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Great Guacamole

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The title of this post makes me want to exclaim Great Guacamole, Batman! But that’s probably only me, and will go away once I completely wake up. In the meantime, I’m envisioning various Batman roles as mexican foods, so am thoroughly amused.

On to the food! This is Alton Brown’s guacamole recipe, and it’s pretty darn good. The few changes I made were substituting salsa for tomatoes, leaving out the jalapeno for a spice-intolerant friend, and added extra garlic. It worked out pretty well for us, though I’d add the jalapeno without seeds in next time for more flavor.

Start by halving, peeling, and seeding the avocados. Then toss it in a bowl with the juice of one lime, minus one reserved tablespoon of the juice.

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Next, add kosher salt, cumin, and cayenne, then mix and mash everything together.

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Posted by on January 9, 2013 in Sauces, pastes, etc

 

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Homemade Peanut Butter

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I’ve heard it a hundred times… “Making your own peanut butter is so easy, and so good!” but never gave it a try until now. So for New Years, I was going to make homemade peanut butter, roll it into balls, and cover it in tempered chocolate. Things interfered with the actual chocolate, so I just got a whole lot of homemade peanut butter… but dang is it good! And SO EASY!

Start with lightly or unsalted peanuts, and roast them in the oven on a baking sheet for 5-6 minutes until brown. What you see here is the first batch, which burned a little, so you want less dark than this. My second batch was amazing though.

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Let the peanuts rest until simply warm to the touch, 10-15 minutes. Then place in a food processor and puree until the proper consistency, scraping down the sides occasionally.

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Posted by on January 6, 2013 in Healthy, Sauces, pastes, etc

 

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Oven Baked Ribs

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I love ribs. They’re absolutely one of my favorite dishes to cook, and I always cook them on a wood pellet bbq for 5 hours until they’re smoky and tender and falling off the bone. Recently, though, I adapted the recipe for an oven specifically to share with you all. It may not have that wonderful smoke flavor of real bbq, but it’s still pretty darn good, and doesn’t involve going out in the rain and cold in the winter, which is a bonus.

Start by preheating an oven to 225°F then removing the memberane on the back of the ribs. I’ve seen a number of methods suggested for doing this, I just pry it up with a fingernail on one edge of the ribs, grip it with a paper towel for better grip, and carefully peel it off the whole rack.

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Next I apply a dry rub to the whole thing. You should probably prepare ahead of time and wrap the ribs in saran wrap and refrigerated for a few hours then let them sit out and reach room temperature, but I almost never have that kind of time, so I just apply the rub and cook.

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Posted by on January 3, 2013 in Entree

 

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Peanut + Noodles + Easy = Win!

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Last night was a long night of shopping (see the nice new white bowl?), so I didn’t even get home until 7, when I started marinating chicken for some kung pao for dinner. As something to put with it, I decided to try Health.com’s warm peanut and sesame noodles. Since it was 9pm, I loved the fact that these were easy. How easy? This easy:

Set a pot of water boiling to cook (for 2) half a box of whole wheat thin spaghetti noodles. Put those noodles in whenever the water reaches a rolling boil, and follow the box instructions for cooking. Then take 3 cloves of garlic and fry them up in some canola oil in a skillet.

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Add in sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, rice wine vinegar, sriracha, creamy peanut butter, and some boiling water. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce is thick, creamy, and hot.

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Posted by on December 6, 2012 in Entree, Healthy

 

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The best soup for a cold

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I don’t like calling a dish the ‘best’ unless it’s truly amazing. After having this soup last night, though, both a fellow sick friend and I felt much, much better. It’s spicy, has a rich broth, and plenty of vegetables and turkey. You could also use any other vegetables you feel like throwing in there, like diced cucumbers, onions, mushrooms, snow peas, or bean sprouts. It’s absolutely fantastic, and I highly recommend it for all those who are sick out there right now.

You start by dicing up a bunch of bok choy (or cabbage if you can’t find any) and scallions, grating some carrots, and mincing a few cloves of garlic and some ginger.

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Pour some sesame oil into a saucepan or stockpot on medium heat, and once the oil is hot, cook the turkey, most of the scallions, the ginger, and the garlic until the turkey is no longer pink.

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Posted by on November 26, 2012 in Healthy, Soup

 

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Incredibly lazy chocolate bliss

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This is, sadly, not the sort of chocolate that you can put together in 5 minutes in the middle of the night when you have a chocolate craving. They need at least two hours to chill, which is really the only thing that detracts from how amazing they are. If you’ve already planned to much for a dinner party and have no dessert, though, these would be amazing. Or because it’s… oh, Tuesday, say.

You’ll need some chocolate chips, a few eggs, a flavored liqueur like grand mariner (I went with a nice minty rumplemize here for a mint/chocolate thing), and hot coffee or cocoa. Whipped cream is optional, but a nice addition.

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I only have two eggs instead of 4, and smaller amounts of everything else, because I’m only doing a batch for two people. Scale as necessary for the number of chocolate fiends you have. Then put the chocolate chips, eggs, booze, and salt in a blender. Pulse for a few seconds until it’s all combined.

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Then pour the coffee in a thin stream through a hole in the lid while the blender’s on. Personally I didn’t do that this time, because it was late, but I should have. Don’t make my mistake, it works out better if you follow the recipe in this case.

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Posted by on November 24, 2012 in Dessert

 

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A Grilled Cheese Revolution

A Grilled Cheese Revolution

If you’re a cheese fan the way I am, and especially a spicy fan, you’re going to love this. I discovered it via the wonderful Joy the Baker (http://joythebaker.com), and became an instant convert. So did everyone else around me. And that was before we added bacon jam to it, and we haven’t even tried the tomato jam on it for the vegetarians. The bacon… raised it to perfection. I’m sure the tomato will do no less.

So, to make this, you need a sourdough loaf, or bread of choice, pepperjack cheese, cream cheese, and jalapenos. That’s it. A little butter is nice, but an olive oil spray or other way to make bread toast better is fine.

First, roast the jalapenos, peel off blackened skins, and dice them. Deseed them if you don’t like spicy, leave the seeds in if you’re like me. Then spread a layer of cream cheese on the bread, and layer with jalapenos.

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Posted by on November 14, 2012 in Sandwich

 

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