Searing a nice Steak

With a few simple steps, you can cook a steak, which is to die for J

Choosing your cut.

Make sure you are on good terms with your local butcher. You do not want some 25 years worn-out milking cow that, just recently been flattened for beef. You want to select a cut of meat that is tender and has plenty of marbling. In general, the best cuts of beef for steak come from the rib, short loin or tenderloin primal cuts.

I went with a lower budget and chose a Rib eye steak, also known as Entrecôte.


 

Cooking the meat

To sear a good steak is it essential to have a good large cast iron skillet.

Make sure your beef has reached room temperature before frying it, give it a 2 hours at living room temperature before you start frying it. If you take it from the fridge to the pan, it will be ruined on the outside, before reaching the right temperature in the core.

Pat your cut dry with a paper towel before frying it. Meat should fry and not boil.

Season the beef with olive oil, and salt, and NOT pepper. The pepper will burn when you fry your steak. Add the pepper just before the steak is done.

It is hard to give exact times on frying times, but here is a rule of thumb, which can take base for your adjustment depending on cut, size and thickness.

VERY RARE (bleu) My personal favourite. It leaves the meat unspoiled, Very soft to the touch, and purple-red of colour. The inner is raw meat, unfortunately to few people loves and respect the food this way. You need a very hot pan with butter and oil, let the steak sear both sides just until browned (about 1 minute each side). Use your fingers to pressure the meat down against the pan, ensuring good contact.

 

RARE (Saignant) Sear for 2 minutes each side and 1 minute on the edge in very hot oil and butter. The steak will still feel soft when touched; the core colour will be red.

 

MEDIUM (à point) Sear for 3 minutes each side and 1 minute on the edge in very hot oil and butter. The steak will offer resistance when touched; the core colour will be pink, and pink juices will bead on the surface of the seared side of the steak when turned.

 

WELL DONE (bien cuit) (ruined) Sear both sides just until browned (about 1 minute each side) and then cook for about 15 minutes in a 170 C (325 F) mark 3 oven. The steak will be very firm when touched; the core colour will no longer be at all pink.

 

After you seared your steak, wrap it up in tinfoil and let it rest 5 min. Allowing the cuts to rest, will allow the heat to slowly heat the core of the steak, it will make the meat tender, and juicy. Do not panic if loses its temperature; just reheat it quickly before you serve. Meanwhile the cuts are resting, take the excess grease and meat juices and make your source.

Guacamole Chilean style

Guacamole is properly one of my favourite dishes. The process of making it is simple, yet often ruined, so when served is it a substance which only resembles Guacamole in colour. The taste and texture is mostly ruined.

Though it takes minutes to mash and rip your avocadoes for the Guacamole, is the other ingredients best prepared hours ahead. This leaves time for the flavours to evolve.

To make the ingredients it is much the same as when making “pebre” you will need

  • 1 pcs finely chopped spring onion
  • 6 pcs. Finely chopped small tomatoes, without the inner seeds.
  • A great deal of coriander
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • ¼ of a Lime juice
  • A teaspoon of strong Chili
  • Minced garlic clove

A great deal of chopping going into this phase, remember to chop super fine, to achieve a delicious result. You absolutely do not want to use any kind of machine. We do not want the inner from the tomatoes so remove them. Mix the ingredients and give it a small amount of oil, then season with salt and pepper. You want the mixture to be a tiny bit on the salty side, while the avocadoes will absorb a lot of the salt. Foil it up and put it on cool for the next hours..


 

Now its minutes before serving and we want to put it together. Here is a hint! Do not use machines, you mash and ripe your avocadoes with a fork. Guacamole it is not a smooth mass, but a chunks of avocadoes.

A little word on avocadoes, first use Hash avocadoes (the dark kind) they are tastier. They have to be soft to the touch. It is easy to check if they turned bad. Remove the bud of the avocadoes, if it is light green in colour, and not brownish it is properly good.



Mix it all together, gently, if you are not going to serve straight away, remember contact with air will turn the Avocadoes brown, to avoid this, do cover them tightly with foil.

The final ingredient is in short demand; you will need a wonderful Chilean woman to share the meal with.


Lasagna di Salmone

Last night we had some friends over for dinner; it was much-needed kick-start to revive our social life after it, had been flat lined due to our projects at work and studies.

Lasagne is a winner for two reasons. It takes a limited effort in the kitchen and both kids as well as adults love it.

I decided to make two version of it. One traditional based on meat and bacon (a twist I am going to blog about soon) and a one with salmon. It is a self-composed recipe “Lasagne con Salmone e Funghi”.

