Category: Beef

Grilled Skirt Steak

Grilled Skirt Steak

Skirt steak is a versatile and flavorful working muscle. This steak is a quick and easy meat to prepare and cook. Avoid overcooking as it becomes very tough and dry.

Light the grill in advance so it’s nice and hot. Season the steaks with salt and pepper and drizzle with a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Not too much or the flames flare up. Or use your favorite marinade or rub.

Cut with the Grain for Fajitas and Stir Frying

This steak is also great to use for fajitas, and an excellent choice for a stir fry. I know it goes against custom, but for these recipes, cutting with the grain results in tender pieces that are easier to bite into. To make fajitas, season, grill and rest for 5 minutes. Slice with the grain for easier chewing. Cut the skirt steak with the grain raw before quickly browning in the wok.

Check out our grilled onion recipe. Great as a side with the grilled steak or as a component of fajitas.

Grilled Skirt Steak

Watch the Grilled Skirt Steak video here.

 

Grilled Ribeye Steaks (boneless)

Grilled Ribeye Steaks (boneless)

Ribeye steaks are tender and tasty. Salt and pepper are all that’s needed to properly season with a brush of oil to prevent sticking. Not too much or the flames flare up.

Heat the grill about 15 minutes before cooking. You want a hot grill. Keep the lid open if the steaks are thin (about 1-inch thick or less). They cook too fast with the lid closed and don’t get the nice sear marks that provide so much flavor.

Toss a couple of steaks on the grill and while they’re resting, grill some corn.

Watch the Grilled Ribeye Steak Video Here.

 

Skirt Steak Fajitas

Tex Mex

Fajitas are a Tex Mex dish traditionally using skirt steak. Today there are endless variations using chicken, pork, lamb, shrimp, fish and, of course, vegetables.

Topping options include shredded lettuce, cilantro leaves, shredded cheese, sour cream, sliced olives, pico de galo and/or guacamole. Heat is easily controlled by putting hot sauces on the table and letting each dinner tap a drop or two on or just shake the bottle all over everything! Our tolerance for heat is mixed in our family.

Tex Mex

I grilled a red onion and those absolutely adorable and deliciously sweet baby bell peppers, as well as the steak, which adds a lovely smokiness to the fajitas and uses less oil. Don’t overcook, keep some texture to the vegetables, just a little crunch.

Tex Mex

I recently read that if you leave the skins on the red onion while grilling, the onion won’t fall apart, which didn’t work for me. Slide a wood skewer through the side of each thick slice to hold it together that works pretty well.

Tex Mex

Toast the tortillas on the grill, while the meats rests. Lay out all the ingredients and let everyone craft their our own.

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For a gluten-free version or to go carb free, put salad greens on the plate and arrange the other ingredients across the top. The pico de gala or guacamole are perfect substitutes for a salad dressing.

Skirt Steak Fajita Recipe

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Skirt Steak Fajitas

Tex Mex

For a gluten-free version or to go carb free, put salad greens on the plate and arrange the other ingredients across the top. The pico de gala and guacamole are perfect substitutes for a salad dressing.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 portions
  • Category: Beef/Main Dish
  • Method: Grill

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 large cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 ½ pounds skirt steak
  • 16 baby bell peppers
  • 1 red onion cut into thick slices
  • olive oil
  • coarse salt

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the oil, lime juice, garlic, salt, coriander, cumin, oregano and pepper flakes.
  2. Pour the marinade over the steaks in a non-reactive bowl and toss to coat well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours.
  3. Preheat the grill.
  4. Drizzle the peppers and onions with a little oil and a sprinkling of salt.
  5. Cook the peppers and onion slices on the grill first until al dente and slightly charred. Slice the bell peppers and separate the onion into rings.
  6. Remove the steaks from the marinade and dab to remove excess liquid, which can cause flare ups.
  7. Place the steaks on the grill and cook a minute or two per side, turning to char nicely until done. Don’t overcook, or the meat toughens.
  8. Let the meat rest for a few minutes.
  9. Toss the tortillas on the grill for 30 seconds flip and cook for 30 seconds more. Wrap in a towel to keep in the moisture.
  10. Thinly slice the meat against the grain and serve with the peppers and onions and any other condiments you like, such as pico de gallo, guacamole, sour cream, shredded lettuce, sliced olives and/or shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese.

Steak with Green Peppercorn Sauce

Steak au Poivre with a little twist using mini bell peppers served with creamed spinach and roasted butternut squash.

When I cleaned out the pantry during my reorganization spree this month, I came across a jar of brined green peppercorns and I was inspired to make Steak with Green Peppercorn Sauce. This is a favorite dish of
ours, and one I had for the first time on our honeymoon at Euphemia Haye in Longboat Key. That was almost 35 years ago and I see the steak is still on the menu!

