Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Straw-Berry Good Ice Cream

So I've been really working on grocery store organization lately.  I've never been good at this phenomenon.  I have all intentions on having a plan, but I get to the store and I either forget my list, or I stray off the list because I have severe GSADD (Grocery Store Attention Deficit Disorder).  And they don't have drugs for this.  So last week, I went to our neighborhood food market, Easy-Way, and I had a plan, but I saw these strawberries and they looked BEAUTIFUL.  They were perfectly colored, perfectly plump and perfectly ripe.  I could smell them the minute I walked into the store.  So I bought them.  And then I took them home and I realized that I have no idea what to do with them.  I thought about making jam, but I don't really eat much jam.  I thought about making pie, but I'm not really a pie eater.  Strawberry shortcake?  Nah.  And then it hit me.  I haven't made ice cream in a while and I have all these strawberries.  So there ya go.  That's how I came up with this.

Here's What You Need:
Recipe for Vanilla Ice Cream (**Note: Instead of whole milk, I used 2% and it came out fine, I also added in a splash of lemon juice and a pinch of salt while warming the milk.)
1 Pint of strawberries, tops removed and smashed (but still chunky)

Here's What You Do:
Once Your Vanilla Ice Cream is in your ice cream machine and begins to look like soft serve, add in your smashed strawberries.  Keep it churning until it's to that ice cream consistency and then freeze it until it's actually hard ice cream. 

OR, if you're me, eat it when your 15 minutes of churning on your ice cream maker is up, because you have absolutely no self control and no patience to sit around when something that delicious awaits you. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Chop, Chop!

Wanna know one of my favorite meals to grill??  Lamb Chops.  I'm in love with anything that you can hold by the bone, dive your teeth into and then rip away at the meat, craning your neck back as if you're avoiding being punched in the face.  It's just so primal.  Sorry PETA and my vegetarian friends, but do you really think that vegetables don't feel pain when you rip them out of their warm, cozy, dirty homes that they have ever so delicately and meticulously placed their roots??

Here's What You Need:   
Lamb chops (I find it very cost effective to buy a rack of lamb from Costco and cut the chops yourself...plus it makes me feel all butchery and I like feeling butchery)
Garlic - about 3-4 cloves, minced.  I love garlic, so the more, the merrier
Rosemary - About 2 tablespoons, chopped up very small
Olive Oil - enough to coat all the sides of your chops, about 1/4 cup
Salt and Pepper

Here's What You Do:
Add your rosemary, garlic, and olive oil to a ziplock bag and mix everything together so all your ingredients are blended nicely.  Add your chops and make sure they are well-coated with all of these delicious aromatics.  Marinate for at least 2 hours.  When you're ready to grill them, fire up the grill.  Salt and pepper both sides of your chops and grill those little lambs for about 3-4 minutes per side depending on their thickness for a good medium rare temperature.  BE CAREFUL though, lamb has a lot of fat and fires LOVE fat (who doesn't? - oh yeah, my ass), so keep a close eye on them and have water handy to put out any fat fires.  

Go to town on those little lambs.  These chops are so flavorful and juicy and perfect for a party.  Serve them with a nice cool salad.  One that has vegetables that have been ripped from their warm, cozy, dirty homes that they have ever so delicately and meticulously placed their roots.  Baa!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Warm Weather Screams Fish Tacos

Something about warm weather makes me crave light, crunchy, fruity things.  I know, it would be more fun to just drink Margaritas all day, but who doesn't love a fish taco.  Especially a homemade fish taco.

Here's What You Need: (this will make about 4-5 tacos)
2 fillets of tilapia, or any white fish
flour tortillas
olive oil
salt and pepper
Paul Prudhomme's blackened redfish magic - which is really quite magical in that it makes EVERYTHING more delicious...try it on burgers and steaks...you'll thank me later and thanks to my brother-in-law for introducing me to this magical seasoning.
Magical Seasoning

Toppings: (Be as creative as you like)
cheese (I didn't use any cheese on these, and I didn't miss it)
cole slaw (I buy a package of shredded cabbage/carrots put 1/2 of the bag in a bowl, add a heaping tablespoon of mayo, a few splashes of apple cider vinegar, some chopped cilantro and chopped green onion and a squirt of Sriracha to it and mix it all together until it tastes good, adding salt and pepper at the end).

Here's What You Do:
Preheat oven to 350.  Drizzle olive oil on both sides of your tilapia and salt and pepper both sides.  Spice those fishies up with some magical seasoning and don't be shy.  The more you add, the more flavorful your tacos will be.  I usually give my fishies a coating that makes them look sunburned.  Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork and is opaque. 

Warm your flour tortillas according to package directions.  Top each tortilla with your flaked fish.  Then add whatever toppings you like. 

I added avocado, mango, slaw, and cilantro and they were the most fresh, bright, sweet, spicy, flavorful fish tacos I ever dove my teeth into.  Restaurant quality if I do say so myself.