Pot Roast

  • 4-5 lb beef chuck roast
  • 1 1/2 T vegetable oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions, medium dice
  • 1 red bell pepper, medium dice
  • 2 carrots, medium dice
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 1/4 cup brandy
  • 3 c beef or chicken stock
  • 3 T flour
  • 2 T brown sugar
  • 3 T tamarind concentrate
  • 2 T Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 T soya sauce
  • 1 T fish sauce
  • 3 bay leaves and/or 3 fresh stems of thyme
  • 1 1/2 c 2″ cubed yellow potatoes
  • 1 1/2 c 2″ cubed turnips

Preheat oven to 225°F.

Season the roast on all sides with kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Sear in an oiled very hot cast iron skillet or large dutch oven on all sides until well browned. Sauté the onions, garlic, peppers and carrots aromatics until soft and browned. sprinkle the flour over the veggies and cook until the flour is very slightly toasted. Once the vegetables are done, deglaze pan with brandy and pour over roast with the onions carrots peppers and garlic. Add all the remaining braise ingredients including the bay leaves and thyme.

Braise with the lid slightly ajar until the roast is very tender but not falling apart. Leaving the lid slightly off ensures that the temperature of the roast and liquid never goes over about 185°F, ensuring that you don’t overcook the roast. This can take anywhere from 3 – 6 hours depending on your roast and your oven. Start checking it around 2 hours in to see how it’s progressing. Around an hour and a half before you think the roast will be done add in the potatoes and turnips. Once everything is cooked let it come to room temperature and then sit overnight in the fridge. The next day skim the fat off the top remove the roast, and check the potatoes and turnips for doneness. If they’re still a bit firm, you can cook them further in the sauce as you reduce it. If they’re done, remove them and keep warm in a 200°F oven and continue to reduce the sauce by at least half or until it is flavorful and thickened but not too strong. Once sufficiently reduced and thick, slice the roast against the grain in thick slices and place in a pan. Spoon the sauce over the meat and heat on low until the meat is warm through. You can do the same for the potatoes and turnips. serve over buttered Spätzle and top with freshly minced parsley.

 

Cambodian Grilled Lemongrass Skewers

  • 4 tablespoons minced fresh lemongrass
  • 15 Kaffir lime leaves, chiffonade
  • 1 T minced fresh ginger
  • 1 T minced fresh galangal
  • 8 medium garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/4 medium red onion, diced OR 4 scallions
  • 1 T turmeric powder
  • 1 1/2 t fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2-3 T Three Crabs Vietnamese fish sauce
  • 1 T vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c Panko

Place all ingredients aside from the meat, egg, and breadcrumbs into a food processor and pulse until a thick paste forms.

Combine with the meat, breadcrumbs and egg until thoroughly mixed.

Mould onto bamboo skewers that have been soaked in water overnight. Grill over medium-high heat until charred on the outside and cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side.

Beef & Potato Curry with Yoghurt Gravy

  • 5 medium red or yellow waxy potatoes, cubed
  • 3 large yellow onions, sliced
  • 3/4 c vegetable oil
  • 2 lbs stewing beef or lamb
  • 2 t garam masala
  • 3/4 t salt
  • 6-8 curry leaves
  • 1 1/4 t cumin seeds
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  •  3 fresh hot green chillies, minced
  • 2 dried red chillies, crushed
  • 2 t grated ginger-root
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 t paprika (not hot)
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 c plain yoghurt
  • 2 1/2 c water
  • chopped green chillies and chopped cilantro to garnish

Cook the sliced onions in a large, deep pot (preferably enameled cast iron) over medium-high heat until browned, about 10-15 minutes. In the meantime, mix the beef or lamb with the garam masala and 3/4 t salt. Wash and cut potatoes. Mix yoghurt with ginger, garlic, red and green chillies, paprika and salt. Very lightly crush cardamom pods, remove seeds and discard the husks.

