Archive | July, 2011

Boozy Iced Coffee

29 Jul

It’s Friday!

You know what? Rebecca Black ruined that for me. Every time I hear someone say “It’s Friday!!” her song starts playing in my head.

“It’s Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friday. Everybody’s lookin’ forward to the weekend.”

Fortunately, Friday is the perfect day for cold, boozy, beverage. So here it is. Boozy iced coffee. I’m sure there are tons of variations of this out there, this is just a guideline. Add more or coffee, milk or booze. As far as the booze goes, I would err on the side of more.

You could also switch up the liqueurs you use. I stuck with my good friend Bailey’s Irish Cream and also Kahlua Coffee Liqueur. You could also use Frangelico, Amaretto or that Godiva chocolate liqueur! (kicking myself for not doing that myself!)

Ok I’m out for the weekend, I’ll see you all on Monday with a kick a$$ pizza recipe!

“partyin’, partyin’, YEAH!”

Boozy Iced Coffee: 

Makes 1 Large Coffee

2 oz Baileys
1 oz Kahlua 
1/2 cup Strong Brewed Coffee (cold) 
1/2 Cup Milk
3 tbsp Chocolate Syrup
1/2 cup Ice
In a glass or 500 ml Canning Jar pour in the chocolate syrup and rotate the glass around so the chocolate comes up the side of the glass a bit. Add half of the ice to the glass. Shake the Baileys, Kahlua, Coffee and Milk with the rest of the ice in a martini shaker. Pour over ice in glass and serve.

Beef Lettuce Wraps

28 Jul

A couple of days ago, I was asked if I could come up with a recipe for Beef Lettuce Wraps. I knew it wouldn’t be a difficult task, but that wasn’t the part that worried me. If you think that dinner without carbohydrates would go over well in my household, well, you obviously don’t know me as well as I thought.

Stuff some fillings in a tortilla, pita, bun, bagel or between two pieces of bread and I will scarf it down with absolutely no regard for my daily caloric intake. Stuff something in a lettuce leaf and try to pass it off as dinner and I will roll into the fetal position and comfort myself by eating a pound of bacon stuffed in a loaf of french bread.

What I’m trying to say is… I likey me carbs.

 However, I was pleasantly surprised at how satisfying these were. Beef in an Asian style sauce, topped with a boatload of veggies and crushed peanuts. It was the perfect combination.

It also may have helped that a friend demanded I order an entire Greek Chicken Souvlaki dinner for lunch yesterday. And by demanded, I mean she casually told me she was ordering Greek food for lunch and I jumped out of my chair and screamed TZATZIKI SAUCE!

Either way I was still kind of full by dinner time.

All jokes aside, if you wanted to make these a little more filling, you could always add some steamed rice or noodles to the mix.

 Mmm saucey!
These wraps pack lots of flavor, crunch and freshness. I’m pretty sure you could even eat these if you were on a low carb diet, but why would you want to do that?
Beef Lettuce Wraps:

Serves 4

4 tbsp Soy Sauce
2 tbsp Hoisin Sauce
Juice of Two Limes
2 tbsp Brown Sugar
1 tbsp Fresh Grated Ginger
2 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 tsp Sesame Oil
1 tbsp Siracha Chili Sauce (only if you like it spicy)
1 lb (16 oz) strip steak cut into thin strips (you could also use the pre-cut stirfry beef they usually have at the grocery store)
1 tbsp Peanut Oil
1 Red Pepper, thinly julienned
2 Medium Carrots, thinly julienned
1 cup Beansprouts
1/4 cup Thinly Chopped Green Onion
1/2 Cup Roasted Salted Peanuts, crushed or chopped roughly
1 Head of Leaf Lettuce, washed, dried and separated into leaves.

Mix together all of the sauce ingredients, add the beef and stir until coated. Heat a large pan or wok over medium heat, add the peanut oil and heat. Add the beef to the hot pan and stir-fry until cooked through and sauce is thickened, approximately 4-5 minutes. Remove to a bowl and garnish with one teaspoon of the green onion. Serve with little bowls of each of the veggies, peanuts, green onions and the lettuce leaves so that everyone can make their own wraps the way they like them.


Crème Brûlée with Earl Grey Misto Reduction

25 Jul

This sounds fancy doesn’t it? Fancy shmancy.

If I tell you something, will you promise not to tell anyone? Shhhhh…..This recipe is easy as pie! Technically, it is as easy as a custard baked in a bain marie, but we won’t go there.

