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    THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet News & Views

    Trends, Products & Items Of Note In The World Of Specialty Foods

    This is the blog section of THE NIBBLE. Read all of our content on TheNibble.com,
    the online magazine about gourmet and specialty food.

Archive for Meat & Poultry

TIP OF THE DAY: Crescent Dogs On A Stick

crescent-dogs-2-230

Crescent Rolls + Hot Dogs + Crescent Dogs. Photo and recipe courtesy Pillsbury.

 

You don’t need a grill to cook memorable Labor Day fare. Make that classic fun food, Crescent Dog on a Stick, in your oven.

A hot dog wrapped in a cheese and a Pillsbury Crescent roll, the stick is actually optional (as is the cheese). You can layer other flavor bursts inside the crescent, such as pickle relish or chopped jalapeños.

The recipe is easy and the experience will be remembered happily for a long time. Prep time is 10 minutes, total time is 25 minutes.

RECIPE: CRESCENT DOGS ON A STICK

Ingredients For 8 Servings

  • 8 hot dogs
  • 4 slices (3/4 oz each) American, Swiss or other cheese slice, each cut into 6 strips
  • 1 can (8 ounces) Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
  • 8 wooden corn dog sticks
  • Condiments of choice
  •  
    Preparation

    1. PREHEAT oven to 375°F. Slit hot dogs to within 1/2 inch of ends; insert 3 strips of cheese into each slit.

    2. SEPARATE the dough into triangles. Wrap a dough triangle around each hot dog. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet, cheese side up.

    3. BAKE at 375°F for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Insert 1 stick in each crescent dog and serve.

      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Best Burger Buns

    Beefburger on a bun with assorted dips.

    A brioche roll adds a gourmet touch to any type of burger. Photo © Craig Holmes | BSP.

     

    Gearing up for a Labor Day cookout? Go beyond the traditional burger bun and generate excitement with a selection of specialty burger buns (also, a selection of burgers—beef, bison, turkey, veggie, etc.). Here are our favorite options:

  • Bakery Rolls. Check your local bakery. Those that make good bread often make delicious hamburger rolls.
  • Batard. Wider than a baguette and pronounced buh-TARD, this crusty French bread can be pre-sliced into burger-size. Here are the different types of baguette-like breads.
  • Biscuits. You can turn refrigerated biscuit dough into homemade burger rolls. See the recipe below.
  • Brioche Buns or Challah Buns. Our personal favorite! Eggy yeast breads with rich with a soft, fluffy texture, both deliver rich flavor. They are best for smaller patties and lighter ingredients, so the bun absorbs the juices, but doesn’t fall apart. The difference between challah and brioche: Brioche is made with lots of butter and is richer; challah, which is made to be kosher parve with all meals, has no dairy ingredient.
  • Gluten Free Buns. All health-conscious people, including those with this option, will appreciate tis option. Gluten-free rolls from Rudi’s and Udi’s are so delicious, you can’t tell that they’re gluten free..
  • Potato Rolls. Typically made with mashed potatoes, these rolls are characteristically soft and light, yet durable.
  •  

  • Pita. We have a fondness for lamb burgers in pita, but look for a thick variety since the pita can break.
  • Portuguese Sweet Rolls. A refreshing burst of sweetness against roasty meat. Look for the King’s Hawaiian brand, which makes hamburger and hotdog rolls in addition to dinner rolls and other styles.
  • Pretzel Rolls. A sturdier bun, pretzel rolls are ideal for meaty burgers topped with many ingredients.
  • Skinny Buns. Those watching their carbs will appreciate this lighter replacement option. These are sold under different names. Skinny Buns is one brand; among others, Pepperidge Farm makes Deli Flats.
  • Whole Wheat Buns. Those watching their carbs will appreciate this lighter replacement option.
  •  
    LIGHTER BURGER OPTIONS

    If you’re hosting a crowd of calorie counters, Chef Leo from Grecian Delights, maker of Skinny Buns, shares his three favorite “lighter burger” recipes:

  • The Kickn’ Cow. Beef burgers made with lean beef, stacked with shredded lettuce, tomato and Zesty Greek Yogurt Feta Dip on a toasted 100% Whole Wheat Skinny Bun.
  • The Swiss Bird. A turkey burger topped with Swiss cheese, lettuce and tomato on a toasted 100% Whole Wheat Skinny Bun.
  • The Ultra Vegetarian: A veggie burger layered with hummus, lettuce, tomato, red peppers, green peppers and red onion on a toasted Multigrain Skinny Bun.
  •  
    Switch the sweet ketchup for a spicy salsa, avoiding the high fructose corn syrup or other sweetener.

