03/16/17

Chef Perry’s Perfect Pot-Roast

Perfect Pot Roast

I’m all about the comfort food and, let’s face it…it doesn’t get much more comforting that a rich, beefy, unctuous beef pot roast.

Now, you can train a monkey to flop a hunk of cow in a crockpot and douse with with French onion soup mix, but for a next-level roast, prepared with a refined French-style layering of flavors you need to do a little more work, a little more attention to detail…a little more love.

Little things like using two steaks instead of a single, thicker roast, allow a better marriage of beef and veggie flavors. Roasting your mushrooms, and sauteing the shallots and garlic allow them to maintain their own distinct flavors, a little acid cuts the rich fattiness of the meat, and cooking your ingredients at varying times allows for a consistent texture, nothing too tough and nothing too mushy. Perfection isn’t easy, but it’s so, so worth it.

And, let’s face it…a cow died for your dinner, you owe him that.

Here’s what I’m talking about…

Chef P’s Pot Roast

1 teaspoon olive oil
2 tsp bacon drippings
2 boneless chuck roast steaks, trimmed (3-pounds total)
2 Tbsp coarse sea salt
2 Tbsp freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp porcini mushroom powder
2 cups coarsely chopped shallots
8 garlic cloves
3 cup beef stock
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 cups peeled baby carrots
12 oz white mushrooms, halved and roasted
2 pounds russet potatoes, unpeeled and cut in half
1/4 cup soft butter + 1/4 cup flour
Sea salt to taste
Fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped

Roast your mushrooms and set aside.

Heat olive oil and bacon drippings in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle steaks with salt, pepper, and porcini powder, dredge in flour.

Perfect Pot Roast recipe
Add shallots and garlic cloves to the skillet; sauté 8 minutes or well browned and crusted, remove solids, and set aside. Add steaks to pan; cook 5 minutes, turning to brown on both sides. Remove meat from pan.

Perfect Pot Roast recipe
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Return one browned steak to slow cooker. Layer onions and garlic, then cut potatoes over the top. Dust with more mushroom powder, and top with second steak.

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Add beef broth, vinegar, Worcestershire, and bay leaf to pan; bring to a simmer. Cover slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours.

Perfect Pot Roast recipe
Carefully remove potatoes and set aside. Add the carrots and roasted mushrooms. Cover and cook 2 more hours. Remove bay leaf from cooker, discard.

Defatting beef stock
Pour off juice and defat, heat the resulting broth in a medium saucepan to simmer. Combine flour and butter to make a smooth paste.

Thickening with butter and flour

Whisk the mixture vigorously into the simmering broth until thickened. Taste for seasonings, adding salt and pepper, vinegar or Worcestershire sauce as desired.

adding butter to stock

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Shred meat with 2 forks, return to slow-cooker along with broth and all veggies. Stir and allow to warm through. Garnish with cilantro leaves, sprinkle with coarse black pepper, smoked paprika, and serve with hot dinner rolls.

BTW, like most roasted meals, this dish impoves with age. It’s better the next day, it’s divine on day three.

Perfect Pot Roast

01/11/17

Skillet Seared Rib Steak Dinner

Skillet seared rib steaks with spinach

A rib steak is a beef steak sliced from the rib primal of a beef animal, with rib bone attached. In the United States, the term rib-eye steak is used for a rib steak with the bone removed; however in some areas, and outside the U.S., the terms are often used interchangeably.

The term “cowboy ribeye” or “cowboy cut” is often used in American restaurants for a bone-in rib eye. The rib eye or “ribeye” was originally, as the name implies, the center best portion of the rib steak, without the bone. In Australia, “ribeye” is used when this cut is served with the bone in. With the bone removed, it is called “Scotch fillet”.

rib steaks

It is both flavorful and tender, coming from the lightly worked upper rib cage area. Its marbling of fat makes it very good for fast and hot cooking.

First and of foremost importance to searing the perfect skillet steak is the skillet.

You need a large, well-seasoned, cast iron skillet (12-16 inch, a similar sized dutch oven will work in a pinch). If you don’t have a cast iron skillet, go buy one. If you’re not willing to buy one, stop reading now, you can’t make this recipe.


Perfect Skillet-Seared Rib Steak

Perfect Skillet-Seared Rib Steak Dinner
2 bone-in rib steaks, at least 1 1/2-inches thick, about 1 pound each
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons grape-seed oil
1/2 cup butter
8-10 cloves of whole peeled garlic
1/2 cup white onion, chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 cup dry Sherry

Pre-heat oven to 300F.


Perfect Skillet-Seared Rib Steak

Pat steaks dry with paper towels. Allow to rest at room temperature for at least 40 minutes and up to 2 hours.

Heat oil in a large cast iron skillet over high heat until heavily smoking. Season steaks liberally with salt and pepper, add steaks, onions, and garlic to the skillet and cook for 3-5 minutes per side, flipping just once.

Perfect Skillet-Seared Rib Steak

Remove steaks to a pre-warmed baking dish and place in preheated oven. Leave onions and garlic in the skillet, add parsley.

Reduce the heat under the pan to medium, and let cool slightly (add a little more oil if necessary).

Sauteing garlic and onion

Add sherry and butter and saute, stirring and scarping up any browned bits left from the meat, simmer until liquid is reduced by half. Replace steaks to the skillet and flip to coat evenly.

Sauteing garlic and onion

MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

Move steaks and sauce to a warm baking dish and place in the oven to finish (do NOT wipe the skillet clean!)

Cook to an internal temp of 130F. Remove steaks from oven and spoon with pan sauce. Tent loosely with foil. Allow to rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Seared rib steak

Meanwhile, cook spinach in skillet (see below.)

Baked sweet potatoes with chili butter

Baked Chili Sweet Potatoes
(Cook before the steaks, finish right before serving)

4 medium swet potatoes
2 tsp. Mexican chili powder
4 Tbs. butter
Salt & pepper to taste

Baked sweet potatoes

Cook
Preheat oven to 400°F.

With a sharp knife, slash sweet potato skin 4-5 times.

Place in pre-heated oven and bake until tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Baked sweet potatoes

Finish
Slice each potato open, lengthwise, and squeeze gently from the ends to create a pocket.

Using a fork, fluff and mix up the internal part of the potatoes with salt & pepper.

Baked sweet potatoes with chili butter

Place 1 Tbs. butter into each pocket, and sprinkle with chili powder. Set aside and allow butter to melt before serving.  

Sauteed spinach with lemon and almonds

Sauteed Fresh Spinach
2 Tb. butter
4 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
2lbs fresh spinach leaves, washed and dried
1 fresh lemon, juiced
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted

THIS is the reason (and the only reason) we didn’t finish our steaks in the skillet.

Over medium heat, add butter and garlic, cooking briefly, then add all spinach to the skillet and toss frequently until starting to reduce.

Sprinkle all with fresh lemon juice, toss again, sprinkle with almonds and serve.

Skillet Rib Steaks with garlic and onions

Plate all, spoon additional pan sauce over the steaks, and serve.

Enjoy!

Chef Perry

01/10/17

Perfect Chicken Piccata

Perfect Chicken Piccata recipe

At-risk kids cooking“Piccata” is a method of preparing food: meat is floured, sautéed and served in a sauce. The dish originated in Italy using veal (veal piccata). In the United States, the most well-known variant is chicken piccata.

This is one of my all-time favorite dishes, and often the “finals” recipe for our MY KITCHEN classes.

It’s quick, delicious, and easy to fix, and we always get the same response from our students… “I can’t believe I cooked that!”

Enjoy!

Chef Perry

Perfect Chicken Piccata
Serves 4

PREP 10 mins.
COOK 15 mins.
READY IN 25 mins.

2 boneless chicken breasts or 8 tenders
1 cup AP flour
salt and ground black pepper
cayenne pepper, to taste
2 Tbs olive oil
2 Tbs capers
1 cup dry white wine (I like pinot gris)
1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup homemade chicken stock
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley
1 lb fettuccine or spaghetti pasta

Mise en Place

Drain capers, squeeze lemon, cut butter into 1/4-inch slices, chop parsley

Prepare the Dish

Place chicken breasts into a gallon zip bag and pound to about 1/2-inch thick.

flattening chicken breasts in a Ziploc

Season both sides of chicken breasts with cayenne, salt, and black pepper; dredge lightly in flour and shake off any excess.

Pan Seared Chicken Breasts
MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

Heat olive oil in a SS skillet over medium-high heat. Place chicken in the pan, reduce heat to medium, and cook until browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side; remove to a plate.