I decided on filet mignon for the steak and spinach and roasted butternut squash as the sides. I had previously picked up a bag of mini assorted bell peppers and thought they would make an interesting twist on this recipe. I like to prep meals in advance, this makes dinner less hectic and it also means that many of the pots and pans and cooking utensils are already washed.

Spinach contains lots of water and I prefer to precook it to get rid of excess moisture, which thins the sauce. Place the spinach in a large saucepan with a little cold water, cover and cook over medium-high heat until wilted, about 2-3 minutes.

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Remove the tops of six of the mini peppers (mixing up the yellow, orange and red) and then use a vegetable parer to scoop out the seeds and ribs. Slice them into thin rings and toss them into a sauté pan with a little olive oil and unsalted butter (about 1 tablespoon each), a small minced shallot, about a tablespoon of green peppercorns, a few sprigs of fresh thyme and good covered for a few minutes. Pour in a little dry white wine (1/2 cup) and reduce bit before adding a cup of heavy cream. The sauce is ready once it comes to a rapid boil.

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I had purchased already cut butternut squash, which I tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and herbes de Provence in a small baking dish. Pop the squash, spinach and sauce went into the fridge for later.

Season both sides of the filets with lots of freshly ground pepper and salt and then place them in a super hot sauté pan with a little olive oil and cook two minutes each side. To finish the cooking,  po the pan in a 350 degree F preheated oven for 10 minutes for medium rare.

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Let the filets sit on a cutting board and add 1/4 cup bourbon to the sauté pan. To soften the harshness of the alcohol, I lit the bourbon and let it burn out.

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Stir in the sauce (removing the thyme sprigs) and reheat.

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Slice the meat and spoon the peppers over the top. Stir in the spinach to the remaining sauce and reheat. Place the creamed spinach around the sliced meat and then scattered the roasted squash on top of that.

This is a rich dinner, one you might consider making for a special occasion.

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Steak au Poivre

Steak au Poivre with a little twist using mini bell peppers served with creamed spinach and roasted butternut squash.

This recipe uses brined green peppercorns, freshly ground black pepper and sliced fresh mini bell peppers for a little twist on this classic recipe. Prep this dish in advance to make clean up easy.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 40 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 mins
  • Yield: 4 portions
  • Category: Beef
  • Method: Saute

Ingredients

Sauce

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 6 whole mini bell peppers, tops, inner ribs and seeds removed
  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoon drained brined green peppercorns
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Meat
  • 3 eight-ounce filet mignon steaks
  • kosher salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup bourbon

Instructions

Sauce

  1. Melt the butter with the oil in a saute pan over medium heat.
  2. Stir in the peppers, shallots, peppercorns, thyme and salt; cover and sweat for 3 minutes.
  3. Add the wine and boil for a couple of minutes.
  4. Add the cream and cook until it comes to a rapid boil.
  5. Remove to a storage container.
  6. Meat
  7. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  8. Generously season both sides of the steaks with the salt and pepper.
  9. Heat the oil over high heat.
  10. Add the steaks when the oil is almost smoking and cook for 2 minutes per side.
  11. Pop in the oven for 10 minutes for medium rare.
  12. Remove to a cutting board to rest.
  13. PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER
  14. Add the bourbon to the meat pan, ignite and let burn. Add the sauce, discarding the thyme sprigs, to the pan and reheat.
  15. Slice the meat, place on a warm platter and cover with the peppers from the sauce.
  16. Stir the spinach into the sauce and reheat. Place the spinach along the outside of the sliced steak.

 

Spicy Beef Chili

My cousins are driving down from Conesus NY tomorrow for lunch; we’re having Spicy Beef Chili and garlic bread with triple chocolate and pumpkin biscotti for dessert.

They make a round trip in one day, five hours each way! Yes, they’re a little nuts but Linda and Cyndi love road trips and Linda’s husband Dave is a good sport and comes along too. The reason for the short visit is they live on a farm. Not a food farm, a horse farm, and the animals need them back in time for dinner.

The farm has been in the family since I was a little kid. I remember spending many weekends there and learning how to groom the horses and muck a stall. I’m glad my little rascal Lacy is not as labor intensive!

Lacy

I hadn’t given the menu much thought. Lunch is somehow much easier than a dinner party; there were no to do lists or even a grocery list. When I got to the meat counter they had some coarsely ground Black Angus beef for chili and that was my inspiration. I picked up some bell peppers, a jalapeño, a head of garlic, canned fire-roasted diced tomatoes and kidney beans. I didn’t give much thought to the garnishes until later and Eric will pick those up tomorrow am and get a baguette for the garlic bread.