     

    RECIPE: BURGER ON A BISCUIT

    Make your own burger biscuits with refrigerated biscuit dough. This recipe is from Pillsbury, and there’s also a hot and spicy version with jalapeño, Jack cheese and chipotle mayonnaise.

    Prep time is 10 minutes, total time is 30 minutes.

    Ingredients For 8 Burgers

  • 2 pounds lean (at least 80%) ground beef
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 slices American, Cheddar, Swiss or other cheese
  • 1 can (16.3 ounces) Pillsbury Grands Homestyle refrigerated original biscuits
  • Cooking spray
  •  

    biscuit-burger-pillsbury-230

    Make your own burger rolls from refrigerated biscuit dough. Photo courtesyPillsbury.

  • Toppings: lettuce, tomato slices, onion slices, pickles, ketchup and mustard
  •  

    Preparation

    1. HEAT gas or charcoal grill. In medium bowl, mix beef, salt and pepper; shape into 8 patties.

    2. PLACE patties on grill over medium heat. Cover grill; cook 10 to 12 minutes, turning once, until meat thermometer inserted in center of patties reads 160°F. Place cheese slices on patties to melt. Keep warm; reduce heat to medium-low.

    3. SEPARATE dough into 8 biscuits. Spray both sides with cooking spray. Place biscuits on double thickness of heavy-duty foil. Place foil on grill over indirect heat. Cover grill; cook 4 minutes; turn. Cook 2 to 4 minutes longer or until biscuits are golden brown.

    4. SPLIT biscuits in half. Place burgers on one half of each biscuit; top with desired toppings and remaining biscuit half.

      

    Comments

    RECIPE: Pulled Pork Sliders Or Sandwiches With Cabbage Slaw

    Planning to host a group for Labor Day? If you have access to a smoker, Chef David Venable recommends Smoked Mexican Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Cabbage Slaw. Alternatively, you can buy a barbecued pork butt, ready to heat and eat; or make it in a slow cooker.

    You can serve full-size sandwiches or smaller sliders.

    “If you’re having a big party,” says David, “these Mexican Pulled Pork Sandwiches are a great way to really stretch your dollar and it’s easy to double or even triple the recipe. Smoking the large cut of meat packs in incredible flavor.”

    Find more of David Venable’s recipes at QVC.com.

    RECIPE: PULLED PORK SANDWICHES

    Ingredients For The Pork Sandwiches

  • 4-5 pounds pork butt (bone-in or boneless)
  • 1 package taco seasoning
  • 1 envelope Sazón Adobo seasoning (Goya or other brand)
  • 10-12 of your favorite rolls for sliders or sandwiches
  •  
    Plus Your Favorite Toppings

  • Cheese
  • Cole slaw (recipe below)
  • Pickles
  • Red onion or sweet onion (like Vidalia)
  • Tomatoes
  •    

    pulled-pork-sliders-davidvenableQVC-230

    Top the pulled pork with the cabbage slaw. Photo courtesy QVC.

     
    Pork Preparation

    1. PREHEAT a smoker to 250°F and also prepare the wood chips. Using gloves, rub the taco seasoning and adobo liberally on the pork butt. Smoke for 4-5 hours, or until tender.

    2. REMOVE the pork butt and allow it to rest for 10-15 minutes. Then shred the meat into a bowl with two forks.

    3. ASSEMBLE the sandwiches: Place the desired amount of pork on the bottom half of a roll and top with the cabbage slaw.

     

    pulled-pork-sliders-davidvenableQVC-horiz-230

    Don’t want the bun? Eat it from the bowl! Photo courtesy QVC.

