Tag Archives: beef

Stir Fry Curry…in a hurry…my memory is blurry

My hubby loves curry and spicy stir fry. His birthday is today so I got the girls, came home, and started prepping while they drew homemade cards for Dad!

Here are the things I KNOW went in this dish…

2 medium red potatoes/large dice

3 carrots/peeled and sliced on the bias

1 crown of broccoli, cut into small florets

Half a red onion/cubed

Sliced green ‘tops’ of one bunch of bok choy

1 red pepper/large sliced and cubed

1 piece boneless sirloin steak (about a pound, sliced into 1 inch “cubes”)

3-4 large mushrooms/sliced

Seasoning (get ready because I am thinking out loud) – Sesame oil, coconut oil, fish sauce, coconut aminos, grated fresh ginger, granulated garlic, rice wine vinegar, tumeric, galangal, juice and zest of 1-2 lime, onion powder, orange juice….

Let’s be honest…I. Don’t. Measure.

I put all this stuff in a bowl (minus the oils) with the meat (until the meat was half submerged) to marinate for about 20-30 minutes while I prepped #alltheveggies.

Then I got out ‘ye olde trusty wok’ and added the oils and the potatoes. Cooked for about 10 minutes and added carrots and broccoli to cook for 10-15 minutes.

Added seasonings (pretty much until I could smell things and the seasonings could be seen) and then peppers and onion and cooked for another 5 minutes and then added bok choy and mushrooms.

Stirred and cooked down for another 5 minutes…all of this was on medium high.

Removed all that and put in meat…cooked that and added veggies back in and then half a can of full fat coconut milk and turned the heat up to high and cooked it down for about 3-5 minutes.

Let the liquid cook down and served!

The coconut milk makes it a little “creamy” and mild.


Have I mentioned I love the Crock Pot?

A crock pot is a superb invention.  These things have been around since the 70’s (natch) and have been making life simple for all of us for 40+ years!

I took Dolores to the Buford Highway Farmer’s Market when she was here about 2 weeks ago.  While I heart YDFM, this other market has an ENTIRE European Section complete with deli and bakery AND they have Curry Ketchup for currywurst, which is a magical delight I ate my weight in in Germany.

So – the meat here is lots of specific cuts to Korean and Latino and Asian and European cuisines and they had stew beef which was gorgeous AND cheap – so I bought 2 packs to freeze.

Took the stew beef and cut it into about 1-2 inch cubes and coated them in plain flour, so there would be a ‘thickening agent’ in the crock pot, and put them in the pre-heated crock pot with about 1 T of olive oil and about 3-4 crushed garlic cloves.





Then I put in about 4 cups of chicken stock, 1 cup red wine, S&P, 4-5 thickly sliced peeled carrots, 4-5 large diced red potatoes potatoes (skin on), and 1 onion (chopped large), covered it and let that cook overnight (about 8 hours) on LOW.






When it was done in the AM (and it smelled SO GOOD to wake up to!) I stirred in about 1/2 cup of sour cream (you could also use plain yogurt), tasted it, added a bit more S&P and let it cool while I got ready for work and put it in the fridge for later for dinner.






For you vegetarians out there, you could just do the veggies and vegetable stock for about 2 hours on low and still add some yogurt or sour cream to have some good ‘stewed’ vegetables.

Seems odd to have stew in the summer, but I think ANYTHING made in the crock pot makes life easier and it just SO HAPPENED I didn’t get home until about 7:15 from work, so a dinner that was already prepared was super convenient!

I am a genius!

OK – maybe not a ‘genius’ but I figured something out that I think is pretty helpful when making certain items.

I worked Saturday and we have various, sporadic, welcoming ‘grill and courtyard’ areas around my property that are ‘first come, first serve’ and were ALL being used.  GREAT sales tool when you are touring but a HORRIBLE reminder that you are working on a Saturday, are STARVING b/c you had no lunch break, and  a bad reminder that you would love to actually leave work @ 5 instead of closer to 6 to get to a place to MEET YOUR FRIENDS or family to have a yummy burger and a beer  and enjoy the outdoors like you witnessed so many others doing earlier that day!

Wes texted me and asked, “hey, how about grilling out”,  GENIUS of him to recognize that it was a perfect day for that!  He went to the store and got meat and buns and tomatoes.

I got home and realized I didn’t have any bread crumbs or oatmeal to ‘bind’ the meat together with the egg whites (usually I use one whole egg, but all I had were whites, so that works too), so I looked in the pantry and found (da da DA) –

Joe’S Os (or CHEERIOS!)

