Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Best Way To Freeze Ground Beef

Whenever I buy a large amount of ground beef
on sale at Fresh Market or Costco/Sams I divide
it up when I get home into 1 pound portions.
That's usually the amount I use for most recipes.
I use a small scale to weigh out 1 lb portions.
 I weight them right in quart size freezer bags.
Then I smosh the hamburger flat with my
fingers. This also pushes out the air.
Keep the hamburger away from the zip closure.
I fold that part over until done to keep it
clean. Then zip shut.
The key is to freeze it flat. Why you ask?
Because it takes up much less room in the
 freezer, and thaws quickly!
I try to freeze everything flat and just
stack them up. It thaws in  no time
this way. Even faster if you put it in a
 bowl of cold water; less than 30  minutes.
Of course while I'm at it I also like to
press a stack of hamburger patties. Those
are so handy to have on hand for a quick dinner. 
 I use my Tupperware hamburger press.
 I also date my 1lb bags and keep a
 running list of meals that are in the freezer
 in my notes app. on my iphone. It helps me keep
track of the freezer inventory and the month
it was added. It's so easy to add to the list
and delete what I've used. Big help. 

Both methods save time and save space
in my freezer.
Hope it works for you too. Now cook the
best ground beef by checking out
my previous post.
The Best Way To Cook Ground Beef


Sunday, September 27, 2015

Avocado, Cucumber, Tomato Salad

A  nice healthy, fresh salad for lunch using up 
things I had in my produce bowl.
The fresh cilantro and lemon juice really give
 it a big boost of flavor. 

Avocado, Cucumber,Tomato Salad
1 avocado, scooped and sliced
1/4 red onion, thin slices
1/2 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1/2 zucchini, peeled if desired and chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
2 T fresh chopped cilantro
1/2 lemon, juiced, 1-2T
2 T olive oil
1/2 t salt
1/8 t pepper
Toss together, serves 2


Links: Between Naps On the Porch,

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Best Way To Cook Ground Beef

To bring out the best flavor of ground beef 
you need to treat it like a steak and Sear It!
This method will forever change the way you
cook hamburger for sauces and chili. 
Season one side of the flattened beef and put
that side into a hot, lightly oiled skillet. Leave it
 without breaking it up until it develops a nicely
 browned bottom (about 3 minutes). Season the
top side and flip it with a large spatula. Now
let that side brown. Drain off any excess fat.
You should already be smelling a familiar
grilled steak aroma. Better, yes? 
Now start breaking it up with the spatula
and continue to brown the meat all over as
 you normally do. Add the garlic or onions or
whatever your recipe calls for. 
Continue making your sauce, chili....and


Monday, September 21, 2015

Steak with Dijon Cream Pan Sauce

When I am grilling steaks in my (favorite) cast iron
 pan on the stovetop it's an opportunity to make
 a delicious pan sauce. Those wonderful browned 
bits and juices do not go to waste. They are 
used to make a simple pan sauce that adds 
great flavor to the steaks. 
I used a little
wine, cream, dijon, and tarragon.
 Sear the steaks without moving on the
first side for 3-4 minutes. Flip and cook
another 3-4 minutes.
Remove the steaks to a platter and
cover with foil to keep warm while you
make the pan sauce.
 I deglaze the pan with a little wine, stirring
to scrape up all the browned bits in the pan
for about 30 seconds.
Next I add a little cream, a dollop of Dijon,
salt, pepper and tarragon. It's a flavorful
combination that reminds me of my
favorite Bearnaise Sauce. It just takes a
few minutes to make.
 Whisk until smooth and thickened
for about 2-3 minutes.
 Spoon over the steaks.
 I made all four so we had leftover steak. We
sliced them for sandwiches at lunch the next day.
Good planning! 
 You can also use filet mignon or rib eye.
I think this sauce would be good with
pan grilled pork chops too.
 Cooked the way we like them; medium rare.
Make sure to swirl each piece in this
yummy good! 

