Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Sage Sausage and Jack Cheese

Ingredients

2 sage/herbed sausages (about 14 ounces), either pork, turkey, or vegetarian
6 ounces shredded Jack or medium Asiago cheese
1-2 tablespoons (about 2 ounces) freshly grated aged cheese such as Parmesan, locatelli Romano, or dry Jack
2 green onions, thinly sliced
2-3 teaspoons sour cream
pinch of cumin seeds
tiny pinch of turmeric
dab of brown mustard
pinch of cayenne pepper or a few drops hot pepper sauce
8 thin slices whole-grain (such as wheatberry, sunflower seed, or sprouted wheat) bread
2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1-2 Moroccan-style preserved lemons, rinsed well and sliced into slivers or chopped
1-2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Method

  1. Roughly dice the sausages, then brown them quickly over medium heat in a small nonstick skillet. Remove from the pan, place on paper towels, and leave to cool. Leave the pan on the stove and turn off the heat.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the 2 cheeses with the green onions, sour cream, cumin seeds, turmeric, mustard, and cayenne pepper. When the sausage is cool, mix it into the cheese.
  3. Pile 4 slices of the bread with the cheese-and-sausage mixture, then top with a second piece of bread. Pat down well and press lightly but firmly so that the sandwich will hold together.
  4. Reheat the pan over medium-high heat and add about half the olive oil and garlic, then push the garlic to one side and add 1 or 2 sandwiches, however many the pan will hold. Cook until lightly crisped on one side and the cheese begins to melt. Turn over and cook the second side until it is golden brown. Remove to a plate and repeat with the other sandwiches, garlic, and oil. You may either discard the lightly browned garlic or nibble on it; whichever you do, remove it from the pan before it blackens as it will give a bitter flavor to the oil if it burns.
  5. Serve the sandwiches right away, piping hot, cut into triangles, and sprinkled with the preserved lemon and chopped parsley.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Greilled Cheese


Today’s Comic

Pastrami Bleu Cheese Melt

Ingredients

olive oil
1/2 cup chopped yellow onions
1/4 cup sliced mushrooms
fresh bread rolls, enough for 2 sandwiches
pastrami slices
1/4 cup crumbled bleu cheese

Method

  1. Pour a little olive oil in a saute pan, and over low-medium heat, slowly sauté onions and mushrooms until they are soft and somewhat caramelized.
  2. Slice rolls and assemble sandwiches by layering pastrami slices, bleu cheese, and cooked onions and mushrooms.
  3. Place sandwiches in a hot cast-iron grill pan with a cast-iron lid press on top or use a panini pan. Let bleu cheese melt and allow the bread to get crispy.
  4. Serve warm.

Makes 2 servings.

Source: The Organic Family Cookbook


Today’s Comic

Roasted Leg of Venison

Ingredients

1 onion, chopped
1 carrot chopped
1 celery stick, chopped
3 or 4 garlic cloves, crushed
4-6 fresh parsley sprigs
4-6 fresh thyme sprigs or 1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 bay leaves
1 tbsp black peppercorns, lightly crushed
3 cups red wine
4 tbsp vegetable oil, plus more for brushing
1 young venison haunch (about 6 lb), trimmed
2 tbsp plain flour
1 cup beef stock
1 unwaxed orange
1 unwaxed lemon
4 tbsp redcurrant or raspberry jelly
4 tbsp ruby port or Madeira
1 tbsp cornflour, blended with 1/2 tbsp of water
l tbsp red wine vinegar
fresh herbs, to garnish
French Scalloped Potatoes, to serve

Method

  1. Place the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, wine and oil in a deep glass dish large enough to hold the venison, then add the venison and turn to coat. Cover the dish with clear film and leave to marinate in the fridge for 2-3 days, turning occasionally.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/ 350°F.
  3. Remove the meat from its marinade and pour the marinade into a saucepan. Pat the meat dry with kitchen paper, then brush the meat with a little oil on all sides and wrap tightly in foil.
  4. Roast the venison for 15-20 minutes per pound for rare to medium meat. About 25 minutes before the end of the cooking time, remove the foil, sprinkle the venison with the flour and baste with the cooking juices.
  5. Add the stock to the marinade and boil over a medium-high heat until reduced by half, then strain and set aside.
  6. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the rind from the orange and half the lemon in long pieces. Cut the pieces into thin julienne strips.
  7. Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil over a high heat and add the orange and lemon strips. Simmer them for 5 minutes, then drain and rinse under cold running water.
  8. Squeeze the juice of the orange into a medium saucepan. Add the jelly and cook over a low heat until melted, then stir in the port or Madeira and the reduced marinade and simmer gently for 10 minutes.
  9. Stir the blended cornflour mixture into the marinade and cook, stirring frequently, until the sauce is slightly thickened.
  10. Add the vinegar and the orange and lemon strips and simmer for a further 2-3 minutes. Keep warm, stirring occasionally.
  11. Transfer the meat to a board and stand, loosely covered with foil for 10 minutes before carving. Garnish with herbs and serve with the sauce and French Scalloped Potatoes.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Source: French Delicious Classic Cuisine Made Easy


Today’s Comic

Snails Bourguignon

Ingredients

48 large snails
rock salt
vinegar
flour
dry white wine
1 carrot and 1 onion sliced together
1 shallot, chopped
garlic to taste, peeled
1 bouquet garni
peppercorns
parsley sprigs to garnish

stuffing

2 cups butter, softened
1 tablespoon shallot or onion, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1 pinch each pepper and spices

Method

  1. You can now buy canned snails, already cleaned and prepared. accompanied by clean empty shells. and ready to cook.
  2. If, however, you choose to use fresh snails, there must be lengthy preparations. First, the snails must be left to disgorge for 2-3 days in a container where they can get enough air, but from which they cannot escape. If the snails are bought live in a shop, this has usually been done.
  3. Dip the snails in plenty of cold water and stir well to rid the shells of the diaphragm and particles of earth. Put the washed snails in a pan containing rock salt, vinegar, and a little flour. Let them disgorge for 2-3 hours, shaking the pan occasionally.
  4. Wash once more in running water. Put the snails in a large pan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil on low heat. Skim the scum. and boil on high heat for 8 minutes. Lift the snails out, drain and put in cold water for a moment. Put them back in a pan, and cover with equal parts of water and white wine. Add rock salt (I tablespoon for 1 quart of liquid), the carrots and onions, shallot, bouquet garni, and garlic cloves, and peppercorns to taste. Bring to a boil on a moderate heat, and continue cooking for 2-3-1/2 hours, according to the size of the snails.
  5. When cooked put them in a sieve to drain. Remove snails from shells, and remove the black part at the end of the helix. Wash the shells thoroughly in warm water, and dry in the oven.
  6. To make the stuffing, blend together the butter, chopped shallots or onion, crushed garlic, parsley, salt, pepper and spices.
  7. Put some of this mixture at the bottom of each empty shell, put in the snail, and seal the shell with more of the mixture, pressing it down firmly.
  8. Arrange the shells, open side up, on special snail dishes (escargotiéres), or on ovenproof dishes filled with a layer of rock salt, and bake in a hot oven (425°F) for 5 minutes. Garnish with parsley sprigs before serving.

Makes 8 servings.

Source: The Cook’s Book


Today’s Comic

Venison with Blackberry Gravy

Ingredients

600 g piece of venison tenderloin
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp butter, plus extra to finish the gravy
1 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
4 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into chunks
1 chicken or vegetable stock cube
30 g butter
1 tsp cumin seeds
500 g Brussels sprouts, peeled and trimmed salt and pepper

Blackberry Gravy

1 tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
1 cup beef stock
1-2 tbsp rowan or red currant jelly
2 garlic cloves, crushed
200 g blackberries
3/4 cup red wine

Method

  1. To make the blackberry gravy, put all the gravy ingredients in a large, heavy-based pan and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for about 20 minutes until reduced and the blackberries are soft, and then press through a sieve into a clean pan.
  2. Continue to reduce the sauce for about 5 minutes, tasting as you go. It should have a lovely sweet and sour tang, so add more jelly if you think it needs it. Set aside.
  3. Take the meat out of the fridge 30 minutes before cooking and pat dry with kitchen paper.
  4. Place the parsnips and stock cube in a large pan of water and bring to the boil. Simmer for about 15 minutes until good and tender, then drain and mash, adding about half the butter and some seasoning.
  5. Toast the cumin seeds in a dry frying pan, crush lightly and stir into your mash. Keep warm.
  6. Boil or steam Brussels sprouts for around 8-10 minutes.
  7. To cooking the venison, heat the oil and butter in a large frying pan until it stops sizzling. Season the venison all over and then add to the hot pan. Cook for about 4-6 minutes on each side over a medium-high heat until nicely caramelised on the outside. Venison is best served rare to medium. Cook 6 more minutes for medium. Baste the loin occasionally with the oil and butter. Remove from the pan and transfer to a plate to rest for a few minutes, covered with foil.
  8. Drain the sprouts and toss in the remaining butter with some salt and pepper.
  9. Reheat the gravy, whisking a wee knob of butter into it to add a bit of shine. Slice the venison and place them on plates. Scatter with parsley and serve with the gravy and vegetables.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: My Family Kitchen