The cook gene skips me, but the nutty competitor beast inside sets out to conquer the demon since last year. I am still a horrible cook by the definition nothing comes with any ease, nor flow. It is always very nerve-wrecking. I find working with a bunch of high-strung neurosurgeons easier.
So, first ambitious challenge in 2014 I attempt is to make a Vday dinner all by myself with recipes I have tried out, slightly hacked for a lazy dummie me, and everything turns out decent. Surprise! I am turning this into a cooking diary for the day of miracle of no booboos in my kitchen. Or I am alive, food is edible and yes, nothing is burnt.
Leek soup + Crab cake salad
Kale chips +Ribeye + Crispy potatoes + Rice pilaf + Pan roasted veg
I made the Leek Soup the day before.
Leek Soup (8 bowls):
Roughly chop up 3 bags/pounds of frozen pre-washed leek , 1 onion, 1 carrot, 2 stalks celery, sweat on stove in inner pot of a thermal vacuum thing with 1 tbsp of butter and 1 tbsp of coconut oil, 1 tsp of salt and 1 tsp of pepper.
While it is cooking, chop a knuckle size potato, throw it in, cook a few minutes
Add 1 cup of white wine (when the recipe says 1/2) and 6 cups of no sodium vegetable stock. I should put in bay leaf but I never have it in pantry. I then put a few dashes of fish sauce (I KNOW! haha) On medhigh heat, bring it to a boil, put pot in that thermal vacuum casing.
I then go watch 2 ends of curling, ~10 min. Back making roux in another fry pan: 2 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp coconut oil, 1/4 C AP flour a few minute in med heat till golden and bubbly, pour in a few ladles of soup liquid, mix till homogenous and thick, pour the mixture back to stock pot. Buzz it with a stick blender on stove on med heat, then let it sit some more still simmering hot in that thermal vacuum thing for another ~15 min of curling.
I let it sit on counter till room temp, stick the whole pot in the fridge and it’s ready for tonight.
Salted the ~2 inch thick 1 lb steak overnight liberally for a dry brine.
This is what I did today after work:
5pm Open the champagne and wines!!
Rice pilaf is just long grain rice, quinoa, veg stock in rice cooker.
Make the crab cakes:
lightly toss: 5 ounce crab meat + 1/2 C panko breadcrumbs + 2 sprigs chopped green onions + 1 tbsp chopped cilantro + a bit of lime zest + 1 tsp of lime juice + a few dashes of fish sauce and tobascco. Mix in eggwhite to bind. I then make it into 2 heart shape lumps and a sprinkle of paprika for pretty haha. Set aside in fridge.
5:15pm set oven to 275F roasting for Kale chips
This is hands down the easiest thing to make that is so yummy and good for me. Toss half a bag of prewashed baby kale leaves in olive oil and salt, lay it an even layer on baking sheet and bake 15 min toss and another 10min! No more potato chips ever.
5:45pm oven to 400F.
Potatoes lightly tossed in peanut oil, salt and pepper rosemary, bake for 15 min.
6:05pm oven to 190F. Bake steak ~35 min, internal temp 120F (for med rare). Set aside, tented, resting while oven is cranked up to 500F broil. broil steak 1 min each side.
Salad is butter lettuce, tomatoes and pecan with leftover vegan avocado dressing I have from a few days ago (1 avocado, 2 tbsp lime juice, 1/2tsp maple syrup, a few dashes of Worcester sauce, pepper, salt)
6:40pm Pan-fry crab cake while steak is resting in 1 tsp coconut oil , 3 min each side med heat. My lazy sauce is 1 tsp Sriracha+ 2 tsp Kewpie mayo+ 1 tsp lime juice. At the same time roast veg + crisp up potatoes in oven 400F after pulling steak out in same steak cast iron pan for 10 min.
Dinner at 7pm.
Seriously if I can do it, you can train your pet chimp to.
Hubs made a dozen mini pecan chocochip banana bread muffins that dirties a ziploc bag, a teaspoon and 2 measuring cups. He tweaked recipe by halving the amount of oil and using coconut oil in liquid form instead, and half the sugar but added bittersweet chocochips. I swear these are the last two I am munching tonight.