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fall in Spokane

Fall foliage calls for stuffed green peppers

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The autumn colors are beautiful. That’s why we got married in October. We celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary in Boston last year and it was a trip to remember, especially the lobster! Lobster cooked in so many ways I can’t recall them all.

That’s the upside of October here in Spokane; the amazing colors. Downside… I hate raking. Shuffling up to 15 bags of dead wet leaves and endless pine needles works up the appetite. Ultimately, it calls for the ‘big gun’ from my recipe box: 

Stuffed Green Peppers 

I take the biggest peppers I can buy and stuff them with our Angus Meats hand-made Italian Sweet Sausage (to die for!), browned with our Angus Meats 80/20 Ground Beef, Walla Walla Sweet Onions, of course mushrooms, and a mix of brown and white minute rice. Next, throw in some tomato bits, stir it all up, stuff the big green guys, and cover again with a garlic/onion tomato sauce. Bake at 350° covered for an hour. Add a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese as it cools. It’s a tasty reward after raking leaves all day 🙂 

This dish warms the tummy and the toes. Enjoy and happy fall! 

Written by Leslie Stachecki

A perfect pair

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You’ve got your meat on the grill and a frosty beer at your side. But did you consider if it’s the best beer to bring out the flavors of your protein?

Challenge: try some of these wine and beer pairings with the grilled food that you prepare and share your results via our Facebook page at the end of summer.

Burgers
  • Beer: Amber, Pale Ales or even IPAs work well with many hearty or spicy grilled meats, and burgers are no exception.
  • Wine: Zinfandel is appropriate, as the juiciness of the burger calls for a young, fruity red.
Seafood
  • Beer: American Pale Wheat Ales are often (and wrongfully!) overlooked for food paring. Hazy and full of flavor, but not overpowering, these beers are palate friendly and great in the heat, especially when paired with grilled fish.
  • Wine: An oaky California Chardonnay is a proper choice. Its acidity will handle the fat of the fish, and its creamy, buttery texture and flavor work well with grilled, smoky flavors.

Check out more of retailer, Giant Eagle’s, recommendations on how to best pair your proteins with your wine or beer.

grill

Grilltastic spring ideas

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Alrighty grill lovers. May is National BBQ Month! Now there’s a holiday I can really put my tongs around. Let’s celebrate this sucker with some Curry-style.

Here it goes.

First of all, this celebratory meal (or meals, right?) is going to be cooked entirely on the grill. I know what you’re thinking: “Hold on there Curry and don’t be in such a hurry!” Well, “Don’t-worry-Curry” has a plan. We are going to start with the main course. Beef, chicken, pork, even lamb all are in abundance during the spring. Question is, what sounds good to you and your family?

Next, we are going to cook all our complimentary vegetables on the grill. Yes, this can be done. You can use a special grilling pan made for vegetables that goes directly on the grills’ rack. If you don’t have one, cut your vegetables into portions, wrap them in foil, season them, and splash with a little olive oil. Place the packet on the grill and cook till al dente.

Can’t get enough corn-on-the-cob? Corn-on-the-cob cooked on the grill is one of the best preparation methods. The question is, are you supposed to shuck the corn? I cook my ears of corn leaving the husk on. Just soak them in a bucket of water for a few hours and then toss them on the grill. Shucking the corn is also an option, especially if your kids are looking for a chore (yeah, right!). Once shucked, place on the grill and fire away. Finish both methods of grilling by brushing on melted butter and sea salt.

How about grilled artichokes? Split smaller artichokes in half, toss in olive oil, season with your favorite blend, and grill until al dente. Other no-brainer options: Asparagus, tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, all delectable grilled veggies! Just olive oil, season, and grill away.

On to the starches. One of the best ways I have found to cook starch is cooking in foil pouches. Cut the potatoes (Yukons, Reds, Russets) into slices or small chunks. Season with olive oil or butter, sprinkle with cheese and season with fresh or dried herbs. For yams and sweet potatoes:  butter, brown sugar and cinnamon makes for a tasty treat.

Speaking of treats – pound cake grills great. No kidding. Spread both sides of a piece of cake with butter and sprinkle with brown sugar. Place on your grill and caramelize both sides. Serve with a scoop of ice cream and berry sauce, top with whip cream garnish with a mint sprig. Not a cake person? Take a peach or nectarine, split in half and grill away. You can also grill some pineapple and drizzle with a honey-cinnamon glaze. I guarantee your guests will be impressed!

Happy Grilling!

Written by Angus Brands’ Jeff Curry

Homemade steak seasoning recipe

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Once you have that perfect grilling cut picked out, kick it up a notch with this fantastic homemade steak seasoning.

Ingredients: 
■    ½ cup Paprika
■    ¼ cup Kosher Salt
■    ¼ cup Sugar
■    ¼ cup Cumin
■    ¼ cup Granulated Garlic
■    ¼ cup Chili Powder
■    2 tablespoons Mustard Powder
■    2 tablespoons Ground Black Pepper
■    2 tablespoons Cayenne Pepper

Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. With a funnel, pour into shaker containers. Makes 2 cups. Enjoy!

Curry’s Culinary Corner: Turkey Time!

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What time do I put the turkey in the oven? How long do I cook the turkey for? These are the two age-old questions that have been asked since the first Thanksgiving dinner.

So here you go: Plan on 20 minutes per pound in a 350 degree F oven for a defrosted turkey and 10 to 15 minutes per pound for fresh. If your turkey gets done before your guests arrive, pull it from the oven, place a large sheet of aluminum foil over the top, and then drape a large kitchen towel over the entire thing. This will help keep the heat in and the bird from drying out. If your bird seems a little dry, heat a few inches of turkey or chicken stock in a wide pan, slice the turkey, and drag the slices through the bath to get a little more moisture in there.