A good rule to remember when chopping vegetables is to look at the size of the ingredients in the recipe. In this case, the kidney beans. Cut the bell peppers into a dice similar in size to the beans. This allows a nice combination of ground meat, peppers, bean and tomato to get on a spoon and you enjoy all the flavors together in one mouthful.

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The jalapeño, however, should be minced. The smaller the cut the more cells that are exposed and more flavor transfers to the chili. Also, you don’t want to be the one to get a large piece, especially if it’s particularly hot!

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Ground beef cooks up quickly, no long braising needed, and this chili comes together in about an hour and a half. Start by browning the meat on high in a couple tablespoons of olive oil and break it up into crumbles with the edge of a wooden spoon.

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Add the onions and cook five minutes. Add the chopped peppers, jalapeño, garlic, and the spices. Stir into the meat; the fat and heat release the essential oils of the all those delicious spices more effectively that liquid. Cook and stir occasionally for five minutes.

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Stir in the tomatoes and stock and simmer for 45 minutes.

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Add the drained beans and cook until heated through, about five minutes.

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Put out bowls of sour cream, shredded cheese and thinly sliced scallions to top off the chili.

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It’s a delicious fall lunch that hopefully will keep them full for their long trek home along with some baggies of biscotti for snacking.

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Beef Chili

Ground beef cooks up quickly, no long braising needed, and this chili comes together in about an hour and a half. Adding the spices into the meat and vegetables allows the spices to bloom in the fat before adding the liquids.

  • Prep Time: 25 mins
  • Cook Time: 50 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 mins
  • Yield: 8 portions
  • Category: Beef

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 cups diced onion (1 large onion)
  • 1 each red and yellow bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced
  • 2 tablespoons jalapeño, minced (1 large jalapeño)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic cloves, minced (4 large cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon dried, ground ancho chili
  • 1 tablespoon dried, ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon dried, ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried, ground chipotle
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 2 cans (15.5 ounces each) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • Garnishes
  • sour cream, shredded Cheddar or Monterrey Jack cheese, thinly sliced scallions.

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a 7-quart Dutch oven or large heavy-bottomed pot over high heat. Add the beef and brown while crumbling the meat with the edge of a wooden spoon.
  2. Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in the bell peppers, jalapeño, garlic, ancho chili, coriander, cumin, oregano, salt, chipotle, cinnamon, paprika, thyme and bay leaves and cook on medium-high for five minutes.
  4. Stir in the tomatoes and stock and simmer for 45 minutes.
  5. Add the beans and continue cooking another 5 minutes, until the beans are hot.

Notes

Chili freezes well.

Beef Tacos with Lime Sour Cream

In our area, it’s hard to get a good taco. No offense to fast food establishments or many of our local restaurants but the flavor profile is very generic. Interestingly, when I perused taco recipes, I was surprised to see so many using generic chili powder, maybe that’s why they all taste the same. These Beef Tacos with Lime Sour Cream use my unique seasoning blend for maximum flavor.

I used a combination of my go-to spices: ancho chili powder for its warm smoky characteristics, cumin, coriander and Mexican oregano because you can’t make tacos without these traditional ingredients and for a little heat, chipotle powder.

There are many garnishes to choose from. I like to put shredded cheese over the top of the tacos and let it melt and then drizzle a sauce, like the lime sour cream recipe included here. I might top one with salsa crudoone with guacamole, and another with chopped scallions and pickled jalalpenos. If you can’t decide or want to mix it up, put little dollops of a few toppings on your plate to have something different with each bite!

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Method

Heat the oil in a four-quart Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed saucepan over high. Place the beef and salt in the hot oil and with the tip of a wooden spoon break it up into crumbles. Cook until the beef is no longer red.

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Stir in the onions and garlic, cover and sweat for five minutes. Add the ancho chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano and chipotle chili powder, stir and cook for 30 seconds.

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Stir in the tomatoes and water, bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for one hour, stirring occasionally to prevent the beef mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

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Use a 1/4 cup measure to scoop the taco mixture onto each tortilla. Fold and put on a plate or platter.

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Sprinkle the top with shredded cheese and melt in the microwave for 15 seconds or in the oven. Drizzle with the lime sour cream sauce and garnish to your liking.

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Whisk together and pour into a squeeze bottle.

