Coconut Rice with Butternut Squash

On December 30, 2013, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Coconut Rice with Butternut Squash
Serve 4-6

2 cups rice
4 cups water
1 butternut squash, cubed
3 tablespoons coconut yogurt
¼ teaspoon coriander
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon cumin

Cut up the butternut squash into bite size cubes and place in a single layer in two vacuum seal packages. Cook for 90 minutes in the SousVide Supreme at 183 degrees.

Meanwhile add the rice into a rice cooker and fill water to the level for two cups of rice if using a cooker. If not using a rice cooker, add 4 cups of water to the 2 cups of rice.  Add the coconut milk and spices and stir together so there are no lumps from the yogurt.  Cook the rice in the rice cooker (or heat in a pan to a boil then cover and reduce heat to a simmer for 20 minutes.)

Once the rice and squash are done, add the two together. Pour in a little olive oil and add some fresh cracked pepper. Serve.

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SousVide Supreme Recipe Contest

On July 5, 2013, in Food, by Chris Baccus
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I would love your vote: SousVide Supreme website’s BBQ Recipe Challenge.

If you follow my blog regularly, you probably have noticed some new recipes featuring the sous vide cooking technique.  I don’t accept a lot of sponsored content on my blog mostly because I find a lot of the products people pitch to me to be in conflict with sustainable cooking.  There are plenty of processed foods that are looking to become a part of the kitchen and simplify at home cooking. Problem is it just isn’t my form of cooking or why I started this blog.

Also some of the kitchen products I’ve been pitched feel unnecessary because well a good ole’ chef knife can accomplish a lot of the same things without losing precious kitchen space. What made the SousVide Supreme product interesting to me is that it honored home cooking where one can use real food and possibly improve the results of home cooking with sustainable ingredients.

So I ventured on some experimentation with this technique and have come away pretty impressed with the results. It can really improve what comes out of your kitchen and is very workable for the home chef who works fulltime.

 

As part of my time with the SousVide Supreme, a cooking contest with several other male BBQ focused blogs – I do quite a bit of smoking and grilling I guess to count as one – is underway where I’m competing in a recipe competition.

I’d love your support for my submitted recipe:

“SMOKED TRI-TIP ROAST WITH CHANTERELLE BRANDY CREAM SAUCE”

You can vote at the SousVide Supreme website’s BBQ Recipe Challenge.

As a bonus, everyone who votes for the “Fan Favorite” will be entered to win a $200* Gift Certificate to SousVide Supreme or Sur La Table (your choice) – just for voting! Hurry, voting ends July 7th.


DISCLAIMER: I was sent the SousVide Supreme to try as part of a blogger outreach program from the company.  The opinions are my own.

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Smoked Tri-Tip Roast with Chanterelle Brandy Cream Sauce

This is my now my official submission to theSousVide Supreme BBQ Recipe Challenge! Please visit the link and vote for me before July 7th! Each person who casts a vote for their fan favorite will be entered to win a $200 gift certificate to www.sousvidesupreme.com!

My time with the SousVide Supreme is coming to an end soon.  It’s been an creative addition to the kitchen and there is a lot I’d still like to experiment with as I continue to see how it bests fits into our home cooking routine.  Two of its best qualities are exemplified in this recipe.

  1. It makes cooking a roast easy while maintaining it’s tenderness.
  2. The time span for when it is ready to eat makes it simple and flexible for cooking a great meal after work.

The second reason is one of my favorite things about sous-vide cooking.  In this case, the tri-tip roast can be left in the water bath for 8-24 hours. Think about that.  If the day at work runs a couple hours long like mine did last Thursday, no worries. Come home and remove it from the SousVide Supreme and make a quick cream sauce that takes 5 minutes.  Dinner served (though my mashed potatoes took a good 12 minutes. So not quite that fast.)

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Looks pretty nice too on the counter.

