Saturday, April 14, 2012
The Daring Cooks Play Roulette
Something is seriously wrong with me. No, I'm not dying, but I am pretty sure I have become crazy. See, it all started about three months ago when our coffee maker went nuts. One day, instead of making a full pot of normal strength coffee it made 2 cups of triple strength coffee. And then the next day it made a full pot of hot water. And then the next day it wouldn't even turn on. Any normal person would go out and replace it immediately, right? Well, apparently not me. I've been switching back and forth between a french press and a percolator for three months now.
And while it definitely takes a little longer for my morning cup of sunshine now, it has been working ok. Until this week. Joel started a new rotation this month, and he has been going in super early in the morning, before the hospital's cafe opens up. Which means he can't get his morning cup of coffee. He can't babysit the stove and take a shower at the same time, and so that has left only one option. And it's probably not the one you think. Because instead of going out to the store and buying a new coffee maker like anyone in their right mind would, I've been getting up at 4:30 to make my darling a cup of coffee. At least I have been going back to bed afterward, but by 2:00 I am draaaaaaaaging. I don't know how Joel does it.
The really crazy part of this story comes into play now, when I tell you that I went to Wal-Mart this morning, and spent a good 20 minutes looking at coffee makers. But didn't buy one! I did a fantastic job of turning up my nose at them all, either being too expensive, not enough cups, too many buttons, whatever the issue, I could find something wrong with it, until finally Ladybug decided that enough was enough and we left. And that is why I am crazy. Seriously.
Our April 2012 Daring Cooks hosts were David & Karen from Twenty-Fingered Cooking. They presented us with a very daring and unique challenge of forming our own recipes by using a set list of ingredients!
I almost skipped this challenge. Not because I didn't think I couldn't do it, but because I was kind of too tired to put forth the mental capacity to actually think about it. But then Shelley started taunting me and calling me "scardy-cat", among other names, so I decided to go ahead and give it a try. I have been craving a good steak lately, so I thought I would try my hand at broiling them for the first time. They turned out ok, but probably would have been better if I hadn't bought the cheapest toughest steaks available at the store. But the flavor was good, and I enjoyed the goat cheese/butter on the top! The cauliflower and parsnips puree, however, is an entirely different story. Oh sweet deliciousness, I could have eaten it all. I almost did, actually, because I went back for seconds, and it was too amazing to throw it away, so I ate as much as I could possibly handle. We also served these awesome honey cornmeal muffins as well, but I forgot to take pictures of them.
Maple Mustard Glazed Balsamic Steaks with Goat Cheese
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup maple syrup
2 TBSP Dijon mustard
3 tsp thyme
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 ounces crumbled goat cheese
2 TBSP butter, at room temperature
In a large ziplock bag, mix together the vinegar, maple syrup, mustard and thyme.
Add steaks to the bag, seal and place in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
Remove the steaks from the marinade and sprinkle the salt and pepper evenly over both sides.
Heat the broiler to high.
Grease a broiler pan-rack, place the steaks on the pan and broil for about 6 minutes on each side (for medium-rare).
In a bowl, mix together the butter and goat cheese until smooth.
Spread the goat cheese on the top of each steak and broil for another 30 seconds.
Roasted Garlic Cauliflower and Parsnip Mash
1 large head of cauliflower, cut into pieces
3 small parsnips, peeled and sliced into 1" chunks
salt and pepper
3 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
2 TBSP olive oil
1/2 cup (give or take) milk
2 TBSP (give or take) butter
Preheat oven to 400.
Place the parsnips, shallot, garlic, and olive oil on a jelly roll pan lined with foil.
Roast for 30 minutes, turning occasionally, until nicely golden.
Puree until smooth, adding in the milk and butter, and season with salt and pepper.