The best thing about crème brûlée is that it will wow your guests and make them think you are a domestic goddess, when really you spent the entire afternoon watching reruns of My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding and Diners, Drive Ins and Dives.

But seriously, once you get the custard mixed up, you just bake the little babies, let them chill, and then you’re ready to torch ’em. Torching things is really fun. Unfortunately enough for me, Mr. Delish is a pyromaniac and insists on doing the best part of this recipe, every time.

When your guests get their little ramekin, they get to use their spoon to bust through the sugar crust and dig in to the creamy custard below. The combination of the crunchy, caramelized, sugar crust and the creamy, vanilla-ey, custard, is just perfect. Everyone who eats one will think, who is this domestic goddess? She really can do it all! Meanwhile, you’re crying inside because you know you have 3 loads of laundry at home and you violently threw all the dishes you used to make these into the sink and left them haphazardly in a giant pile. Just so you could fit in a nap before dinner. Luckily you can turn to your crème brûlée for comfort in your time of need.

P.S none of these examples were me yesterday. Nope. Not me.

Please excuse the weird photos, it was dark and I wasn’t in the comfort of my own home, in sweatpants and my hair in a messy bun, I just wasn’t in my comfort zone.

You should make these the next time you have guests over, or when you are asked to bring dessert to a dinner party, or on a Monday night when you plan to watch the Food Network in your pajamas for the entire evening. I wouldn’t tell anyone.

Crème Brûlée with Earl Grey Misto Reduction

Makes 8 Servings

For the Custards:

3 cups Heavy Whipping Cream
8 Egg Yolks
1/3 cup Granulated Sugar
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
8 cups Boiling Water

For Earl Grey Misto Reduction:

1 1/2 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
2 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 tsp Granulated Sugar
4 Earl Grey Tea Bags

For Sugar Crust and Garnish:

1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
16 Rasperries

For the Custard:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a saucepan, heat cream over medium high heat until steaming. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg yolks and sugar. Pour the hot cream into the egg mixture, whisking constantly until combined. Whisk in the vanilla.

Grab two cake pans, put 4 ramekins in each pan and fill with boiling water, the water should come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Divide mixture between the 8 ramekins, filling 3/4 of the way full.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until the edges are set, but the center still jiggles. Remove to a wire rack and let cool. Once completely cooled, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1-2 hours until cold.

For the Earl Grey Misto Reduction:

Heat the cream in a saucepan over medium high heat, until steaming. Whisk in the sugar and vanilla and bring to a simmer. Add tea bags and let steep for 8-10 minutes. Remove the tea bags and discard. Continue simmering the cream mixture for another 15 – 20 minutes until thickened. Pour through a fine mesh sieve and set aside.

Finishing the custards:

Sprinkle each of the custards with about 1 teaspoon of sugar, rotate the custards around so the sugar coats the entire surface. Use a kitchen torch to caramelize the sugar, just until it is golden brown. Make sure to do this within an hour or two of serving to make sure the crust is nice and crunchy when served.

Top with a dollop of the Earl Grey Misto Reduction and a couple of raspberries for garnish (mint would be nice too!)

Chocolate Butterscotch Pot de Creme

22 Jul

Oh hi there! I feel like I have been away for a while. Things have been busy and so I haven’t been cooking at home much. I’m scared to look in my vegetable drawer, I think things may be dying in there.

My Aunt and Uncle from the East Coast have been visiting this week and they brought us a whole load of lobster from Nova Scotia! I’m talking a lot of lobster. Like 12 whole lobsters…when there were 6 people eating. There also may have been a pound of butter melted into garlic butter. Oh boy, I am still full from that dinner. We have a lot of leftover lobster. No leftover garlic butter though. Hm, I don’t think I want to do the math on how much garlic butter I ingested last night, we won’t go there. Tonight we’re using the leftover lobster to use in place of shrimp in these Veggie Salad Rolls.

Anyways, the point of this story was that I made one of my most requested dessert dishes of all time. I have a few people in my life that never get tired of this recipe and force me into making it constantly. Mostly Mr. Delish; he would eat these for breakfast, lunch and dinner if I had enough ramekins.

This is chocolatey, butterscotchey, crunchy, creamalicious, goodness in a cup. Yes those are all words, I checked.

Woah. You’re gonna love this one. Just be careful because you might be roped into making this recipe for all eternity once you serve this.

I guess being stuck with chocolate and butterscotch and crunchy skor pieces for all eternity isn’t so bad.

