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  1. When I was first looking into getting a Kamado, the guy at BBQ's Galore shop was listing off all the things that a Kamado could do, and the final thing he mentioned was Tandoor. SOLD! Ever since then, I've been wanting to make this dish, and the July challenge was the perfect opportunity. Tandoori Chicken The smell of this marinade was incredible. I will definitely be making this again on a regular basis. Absolutely delicious! I don't know what else I'm going to use that massive bag of chilli powder for!! 1 kg skinless, boneless chicken thighs 1/2 cup plain yoghurt juice of one lime 1 tablespoon garam Masala 1/2 tablespoon ginger powder 1/2 tablespoon kashmiri chilli powder 1/2 tablespoon methi (fenugreek leaves) 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 4 cloves garlic, minced grated fresh ginger, approx 1/2 Tablespoon once grated 1/2 Tablespoon salt 1/4 teaspoon red food colouring (optional) - you will notice in the photo of the ingredients, that I bought a packet of this but decided against using it. When I looked up what food colour 124 was and found out that it's made from synthetic coal tar , I chose to leave it out. Therein is the beauty of making things from scratch - you have the power to choose what goes in and what doesn't. Basically, i mixed together all the marinade ingredients, and cut some deep slashes in the thighs so that the marinade could penetrate the chicken, mixed together and refrigerated for a few hours. by the time the marinading was done, it was pretty dark outside. I fired her up and the smell emanating from this chicken is something everyone should experience coming from their Kamado at some point in their lives. The perfect accompaniment for the chicken is a cucumber and herb yoghurt sauce. Raita 1 cup plain yoghurt 1 lebanese cucumber peeled, de-seeded and finely chopped 1 clove of garlic minced juice of half a lime a big bunch of mint and coriander finely chopped small grating of fresh ginger for a bit of warmth salt to taste this is a pic of the amount of herbs that went in to this tasty sauce. This was the first time ever that my husband and I ate a whole kg of chicken in one sitting! LOL ... he said "i just can.not stop eating this". ha haaa The next time I make this, I will take it to the next level by making my own garam masala spice blend. I can't wait because I'm sure it will be mind-blowing. Garam Masala Spice Blend recipe by Vijaya Selvaraju 2 tablespoons cumin seeds 2 tablespoons coriander seeds 2 teaspoons black pepper corns 1 star anise 1/4 of a whole nutmeg 10 green cardamon pods 1 stick cinnamon don't toast the spices. Just whiz them up in a spice grinder and store in fridge or freezer. The money shot was supposed to include slices of cucumber but I couldn't control myself and started eating this before setting it up properly. ha haaa!!
  2. This is one of my favourite salads that really delivers far more voomph than the list of ingredients would suggest. I bought a sous vide machine about a year ago and have only used it twice, always thinking that I would love to do some eye fillets (inspired by @AntinOz, and figured that this was as good a time as any to pull the box out from the bottom of the cupboard. After biting into that beef which was as soft as butter, the Anova is going to be stored in a more accessible spot going forward. Easy Thai Beef Salad Ingredients 2 x 250g eye fillet steaks or similar Oil for cooking steak 150g of mixed lettuce leaves 1 telegraph cucumber 1 carrot sliced into thin strips ½ to 1 red capsicum sliced into thin strips 1 red onion sliced thinly (I omitted due to raw onion allergy) Salt and pepper 1 bunch coriander leaves, picked 1 bunch mint leaves, torn if large Toasted sesame seeds Salad Dressing Ingredients 1 teaspoon peanut oil (I subbed with grapeseed oil because it’s a no flavour oil that I had in the cupboard) 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce 2 teaspoons fish sauce Method I started off with seasoning my beautiful steaks with salt and pepper and then vacuum sealing them. I left them on the counter to come to room temp whilst I got the water up to 54 degrees C / 130 F. They were in the water bath for two hours and when I removed them, I patted them dry using paper towels, which ensures a crust can form. I heated up the Kamado to 220 degrees C / 430F with the coals banked to the left and the grate in the lower position. I then put a cast iron fry pan on there to heat up with the lid down. Whilst I was doing all this, I prepared my veggies and dressing. Once the pan was hot, I put in a tablespoon or so of oil, swirled it around and cooked the steaks, about 30 seconds on each side. The steaks then camped out in a foil tent for about 10 mins. Holy moly! Slicing through those buttery steaks was a revelation!! So juicy ... and all evenly dispersed within the meat!! To assemble the salad, I just layered the lettuce, herbs, topped with the veggies, placed the slices of steak on top, drizzled on the dressing and sprinkled with the sesame seeds. I made extra salad and doubled the dressing, which hubby and I took to work for lunch today causing lunchbox envy in the workplace. LOL. Not sure if the entry counts given the steaks were only finished on the Kamado but I’m cool with it either way because it’s an easy and tasty recipe that I hope you try.
