Sunday, December 30, 2007

Post-Christmas Roughage

I'm still waiting on Christmas food pictures, but we've been eating well since then. I always crave lighter, strong-tasting foods after a big holiday.

Here's Mike with a post-Christmas sale find: a chili-pepper light swag! I don't know what it has to do with Christmas, but it was still half off at Wal-Mart! He's also sporting his new apron: Too Hot to Handle!!!

Grilled Salmon with a spicy glaze that caramelized wonderfully on the Egg. With roasted red potatoes and steamed green beans.

Morgan approved of the fish!!

From tonight's dinner: I tried a new technique with the bread, based off a recipe I found in Taste of Home - I let the dough mix in the bread machine, rolled the dough into about 20 balls, and dipped each ball in a mixture of butter and minced garlic. Then they all went into a bread pan and onto the Egg for cooking! We haven't done much bread on the Big Green Egg, so this was a learning experience. I don't think using a half whole-wheat dough works too well with this recipe! It was good, but not as light as I'd like it to be.

This stuff redeemed the bread: roasted garlic! Mike lopped off the top of two head of garlic and wrapped them in double thickness aluminum foil with some olive oil, then threw it on the Egg for about 30 minutes. It went on the bread, and also on top of the sirloin steak, as you can see below:

Mike says he wishes he had marinated the sirloin, and I tend to agree. Still tasty, though, especially with all that glorious garlic!!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Today we went to downtown Mount Dora and had lunch at The Frosty Mug, and Icelandic Pub. It was so cool! What a unique place.

Not food-related, but the wood floors were so beautiful I couldn't resist taking a picture!

And that was the lunch portion!! Me with my fish and chips. The haddock is imported from Iceland! I have now decided that I want to go to Iceland.

Onto tonight's dinner. Mike has been enjoying experimenting with his Big Green Egg, as you probably can tell from all the recent postings. Tonight he did a Cornish Game Hen.
Fresh off the Egg. My mom got Mike the Ceramic "Chick'n Sitter" for his birthday - you fill it up with beer and whatever else you want (onion in this case) and unceremoniously shove it the the bird's butt. Nice.

All plated up with brown rice and roasted green beans. The meat was tender and flavorful, but my favorite part of the meal was this:
Beer Bread from the Egg, with Garlic and Chipolte Cheddar Cheese from Sargento. This was sooooooooooooo goooooood! I highly recommend that you try the Chipolte Cheddar, by the way. It's great on everything!
Dinner Photos

Honey-Chicken Stir Fry from Quick Cooking. This recipe is going into my stir-fry rotation, to be switched off with my black bean and garlic stir-fry sauce that I get from

Grilled Salmon from the Big Green Egg, with roasted potatoes (also on the Egg), and steamed green beans and corn, topped with Parmesan cheese. The salmon was drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with Penzey's Tuscan Sunset. The potatoes cooked a little faster than Mike expected, so they were singed on one side, but the fish was peeeeerfect...

Another dinner from the Egg: hamburgers, tator tots , and steamed broccoli.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Food Pictures

First up, the Key Lime pie I made for Mike's birthday. Plain ole' pie, plain ole' Nila Wafer Crust...Mike and I have been together long enough for me to know that he always picks a very simple dessert for his birthday. I always offer to make him something elaborate - truffles, a torte - nope. Pie. But it was good.

Next, a new muffin recipe: Apple-Oat Muffins. These were really good and very satisfying! The recipe calls for two cups of shredded apple, but I can think of many things I'd rather be doing than standing there with my cheese grater and an apple, so I pulsed chopped apple in my food processor a few times and it worked fine. I also used strawberry yogurt instead of plain like the recipe calls for - I usually do this for my recipes because I don't keep plain yogurt around and don't want to wait for my next shopping trip. Give this recipe a try! I'm going to freeze a few and see how they keep.

Next up, tonight's dinner: Pizza on the Big Green Egg!

Let me tell ya: I thought I knew what pizza was. I have never had a pizza until tonight. I could eat this for the rest of my life. This was SO good! Did I mention I really liked this pizza? I did? Well...I LOVED this pizza!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

The Big Green Egg Pulls Through Again...

Beef baby back ribs, broccoli and corn tossed in olive oil and Penzey's Tuscan Sunset (both done on the Egg), along with french fries. Mike says he's still getting used to cooking on his new toy and the rib were a little overdone. I say they were really good!

Sophie on high alert, hoping Daddy will share the wealth!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Old-Fashioned Whoopie Pies

On Friday I tried this recipe from Taste of Home and brought them into the family business so the guys could test them out. I used a one of my new finds from Wal-Mart: Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa Powder. That stuff is the best! It's also great with my mom's famous Microwave Brownie Recipe.

The Whoope Pie recipe calls for buttermilk, which I divide into 1/2 cup baggies and freeze so I always have some on hand. The cookies came out perfect for sandwich-making - firm and flat.

As I was making the icing, I realized that this recipe on the whole is very similar to my Moist Chocolate Cake recipe, which I was very happy about, since I've always had trouble with that cake cracking.

I think the guys at work were more than happy to be the guinea pigs this time :)
Mike's New Toy...

It's a Big Green Egg!!!

When Mike's parents came for Thanksgiving, they brought this as a surprise for Mike. It's his housewarming/birthday/Christmas/New Year/Valentine's Day/Anniversary gift, as my father-in-law is fond of saying. He's had one for a few years, and LOVES it, so I always figured he'd want Mike to have one once we had a house. This is the maiden voyage:

Setting it up

The bounty: ribs, chicken wings, baked potatoes, and corn.

In case you don't know what a Big Green Egg is, it's a ceramic cooker that is used to smoke food, but can also do a lot more. It's a grill, a smoker, and oven that can cook just about any food better than other methods. Check out the website; it's pretty cool. Apparently the Big Green Egg has a small niche, but it is made up of very loyal fans. We've been loving ours so far. Last night we tried a recipe for Honey Mustard Chicken, which was very good. We want to try it using some flavored wood chips for smoking. Stay tuned for more Big Green Egg fun!