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Thursday, February 9, 2012

Chorizo & Egg


 whats4dinnerdad.com sneak preview

One of the website launch recipes.. This was made this evening.. Delicious.. My wife and I are days away from the birth of our second (my first) son, Tommy! The website is coming along nicely and launch is near.. Adjustment time will be needed, but I think I can help offset that a bit.. I'm going to post some quick 30 minute, make them the night before if you need to type of series.. Healthy, but delicious and filling for all..  I've posted a sneak peek of whats4dinnerdad.com above as well ;) Till then, happy eating!

~Chef Dad(dy to be!) 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Chicken Cacciatore over Homemade Fettuccine

Who doesn't love a good Italian dish?
Today is a simple one, and it's not mine so I'd like to share it with you..

I have a 1978 Edition of Better Homes and Gardens, "Complete Step-by-Step Cook Book"

This is pre-packet-ish and mix with fake cheese days for them, ya know... the good stuff.. 



If you ever get a chance, pick up a copy (try your local bookstore / discount books)
I'm just going to post the pictures and directions below, give it a try and experiment with it!!  

I have made this 4 times in the last couple of weeks and it just keeps getting better and better... saute some sun-dried tomatoes and blitz them in for an amazing change-up.. delicious always..
Also: I use about 1/2 the oil and cook at a medium-high heat until the 30 min reduction.. 
Finish with a knob of butter while continuously stirring before stirring to add a little thickness and nutty body to the sauce... works wonders..  My noodles are just standard egg noodles ran through a little pasta press my wife has gotten for me.. Difficult to keep in place, but is amazing once it's in place.. If you don't have one, check them out!  Homemade pasta is worlds better tasting and you control what goes into it..  

(1 1/2 cups of flour, 2 eggs, salt, oil, mix.. let sit in fridge for 1hr min or 10 min in freezer if in a rush, roll thin or use pasta press, cut into desired pasta)
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FIN..  ENJOY Everyone!!!  If anyone has any questions, please leave a comment on the blog!!  Website is still being worked on and is nearly complete!! I'm excited to show everyone!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Fondant Potatoes

Fondant Potatoes! 
(Potatoes cooked in sauce/stock)

-------------- Short Update ----------------


Thomas Michael Sullivan, Due in February =)

Sorry for the delays on posts (always my excuse eh? lol)

The lil one above has kept me very busy, his room is going to be started this week! So excited!
Two boys... better learn some hearty, healthy meals for my family.. but, what about TASTE.. 

I learned infusion of flavors via youtube videos by Chef Gordon Ramsay today, and I'd like to share not only that video, but a little bit of advice, that you might not have seen in the video..

First, the video... Please watch it, write down and prep what you need.. I also used half of a very small onion with my potatoes.. Cooked till clear, then removed until right before the potatoes went into the oven..


Drooling yet?? :)

Ok, first things first... If you don't live somewhere where the metric system is used.. 200deg C = around 400deg F (it's what I used, 375 would probably be acceptable, but you might loose that crispy top)

Pre-heat to 400F/200C
Season half "bottoms" (flat-side) Salt & Pepper
I do NOT use as much oil as Ramsay, about half that much, as I was using a saute pan..

(Note: please make sure the pan you are using is oven safe and NEVER grab a pan from the oven without HAND PROTECTION)

Add the butter, and a couple of cloves of garlic, really brings out the flavor.. If I had rosemary, I'd have put it in right NOW :)

Season the round edges of the potato!!

Cook the potatoes, look for them to start getting brown on the edges, give it 60 seconds past that, flip

THEN ADD THE HERBS (If you add it before then, you chance burn from using less oil)

Put them in the center, they will crackle, pop and release their smells and flavor..Delicious!

The rest is simple.. add fresh stock 
(I made some from our chicken bones last night, froze them overnight, made the stock all day)

Ok, let's be real, most of you WON'T make the stock.. get a low sodium box or canned if you have to, but get it BOILING first.. it's important to build the sauce properly 

(the video he brings his up to temp in the pan, this is fine if you forget, but your sauce may break)

Add the stock, just below the potatoes..  I added another few sprigs of thyme and some dried basil from the garden..  INTO THE OVEN YOU GOOOo..