  3. Hello everyone, here is my effort to challenge myself by deboning a chicken - using the technique of the master, Mister Jacques Pepin! I could watch that video over and over again and would never bore of it. I can't say that I did it in the two meenoots that he can do it in LOL ... and I must admit that I had a piece of cling-wrap over the screen of my ipad so that I could keep pausing it at each step and rewinding regularly. ha haaa!! In addition, I couldn't decide on which sauce I wanted to make, so I made two - gravy using the carcass and bones from said chicken along with other ingredients and also a Romesco sauce made from capsicums I roasted in the Kamado too. Stuffed chicken Galantine Free-range whole chicken Spanish serrano ham Spinach - wilted Garlic - a few cloves Mushrooms - sauteed (I added these once I saw how piddly amount of stuffing I had once the big bag of spinach wilted down to a very small quantity) Young Asiago cheese Salt and pepper olive oil to rub on skin prior to roasting Basically, I used the Jacques Pepin method to de-bone the chicken and only messed up one foot because me being me, I took the whole de-boning thing too far and removed that bone but it was all good. This is what it looked like sans-carcass. With the tasty stuffing. Trussed and ready to cook (not as elegant as Jacques - but not bad for a first timer, if I must say so myself ) Romesco Sauce 4 red capsicums - fire roasted 6 sun dried tomato halves 2/3 cup almonds big bunch of parsley from the garden 4 garlic cloves 6 Tablespoons olive oil 2 teaspoons pomegranate molasses (or sherry vinegar if you have it - I didn't so also added an extra teaspoon of red wine vinegar) 2 teaspoons pimenton/smoked paprika b Basically, I roasted and cleaned up the capsicums the day before, then cooked off the garlic and nuts in the olive oil until the garlic just started to very lightly colour (to take out the harshness) and then popped all the ingredients, including the oil into the food processor until still slightly chunky. Refrigerated overnight for the flavours to meld. Gravy carcass and bones from my de-boned chicken 1 kg chicken wings 4 x strips streaky bacon (I had forgotten to take it out of the fridge prior to taking this photo) 3 x ribs celery 2 x carrots 2 x onions 2 or 3 rosemary sticks a couple of bay leaves a couple of star anise some bunches of tarragon a few whole pepper corns 1.5 litre chicken stock flour and butter to make a roux - I just wing this so can't say the quantities sorry. I roasted all ingredients listed up to and including rosemary in the oven until well cooked and deep in colour / flavour. Transferred to a big pot and then deglazed the oven tray of all the delicious bits stuck to the bottom and then poured that into the pot, along with the bay leaves, tarragon and star anise. Simmered on low for a couple of hours and gave everything a good moosh (culinary technical term ) with the wooden spoon every now and then to extract maximum flavour. Strained and cooled in the fridge for a while. I then scooped off a lot of the chicken fat before adding to the roux to make a very flavoursome and delicious gravy. My friend and neighbours took their own money shots on their phones when I was plating. They've never had a deboned chicken before and were very impressed when i was "carving" what appeared to them to be a whole chicken.
