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Featherblade steak (2 of 9)Steak night is a great concept. Particularly if one can get one’s hands on top quality meat. We are lucky in that respect. But, steak night would be no fun if we just cooked and ate a steak. We needed a bit of experimentation as we did with part 1. For part 2, we decided to check out the merits of Feather Blade steak both flash fried and sous vide. 

Monkfish with red peppercorn sauce (1 of 8)

This is one for the men only. Ladies, while I like having you here and enjoy your company, this is an all male zone today. Now, before you start chaining yourselves to the oven door, this is for your benefit. I’m giving the lads a bit of advice about how to redeem themselves after they forget to do something important. So, girls, be off with you. Lads, read on…..

Rib eye with bone marrow (6 of 9)We decided to have a themed dinner during the week. Hence, Steak Night was invented. However, there is no point in just cooking some steak. I needed to do something a little different. I got to wondering what I could do to add an additional belt of flavour to some already tasty dry aged rib eye steaks. The first thing to do is to make a tasty sauce using five ingredients – Wine (of course), concentrated beef stock, shallots, salt and pepper.  So what, I hear you say, you’ve made that sauce before. And your’e right. But, what about adding some bone marrow to the mix? Will that give things the hit I think they need?

 

Americans, you have lost your way. Dark forces have taken over your once great land. The US of A has fallen foul of deception and now operates to low, low standards. This is not an alternative fact. This is reality and you had better get used to it. Yes, Americans, by and large, you no longer make your own Mac ‘n’ Cheese! You buy packets of stuff and reconstitute it. Revitalising the constitution is something that you may have to do very soon. So keep your reconstituting for matters political. Keep it out of the kitchen. 

Holy Lord! It’s cold around here. Temperatures had dropped below freezing and I had got myself into a real deep winter gloom. This was driven by a number of factors. Firstly, it’s winter. Secondly, we seem to be living in very pessimistic times. Thirdly, the media have been whipping up a storm about the cold weather. One newspaper here in Ireland was telling us to expect “Thundersnow”. They also reported on roads grinding to a halt and flights being cancelled. Thankfully, I’m not completely gullible to this shock tactic journalism. I read elsewhere that “Thundersnow” is not a meteorological term. I also found out that the only flights that were cancelled from Dublin were because of snow in London. Pathetic standards. But the sort of journalism we must expect in a clickbait, post truth world. Now, back to the chicken…

I get a lot of fun out of the blog. It keeps me in touch with friends old and new from all parts of the globe. I learn lots and hopefully I give a little back. One of the ‘friends’ I have gathered to my metaphorical bosom (being male and of “a certain age” my bosom is most definitely metaphorical) is Adam J. Holland, the oddball Texan and author of the excellent RV Chronicles on his Unorthodox Epicure blog. I have cooked numerous chillies over the last couple of years, having been introduced to “real” chilli by the late and great Richard E. McGary our much missed Dallas blogger. Having received a gift of some chillies, I was delighted to tell Adam that I planned to cook a lamb chilli. His reaction surprised me somewhat….

I’ve been doing a bit of cooking with amarena cherries of late. A special offer in the supermarket sent me over the edge of reason and I bought more jars than I will need this side of a catastrophic meteor strike. They say that necessity is the mother of invention and I needed to find some additional recipes for these delicious biter-sweet balls of shininess. A small amount of thinking brought the thought of Sous Vide Duck Breast with amarena cherry Sauce. A conversation amongst friends led to the idea of cooking the skin separately and a delicious dish was born. 

roast-leg-of-goat-8-of-10“Is it not a bit tough?”, “I wouldn’t like the taste”, “The flavour might be a bit strong for me.” So were the comments when I announced I was planning to roast a leg of goat. I hate to have my cooking prejudged. It’s difficult enough to bear the postmortems. However, I am not impervious to the general mood, particularly when it tends towards the doom laden. I needed to make this goat tasty. I needed to demonstrate that I knew what I was at. I needed some inspiration. I settled on Roast Spiced Leg of Goat with Winter Vegetables. That would get them back on my side.

pork-and-chestnut-stuffing-balls-18-of-19Let’s get to the rules first. Stuffing is just that – Stuffing. It should be carefully crafted, blended, seasoned and finally stuffed. It should be rammed into the opening in the unfortunate creature you intend eating. It needs to be shoved in so far that there is no space left for doubt. There is no arguing about it. 

christmas-cake-1-of-3Those who know me know I am not a great fan of the ‘season’. I react badly to being told what to do. I detest enforced jollity. I can’t stand the festive messaging that is driven to fever pitch with recycled TV programmes, regurgitated as nostalgia, while the ‘civilised’ world prepares itself for the outrageous excess that is Christmas. Though, there are a few things I do enjoy during the weeks of ‘traditional’ build up to overcooked turkey and drunken arguing with the relatives.

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