     

    RECIPE: CABBAGE SLAW (COLE SLAW)

    Ingredients

  • 3 cups green cabbage, shredded
  • 1 cup red cabbage, shredded
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1 poblano pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup mayo
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  •  
    Preparation

    1. COMBINE the cabbage, peppers, corn and cilantro in a large bowl.

    2. WHISK together mayo, lime juice, vinegar, honey, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Add the dressing to the cabbage mixture and toss to coat.

    3. REFRIGERATE until you’re ready to assemble the sandwiches.
     
    WHO INVENTED SLIDERS?

    A slider is a small sandwich, typically around 3 inches in diameter, served in a bun. The term primarily refers to small burgers, but can also include any small sandwich served on a slider roll.

    According to citations in Wikipedia, the name may have originated aboard U.S. Navy ships in the 1940s or 1950s. The name was inspired by the way greasy burgers slid across the galley grill while the ship pitched and rolled. A “slider with a lid” was a cheeseburger. White Castle trademarked the spelling variant “Slyder.”

    Today, gourmet sliders—bison, venison, Wagyu beef, etc.—are served as an hors d’oeuvre, amuse-bouche, or in multiples as an entrée.

      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: Cook Frozen Steaks

    A tip just heard on the Today Show: A Cook’s Illustrated taste test on cooking frozen versus thawed steaks.

    Conventional wisdom is that frozen meat should be thawed before cooking. But when testing frozen versus thawed strip steaks on the grill, the Cook’s Illustrated test showed that, while they took longer to cook, the frozen steaks were better: juicier and more evenly cooked.

    The technique also produced less overcooked meat, specifically the so-called “gray band” near the seared edge.

    Here’s the step-by-step:

    1. PREHEAT oven to 275° (135°C).

    2. FILL a skillet with 1/8″ oil and heat.

    3. SEAR meat until browned, about 90 seconds per side.

    4. TRANSFER meat to an oven safe wire rack, set upon a rimmed baking sheet.

    5. COOK in the oven to desired doneness, 18 to 20 minutes for a 1-inch-thick steak.

     

    porterhouse-on-grill-omahasteaksFB-230

    But will it work on the grill? Try the test yourself. Photo of Porterhouse steaks courtesy Omaha Steaks.

     
    Here’s the original article, along with a video.

    So try it yourself—not just with steaks but with burgers and other frozen meat and fish. And then, see how it works on the grill, and let us know.

      

    Comments

    PRODUCT: Cluck ‘n Moo Burgers

    Cluck ’n Moo is an appealing hybrid burger: the first (and as of now, only) half-chicken, half-beef burger. The all natural, antibiotic, hormone free and gluten free burger is made with meat from humanely raised chickens and grass-fed cows. You find it in the meat department next to the other fresh burgers.

    The combination of chicken and beef along with an innovative “smashed burger” preparation method seals in the juiciness and makes Cluck ’n Moo Burgers napkin-wiping delicious.

    When we first learned of it, we were attracted to the ideas of cutting back on cholesterol and saving a bit of the rainforest, which is constantly being cut down to provide more land for ranching beef cattle.

    Compared to a regular beef burger, a Cluck ’n Moo burger has 52% less fat, 57% less saturated fat and 34% fewer calories.

    But if you’re into saving money, it costs less too—chicken being less expensive than beef, and especially the better-for-you grass-fed beef used by the brand.

       

    Cluck-N-Moo-Burgers-box-border-230

    Look for the bright green box next to the other burgers. Photo courtesy Cluck ’n Moo.

     
    In the grass fed category, Cluck ‘n Moo burgers could cost about $2.00/pound less. The product retail varies from $5.99-7.99 pound; regular grass fed ground beef retails from $7.99-48.99/pound.

    The burgers are sold in packages of four, four-ounce burgers that are 190 calories each and contain 21 grams of protein.

    IT TASTES GREAT

    If you don’t tell them, most people won’t realize that Cluck ’n Moo is a blend of meats. In a side-by-side test, 100% beef will, of course, taste beefier. But Cluck ’n Moo delivers beef flavor even plain. With ketchup and garnishes, you can’t really tell.

    Steve Gold, a 20 year veteran of the industry, most recently of Murray’s Chicken (a NIBBLE favorite), created the product to combat the rising costs of beef, without sacrificing taste.

     

    cluck-n-moo-burger-chips-230

    Fresh off the grill. Photo courtesy Cluck ’n
    Moo.

     

    The brand is new, but retailers are responding.

  • Cluck ’n Moo is currently available in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Tennessee.
  • Look for it at Balducci’s, DeCicco Food Markets, Fairway, Kings, Publix, ShopRite and West Side Markets.
  • Or, buy it online through Rastelli Direct.
  •  
    Learn more at ClucknMooBurger.com.
     
    MORE COMING

    Dark meat chicken is used in the Cluck ’n Moo burger because it is moister than dark meat turkey. Cluck ’n Moo burgers will soon be joined by other customized mixes of meat and poultry including “Gobble ’n Moo” burgers.

    Cooking tips are printed on each box, but Cluck ’n Moo wants to remind you that, for any burgers:

  • An internal food thermometer should be used to check that the burgers have been cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F.
  • The burgers should rest for two minutes before serving.
  • FREEZING TIPS

    If you want to stock up and freeze the burgers:

  • REMOVE the plastic package from the box.
  • WRAP it in heavy-duty plastic wrap, aluminum foil, freezer paper or plastic bags made specifically for freezing.
  • DATE the package and used it within four months for optimal taste.
  • THAW in the refrigerator.
  •   

    Comments

    FOOD FUN: Italian Hot Dogs

    mozzarella-pesto-turkey-dog-jennieo-230

    Hot dogs, Italian style. Photo courtesy
    Jennie-O.

      What do you like on your hot dog? Pickle relish and onions? Sauerkraut? Chili?

    How about marinara sauce, mozzarella cheese and pesto?

    That’s the suggestion from Jennie-O, maker of turkey franks.

    Prep time is under 15 minutes, total time is 30 minutes.

    RECIPE: ITALIAN HOT DOGS

    Ingredients For 4 Servings

  • 4 turkey franks
  • 4 hot dog buns, split
  • ½ cup marinara sauce
  • ½ ball (8 ounces) fresh mozzarella cheese, torn
  • ½ cup roasted red bell peppers strips
  • 1/3 cup basil pesto
  •  

    Preparation

    1. PREPARE grill for medium heat. Grill franks according to package direction.

    2. GRILL buns, cut side down, until golden brown. Spread inside buns with marinara sauce. Add mozzarella and bell peppers. Place on grill, close lid.

    3. GRILL 2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Remove from grill. Add franks. Top with pesto.
     
    Perhaps you should serve these with a glass of Chianti instead of a beer?
     
    MORE HOT DOG RECIPES

  • Gourmet Hot Dog Recipes, Part 1
  • Gourmet Hot Dog Recipes, Part 2
  • Bacon Cheese Hot Dogs Recipe
  •  
      

    Comments

    GIFT: Assorted Burger Box From Omaha Steaks

    Owe someone a gift? We saw this burger collection on sale at Omaha Steaks, and knew it was the solution to some of our own gift-giving challenges, to thank everyone who has invited us to spend a summer weekend outside the city.

    The “Burger Mania Combo” includes four each of:

  • Beef Burgers, ground from the trimmings of Omaha steaks
  • Brisket Burgers, a bold, beefier take on the traditional sirloin blend
  • Pork & Bacon Burgers, a savory flavor explosion
  • Salmon Burgers, full of flavor and color
  • Veggie Burgers: delicious and packed with fiber
  •  
    THE SALE

     

    assorted-burgers-omahasteaks-230

    A burger bonanza: five different types of burger. Where to begin? Photo courtesy Omaha Steaks.

    The collection of 20 burgers, regularly $146.00, is on sale for $54.99. That’s a savings of $91.01, which more than offsets the shipping.
     
    The patties are four to six ounces, depending on variety. Order yours at OmahaSteaks.com.

    The burger patties arrive frozen. BYO buns and garnishes.

    For starters, here are 12 burger recipes from Omaha Steaks.