  4. Scampi (Langoustines) in White Wine and Tomato Sauce with Pita Bread a.k.a Skampi na Buzaru if you're on the Adriatic Coast of Croatia If these sweet and tender little morsels of loveliness from the sea were as sustainable, prolific and cheap as they are on the West Coast of Scotland, I'd be eating these guys at least twice a week!! We are lucky enough here in Australia that they also live in Western Australian waters, so I was able to get my little hands on some Aussie ones through my local fish monger. I'm a little bit jealous that @KamadoJosephine can probably take a leisurely stroll down to the local fish market and pick them up as catch of the day fresh off the boat . If you travelled to the Adriatic coast of Croatia and didn't stumble upon this dish in it's various forms with either scampi, octopus, mussels etc., you'd have to have been hiding in a box to not have come across it.... but I have to say that these little scampi are next level! They are also known as Norway Lobster or even Dublin Bay prawn. You could make this with shrimp or any other seafood... the last time I made this, I served the leftover sauce with pan-fried fish fillets and my husband really raved on about how good it was... however it is all the ingredients, including the scampi heads that really make this sauce. It would be a crime to serve the sauce without something to mop it up, so I made some fluffy / chewy pita bread to serve with it. I started with getting the Pita Bread doing it's thing: 1. Put the milk and hot water in a jug and leave for 10 mins (which should be enough to get it to room temp) 2. add the sugar and yeast and mix to combine 3. leave until it gets frothy (around 5-10 mins) 4. put the flour, salt and thyme in a bowl 5. once the liquid mixture is frothy, add it to dry ingredients and mix through using your fingers 6. transfer to lightly floured surface and knead for approx 5 mins until nice and smooth 7. transfer to lightly oiled bowl and cover with clean tea towel and leave for about an hour, until doubled in size 8. when you're ready, cut into six pieces 9. oil your work surface with some olive oil and roll each one out as the prior one cooks in a heavy based fry pan with a bit of oil on it, for a couple of minutes each side 10. as they're cooked, I placed them in a cozy clean tea towel to keep them warm White Wine, Seafood Sugo A few of the heads from the smallest Scampi small brown onion, finely diced 4 smallish or two large garlic cloves finely chopped 1 can san Marzano tomatoes (pureed) 1 cup white wine (I used a nice Chardonnay from Western Australia to go with the WA scampi) fresh parsley, finely chopped olive oil salt and pepper some day old breadcrumbs ( a couple of tablespoons if necessary) 1. drizzle a bit of olive oil on the scampi heads and place in a medium oven to roast and enhance their flavour 2. place some olive oil in a heavy based pan and cook off the onion until nicely translucent 3. add the garlic and cook off until fragrant but not coloured 4. place the roasted heads in the pan and add the white wine 5. cook off the smell of the wine for a couple of minutes 6. add the tomatoes 7. simmer for 5 mins or so, until you can see the sauce is now cohesive ie. foamy bubbles from the tomato have disappeared 8. if it's too runny, you can add the breadcrumbs to thicken 9. if it becomes too thick, you can add some water to loosen it up. Scampi I kg scampi 1 lemon rind juice 1/4 lemon 1/4 cup olive oil In Croatia, they would have cooked these whole in the sauce but that wouldn't have allowed me to get the kamado involved! Basically, I cut them down the length of their bodies, to get two nice flat sides for placing on the kamado I brushed them with the olive oil/lemon mixture and cooked them on a 220C/450F kamado for really only a couple of mins per side. They're so delicate that I was very afraid of overcooking them!! I nestled the cooked scampi in the sauce, sprinkled with the parsley and served with pita bread and a glass each of lovely Chardonnay wine of the side. Hubby and I enjoyed sharing this meal straight from the serving dish.
