat the grill to ~375 degrees.  Coat the chicken breast in the beaten egg, then dredge it in the panko bread crumbs until covered.  Place the chicken on the grill.  After the panko coating has sealed, approximately 5 minutes, take the chicken off the grilled and coat with buffalo sauce.  Return to the grill and continue to cook until completed (time will vary by grill, cut into the thickest section of the chicken to check if you’re unsure if it’s done)
  2. While the chicken is cooking, place the strips of bacon in a skillet on medium heat.  To achieve the desired crispiness, turn the bacon frequently and drain off the excess fat if too much accumulates.
  3. Toast the hamburger bun on the grill until a light golden color develops around the sides.  Arrange the lettuce, a few tomato slices, chicken and bacon on the bun.  Sprinkle the blue cheese on top and place the other half of the bun on top. Wait a few minutes for the cheese to melt and then enjoy!
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