I put them in a freezer bag and pounded them down (rolling pin, meat hammer, pot or frying pan) and then added them to the ground beef/scallion/garlic/balsamic vinegar/egg white/S&P mixture…mixed that up and made yummy burgers!

You could also use this for MEATLOAF – if you are out of breadcrumbs b/c who doesn’t have Cheerios??

*formed the burgers, cooked, and ate them – but no photos b/c we were HUNGRY! 🙂

I have 270+ followers?!?!

I was just messing around on my blog tonight and adding a little ‘Yelp’ review button so people can see my restaurant, etc. reviews over there and I was shocked to discover I have that many followers to my blog!  Super excited am I!!!

I am going to have to get more serious as I see that my little blog-that-could which I started to give recipe tips to my friend Jenny now far more readers that I expected.

Tonight, BTW, I made more Slap Yo Mama Chili in the Crock Pot – Winter is just made for Crock pots – don’t you think?  It was raining today and chilly outside and this just seemed like the thing to do.

Refresher on recipe –

1 T olive oil with 3-4 minced garlic cloves, 1/2 chopped red onion, 1t curry powder, 1T slap yo mama spice, 1t cocoa powder, dash S&P, pinch of crushed red pepper, 1T balsamic vinegar – let that all cook and get hot for a little bit and then add 1 lb ground beef (87/13 works great) until it starts to change color and then 1 can each of Northern White Beans and Dark Kidney Beans (both drained AND rinsed) along with about 1/2 cup stock – I used homemade veggie – and 1 LG can each of tomato sauce and petite diced tomatoes

Let that all cook for about 2-3 hours on high and 1-2 hours on low and then serve – YUM!

We had this for dinner and you can always (just like my husband, Wes) add some sriacha sauce for extra heat or sour cream or yogurt to minimize the hot.

Germany – you are a Culinary DREAM!

Wes & I were in Germany visiting the Barader and the German from November 29-December 12.  I am not sure what the Culinary world thinks about Germany, but I personally think German food KICKS ASS!

We had some of the BEST food in Germany.  I have photos and will be posting tomorrow/Thursday.

Sure, it is a lot of meat and sauerkraut and pork – but YUM!

Stay tuned for photos!!!

Spelunking makes me hungry!

So our friends Jennie and Alex came over for dinner Saturday night.  Jennie and Alex have a tendency to have ‘accidental crunk nights’ where they stay out too late and hate life a little the next day – which Wes & I as an old, married couple – LOVE!

We had them over for dinner on Saturday, b/c we peeps on the South Side have to stick together and hang out! 🙂

Needless to say, they had not consumed much food that fateful Saturday and me, being the Hangover-Whisperer that I am, made BURGERS!  (I know, I am a freaking genius).  I have to say, I make burgers quite a bit, but these were really the best ones I have created in a while.

While Jennie and I enjoyed wine and Spinach Dip – recipe to follow – Alex & Wes went exploring in our backyard via a drainage duct/storm water drainage pipe that runs under the interstate (85 South).  It was “dry! isn’t that great?”  – a direct quote from my husband, so they got their flashlights, headlamps, boots, and went Spelunking under the highway!  *Invite open to all males coming to our house for dinner, brunch, or other parties*

They got back and Alex (and all parties in the house) were hungry – so we fired up the grill (CHARCOAL PEOPLE – propane is for amateurs) and made burgers, beer brats, and grilled sweet potato slices.

These burgers were GREAT –

-1 lb ground round (85% lean with 15% fat) PLUS 1/3 lb ground turkey – this mix was KEY

-1 egg

-1 cup oatmeal

-1/2 cup fresh basil, oregano, and sage chopped

-2 minced cloves of garlic

-1/4 c of balsamic vinegar

-S&P to taste

Mixed that up and made burgers – cooked over charcoal and served with fresh tomato, lettuce, pickles, and condiments – YUM

Sweet Potatoes are peeled and sliced sweet potatoes tossed in olive oil, cumin, granulated garlic, crushed red pepper, ginger, paprika, and S&P and then grilled until lightly browned/grilled on each side

Spinach Dip – 1pkg softened cream cheese, 1/4 cup sour cream, 1 c frozen spinach drained and squeezed out water, 1/4 c mozzarella cheese, 1 minced garlic clove, S&P – mix together and bake until hot @ 350 degrees

We also had Johnsonville Beer Brats and Sauerkraut – YUM

Thanks Jennie & Alex for coming over –

Next Day was Pinot Grigio Sunday @ CB’s!

