Flat Iron Steak with Tre Colore Pesto

This dish is awesome! To start, the steak is tender, juicy, and well seasoned. When you take your first bite, you know that you are going to have a great meal. The sauce, makes the meal really. It has different flavors, and they are all so good. You can even use the leftover sauce (if you have any left and you will because the recipe makes a lot) for pasta or something like that. The bread is heavenly. It has that garlic taste that you will crave after you finish the bread. This is a really good meal.
I got this recipe from Rachael Ray: my years in meals.
Ingredients:Four 7 to-8-ounce flat-iron steaks or filet steaks
1 bulb garlic
3/4 cup EVOO, plus more for drizzling
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons pine nuts
1 cup fresh parsley leaves
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
1 head Belgian endive, sliced
1/2 head radicchio, chopped
A handful of fresh thyme sprigs, leaves stripped
Juice of 1 lemon
2 small handfuls grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Ciabatta bread, grilled or warmed in the oven, split and charred or warmedDirections:

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 500 degrees F (or the highest setting).

Bring the steaks to room temperature.

Meanwhile, pull apart the garlic cloves. Roast the garlic until soft. Then rub the garlic on the slices of Ciabatta.Lightly toast the pine nuts in a small skillet over medium heat, then remove to a plate to cool.Combine the parsley, basil, endive, radicchio, thyme, pine nuts, lemon juice and cheese in a food processor. Season with salt and pepper. Pulse until chopped. With the motor running, drizzle in the remaining 1/2 cup EVOO in a slow stream until blended. Transfer the pesto to a serving dish. (Any leftover pesto is delicious on sandwiches or tossed with hot pasta and starchy cooking water.)

Heat a grill pan or heavy griddle over medium-high heat or prepare an outdoor grill.

Drizzle the steaks with EVOO and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes, then flip and cook 3 more minutes for medium-rare. Remove to a cutting board and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

Place the steaks on serving plates and drizzle with the pesto. Serve the garlic and bread on the side.

I give the Flat Iron Steak with Tre Colore Pesto: 5 out of 5 chefs.
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Create Your Own Smoothie

Have you ever wanted a healthy , quick, and easy snack? Well if you do, you can be your own chef and make a one-of-a-kind smoothie! For this smoothie you can adjust the amount of ingredient as you like- depending on how much you want to make and/or how much you like the flavors. Take the ingredients and put them in a blender. Blend until smooth. I concocted my own smoothie, using:

  • raspberries
  • honey
  • strawberries
  • bananas
  • yogurt
  • ice cubes
  • orange juice

Here are some other suggestions:

  • blueberries
  • blackberries
  • cucumber
  • Sprite
  • star fruit
  • mango
  • pineapple
  • pit-less and stem-less cherries
  • juice of a lemon
  • juice of a lime
  • mandarin oranges (seedless)

Try what you like. Be creative and have fun!

Home Made Pasta

You’ve had the regular pasta that comes in a box. Well I have too, but have you had home made pasta? Totally different, right! Well this is the first time I have had home made pasta, but I can tell you this is way better than the box pasta. I did run into one problem. After I cut the pasta into fettuccini, and laid it out to dry, it all stuck together. I learned that I need to use more flour.  To go along with the home made pasta my mom made some home made sauce to go on it. This pasta recipe that I got from the Food Network website is really good. For this recipe I recommend you have a pasta machine, because that will save you a lot of time!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Cornmeal, for dusting

Directions:

To make pasta dough: Combine the flour and salt on a flat work surface; shape into a mound and make a well in the center. Add the eggs and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the well and lightly beat with a fork. Gradually draw in the flour from the inside wall of the well in a circular motion. Use 1 hand for mixing and the other to protect the outer wall. Continue to incorporate all the flour until it forms a ball. Knead and fold the dough until elastic and smooth, this should take about 10 minutes. Brush the surface with remaining olive oil and wrap the dough in plastic wrap; let it rest for about 30 minutes to allow the gluten to relax.

Cut the ball of dough in 1/2, cover and reserve the dough you are not immediately using to prevent it from drying out. Dust the counter and dough with a little flour. Form the dough into a rectangle and roll it through a pasta machine, 2 or 3 times, at widest setting. Pull and stretch the sheet of dough with the palm of your hand as it emerges from the rollers. Reduce the setting and crank the dough through again, 2 or 3 times. Continue tightening and rolling until the sheet is about 1/4-inch thick; (keep in mind, overly thick pasta tastes gummy.)

Now, using the spaghetti cutting attachment, run the sheets through the cutting slot. Dust the noodles and a baking sheet with cornmeal. Coil the spaghetti strands into a nest and allow the pasta to dry for about 10 minutes before boiling.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add spaghetti. Cook for a few minutes until al dente.

I give this pasta: 5 out of 5 chefs:

Spaghetti Burgers

Sounds strange right? Well once I tell you about them your mouth will be watering!  It tastes like a meatball sub. This burger has garlic bread instead of regular buns. The beef is like the meatballs on the spaghetti. Then on top of the “meatballs” it has mozzarella cheese and tomato sauce. If it still sounds strange just try it. Trust me, it will be worth it.

I got this recipe from the Food Network magazine. The side item was fried spaghetti.  I didn’t make the fried spaghetti because we were trying to stay healthy. So instead we had oven roasted potatoes. Those were good, too.