 

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Beef Tacos

I used a combination of my go-to spices: ancho chili powder for its warm smoky characteristics, cumin, coriander and Mexican oregano because you can’t make tacos without these traditional ingredients and for a little heat from chipotle powder.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 5 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35 mins
  • Yield: 6 portions
  • Category: Beef

Ingredients

  • Lime Sour Cream
    1/4 cup sour cream
  • zest of one lime
    pinch of Kosher salt
  • Beef Tacos
    2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves,
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano, preferably Mexican
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle chili powder
  • 1 can (15 ounces) fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 12 six-inch round soft tortillas, wheat or corn
  • Garnishes: shredded cheese, such as Monterrey Jack or Cheddar, lime sour cream, chopped cilantro, chopped scallions, pica di gallo, chopped pickled jalapenos, sliced black olives, avocado slices sprinkled with lemon juice and salt, shredded iceberg lettuce sprinkled with salt, guacamole or anything else you like.

Instructions

  1. Lime Sour Cream
  2. Whisk the sour cream, lime zest and salt together.
  3. Put in a squeeze.
  4. Beef Tacos
  5. Heat the oil in a four-quart Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed saucepan over high. Place the beef and salt in the hot oil and with the tip of a wooden spoon break it up into crumbles. Cook until the beef is no longer red.
  6. Stir in the onions and garlic, cover and sweat for five minutes. Add the ancho chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano and chipotle chili powder, stir and cook for 30 seconds.
  7. Stir in the tomatoes and water, bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook for one hour, stirring occasionally to prevent the beef mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  8. Use a 1/4 cup measure to scoop taco mixture onto each tortilla. Fold and put on a plate or platter.
  9. Sprinkle with shredded cheese and melt in the microwave on high for 15 seconds or in the oven for two minutes.
  10. Drizzle with lime sour cream sauce and garnish to your liking.

 

 

Meatloaf with Spicy Ketchup

Meatloaf is versatile. Use ground meat or poultry and simply change up the herbs and spices or add in some vegetables and you create an entirely different flavor profile. Try this recipe for Meatloaf with Spicy Ketchup.

Bread crumbs, originally used as a filler when meat was rationed during WWII or to stretch a meat dish on a limited budget, are still worth adding in a small amount because they absorb juices during cooking and keep the meatloaf moist.

Meatloaf can take many forms. Free form, stuffed into a loaf pan, individual mini meatloafs; or make meatballs. Mini meatballs are great hors d’oeuvres, serve with a dipping sauce. The possibilities are endless.

I like to make individual free-form meatloaves, which get a nice crust on the top and the sides. I use a scale, an inexpensive one with a needle dial that is more than sufficient. Weighing and shaping each meatloaf ensures they cook evenly and everyone gets the same portion size.

Meatloaf and meatballs freeze well. Place on a tray and put in the freezer. Once frozen, wrap tightly and return to the freezer. Don’t thaw before using, cook the meatloaf frozen and add the frozen meatballs to a sauce.

This is a basic recipe, which yields five and one-half pounds of the mixture. This can be made into 11 seven-ounce mini meatloafs, 40 two-ounce meatballs, one or two large meatloafs, or a combination. I’ve also included a spicy ketchup sauce for glazing the meatloaf during the last ten minutes.

Sauce

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Whisk together the ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, ancho chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano and chipotle powder. Try this with a hot Dijon mustard, such as Inglehoffer, for an extra kick.

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Meatloaf

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Crack the eggs into a large mixing bowl, add the milk and beat until frothy.

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Stir in the breadcrumbs, onion, cheese, mustard, herb seasoning, garlic, salt and pepper.

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Add the meat to the bowl.

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Knead the breadcrumb mixture and meat together until thoroughly combined.

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At this point, I take a spoonful and panfry it to check on seasonings an important step in recipe development and an easy place to make adjustments.

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And I’m always happy to have a nosh! No changes needed – wish I had cooked a bigger piece…

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Forming

 

Mini meatloaves: 7 ounces

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Meatballs: 2 ounces

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Place on the lined baking tray and bake.

These pictures are to show you the various shapes. Don’t cook on together!

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Mini Meatloafs

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Baking

The optimum internal temperature for a cooked meatloaf or meatballs is 165 degrees F.

Remove the meatloaf 10 minutes before the end cooking time, around 155 degrees F internal temperature, and generously brush the spicy ketchup over the top and sides.

Rest the meatloaf 10 minutes before slicing to allow the meat to set.