15 minutes.. no more, no less.. don't open it.. don't touch it... again.. 
Get hand protection and have it on at all times... my previously burnt hands beg of you not to make the same mistake they did with a previous dish and grab it.. you won't like it, I promise..

Take the potatoes out, serve... 
Added bonus:

Add balsamic vinegar to the VERY HOT pan, put it on HIGH HEAT, get it going good before you add the vinegar (1 tsp) 

Reduce, add 1/2 cup of RED or WHITE wine (I used red.. paired VERY well)

Reduce until thick, serve with dinner... 

I made two eye of the round steaks using the same method as the potatoes (350 for 1 1/2hrs after sear and de-glaze with red wine... it's fall apart and delicious)

Enjoy everyone!! Much easier than it may seem, and it's SOO GOOD!!

Below is the meal from tonight, I also made a pan sauce with pan drippings, corn starch and a little milk, add red wine after the first reduction.. 


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Spotify!

Just wanted to share this with everyone!

Follow me on Spotify

THANKS!!!  NEW MUSIC 10.10.11!!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

When in doubt....

... Look to the people in your life that support you.

Today, I posted on the Facebook group, 
"I have two chicken breasts, lemon, rice or potato.. Do not want to make Indian or Chinese tonight, not wanting to bake either... Help the Chef?"

Black Pepper Sticky Lemon Chicken over Spanish Rice

This is what became of that following conversation.

I just wanted to dedicate this post to the ladies that shared their ideas in that discussion today.. THANK YOU, I really appreciated it.. Whole thing took 45 minutes from prep to plate

Amy, Heather, Lisa, Allison and Ana, I give you:

Black Pepper Sticky Lemon Chicken over Spanish Rice

This is what I used and what I had around tonight..

1 Lemon
2 Chicken Breasts, skinned and cubed
Olive oil
1 cup of rice (long grain is what we had tonight)
1 tsp Sugar
1 tbsp Flour
1 Small Red Pepper
Fresh Sage
German Thyme
Purple Basil
Lemon Basil
Garlic
1/4 onion
Salt
Pepper
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp red chili powder
1 tomato
5-6 very small (young) potatoes
---------------
prep everything, pepper should have membrane and seeds removed. 

--POTATOES--

Boil the potatoes, start them in cold water.. yes cold water.. salt that water.. add about 1tsp of butter if you wish and bring to a boil for 1-2 minutes on a high boil.. drain but SAVING the now vegetable stock you've made.. you'll use it later on.. 

--RICE--
Dice very small
add to rice with sugar, pinch of salt.. I used a little chili powder in the rice liquid which also consisted of 1/2 of my first Pale Ale I've brewed from a kit using a few of my pops techniques as well.. Pic below



(I make rice like risotto most of the time, fry with onion--deglaze w/stock and keep adding liquid, rapidly stirring until smooth gravy-like sauce is had.. but that's a whole nother post!)


After the rice is about 1/2 cooked, start cooking the

--CHICKEN--
We use split breasts.. low cost, and you get a two each of a breast and tenderloin.. $4.35

Wait to slice the lemon until the end and have a strainer or lemon press close by.

I add all the herbs in whole, you do as you choose.. I just pluck out the bigger pieces.. I find it brings a much more intense flavor with the stalks.. 

--------------------------
First, head a good sized skillet on high heat.. 
Get the pan good and hot, and if you don't have al-clad or something that won't char on contact, use a non-stick but WATCH YOUR TEMP.. Those pans release some nasty fumes sometimes and none of us want that.. 

Add olive oil to the pan, add the VERY WELL DRAINED AND DRIED potatoes to the oil

season with salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder and paprika

Cook for about 3 - 5 minutes depending on heat and remove from oil, saving oil in the pan, they will be a little oily I know, but it will make sense here in a sec..

Add Chicken to that same pan, add a little more oil if you must to prevent burning, but not too much as you are then boiling in oil.. after chicken has left the pink stage and is going to white.. (not too long after as it will still cook and finish after)

Add Flour, mix to form a nice RUE and add the potatoes back in..

The potatoes now are giving the rest of the oil to the rue, making a delicious paste.. 

add a little, and I mean a little pinch of salt here before adding liquid.. stir well and cook the chicken/potato rue for another 1 - 2 minutes, making sure not to burn it.. adjust flame accordingly

ADD YOUR POTATO STOCK NOW -- or around 1 1/2 cups (it's what I had)

ADD LEMON SLICES ON TOP.. THICK, SAVE/DISCARD SEEDS and SAVE last 1/4 of lemon for juice

Season with a light peppering again, add whole (or chopped) greens and COVER for 15 minutes

Stir and check sauce at least once.. if you need to add more liquid, the stock or water is fine, just a little though

turn off heat, let it sit for 1-2 minutes uncovered, remove lemons, squeeze remaining lemon in

Serve with fresh diced tomatoes and ENJOY!!!

~ Chef Dad ~

<3 Thank you again, ya'll rock!! <3

Monday, July 25, 2011

Pork Chop Teriyaki w/White Sauce Pasta

Pork Chop Teriyaki with White Sauce Pasta
--------------------------------

Pasta is steamed broccoli w/a simple white-sauce angel hair pasta

You will need
------------
Pork Loin cut into 1/2 in thick steaks 
^^^ This is how you save $$ ^^^
(14-16 steaks, freeze what you don't use)
Flour
Salt & Pepper
Apple Cider Vinegar
Whole Garlic Clove Cracked
Olive Oil
Brown Sugar
Soy Sauce
Fresh Chicken Stock (1 1/2 cup total) (if boxed, low-sodium a must)
Celery Seed
Fennel Seed
Ginger Powder
---

MARINADE THE PORK IN ALL THE BELOW INGREDIENTS FOR AT LEAST 1 HOUR

In a medium-heat saucepan:
Apple Cider Vinegar (1tsp)
Brown Sugar (1/3 cup)
Soy Sauce (2 tbsp)
Chicken Stock (1/2 cup)
Olive Oil (1 tbsp)

You will be making your own BBQ SAUCE... it can go from perfect to burnt in just a matter of moments
Pay attention to it..  but, BEFORE you put it on MEDIUM-HEAT (very important)

MARINADE THE PORK IN ALL THE ABOVE INGREDIENTS FOR AT LEAST 1 HOUR

Prepare the sauce, while you are cooking the pork
It will finish before the pork.. that is good :)
Keep stirring until it becomes like runny pancake syrup (as if it were heated)
Take off heat, transfer to new container, and let sit until needed
WASH THAT PAN NOW OR YOU WILL REGRET IT..  hot hot soapy water

-------------------------------------
POUND PORK TO 1/4" STEAKS WITH TOOTHED-TENDERIZER
Much like pork-cutlets.. wait.. EXACTLY that! ;) 

Add all remaining dry ingredients to flour
---
Flour
Salt & Pepper
Celery Seed
Fennel Seed (ground to powder, use fresh)
Ginger Powder
---

NORMALLY, you would use an egg-wash or milk.. NOT HERE --  We've used a thick marinade and you should still have LOTS on there.. pour the excess into the ABOVE MEDIUM HEAT PAN and start making your BBQ, then continue on below..

Coat each pounded pork thoroughly with the flour mixture

Add a little olive oil to the pan, get it nice an hot and crack the garlic clove, remove the skin and cut off the tough end.. put the whole clove in the oil to season

Put 3-5 Cutlets in pan in a fan pattern, don't over-crowd, use two pans if you have to

Brown each side for 3-5 minutes until golden brown

At this point I added fresh Thyme, Green Basil and Royal Purple Basil to the pan over the cutlets for flavor

Leave chops in there, and slowly pour 1/2 cup of the remaining CHICKEN STOCK in there and COVER!

Turn the temp to medium, check your sauce, should be about done, transfer to the new dish and keep an eye on the chops, moving the pan (which has now formed a delicious looking sauce by now)

Cook for another 15 minutes covered, 5 uncovered and add a LITTLE bit of stock as needed to finish the dish, this will depend on how you've cooked it... keep it moist and a it will take a beautiful red color (and TONS of flavor!)

Serve with a great pasta and top with a little bit of the BBQ and some of the pan drippings

You'll be dreaming of them that night like I did, lolol..  SOO GOOD

ENJOY!!!  ~Chef Dad 
Thank you again for all the support you've all given recently!!  You are amazing!!!  <3

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Tikka Masala over Aloo Dum **news!**

The bigger picture...

Throughout the short course of this blog, I've learned several things.. not only about myself, but about others too.. 

I've learned that people will give others a chance, when one might not always think he/she has a chance at all.. 

I've learned that I'd like to pursue cooking, as a career...  I'd like to try and open a restaurant one day and hopefully keep it in the family for generations if possible.. 

and

I'd like to officially announce today to this group, that I'm going to put together a COOKBOOK!!

Yep... either self-published or find an agent (Still looking).. Probably just online distribution through private copyright but hell, it's something I've wanted to do, others have asked me to do and my family would love for me to do.. so, there it is.. it's out of the bag.. there will be a What's For Dinner Dad?! cookbook with recipes that I've created and my methods for each recipe.. XD  

I want to give a special thanks to the facebook group for reaching 200 page LIKES to achieve this blog entry!!  
The blog will continue now with REGULAR posts and many recipes, sharing of methods and daily life, from a skewed point of view.. Enjoy..
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Some of you have expressed interest in how I made the Tikka Masala over Aloo Dum, below is your recipe!


Indian food is love of food and culture
Respect the ingredients that you use to make this... good in, good out 
If you absolutely cannot find fresh spices, your local grocery usually has some form of the spice in jars.. major stores too.. go with whole spices when possible (and needed), and if they don't have one type, you can usually google it and figure out what whole spices are needed to make a particular powder..  do your best and PREP PREP PREP (very key)

What I've done for this dish is combine two recipes.. Tikka Marsala and used to potato method without the curry for Aloo Dum ... Nice chicken and potatoes, a good curry and great flavor.. 
-------------------------------------------------------------
What you will need
---------------------------------------------

2-3 lbs Boneless Chicken
--Ginger/Garlic Paste--
{3-4 cloves of garlic}
{fresh ginger }
--------------------
Onions Chopped
Green Chili (optional for heat, I can't have it =.(  )
Cilantro(coriander)
tomatoes sliced 
tomato paste
cinnamon stick
Curry powder
whole clove
fennel seed
chili powder
bay leaf
cumin seeds or powder
ginger powder
yogurt (squeeze as much water out as possible/greek yogurt/dry) 
fresh lemon juice
Ghee (clarified butter, heat butter, separate with cheesecloth, use clear oil) 
potatoes (small fingerling work well, if not just cube small)
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Believe it or not, I learned this by watching two separate videos, as always, I give credit, where it's due.. 
Watch these two several times to get a feel for what you will have to do here... Gordon's will be a bit difficult to follow, but the Manjula's recipe is direct to the point.. you will only be doing the potato prep from this video...  Boil, then fry potatoes, then you add them to the Tikka Masala ... 

Aloo Dum - http://youtu.be/g8wlWaEBncI
Tikka Masala - http://youtu.be/y-VjBxMufhw
Tikka Masala - VAHCHEF - http://youtu.be/QPCwH8uJawA (another recipe, but slower)

Above is the recipe that I used in mine.. a bit different than Gordon's! (which is delicious, I've made it before)

I do NOT add sugar to mine.. I think the ingredients provide a sweetness of their own!  
also, I used WHOLE garam masala vs powdered.. another big difference..

TIPS: Cook the garlic/ginger in large chunks, it won't matter because you will be blitzing them anyhow.. they brown nicely and give good flavor!  I do NOT blitz my bay leaf as it's provided undesirable results (dried bay leaf, fresh would blitz fine)

Fry up the chicken pieces in the SAME PAN you built that delicious paste with!

Simmer the curry, longer the better sometimes.. let it get deep red and taste it!!  if  it tastes like spices, add salt, the whole dish will change after a few minutes..   I add the salt AFTER the blitz, while reducing..  it goes VERY fast in the video, I know.. but watch it again and again..  I've also included the VAH CHEF Masala video for reference.. he's also very funny and I've tried a few of his recipes and they are DELICIOUS!!  (although he uses a LOT of ghee sometimes and I cut back on it)

Add coriander and serve...   add the potatoes after the blitz (of course)

It was very very good... the potatoes soak up the curry and really melt in your mouth.. 

I hope you all enjoy this little concoction I've threw together and if you make it sometime, let me know! =D

~Chef Dad

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