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588 article submissions by the ChefTalk.com community.

Slow Cooker Carnitas

  • by PeteModerator

  It’s been awhile since I spoke of my love of the slow cooker, AKA Crock Pot. In my early days as a chef, I used to look down on these gadgets, associating them with bad casseroles and 1970’s cooking. I quickly changed my tune though when I started playing with them and realized what great vessels they were for slowly braising all sorts of meats and dishes. It allows me to start a dish in the morning, before work, making for a quick but tasty dinner soon after I get home.   While you do most of the cooking, for this dish, in the slow cooker, it does need to be... read more

Chinese Bao-Breathing Life into Leftovers

  • by PeteModerator

  My wife will tell you that I’m not a big fan of leftovers. It’s true, while I don’t hate leftovers, I am usually not a fan of eating something 2 or 3 days in a row. I will agree that certain things are definitely better the second or third day. Soups, stews, and most braised dishes fall squarely into this category. And who can resist a meatloaf sandwich the day after? Or a roast turkey sandwich the day after Thanksgiving? But these are the exceptions. To really get excited about leftovers, I have to come up with a whole new way to disguise and serve them.   Not... read more

Cowboy Candy-Sweet Pickled Jalapenos

  • by PeteModerator

  The other week, at one of the local farmer’s markets I got a really good deal on some red and green jalapenos. I was excited as one of the things I wanted to can this year was a couple of jars of Cowboy Candy-sweet pickled jalapeno slices. These spicy-sweet treats have become quite popular over the last couple of years and as a fan of spicy foods I’ve enjoyed my fair share, but had yet to make my own. The Internet if full of recipes for Cowboy Candy, most of which seem to be people sharing the same recipe over and over. I took the basic recipe I found and revamped... read more

Antipasto Panini

  • by PeteModerator

  America has a passion for grilled cheese sandwiches. From the standard home fare of American cheese stuffed between white bread to the exotic creations dreamt up in fine dining establishments across this country, we can’t seem to get enough of this humble sandwich. Of course, in finer dining establishments they aren’t called grilled cheese sandwiches, but rather they are called paninis. No one in their right mind is going to drop $8 or $9 or more for a “grilled cheese”, but give it an Italian name and stuff it with some roasted veggies and Italian cheese and we’ll... read more

An American Classic-Biscuits and Gravy

  • by PeteModerator

  This country is facing a huge problem. Yes, I know, we are facing a lot of problems; the financial crisis, civil unrest, another election where we will have to chose the lesser of 2 evils, etc. The list goes on, but I’m not talking about these front page issues that take up most of our time. I’m talking about something more insidious. An issue that has seemed to have slipped past the media’s attention and yet no one noteworthy has taken up its cause. Yes, I’m talking about the fact that it is getting harder and harder to find a good plate of Biscuits and Gravy... read more

Peanut Butter Banana Pie with Pretzel Crust

  • by PeteModerator

  This past weekend I celebrated my 40th birthday. I wasn’t nearly as traumatic as I thought it would be. Sure, I’ve come to the realization that I’m not as young as I used to be, but I also came to the realization that you are only as old as you feel. I certainly don’t act and feel like I thought 40 year olds act and felt, when I was a teenager.   The weekend was rather low key. No major party, just good times with family. My parents made the trip up from Indiana and my brother and his wife came up from Madison, WI to help me celebrate, and to have our family... read more

Pickled Mushrooms

  • by PeteModerator

  I had a craving for pickled mushrooms yesterday. I’m not sure why as I’m not particularly fond of them. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dislike them. In fact, I am very hard pressed to find a pickled item I don’t like, but I don’t usually find myself saying, “Boy, what I could really go for right now is a bowl of pickled mushrooms!” If I see them on a salad buffet or antipasto display I might grab a couple, and occasionally I will ask for them in a Bloody Mary, but other than that they rarely cross my mind. Needless to say, the craving hit and I found myself lacking in... read more

Italian Inspired Meatloaf

  • by PeteModerator

  Meatloaf just doesn’t get any respect. It has never been able to rise above the ranks of “home cooked meal.” While other comfort foods such as mashed potatoes and mac and cheese have found their ways onto all but the most snobbish of menus, meatloaf hasn’t made many inroads. Sure, it has seen brief moments of popularity, and there are a few chefs out there that regularly menu meatloaf, but on a whole it has never caught on beyond home cooking.   That’s too bad, because meatloaf is one of those infinitely variable dishes. It can be made “old school” like Mom used... read more

The Hurricane-A Classic New Orleans Cocktail

  • by PeteModerator

  On January 1st, I posted about the dish, Hoppin’ John, and how, in many households, it is eaten on New Year’s Day to bring good luck. I could have chosen any number of recipes, from around the world, that are eaten for the same reason- to bring luck in the new year. I think one of the reasons I chose Hoppin’ John is because I’ve been thinking about my time down South for a few weeks. What got me thinking about my time living in Atlanta and New Orleans is the fact that a few weeks ago I got a craving for Hurricanes.   Anyone who has spent any time in New Orleans... read more

Creamy Sage Polenta with Sausage Ragu

  • by PeteModerator

  It’s been cold up here in Wisconsin the last week or so. I thought I was ready for winter, but this cold snap has taken me by surprise and I’ve found myself taking more time than usual to acclimate to the weather. I hate to think that it is because I am getting older.  Whatever the reason, I find myself lying in bed, in the morning, not wanting to get up. Not because I don’t want to go to work, I don’t mind that, but because I am not looking forward to getting into my icy cold car and waiting for it to warm up as I drive to work. I’ve tried to convince the wife to... read more

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