I went with with dry white wine. I went with the Pinot Grigio 2011. In hindsight, I should have gone for some more sparkling, like Maison Noelie Laborde Crémant de Bourgogne. I can recommend buying wine from Regis Baccaro
(@regbac), who never fails finding you the right wine to the right price.

Cesari pinot grigio 2011

 

Ingredients

For starters, I like to point out a fact best formulated by, as Thomas Kejser once said success with Lasagne equal amount of Béchamel added.

Because fish is a low-fat Ingredient, add a little cream to my béchamel. A spoon full of Dijon will complement the fish nicely as well.

Texture is another key; you want people being able to identify the ingredients, so slice your Salmon in nice long fat chunks approx. ½ cm thickness. When boiling your broccoli, leave it crunchy, cool it off in water and slice it in thick crunch slices. Clean and slice your funghi, and you are good to go.

Build your lasagne, interleaving with plates and ingredients. When adding the fish, give them a good squeeze of lemon.

Top off with mozzarella, parmesan, and its ready for the oven for (20min)

Elisabeth Ihlen “PØLSELAGING”


Jeg bestilte ferdig vaskede fåretarmer på spole fra England for wiener/grill (Home Pack Ready Spooled British Sheep Casings) http://www.weschenfelder.co.uk/catalog/807/natural_british_sheep_casings Merk! Fåretarm er mye skjørere enn svinetarm og tåler også mindre varme. Man kan nok bruke svinetarm, men pass på at det er riktig størrelse hvis det er grill/wiener størrelse du ønsker.
Et tips jeg fikk til å lage pølser: For at fett og kjøtt skal bindes godt sammen er det  viktig at alt utstyr man jobber med er skikkelig kaldt, så det kan være lurt å gjøre det i to omganger.
Dag 1:Jeg la alt av kverneutstyr i fryseren til det er iskaldt. Kjøttet og spekket tok jeg rett ut av kjøleskap. Så malte vi kjøtt og fett mens utstyr og kjøtt/fett fortsatt var kaldt. Jeg la pølsespoler i vann natten over. Jeg var usikker på hvor mye tarm som ville gå, men har lest meg til at hvis du har tarm igjen så kan dette fryses med litt vann med salt i, så det gjør jeg nå et forsøk på.
Dag 2: Tok kjøttet ut av kjøleskapet og begynte jobben. Her må man nesten være to for å kjøre raskt og effektivt. En som stapper kjøtt og en som tar imot pølsa i andre enden. Den personen som tar imot skal ikke dra, men bare støtte oppunder ettersom det stappes. Ha gjerne en skål med vann ved siden av, for det hjelper at tarmen som er på hylsteret er fuktig hele tiden.
Du kan jo selvfølgelig gjøre alt i en omgang, men faren er alt det mekaniske blir varmt og da binder som sagt ikke kjøtt og fett så bra. Når du har fått en pølselengde så stopper du og tvinner. Det er viktig at man tvinner annenhver gang frem og tilbake, slik at det du allerede har tvunnet ikke går opp.
Hvis man bruker fåretarm har jeg fått tips om at de bør trekkes før de eventuelt stekes/fryses. Dette fordi fåretarm ikke tåler så høy varme og derfor risikerer å ikke få det gjennomstekt.
Jeg har fått en veldig god oppskrift på pølsekraft som jeg brukte for å trekke pølsene:
http://www.evernote.com/shard/s145/sh/68102192-21f2-433d-9664-9350076b160f/46d3fbb1b6ca308aef6359248f94e8b6

Jeg forsøkte fire forskjellig oppskrifter som alle smakte fortreffelig (to av svin + to av lam): Diverse pølseoppskrifter:
1) Lammepølse: http://www.evernote.com/shard/s145/sh/dd4b6163-724b-49d9-b512-9d6eedfd92e0/40139f07b3021e703f7dcd90d80dbee9
2) Per-Otto og Ingunns greske lammepølser: http://www.dn.no/d2/d2mat/article2212987.ece
3) Kristofers Nürnberger Rostbratwürst: http://www.dn.no/d2/d2mat/article2212987.ece
4) Spicy svinepølser: http://www.matmeg.no/2011/01/polsemaker-polsemaker/ (Merk! Jeg benyttet 250 g spekk på ca 2 kg. kjøtt i stedet for bacon. Neste gang ville jeg bruke ennå mer. Den vanligste feilen folk gjør er å ha for lite fett/spekk i… I tillegg ville jeg hatt litt mindre salt i enn det som står i oppskriften)
Her et par andre linker til oppskrifter som jeg fikk tips om: http://www.evernote.com/shard/s145/sh/ff0300dd-6433-4279-a550-bd49d288266a/4da54940a0658bfca8e3b18a868a5c64 http://www.matinorden.no/ravarer/prisvinnende-polser/
Når du har laget pølsefarsen så er det godt tips å ta en liten skje og steke i pannne – da får du smakt på det og kan eventuelt justere salt/krydder før du lager pølsene.