Remove onions from pot draining out oil as you do so. Remove all but 4 T of oil from pot and set aside. Sauté meat on medium-high until well browned in 2-3 batches depending on size of your pot, adding in some of the reserved oil between batches if needed. During the last batch add in the curry leaves and during the last 2 minutes the cumin and cardamom seeds and cinnamon sticks. Add all the meat back to the pot along with the onions and stir to heat through, 1-2 minutes. Slowly add in the yoghurt mixture and cook for a few minutes until the garlic and ginger are just cooked and the oil separates out from the yoghurt mixture.

Add the water and scrape up any fond that has developed on the bottom of the pot. Cover and simmer for 40 minutes or until meat is barely tender but not overdone, stirring occasionally so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom. Add in potatoes and simmer another 20 minutes with the lid off until potatoes are cook through and the sauce has reduced and thickened up. Adjust with salt and add more water if sauce is too thick.

Serve with hot basmati rice, naan, and fresh chopped green chillies and cilantro.

Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large shallots, minced
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced thinly lengthwise
  • 3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 red chiles (fresno, jalapeño, or serrano), stemmed, and chopped
  • 1 red Thai bird chile, stemmed, seeded and chopped
  • 1 lb beef chuck or boneless shin, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons Chinese 5 spice powder
  • 2 quarts vegetable or beef stock
  • 8-12 ounces dried flat udon noodles
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped 
  • 4 teaspoons brown sugar 
  • 2-3 teaspoons Chinese chili bean sauce, plus more as needed OR 1 t each of akamiso/doenjang, gochujang, and chile-garlic paste/sambal oelek
  • 3 teaspoons dark soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch mixed with 2 teaspoons water (opt.)
  • 5 baby bok choy or equal amount of other tender cabbage or hearty lettuce, sliced into 1 inch ribbons
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • small handful fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots and onions and cook until softened, 3 to 4 minutes, and then stir in the ginger, garlic and chiles and cook, stirring, for about 1 minute. Meanwhile, season the beef cubes with kosher salt and the 5 spice powder. Add the beef and stir-fry until it begins to brown, and then pour in the vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook until the meat is very tender, 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes. 

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the udon according to package instructions. Drain and rinse under cold water. Set aside 

Add the carrots to the simmering soup, cover, and cook until crisp-tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Whisk together the sugar, chile bean sauce and soy sauce in a small bowl until the sugar is dissolved and stir it into the soup. While stirring, pour the cornstarch slurry into the soup and cook until thickened, about 1 minute. Stir the cabbage into the broth 1-2 minutes before serving, or if using lettuce, add directly before service.

Just before serving, divide the noodles between 2 bowls and ladle the hot soup over each bowl. Garnish with scallions, cilantro and sriracha. Recipe adapted from Ching’s Classic Beef Noodle Soup by Ching-He Huang.

Beef Paprikash

  • 1 lb stewing beef cut into 1″ cubes
  • 3 medium yellow onions, sliced (end to end)
  • 2-3 large red bell peppers OR any assortment of sweet and spicy peppers, thickly sliced. I used 1 sweet red bell pepper, 3 red mexi-bell chillies, 2 red cubanelles chillies and a red anaheim chilli which together provided mild to moderate heat. Add more chillies or red pepper flakes if you like it hotter.
  • 12 oz small mushrooms, halved or quartered if large
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 1/2 t very good quality sweet Hungarian or Spanish paprika, divided
  • 2 1/2 t very good quality smoked Hungarian or Spanish paprika. divided
  • 3/4 t crushed (but not ground) whole caraway seeds
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2-3 T all purpose flour, divided
  • 4 C beef broth
  • 1/3 C red wine
  • 3 T tomato paste
  • 1 quart jarred tomatoes
  • 1/2 C full-fat sour cream at room temperature
  • fresh dill

