Meals of Yesteryear

Foodie Friday: Meals of Yesteryear

Hello People!

I have a yummy post for you today to enjoy when you are craving beef as I know some of you do.  I am always hankering for a ground steak I used to eat when I was in grade school in the midwest.  This recipe reminds me of that old favorite. It also has a french twist on it with the dijon sauce turning it into more of a Steak Diane in the end.  Either way, it is delicious.

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When I was in the 3rd grade or so, I used to check the paper menu that hung on the wall in my classroom for what the school cafeteria would be serving that week.  If there was anything good on it I would tell my mom when I got home which days I would prefer her to not pack my usual lunch.  One of the lunches I loved was Salisbury Steak with Mashed Potatoes.  The potatoes were nothing to write home about, but the steak I could have eaten mountains of.  Whatever crazy sauce they put on those patties was out of this world good.  I’m sure it was anything but. This recipe is in the same vein as those forgotten steaks of yesteryear, but in a more grown up version.  I think this recipe is perfect for diets or non-diets.  It comes out of a low-calorie cook book, but who cares.  It is the flavor that is important.  The only thing I don’t like about it is the name.  It is very pedestrian.  I used grass fed beef for this recipe.  Use whatever you like.  Try it with other types of ground meat too, like bison.


Juicy Hamburgers Dijonnaise

Ingredients:

1 pound Ground Round

3 tablespoons Ice-Water

2 tablespoons minced Onion

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper (or to taste)

1/4 cup chopped Parsley

1/4 cup Beef Broth

1 tablespoon Dijon Mustard

How To:

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  1. As lightly as possible, mix ground beef with ice-water, onion, salt, pepper and parsley.  Quickly and gently form into 4 patties 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.
  2. Heat a large non-stick skillet until hot over medium-high heat.  Add patties and cook, turning once, until lightly browned outside, about 2 minutes per side (don’t press on them!).  Reduce heat to medium and continue to cook, turning once more until hamburgers are brown outside but still pink and juicy inside, 4 to 6 minutes longer.  You can put a lid on them during the last 4 minutes if you want to cook them through even more.
  3. Remove burgers from skillet.  Pour off any fat.  Add beef broth and mustard and cook, whisking to blend until sauce boils.  Pour over burgers and serve hot.
  4. Optional: Sprinkle extra parsley on top of burgers

You can serve these with rice or mashed potatoes or even a vegetable gratin.  Save room for dessert!  With all of the fat you save with this steak recipe, you can have one.  I recommend a lemon sorbet or berries with whipped cream option. 🙂

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Recipe Ideas

Foodie Friday: Recipe Ideas to Spice It Up!

Hello People,

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I wanted to share a practice that I use in regards to recipes.  I LOVE cookbooks, and that is an understatement, and I love trying new recipes as often as I change clothes.  What can I say? I just get bored eating the same old thing day-in and day-out.  If a recipe really jumps off the page and is beyond amazing, I will cook it again and keep it in my repertoire of food that is really good when I want to eat something I know for a fact is delicious or want impress someone else with my amazing cooking skills (sly fox!).

My system for keeping track of how a recipe fared in my kitchen and stomach is by using check _MG_0918style grading marks.  A check + (plus) means that the recipe was out of the ball park good and will definitely be made again (any recipe I’ve shared on here, the blog, has received that marking); a plain  check by itself indicates that the recipe tasted so-so or had some issues in preparation or difficulties in ingredients.  I may or may not prepare that dish again depending on it’s problems.  If it was a simple matter of overcooking or the wrong proportions of ingredients, it may take more experimenting to decide ultimately; a check – (minus) means that the recipe was a real fail and either is thrown away if it came from a magazine or clearly marked to_MG_0923 ignore if I come across it again in a book.  I place these checks on top of the recipe in bold black ink so that I can see it clearly (pencil can fade or get erased) when thumbing through the book the next time I’m hunting down new recipes.

