The key components: ground chuck from the actual butcher shop, a wheel of brie cheese, an onion, duck fat, herbs, and the tiniest potatoes ever. I mean, look at those things.
Started off by cooking the potatoes and onion in some duck fat with some rub on the grill at 350. Basic idea was to infuse them with smoke so that the flavor would be more uniform throughout. Let them cool when done.
The meat was formed into a shell using the ceramic cast iron pot. The cheese was chilled, sliced, and placed in rind side down (hoping to prevent an oozing mess. This was then layered with half the potatoes and onions, then the other half of the cheese and the remainder of the potatoes. This was all capped with a layer of meat.
The grill was still set to 350. Temp was a tricky thing: the center technically didn't need cooking, but some beef juices that did would certainly drip in there. I went for about 55 minutes, with the center probing at 147. Checking the outside showed a way too high 180, so this beef was done done. The pot kept all the juices in, so it was surprisingly more moist than expected.
For the final shot, this slice was leftovers. Letting it chill overnight helps to show that the layers did in fact stay intact. It was equally tasty with a side of grilled asparagus as it was with these plantains, and the peach cobbler dessert, sadly not pictured, bumps up every meal.
I had in mind to make something with peaches, and then I saw this month's challenge. Perfect timing. Then I saw the recent Food Wishes post for "Baltimore Peach Cake", which confused me for two reasons. First, I'd never heard it called that, I suppose for the same reason no one in Houston would ask for "Texas Brisket". Secondly, it just didn't look like my grandmother's peach cake. Too thick, too bready. Luckily, I had her recipe in an archive, so here we go.
For the peaches, I recommend some that haven't ripened yet so they'll slice easier. Since my cast iron wasn't quite big enough, I did use a regular pan for the leftovers and tossed it in the oven. You know, compare and contrast. Even though I used baking powder as the rising agent, it puffed up way more than I remember as a kid. I wonder if Granny used less. I'm also trying to remember if she left it a bit doughy and under-baked, more like a Danish pastry. Anyway, plate with some homemade whipped cream and sprinkle with a dash of cinnamon sugar.
Since I still had some peaches left over, I chopped them up to make a peach salsa. Peaches, a bit of onion, green pepper, lime juice, honey, and cilantro. Shrimp were marinated in olive oil, lime juice, cayenne, chili powder, and sweet pepper sauce. Grill until done, then make tacos with the salsa and some crunchy slaw. Corn was also grilled and served with butter and Old Bay.
I wasn't kidding when I said I was looking forward to a Great British Bake-off / Kamado crossover. I've wanted to do a tarte tatin for a while, but it is an intimidating dish. Turns out I should have done this long ago. The natural sweetness of the apples combines with the buttery pastry and kamado smoke to create an excellent dessert. The Mrs. was very pleased.
It all started with a from scratch puff pastry. A real one, not a rough puff. The dough is fairly simple, but the magic comes from the sandwiched layers of butter. I did two regular turns, then a book turn, then a final turn. Each process needed an hour in the fridge to cool.
Now for the filling. A simple caramel was made from 235 g of sugar and half a cup of water. You're looking for a lighter brown color. Once done, pour directly into the skillet (pre-greased with 1 tbsp butter).
Important note: no matter how good the caramel looks, do not try to get a swipe with your finger. You will get a bad blister immediately. The caramel will, however, taste delicious.
The apples were honey crisp. I believe I used five (probably should have used at least one more). Used a quick corer, then cut the wedges in half. Arrange the bottom layer on top of the caramel in a nice pattern, since this is basically an upside down cake. Then pile the rest of the apples in.
Roll out the dough to cover the entire skillet. Cut off the excess, but leave enough that you can tuck the edges down between the apples and the side. While the tart was cooking, I used the excess dough to make some quick cinnamon turnovers.
Now assembled, put on the grill at 400-425°. Bake for about 40 minutes and check for doneness. I went for 45 overall.
Allow the tart to cool, then the moment of truth: turning it out. Any extra juices should be poured back over the apples.
While the grill was still hot, I cooked up some bacon wrapped sweet and sour shrimp. A slice of tarte tatin and a glass of port was a great end to this celebratory meal.
I didn't plan on joining this month's challenge. I've never cooked any seafood on the kamado, as I'm always paranoid about under cooking and getting someone sick, especially now that my wife is six months along. But she loves seafood and really wanted me to make a recipe she found, so here we go.
Step one: Halve and peel peaches, then soak in lemon water.
Step two: Make the corn and bacon relish. Cut the bacon small, cook until fairly crisp, then pour off most of the oil. Add in (frozen) corn until warmed, then add a splash of cider vinegar. Salt and pepper to taste, then keep warm until time to plate.
Step three: Prepare the asparagus. Toss in olive oil, then add rub. Foil up and grill around 350°.
Step four: Make the fish rub. In relative amounts, use one portion of cinnamon, two of cumin, and four of paprika. Salt and pepper to taste. Apply to the rub to the filets, then lightly rub with olive oil. Drizzle honey on top, then move the filets (on a cedar plank) to the grill. Cook until done (minute were twenty minutes).
Step five: Once the fish is on the grill, also add the peach halves. Grill about ten minutes on each side.
Plating: Top the salmon with some lemon butter (lemon zest with 4 tbsp melted butter). Drizzle honey over peaches.
Final step: ENJOY! This actually turned out really well. I was suspicious of the cinnamon in the fish rub, but it came through very nicely. And though I know this already, I really need to grill fresh fruit more often. Such a nice way to end a meal.