Large Meatloaf – about 2 to 2 1/2 pounds

  • Fresh: 300 degrees F for one hour
  • Frozen: 350 degrees F for 20 minutes, lower the heat to 300ºF and continue baking for 40 minutes

Mini Meatloaf – 7 ounces each

  • Fresh: 300 degrees F for 25 minutes
  • Frozen: 350 degrees F for 15 minutes, then 300 degrees F for 30 minutes

Meatballs – 2 ounces each

  • Fresh: 350 degrees F for 12 minutes
  • Frozen: 350 degrees F for 20 minutes

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Meatloaf with Spicy Ketchup

Meatloaf can take many forms. Free form, stuffed into a loaf pan, individual mini meatloafs; or meatballs. Mini meatballs are great hors d’oeuvres, serve with a tasty dipping sauce.

  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 20 mins
  • Yield: 5 1/2 pounds meatloaf mix
  • Category: Meatloaf
  • Method: Baking

Ingredients

Spicy Ketchup
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons hot Dijon mustard, such as Inglehoffer
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1/8 teaspoon chipotle powder

Meatloaf
3 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 cup breadcrumbs
3/4 cup grated onion
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons coarse mustard
1 tablespoon Italian herb seasoning
2 teaspoons minced cloves of garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 pounds ground beef (15% fat)
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground veal

Instructions

  1. Spicy Ketchup
  2. Whisk together the ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, ancho chili powder, cumin, coriander, oregano and chipotle powder.
  3. Meatloaf
  4. Crack the eggs into a large mixing bowl, add the milk and beat until frothy.
  5. Stir in the breadcrumbs, onion, cheese, mustard, herb seasoning, garlic, salt and pepper.
  6. Add the meat to the bowl and knead together until thoroughly combined.
  7. Forming:
  8. Weigh the mixture for whatever size and shape you want:
    1. Large meatloaf: 2 pounds
    2. Mini meatloafs: 7 ounces
    3. Meatballs: 2 ounces
  9. Place on a baking tray bake in preheated oven.
  10. Baking:
  11. Large Meatloaf – about 2 to 2 1/2 pounds
    1. Fresh: 300 degrees F for one hour
    2. Frozen: 350 degrees F for 20 minutes, lower the heat to 300 degrees F and continue baking for 40 minutes
  12. Mini Meatloaf – 7 ounces each
    1. Fresh: 300 degrees F for 25 minutes
    2. Frozen: 350 agrees F for 15 minutes, lower heat to 300 degrees F for 20 minutes
  13. Resting
    1. Rest for 10 minutes before slicing. This allows the meat to set.
  14. Meatballs – 2 ounces each
    1. Fresh: 350 degrees F for 12 minutes
    2. Frozen: 350 degrees F for 20 minutes

Notes

The optimum internal temperature is 165 degrees F.

Remove the meatloaf 10 minutes prior to the end cooking time, about 155 degrees F internal temperature, and generously glaze top and sides and cook for another 10 minutes.

 

Hamburger / Cheeseburger

cheeseburger

Nothing makes me happier than a good hamburger or cheeseburger, preferably charcoal grille or from a super hot frypan.

Ground Beef

The cuts commonly used to make ground beef are the the working muscles, such as the front and rear shoulder muscles. These muscles have more fat, collagen and connective tissue and are more flavorful than leaner cuts that come from the loin and rib.

Chuck (16-22% fat) and round (10-15%) were the cuts of choice until saturated fat became the scapegoat for almost every malady know to mankind.  Sirloin (5-10%fat) was then added as a lower fat option. Sirloin is not a universal choice for all ground beef recipes, however, because of the low fat content it can be very dry and overly firm when cooked to well done. It’s an excellent choice for steak tartar or a very rare burger.

Typically, you wouldn’t cook chuck or round using a direct heat method such as grilling/broiling or panfrying; they are too tough. Grinding the meat tenderizes it, shortening collagen and connective tissue into tiny pieces that normally require long cooking time at low temperatures with a flavorful liquid. Ground beef can be formed into patties, loaves or used loosely in a sauce. Grinding also lets us undercook the meat for a tender and delicious rare or medium-rare burger

I love a good hamburger, sometimes a cheeseburger. I’m a bit pedestrian when it comes my burger compared to all the varieties that abound these days. I love bacon, but NOT on my burger! I love blue cheese, Brie and all sorts of gourmet cheeses, but NOT on my burger. I love sautéed onions, chili, fruit, salsa and all the other concoctions people are piling onto burgers these days, just NOT on my burger! I’ve been to Bobby’s (Flay) Burger Palace, Five Guys and Danny Meyer’s Shake Shack and I skip the house specialties with the special sauces.

A good bun, cut in half and lightly toasted is an other essential. Cover the bottom of the bun with French’s mustard, a generous helping of chopped onion (red or white), crispy lettuce leaves (iceberg or Romaine), plump, juicy tomato slices seasoned with salt and pepper, a perfectly cooked burger (medium-rare to medium with crispy edges), pickle chips and close it up with the top bun.

