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Failed Lasagna, Awesome Brownies

So, I decided that I wanted to try this lasagna recipe that looked amazing in photos and in theory. It turned out to be not so awesome, even though it looked exactly like the pics from the website. A little word to the wise: Just use cheese. Beschamel sauce is shitty and makes the entire lasagna taste like cooked milk (think pudding without the sweetness from flavorings)
The recipe can be found here (maybe you can try it and it will come out better?): Mediterranean Greek Vegetarian Lasagna

Pictures!

Really good greek salad! 😀

I made the brownies before I made the Lasagna but I wanted to get that abomination out of the way in the beginning of the post. These have to be some of the best brownies ever and I totally overcooked them. I used my brownie pan that has the insert but its only an 8×8 pan and the recipe called for a 9×13 pan. I ended up overcooking the outside brownies while the insides were still a bit raw. They still taste awesome though. I could not find any instant espresso powder so I got some instant coffee instead. It worked the way it was supposed to and the brownies tasted rich and delicious. These brownies were recommended by a Shacker (multisync)and his girlfriend, who writes a fantastic food blog called Amy Blogs Chow I had promised them I would make the brownies this past weekend and just never got around to it. I was so happy that I made them last night because after that failed lasagna, I needed the pick-me-up that only chocolate can provide 😀 The recipe originally came from BAKED in Brooklyn, NY (BakedNYC.com) and the recipe can be found HERE.

Pictures!

My webcam setup while waiting for the chocolate to melt

So the brownies and salad came out awesome but the lasagna was an EPIC FAIL. I hate when that happens 😦 I don’t know what to do with all this leftover lasagna. I don’t want to give it to anyone because it’s so bad.

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Posted by on January 8, 2010 in General Food, Meals!, The Bakery!

 

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The Best Steak EVER

So, by special request, I made a steak tonight. A friend of mine from the IRC (Hi, podman405!!) asked me if I wanted to make a steak tonight for dinner and he would follow the same recipe. At the end of the night, we would see whose steak looked better. I don’t mean to toot my own horn but damn that steak was good.

My steak was a .72lbs NY Strip. It was the second smallest one in the case. We followed the directions on the food network’s bastard child website http://www.food2.com for the Perfect Steak in a Skillet.

Ingredients:

New York strip steak, room temperature
Fresh ground pepper (not too fine)
Sea salt or kosher salt
Canola oil (I used about 3 Tbsp)
1 tablespoon butter
3 cloves garlic, unpeeled
A few sprigs fresh thyme
Special Equipment: seasoned cast iron skillet (10 inches in diameter)
*Instead of salt and pepper I used Montreal Steak Seasoning. I know this is a dangerous thing because the garlic and other spices in the mix can burn fast but it worked out for me this time*

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Coat the steak with pepper and then with a heavy sprinkling of salt. Heat the cast iron skillet until extremely hot (approximately 10 minutes). Add oil to the pan. Sear the steak on the first side 1 to 2 minutes until it develops a nice crust. Flip it, baste it with the oil, top with butter, garlic and thyme and place in the oven. Check every 2 minutes; cook to desired temperature *I cooked mine in the oven for 3 minutes total and it was PERFECT* Let the meat rest until the juices redistribute and slice across the grain on a slight bias. *About 5 minutes resting time*

Chef’s Note: “Warning: Please heat your pan cautiously. 10 minutes or under will suffice. Any longer and the oil could catch fire! Have a fire extinguisher ready, just in case.” <—-This is good advice!! It tends to smoke a little.

I also made my garlic mushrooms and a salad to go along with it. OK! Pics!

Pics of podman405’s steak can be found here: STEAKS!

 
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Posted by on August 17, 2009 in General Food, Meals!

 

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Salad Swords and Chicken Pizzas

I made some awesome pizza and salad for dinner tonight! My friends all loved it and thought it was pretty creative. I got the recipes from my Rachael Ray 2,4,6,8 Great Meals for Couples and Crowds cookbook. A word of warning tho: The skewers will most likely be used as swords for most of the dinner! XD

Salad on a Stick
Serves 4

1/2 cup Heavy Cream (some 2% milk to thin it out)
1 5.2oz container of garlic and herb cheese (I used Boursin)
Salt and Pepper
1 green or red bell pepper, cubed
1 english cucumber, cubed
1/2 pint grape tomatoes
4 ribs of celery, cut into 1inch pieces
2 1-inch thick pieces of Genoa salami, cubed
4 wooden skewers (one per person)

Blend together the cream and boursin cheese. Pour into dipping dish and season the dressing with salt and pepper. (if necessary, thin the dressing with some milk – I needed to so that it would be the consistency of Ranch dressing) Place the dip on the platter. Arrange the veggies and salami on the platter with 4 bamboo skewers. Use the skewers to spear the salami and veggies, stacking them up one mouthful at a time. Dip each skewer in the dressing as you eat, but don’t double dip, please!

Chicken Parm Pizza
Serves 4

Flour or cornmeal for handling the dough
1 pizza dough, store bought or from your favorite pizzeria (I got mine from Fresh&Easy)
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 pound ground chicken ( I bought 20oz of Ground Turkey because it was the same price for more at the store – this allowed me to make 2 pizzas)
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
Salt and black pepper
Handful fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
A couple pinches of red pepper flakes
A couple pinches of dried oregano
1 8oz can tomato sauce (I used a 15oz can + an 8oz can in mine)
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups Provolone cheese (I bought already grated mozzarella cheese – 4 cups and used about 3)
5-6 fresh basil leaves, torn

Preheat the oven to 425F.

Coat your hands and the work surface in flour or cornmeal. Using your hands, form a pizza shape with the dough. Place the pizza on a pizza baking tray and prick the dough with a fork in several spots. Drizzle a little bit of EVOO over the dough and place in the oven for 10 minutes. (I put it on the back side of a cookie sheet and baked it on that so it would be easy to slide off)

Meanwhile, heat a deep skillet over medium high heat with the 2 tablespoons of EVOO. Add the meat and brown it, breaking it up with a wooden spoon. To the browned meat, add the garlic and onions and season them with salt and pepper. Cook them together for 5-6 minutes, then add the parsley, red pepper flakes, oregano, and tomato sauce. Heat the sauce through.

Remove the pizza from the oven after 10 minutes and top it with the meat sauce and then scatter the cheeses over it. Return it to the oven until the cheese is bubbly, another 10 minutes or so. Top the pizza with shredded basil, cut and serve.

PICS!!

I hope you guys try this one. It is pretty easy and ohh so tasty!

Bonus Pic of the cherry cupcakes I made for a friend of Carter’s:

 
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Posted by on July 25, 2009 in General Food, Meals!

 

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