Archive for ‘Beer’

March 17, 2012

It’s Not Just for St. Patrick’s | Scratch Corned Beef

When we visited our farmer friend Dick Jensen a few weeks ago for maple tapping, we picked up some of his lovingly raised and delicious grass-fed beef.  We blew through the short ribs (I still owe you some posts on those, two ways) but we also bought a brisket with the full intention of having it as corned beef.

And everyone loves it for St. Patrick’s Day.  But consider it as something you could make anytime.  It makes enough for leftovers for a couple of days.  Turn it into amazing sandwiches with a little Russian dressing and coleslaw.  Add some leftover potatoes that you par boiled and then roasted in fat and turn it into hash.  This is not your out of the can variety.

It’s worth the effort.

There is a bit of wiggle room just how long you choose to brine your brisket. 

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December 9, 2010

South-Texas Locavore / Shiner-Steamed Shrimp with Ruby Red Grapefruit Salsa

Tonight’s dish highlights the soul of local food.  It’s perfect for late fall in South Texas.  The grapefruit are sweet, but also a little savory.  They’re a beautiful color, and plentiful.  And because it’s coming on grapefruit season in the Rio Grande Valley, they’re awfully cheap.  Meanwhile, the local Meyer lemons are juicy and fragrant.  So when I saw the shrimp from Harlingen Farm, this idea started to take shape.  I’m honoring what’s local, now, while giving a little wink to everyone who has fond memories from this corner of the world.  Oh, and there’s Shiner.  It’s nice to be back.

Shiner-Steamed Shrimp with Ruby Red Grapefruit Salsa

For the Salsa:

2 ruby red grapefruit, supremed and diced

Juice from 1/2 Meyer lemon

1 jalapeño, diced

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October 21, 2010

Pub Night: Steak Pie with Mushy Peas

We have a love for just about all things English in this house: Shaun and Ed, Brit rock, Liberty fabrics, English comedy (the original Office, please), Chelsea football, Stilton, the Queen, English gardens, and the concept of a “local.”  Give me some grass-fed beef and I’ll give you a pie.  I could have used some kidneys to throw in there, too.  Next time.  I like to serve that lovely pie with some mushy peas.  These peas are the easiest side dish of all time: two ingredients, one of which is frozen peas.  While I didn’t use marrowfat peas as a traditional recipe calls, a good organic frozen variety pinch hits nicely.  Add in a bit of English cheddar to the peas and you’re laughing. 

A PK tip: this is a great meal for a Saturday afternoon; you need time, but not much of it is hands on time.  Plus it goes very well with beer.

Who Ate All The (Meat) Pie?

For the Pie

2 pounds (grass-fed, organic) chuck roast, cut in large cubed, bones reserved

small handful baby leeks, chopped (or 1 small onion, or 1 large leek)

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October 4, 2010

Dinner, Day Three: Braised Short Ribs from Flying J Farm

I can’t tell you how much I love short ribs.  They’re cheap, they’re easy to prepare, and with a little forward planning, they’ll give you more flavor than cuts that are five times the price.  Unfortunately, they’re also terribly underutilized in the home kitchen.  Even if you aren’t that comfy in the kitchen, they are very forgiving.  So go ahead and keep your filets – this unsung cut is the one for me.

For this dish I used grass-fed short ribs from Flying J Farm, which were second to none.  They were dense and meaty, with just the right amount of fat for succulence.  And marvelously bordering on just a bit wild tasting because of the grass diet.  Just remember: low heat, long time, and you’ll have a smile on your face at the dinner table.