  5. Even with the phenomenal amount of lead time, I didn't think I was going to get an entry in this month due to many factors, not withstanding the fact that I kept changing my mind about what I would do could achieve. LOL We have a very dear friend coming to visit this weekend, so I used it as an opportunity to make some things on the Kamado that I had only previously made indoors and on the Weber Baby Q. These are hand-on-heart some of my absolute favourite recipes and I'm really excited to share them with you guys and I really, really hope that you try some of them. ESPECIALLY the pork skewers and satay sauce!! They are amazing! Infinitely better on the Kamado (as you guys would already know!) LOL ... and the lemongrass curry... it's such a flavour bomb ... and the fishcakes aren't too shabby either LOL . Seriously though - they're very authentic in flavour and texture. My intent was to challenge myself by making dessert in the Kamado and I thought that a brownie would lend itself beautifully. I have to admit that I ended up doing it in the oven for the sake of timeliness. The Kamado was well-busy pumping out a curry, grilled chicken and pork skewers! Maybe I can convince hubby that we need a Junior? ha haaa! The recipes are too authentic to be my own because I'm not Thai but they are truly delicious and from some of my favourite food bloggers and cooking channels, so I will let you know who from and maybe they'll become yours too? Prep commenced last night ... so here goes. Lydia’s Little Thai Banquet Menu Pork Skewers with Satay Sauce (by Pailin's Hot Thai Kitchen - YouTube) Fish Cakes with Dipping Sauce (by Pailin's Hot Thai Kitchen - YouTube) Coconut Rice (by Recipe Tin Eats - Recipe blogger) Lemongrass Chicken Curry (by Not Quite Nigella - Food and Travel blogger - with some adaptations by me). I have to mention that the idea of making the curry on the Kamado was inspired by Glenn's Aussie BBQ cooking channel on YouTube. The guy is a real character with some great recipes and techniques. Jaffa Brownie (Gemma's Bigger Bolder Baking - with adaptations by me) Pork Satay Skewers 450g pork loin steaks Marinade/brine (min 2 hours but preferably overnight) 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seed (lightly toasted) 1/2 teaspoon cumin 1 Tablespoon lemongrass finely chopped (just the inside, remove the hard outer) 1 teaspoon chopped galangal 1/2 teaspoon turmeric (fresh or dried) 1/8 teaspoon white pepper 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon 1/8 teaspoon cloves 2 teaspoons brown sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/3 cup coconut milk 1/2 Tablespoon vinegar 1/4 cup water Extra coconut milk for brushing when cooking Pound the lemongrass and galangal into as smooth a paste as you can using a mortar and pestle Add the toasted coriander seeds and grind Add remaining dry ingredients and grind Add wet ingredients and mix through With the steaks, cut them down the centre along the length of the steak and then slice into 1/4 inch / 6 cm pieces Marinade overnight if possible Next morning Soak your skewers (if bamboo) in water for a couple of hours Skewer 3 pieces onto each stick and try to get one piece with the fat strip on it, per skewer I bbq’d these direct on the kamado with all the coals pushed to one side and the cast iron grate in the lower position. Baste one side with plain coconut milk and placed basted side down on the grate and then baste the other side that is facing up. Peanut Sauce (also amaaaazing just served with veggies) I implore you to try making this!!! 1/2 cup roasted peanuts ground up rough in the food processor 2 Tablespoons lightly toasted white sesame seeds 1/4 cup coconut milk Plus 1 cup coconut milk 1/3 cup curry paste (either red or Penang) 2 Tablespoons brown sugar 2 to 3 Tablespoons tamarind juice (I soaked a 1/16th block of the package pictured in a small bowl of boiling water for 15 mins and then mushed it up using my fingers until there was nothing left to squeeze out and then strained out the solids to end up with the liquid). a splash or so of Fish sauce to taste Put 1/4 cup coconut milk into a small pot and reduce by half Add curry paste and cook, stirring until it's thickened and the red oil starts to separate (about 5 mins) Add the other cup of coconut milk and peanuts and sesame and stir until well combined Add sugar and tamarind juice Add a couple of splashes of fish sauce Simmer and keep stirring until thickened. Keep stirring, otherwise it will catch Taste and check whether extra sugar or fish sauce is needed for balance Mine sat for a while whilst I did all the other stuff so it was quite thick when I went to serve it, so just add some water and heat