Archive for the ‘Beef’ Category

Three Meat Stuffed Italian Banana Peppers

Fall is here in the ‘Burgh which means we have an abundance of banana peppers! Today I’m taking the classic stuffed banana pepper and putting an Italian spin on the meat filling and using my Spicy Banana Pepper sauce as well! Perfect for dinner now and dinner later (freezer-friendly!)

Oh Fall how I love you. The cooler weather, hoodies, farmer’s markets with Fall fruits and vegetables and comfort food. For me I’m all about “stocking up” for the winter food-wise. I’ll make huge batches of soups  or chili for both dinner and the freezer. Pans of lasagna or stuffed shells make great freezer meals and then stuffed “stuff”. Growing up this time of year, early October was our “busy” season in the house. Mom was a canning madwoman between apple sauce, apple chutney, 87 million stuffed cabbages and pretty much everything else she could stuff. She’d regular stuffed green peppers (which I HATED – still do actually) for the family and my one brother she’d make stuffed banana peppers.

First, I cannot stand green peppers. They taste complete different from red/orange/yellow peppers.. they are more bitter. And of course Mom never grew the ‘fancy’ peppers. LOL And for the banana peppers my brother would get those from a neighbor and only he would eat them. I never had them as I was a wuss and thought they were hot. Yeah I know, idiot. LOL

Italian Meat Stuffed Banana Peppers

It wasn’t until years later did I try one at a restaurant and was like “Whoa!  These are awesome!”. Now it did take me a few tries to get the heat level right as I will tell you this, the first time I made them they were so hot that I actually had a blister form in the roof of my mouth!

That is not these. *smile*
These have just a hint of heat with amazing Italian flavors!

Sheet Pan Smoked Kielbasa with Herbed Potatoes and Green Beans

Get your deliciousness on with this one pan meal! Sheet Pan Smoked Kielbasa, potatoes and green beans make up a delicious dinner in no time plus it’s perfect for weekly meal prep…or when you only want to wash one dish!

So with my really being limited to what I can and cannot do in the kitchen, I have to rely on Mr. Fantabulous to do most of the cooking. And since I’m 1-armed if you will he’s also the one that has to do the dishes. Sure we have a brand new dishwasher but we rarely use it. I know, we’re weird. Since he’s bearing the brunt of all of the house work, yard work and construction stuff I try to keep dinner easy as possible while delicious.

When we were at the store he spied fresh green beans. Now this man loves these things. I mean he’ll eat them raw. Now I like many vegetables raw, green beans are not one of them. Growing up he would have loved being in my parents garden with me as one of my jobs was to pick the beans. And having 41 acres, we grew A LOT of beans. Now when I make green beans I tend to go to one of my all time favorite Green Beans recipe – Grown Up Green Beans. It takes all of the elements of that Thanksgiving green bean casserole but makes it all fancy schmancy. And no canned soup. Yes, it’s ok in a pinch but please, make homemade!

Sheet Pan Smoked Kielbasa, potatoes and green beans

Anyway, there was no way I could ask Mr. Fantabulous to make that as, while it’s not hard or complicated, he’s still not a huge fan of cooking. Eating yes; cooking no. lol While we were shopping I picked up some potatoes and kielbasa just because those are quick and easy meals. And that’s when it hit me – Sheet Pan dinner.

Sheet pan dinners are super easy and delicious!

Mom’s Classic Stuffed Cabbage Rolls

No summer cookout is complete without a tray of stuffed cabbages! Tender cabbage leaves stuffed with rice, seasoned ground meats and a rich tomato sauce make this the perfect summer comfort food. Plus these freeze beautifully!’

This dish, God this dish brings back so many childhood memories that I literally sat here for 30 minutes in a daze just remembering some of them. Like there was the time we were harvesting cabbages from our garden and we each got to pick a single plant that we were in charge of to take care of. Whoever grew the biggest cabbage won. The prize was Mom would cook our favorite dessert to go with her famous stuffed cabbages. That summer I ended up winning. This cabbage was so huge that I couldn’t lift it. I know I have a picture of me trying to hold it on my lap. I’ll dig it out to share the pic once my arm is better.

Then there are the countless memories where our kitchen was soooooooooooooo hot (we didn’t have AC growing up and we only had window fans) and Mom had 3 large canning pots on the stove with boiling water making hundreds of stuffed cabbages. I can still remember that hot cabbage smell and hot/wet air in the kitchen. Dad would use the tongs to pull out the leaves, put them in the colander and my Mom, sister and I would each trim the stems.

When Mom made stuffed cabbages it was never just a pan for dinner or just enough for a single meal. Oh no, not in my house. You made enough for dinner, leftovers, enough for company to take some home and enough for the freezer. Mom’s kitchen and cooking style are you cook in bulk and never, ever waste anything.

Summer means cookouts, gatherings and stuffed cabbages!

Delicious Pressure Cooker Beef Barbacoa

Love been barbacoa but hate how long it takes to make?  What if I told you that you could make DELICIOUS beef barbacoa in a fraction of the time when you use a pressure cooker!  This is true one-pot cooking at it’s finest!

Oh barbacoa how I love you… almost as much as I love pressure cooking in general. Ever since I had the mother of all nachos I became a HUGE barbacoa lover. Sure I’ve had it at that fast food chain quasi-mexican place (is it even considered Mexican?) but it was just ‘meh’. But when I had it at that one Tex Mex place I was in love. I shared my Chicken Barbacoa pressure cooker recipe and you guys went nuts over it. I’m not sure which you loved more – the flavors or the fact that it only took 10 minutes. LOL  But you loved it and that’s what matters to me.

Now this recipe takes more than 10 minutes as beef always takes longer in the pressure cooker than chicken. But trust me, it’s well worth it and so friggen good!   I’m actually making up a huge pot of it and putting it all in the freezer. I want to make sure both Mr. Fantabulous and I have food to eat while I’m out having surgery.  But who knows maybe he’ll surprise me and actually make a pot on his own. *wink*

Seriously you need to make this recipe!

Honey Garlic Broiled Flank Steak

By marinating this flank steak overnight you’ll tenderize it to the point it’ll just slice like buttah when you serve it!  Add some sauteed onions and peppers along with some killer Chimichurri sauce and you have one killer recipe!

So if you recall I was on this huge Chimichurri kick putting it on everything. Now I know you hate cilantro (what is wrong with you people who you hate it???) but even if you hate it you STILL need to make this dish. Skip the chimi and go with the steak with some avocado crema or salsa.  This marinated flank steak is done in minutes and seriously worth every. single. delicious. bite. Flank or Skirt steak are those 2 pieces of beef that so many people fail at making. I get it, it’s a tough piece of meat to get tender but I’m telling you what guys, if you follow my recipe and marinate it for 12-24 hours it’ll melt like buttah when you slice it.

The first time I ever tried to make flank steak at home was after a few days after I had gone to Chi-Chi’s for the first time. That steak for the fajitas was so tender. And me thinking that it was no big deal, as in a steak is a steak is a steak mentality just tossed some seasoning on it and pan fried it.  What I managed to do was turn a pretty pricey cut of beef into leather within minutes. I mean it looked gorgeous but folks this thing was so tough that it was like gnawing on jerky that didn’t break down… ever!

After that, I tried a few more times but never was successful. Then I decided to educate myself on this cut of beef. What made it so different from the other cuts of steak I mastered? I mean I have the #1 recipe on the net for how to cook the best damn new york strip steak in the world, how could I keep failing?  So to the internet, I went (and to a few local Mexican restaurants and the butcher shop).
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