Recipe | Pinot Noir Honey Sage Brisket

To be completely honest, I’m not a full-blooded vegetarian.  Every now and then, there is a recipe that brings me back to the omnivore side of the dinner table for a few bites when ethically farmed grass-fed meat is served and this is one of them.

I stumbled upon this very accidentally on a day when I had zero desire to cook and every desire to do absolutely nothing productive all day long.  I wasn’t feeling particularly creative that day but I had this brisket from my farm share that I HAD to make.  What in a proverbial hot place do I do with a brisket?  The day was just not looking good for me.  I had a brisket that I had no idea what to do with, a bottle of Pinot Noir that I had no idea what to do with, and some PHENOMENAL honey that I wanted to put on everything I ate.  (I got it from a 12-year-old beekeeper at a farmer’s market.  The girl may only be 12 but she makes the best honey I’ve ever had.)  Garlic and onion go with everything and I had more sage than I had anything else.  I dumped it all in my slow cooker and hoped for the best.  Sometimes, these things just work themselves out.  This was that day.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have any pinor noir left by the time dinner rolled around because I accidentally drank it all while watching movies with The Cop all afternoon.  I was happy stealing nips here and there on movie breaks but the next thing I knew there weren’t many nips left, and I was slovenly sprawled out on the couch watching Despicable Me (for what had to be the 32nd time in two months) and alternating between my “serious” Eastern European accent and squealing how much I wanted my very own minion.  It was a banner day.

The only thing I want out of this recipe is an oven option.  I’m not the biggest fan of the slow cooker because I think I get better flavor and texture out of my oven at a very low temperature using an enameled Dutch oven, but this dish certainly does not lack in tastiness.  I’ve been obsessing over the idea so you can expect an update with oven directions in the coming months.  Until then, I hope you enjoy.  xoxo Jamie

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Posted in Beef, Slow Cooker | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

I Rule

I am pretty darn proud of myself today.  I’ve only really gotten into baking in the last year and I’ve come a long way.  Baking is science and I have a long love/hate history with science.  Yes, making a cake taste good is an art, but you won’t get a cake in the first place unless you adhere to scientific principals of cake-making.  Today, I made my first cake from a recipe that I made myself and it turned out pretty good.  I rule.  It needs a few minor modifications to make exactly what I am looking for but did I mention that I made the recipe for a cake on my own and it turned out pretty good?  Yes, I made the recipe up.  By.  My.  Self.  (Note: For once in my life, I don’t really care if that last sentence was even remotely grammatically correct because I baked a cake from my own recipe that I made up by myself and it was good.)

Oh, sorry… back to the cake.  (I rule.)  I made an olive oil cake.  I’ve been wanting to make one for months, but never got around to it today until I saw a facebook status update from a friend that she was in the mood to bake.  I thought, “Hey, I’m in the mood to bake.  I’ll bake, too.”  Then I realized that I’ve never actually been in a mood to bake.  I’ve always baked for a reason (a party, a holiday, a family member’s birthday, etc.) but today I had no reason.  Ambition would make up the difference.  It struck me that it was the perfect time to make an olive oil cake.  I put my made-up recipe to the test.  I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it, but it turned out well.

I shoved a piece of cake in The Cop’s mouth as his foot crossed the threshold and before he even had a chance to say hello after arriving home from work.  The look on his face said it all: it was good.  Shortly after, a friend walked through the door and I shoved a piece of cake in her mouth before she could get a hello out too.  She was pleased with the cake as well.  Looks like I’m very close to a win with a recipe I made all by myself mind you.  You know, in case you didn’t know.

Posted in First Attempts, Recipe Development | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Fudge, Feuds, and My Poor Husband

I am guessing that horse poop tastes worse that the fudge I bought at Shaw’s today but I’ve never had horse poop so I could be wrong.  I was expecting your typical grocery store fudge but a little piece would be perfect to satisfy my sweet tooth.  What I got was rubber; nasty, bland, with a distinct chemical taste rubber that wasn’t even sweet.  It had a texture like melted gum.  I had to brush my teeth.  I did what I always do in these moments: I passed it off to my husband under the pretense that I just wanted to share because I love him.  The Cop was immediately suspicious.  He’s been here before.  I giggled.  The only thing that makes a crappy food experience better for me is conning him into eating it too because food misery loves company.  Besides, it gives us lots to talk about.  That’s how you keep a marriage strong, you know.

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Posted in Family, Memoir | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments