Thursday, March 02, 2006

something non-serious to end the week

Why not end on a happy note?
No Katrina rehashing, Iraq war stuff, or links to even more problems with those Bush and the Bushites that deserve nothing but to get sent to Gitmo and be tea-bagged and worse for the rest of their lives.

Anyway, unless my memory is wrong (and at my age, it can happen) I don't think I have talked about one of my favorite things to do.
That would be cooking.

I LOVE good food and wine (and booze and beer, but that's another show).
Yea, FoodTV is on all the time around my house. I only wish it were in HD.
Alton Brown is my favorite.

Anyway, I came from a family where meals were not in boxes and dinner was at the table, not in front of the TV. My wife and I cheat on the last one, but that's just because we eat when Law and Order comes on TNT, whatta you supposed to do?
I have carried on the tradition in my house, and I shop for and cook fresh food pretty much 6 nights a week (we go to one of our favorite places on Fridays after work).

Being that we have pretty darn good weather here in San Diego, the Weber grill (not gas) comes into play a lot. Let me tell you, I can make mean chicken halves or quarters on that baby.
Steam some rice, some broccoli, what else do you need other than a glass of wine?
I also like to sear pieces of salmon seasoned with salt, pepper and cayenne, then pour some honey on top, deglaze with some wine, take out the fish and top with the wine/honey sauce.

The other night, I made something I had never done before. Pot Roast. I know, hard to believe, who has not made pot roast, fer crissakes??
I cooked it in the crockpot all day. Damn, that was tasty. In fact, I don't think I have had better, it was that good.
Yes, you can make it, too:

Into your large crockpot turned on to low, throw this:

One 4 pound chuck roast that was cut thick for this purpose. Not rump roast, not rib roast, you want a chuck roast with good marbling.
2 chopped large carrots
4-5 smashed cloves of garlic
2 or 3 stalks of celery chopped.
1 large chopped onion
Handful of button mushrooms quartered.
2 bay leaves
Liberal doses of kosher or sea salt and FRESH GROUND pepper
Tablespoon each dried thyme and oregano

Fill the pot up with as much good beer (that means none of that Bud, Coors or Miller garbage) so that it comes ALMOST to the top of the roast. Let's call it a quarter inch from the top. If you need to make up some height without opening a new beer, use some water. But mostly beer.

Put the lid on and do not touch anything. Don't giggle it, don't peek at it. In fact, plug your nose as you are in your house so you forget the thing is even there.
Leave it like this for a minimum of 8 hours. If you wake up late on Saturday and you think it will be under 8 hours before dinner, use high heat for maybe an hour and a half then turn it down. DO NOT FORGET TO TURN IT DOWN.

Yes, no potatoes in the pot roast.
Boil your one inch diced papas until tender and drain.
Put back in the pot and add salt, pepper, butter and some milk and mash. Mash, not whip.

Make a big salad with lotsa fresh vegatables and this is the greatest thing ever that can easily feed four people.

Duh, some good red wine, of course.
I recommend a bottle of your favorite Zinfandel, Syrah or Cabernet.
Look for these very good values:
Pedroncelli, Kunde, Bogle, Parducci, Cline, Peachy Canyon, Bonny Doon, Rancho Zabaco, and Dry Creek.

There, your weekend just got better.


LA said...

My mouth is watering! What time should I be over?

Hey Mike, when I went to State, I used to eat at this Italian place called Etnas. It's on El Cajon, maybe around 42nd, I can't exactly anymore. I LOVED their pizza. Just curious if you know it and if it's still good.

Your recipe for pot roast sounds delicious!

Mike V. said...

yea, we have had their pizza, it's good.

My favorite in San Diego is still Bronx Pizza over in Hillcrest.

Best NY style I have ever had in CA.

sparky said...

Allright, dammit! Now I'm hungry again!
(Great recipe, Mike -- thanks for sharing!) Howz everthang else wit you?