it up and it will be perfect Fish Cakes and Thai dipping sauce Dipping sauce 1 big red chilli (mild for flavour) 1 - 2 small Thai chills (spicy for heat) 3 cloves garlic 3 Tablespoons water 1/3 cup vinegar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup sugar To serve: 1 tablespoon finely chopped cucumber 1 tablespoon ground roasted peanuts 1 tablespoon finely chopped purple shallot (I left this out because of an allergy) Blitz first 7 ingredients in blender Heat on stove, stirring until thickened (3 to 5 mins) Allow to cool Just prior to serving, add cucumber, peanuts and shallots (and a bit of water to loosen up if needed) Fish cakes 350g tender white fish (must be very cold from fridge) 2 to 3 Tablespoons red curry paste 1 egg yolk 1 teaspoon sugar 1 teaspoon fish sauce 1/2 cup green beans chopped into small bits 1/3 cup Thai basil (spicy) 4 -5 kaffir lime leaves finely shredded (I substitute with lemon myrtle leaves because I have a tree) Blend up very cold fish and curry paste, egg yolk and sugar in blender until well combined and mixture is bouncy (doesn't take long at all) Transfer to a bowl and combine remaining ingredients with a spatula Using wet hands and tablespoon, form into small patties and then shallow fry in something like rice bran or peanut oil. If you have dry hands, you will end up with a sticky mess and wasted ingredients). Pan fry until golden brown. Coconut rice The secret is using coconut powder (not coconut milk!) and kaffir lime (or lemon myrtle) leaves. Coconut powder makes the rice light and fluffy without the residual gunk on the surface you get from using coconut milk, and the kaffir lime leaves is the secret ingredient that gives this rice that special aroma. 1 cup jasmine rice (or long grain) 1 1/2 cups water 1 packet coconut milk powder (1.75 oz / 50 g) 2 large or 3 small kaffir lime leaves , crumpled in your hand (I used lemon myrtle from my tree) 1/2 tsp salt 3/4 tsp sugar 1 tbsp desiccated coconut , toasted, to garnish (optional) - I just topped with a little finely shredded lemon myrtle leaf that I had set aside for the job 1. Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over high heat. 2. Place lid on (clear glass lid is good if you don't have x-ray vision) 3. When it comes to the boil, (watch it, you don’t want it to boil over), turn the heat down to low so it is simmering gently 4. Leave to simmer for 12 to 15 mins or until all the liquid has been absorbed 5. Remove from the heat and rest for 5 to 10 mins 6. Fluff with a form and garnish with toasted coconut or extra shredded lime leaf, if using and then serve Lemongrass Chicken Curry 500g chicken thigh (which I pounded slightly to even out thickness) prior to grilling on cast iron grate in lower position at 200C 2 sticks lemongrass Coconut or peanut oil for frying 1 onion, peeled and chopped fairly small dice (or four purple shallots as shown above) 2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced 1 inch ginger, sliced 4cm stick of turmeric, peeled and chopped into small bits 1 - 2 small chillies - sliced 2 tomatoes - chopped (I forgot to include them in the photo) 2 tablespoons fish sauce 1.5 teaspoons sugar 1 cup water 1/2 cup coconut milk (optional) I added some tofu puffs which are amazing flavour explosions because they're like curry-sauce-absorbing-sponges, as well as some baby corn and snow peas . Split the lemongrass sticks in half horizontally and bash the cut side with the blunt end of a knife. Place the onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric and chilli in a mortar and pestle or a food processor and bash or process away. I set up the kamado with half coals on one side to create direct and indirect zones and then placed the wire grates in the top position I added coconut oil to a cast iron low skillet with a lid and fried the paste mixture until fragrant and then added the corn Add the lemongrass and tomatoes. Then add the fish sauce, water and sugar. Simmer for 20-30 minutes covered. Add snow peas and and tofu 5-10 mins before serving Set aside Cook off the chicken thighs in lower position as described above and then chop and add to the curry. Jaffa brownie Jaffa Brownie My grand plan was to make this on the Kamado but I was creating a rod for my own back, so that didn't happen. I’m definitely not going to tell you American peeps how to make a brownie because I’m sure you all have handed-down family recipes far superior to mine, but my twist is to add the microplaned rind of an orange to really lift the flavour. Choc orange is one of my favourite dessert flavour combos. I would really love if you would try some of these recipes and let me know if you do and what you think of them. Bon Apetit.