Toss the beef with 1 1/2 T of flour and 1/2 t each of sweet and smoked paprika. Brown in a large cast iron pot/dutch oven in 2 batches to prevent overcrowding. Remove and deglaze the pot with some of the red wine, adding the liquid to the set-aside beef. Sauté the onions until well browned and then add in the garlic, mushrooms, peppers/chillies and caraway seeds. Cook on medium-high until the mushrooms and peppers start to soften and brown a bit. Remove and set aside. Deglaze with the rest of the red wine and add in the tomato paste and paprika. Cook until the tomato paste thickens up significantly and begins to caramelise and darken. Add in the tomatoes, beef broth and reserved veggies, beef and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer and cook at least an hour or until the beef is very tender. Thicken the sauce with 1-2 T of flour mixed with cold water and then added slowly to the liquid, adding more flour if needed to thicken the sauce. Cook until thickened and then remove from the heat. Whisk in the sour cream. Serve with buttered spätzle or other egg noodles and garnish with fresh dill.

Taco Seasoning

1 T chilli powder
1½ t freshly ground cumin
1 t freshly ground coriander
1 t smoked paprika
1 t oregano
½ t garlic powder
½ t onion powder
½ t red pepper flakes, depending on how spicy your chilli powder is
1 t kosher salt
1½ t corn starch (optional)

First of all make sure your chilli powder is nothing but dried, ground chillis. Often they’ll sell you chilli powder that has many other additives in it. I like a nice hot chilli powder, and if it’s hot enough, will omit the red pepper flakes entirely.

Mix all ingredients together, adding the corn starch only if you want to have a thicker, saucier taco meat (you’ll have to add water as well to the taco meat for this to happen). Alternatively, you can make the spice mix and add in the corn starch to the meat separately.

Indonesian Rendang Curry

2 lbs cubed beef, bison, or lamb

2 medium onions, chopped rough
3 large garlic cloves
2″ fresh ginger root, peeled

1 2/3 C coconut milk

3 t coriander seeds (2 t ground)
1 t green peppercorns
3/4 t fennel seeds (1/2 t ground)
10 cloves (1/4 t ground)
4 small red chilli peppers (piri piri or bird’s eye), chopped very finely (or 1-2 t red pepper flakes, ground)
2 t cumin
1 t turmeric

1 stem of lemon grass, white part only, minced

zest of 1/2 lemon
2 T lemon juice
1 T brown sugar (or palm sugar if you have it)

Brown the meat in a large heavy-bottomed pot, working in two batches. Meanwhile, toast the whole spices (coriander, pepper, fennel, cloves, and red pepper flakes if you don’t have chilis) in a small sauté pan over low heat until fragrant. Put them into a spice grinder or small food processor and grind. You can also use pre-ground spices, but it won’t be as fragrant or fresh. Purée the onions, garlic, and ginger in a food processor or blender until smooth. You may need to add a little water if you use a blender. Crush the white end of the lemon grass with the side of your knife, and finely chop (do not use the woody green parts).

After the meat has been browned, remove from the pot, and add in the coconut milk. Let reduce by about half. Add in the spices and stir for about 1 min, then add the meat back in. Add the puréed onion mixture, lemon grass, chilis (if used), lemongrass, lemon juice, and sugar.

Now simmer over medium-low to low heat for about two hours, stirring frequently (about every 10 min or so). The liquid will reduce and the mixture will start to brown. Once it starts to brown, you’ll have to stir it almost constantly to keep it from sticking and burning. The curry is done when the oil from the coconut milk has separated out from the sauce, and the curry is dark brown, and reduced almost totally. Cook it until the meat chunks are coated with the sauce, and there is little to no sauce elsewhere in the pot, but don’t cook until it is totally dry.

Serve in a bowl over medium-grain rice, and whatever vegetable side-dish you desire.

If you have the time, make this 2-3 days ahead, and store in the fridge, allowing the flavours to develop and mature even more.