    That’s part of the fun. Make a party out of mix-and-match burgers, buns, sauces and garnishes. And beer, of course.

      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: How To Eat Less Red Meat

    People who love red meat tend to like large amounts of it. A one-pound strip steak? Sure, that’s a “normal portion,” just like a pint of ice cream.

    You can cut back on the ounces by enjoying your steak in a taco or on a salad. A few slices equal the three-ounce portions that nutritionists and healthcare professionals recommend, and you still get your steak delivered in a delicious way.

    Steak tacos and steak salad are also ways to stretch leftover steak or other grilled meat (we especially enjoy a grilled lamb salad).

    RECIPE: STEAK TACOS WITH CHIPOTLE SLAW & AVOCADO SALSA

    This recipe is from QVC’s David Venable. David suggests: “A fun way to make sure you get a beer that will go with your meal is to shop by region. If you’re cooking a big Italian meal, try an Italian beer. If you’re going Mexican, stock up on your Coronas. Try this recipe with a dark Mexican beer (like Negra Modelo) to match the heartiness of the steak.”

    Ingredients

    For The Steak

  • 1 2-pound-to-2-1/2 pound flank steak
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2/3 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and quartered
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 package (10-12 count) 8″ soft taco shells
  •    

    steak-tacos-target-230jpg

    Steak tacos let you enjoy steak—just less of it. Photo courtesy QVC.

     

    For The Chipotle Slaw

  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons canned chipotle in adobo (or more, to taste), chopped
  • 1/2 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 6 cups shredded cabbage
  •  
    For The Avocado Salsa

  • 3 avocados, diced
  • 1/3 cup red onion, minced
  • Juice of 4 limes
  • 1/2 of a large jalapeño, seeded and minced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1/3 fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 plum tomato, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  •  

    steak_salad_McC-230

    Steak salad (recipe below) provides the opportunity to enjoy steak and salad, while cutting back on the steak. Photo courtesy McCormick.

     

    Preparation

    1. PREPARE the marinade. Combine the garlic, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, jalapeño and chili powder in the bowl of a food processor and process until finely minced.

    2. PLACE the flank steak in a large zip-top plastic bag, pour in the marinade and squeeze out any excess air before sealing. Allow the steak to marinate in the refrigerator for at least two hours; do not exceed 8 hours.

    3. PREPARE the slaw. Combine the sour cream, milk, chipotle and vinegar in a large bowl and whisk until combined. Add the cabbage and stir until it’s completely coated with dressing.

    4. PREPARE the salsa. Combine all the ingredients in a medium-size bowl; toss until combined. If kept refrigerated, this can be made up to 2 hours prior to serving.

    5. GRILL the steak: Preheat a barbecue or indoor grill and set the temperature to medium high. Grill the steak for 8 minutes on each side, or to your desired degree of doneness. Let it rest for 10 minutes before cutting, diagonally across the grain, into thin slices.

    6. ASSEMBLE the tacos. Place 4-5 slices of steak in a taco shell, top with approximately a quarter cup of salsa and the same amount of slaw.

     

    RECIPE: STEAK SALAD

    Hearty greens, including spinach, peppery arugula and bitter watercress, are good counterpoints to the steak. In the summer, a garnish of berries adds seasonal festiveness.

    Ingredients

  • Mixed greens (try mixed greens, including arugula and baby spinach)
  • Kalamata olives (or olive of choice)
  • Raw mushrooms, sliced
  • Red onion, sliced
  • Halved cherry tomatoes or beefsteak tomato wedges
  • Grilled steak, lamb or other meat
  • Optional: blue cheese or goat cheese
  • Optional: blueberries or other berries
  • Vinaigrette (soy sauce mixed with rice wine vinegar makes a delicious, low-calorie dressing)
  •  
    Also check out this Thai Beef Salad.

    Find more of David Venable’s recipes at QVC.com.

     
    Preparation

    1. TOSS salad greens with tomatoes, mushrooms, onion, olives and dressing.

    2. LAYER sliced steak atop the salad. Garnish with crumbled or sliced cheese and berries.

      

    Comments

    RECIPE: Pork Belly Lettuce Wraps

    kuromitsu-glazed-pork-belly-sushisamba-230

    Pork belly lettuce wraps: a real treat! Photo
    courtesy Sushi Samba.