Start with a good bun, cut in half and lightly toasted.

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Cover the bottom of the bun with French’s mustard or any condiment of your choice.

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Add a generous helping of chopped onion (red or white), or caramelized onions or ….

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Add some crispy green lettuce leaves.

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Top with tomato slices seasoned with salt and pepper.

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Heat a pan over very high heat. Pour in a dollop of peanut oil and spread it around the bottom.

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Season both sides of the burger with kosher salt and ground pepper and place the it in the pan. Listen for that sizzle! Cook for three minutes.

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Flip and press down to flatten a little. The juices contain fat, which will crisp the outer edges. Cook for two minutes.

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Flip again for one minute and again for one minute more – now it’s time to add cheese if you’re making a cheeseburger.

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A perfectly cooked burger, medium-rare to medium with crispy edges is my preference. Cook for a minute or two less for rare or a minute or two more for well done. Place on top of the dressed bun and add a few pickle chips.IMG_2785Close it up with the top bun and consume!

These remains are the sign of a perfect burger, one where the juices run down your hand and every bite has all the fixings!

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Ingredient of the Month: Ground Beef and a Hamburger Recipe

cheeseburger

There’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good hamburger or cheeseburger. This recipe is written for one. Multiply for as many as needed.

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 1 burger
  • Category: Beef
  • Method: Panfry

Ingredients

  • 1/4 pound ground chuck or round per person
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • kosher salt
  • ground pepper
  • toppings of your choice

Instructions

  1. Start with a good bun, cut it in half and lightly toast.
  2. Cover the bottom of the bun with a sauce of your choice.
  3. Add a generous helping of chopped onion (red or white), caramelized onion, or sautéed onions and peppers.
  4. Top that with something crisp and leafy, such lettuce leaves, kale or cabbage.
  5. Adorn that with plump, juicy tomato slices seasoned with salt and pepper.
  6. Set a perfectly cooked burger, which has crispy outer edges and a juicy center, on the dressed bun.
  7. Top it off with pickle chips or pickled jalapeños.
  8. Start with a good bun, cut in half and lightly toasted.
  9. Cover the bottom of the bun with a condiment of your choice.
  10. Add a generous helping of chopped onion (red or white), or caramelized onions or sautéed onions and peppers.
  11. Add some crispy and crunchy leafy greens.
  12. Top with tomato slices seasoned with salt and pepper.
  13. Place a pan over very high heat. Pour a dollop of peanut oil and spread it around the bottom.
  14. Season both sides of the burger with Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper and place the it in the pan. Listen for that sizzle! Cook for three minutes.
  15. Flip and press down to flatten a little. The juices contain fat, which crisp the outer edges. Cook for two minutes.
  16. Flip again for one minute and again for one minute more – now is the time to add cheese if you’re making a cheeseburger.
  17. A perfectly cooked burger is juicy with a beautifully seared exterior with slightly crisped edges. Cook for a minute or two less for rare or a minute or two more for well done. Place on top of the tomatoes.
  18. Add a few pickled chips or pickled jalapeños.
  19. Close it up with the top bun and consume!

 

Slow-Cooked Brisket in Red wine

I learned to make brisket from my Mother-in-Law Ruth. We always had pot roast when I was a kid. I love this dish immediately; with it’s beefy flavor and tenderness. I’ve made many different versions over the years, and this slow-cooked brisket in red wine is simple and classic.

The slow cooker is my best friend over the colder months. A braise cooks low and slow and fills the house with a wonderful savory aroma. A large  7-quart slow cooker makes enough for leftovers for or the freezer.

This recipe is best made in advance. Cook and chill overnight, then defat the brisket by scraping the solid fat off the top. Slice the brisket and put into a roasting pan and cover with the sauce and vegetables.

To freeze, place the vegetables in a self-sealing freezer bag, wrap everything tightly, and pop into the freezer. Cook the meat from a frozen state. Thaw the vegetables and add for the last 30 minutes cooking time.

Slow Cooked Brisket in Red Wine

Line up all your ingredients and tools. Since first writing this post, I’ve stopped browning meat. I find it’s an unnecessary messy step.

Brown the Meat

Five-pounds front-cut brisket
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Place the brisket on a tray or plate and season both sides with salt and pepper.

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Heat the oil in a 7-quart Dutch oven or stovetop-proof slow cooker insert over high heat. Add the brisket, fat side down and sear for five minutes. Flip it over and sear another five minutes. Return to the tray. I am using two 2 1/2 pound cuts and repeated the process. Don’t hesitate to set the timer to remind you when to turn the meat.

