Sunday, April 26, 2020

2020 52 Recipe Challenge

Steak Oscar, Recipe Number 7
The 52 recipe challenge is way of bringing together our friends far and wide who love to cook and share their successes and failures in the kitchen. The challenge; to make 52 new recipes in a single year. This is our ninth year of sharing food, recipes, kitchen catastrophes, and culinary creativity with friends far and wide. Our Facebook group, which started with 7 people, is now over 225 foodies. It is an invite group, so everyone is connected to someone in the group, but after 9 years, there are a bunch of participants who I don't know at all- a community of people connected by a desire to cook great meals at home. The group grew over two dozen members in March 2020 as many people were forced to cook more and learn ingredient substitutions due to COVID-19 Stay at Home Orders.  

2020 Top 5
  1. Vietnamese Stir-Fried Sweet Shrimp (19): Covid shut down Vietnam, and cancelled our trip to visit family there. On the day we were supposed to fly out, we made a Vietnemese meal. The discovery of this recipe is bittersweet, but it was the best new recipe of the year. Easy and Delicious. 
  2. Sourdough Crackers (37): Like so many families in Covid quarantine, we began a sourdough starter. The weekly discard felt so wasteful, and another 52 recipe challenge friend posted this sourdough discard recipe. Amazing. Especially with Trader Joe's Everything Bagel seasoning. It's now a weekly staple.
  3. Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Popper Stuffed Chicken (48): We made grilled jalapeno poppers and had way too many leftovers. What to do with them. Stuff them in a chicken and wrap that in bacon and stuff your face. Delicious. We made too many of those too, and vacu-sealed those leftovers and had midweek sous vide leftovers on a busy night.
  4. Scallops with Avocado Salsa (30): This was easy and delicious. The avocados really round out the dish beautifully. Great way to respond to the "oh my goodness, the avocados are about to go bad" dilemma. 
  5. Mini Cheesecakes (46): Incredibly delicious. Super easy. Cheesecake. 
Honorable Mentions
  • Sourdough Starter (39): We named her "Miss Cleo." This was our new Covid pet to keep alive. She's still kicking. 
  • Vietnamese Fried Rice (18): Excellent with the number one recipe of the year, the Vietnamese Stir-Fried Sweet Shrimp. Excellent pairing.
  • Fried Pickles (55): We missed attending fairs, and these helped subdue the craving. A decent substitute for Covid shutting down the Minnesota State Fair.
  • Creamy Confetti Corn (54): Confession- I hate creamed corn. It's so many calories for something that's frankly so boring. This recipe doesn't solve the calorie issue, but it's definitely not boring. Great holiday side dish.
  • Bourbon Glazed Pork Chops (33): Quick. Easy. Tasty. Double the sauce, it's delicious.
  • Love at First Sight Chocolate Cake (22): Best chocolate cake we've ever made. We don't make cake often and remember why, we ate the whole thing.

  1. Immersion Blender Hollandaise Sauce +
  2. Spicy Whiskey BBQ Sliders  +(2012 re-do, must add to rotation!)
  3. Flourless Chocolate Torte
  4. Mini Corn Dog Bites
  5. Ranch Seasoning Mix
  6. Cold Crab Dip -
  7. Steak Oscar
  8. Cocktail Sauce
  9. Sous Vide Shrimp +
  10. Remoulade +
  11. Copycat Chipotle Barbacoa +
  12. Alton Brown Pancakes +
  13. Soft Pretzels + (2016 re-do, made into buns instead!)
  14. Potato Chip Omelet
  15. Puff Pastry Croissants
  16. English Muffins -
  17. Italian Herb Bread +
  18. Vietnamese Fried Rice +
  19. Vietnamese Stir-Fried Sweet Shrimp ++
  20. Pistolet +
  21. Yellow Birthday Cupcakes 
  22. Love at First Sight Chocolate Cake +
  23. Crunchy Tocino
  24. Egg Noodles +
  25. Brown Butter Banana Bread +
  26. Bacon Peanut Butter Banana Bread +
  27. Cedar Plank Salmon +
  28. Perfect Pot Roast
  29. Mignonette Sauce +
  30. Scallops with Avocado Salsa ++
  31. Grilled Marinated Swordfish +
  32. Crispy Shredded Hashbrowns +
  33. Bourbon Glazed Pork Chops +
  34. Garlic Butter Shrimp Scampi +
  35. Hot Bacon Vinaigrette
  36. Dijon and Herbs Grilled Chicken Thighs +
  37. Sourdough Crackers ++
  38. Sourdough Starter +
  39. Remoulade 
  40. Maryland Crab Cake -
  41. Strawberry Shortcake
  42. Miso-y Grilled Potatoes +
  43. Lacquered Ribeye
  44. General Tso Sauce
  45. Rhubarb Crème Brulee -
  46. Mini Cheesecakes ++
  47. Crockpot Shredded Beef
  48. Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Popper Stuffed Chicken ++
  49. Croutons
  50. Crock Pot Breakfast Potatoes ---
  51. Aged Eggnog + (2016 re-do, worth the effort)
  52. Haitian Chicken +
  53. Creamed Spinach
  54. Creamy Confetti Corn +
  55. Fried Pickles +
  56. Beer Battered Cheese Curds +
  57. Creamy Cole Slaw Dressing +
  58. Shredded Brussels Sprouts +
  59. Vitamix Béarnaise Sauce (2016 re-do)