  6. I’m cutting it close getting this month’s challenge entry posted. It’s been a crazy busy month, between work, home projects, weekend guests, weekend road trips and getting both girls settled in at college (more road trips), it’s been tough to get this one done. I’ve actually had this one planned shortly after it was announced, and cooked it this past weekend. Homemade Italian Sausage Sub Homemade Hot Italian sausage Homemade Mozzarella cheese ( I did add some store bought sharp provolone to the final dish) Homemade Sub rolls. Homemade Marinara sauce (ok, I did use store bought canned tomatoes, oh my…) It was a fun tasty cook, and I was able to use 3 kamados in the process. have about 5 pounds of sausage sealed away in the freezer. I'm thinking about an Italian sausage gravy biscuit cook this weekend…. Enjoy a few pics… Sausage Prep Bread/Sub prep Marinara prep Yum Yum... homemade cheese... Bring it all together....
  7. Alright - since the end of the month will be here before we know it, I decided I better get my challenge cook knocked out. Also, figured it was a good excuse to put my new veggie slayer through it's paces. Since salad is traditionally not something we think of when grilling, I wanted to utilize my kamado for as much of the cook as possible. I was sick most of last week, and it was good to be feeling human again. The weather wasn't looking good for the weekend, so I opted for the gail force wind Saturday cook instead of the blizzard Sunday cook. It was blowing 35 steady and probably gusting 50+... good times. Started off with getting my chicken seasoned up. Some Trader Joe's Everyday Seasoning and avocado oil and threw it in the fridge. Added some lemon a bit later. Then on to the salad dressing. I made a bleu cheese dressing. Trying to keep in the salad state of mind, I used non-fat greek yogurt and reduced fat bleu cheese. Figured some diced green chiles wouldn't hurt either - so threw in half a can after chopping them up a bit more. Then on to the croutons. Again, keeping things light, I used a light multigrain bread and just a spritz of oil. I also wanted smaller than usual croutons to match the chopped salad better - trying to keep everything pretty uniform in size. At this point I had Akorn Jr. setup for indirect - although I had to relight because the charcoal didn't take the first time. I didn't leave the dome open at all for the start up since it would have just blown itself out. Next up was some bacon. I have found that turkey bacon really isn't half bad, (I actually really like it), so I went with that to be a little bit lower fat than regular bacon. My husband was not impressed with me.... Decided to make cheddar biscuits to go with the salad. Realized I had half a can of green chiles left and threw them in. Cooked the first batch in the cast iron pan the bacon came out of and the 2nd batch on a cast iron griddle plate. 2nd batch looked better, I think the sides of the skillet prevented proper browning. Then I put my chicken on to finish off my cooking for the night. At this point I had realized it was going to be too late and sent the family to grab some dinner. Cooked it indirect since that was how my grill was setup and I wasn't going to mess around with it in the wind. Cubed up the chicken this morning. Chopped up my veggies - putting a new knife to work to make sure I like it before I send it off to @Ben S for a new custom handle. I was just going to send it his way, but he talked me into using it for a few weeks first to see how I felt about it - which was great advice.... Put it all together and included a chopped up hard boiled egg that is not pictured. I used chilled cast iron for the salad and dressing and heated for the biscuits - keeping the cold things cold and the hot things hot. Dressed and plated: Had a great time with this challenge! And my husband said it was probably the best salad I've ever made.... so that was a bonus.
  8. July has been busy, and time has gotten away. and I’ve been running out of time for the July Challenge, so my post is getting done almost at the 11th hour. After seeing a short segment of Carnival Eats on the Food Network, I found a little inspiration for Sunday’s cook. Not my best work at capturing the cook, and it was still a tasty meals. Beef Fusion rolls – 3 ways. Philly cheese steak spring rolls topped w/ sriracha ranch bacon sauce Beef fajita spring rolls topped with grilled onion-tomato-cilantro salsa Thai Beef Basil spring rolls (ok not really fusion, but it was good away) No real recipe, just a “wing it” kind of meal. The Philly roll and fajita roll were also quickly fried; the Thai beef basil was not.