This recipe was also the first time I used my smoker in conjunction with the SousVide Supreme.  I was a bit concerned that only 2 hours in the smoker wouldn’t add that much smoke flavor to the roast.  Fortunately, my concern was unwarranted as the roast had a great smoky flavor that added to the rich mushroom brandy sauce.

Note: I’d recommend any hearty mushrooms for this sauce. Morels would’ve been great too or even portobello. A strong flavor mushroom combined with the smoked meat is a bit odd at first, because its something unusual. Good thing it is a good unusual. 

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Chanterelle mushrooms were a great find at the Farmers’ Market

I believe the secret to keeping the smoke flavor in the meat is to quickly remove it from the smoker and into a vacuum sealed bag.  If you want more of a smoked flavor, you could put the meat in the freezer for a hour or two before placing it in the smoker. This way you can add another 30 or 45 minutes to the cooking time in the smoker. Just be careful not to totally freeze the meat.

Smoked Tri-Tip Roast with Chanterelle Brandy Cream Sauce

Serves 4

2 lb tri-tip roast

Rub

1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Sauce

3/4 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup Brandy
1/2 cup Chanterelle mushrooms, course chop
1 garlic clove, diced
1 shallot, diced
1 tablespoon fresh italian parsley, finely chopped

The night before mix the ingredients to make the rub and coat the tri-tip roast.  Then cover in dish with cellophane and place in the refrigerator overnight.

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Into the smoker the rubbed tri-tip goes.

Early the next morning prepare your smoker by getting it to a steady 220 degree temperature. Place the tri-tip roast into the smoker and cook it for 2 hours at 220 degrees.  When done, remove it from the smoker and quickly place the roast into a plastic bag. Vacuum seal the roast and submerge into a SousVide Supreme cooker.

Set the SousVide Supreme to 140 degrees and let it cook for anytime between 8-12 hours.

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Time is of essence. Quickly seal after removing from smoker.

Start making the sauce by placing 2 tablespoons of butter into a sauté pan. Add the garlic and shallot and sauté for about 3 minutes to soften on medium-high heat.  Add the Brandy and let it reduce by half.  Then add the Chanterelle mushrooms and sauté for another 2-3 minutes letting the mushrooms soften. Add the heavy cream and salt and pepper.  Let the cream come to a boil then reduce the heat to medium-low and watch to not burn the sauce. It’s best to keep moving the pan to let the flavors blend and to reduce too much boiling of the cream.

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Brandy, mushrooms, cream and butter. One of my favorite combinations.

Once the sauce is ready add the last tablespoon of butter just before serving, remove the tri-tip roast from the SousVide Supreme and remove from the vacuum sealed pack.  Slice the roast against the grain into 1/2 inch slices. Arrange the meat on the plate.

Finally with the sauce add the chopped parsley and 1 tablespoon of butter.  Let the butter melt into the sauce and stir. Serve the sauce with the roast and any sides.


DISCLAIMER: I was sent the SousVide Supreme to try as part of a blogger outreach program from the company.  The opinions are my own.

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Balsamic Strawberry Chicken using a SousVide Supreme

On June 8, 2013, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Making a juicy grilled chicken is not an easy undertaking, even by someone with some serious grilling skills. It’s not difficult getting some great grill marks, but keeping the inside tender while the grill marks are forming often makes for a fairly dry chicken breast. This is where sous-vide cooking can add a guaranteed juiciness to your chicken grilling.

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Sous-vide cooking is a French method that slowly cooks vacuum sealed meat or vegetables in a water bath. It keeps meat nice and tender plus it allows for a wide range of cooking time to so the food can cook while you carryon about your day.  This worked really well for me this weekend as I spent most of the day at work. To come home to most of my meal already done was a nice way to enjoy the rest of my Saturday.

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The chicken and strawberries came from the South Pasadena Farmers’ Market. The strawberries are perfect right now full of rich redness and  I found an organic Fragaria Virginiana variety. These sweet, smaller species of strawberries have a much better flavor than what you find at most grocery stores.

