Recipes From A Good Cook

If you will be entertaining this long holiday weekend, or any time, here are a few recipes that will WOW your guests.

APPETIZER: Brie Cheese

Brie Wheel
Puff Pastry Sheets
Bottle of Sun Dried Tomatoes with Herbs
Fresh Basil
Mozzarella cheese slices

Roll out one puff pastry sheet – not too thin (make sure your surface is floured).
Place Brie wheel on top
Layer with chopped sun dried Tomatoes. Don’t be skimpy.
Layer with chopped fresh basil. Don’t be skimpy.
Layer with sliced Mozzarella cheese.

Bring sides up and secure by pinching. Egg wash.
Bake on non stick foil or parchment paper for 20 – 30 minutes at 350.

MAIN ENTRÉE: Garlic Braised Short Ribs with Red Wine

2 T veg oil
5 pounds bone in short ribs – must be AT LEAST 1 ½ inches thick
Salt and Pepper
2 large heads of garlic, halved crosswise (no need to peel)
1 medium onion, chopped
4 ribs of celery, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped large
3 T tomato paste
2 cups dry red wine (about a half of bottle)
2 cups beef stock or bone broth (if unavailable you may use beef bouillon dissolved in water)
4 springs fresh thyme
1 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Oven at 275.

Heat oil in large dutch oven over medium high heat. Season meat on all sides with salt and pepper. Working in batches, sear the meat on all sides deeply and evenly. Transfer to large plate and continue until all meat has been seared well.

Pour off all but 2 T. of fat, make sure to leave all the browned bits in pan. Reduce heat to medium and add garlic, cut side down and cook undisturbed until golden brown; 1 – 2 minutes. Remove paper layer off garlic. Add onion, celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat and cook until vegetables are softened but not entirely browned – 5 to 10 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir to coat. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally until tomato paste has started to caramelize a bit on the bottom; 2 – 3 minutes.

Add wine, scrape up all bits in bottom of pan. Simmer 2 – 3 minutes. Stir in beef stock along with thyme. Return meat to pan, make sure to add all juices from the plate. Submerge meat in juice, adding more beef stock if necessary to make sure all meat is covered in liquid. Transfer to oven.

Cook undisturbed for 3 ½ – 4 hours or longer if needed. I would recommend not eating the vegetables as their flavor is gone and immersed into the gravy. Strain gravy and serve with mashed potatoes.

VEGETABLE: Asparagus

One bunch Asparagus
3 T. EVOO  (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
1 ½ T. Parmesan cheese
1 t. salt
½ t. pepper
1 T. lemon juice

Place all ingredients and Asparagus in gallon seal bag. Shake and let sit in refrigerator for 3-4 hours. Bake on foil lined sheet at 425 for 10 – 15 minutes. May also bake at 350 for 20 minutes.

A POETIC ENDING TO A FINE MEAL…CALLED DESSERT TRIFLE

¼ c raspberry jelly or seedless jam
4 cups frozen raspberries plus more for garnish (can also use fresh…I prefer fresh)
3 cups Half and Half
6 T. sugar
1 pinch salt
6 egg yolks
3 T. cornstarch
½ cup Drambuie
1 – 17 ounce package of lady fingers cookies or Vienna cookies etc. split
1 cup heavy whipping cream

Sliced almonds for garnish

In small saucepan melt jelly. Combine with raspberries, gently stirring to coat. Set aside.

In large saucepan over medium low heat, bring Half and Half , sugar and salt to simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar.
Whisk egg yolks and cornstarch together in large bowl until smooth.

Whisking yolks constantly, slowly pour in Half and Half mixture. Return mixture to saucepan, stirring frequently, cook until thick, like soft pudding – about 8 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in 2 T. Drambuie.

Transfer to bowl, press plastic on surface and refrigerate until cooled. 

To assemble: cover bottom of bowl with layer of ladyfingers, and go up the side pushing to fit. Brush or drizzle all of the remaining Drambuie. Layer in raspberries, then half of custard. Repeat layers. Place plastic on top and refrigerate for 2 – 4 hours.

Whip cream and spread on top. If desired, place sliced almonds around top along with a few fresh raspberries.

NOW if you are more in the mood for a good barbeque…here is a simple but very good homemade recipe for sauce.

BARBEQUE SAUCE

Place all ingredients in saucepan and cook over low heat for about twenty minutes.

1 stick butter
½ cup generous brown sugar
3 T. white wine
1 T. Dijon mustard
2 t. steak sauce
2 t. Worcester sauce
¾ cup ketchup
1/8 cup molasses
2 t. liquid smoke
¼ t. onion powder
¼ t. garlic powder
Salt and Pepper

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