  9. A simple meal, but a favorite for my wife and I, Alaskan salmon on a cedar plank. I'll grill some salmon 3 or 4 times a month. I've used many different seasonings to change it up, steak seasoning, cajun, teriyaki, Rub with Love. Its all been good! Tonight I went with a favorite, Weber Chicago Steak, and some butter mixed with Key Lime juice and drizzled over top, salmon was 0.76 Lbs. Grilled corn for a side dish. I've not grilled corn that often, so went with something I was pretty sure would work, cleaned ears with a little salt and butter and wrapped in foil. Put the corn on at the same time as the soaked cedar plank. Let the plank heat for a few minutes, then turned it over and put on the salmon. The temp held right around 300-325. Cooked about 20-22 minutes. That's one of many things I love about cooking fish on this grill, it holds temp well, once you have the temp and time you can walk away and let the grill do its thing! Meanwhile my wife put together some cole slaw and baked beans with black beans. Comfort food. My wife says the Akorn was the best birthday present she ever bought for me! I'd have to agree,
  10. Hey there Kamado Gurus. It’s time I post my June challenge cook. So when it comes to fish, I’m a little particular (some say odd, crazy, choose any word you like) There is something about the taste and texture of fish, and once its cooked, I really hate to eat it. Yes, I know. I’m strange. However I do enjoy sushi, and from time to time I like making it at home. So I decided make sushi for the Something’s Fish challenge. I had to re-read the challenge entry guidelines, and while the fish is not cooked or smoke, the rules state. “Some portion of your challenge entry should be cooked on a kamado.” So by definition, my entry is (should be ,maybe, hopefully, please….) legit. I smoked the rice, and grilled some cucumber. Overall it was a great tasting dish. I would make it again. I really don’t have a recipe, other than seasoning the 2 cups of rice (precooked volume) w/ 2 T Vinegar, 2 T Sugar,and 1 T salt. The spicy tuna roll was diced raw tuna w/ a nice squirt of Sriracha sauce. The other fish is salmon. Once I had the rice prepared, I just made different variations of smoked rice sushi. One thing I finally recognized and learned this time around, is that I’m using too much rice, when I used a ½ sheet of nori seaweed, I couldn’t get a nice closed round circle of sushi. Next time its less rice and I should make better rolls. Please don’t judge my sushi too closely and harshly, I’m nowhere near restaurant caliber when it comes to making and presenting of sushi. smoking the rice comparing smoke to unsmoke short grain sushi rice. grilled cucumbers. Seasoning the rice Spice Tuna prep spicy tuna roll Wasabi prep. Salmon roll nagiri prep Salmon roll photo out of sequence.. pre staging and the Money shot..
  11. Here’s my cook thread for the May Challenge. I found inspiration in the new Milk Street magazine, Christopher Kimball’s new publication 1 pound cannellini beans – soaked overnight, 5.5 cups water, 12-16oz lamb shank, 1 large chopped yellow onion, ½ stick butter, 8 garlic cloves finely diced, 4 thyme sprigs (I used more), 1tsp paprika (I used smoked paprika) and 1 tsp red pepper flakes. Combine all the above in your kamado pot, and bring to a boil. Then place in your oven that was preheated to 325F for 75 minutes. I could have done this step on the kamado, and using the oven was just easier yesterday. Have no fear, the Big Joe was used for the 2nd part of the actual cook. Then remove from the oven, and add (1) drained 14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes and 1 tsp salt. Cook for another 75 minutes on the kamado. Remove from kamado, remove lamb chop bones, thyme twigs, mix in ½ cup chopped fresh parsley,2T fresh chopped dill, and 2T pomegranate molasses. Make the pickled tomatoes: 3 plum tomatoes deseeded and diced, 3T cider vinegar, 1 T fresh chopped dill, 1 tsp Aleppo pepper, 1 tsp sugar, and ½ tsp sale. Serve in your favorite dish, garnish pickled tomatoes w/ more parsley, dill and a dollop of plain yogurt. I had a couple challenges w/ the cook. I couldn’t not find cannellini bean and went w/ great northern beans. I also could not find pomegranate molasses, so I made a pomegranate juice and sugar reduction, which worked just fine. The big issue which resulted in a last minute run to the grocery store was a spoiled package of lamb shanks, which I returned and bought some lamb loin chops as a replacement. I did get flack for buying a flower for the money shot to acknowledge Mother’s Day, and not buying my wife the flower. Thankfully I have time to recover here. For the final plating/money shot, I went w/ my daughter’s idea to use a wedding potato bar approach and used a martini glass.
