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Tonight was a shift from the usual pattern. Both step-sons were away, which left me and SWMBO. She wanted steaks, and it was a perfect chance to put together a dinner for two. Ribeye steaks with KJ steak seasoning and Garlic Butter cooked low and indirect, then seared over direct coals (with the ceramic deflector removed) on the #KamadoJoe Junior. Joined with a fresh garden salad with eggs, tomato, cucumber, radishes, carrots and Blue Cheese dressing. The small size of the grill (14 inches) made it launch up to temperature quickly for the low and slow phase of the cook. After the steaks hit 115 internal temperature, it was a snap to put on some gloves, lift the main grate away with the steaks still on it. The ceramic diffuser was pulled, changing the fire to direct heat over the coals. The dampers were opened slightly, to get the temperature up to searing temperature. The steaks then got their one and only flip, and a pat of garlic butter was added for the searing step. The steaks came out tender and juicy, and SWMBO was very pleased with the evening meal. It is good to see the Junior score high marks from the most important critic of all.
Time, it is always a challenge on weekday cooks. By the time I get home, everyone is already hungry; they aren't in the mood to wait a couple of hours for a meal. Certainly burgers and dogs can be whipped up quickly, but for anything more imaginative, a bit more preparation is required. This dish has the advantage of being prepped in advance, and can be stored for weeks before final sear and serving. The technique is called Sous Vide. It involves vacuum sealing bags with the uncooked meatloaf inside. Then the bags are put into a circulating bath of water at 160 degrees for an hour. At this point, the meat has reached an internal temperature of 160, and is well-done. The inside of the package is pasteurized by the heat, and is safe for extended storage in the refrigerator. When the family wants a meal with near zero prep time, start your Kamado up for searing. Open a few packages, and throw them on the grill for a quick sear. Because the meat is already fully cooked, you are just shooting for the color and amount of sear you want the Meatloaf burgers to have. A note on the pictures, I also made classical meatloaf on the Big Joe, the Joe Junior was used for searing the patty (pictured). The recipe for the meatloaf can be found in my "meatloaf again" posting a few weeks back.