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Buttermilk Clouds

Mediterranean Ribeye Steaks With Pierogies à la Vodka

Mediterranean steak
I have been wanting to make this one since I had a sample from Publix Apron's. It really was good. Like a meal you would get from a nice restaurant.

Here is what you need to round up to make it happen.

And here is how it all goes together.

Mediterranean Ribeye Steaks

3 cups fresh spinach
1 1/2 pounds boneless beef ribeye steaks
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup pre-diced red onions
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
2 tablespoons sun-dried tomato pesto

1. Chop spinach coarsely and place in microwave-safe bowl. Cover and microwave on HIGH 2–3 minutes or until tender. Drain thoroughly.
2. Preheat large sauté pan on medium 2–3 minutes. Cut steaks into 4 portions; sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Wash hands.
3. Place butter in pan; swirl to coat. Add steaks, using tongs, and onions; cook steaks 5–6 minutes on each side or until internal temperature reaches 145°F for medium-rare. (Use meat thermometer to accurately ensure desired doneness; adjust time as needed.)
4. Meanwhile, stir feta cheese, bread crumbs, and tomato pesto into spinach, mixing thoroughly. During last two minutes of steak cook time, spread 1/4 cup spinach mixture over top of steaks. Carefully turn steaks and spinach mixture over to heat topping; cook 1–2 more minutes until golden and slightly crusty. Gently turn steaks over and serve.
NOTE: This topping may also be browned, using an oven broiler.

Pierogies à la Vodka

1 (16.9-ounce) package frozen potato/Cheddar pierogies
1 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 cups vodka pasta sauce
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1 tablespoon shredded Parmesan cheese

1. Place pierogies, water, and butter in medium saucepan; cover and bring to boil on medium-high. Boil 2–3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Remove lid; boil 1–2 more minutes, stirring often, until most of liquid is absorbed.
3. Gently stir in pasta sauce; reduce heat to medium. Cook 3–4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thoroughly heated and begins to thicken. Stir in pine nuts; sprinkle with cheese before serving.

I left out the pine nuts, because I'm not that evolved. Pine nuts seem foreign to me, therefore I don't cook with them. Vodka sauce was a huge step for me!

The other thing is I think I put the onions in the skillet too soon and they got too brown (or black if the truth be told). Plus I think I wouldn't cook the topping part quite as long as stated in the recipe...it seemed to be too brown also. Even with that, the meal turned out awesome!!!

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By: Sharon Pickering | 8/26/2007 at 5:27 PM | | If you want, you can leave a comment by clicking here.

40 Cloves and a Chicken

If you haven't figured it out yet, I love kitchen items. One item that I bought before we moved and didn't have an opportunity to use before today is a Tagine or Tajine. I really don't know the correct spelling or how to pronounce it, but I love it just the same. I do know it is of African/Moroccean origin. The premise behind it is slow cooking. And from what I gather, it can be in the oven or on top of the stove. If used on top of the stove, a heat diffuser should be used. I have been researching how to use this ceramic cooker, and I believe that it really is meant to be use stove top. Reason? The cone shape lid allows for condensation to form and keep the foods moist. If used in an oven, I think the lid would become too hot and the moisture would dry up. Just my idea. Anyway, it is meant for slow cooking. I put my dish on for 3 hours on the lowest setting on my glass top stove with wonderful results.

Enough history. On to the recipe. This is one I have heard about for ages and stumbled across a simple recipe from Alton Brown. (My hero.) Today I made it. Yes, it really did have 40 cloves of garlic. And, oh, did it smell good while it was cooking.


40 Cloves and a Chicken

1 whole chicken (broiler/fryer) cut into 8 pieces
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
10 sprigs fresh thyme
40 peeled cloves garlic
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Toss with a 2 tablespoons olive oil and brown on both sides in a wide fry pan or skillet over high heat. Remove from heat, add oil, thyme, and garlic cloves. Cover and bake for 1 1/2 hours.

Remove chicken from the oven, let rest for 5 to 10 minutes, carve, and serve.

*MY CHANGES: I didn't have fresh thyme, so I sprinkled some dry over the chicken. I did have a rosemary plant, so I snipped a couple pieces off and added that to the pot. I didn't use quite as much olive oil as stated in the recipe. I just poured a little over, but didn't measure. One thing I would do differently next time is brown the chicken pieces a little longer. I was trying to get it going and skimped on that step, but it still turned out wonderful!

I made some Buttermilk Bread for one purpose. Read carefully. You don't want to miss this. Use a basting brush to get some of the pan juices on each slice. Nest get a clove of garlic and spread it on like butter. You can spread the pan juices on the bread, broil it so it gets nice and toasty, then spread the garlic. We just couldn't wait for the broiling process and dug in. Oh, mashed potatoes are wonderful with this. Stir a clove of garlic in each helping. You can not believe how mild and almost sweet the garlic becomes with a slow cooking process. Save all your left over garlic for garlic bread, or stir into a salad dressing. Folks, this stuff is some seriously good eating.

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By: Sharon Pickering | 8/05/2007 at 3:38 PM | | If you want, you can leave a comment by clicking here.