Baguettes

Good bread is an ingredient in most dishes, here is my version of the French Baguette.

 

Ingredients for 3 Baguettes

450 gram of 00 flour or all-purpose flour

3 ½ dl warm water

1 ½ Teaspoon of dry yeast or a packet of yeast

1 Teaspoon of Sugar

2 Teaspoon of Salt

 

Steps

  • Mix the sugar, water and yeast in a small bowl and set aside, you’ll see it start react after about 5 minutes.


  • Pour flour, salt and yeast into your Artisan, and mix it on low speed for a good 6 to 7 minutes or until you have a smooth and somewhat wet and sticky looking dough.
  • Oil a large bowl with some olive oil and place the dough in the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and place it somewhere warm to rise for about an hour or until doubled in size.


  • Now we are ready for the somewhat messy part J, we need to pour the dough onto a really well floured surface, and knead, while turning flour into the dough. We don’t want a heavy dough, but we want it to pull it together into a ball.


  • Place the ball into an oiled bowl once more, cover and let it rise for another hour or until doubled in size.
  • Dump dough on a floured surface and cut into 3 equal pieces, roll each piece into a 12 inch rope and place them on a three piece baguette pan.


  • Cover with a towel and let them rise until doubled, about an hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 250c degrees, place a cast iron skillet on the bottom rack in the oven.
  • Place the baguettes in the upper part of the oven, quickly add boiling water to the pan and shut the oven door immediately, while it’s the steaming effect we are looking for.


  • Let them bake for about 30 minutes or until crispy and brown.


  • Allow them to cool a bit before serving.

Mayonnaise

I am not even going to argue that this is health, but its breadwinner in so many dishes… So here it goes. My favourite Mayonnaise is inspired by SpisemedPrice.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 decilitre Canola Oil.
  • 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • The juice of ½ lemon
  • Salt, Price says more than you think. My experience is that it easily goes too salty, which might be fine for dips for fried potatoes, but not suits food like Patatas Aioli
  • Freshly ground pepper

Method :

Price mention that temperature and speed is everything, its true, but I like to stress amount of oil added at a time is more important. Make sure your ingredients are roughly the same temperature. I dislike manual work, so when whisking, I tend to go for my kitchen aid, and not like price recommends “whisk by hand”. Mix all the ingredients together, except the oil. Then add a few drops of oil while your kitchen aid whisks constantly. When the oil combines with the eggs, then add a teaspoon of oil more, wait again until the oil and eggs combine. Repeat this procedure until you got a bigger portion, then start adding a bit more oil at a time. Stop when you got the thickness you find delicious.

The Mayonnaise can be flavoured in endless ways, my favourite is garlic, lime or chili. But don’t be shy, try any other herb to find your own favourites.

Patatas Aioli

Cooking awesome Spanish food doesn’t necessarily mean high expenses in form of exotic ingredients, the potato is much overlooked. My last post entries focused on pasta, and the family is grown tired with it, so in the next few posts I am going to focus my food ventures on potatoes, It allows for cooking while keeping an eye on the budget, without sacrificing flavor or variety

First dish is “Patatas Aioli” which is fried potatoes in a garlic mayonnaise. I am not going to explain how to make mayonnaise in this blog. You can use factory made mayonnaise instead, but it is a poor solution.

This recipe is for 2-3 people, make plenty, I promise you, these potatoes disappeared almost instantaneously, they’re that good.

  • 1 Pound small Potatoes I prefer red, but white potatoes will do.
  • Some Olive Oil, salt and Ground Black Pepper
  • 4 Cloves of Garlic very finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons of homemade Mayonnaise, “buy” mayonnaise might do, but it’s fake and not as good J
  • Lemon Juice and Dijon Mustard

Clean the uncooked the potatoes and Cut in half or quarters and pour them into a bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the 1 teaspoon of salt and ½ a teaspoon of pepper and mix it well. Preheat the oven to 220c, put your potatoes in a single layer on a piece of wax paper. Let the potatoes fry in the oven for 40 minutes, remember to flip them twice. When they are all nice golden brown you are ready for next step. Take the potatoes out of the oven and allow them to cool. Now for the dressing, in a bowl mix ½ teaspoon of salt, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the finely chopped garlic, 4 tablespoons of homemade mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and another tablespoon of Dijon mustard. Mix and pour over the cooled potatoes.

I like to dress the up with some freshly torn Parmigiano-Reggiano before serving.

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