I also add personal notes in regards to what I think the problems were, what extra ingredients I _MG_0920added/took out, how it didn’t work well halved/doubled, cooking temperature problems, and generally what I thought about how it tasted.  If the recipe was delicious_MG_0919 with the additions I made, then I keep them for the next time I make the dish.  I also know that I can manipulate the recipe for further tweaking if I want too later.

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At one point, I sat down with 4 or 5 five of my favorite cookbooks (books that I’ve got a lot of check pluses in!) and wrote down on a paper recipes from those books, under different headings, that I must try and that would be appropriate for clean eating and/or weight loss.  On that list I cross off the one’s that I’ve cooked and continue on the list when I want to try something new.  I found recipes for all types of meals: dinners, lunches, salads, soups, etc.  Each one of these recipes I “tasted” in my mind before choosing them for the list thinking that they would probably end up as check pluses eventually.  Most do, some don’t. The picture in tomorrow’s post is the result of one such recipe that only gets a plain check from me (Black Bean Burgers).  The taste was good, but the burger fell apart and was a mess.  Tricky to cook too.  Also, the recipe asked for no seasoning.  I found that extremely odd.  Of course, I added my own.  One thing I should have added to this list, is the page numbers that I found these recipes on.  I can just as easily look in the Index for them because the book is indicated (by abbreviation), however, I’m just lazy.

Do you have any ways of remembering how you liked or didn’t like a recipe?  I have so many recipes in books and torn out sheets/cards it’s hard to keep track of.  Perhaps my method can give some of you ideas if you share in my: I-have-too-many-cookbooks “problem.”

Binge Recovery

Inspirational Sunday: Binge Recovery

Hey there people!

I knew my recent post on binge eating would identify with many readers.  It is unfortunate, but one that is common.  I have a feeling that many of us that do this are well-meaning people with kind hearts and intelligent minds.  We don’t usually do anything “wrong.”  Therefore, the guilt of doing this behavior can run very deep in us, due to our nature of always wanting to do the right thing in all areas of life.

At the end of the post I talked about not having all the answers and that I am still working on finding ways to end the cycle, for me, once and for all.  Yes, I think this is something that can be dealt with and healed.  Thinking positively about it is a start.  Telling yourself you will never get better will only reinforce the bad habit.  This is true for many things.

Well, I remembered watching a great video on YouTube about binge eating and looked around for it and found it.  It’s almost like a mini workshop.  There are exercises and homework questions in the video for you to try.  You may have heard and tried many of the things she is suggesting, but I am particularly impressed by her first point: What are you getting out of binging that is pleasurable?  I encourage you, if you are struggling with this issue, to watch and learn about ways to cure this self-sabatoging activity.  We can overcome this.

OR!!!

If you feel the above video is not helpful; one in which you have heard the advice of over and over again to no avail, then perhaps this next video will be of help.  This young woman did not fit into the conventional mold of a typical binge eater and sought alternative therapies to help stop the problem.  She did and has recovered!  Her 30 minute spiel is very honest and further enhanced by her insights into a book she recommends.  Hope this helps.

Comfort Food Recipes

Hello there, all!  Today’s Foodie Friday post has everything to do with one of my favorite tools in the kitchen: my Cook This, Not That! cookbook. If you are dieting and craving your favorite dishes that you USED to eat prior to the diet, look no further than this little life-saver. The boys over at Men’s Health have really put together a fine collection of scrumptious dishes that are careful on the calories but big on the flavor.  I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this little nugget.  There are not only recipes for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but dessert, appetizers, salads and guides on how to create a gajillion stir-frys, crock pot wonders and skewered delights. Plus more!

Some delicious examples for your tastebuds:

Dr. Pepper Ribs

Shrimp and Grits

Sirloin Steak with Mushroom Sauce

Might I just say that this is just a taste of what you can expect from this gem.  One would have to have proper kitchen equipment and at least a small desire to enjoy cooking as well, but I think that is common sense.  However, the recipes are EASY!  Even if you are not “the best cook” or have trouble making food taste good, give this a try because the recipes seem to be foolproof and not lengthy to follow. The ingredients are also easy to find.  Happy cooking!