Meanwhile, cook your pasta.

Add capers to the pan in reserved oil, smashing them lightly to release brine, until warmed though, about 30 seconds.  Pour wine into skillet to deglaze (see my video on deglazing), scraping any browned bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spatula. Cook until reduced by half, about 2 minutes.

Deglazing a pan

Stir lemon juice, stock, and butter into the reduced wine mixture; cook and stir continuously to form a thick sauce, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low, add adente pasta (with a little pasta water) and parsley, stir.

Adding pasta to pan

Return chicken breasts to the pan cook until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve chicken over pasta, with additional sauce spooned over the top.

 

 

11/17/16

Chef P’s Tuna Casserole

Sometimes you just get the weirdest cravings…I probably haven’t had tuna casserole in 30 years, but today, out of the blue, I just had to have some. I looked up Mom’s old recipe (ie: The Betty Crocker Cookbook) made a few upgrades, and whipping up a VERY tasty one-pan dinner.

Very nice on a cold, rainy night!

Here you go,  Joella!

The Best Tuna Casserole

Chef P’s Tuna Casserole

1 (12 ounce) package egg noodles
1/4 cup sweet onion, chopped
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (I like Cabot’s), divided
1 cup shredded Grueyre cheese
2 cups frozen sweet green peas
1 lb home-canned tuna (Or, if you must, 3 (6oz) cans, drained)
12 oz. homemade cream of mushroom soup, reduced (it’s super easy, here’s the first step) or 2 cans condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 cup unseasoned breadcrumbs, or, for hardcore comfort-foodiness, crushed Ritz Crackers.
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. sweet paprika
2 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).

Cook pasta in a large pot of salted water for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente; drain.

In a small bowl, toss breadcrumbs, half of each cheese, chili powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and paprika. (You can take this up a notch, btw, if you’re making your own mushroom soup, roast some peeled fresh garlic along with the ‘shrooms. Add these into the next step.)

    
Thoroughly mix cooked noodles, onion, remaining cheese, peas, tuna, and soup. Transfer to a 9×13 inch baking dish, and top with breadcrumb/cheese mixture.

The Best Tuna Casserole
MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until breadcrumbs are golden brown.

A casserole is basically just a very thick stew, and like a stew, it gets better with a little time. I like to make mine the day before, or let it rest at least an hour before serving. For the day before preparation, let the cooked casserole cool to room temp before you wrap it that. This keeps the breadcrumbs from getting mushy from condensation.

Serve with a fresh green salad, and enjoy!

~ Chef Perry

 

11/4/16

What is a MY KITCHEN “SupperClub” Party?

MY KITCHEN SupperClub

One method of getting the word out for our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program, is to throw “SupperClub Parties” with families, friends, and supporters of our non-profit charity.

It’s all about fun, highlighting the things that the MK chefs do best: teaching hands-on cooking skills, and serving amazing food!

MY KITCHEN SupperClub

Prepping kale slaw for our “Farmers Market” SupperClub

 

MY KITCHEN SupperClub

Fun, Food, & Friends!

How it works:

Each host invites 10-15 friends over to their house, and we share a little bit about what we do, give some hands-on cooking demos of several recipes that follow a specific theme chosen by the host, maybe drink a little wine (at the host’s discretion), and then enjoy the fruits of our labors with a multi-course tapas-style meal of the dishes we’ve just learned to prepare.

Attendees are welcome to participate in the prep and cooking, or not, no pressure.

It’s a casual, low-stress, lots-of-laughs night with friends and family, that helps us help kids…

How’s THAT for a win-win?

See you there!

Chef Perry
MY KITCHEN Outreach Program
www.joinmykitchen.com

PS – Here are a couple of sample themes:

Kale Slaw

Theme: Farmer’s Market

Synopsis: Three simple vegetable dishes that highlight seasonally fresh produce

Meal: Copper Pennies, Kale Slaw, Italian Green Beans

 Pork Shoulders in Smoker

Theme: Creating Your Signature BBQ Sauce

Synopsis: Attendees will learn the basic elements of a BBQ sauce, then create their own from a wide variety of ingredients.

