Friday, March 19, 2010

Salisbury Steak Meatballs

So I was at it again. I was thinking I'd do something like barbecued meatballs from some ground pork I found on sale at the store. I also had a bunch of ground beef, so I though a mix of the two would be good. After cooking the meatballs in a skillet, I tried one before saucing and realized they tasted a lot like Salisbury Steak, but made with real meat. I have always been a sucker for Salisbury Steak, but it just doesn't chew quite like it is made from real meat. This had a nice flavor and I was really chewing something. I basically ended up with meatballs in a brown gravy. It was pretty good served over mashed potatoes.

Salisbury Steak Meatballs

1 lb ground chuck
1 lb ground pork
4 bread heals (saved in the freezer) pulsed in the food processor to make fresh bread crumbs
1 egg
1 larger onion, minced in the food processor (or grated on a box grater)
2 cloves garlic, minced with the onion
1/2 tsp chipolte powder (could use cayenne or leave it out)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp sage

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and form into small (1-inch) meatballs. Brown in a skillet in batches (draining on paper towels after cooking). Once all the meatballs are cooked there should be about 4 Tbsp grease in the pan. Add enough flour to the pan to make a thick grainy-looking paste (about equal parts grease and flour, but I didn't actually measure). Brown the flour for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Mix in 1 can (approx. 2 cups) chicken broth, stirring frequently until slightly thickened. Season with salt and pepper. Add meatballs back to the skillet and simmer until cooked through and the sauce has thickened to your liking (maybe 5 minutes).

We served this with mashed potatoes, but I really should have had some peas too so that it was just like the TV dinners of old. You remember, the ones that were in a foil tray and went in the oven. I must admit, I really liked those. The microwaved ones are just not that good.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Rattlesnake Brownies

No I didn't put snake in the brownies. A rattlesnake is a layered shot with equal parts Kahlua, Creme de Cocoa, and Irish Cream, although I prefer them mixed and chilled (thanks McNugget). This recipe is based on the Boozy Irish Cream Brownies found on Baking Bites. I figured if Bailey's brownies were good, Rattlesnake brownies would be even better. I did change the glaze recipe, though. It was just coming out too thick for me. And the extra booze can't hurt.

Rattlesnake Brownies

1/3 cup butter
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup Rattlesnakes (or just shy of 3 Tbsp. Kahlua, 3 Tbsp. Creme de Cocoa, and 3 Tbsp. Irish Cream)

2 2/3 Tbsp. butter (just us the remainder of the stick from the brownies)
2 Tbsp. Rattlesnakes (or 2 tsp. Kahlua, 2 tsp. Creme de Cocoa, and 2 tsp. Irish Cream)
1 Tbsp. cocoa powder
1 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9x9-inch square baking dish. In a medium saucepan, melt butter. Mix in sugar and cocoa powder until smooth. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Mix in cocoa mixture. Add egg, vanilla, and rattlesnake mix.

Bake for 22-26 minutes, until it tests done with a toothpick.

While the brownie bakes make the glaze. In your saucepan (no need to wash, we're starting with butter, cocoa, and sugar anyway), melt butter. Add cocoa. Off the heat add Rattlesnake mix and powdered sugar. (If it's too thick, thin a bit more with milk or more Rattlesnake mix.) Pour the glaze over the brownies as soon as they come out of the oven. Spread the glaze out to the corners and let cool.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Better than Hamburger Helper

So I had a good bit of sauce left from the Roast with Red Gravy I came up with the other day. I figured I could add some basil and oregano and have an Italian-ish dish. So I browned a pound of hamburger and added about a tsp. each of basil and oregano, then added about 3 cups, or so, of sauce. It didn't really taste Italian. It seemed like something better than Hamburger Helper. I guess real vegetables in the sauce will do that. I served this over a box (13.5 oz.) of cooked whole wheat pasta. The sauce was flavorful enough that no one noticed that the pasta was whole wheat. Even better, all of the boys liked it, which is more than I can say for most pasta dishes.