For the fries:

  • Vegetable oil, for frying and brushing
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 ounces spaghetti
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

For the burgers:

  • 1/2 small onion, cut into chunks
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, plus 2 tablespoons thinly sliced, for topping
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1 1/4 pounds ground beef chuck
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup tomato sauce, plus 1 cup warmed for dipping
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 slices mozzarella cheese
  • 4 hamburger buns, split
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  1. Make the fries: Brush a baking sheet with vegetable oil. Heat 2 to 3 inches vegetable oil in a Dutch oven until a deep-fry thermometer registers 365 degrees F. Meanwhile, bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook as the package directs, then drain. Spread in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet and let cool.
  2. Cut the cooked spaghetti into short pieces and fry in batches, turning once, until golden, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with the parmesan and salt.
  3. Make the burgers: Preheat the broiler. Pulse the onion, 4 garlic cloves, 1/2 cup basil and the parsley in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl and add the ground beef, 1/2 cup each parmesan and tomato sauce, the oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste. Mix with your hands until combined and form into four 1-inch-thick patties. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. Broil the patties, turning once, until browned and just cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes. Top each patty with a slice of mozzarella and 2 tablespoons of the remaining tomato sauce. Return to the broiler until the cheese melts, about 30 seconds.
  5. Place the buns split-side up on another baking sheet and toast under the broiler until just golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Brush the toasted sides lightly with the olive oil, rub with the remaining garlic clove and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup parmesan. Return to the broiler until the cheese melts, about 30 seconds.
  6. Place each patty on a bun bottom and top with some sliced basil and a bun top. Serve with the spaghetti fries and warm tomato sauce for dipping.

I give the Spaghetti Burgers: 5 out of 5 chefs

Brioche

What is brioche you ask? It is a rich, firm, and buttery bread. It is good for toasting, sandwiches, and just about everything else! The kneading of the dough takes a lot of work so you might need someone to help you (I asked my mom to help). It takes along time to make so I suggest starting in the early morning. I got this recipe from The Silver Palate Cookbook by Julee Rosso & Sheila Lukins.

  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) sweet butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 8 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  1. Combine milk, butter, and sugar in a medium-size saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and pour into a large mixing bowl. Cool to lukewarm (105 to 115 degrees F).
  2. Stir in the yeast and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir in the salt. Beat the eggs thoroughly in a small bowl and add to the milk mixture. Stir in 7 cups of the flour, 1 cup at a time, until you achieve a sticky dough. Flour a work surface and turn the dough out onto it. Wash and dry the bowl.
  3. Sprinkle additional flour over the dough and begin to knead, adding more flour as necessary until you achieve a smooth, elastic dough, about 10 minutes. This should take about ten minutes. Form into a ball.
  4. Pour 2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil into the bowl. Turn the ball of dough in the oil to coat well. Set dough aside, covered with a towel, to rise until tripled in bulk, about 2 hours.
  5.  Punch the dough down, turn onto a lightly floured surface, and knead for about 2 minutes. Return dough to bowl, cover, and let rise again until doubled, another 1 to 2 hours.
  6. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  7. Dough is now ready to be formed. If you are baking it in loaf pans, use 2 pans 9 x 5 x 3 inches, lightly buttered. For traditional brioche, use muffin tins or imported brioche molds, available in varying sizes from cookware shops. Let formed dough rise until nearly doubled
  8. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes (slightly less for small brioches) or until golden brown. Cool before removing from the pan.

I give the brioche 5 out of 5 chefs

Hummus

Don’t mistake hummus for humus, the dirt. One is great for flowers and one is much better tasting. This Greek dip is not only good tasting, but it is also good for you. Hummus is mostly made of chickpeas (did you know that people have been eating chickpeas for more than 7,500 years?) It is really high in protein. I got this recipe from Food Network.com. It was a little dry and chunky so I added some olive oil and blended the mixture an extra 30 seconds. I suggest serving it with Stacy’s Pita Chips (multigrain).

  • 2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or more as needed, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley leaves, plus more for garnish
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dark Asian sesame oil
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 12 to 15 grinds black pepper
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Paprika, for garnish
  1. In a blender combine all the ingredients except the parsley and paprika to be used for garnish. Blend on low-speed until smooth. You’ll have to stop the blender often to push down the ingredients. If the mixture is too dry and you’re having trouble blending it, add a few more tablespoons of olive oil to help things along.Scrape the hummus onto a plate.
  2. Sprinkle the paprika over the top, drizzle lightly with olive oil, scatter some parsley on top, and serve. You can make the hummus up to a couple of hours before you serve it. Cover the top with plastic wrap and leave it at room temperature.

I give this hummus: 4out of 5 chefs

Oven-Barbecued Beef Brisket

I got this recipe from the Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. The meat was very sweet and tender, but it was a little dry so you should make sure to use the barbecue sauce. I suggest serving it with peas and mashed potatoes. Delicious!

  • 1 3 – 3 1/2 pound fresh beef brisket
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion (1 medium)
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon instant beef bouillon granules
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1  1/2 cups bottled barbecue sauce
  1. Trim fat from meat. Place meat in a 13x9x2-inch baking pan. In a small bowl stir together water, onion, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, chili powder, bouillon granules, cayenne pepper, and garlic. Pour over meat. Cover with foil. Bake in a 325 degree F oven about 3 hours or until tender, turning once. Remove meat; discard juices. Thinly slice meat across the grain. Place on a serving platter. Serve with barbecue sauce.

I give the oven-barbecued beef brisket: 4 out of 5 chefs