Braised Short Ribs with Red Pepper Gravy and Sweet Potato Mash

3 pounds of grass-fed, Flying J short ribs, or grass-fed if you’re not from Ohio

1 T of bacon fat (Curly Tail Farm)

2 green onions, roughly chopped

3 garlic cloves, diced

2 medium tomatoes, roughly chopped

2 medium red bell peppers

1 small, red, spicy chili

2 T of flour

3 cups of stock, 3 cups of water


To get started add a thwack (that would be a heaping tablespoon, more or less) of bacon fat to a large, heavy-lidded roasting pan.  Turn up the heat pretty high.  Generously salt and pepper the ribs, then add them to the pan, searing on both sides.  I must emphasize two points here: 1.  Sear them until they begin to brown, and 2.  Do this in batches so as not to crowd the pan.  I will repeat:  do not crowd the pan.  Stack your ribs on a plate and set them aside.

Turn the heat way down, and add the onion, the chili, and the garlic.  Scrape the bottom of the pan somewhat obsessively to release all that goodness.  When soft, then add the peppers and tomatoes, and soften them somewhat.  Then put the ribs back in, along with any juices on the plate.  With flair, sprinkle everything with the flour, then add the liquid.

PK Tip:  After last night’s Chicken dish, we had leftover bones.  While cleaning up, I put them in a pasta pot, filled it with water along with some vegetable trimmings (like leek tops, carrot tops, radish tops, the odd tomato), bay, thyme and peppercorns, brought it to a boil, and simmered over low heat for 45 minutes.  Voila…stock.  In all honesty, if at this stage you don’t have stock made this way (or something similar), I would say just use all water and not a boxed stock.

Back to the show:  Place the lid on the pot and place in the oven at 300˚.  Two and a half hours is an absolute minimum.  Three is better, Four better still.  When it’s done, pull out the bones (won’t be hard – and save them!  That’s beef stock!), skim/remove any fat, and pull the meat apart with two forks.  Lovely.

Meanwhile, you’ll have plenty of time to make the sweet potato mash.  That’s one mammoth Beauregard sweet potato (thank you Northridge Organics), cubed, boiled, drained and mashed.  Add heavy cream, milk, salt and pepper to taste.  At the risk of repeating myself, lovely.  If you’ve got some fresh corriander (that’s cilantro), chop it and sprinkle it over the top, it’s fantastic.

According to James Beard, short ribs are best served with beer.  As a rule, you should never, ever disagree with James Beard.  So Columbus Brewing Company’s Scottish Ale it was.

Playlist included Bloodbuzz Ohio, by The National.  God, I love his voice.

Complete sourcing for local produce used in this meal can be found on the Farms and Producers page.

September 22, 2010

At the Noodle Bar with Mr. Bob Harris

When I first saw Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation, it took me somewhere I’d never been.  Those beautiful shots, that dreamy music, the insomnia, discovery and wistful alienation not only transported me to Tokyo, but somehow soothed me as well.

I think Bob and Charlotte might’ve shared a dish like this one night between pachinko and karaoke.  It’s simple, but the Japanese flavors, as always, are sneaky in their complexity.  Take your time making it, and take your time eating it.

Sofia’s masterpiece shows us that the unfamiliar can be scary, but that’s always outweighed by new experiences, new acquaintances, and maybe some lessons learned.  Best of all, it gives us some time to think, daydream, or escape.  Again, this may seem complicated, but it’s really only 4 relatively easy steps.  So just organize your mise en place and relax.  These are calming flavors.  You’ll make a beautiful dish.  Most importantly, if only in your mind, you’ll take a wonderful trip.

Charlotte’s Maguro with Somen, Leek Broth, and Crispy Squid

Serves 2

2/3 – ¾ lbs. of Sashimi-grade Tuna steaks

2 “bands” of somen noodles

For the marinade:

2 generous tablespoons of sake

2 generous tablespoons of soy sauce

1 clove of garlic, finely diced

1 teaspoon of mirin

1 squeeze of lime juice, but yuzu is ideal

Combine the marinade ingredients in a shallow bowl, give it a stir, and set it aside for now.

