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    • By MD_Ag
      Originally I was going to cook some ribeye steaks and scallops for Father's Day, but fate (see below) had other plans. Those items were given away or repurposed, and I had to wait until last night for a second chance at my Father's Day meal. In the interim, I found a piece of tri-tip at the grocers and thought I'd try something out.
      Braised Tri-tip with Parmesan Cream Sauce
      Pan-Fried Scallops
      Garlic and Rosemary Potatoes
      Grilled Seasoned Asparagus

      The meat was seasoned with salt, extra pepper, and paprika, then seared. Then two cups of Marsala wine and one of beef broth were added, along with chopped garlic, bay leaves, and rosemary and thyme sprigs from the garden. I cooked it for about 40 minutes with the lid off to grab extra flavor, then closed it up for the remainder for about 4.5 hours of total cook. When it was done, I pulled the very tender meat out to rest and cooked down the juices to concentrate the flavor.  When I chopped up the meat the pieces went back in this concentrate.  The cream sauce was just heavy cream, butter, goat cheese, parmesan, oregano, and basil flakes.

      The potatoes were cooked with a stick of butter, chopped rosemary, and garlic. When the meat was pulled off the grill, the foil pack of the asparagus went on. When the potatoes were done, I removed them to a bowl, then I ramped up the grill temp to cook the scallops in the potato butter. Should have gone hotter for a better sear, but time was getting tight.

      I was very happy with how everything turned out, the cream sauce especially. It paired great with everything on the plate.
      And now for what could possibly cause me to cancel Father's Day with my wife and son? Well, this little princess decided to gift herself on the 20th for a surprise gift Father's Day morning, a bit earlier than we were expecting.

      Her appetite is nearly insatiable, so it won't be long before the problem of what to do with the pulled pork leftovers takes care of itself.
    • By MD_Ag
      Going for an old favorite of mine, but this time using the grill rather than the stove top. Obviously crab cakes would be preferred, but salmon works well as a substitute when on a budget. One pan is all you need so long as you can clean it out enough when necessary. 
      Salmon cakes:
      4 cans (5 oz. each) of salmon, well drained
      1 egg
      Old Bay
      The goal is to use as little binder as possible. I probably should have used a second egg, but they mostly held up.
      Follow the ingredient list on the box.

      I set the grill for about 300°F with the cast iron pan already inside, since this temp controller tends to run hot. As it got closer to temp I added in a stick of butter. A small latke was used to test the heat, and since it didn't sizzle, I ramped up to 350. The latkes were cooked first in the pan, then I added a little more butter before starting the salmon cakes and squash. Between the rain starting to fall and my two-year old crying for no discernible reason, I forgot to snap a photo of the second half of the cook.

      Overall, I thought it was very tasty. The zucchini squash did great soaking up all the butter, salmon, and latke flavor. The smoke flavor was from the charcoal was mild, doing a good job of complementing the dishes without overpowering them.
    • By MD_Ag
      My parents came into town to visit their grandson, so last night was the perfect time to pull out the frozen pork and make some leftovers.  I prepped the grill for 350°F and went inside.
      To start out, I made the sauce that would cover the entire dish. I used a jar of salsa verde, some large scoops of sour cream, two cloves of garlic, and a handful of cilantro. I wanted to add some fresh onion, but was outvoted. Rules of hospitality demanded I go with my guests' (and wife's) preferences. I blended everything together in the processor, then added a bit more salsa and stirred to combine.

      Once the meat was thawed enough, I tossed it into the skillet with a scoop of duck fat. Got it nice and hot with just a hint of crisp, then transferred it into a bowl for later.

      The rest of the duck fat tub was put in the skillet to fry the corn tortillas. I think I fried up 16 and used 14 overall.
      For assembly, I scooped a good portion of the pork into the tortillas, rolled tightly, and arranged them as neatly as I could.  I was worried the skillet would be too hot from the tortilla frying, but it worked out. I really need a second one, though.  The sauce was poured over evenly and heaping handfuls of cheese spread on top.

      I took the skillet out to the grill and let it go for about 25 minutes. Once the cheese was sufficiently melted, I brought it in and topped with some more cilantro. For serving we had a couple each along with a nice little salad.

      I was really happy with my parents response. They aren't great fans of spicy food, but all the cream and cheese let them enjoy the flavor while avoiding most of the heat. Even better, I now have leftovers of the leftovers!
      Thanks for reading and happy grilling!
    • By MD_Ag
      The goal: make an all-in-one meatloaf meal.
      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.

      Thanks for reading!
    • By Smokingdadbbq
      Mostly butter and brown sugar but there was some fruit involved for this cook so I think it counts 
      baked at about 400 for 35 min ... no smoke this time around lol

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