     

    In honor of the World Cup Games in Brazil, Brazilian-Japanese fusion restaurant Sushisamba will be serving a signature dish from Chef Pedro Duarte: Kuromitsu Pork Belly Lettuce Wraps.

    Kuromitsu is a Japanese sugar syrup, similar to but milder than molasses. We could eat an entire tray of these sweetly glazed pork belly treats. Consider them as a first course for Father’s Day dinner…or make all four and keep them for yourself.

    RECIPE: KUROMITSU GLAZED PORK BELLY LETTUCE WRAPS

    Ingredients

    For The Pork Belly Confit (Yields 4 Five-Ounce Portions)

  • 1.25 pounds pork belly
  • 1 ounce salt
  • 1 ounce sugar
  • 1 liter canola oil
  • 1 bouquet garni (thyme, garlic, bay leaf, black pepper)
  •  
    Preparation

    1. RUB the pork belly with the sugar/salt mixture and allow to marinate for 6 hours.

    2. RINSE, pat dry and submerge in a hotel pan (also called a steam table pan—a deep roasting pan will do) with the canola oil and bouquet garnish. Cover with tin foil and cook in the oven for 4 hours at 325°F.

    3. REMOVE from the oil when the pork belly is soft and allow to cool in the refrigerator with some weight on top. You can reuse the oil for another cooking process.
     
    FOR THE LETTUCE WRAPS

    Ingredients Per Serving

  • 4.5 ounces pork belly confit
  • 1 ounce kuromitsu glaze (see below)
  • Lemon zest, to taste
  • 1 ounce hearts of palm (palmito), julienned
  • 1 ounce frisée
  • 1 bibb lettuce leaf
  •  

    Preparation

    1. PREPARE the pork belly a day in advance in advance (6 hours marinating plus 4 hours cooking). To assemble:

    2. MIX lemon zest, palmito and frisée to create garnish. To plate, place 1 piece of pork belly on 1 piece of bibb lettuce. Brush pork belly with kuromitsu glaze. Top with the fresh palmito-frisée salad. It’s delicious!
     
    WHAT IS KUROMITSU

    Kuromitsu is a Japanese sugar syrup, typically made from unrefined Okinawan kurozato (black sugar). The term means “black honey”; it is similar to molasses, but thinner and milder.

    It is used to add sweetness to sweet Japanese dishes. It is one of the ingredients used in making wagashi, and it serves well with kuzumochi, fruits, ice cream and cakes. matcha soy milk jello. Drizzle on your choice of Japanese sweets, such as anmitsu, shiratama dango, kudzu mochi, warabi mochi, or kinako on toast.

     

    kuromitsu-sugar-syrupa-alibaba-230

    You can purchase kuromitsu at Asian markets or online. Photo courtesy AliBaba.com.

     

    You can find premade kuromitsu in Asian products stores, but here’s a recipe courtesy of Taste Of Zen.

    RECIPE: HOMEMADE KUROMITSU

    Ingredients For 1 Cup

  • 2/3 cup dark muscovado or other unrefined brown cane sugar (the different types of brown sugar)
  • 2 tablespoons light muscovado sugar
  • 1/2 cup white table sugar
  • 1/2 cup hot or boiling* water
  •  
    *It is better to stir boiled water, not cool water, as it won’t spatter and burn you.
     
    Preparation

    1. PLACE sugars and water in a nonstick pot and heat over medium heat. Once sugars starts to melt, shake the pot extensively while gently stirring with a wooden spoon. Do not over-stir or lumps can form. While stirring, add hot water a little at a time. The syrup may bubble and spurt; wear protective clothing to avoid burns. When the sugar is completely melted…

    2. REDUCE the heat and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The syrup will thicken and a caramel-like aroma will emanate. If the syrup starts to lump or stick to the bottom of the pot, lower the heat.

    3. REMOVE from heat and let cool. Store any extra syrup in an airtight glass jar at room temperature or in the fridge. It should keep for 2 to 3 months. Bring refrigerated syrup to room temperature before using (you can heat it for 10 seconds in the microwave).