Sunday, January 20, 2019

2019 52 Recipe Challenge

The 52 recipe challenge is way of bringing together our friends far and wide who love to cook and share their successes and failures in the kitchen. The challenge; to make 52 new recipes in a single year. This is our eight year of sharing food, recipes, kitchen catastrophes, and culinary creativity with friends far and wide. Our Facebook group, which started with 7 people, is now over 200 foodies.

2019 Top 5
  1. Instant Pot Pork Carnitas (18): This was delicious, although something about the instant pot really brought out the heat. Nice and spicy! We put the leftovers on top of a salad. Yum. The rest of the leftovers will be served with eggs for a Mexican breakfast. Highly recommend.
  2. Creamed Spinach (56): This is now our go-to creamed spinach. Everyone raved about it at Christmas dinner, and it is everything you can get in a fine steakhouse and more.
  3. Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies (28): 
  4. Kaiser Rolls (7): This triggered nostalgia in the New York born and bread (get it). These Kaiser Rolls were exactly what you get when you order a "Sausage Egg and Cheese with salt, pepper, butter sandwich" at the deli.
  5. Perfect Prime Rib (52): Reverse Sear Prime Rib. The smallest bone-in prime rib roast they had at Costco was 19.5 lbs... so why not!This turned out great, even though I had to play with the temp (still took 7+ hours). The 500 degree oven didn't provide perfect results in crisping up the outside, but my 1800 degree broiler helped! Next time I'll prep the grill with natural hot burning charcoal to finish. Sous vide and reverse sear is the only way I'm making steaks here on out!
Honorable Mention

  • Buffalo Chicken Dip (39): Solid buffalo dip.
  • Chinese Broccoli with Garlic Sauce (25): Good and simple.
  • Fried Rice (42): Deviated somewhat from this (used hoisin instead of oyster sauce, added pork), but the basics of how to cook, what order to cook, using cold rice, and using butter and sesame oil are good reminders/guidelines. This turned out great.
  • Brussels Sprout Gratin (50): This was good, I would kick up the sage a little next time, and consider adding some fresh thyme as well. The crust is really good
  • Italian Chicago Beef Sandwich (49): Chicago Italian Beef Sandwiches. Used a 3 lb round, might do sirloin next time. Regardless, came out very tasty. It was critical that I had a meat slicer to slice thin and keep it tender (enough). I did broth instead of bouillon... no regrets. The rub was excellent, may use for other beef roasts.

  1. Everything Bagel Breakfast Casserole (+ when doubling eggs)
  2. Top the Tater Dip +
  3. Easy Dill Dip -
  4. Ham Salad
  5. Sous Vide Scallops +
  6. Aloha Bread
  7. Kaiser Rolls +++
  8. Garlic Confit
  9. Garlicky Skillet Greens with Ham
  10. Pressure Cooker Caramelized Onions - - - - - 
  11. Crunchy French Toast
  12. Onion Soup Mix +
  13. Coca-Cola Pot Roast+
  14. Coca-Cola Cake
  15. Coca-Cola Cheese Dip -
  16. Vitamix Avocado Hollandaise Sauce
  17. Crock Pot Chicken Carnitas
  18. Instant Pot Pork Carnitas ++
  19. Spicy Lime and Jalapeno Cole Slaw +
  20. Peanut Chicken Wings +
  21. Grilled Herb Potatoes ++
  22. Pork Carnitas 
  23. Instant Pot Hoisin Ribs +
  24. Shrimp Chow Fun +
  25. Chinese Broccoli in Garlic Sauce ++
  26. Chairman Mao's Red Braise Pork Belly +
  27. Bourbon Chocolate Chip Cookies -
  28. Super Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies +
  29. Ham Salad in Endive Cups
  30. Steak Salad with Horseradish Dressing
  31. Cold Crab Dip
  32. Loaded Tater Tot Bites
  33. Sabrett Hot Dog Onions +
  34. Balsamic Bruschetta -
  35. Basic Neapolitan Pizza Dough +
  36. Grilled Steak Salad with Creamy Vinaigrette
  37. Light and Fluffy Pancakes
  38. Cucumber Tomato Salad
  39. Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Dip +
  40. Foolproof Bearnaise Sauce
  41. Huevos Rancheros
  42. Fried Rice +
  43. Peanut Butter Dog Treats
  44. Sheet Pan Potato Hash -
  45. Tequila Lime Slaw
  46. Skirt Steak with Sauce
  47. Italian Chicago Beef Sandwich +
  48. Crispy Potatoes with Garlic Parmesan Butter
  49. Rack of Lamb
  50. Brussels Sprout Gratin +
  51. Quick BBQ Sauce
  52. Perfect Prime Rib +

