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Richard in Cincy

Goings on in the summer kitchen...

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Joined: Dec 12, 2005

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Posted to Thread #30416 at 2:09 pm on Jul 28, 2018

Grandkids are in for the summer visit and yours truly has been cranking out grandmother food.

Last week there were huge piles of beef soup bones, turkey necks, oxtails, and marked down beef of all sorts. I bought it all, brought it home, and simmered it for two days to make the mother of all stocks. If it isn't solid at room temp, you didn't do it right.

I pulled some of the steak and roast out part way through to reserve and last night I rolled out egg noodles, cut them into strips, dropped them into some of the simmering broth to cook and added the reserved beef. Nothing tastier than Grandma's homemade beef and noodles. Needless to say, there were no finicky appetites on this one. All gone.

This morning I whipped up Blueberry-Cornmeal-Malted-Vanilla-Buttermilk Pancakes, stacked them with butter, slathered with sorghum and maple syrup, then dusted with powdered sugar, and topped them with more blueberries and strawberries. Still life on the plate for as long as they lasted. I have to say, that was the best damned pancake this mouth had ever had.

I finally got around to brining pork chops, except this is Richard, so, when I was digging out the brining salt, I ran across the bag of home cure (salt, sugar, sodium nitrate & Nitrite--the stuff you put into Leberkäse, cured ham, bacon, bratwurst, etc.). Lo, there was a recipe to use the curing salt as a 24-hour brine. Sold. (I also added fresh rosemary, chopped garlic, nutmeg, and allspice to the brine with lots of black & white pepper). Wow! My 1-inch thick chops (.$89/lb. markdowns in the reduced meat section!) turned into giant smoked pork chop ham steaks on the grill. This was a total revelation. I may never cook a pork chop by any other means after this.

I made this wonderful grilled vegetable salad to accompany meals off the grill. Peel/slice/dice/etc as desired the following grilled vegetables: sweet potatoes, corn (cut off the cob after grilling), red bell pepper, assorted chilies, red onion, and garlic bulbs. Combine lime juice, honey, and Dijon mustard with olive oil to make a vinaigrette. Pour over vegetables. Add cooked black beans, chopped cilantro and green onions. Toss to coat.

This afternoon's tea will feature birthday cake scones, mini-apple cinnamon muffins, miniature berry tartlets, strawberries, bing cherries, smoked ham and Düsseldorf on pumpernickel, and cucumber and cream cheese on whole wheat sandwiches, strawberry jam, clotted cream, etc.

Heaps of fresh basil in the garden and time for another delicious batch of fresh pesto tomorrow.

Just found out all will be in for Christmas this year, so that Kentucky Ham that has been hanging down in the basement for three years will finally be cut down and see its way to glory on the Christmas Eve sideboard. I guess that means Hot Browns for Christmas morning brunch...


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