      

    Comments

    TIP OF THE DAY: More Modern Surf & Turf

    poached-egg-salmon-cafeSFA-230

    Surf and turf can combine any foods from
    each realm. Above, grilled salmon and a
    poached egg from Cafe SFA in New York City.

     

    We love surf and turf in all forms, and recently added this tasty dish from Cafe SFA to our list of unusual surf and turf combinations (below).

    There’s a chicken egg, from the turf, and a fish filet from the surf.

    Chef Alex Reyes topped grilled asparagus with a salmon fillet and a soft poached egg, garnished with asparagus puree, sesame hollandaise sauce, nori powder and green tea salt.

    Create your own version of surf and turf, a 50-year-old concept that serves proteins from the land and sea on the same plate.

    Although it started with a lobster and steak, any items from the realms of the earth and the sea can be combined into surf and turf. Clever Japanese chefs have even created surf and turf sushi, such as a lobster maki topped with torched tenderloin from Ten Prime Steak And Sushi in Providence, Rhode Island.

     

    SURF & TURF HISTORY

    While meat and seafood have been served at the same meal since since the dawn of plenty, and Diamond Jim Brady (1856-1917) famously consumed platters heaped with steaks and lobsters, the pairing known as surf and turf originated in 1960s America.

    Some sources noted in FoodTimeline.org claim that the concept originated on the East Coast, based on a 1966 print article in the Miami News. The columnist says that the restaurant La Hasta has created the best thing since lox and bagels—surf and turf; and that on some weekends the management had to take the dish off the menu, since demand exceeded supply.

    Others say the West Coast has the honors: Food writers Jane and Michael Stern claim, without printed proof, that the same dish by the same name was served at the Sky City restaurant in the Seattle Space Needle, at the 1962 World’s Fair. That may be, but documentation is required. If anybody remembers it from the World’s Fair, please raise your hand. There’s a bonus if you have the menu.

    The earliest earliest print reference found by FoodTimeline.org, our favorite reference source on the history of all things food, was published in the Eureka [California] Humboldt Standard of August 14, 1964: “An entrée in restaurants in Portland [Oregon] is called surf and turf—a combination of lobster and steak.”

    Sorry, East Coasters: 1964 beats 1966.

    And regardless, surf and turf became the darling of American steakhouse menus, combining the two most expensive items on the menu: lobster (surf) and steak or filet mignon (turf). It has its own food holiday, February 29th, National Surf & Turf Day.

     

     
    Regardless of origin, consider serving a modern surf and turf variation for Father’s Day or other special occasion.

    Some versions don’t even require a special occasion—last night we had steak and tuna skewers.

    Each week we “invent” a different combination. Recent pairings have included:
     
    THE NEW SURF AND TURF COMBINATIONS

  • Bacon-topped halibut filet
  • Bass wrapped in pancetta, with caviar-topped oysters
  • Burger garnished with a fried shrimp (or make it edgy with a fish stick and tartar sauce)
  • Beef and tuna carpaccio (raw)
  • Eggs Benedict with Canadian bacon and lobster or crab
  • Grilled lamb chop or pork chop and scallops
  • Grilled skirt steak and shrimp or crab cakes
  • Filet mignon with lump crab meat or crab legs
  • Lamb chops with bacon-wrapped scallops
  •  

    lobster-filetmignon-whitewine-ruthschris-230

    Classic Surf & Turf. Photo courtesy Ruth’s Chris Steak House.

  • Lobster ravioli with veal sauce, veal ravioli with bay scallops, oxtail ravioli with lobster claws
  • Mixed greens salad with sliced steak (lamb, pork, chicken, etc.) and grilled scallops or shrimp
  • Salmon burgers and bacon
  • Seared scallop with crispy prosciutto
  • Shrimp skewers with beef skewers
  • Steak and rare grilled salmon, tuna or other favorite fish
  • Steak and shrimp: grilled steak with fried shrimp or with shrimp cocktail
  • Steak and fried oysters (or, garnish the steak with a raw oyster)
  •  
    Try your own hand at the new surf and turf and let us know your favorites.

      

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