  53. Bonus!

Thursday, June 07, 2018

2018 52 Recipe Challenge

The 52 recipe challenge is way of bringing together our friends far and wide who love to cook and share their successes and failures in the kitchen. The challenge; to make 52 new recipes in a single year. This is our seventh year of sharing food, recipes, kitchen catastrophes, and culinary creativity with friends far and wide.

2018 Top 5
Rosemary Focaccia Stuffing

  1. Zinfandel Braised Short Ribs: This is an all-time best recipe. It is a heart attack in a pot, and worth every artery clogging bite. Make enough for leftovers, which taste amazing in a breakfast hash, mac and cheese, or just reheated. (#51)
  2. Bangers and Mash Casserole: What's not to love about mashed potatoes and bratwurst, but when you combine them with caramelized onions and gravy, magic happens. Bring this to a pot luck and you'll be an instant star. (#24)
  3. Rosemary Focaccia Stuffing: Tired of the same old boring stuffing that's been on the Thanksgiving table for generations? This recipe is so good even the most ardent traditionalists will love the change. (#49)
  4. French Silk Pie in a Jar: Way easier than making real french silk pie, tastes just as good. (#29)
  5. Alton Brown's Buffalo Wings: All the crisp of a fried wing without actually frying them. They take a little bit more time than just throwing wings in the oven, but worth it. (#8)

Honorable Mention

  • Crock Pot Pulled Pork: Dry-brining is key, but it is time well spent. This is delicious, easy, and versatile.  (#39)
  • Creamed Spinach: The simplicity of this recipe, and the ability to "set it and forget it" makes this a keeper. It's nice to have something delicious and easy for holiday gatherings. (#48)
  • Caesar Salad Dressing: Easy, go-to creamy Caesar dressing. (#17)
  • Gougeres: Very easy way to impress your guests. (#6)

  1. Chevre with Herbs, Olive Oil, and Lemon Zest +
  2. Sauteed Lamb Chops with Herbs de Provence +
  3. Baked Brie -
  4. Instant Pot Fish Stock
  5. Bouillabaise
  6. Gougeres (Cheese Puffs) +
  7. Crock Pot Apple Crisp
  8. Alton Brown's Buffalo Wings +
  9. Frozen Chocolate Mousse (Marquise Au Chocolat) +
  10. Crab Dip
  11. Neapolitan Pizza Dough
  12. Ranch Dip
  13. Hot Bacon Dressing
  14. Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
  15. Couscous with Seven Vegetables
  16. Sesame Semolina Lunetta
  17. Caesar Salad Dressing
  18. Crab and Artichoke Dip +
  19. Instant Pot General Tso's Chicken 
  20. Hoisin Sauce +
  21. One-Dish Baked Chicken with Olives and Tomatoes -
  22. NYT Giant Crinkled Chocolate Chip Cookies
  23. Joy's Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
  24. Bangers and Mash Casserole +
  25. Cheddar Cheese Scone -
  26. Grilled Short Ribs
  27. Bitter Greens with Crispy Shallots -
  28. Lunettas +
  29. French Silk Pie in a Jar +
  30. Quick Bread -
  31. Cucumber Salad
  32. Herb Marinated Flank Steak +
  33. Chopped Caprese Salad +
  34. Mustard and Tarragon Grilled Chicken +
  35. German Potato Salad +
  36. Watermelon and Tomato Salad +
  37. Herbed Potato Salad +
  38. Braised Pot Roast +
  39. Slow Cooker Pulled Pork +
  40. Three Cheese Artichoke Dip +
  41. Reverse Sear Ribeye +
  42. Carrot Oatmeal Muffins -
  43. Grilled Chicken Drumsticks with Savory Caramel -
  44. Winter Squash Panzanella +
  45. Braised Chicken Thighs with Squash and Greens +
  46. Pasta with Butternut Squash Sauce
  47. Hasselbeck Potatoes
  48. Crock Pot Creamed Spinach +
  49. Rosemary Focaccia Stuffing ++
  50. Roasted Delicata Squash and Onions +
  51. Zinfandel Braised Short Ribs ++
  52. Perfect Apple Pie -