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Mis en Place

If this is a term you aren’t familiar with, it means everything in its place. To cook efficiently, it’s best to have all the prep work done in advance. No missing items and no last minute scrambling to chop something in the middle of cooking, which creates a calmer work environment.

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2 cups small diced onion
1 cup small diced celery
1 cup small diced carrot
4 minced garlic cloves
1 tablespoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
2 cups dry red wine, such as a cabernet sauvignon or merlot
1 1/2 cups stock or water
6 carrots, peeled and cut into two-inch pieces
5 all-purpose potatoes, peeled and cut into approximately three-inch pieces

Add the onions, celery, carrots and garlic to the pan with the meat juices, stir  and sweat for five minutes, stirring once halfway through. Stir in the herbs.

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Pour in the wine and stock and bring to a boil for 10 minutes. This reduces the wine a bit and intensifies the flavor.

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Stir in the carrots and potatoes.

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Lay the brisket on top of the vegetables.

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Don’t forget those meat juices – pour them in!

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Cover with water or stock until halfway up the meat. Do NOT cover the meat with liquid. Slow cooking is all about an exchange of flavors between the vegetables and the meat in the cooking liquid. Both exude juices throughout the cooking process. Too much water results in a thin, weak sauce. Have patience and let the slow cooking process work to make an intensely flavored and tender dish.

 Set at a simmer for eight hours.

The key to slow cooking is low and slow. Low temperature, a very gentle simmer, just a few bubbles here and there, and slow cooking time. This method keeps the meat moist.

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Cool the brisket and refrigerate overnight.

Remove the hardened fat by scraping a spoon across the top. This was a particularly lean brisket, very little to remove.

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Remove the potatoes and chunky carrots to a plastic bag and seal tightly.

Thinly slice the brisket on the bias.

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Pour a couple of ladlefuls of sauce in the bottom of the pan.

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Lay the sliced brisket on top.

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Cover the with the remaining sauce and vegetables. Separate the vegetables from the meat if you are freezing.

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Freezing Instructions

Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on top of the brisket to prevent oxygen from getting to it.

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Cover with foil the same way. Then lay the plastic bag of vegetables on top.

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Cover tightly with foil and freeze.

Reheat

From the Refrigerator: Preheat the oven to  400ºF and roast for 40 minutes, or until the gravy is bubbling.

From the Freezer: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and cook for 1 hour. Stir in the vegetables and continue cooking for 20 minutes more, or until the gravy is bubbling.

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Slow Cooked Brisket in Red wine

Braised Beef

A delicious slow-cooked brisket is great anytime. Make ahead and freeze for a special occasion.

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 8 hours
  • Total Time: 8 hours 45 minutes
  • Yield: 10 servings
  • Category: Meat
  • Method: Braise/Slow Cooking

Ingredients

1 five-pound front-cut brisket
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 cups small diced onion
1 cup small diced celery
1 cup small diced carrot
4 minced garlic cloves
1 tablespoon dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
2 cups dry red wine, such as a cabernet sauvignon or merlot
1 1/2 cups stock or water
6 carrots, peeled and cut into two-inch pieces
5 all-purpose potatoes, peeled and cut into approximately three-inch pieces

Instructions

Place the brisket on a tray or plate and season both sides with salt and pepper.

Note: Line up all your ingredients and tools. Since first writing this post, I’ve stopped browning meat. I find it’s an unnecessary messy step.

Heat the oil in a 7-quart Dutch oven or stovetop-proof slow cooker insert over high heat. Add the brisket, fat side down and sear for five minutes. Flip it over and sear another five minutes. Return to the tray. I am using two 2 1/2 pound cuts and repeated the process. Don’t hesitate to set the timer to remind you when to turn the meat.

Add the onions, celery, carrots and garlic to the pan with the meat juices, stir and sweat for five minutes, stirring once halfway through. Stir in the herbs.

Pour in the wine and stock and bring to a boil for 10 minutes. This reduces the wine a bit and intensifies the flavor.

Stir in the carrots and potatoes.

Lay the brisket on top of the vegetables.

Don’t forget those meat juices – pour them in!

Cover with water or stock until halfway up the meat. Do NOT cover the meat with liquid. Slow cooking is all about an exchange of flavors between the vegetables and the meat in the cooking liquid. Both exude juices throughout the cooking process. Too much water results in a thin, weak sauce. Have patience and let the slow cooking process work to make an intensely flavored and tender dish.

Set at a simmer for eight hours. The key to slow cooking is low and slow. Low temperature, a very gentle simmer, just a few bubbles here and there, and slow cooking time. This method keeps the meat moist.