Steak with Dijon Cream Pan Sauce
1-1/2 lbs sirloin steak, 
 garlic salt, pepper
Olive oil
1/2 C white wine
1/4 C cream
1t Dijon mustard
1 t dried tarragon 
Pat dry the steaks and cut into 4 pieces. 
Rub with olive oil and sprinkle generously with
your choice of seasonings; garlic salt and pepper
 is fine. Heat a heavy skillet on medium high and
 add about 1 T of olive oil to coat the bottom of
the pan. Cook the steaks to desired doneness,
3-4 minutes for medium-rare. Do not move the
steaks until it's time to turn. This creates the sear
 and browns the outside. Check for color before
 turning, then flip and cook another 3-4 minutes.
 Remove to a platter, cover with foil to keep warm
 while you make the sauce.
 Add the wine to the pan and cook scraping up the 
browned bits for 30 seconds. Add the cream and
 the mustard and simmer for 1-2 minutes. Season
with salt and pepper, then stir in the tarragon. 
Spoon over the steaks.
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Thursday, September 17, 2015

I Love Salmon!

It's so good, so healthy, and so easy to make. 
A nice dinner when you are short on time
and too pooped to fuss. 
So easy anyone can make it.
This is my kind of fast-food dinner. 
Season and roast it in a high temp oven. 
It just takes 10-12 minutes in a 475º
oven and it will be perfect.
Rinse and pat dry, drizzle with olive oil, rub 
in some seasonings, some lemon zest and 
lemon juice and in the oven it goes. 
You can choose the seasonings, for this one
I used cajun seasoning mix. 
When done add chopped fresh parsley and
a good squeeze of lemon. That's what takes
it to the yummmmm! level. 
The veggies will be done in the time it 
takes the salmon to cook. 

Oven Roasted Salmon
Salmon filet
2 Tolive oil
2 T cajun seasonings
1 lemon, zest and juice
1/4 C fresh chopped parsley
Rinse and pat dry salmon.
Coat both sides with olive oil and then
rub in seasonings. Sprinkle top with lemon
juice and zest. Roast @475º for 10-12 min,
Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and
 more lemon juice. 


Links: Facebook, Rattlebridge Farm,

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Easy Savory Brisket

This is a tired-and-true beef brisket recipe
 that has a savory au jus-like brown gravy.
It's fork tender.
Very simple to make with a few basic ingredients.
There's really nothing to this easy recipe.
Just pour the mixture over the brisket.
Put in a shallow casserole just big enough
to hold the brisket and 1 C liquid.
 Cover tightly with foil. I also add the lid to
keep the foil secure.
 When done remove the brisket to a platter.
 Scrape off the extra fat layer on top.
Now make the gravy. Shake the cornstarch 
and water in a jar and add to the drippings. 
Bring to boil for one minute while whisking.
Slice the brisket and spoon on some gravy.
Pour the rest of the gravy into a gravy boat.
Good with potato pancakes, mashed
potatoes or my Cheesy Potato Casserole

1 beef brisket, about 3-4lbs
3/4 C water
1/4 C soy sauce
1/2 t celery salt
1/2 t onion salt
1/2 t garlic powder
1/2 t black pepper
Place brisket in a shallow casserole.
Combine remaining ingredients and 
pour over brisket. Cover tightly with
foil and put on a lid (if you have one).
Bake 250º for 5 hours or 325º 3 hours,
Combine 2 T cornstarch and
1 C cold water in a jar.
Shake well. Remove the brisket
from the casserole. Add the 
mixture and bring to a boil for
one minute, stirring to thicken.
Slice the brisket and spoon on
some gravy. Pour the remaining gravy
into a gravy boat to pass at the table.


Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Pin Away!

My pinning problem has been solved! Yeah!!
 Thank you all for alerting me to the problem
of not being allowed to pin from my blog.
That's no fun. Click Pinterest

 Pin Away!!