Chocolate Butterscotch Pot de Creme:

2 cups Heavy Cream, Divided Use
8 tbsp Demerera Sugar, Divided Use (you can also use dark brown sugar or even just regular old light brown sugar but the butterscotch flavor will be less strong with the lighter sugars)
1/4 tsp Salt
6 tbsp Water
4 whole Egg Yolks
1/2 tsp Vanilla
8 ounces, weight Milk Chocolate
2 bars Skor Candy Bars, Chopped

Preheat oven to 300 Degrees F.

In a small saucepan, combine 1 1/2 cups of the heavy cream, 6 tablespoons of the demerera sugar and the salt to a simmer over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Then turn to low to keep warm.

In another saucepan, combine water and the remaining 2 tablespoons of demerera sugar. Cook on medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved and then continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and bubbling (approximately 5 minutes.) Remove from heat and pour in cream mixture, whisking until combined.

In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and vanilla and continue whisking as you add the hot cream mixture in a stream.

Pour an equal amount of custard into each of six ramekins. Place the ramekins in a roasting pan filled with water (enough to go about half way up the sides of the ramekins) and bake in a hot water bath, uncovered until the custards are set around the edges but still jiggly in the center, about 40 minutes. Remove from pan with tongs and allow to cool until room temperature. They will continue to set as they cool.

While they are cooling, add the chopped milk chocolate (I usually use one of the large lindt “creamy” chocolate bars which works out to about a cup and a half of chopped chocolate) and remaining 1/2 cup of heavy cream in a double boiler over medium low heat. Stir until chocolate is melted and then pour over the cooled custards, lifting up each custard and turning them to make sure the chocolate coats the entire top of the custard. Allow to cool at room temperature. The chocolate will never fully set, it is meant to be gooey!

If you are not serving them right away cover and refrigerate. When ready to serve, top with the chopped Skor bar. I prefer them when they are ice cold right out of the fridge, but they are just as good at room temp.

Pulled Pork in Red Wine Gravy

19 Jul

Okay, Okay, so this isn’t something I would typically make in the middle of July, but you know what? My city has decided it didn’t want to provide me with typical July weather. I spent the last 5 days camping in the rain, and I’m cold. I’m cold and damp and I needed to eat something that was braised in a dutch oven.

I bought country style pork ribs that were originally destined to be slathered with a sweet and tangy sauce and barbecued, maybe served with grilled corn on the cob and coleslaw, but I don’t barbecue in the rain. So yesterday I whipped out the dutch oven I haven’t used since February and got to work.

Guess what? Photographing gravy soaked meat is difficult. It seemed like no matter what I did, it always ended up looking like I was taking a picture of dog food. Sorry for the mental picture, I can assure you it did not taste like dog food, it was real good.

I served this with mashed potatoes and Mr. Delish’s favorite garlicky green beans. It was yummy and it kind of felt like it was January and you know what? I was okay with that for one night but now I’m back to being bitter. What the heck Vancouver?!

Pulled Pork in Red Wine Gravy:

2 lbs Country Style Pork Ribs Cut into pieces
1 cup Flour
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp Pepper
3 tbsp Olive Oil
1 medium Sweet Onion, Chopped
2 medium Carrots, Chopped
2 Cloves of Garlic, Minced
2 cups Dry Red Wine ( I used Chianti)
2 cups Water
More salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees.

In a shallow dish, mix together flour, salt and pepper. Dredge each piece of pork in the flour until thoroughly coated, set aside.

In a large dutch oven over medium heat, add olive oil and heat until oil is very hot. Add the pork pieces and brown on all sides, you will probably have to do this in two batches. Remove to a plate covered in paper towels and set aside.

While the pot is still hot, add your onion and carrot and saute until soft, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom, about 3-5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for another minute. Add the wine and water and season with salt and pepper. Place the pork pieces in the liquid, they should not all be completely submerged, and place the lid on the pot. Bake for 2 1/2 to 3 hours until pork is very soft and pulls apart easily.

Remove the pork pieces from the liquid and keep warm in a bowl. Strain the liquid and add it back to the pot over medium heat. Heat the liquid until it thickens slightly, about 5-8 minutes. In the meantime, use two forks to shred the pork, removing any fatty pieces and bones. Add the meat to the gravy and warm for 2-3 minutes. Serve with pasta, mashed potatoes, polenta or rice. Leftovers would be great on a toasted bun, hello pulled pork sandwich!


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