Cool the brisket and refrigerate overnight.

Remove the hardened fat by scraping a spoon across the top. This was a particularly lean brisket, very little to remove.

Remove the potatoes and chunky carrots to a plastic bag and seal tightly.

Thinly slice the brisket on the bias.

Pour a couple of ladlefuls of sauce in the bottom of the pan.

Lay the sliced brisket on top.

Cover the with the remaining sauce and vegetables. Separate the vegetables from the meat if you are freezing.

Freezing Instructions

Place a sheet of plastic wrap directly on top of the brisket to prevent oxygen from getting to it.

Cover with foil the same way. Then lay the plastic bag of vegetables on top.

Cover tightly with foil and freeze.

Reheat

From the Refrigerator: Preheat the oven to  400ºF and roast for 40 minutes, or until the gravy is bubbling.

From the Freezer: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and cook for 1 hour. Stir in the vegetables and continue cooking for 20 minutes more, or until the gravy is bubbling.

Notes

Mis en Place

If this is a term you aren’t familiar with, it means everything in its place. To cook efficiently, it’s best to have all the prep work done in advance. No missing items and no last-minute scrambling to chop something in the middle of cooking, which creates a calmer work environment.

 

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Pot Roast

Before we get into the Pot Roast recipe, here are some tips on making a perfect braise.

A frequent mistake made in braise recipes is adding too much liquid at the start of cooking. This dilutes the sauce. It takes a little faith to put your meat and vegetables in the pot with only a cup of
braising liquid. It pays off in the end when you’re rewarded with a very flavorful sauce from an exchange of flavors between the vegetables, the braising liquid and the meat juices.

Pot roast is a large piece of meat, but don’t be tempted to add more liquid than I suggest. I have taken pictures to show you that the braising liquid increases early in the cooking process. Everything cooks thoroughly and the flavor is robust.

Pot roast is a very simple braise. Brown the seasoned meat and set aside. Sweat the onions, add large pieces of carrots and potatoes, some bay leaves and braising liquid.  Cook until tender.

Braised dishes are best if left to sit overnight. It intensifies the flavor and, since the meats used in braising are fatty, the fat sits on the surface and solidifies overnight, just scrape it off before reheating.

Slice the meat and place on a platter surrounded by the vegetables and cover with a little gravy.

Pot Roast Method

 

Season both sides of the pot roast with salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a 7-quart Dutch oven or large saucepan with a cover over high heat. Add the seasoned pot roast to the hot oil and lower the heat slightly. Brown the top turn and brown the bottom.

Remove the meat and add the onions to the hot pot over medium heat. Cover and sweat for 3 minutes. Uncover, raise the heat a bit and sauté for several minutes until lightly browned.

Toss in the garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Stir in the stock, potatoes, carrots, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Return the meat to pot, pushing a few vegetables aside to snuggle the roast in. This is where it takes a little faith. The amount of liquid is minimal.

Bring this to a boil, lower the heat to barely a simmer, cover and let cook for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until fork tender. For a slow cooker set on low for 6 hours.

This picture shows the pot roast after 3 hours cooking (I used a slow cooker) – notice the increase in liquid at the halfway point.

Cool the roast, refrigerate overnight and then remove the fat. Reheat, slice and serve. The gravy thickens from the starch in the potato, no need to add flour.

Refrigerated overnight:

Fat removed before reheating:

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Pot Roast

  • Author: Trish Lobenfeld
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 7 hours
  • Total Time: 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 portions
  • Category: Beef
  • Method: Braising

Ingredients

2  pounds chuck roast
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, peeled and sliced lengthwise
4 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly smashed
1 cup stock or water
1 1/2 pounds red or white potatoes, cut into 6 lengthwise slices
4 large carrots, peeled into 4 inch chunks
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Instructions

Season both sides of the pot roast with salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a 7-quart Dutch oven or large saucepan with a cover over high heat.

Add the seasoned pot roast to the hot oil and lower the heat slightly. Brown the top turn and brown the bottom.

Remove the meat and add the onions to the hot pot over medium heat. Cover and sweat for 3 minutes.

Uncover, raise the heat a bit and sauté for several minutes until lightly browned.

Toss in the garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Stir in the stock, potatoes, carrots, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Return the meat to pot, pushing a few vegetables aside to snuggle the roast in. This is where it takes a little faith. The amount of liquid is minimal.

Bring this to a boil, lower the heat to barely a simmer, cover and let cook for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until fork tender. For a slow cooker set on low for 6 hours.

Cool the roast, refrigerate overnight and then remove the fat. Reheat, slice and serve. The gravy thickens from the starch in the potato, no need to add flour.