Meal: Pulled Pork Sliders, Cilantro-Sesame Slaw

Mushroom Pan Sauce

Theme: Perfect Pan Sauces

Synopsis: Instruction on three of the basic “Mother Sauces” of French cooking: Mornay (cheese), Tomato, and Mushroom Beurre Blanc.

Meal: Chicken Marsala, Pasta Rustica, Vegetable Trio with Mornay

  • If you would like to consider hosting your own SupperClub, and would like a full list of available themes, please contact us at mykitchenoutreach@gmail.com; Subject line: “SupperClub”

MY KITCHEN SupperClub

The Fine Print

Host pays for the cost of ingredients and materials only. All shopping, prep, delivery, and service are provided at no additional fee by the MY KITCHEN Program. Travel expenses outside of the Portland/Metro area will be considered a material expense. An invoice for food/material costs will be provided by MY KITCHEN. Payment in full must be received at least 1 week prior to the event date. Due to shopping requirements, cancellations within the last 72 hours will be non-refundable.

Host will provide space for a MY KITCHEN information and donation table (which we provide), as well as 10-15 minutes for our chefs to present the outreach to guests (typically just prior to the class).

Additional sides, beverages, and desserts may be added to the base menu for an additional fee. MY KITCHEN is not licensed to provide or serve alcohol, but you are certainly welcome to do so yourselves. Plating and serving-ware are provided by the host, or by us for an additional fee.

10 Guest minimum.*

Per our “Personal Chef” status, the States of Oregon/Washington require that there must be a residential kitchen onsite, and that we use that facility to prepare food.

Gratuities are not included in ingredient/materials pricing, nor required, but if you love the class (and you will) we never turn down a tip! All gratuities will be considered a donation to the MY KITCHEN Outreach Program, and used soley for the outreach. Tax-deductible receipts for tips and donations are can be provided.

*Obviously, our goal in these SupperClubs is to raise funds and support for the MY KITCHEN Program. Please keep this is mind when inviting attendees to your event, and consider those with the ability, means, and desire to partner with charities like ours to help mentor kids and feed the hungry.

Thank you for helping us help kids!


MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

 

11/2/16

Blackened Tilapia Sandwich with Simple Tangy Coleslaw

Blackened Tilapia Sandwich

Blackened Tilapia Sandwich with Cilantro-Lime Mayonnaise & Simple Tangy Coleslaw


 

Blackened Tilapia Sandwich

  • 2 tbsp. sweet paprika 1 tbsp. ground thyme
  • 1 tsp. onion powder 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. salt 1/4 tsp. ground red pepper
  • 2 (6-oz. ea.) tilapia fillets 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Kaiser buns 1/4 cup mango salsa
  • 1/2 avocado

Cilantro-Lime Mayonnaise

  • 2 tbsp. mayonnaise 1 sprig cilantro
  • 1/2 lime

Mise en Place:

In a shallow dish, combine paprika, thyme, onion powder, garlic powder, salt & red pepper. Remove skin & pit from avocado and slice the flesh. Chop the cilantro. Make the Cilantro-Lime Mayonnaise: Juice the lime. In a small bowl combine, mayonnaise, cilantro, and lime juice. Cover and chill. Butter & toast the buns.

Preparation:

Brush fish with oil, and sprinkle with seasoning mixture.

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Cook fish, in batches if necessary, 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Spread Cilantro-Lime Mayonnaise on the cut side of buns. Place blackened fish on bottom half of bun, add slices of avocado, top with mango salsa, and cover with top half of bun.

 

Simple Tangy Coleslaw

  • 1/2 lb. green cabbage
  • 1 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. toasted sesame seeds

Heat vinegar and sugar until sugar is dissolved, allow to cool.

Shred cabbage.

Toss dressing with cabbage, sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds, and serve immediately.

MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

 

10/31/16

Next Level Grilled Cheese Tip

Perfect Grilled Cheese

Grilled cheese and tomato soup…is there anything better on a rainy Autumn afternoon? I think not!

Here’s a quick tip to bring your good old-fashioned grilled cheese up a notch, by adding another level of cheesy goodness and texture…

Step One: Make your grilled cheese the old fashioned way (white or whole wheat bread, melted butter in a medium-hot pan NOT on the bread, extra sharp cheddar cheese). I threw in a couple of slices of deli ham, but that’s optional.

