Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sunday dinner...before work.

So you know, I have more late posts to add regarding my jam processing, but those will come with time, my hope is some time this week.

Tonight I actually felt like I had the energy to make a wonderful dinner for the hubs and I, to follow along pull out your trusted Better Homes and Gardens plaid cookbook, mine is pink. For those of you who don't know I work nights every weekend from Thursday to Sunday, which is why I at times do not have the energy to cook much; tonight however was not one of those nights, we had Steak Au Poivre, fried potatoes and onions, and artichokes with herbed butter.

So how did it all go. I used beef tenderloin steak for the steak, it actually cooked really quickly, Ashley's was a little underdone for him as he prefers a more medium well steak. I on the other hand have moved from the overdone well done of my youth to a perfectly cool medium/medium rare. Once the steaks were all done, I completed the sauce for the steaks. The recipe calls for beef broth, and tonight amazingly I had none in the house, and I had no bullion cubes to cheat with so I just added water in place of broth. The sauce was delish and easy to make, brandy, water, cream, Dijon mustard, and the drippings from the steak. I decided to add a bit of salt after tasting, remember the importance of not salt is not necessarily about salt but about enhancing the flavor.

The artichokes took a bit more time to prepare and cook. This is my first time to EVER prepare artichokes and I was a bit nervous about the task, however it was much easier then I imagined. So I pulled off some of the petals that were not firmly attached to the base, snipped the petals that were remaining on, and cut about an inch of the top off, finally peeling the stalk after removing almost all of it. Once done with preparing the artichokes they were placed in acidulated water (or water with lemon juice) until the water for cooking had come to a boil. After the water was to a boil I placed the chokes in the boiling water, and placed a lid smaller then my pot on top of them to hold them into the water as the float, placed the lid on the pot and simmered for 30 minutes. While they were cooking I prepared the butter sauce, adding dried herbs as opposed to fresh, as well as adding a dose of parmesan oil dipping seasoning so there was a bit more flavor to the sauce.

The final dish was the fried potatoes and onions, this one goes way back in my dads family I am guessing. This recipe starts with peeled sliced potatoes, thinly sliced. Then you put those in a skillet with a bit of oil, while those are starting to cook peel an onion and cut in half then slice thin, add to potatoes. I use about 4 smallish potatoes and two onions, because I love the onion flavor. To the potatoes and onions in the skillet add salt and pepper to preference and place the lid on the skillet cooking until tender and browned.

The overall opinion of the meal, the potatoes are my favorite so those I know will make a repeat. The steak was good, and the sauce was good as well, now Ashley surprisingly liked the sauce as well, I worried because it has brandy in it, and he generally does not like the flavor of liquor. The artichokes, were not as difficult to work with as I expected, however they were rather bland, requiring salt and the dipping sauce was a must! I will try the artichokes again however not this recipe; most likely a recipe that roasts the artichokes.

Well that was dinner, and now I should go prepare for my final shift of the week. Hope all are well and happy eating!


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