  12. This was something that I was exposed to growing up around a bunch of Italian-Americans: Grilled Sausage and Polenta. This works great on a kamado. The point of parboiling or poaching the sausage while on the grill (rather than on a stove top) is the extra grill flavor gained from the additional time on the grill. Also, no burst or dried wrinkly casings. Perfect sausage every time! Ingredients: Italian sausage a red pepper a green pepper an onion polenta fresh basil & garlic if using plain polenta beer or other flavorful liquid vinegar salt olive oil Directions: 1) Set up a two zone fire. 2) On the hot side, cook down the chopped or sliced peppers and onions in olive oil. 3) On the cool side, parboil or poach the sausage in the beer (along with some vinegar and salt) on top of the peppers and onions until internal temp of 150 deg F. 4) Cook the polenta on the hot side. 5) Brown the sausages on the hot side.
  13. My entry for the "Veggies" challenge. Vegetable Lasagna is something I have been wanting to try for some time. I am horrible with recipes, I almost never follow nor remember them and always have left over ingredients. (See my last Lasagna recipe, I think it may have had enough extra stuff to make a second batch) That being said I made a concerted effort to write down the actual amounts I used this time. Sauce Ingredients. 28 oz San Marzano Tomatoes - crushed 12 oz Sliced Mushrooms 10 oz Rotel 1 Red onion - diced 1 Jalapeno - sliced 1 tbsp Garlic - minced 1 tbsp Olive Oil Cheese Mixture. 30 oz Ricotta (was probably too much, unless you like it very cheesy.) 16 oz Mozzarella (could have used a few ounces more.) 1 Egg 1 Tsp Basil 1 Tsp Oregano Other Ingredients. Lasagna Noodles 16-24 oz Fire Roasted Red Peppers 5-10 oz Baby Spinach First I diced half of the mushrooms to give the sauce a meaty texture. Saute the onion, diced mushrooms and garlic in the olive oil until softened. Stir in the crushed tomatoes, Rotel, jalapeno and remaining mushrooms and simmer for at least an hour (longer would be better) Set aside 1/2 of the Mozzarella cheese, combine the remaining cheese mixture ingredients in a mixing bowl and fold until blended. Cover the bottom of your cooking vessel with a thin layer of the sauce and top with noodles and cover noodles with 1/3 of the cheese mixture. Next the Fire Roasted Red Peppers. Then spinach and another layer of sauce and noodles. Next more cheese mixture topped with another layer of spinach and remaining sauce. Top with remaining cheese mixture and mozzarella. Out to Old Smokey holding true at 350 with a few chunks of mesquite for 45 mins to 1 hour. The cheese really soaked in the mesquite smoke. While the lasagna rested I threw on some garlic bread. First plated pic is while hot and extremely runny. (I think I used too much ricotta and the veggies released a lot of liquid.) The others were done before being reheated for today's lunch. I was pleasantly surprised at how good it was, you almost couldn't tell it was meatless. When I make this again I believe I will reduce the sauce for a longer period and only do 2 layers of the cheese mixture with a little more mozzarella and a little less ricotta. I would probably poke some holes in the top of the cheese to allow liquid to escape and be mopped up. The veggies really do put off what seems to be an excessive amount of liquid. Thanks for looking, and Happy New Year!
  14. My heritage cook - Warsteiner soaked kraut and sausage. While I don't know our full heritage I do know that there was quite a bit of German and with Oktoberfest in the air (I do enjoy a good German beer this time of year, in fact I'm having one as I post this) I decided to stay simple and try to be true to the heritage theme. Living on the gulf coast we have no shortage of really good sausage choices (conecuh being my favorite) but I wanted to try to stay traditional so I sourced my sausages from the Elberta grocery. They carry the same ones used for the Elberta German Sausage Festival. Grab a dutch oven and throw in some sauerkraut an onion and Warsteiner Oktoberfest Special Edition and there you have it. The money shot is plated with dark german bread and spicy mustard. Thanks for looking. Money Shot! Ingredients. Slice onions and top with sausages Cover with Kraut and Warsteiner Put the lid on and to the Kamado After about 45 mins to an hour take the lid off, stir the kraut and put the sausages on top Flip the sausages, stir the kraut and cook another 30 to 45 mins Thanks for looking.
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