Sunday, January 27, 2008

Pollo alla Cacciatora for dinner

Tonight's dinner...

After finding some chicken thighs on sale at Byerly's for a mere 99 cents a pound, I decided that was a good enough of an excuse to make a pot of pollo alla cacciatora.

The recipe was based on this one, except that I added a ton of crushed red pepper to make it spicy! In addition, the mixed olives I bought at Byerly's olive bar were marinated in a peppery olive oil, so those contributed some heat as well.

I served it over spaghetti and gilded the lily with a tangle of julienned prosciutto on top. Leftovers are going to be mighty tasty for my lunches at work this week! :)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Meat loaf on a chilly night

We had another evening with the temperatures well below zero. How about a little winter comfort food? Last night I whipped up an outstanding meat loaf.

To make the meat loaf, I really used two different recipes. The primary recipe is based on Alton Brown's meat loaf recipe, which is my meat loaf recipe of choice. But I was also inspired by Bobby Flay's meat loaf and incorporated his balsamic-ketchup glaze.

The meat loaf was delicious and incredibly flavorful. The balsamic-ketchup glaze not only adds a tangy zip, but it also creates some beautiful and tasty caramelized bits on the top of the loaf.

I am already looking forward to the leftovers! :)

Saturday, January 12, 2008

In praise of the small town meat market

This past weekend, I had the opportunity to experience a real treat; visiting a small town meat market.

I stopped in the town of Kimball, MN where I visited the Knaus Sausage House. This is a place I had not been to in years, yet I was somewhat familiar with it. We used to stop here for beef sticks en route to Grandma and Grandpa's place!

I loaded up on an assortment of goodies; their famous beef jerky, buffalo teriyaki sticks, smoked pork chops, bratwurst, smoked mettwurst, hot dogs, and a couple of different kinds of summer sausage. Everything I have tried has been most delicious.

For dinner on Saturday, I simply seared one of the smoked pork chops. The chop was nice and thick, delicately smoked, and had a texture that was almost similar to ham. With a little BBQ sauce on the side for dipping, it made for a tasty meal.

Friday, January 04, 2008

What is on tap?

Beer is a food, so I can talk about it on my blog!

For Christmas, I was given this 1.3 gallon mini-keg of Bell's Two Hearted Ale. I thought this was such a cool gift, and I tapped it over New Year's. The beer is very flavorful and hoppy, kind of like a good bitter ale. Nice stuff, and it would make a great summer beer.

As you can see, though, my pouring needs some work... :)

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

New Year's eats

I've been eating very well over the New Year's holiday.

On Sunday night, I made a homemade pizza. Pepperoni, Canadian bacon, mushrooms, green peppers, green and black olives, and a combination of fresh mozzarella and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses piled on top of my homemade pizza dough that uses a blend of freshly milled whole-wheat flour and unbleached all-purpose flour. Delicious!

And for New Year's Eve, I celebrated with some of Giada's balsamic roasted chicken and some steamed Brussels sprouts. I have not made this in ages, and I just love the deeply lacquered, tangy skin. The meat stays incredibly moist, and I can't wait to have some leftovers for lunch! :)

Happy New Year!