Now On Tumblr ;

Saturday, 21 August 2010

The Awesome Basics (part 2)

The Beef Fillet Steak,
Or The Duck breast

Take a good steak (Thick, unpounded around 3-4cm deep) or a good duck breast.
Pad it really really dry. Salt it, with about 1/2 teaspoon of salt per steak / breast and leave it in your fridge, uncovered, for a day 24hrs at least.

The salt draws humidity out of the meat, (not its juices, just any water) and will make for an incredibly crispy texture when you cook it.

When you d like to cook these - a day is pretty much on the safe side, any more depends on how cured you want our meat and how fresh it was when you bought it- pad dry again.

* Preheat oven at 220degrees Celsius.

Now, if its the duck we re doing, score the skin with a sharp knife, very narrow strips going in one direction, every 3-4 mm or so.
If its beef, just look at it.

Heat a non stick pan to foundry levels, until smoking. No oil or anything.

rub some oil on your steak / if its a duck breast just a tad on the nonskin side.

Put on the pan and let it squeak, looking around the ridges to see it getting cooked - the flesh changes colour. Wait around 1-2 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the cut. But be courageous, nothing will reverse the overcooked meat, whereas the undercooked will probably finish cooking anyway in the oven!
Just before you stop, sear the side edges too, on high heat for 10 seconds or so each side.

as you ve seen the edges of the meat sealing, stick on a pan, and put in the oven, mid shelf, turn temp, straight down to 180 degrees, leave for 10 minutes.
Take it straight out, let sit for 5 minutes in room temp.

You cannot get this wrong.

Now. For complications, anything can happen to that steak, or duck, before its cooked;
You can rub some pepper, red, green, black, all of them. Ginger, garlic (rub a clove cut in half, using the cut side to rub on the meat.).
Crust it with good miso powder, crushed dried mushrooms (almost pulverised into a powder) etc.
Typically, at the end after you take the steaks out, you d deglaze the pan with wine, or stock, or water, or cream to make a sauce of your liking.
But theres plenty of those out there, and i just felt a safe fool-proof way of doing the basic part perfectly well, is more essential as a building block to a food blog.
I meant a recipe blog.

The Awesome Basics (part 1)

It seems trivial, but i shall tell you how to cook potatoes.

You ll need;
Water from a tap
Potatoes (good, waxy or floury, both have their merrits in this)
Olive Oil, preferably mild, but any will do.

You shall peel them, and cut them in 1,5cm - 2cm cubes.

Then you shall boil them, in enough water to cover them, for 6 minutes since they start boiling (covered ; and salt the water generously, and put them together with the water from the tap, not after its started boiling).

Then, simply drain and cool them running the tap on them, like you d do with pasta, and smother them with some more salt and some light favoured olive oil, with your hands. Shuffle them around in a baking pan, the LOWEST rimmed pan, or just a flat open tray, use what is your most shallow, most open walled baking vessel whatsoever.

Shuffle well, as this releases the startchy flouriness around the potatoes, and the oil will rub into their edges with the salt.
You need enough oil to coat even a little tiny bit of all of them.

 Wait 10 minutes, let them sit, they ll cool down and the oil will sink in a bit more.
Meanwhile put your oven at 220.

Stick in the oven, mid to low shelf, and leave there for 20 minutes. Check to see how crisp they get.

The floury texture soaked in oil just around the surface of the potato but still just steamed in the middle is a treat.

Elaborated simplicity part 1.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Sausage From Sardegna, Sardinian Sausage

Dry Sardinian Sausage
Salsiccia Sarda.
Dry, cured, dark deep musky fennely sardinian sausage


The bridge between the east and west, balkans greece and italy. The sardinian sausage.

Yes yes,

Sardinian Sausage.