Anyone Need a Private Chef for an Upcoming Dinner? Read THIS!

One of my sister Nikki’s best friends, Chanda, was wanting to have a surprise party for her husband, Jay.  Chan had mentioned getting a private chef and doing a ‘Farm to Table’ Dinner as a surprise and my sister (love her for this) recommended me to do the dinner!  Chan had talked to some Chefs in Charlotte and Nik told her to call me and see what I could do.

Chan and I talked and she was totally open to whatever I was thinking for about 8-10 people for a dinner at their house on June 4.  (Sidebar – the number went to SEVENTEEN – which was a little intimidating to me but WONDERFUL to know that so many people and friends of theirs wanted to be there to celebrate).  She was super gracious and offered a hotel room and prep space, but wanted to keep it as best a surprise as she could.  Lucky for her, I have DEAR friends in Charlotte and knew Jenny and T would be THRILLED to have me stay there and use their kitchen on Saturday and steal Jenny on Saturday night to be my server!

Chan was most trusting in me and really just wanted me to go to the Farmer’s Market off Tyvola in Charlotte and get my ingredients for the dinner there.  She mentioned Grass Fed Beef and when I told Jenny about this, she knew of the farm and called to pre-order London Broil.  Apparently, this farm – Proffitt Farms – is near Kings Mountain, NC and they come to the Farmer’s Market and sell what they have.  Clearly, if you need 10-12 lbs of beef, you MUST pre-order (thanks Bo Benny!).  You can pre-order and then pick it up from Shelly @ the Farmer’s Market.  *SIDEBAR – they do tours and Jenny, T, and Jenny’s sis Andrea went on Sunday for a tour and cooking class and LOVED EVERY SECOND OF IT!

So, with the beef I also bought a WIDE variety stuff, including gorgeous Heirloom Tomatoes from some cute little old man near the end of the covered area, yummy Goat Cheese from a Dairy in Waxhaw (Bosky Acres), a seedless watermelon from this little cutie that was thrown I asked for a receipt, and zucchini and squash that was FINALLY in season.  MANY props to my Cutie and Jenny and T, who beared with me at the Farmer’s Market while I geeked out and kept asking my bank (aka Wes) for money.

After a side trip to Trader Joe’s for Organic items like Buttermilk and Heavy Cream, along with some wine for dinner, we went back to Jenny’s for prep.

Thomas was AWESOME and was there to learn and help me.  Jenny and Wes napped, which was also fine, b/c my Sweetie works hard and drove the whole way to Charlotte AND drove to Independence Blvd to get necessary appetizer spoons and I was going to abuse Bo Benny later!

Here is my sous chef flipping over the zucchini and squash as it broiled!

So we get to Chanda’s with all our stuff like coolers full of yummy meat marinating, pre-cut peaches, blueberry scone ‘pies’, wine blends to match with everything, toasted crostini, pre-made soup, etc.

Start off with some passed hors d’oeuvres of Scallop Ceviche and Peach, Prosciutto, Ricotta Crostini with Honey

Once we sat down to the GORGEOUS table Chan had set outside under the trees with candles and Chinese Lanterns hanging around it, we served the first course (of which I have no photos) – Chilled Cucumber-Avocado Soup with Spicy Shrimp.  I must admit, I talked to the soup the whole time I was pouring it into bowls (ask Jenny) and told it how much everyone was going to love it – again…..Geeking Out!

Next Course, Heirloom Tomato and Watermelon Salad with Feta and Red Onion.  YUMMY.  So fresh, so light, so perfect for summer!  Again, seemed to be a BIG hit!

Here is what 17 salads look like:

Next course?  YUMMY Grass Fed London Broil with Arugula from my garden in GA and Roasted Veggies.  Again – very light and no carbs when you are serving a 4 course dinner.  I wanted to serve Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, but didn’t find any at the Farmer’s Market.  Next time, I would do about 2-3 potatoes per plate and a smaller portion of dessert.

Here is all the beef after it is cooked

And here it is on the plate ready for service

Last Course was Blueberry Scone with Basil Whipped Cream.  While I don’t have a photo of the actual dessert, I have the scones while they were baking

And here is the menu.  Thank you Jenny for getting this awesome paper and for helping me out!  You ROCK!

THANK YOU again to Chan for trusting me with this AWESOME dinner.  I LOVED doing it and cannot wait to get moving on doing it again for someone else!

Anyone having a special occasion?  CALL ME!