Honestly, what is it with you? I post a picture of seasonally-appropriate pumpkin pie, positively groaning under the heavenly decadence of a cumulus cloud of whipped cream, anointed with a lascivious dribble of maple syrup, and even go so far as to post said picture along with an ACTUAL RECIPE for the best crust in the world. And submit the picture to the most shamelessly dessert-whoring websites in tubedom. And what do I get?
Nothing, is what. I give up.
Now I realize that just about all of my commenters have babies, which I take as a personal insult. Between Blanche over at Pumpernipple, Amy at We Are No Fun Any More, Muffin Twat at The Girl With A Pearl Necklace, and the tag-team vortex of slack that is the Dual Airbags, the average number of comments here has plummeted in the past few months. I feel like Tracy Morgan: “If you read this blog, you’re gonna get PREGNANT!” (I just took off my shirt). Also, dudes evidently find my sensitive-yet-masculine aura off-putting. But that’s not really news. Let’s not even get in to what’s up with Claudia. Interestingly, though, traffic is brisk. So for you good lurkers, here are some pictures of non-dessert food that I made all by myself just for you. Let’s begin with that steak, right? You know you were going to ask me about it.
I got some wonderful grass-fed, biodynamic rib eyes from the nice people at Threshold Farm, and they’ve been snug in the freezer since then. I like rib eyes; a nice thick bone-in steak has plenty of character and also offers opportunities for advanced frugality. First, one steak per couple. That’s the easiest way to keep cost and calories where they should be. Second, take it apart before cooking. There’s the main central steak, which can be marinated or rubbed and cooked to a lovely crust as steaks should be, and there’s the spinalis dorsi, possibly the very best muscle on a cow when it comes to eating. My favorite thing to do with them is roll them up and skewer them, making little roulades to serve as a first course or alongside the sliced steak for contrast. Last, there’s the bone, which can make an excellent quick stock on a night where stock is required, or it can add beefy depth to some chicken or vegetable stock or a stew of some sort. Treated properly, a $13 steak can make two meals for two people.
In this case, after disassembly, I rubbed the steak with salt, pepper, Espelette pepper, and herbs and let it sit. I reconstituted some leftover whole wheat couscous with a bit of random chicken stock, adding shallots and peas, and I cooked two diced slices of bacon until crisp, poured off the fat, and then added a mess of kimchi to warm through. I seared the steak in the bacon fat, turning often to get a nice crust, then removed it to a plate to rest before slicing. The iron skillet full of steaky, bacony goodness was too much to resist, so I added in a mixture of mustard, gochujang, and wine and whisked it all together into a thick brown sauce that I suspected would be pretty good with steak and kimchi.
And the bone, dutifully saved (I ate the spinalis dorsi, quickly seared, as a cook’s treat because it wasn’t very big) went in a pot with the following to make a wonderful soup the following day: 1 quart of smoked chicken stock, some leftover radish cooking water, and a bag of the mirepoix I bagged and froze in September. I took the bone out after a while, then added quinoa, Israeli couscous, cubed potato, chiffonaded kale and Asian cabbage, and herbs. I poured in a bit of soy sauce and vinegar to balance it, and whisked in two well-beaten eggs to thicken it just before serving. The garlic chives are from the yard; they’re early spring and late fall’s little garnishy gift to us.
There was no pie.