Ultimate Grilled Cheese

Step Two: Once you get the first side a perfect golden-brown, flip, and quickly sprinkle a little freshly grated cheddar, Asiago, or Romano cheese over the still-hot surface, and cover.

FullSizeRender3

Step Three: Uncover when the bottom side is done and the grated cheese on top has softened or melted.

Step Four: Flip again and let grill until the grated cheese has cooked to a golden, crunchy perfection.

Cut and serve immediately, preferably with a hot bowl of tomato-basil soup!

Next Level Grilled Cheese

MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

 

 

10/17/16

This week’s dinner recipes are up!

Hello friends and foodies!

Our free weekly dinnerplans have posted…and some of my favorites are on the menu!        

This week we focus on Ground Beef (menu 1) and Whole Chicken (menu 2).

Here are my favorites from each…    

Chef Perry’s Picks of the Week:

Week 37 Free Dinner Plans

Click here for this week’s Dinner Plans!

Password: SimplySmart




MY KITCHEN CookbookDid you know…that every one of our students receive, as their graduation gift, their own free copy of the MY KITCHEN Cookbook, which contains all of the lessons and recipes they’ve learned over the last four weeks, as well as many more using the same basic techniques.

Speaking of which…

Have you picked up YOUR copies?

100% of sales goes to support MY KITCHEN  classes, and for each copy you buy, you’re providing two free copies for future students!

Pick up your copies (they make great Christmas presents for kids, teens, or anyone who wants to learn their way around the kitchen) at our secure sales page.

New classes start soon, can’t wait!

Chef Perry
MY KITCHEN Outreach Program

Please feel free to share this post with your friends and family. If they would like to receive their own free weekly meal plans and newsletters, they can sign up by clicking right here!

09/29/16
Ground Lamb Gyro Gorditas

Gyros vs. Schawarma


My old pal Megan, freshly returned from a recent European jaunt, asks:

“Two things, on searching for shawarma here in Portland, I found a restaurant that sold shawarma but in parentheses labeled it gyros. Are they the same thing? And do you know where I can get some good shawarma?”

(BTW – your timing is perfect, Megan, as we’ve just posted not one, but TWO gyros recipes:

Ground Lamb Gyro Gorditas, and Easy Skillet Gyros with Tzatziki Sauce

Ground Lamb Gyro Gorditas

Meg,

Both were derived in the 18th or 19th century from the Turkish Doner Kebab. Doner (rotating) and Kebab (grilled meat.)

When it was introduced to Greece, they named it “gyros,” Greek for “turn.” When it arrived in the Middle East, it was translated into the Arabic word for turning, “shawarma.”

In Greece the meat is typically pork, lamb, or beef, while the Middle Eastern version, not surprisingly, is never pork, but can be lamb, beef or chicken. In America, the meat is often a combination of beef & lamb.

The three major differences:

1. The Flavors

Gyros will have a more “Mediterranean” selection of herbs (oregano, marjoram, thyme, rosemary), while shawarma, not surprisingly, leans towards the “middle eastern” spice wheel (cardamom, allspice, cinnamon, cloves, coriander seed, turmeric.)

Either may have cumin, or pepper, and they’ll both will certainly have garlic.

MY KITCHEN Outreach ProgramBy the way, if you’re enjoying this recipe, please subscribe to our free newsletter! We’ll send seven amazing dinner recipes and a shopping list to your inbox each Friday.

Plus, you’ll be helping us teach nutrition, shopping, and hands-on cooking classes to at-risk kids, in our MY KITCHEN Outreach Program.

 2. The Meat

Besides the spices, is the form of meat. The meat for a gyro is a ground blend, usually some combination of lamb and beef, formed into a loaf before roasted on a spit. The shawarma meat cone is made from packed-down slices of marinated meat—often chicken, sometimes lamb, and occasionally even goat.

3. Toppings

Lastly, gyros are typically topped with onion, tomato, and tzatziki—a cold sauce made of strained yogurt, cucumbers, garlic, salt, olive oil. Schawarma, on the other hand, has a more diverse salad-bar,including tahini, tabbouleh, fattoush, cucumber, and hummus…but no tzatziki.

I love them both!

As for my favorite spot, that’s easy, my #1 for all Middle Eastern foods is Wilsonville’s Dar Essalam Moroccan Restaurant. (The apricot lamb-shank tagine is to die for, as well!)

Chef Perry
joinmykitchen.com