Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Pineapple sauce

Made a tasty sauce with some fresh leftover pineapple a few weeks ago. The acid here will help it keep well, like a ketchup.

2 cups fresh pineapple, cubed
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp. minced ginger, or 1 tbsp ginger juice.
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup ketchup
1 tbsp. white wine or cider vinegar (unseasoned rice vinegar is optional)
1 tbsp lemon juice
Pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
Salt to taste

In small saucepot, heat pineapple, sugar and water, and ginger juice. Cook for 15-20 minutes until pineapple is soft. Remove from heat, add pineapple to blender and blend until smooth. Add back to saucepot, and whisk in, ketchup, vinegar, lemon juice, and optional chili flakes. Heat for 5 minutes. Adjust seasonings to taste. Strain and serve.

Customize it: consider adding some lime juice, or some fruit zest.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Scallops with Limoncello Thyme Sauce

Made scallops from the ATK recipe on Wed. night. They were prev. frozen, but still pretty good. I think the key for searing is high heat, big pan (so as not to crowd them), just a LITTLE oil (maybe a 1-2 tbsp), and at least 3 minutes on the initial side undisturbed.

ATK suggested a lemon/thyme/wine sauce, I decided to switch it up and do it limoncello. It was a good call!

Limoncello Thyme Sauce

1 shallot, minced (or about 3 tbsp onion, minced)
4 cloves garlic, roasted in cast iron, then minced/mashed
1/2 cup limoncello
Zest of one lemon
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp fresh thyme
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
Salt + pepper to taste

Drain fat from scallop pan. Return to medium-high heat. Add 1 tbsp butter, and saute shallot for 3 minutes, until soft. Add garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Add limoncello, and cook for 30 seconds. Remove from heat, add zest, lemon juice, thyme, and whisk in remaining 2 tbsp butter. Adjust with salt & pepper. Add scallops, and heat for 1 minute or so.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Jose Andres' Aioli

This recipe is a neat exercise in technique.

From Mark Bittman: "When I joined Jose (Andres) for an early dinner with his friends on a hilltop in the Pyrenees, I expected a relaxing day. Yet as everyone set about the simple task of grilling big coils of butifarra (Catalonian sausages), pig's feet, lamb chops, peppers, and onions, he put me to work on this three-ingredient sauce that took 30 arduous minutes. I was ordered to make it without using a food processor, and, I must say, it was worth it to observe the old-fashioned alchemy of a sauce gradually emulsifying before my eyes. Fortunately, this pungent emulsion (essentially aioli made without egg) can be made in a food processor. Use it sparingly, as it packs a wallop of garlicky flavor."

Ali-i-oli (aioli)

Salt to taste
2 tablespoons minced garlic (roughly chopped if you're using a food processor)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

To make my hand, add a pinch of salt and the garlic to a mortar and steadily pound the garlic with a pestle. Add a few drops of the oil, continue pounding, and repeat until the mixture begins to emulsify. When an emulsion starts to form, you can add the oil a little faster. Continue until the sauce is completely emulsified and at the thickness you like, about 30 minutes.

To make by machine, put the garlic in a blender or a food processor and turn the machine on. While it's running, add the oil in a slow, steady stream. When an emulsion starts to form, you can add it a little faster. It's done when it's full emulsified and at the thickness you like. Salt to taste and serve.

customized pulled pork

Bought a 5lb pork shoulder today, on sale, for $5, from Vons. Decided to cook it up, but it took nearly 8 hours (cooked to 175 deg internal, because I'm gonna slice/chop it).

Took 3 stages of prep:

1. Slather
2. Rub
3. Mop

Here are the related recipes:

1/4 cup Tecate or other light-flavored beer
3 tbsp prepared yellow mustard
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp louisiana hot sauce (like Red Rooster)
1 tsp worceshire sauce
Fresh ground pepper
Salt to taste

Whisk to combine. Taste to adjust mustard, etc.

this one is Wolfie Puck's. I like its sweeter flavor.
4 tbsp brown sugar
4 tbsp onion powder
4 tbsp garlic powder
4 tbsp thyme
4 tbsp oregano
2 tbsp mild paprika
2 tbsp hot paprika
4 tsp cayenne pepper
4 tsp ground coriander
4 tsp ground black pepper (or 2+2 black + white pepper; that's the original recipe)
2 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp dry mustard (I don't see the mustard in his original recipe, but looks like I add this)
OPTIONAL: a few shakes of hickory smoke powder

Mop: made this one up myself, but inspired by some recipes in Paul Kirk's book; the jack + brown sugar, along with the "holiday spices" give it a (strangely) fruity, pleasant quality.

1/2 cup Jack Daniels
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp cider vinegar
1 tsp worceshire sauce
1 tsp louisiana hot sauce
1 tsp soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp garlic powder
pinch allspice
pinch cloves
pinch cinammon

Bring to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes.

The whole process:

  1. Pat shoulder dry
  2. Slather with slather sauce.
  3. Sprinkle with rub, and let sit for 15 minutes.
  4. Bake at 250 degrees, unwrapped, for about 4 hours.
  5. At 4 hours, FLIP the roast, and rotate it.
  6. Then start the mop; mop about every 30 minutes; cook for about 4 more hours.
  7. For slicing, 165-175 degrees is optimal; for pulling, it's 195-205 degrees. Use a thermometer to check.
Enjoy some delicious pork!