Another question we ponder this time of year is, “Should I brine my turkey?” Brining is a way of marinating and adding moisture to lean meat. The turkey or other meat is soaked in a mixture of salt and water for a few hours or days before cooking. Some recipes call for adding other flavoring ingredients to the brine, such as sugar, herbs, and spices, but they aren’t necessary. The simplest brining solution is to dissolve 1 cup salt per gallon cold water for 4- to 6-hour brine or 1/2 cup salt per gallon cold water for 12- to 14-hour brine (the shorter the soak, the saltier the brine needs to be to do the work).

From all of us at Angus Brands, we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and juicy turkey!

Written by Angus Brands’ Jeff Curry

Fire and Forget

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Here are three simple, slow-cooker recipes that you can start in the morning and forget about until dinnertime!

Beer Legs

Ingredients:

  • Package of chicken legs, seasoned with salt and pepper
  • Diced onion
  • Bottle (or can) of your favorite beer

Directions: Add all ingredients to your slow-cooker and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.

Teriyaki Thighs

Ingredients:

  • Package of bone-in chicken thighs
  • ¾ cup soy sauce
  • ¾ cup water
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • ¼ tsp. minced ginger

Directions:

  1. Add chicken thighs to slow cooker
  2. Whisk together remaining ingredients
  3. Pour mixture over chicken and slow cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.

Country Style Pork Ribs

Ingredients:

  • Package of bone-in or boneless pork ribs
  • BBQ rub
  • Bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce

Directions:  Season ribs with the BBQ rub and place in crockpot.  Add BBQ sauce and cook for 4 hours on HIGH or 8 hours on LOW.

Now wasn’t that easy?  The great thing about these recipes is you can change the protein (chicken, beef, pork), but keep the seasonings the same.  Tip: the pork ribs are great with an onion or golden mushroom soup mix as seasoning.

Enjoy all the extra time you’ve saved!!

Recipe: BLT Hot Diggidity Dog

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Soon we will be into the long dog days of summer!  Get a head start on the dog days with a BLT Hot Dog. “BLT” hot dogs are topped with crispy bacon, fresh tomatoes and crunchy lettuce dressed with a creamy caper-pickle mayonnaise. Fat-free! Just kidding. It’s summer – relax and enjoy!

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 2 teaspoons chopped capers
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dill pickle
  • 8 hot dogs, cooked
  • 8 hot dog buns, toasted
  • 8 slices of crisp, cooked applewood-smoked bacon
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 4 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
Directions
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the shallot, capers and pickle.
  2. Put the cooked hot dogs in the buns; top with bacon and tomatoes.
  3. Toss the lettuce in the caper pickle mayonnaise.
  4. Top the dogs with the slaw.
  5. Serve any remaining caper pickle mayonnaise on the side.
  6. Be sure to share 🙂

Recipe: Skillet Steaks with Sautéed Wild Mushrooms

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This recipe is for the Coulotte Steak but can easily be substituted with any of the steaks above that we have on special (and even the Pork Porterhouse!).

Total Recipe Time:  25 to 30 minutes | Makes 4 servings| Recipe courtesy of Beef Checkoff
Cook’s Tip: Three cups sliced button mushrooms can be substituted for assorted wild mushrooms.Ingredients
1 to 1-1/4 pounds beef Coulotte Steaks, cut 1 inch thick
2 teaspoons olive oil
3 cups assorted wild mushrooms (such as cremini, oyster, shiitake, enoki and morel)
2 cloves garlic, minced, divided
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
Kosher salt and pepper

Directions
  1. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Add mushrooms and 1 clove minced garlic; cook and stir 2 to 4 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and browned. Remove; keep warm.
  2. Combine thyme and remaining garlic; press evenly onto beef steaks. Place steaks in same skillet over medium heat; cook 8 to 11 minutes for medium rare to medium doneness, turning occasionally. Remove to platter.
  3. Carve steaks into slices. Season with salt and pepper, as desired. Top with mushrooms.

Tips for using the grill

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Tips for the grill
  • Before you get started, dust your grill grates with oil or cooking spray to keep food from sticking. Be sure to let the grates come to temperature before you begin cooking.
  • Bring ingredients to room temperature before you cook; they will then cook more evenly and quickly.
  • Remember the 4-by-4 rule to determine how hot your grill is: If you can keep your palm 4 inches over the coals for 4 seconds, it’s at medium heat.
  • For even browning of meat and poultry, pat the surface with a paper towel to remove moisture before grilling.
  • If your steaks curl on the grill, score the outer layer of fat at 1-inch intervals.
  • Refrain from pressing hamburger patties on the grill with a spatula or piercing meat with a fork; you’ll lose the juices. Use a spatula or tongs.
  • If you prefer skinless chicken, be sure to marinate the meat first; then baste frequently with leftover marinade during grilling.
  • Use fresh lemon juice in your marinades. It tenderizes meat, blends well with many flavors (from soy sauce and ginger to BBQ sauce), and accents other tastes.
  • Let meat rest at least 5 (if not 10) minutes before slicing them. The meat will absorb and redistribute the juices.

Caramelized onion recipe

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A great topper to any dish, here’s a great recipe for caramelized onions:

Caramelized Onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large yellow onions sliced
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2-3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Salt and black pepper to taste

Heat oil in fry pan, add sliced onions and cook very slowly over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes. Stir occasionally. When onions are softened and tinged golden brown, deglaze with balsamic vinegar, and add brown sugar- this will start the caramelization process. Continue to cook over low heat for another 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until sticky and caramelized. Add salt and pepper to taste.