Roasted Beetamatterhorn Hummus

Beet hummus atop one of Liz’s gluten free crackers.

Beet hummus atop one of Liz’s gluten free crackers.

Beets LOVE Whassamatterhorn.
Adapted from
Thug Kitchen’s Party Grub.

INGREDIENTS

1 ½ pounds roasted, skinned beets
1 can chickpeas drained
3 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon Whattamatterhorn

DIRECTIONS
Whip it all up in a food processor or Ninja-style (better).

Compound Butter

Lisa at Photosynthesis in Ames turned us on to compound butter on Thanksgiving. She served it with Parker House rolls…seriously, I thought it was the best part of the meal. It turns out all salts AND sugars make great compound butters! Use them on baked goods, steak, veggies, toast, you name it!

These aren’t ours, but don’t they look lovely?

These aren’t ours, but don’t they look lovely?

INGREDIENTS
1 stick of butter
2 tsp of Saltlickers
Parchment or waxed paper if you’re want a log shape
Fresh herbs if you wish

Let the butter soften at room temp then stir in the spice (and herbs). Place the butter on a sheet of parchment or waxed paper, roll into a log, and chill for at least two hours.

Mark Bittman's Speedy No Knead Bread

“You made bread?” my family will ask whenever I whip up a loaf of Bittman’s bread. This warm magic loaf turns dinner into a meal. I throw in 1 tbsp of Whassamatterhorn or Smoke Licker.

They rip it apart like wolves.

They rip it apart like wolves.

From Mark Bittman in The New York Times

3 cups bread flour
1 packet (1/4 ounce) instant yeast
1 tbsp Whassamatterhorn or Smoke Licker
Oil as needed

DIRECTIONS
Combine flour, yeast and Whassamatterhorn or Smoke Licker in a large bowl. Add 1 1/2 cups water and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest about 4 hours at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.

Lightly oil a work surface and place dough on it; fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest 30 minutes more.

At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6-to-8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under dough and put it into pot, seam side up. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes.

Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack. Serve with Saltlickers’ compound butter!

Das Schöne Fleischloaf

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Translation: The beautiful meatloaf

Add 2 tsp to 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb ground pork. Stir in 1 cup toasted pumpernickel bread crumbs, 2 leeks caramelized in butter, 1/2 cup chopped parsley, 2 tsp Whassamatterhorn, and 1/2 tsp fresh black pepper. Slather it in ketchup if you like it old school. Bake 375 til unraw—about an hour.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

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1 pint of strawberries, trimmed and cut in half
1 lb fresh spinach
1/4 cup slivered red onion
Alliyum or Whassamatterhorn
Fruit, white or champagne vinegar
1/4 c crumbled feta, goat or farmers cheese (optional)
1/2 c chopped toasted walnuts (optional)

Toss Alliyum or Whassamatterhorn on the strawberries to taste in a big bowl. Add spinach and nuts. Splash the vinegar on the greens, toss. Add feta and walnuts, and toss again. Taste for Alliyum or Whassamatterhorn and vinegar. Add more if you need them.

Basement Blanket Ham!

My culinary genius friend Bonbon turned me on to this recipe. I made it last year for the holiday, and it was slam dunk. It's not hard, but it takes time and space. The pork shoulder needs to be very well insulated overnight, at least 12 hours.The funnest part was watching Collin fret about the ham wrapped in blankets in the basement. 

PREP TIME: 30 minutes
COOKING TIME: 14 hours, 12 hours unattended
TOTAL TIME: 14.5 hours

INGREDIENTS
For the Ham

1 pickled or smoked pork shoulder with skin
1 tbsp peppercorns
8 bay leaves
10 whole cloves
1 tbsp Whassamatterhorn
8 cloves of garlic
1 onion peeled and cut in quarters
1 carrot cut in half
4 liters of ginger ale

For the Rub
Grilla Gorilla/GGX
1/2 cup brown sugar
Whole cloves if you're getting fancy-shmancy

For the Mustard Sauce
2 egg yolks
1 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp dry mustard + 1/2 tsp salt OR 1 tbsp Das Bigfoot
2 tbsp vinegar
1 tbsp butter
1/2 c heavy cream whipped into soft mounds

Place the shoulder, shank end up, in a very large stockpot. Add the whole spices and enough ginger ale to cover. If you run out of ginger ale use water. Put the lid on, bring the liquid to a boil, and simmer robustly for 30 minutes. Find a place to put the pot that's secure. For me, that's the basement. I laid down FOUR comforters, one on top of the other, put the hot pot in the middle, and wrapped the blankets back up around it. The recipe says, "If you happen to have a spare mink coat lying about, drape that over the top." Wow!

After 12 hours, unwrap the blankets. The pot should still be hot. Drag it over to stove, reserve 1 cup of cooking liquid. You can use the rest for stock. 