For the broth:

1 heaped tablespoon of miso

3 tablespoons of soy sauce

1 tablespoon of mirin

1 tablespoon of rice vinegar

a small drizzle of sesame oil

1 leek, white and light green part only, thinly sliced

3-4 shitake mushrooms, stems removed, thinly sliced

1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated finely

In a saucepan over low heat, add the liquid ingredients.  Then whisk in the miso.  Make sure to whisk until thoroughly incorporated, so as not to leave any clumps.  Then add three cups of water, and bring it to just below a simmer.  Finally, add the ginger, mushrooms, and leeks, and set it on the back burner on low heat until you’re ready to serve.

For the Squid:

2-3 small squid, (cleaned, bodies only)

¼ cup of Panko

1 cup of vegetable oil

Pinch of salt

Cut the squid crossways to make rings.  Place the rings in paper lunch bag or small Ziploc bag with the panko and a pinch of salt and shake.  Heat the vegetable oil to 350˚ in a very small sauce pan and carefully drop in the rings.  They will turn golden brown in about a minute or ninety seconds.  Remove the rings onto a paper towel to drain and sprinkle with a little salt immediately.  Be careful not to eat them all before dinner.

Then get the noodles started.  Somen noodles only take about three minutes in vigorously boiling, unsalted water to cook. 

Sear the tuna.  You can make the tuna on your grill, but since its only cooking for about a minute on each side, this is probably overkill.  Instead, just get your grill pan super hot, lay the tuna in (unseasoned), and sear, for about a minute on each side.  Please do not overcook this fish or it will become mealy and horrible.  A note to the novice:  the fish will be a beautiful red/pink on the inside – and that’s how we want it.  (Red if you’re using yellowfin, pink if you’re using albacore.)

Let it rest for a few minutes and slice into ¼ inch pieces.  Then place these pieces in the waiting marinade for about a minute or two on each side.  This has the advantage of giving you time to plate.

To serve:  Place two ladlefuls of broth in the bottom of a shallow bowl.  Heap the noodles atop the broth.  Then arrange the tuna slices atop the noodles.  Finally, sprinkle the bowl nonchalantly with the crispy squid rings.

Serve with at least one Asahi Super Dry.  Please, seriously, do this.

Playlist included Shugo Tokumaru’s whimsical Parachute, and of course the LiT Soundtrack (nerds, I mean serious fans like me, have the bound, deluxe edition).

September 15, 2010

Slice of Columbus 2010

What a great group of volunteers Nationwide Children’s Hospital has in its Development Board.  They all work so hard to raise funds for a truly world-class hospital.

The 21st annual Slice of Columbus gathered 20 local pizza shops to vie the title of  “Best in Columbus.”  A huge crowd of enthusiastic pie tasters thronged the LC Pavillion to taste offerings from diverse shops such as Adriatico’s,  Sparano’s, Late Night Slice and Mellow Mushroom.

Winners included Creno’s (Judges Favorite) and People’s Choice went to Romeo’s.

I personally tasted and judged only about half the offerings, but enjoyed every moment of it.  The band played loud, beer and cold beverages flowed and my tablemates and fellow judges cracked wise.  It was a great night.

The true winners of the event are all of the children the hospital will be able to serve.  I was happy to do my small part to help.

September 9, 2010

Running with Artemis | Bodega for Happy Hour


Extra Meaty Pizza, Chicken Tikka and my new favorite beer: Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale. Oh. So. Good!

I adore my Hades, my husband.  He gifted me an evening out, managing Cherub at home.  A job in and of itself.  I enjoyed an evening out with fellow Goddess Artemis at Bodega.  Awesome bar nibbles.  Yes, yes, I know you know about $1 grilled cheese on Mondays. But what about their Chicken Tikka small plate or their All Meat Pizza?  You haven’t had that?  PK reccomends you pair that with their sassy waitstaff and tremendous draft beers. Persephone’s new fave is the Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale.  What more could you ask for, really?  Maybe bar specials?  Well, they have you covered there, love: 4 to 8 weekdays, half off drafts.

Playlist included anything by Badly Drawn Boy, our waiter.  Who makes tremendous beer recs.

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