When you mix an athlete, a nerd, beer, and good ingredients this is what you get.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Weekend

Hey everyone it's Katie again :) ! <3 HeArTz~*~*

Just kidding. Don't worry. I'm back.

This weekend we got hungry so we decided to make some food. With all of the Halloween craziness going on we decided to be cliche and work some pumpkin into the meal. Katie was in the mood for risotto so we decided to go with a pumpkin risotto after watching someone attempt one on "The Next Iron Chef."

Our recipe went something like this:

-Chop half an onion. Caramelize it.
-Deglaze with a half cup of white wine.
-Add a cup or so of Arborio rice. 
-Stir constantly til most of the liquid is absorbed.
-Add 3/4 of a cup of (warmed) chicken stock, stirring constantly until the liquid has been absorbed.
-Repeat the last step about 7 times or until the rice is tender (taste it to check, it will be about 30 min but never trust the clock with rice or pasta)
-Once the rice is ready, add 3/4 of a cup of pumpkin along with some pie spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, whatever you have around)
-Taste it. It should be slightly sweet, if the onions aren't carrying enough sweetness at this point, add some brown sugar or molasses.
-Add some goat cheese to mellow the sweetness and add a creamy texture to the dish.

This one was a winner that we will definitely revisit. If we wanted to be really cute we could do it for a holiday and serve it in a hollowed out pumpkin but we were hungry and just devoured it. (possible leftover use, pumpkin arancini???)

The steaks looked good enough to eat raw...

For our inner carnivores we made pinwheel steaks which neither of us had ever made. It's kind of like we dressed the steaks up as this for Halloween. Except not. They were still mesmerizing for their own reasons, though (steak, garlic and cheese combined tend to have that effect on me). These were easy so I won't spell out steps like I did with the rice. Just tenderize a flank steak, hit it with salt and pepper, spread some boursin in a thin, even layer, roll up, cut into servings, roast at 425 for 10 minutes on each side. Garlic, cheese, herbs, steak. Yum.

The finished plate: Pinwheel Steak with Boursin, Pumpkin Risotto with Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese, Pan Roasted Carrots with Garlic.

To round out the plate we pan roasted some baby carrots with one smashed clove of garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.

I took a break from my cheap beer and drank a couple cocktails with this one. It was Katie's play on a French 75:
2 parts Gin
1 part St. Germain (this stuff is awesome)
some lemon juice
shaken over ice, topped with pink champagne.

Yes, I know guys, it was pink but it was still
an ass-kicker. I drank plenty Buds later in the night to wash down the pink, anyway

The next morning we had Bloody Marys to wash away the hangover. It's pretty wonderful to be with a girl who knows her way around a kitchen and a bar (and who can write, despite my cheap shot at the top of the post).

One of us will be back on the blog soon, we might be throwing a pizza party for my (3 year old) niece this weekend if my sister and brother in law can get out of work and come to Boston. If it happens, you'll see it on here. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Market Monday

Hi, it's Katie. I've been invited to guest post on the blog. This is a pretty big deal so I'm going to litter this post with smiley faces, hearts and hyperbole. Kidding? We'll see.

So, compared to Rotio I'm a liberal Cambridge hippie. But compared to liberal Cambridge hippies I'm somewhat conservative. I preface this post with this statement because 1) we're going all sustainable with this post and 2) it was Rotio's idea. No lie. Between the Octoberfest in Harvard Square last weekend and taking advantage of a day off and hitting up the neighborhood farmers' market on Columbus Day, we scored some local goods and produce that were destined to be integrated in some solid meals. It just so happened that they all came to life in the same day :)

Rotio thought it would be a good idea to start our fall holiday with some pumpkin french toast. Umm, genius. We started with some local thick cut (1 inch) rustic bread. (If you've been making french toast with anything other than this, you're missing out.) I threw 7 (local) eggs in a big bowl with 1/2 cup of pumpkin butter, 1/2 cup of local milk, and 1/4 cup of Cambridge water and beat the hell out of it. I soaked 2 slices of bread in the egg mix until completely saturated [the trick to good French toast is full saturation--poke holes in the bread with a fork so it soaks up more of the egg mix. When you transfer to the skillet, the bread should be so heavy you've worried about the crust falling off!] I threw those slices on the skillet for 3 minutes on each side--just enough to be golden brown but no too crispy. Topped them with a pad of butter, powdered sugar and Rotio threw together some cinnamon whipped cream (heavy cream, powdered sugar, cinnamon). It held an amazing balance of savory & sweet. Since it was after 2pm, we figured the best accompaniment was beer. Oh, and we had bacon. Happy Columbus Day, right?

After 5 hours of laundry, bathroom cleaning and vacuuming on my part (wait, this is a food blog, gross) and studying on Rotio's part, it was time for dinner. We had acquired Brussels sprouts and the star of the meal, Mushroom and Truffle Oil Ravioli, from the farmers' market. We really didn't do much for this meal but it was just too yummy not to blog it. The ravioli just screamed for an alfredo sauce so that's what Rotio concocted. The Brussels sprouts came on the vine, so they were really small--perfect for a stovetop sautee. Threw some olive oil, garlic cloves, S+P in a frypan and let those babies get bright green with some char all over--probably 15 minutes from raw to perfect.

Plated the ravioli, alfredo, Brussels. Truffle oil on anything is amazing, but I think our accompaniment was perfect. Threw some MNF on and ate without speaking, except for "mmmm, yeah. that's amazing." I don't even remember who was playing. That's a good sign with us. :)

And this brings us to our final course, which was actually prepared in a vacuum break.

Apple pie. I'll keep it just as simple as it is. 5 local Cortland apples, pealed and layered in the pan. sprinkle 1 T sugar, 1 T cinnamon over the apples. In a separate bowl mix: 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 egg, 1 1/2 sticks unsalted melted butter, 1/2 cup crushed pecans. Pour mix over apples. Bake for 40-45 min at 350. Seriously, it's that simple: "This is seriously the best apple pie I've ever tasted." -Anthony Rotio

1492, Thankyou. I'm full. <3 :) The best ever.