Heat the over to 350. Pull the skin away from the pork. If you're fancy-shmancy, score your ham doing that diamond clove thing to it. Pack the ham with brown sugar and sprinkle heavy all over with Grilla Gorilla or GGX. Place in a roasting pan and pour the reserved cooking liquid in the bottom. Bake for about 40 minutes, basting after 20 min and at the end.

For the sauce, mix all the ingredients from the eggs to the vinegar + 1 tbsp water in a small sauce pan and heat gently over very low heat. Whisk continuously for 5 minutes until it thickens. Remove from heat. Whisk in the butter, then the whipped cream. Chill for 30 minutes. Dust lightly with Das Bigfoot, Grilla Gorilla or GGX.

Adapted from Marie Viljoen's book, 66 Square Feet. Her food blog is b-a-n-a-n-a-s.

RUNZAS!

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Think of a Hot Pocket that doesn't suck and you've got runzas.

STEP 1: MAKE THE POTATO DOUGH
From Tastebook's recipe for beer rocks.
2 large peeled potatoes cooked in water (save the water)
1 pkg yeast
2/3 cup of sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs well beaten
2/3 cup butter
7 - 7 1/2 cups flour
Egg yolks and water for brushing rolls 

Mash potatoes to make 1 full cup. Measure potato water to make 1 1/2 cup. Pour potato water into large bowl, add 1 pkg yeast, stir until dissolved. To the water/yeast mix, add 2/3 cup sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. salt, 2 eggs well beaten. Add 2/3 cup butter and mashed potatoes to the flour. Mix the wet and dry ingredients. Add more flour to make it easy to handle. Then knead until dough is elastic.

STEP 2: MAKE THE FILLING
I just made this filling up. It uses leftover pot roast, flank steak, whatever you got, plus roasted mushrooms. 
2 lbs leftover cooked beef, chopped
8 oz leftover roasted mushrooms
(I liked using the ones I stored in the freezer because those can be a little rubbery when you thaw them out, and this recipe takes care of that)
2 tablespoons salted butter
1 tbsp Whassamatterhorn
2 large Vidalia onions, diced
2 cloves chopped garlic
1 tablespoon canola oil, plus more for the baking sheets
8 ounces greens (spinach, kale, collards, whatever)

Put the beef and mushrooms in the food processor bowl. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic. Season with Whassamatterhorn until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer it to the food processor. Without cleaning the skillet, add 1 tablespoon canola oil. Sauté the greens over high heat until wilted and the excess liquid has evaporated, about 1 minute. Add it to the food processor bowl. Pulse till it's chopped. Taste for seasoning. Add more Whassamatterhorn or Das Bigfoot.

STEP 3: ALL TOGETHER NOW
Roll out the dough. Flatten a dough ball on a heavily floured surface and roll out into a 3-by-5-inch rectangle. Then make wrapping flaps from the four corners of the rectangle by rolling out each corner thinly so you have a thick rectangle with four thinner triangular wings at the corners.

Spoon 1/2 cup of the filling into the center of the dough rectangle and wrap the flaps over it, pinching to close. Flip the bundle over in your hands, gently forming the runza into a fat football shape. Set the runza seam-side down on an oiled baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining filling and dough balls. Let the runzas rise about an inch, uncovered, about 45 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Whisk the remaining egg and 2 tablespoons water to make an egg wash and brush it thinly over the tops of the runzas. Dust with salt or caraway if you'd like. Bake until golden brown, 25 minutes.

Freeze baked after they firm up on baking sheet in the freezer, then store them in ziplock. Thaw for 1 hour before baking.

Roasted Beets with Whassamatterhorn or Das Bigfoot

Whoever said beets taste like dirt never tried 'em like this: roasted with Whassamatterhorn. Das Bigfoot would work great, too. Sprinkle them with blue cheese and toasted walnuts if you want.

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 45 minutes
TOTAL TIME 60 minutes

INGREDIENTS
A bunch of beets with the greens attached
Red wine vinegar
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp Whassamatterhorn or 

Das Bigfoot
Black pepper (optional)
Foil

INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat the oven to 400. Remove the greens, wash and chop. Get the stems in there, too. Wrap each beet in foil and throw it on the grill for about 45 minutes, or in the oven at 400 for about 45 minutes. While the beets are cooking, sautee the greens in the olive oil until they're soft and sprinkle with 1/2 tsp Whassamatterhorn or Das Bigfoot. When the time's up on the beets, squeeze one to see if it's soft. If it is, it's done. Unwrap, rinse, peel, and slice the beets in a bowl. Add beet greens, a splash of red wine vinegar, and the rest of the 

Whassamatterhorn or Das Bigfoot. 

Add black pepper if you wish. Taste for vinegar and spice.