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This is my second dish using the SousVide Supreme and I really do like how tender everything is that comes of out of it. The slow cooking water bath technique is simple. Cutting into tonight’s chicken, even after putting it on the grill to get some nice grill marks, I could see the juices run down the chicken after slicing each bite.  Combined with the rich flavors of the balsamic strawberry sauce the meal was easy to make after a long unusual Saturday at work.

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It only took about 20 minutes to sear the chicken and prepare the sauce. It looked like I spent a lot of time on the dish, but it didn’t take away time I want to spend with my wife and boys.

Later this month, I’m competing with several other BBQ bloggers at http://www.sousvidesupreme.com/sousvidebbq.htm. Check back after June 25 to see what recipe I decide to enter and send me a vote if you want. As a bonus, each person who casts a vote for their fan favorite will be entered to win a $200 gift certificate to www.sousvidesupreme.com.

DISCLAIMER: I was sent the SousVide Supreme to try as part of a blogger outreach program from the company.  The opinions are my own.

Balsamic Strawberry Chicken

Prep Time: 20 Mins Cooking Time: 6 Hours 30 Mins Total Time: 4 Hours 50 Mins

Ingredients:

  • 4 bone-in chicken breasts, skinless
  • 2 cups strawberries, halved
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 shallot, mined
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup red wine, Chianti or Cabernet work best
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Seal chicken breasts in vacuum bag. Heat the vacuumed chicken in a SousVide Supreme at 146 degrees for 4-6 hours. 
  2. Heat the grill on high.
  3. In a small sauce pan on medium-high heat add olive oil, garlic and shallot and cook for about 4 minutes, careful not to burn. Add 1 cup of strawberries, thyme, bay leaf and balsamic vinegar for about 3 minutes reducing vinegar by half. Add red wine and chicken stock and reduce by half for about 7 minutes. Smash the strawberries in the pan using a potato masher or fork to crush strawberries while leaving some small chunks. Reduce pan heat to low.
  4. Remove chicken from SousVide Supreme and pour a small amount of balsamic strawberry sauce over breasts to coat before placing on grill.
  5. Grill chicken on each side for about 7 minutes each side to get some nice grill marks.
  6. While on grill, add the rest of the strawberries to the sauce and cook on medium heat for about 3 minutes before serving.
  7. Plate the chicken adding the rest of the sauce to the chickens.

Korean BBQ Tacos using a SousVide Supreme

On May 27, 2013, in Featured, Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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I’m a very lucky person. There are many reasons: a wonderful family, a loving wife, and once a week the Kogi Korean BBQ taco truck makes a stop right behind the building I work. An order of three short rib tacos makes any day better. It makes life better.

Now I love traditional Mexican street tacos, so much so I have written a ton of reviews on a particular kind of taco – the gas station taco. This passion has led me to appreciate what makes a great taco. The perfect taco combines the elements of a slightly oily handmade corn tortilla, perfectly cooked meat, and the right amount of spices with just enough cilantro and chopped onions to compliment, not overpower the meat, then topped with a smooth, spicy hot sauce. That’s the perfect Mexican street taco.

The Korean taco is an entirely different beast.

Fusion cooking is the mixing of various cultures and is something that can go massively wrong or massively right. The Korean BBQ Taco is fusion and Chef Roy who owns Kogi does it massively right.

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Fresh made corn tortillas

If you’re unfamiliar with the Korean BBQ taco, you’re missing out. It’s sweet, spicy and crunchy. The meat is sauced with a good wet marinade that caramelizes the meat complimented by cilantro-onion-lime relish, topped with lightly pickled cabbage and hot sauce. It’s pure fusion. Combining the elements of Korea’s most famous food this decade – Korean BBQ – with Mexico’s most famous dish – tacos.

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A stack of tortillas after they’ve being heated.

I have been meaning to attempt the Korean BBQ taco at home.  Not copying Kogi, but rather making my own version that’s inspired by the Kogi truck.

This recipe is just that. It’s my own creation of the Korean BBQ taco and to make the meat as tender and flavorful as possible I decided I’d try a new style of cooking while I’m at it. I was contacted by SousVide Supreme who wanted to see what I could do using the sous-vide method (translates to “under vacuum”.) This looked like an excellent opportunity to make a tough meat, I used flat iron steak instead of short ribs, into something tender and juicy. Plus how more fusion can you get then a Mexican taco + Korean BBQ + French cooking method.

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SousVide Supreme with vacuum pouch sealer

Sous-vide involves cooking a vacuum sealed bag of meat or vegetables submerged in water at a consistent temperature. The method produces food that is cooked on the outside and inside at the same “doneness” without overcooking, while keeping the food juicy.  The consistent temperature of the water allows you to have the food ready in a large window of time. For example, the flat iron steak I made is ready anytime between 8 to 24 hours great for a long Memorial Day weekend when our family is running around having fun not knowing exactly when we’ll be home for dinner.

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Marinated flat iron steak submerged in SousVide Supreme

We spent the afternoon at Santa Monica Beach enjoying the warm California sun and flying our kites.

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When we came home and removed the flat iron steak from the SousVide Supreme I sliced off a small piece to try it. It was perfect.  It really was juicy and full of flavor. I placed it out on the grill to give it some grill marks and crunch.

Cooked flat iron steak in Korean BBQ marinade

Cooked flat iron steak in Korean BBQ marinade

Look how nicely cooked it was after cooking in the water at 140 degrees for 9 hours.

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A perfect medium

I did make my own tortillas for this recipe, but you don’t have to go that extra step. Just be sure to find some good quality corn tortillas and revitalize them in a saute pan with a little oil.  Heat the oil on medium-high heat and place a tortilla in for 10 seconds and then flip for another 5 seconds remove and place on some paper towels, patting off the excess oil. Repeat with remaining tortillas.

Later this month, I’m competing with several other BBQ bloggers at http://www.sousvidesupreme.com/sousvidebbq.htm. Check back after June 25 to see what recipe I decide to enter and send me a vote if you want. As a bonus, each person who casts a vote for their fan favorite will be entered to win a $200 gift certificate to www.sousvidesupreme.com.

DISCLAIMER: I was sent the SousVide Supreme to try as part of a blogger outreach program from the company.  The opinions are my own.

Sous-Vide Korean BBQ Tacos

Prep Time: 20 Mins Cooking Time: 8 Hours Total Time: 8 Hours

Ingredients:

  • 2 lb. flat iron steak

Marinade

  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 5 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sriracha sauce
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

Pickled Cabbage

  • 1/2 head of cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon lime juice

Cilantro relish

  • 1 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • juice from 1 lime

Directions:

  1. Combine the marinade ingredients and whisk together. Place the meat in the marinade and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator. In the morning, remove the flat iron steak and place into a vacuum pouch pour in about 2 tablespoons of the marinade into the vacuum pouch. Seal the steak using a vacuum food sealer.
  2. Fill up a SousVide Supreme with water and place the rack and sealed meat into the cooker. Set the heat to 140 degrees for medium doneness and let it cook for 8 hour or up to 24 hours. After 8 hours the meat is ready, the remaining time is just flex time that will keep the meat at the final cooked heat without over cooking.
  3. Meanwhile before the meat is ready to be removed from the SousVide Supreme, make the pickled cabbage and cilantro relish.
  4. For the cabbage, combine all of the ingredients together in a bowl and cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours for the flavors to combine.
  5. The cilantro relish is made by simply combining the ingredients in a bowl and setting aside. This can be made right before taking the meat out.
  6. When the meat is ready, remove from the water and cut the vacuum pouch open. Remove the flat iron steak and place on a hot grill for a few minutes to give it some char. Remove and slice into small cubes for the taco.
  7. On each tortilla, place some meat followed by the cilantro relish and then the cabbage on top. Pour on some hot sauce too if you desire and serve.
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