I am a big fan of hamburgers. There is nothing better than a burger straight off the grill with a toasted bun topped with lettuce, tomato, and some good mayo. Know matter how you like yours dressed up, first you have to get the burger right. I think after years of trying I have found the best burger ever thanks to Ina Garten’s cookbook Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics. When I made these a couple of months ago I thought maybe it was just a fluke that they were out of this world. I made them again this weekend and they were fabulous. They are very simple. Give them a try and let me know if you get the same results. Ina’s recipe calls for Niman Ranch ground meat which you can buy in some grocery stores in this area or you can order it on-line. It is beef grown all naturally without antibiotics and primarily grass-fed. My beef came from Tommy Waldrop here in Douglasville. Anyway, start with some good ground beef and the rest is just a breeze!
Salmon cooked on a Cedar Plank
Fish is quick to prepare and very healthy. Some cooks are afraid to prepare this convenience food. Why ?? It really is simple to make.
Growing up we had fish every Thursday night. I mean every Thursday night! My parents loved fish and seafood. I grew up in south Georgia in the middle of the state. It is two to three hours from the ocean. Fish came into the local fish market every Thursday. My mother would go after she picked us up from school and pick out the fish we were having. They would wrap it in newspaper. Most of the time we would have fried trout with her homemade tartar sauce, homemade hushpuppies and for the life of me could not tell you what else.
Today I do not fry fish, I usually grill , blacken in an iron skillet, or bake. It is just a lot more healthy and the clean up is so much easier.
One of my favorite ways to prepare salmon is on a cedar plank. It really is easy and makes for a very elegant meal.
You can pick up cedar planks in many places. I have found them at supermarkets as well as the local green egg dealer. Just follow the directions that come with them. This particular one I soaked in water for an hour. I just put it in the sink and covered with water putting a saucepan on top to keep it under the water.
In the meantime I marinated the salmon. Usually I make one, but I was short on time and just purchased a prepared one recommended by the gentleman in the seafood section of the grocery. The salmon marinated for about 45 minutes.
I then prepare the grill. I take that back GI Joe is in charge of the grill. Using the Big Green Egg it was preheated to 325 degrees, placing the cedar plank on the grate and let it heat for about 8 minutes. Place the salmon skin side down on plank and cook until it flakes with a fork. This cooked for about 20 minutes. Cooking on the cedar plank will lengthen the cooking time because you are using indirect heat. The fish can be placed directly on the grate of the grill. Cooking time will be cut in half. Make sure that the grates are cleaned and well oiled.
Serve it with your favorite sides. I chose brown rice with asparagus. It was a great dinner!!
The Teacher Cooks
Marinated Flank Steak
Julie from Cliff Drysdale Tennis was our house guest last week. She said she needed just a little help with cooking up some dinners when entertaining. I served this grilled marinated flank steak dinner and she thought it was quite good. So Julie this blog is for you . Hope that it will help.
Flank steak was once a cheap cut of meat until someone discovered that all you had to do was marinate it. Now the steak is not cheap , but it is still economical. You just have to know how to prepare it.
The marinade I use is from a friend that taught me a lot about cooking. Cile moved to Wilkinson County when her husband became the new dentist there. They were both from Baton Rouge, La. Man she could cook!! Being from a small country town I knew nothing about a roux or any other Cajun cooking recipe. Everything she made was fantastic. I take no credit for this. Try this with flank steak, rib eyes, chicken or I have even marinated pork chops and you will get rave reviews from your guests.
Take a gallon ziplock bag and put in a medium bowl. Fold down the top around the bowl. Now you can mix the ingredients in the bag and save on clean up. Combine the following ingredients in the bag and mix well. Marinate the meat 8 hours or overnight. Take out for at least 30 minutes before grilling to reach room temperature. Follow grilling directions for your particular type of grill. For the Big Green Egg you should cook for 6 minutes on each side at 350 degrees. This steak is good only cooked at medium rare to rare. Do not cook well done. Trust me that is great right off the grill or try it cold on a salad. The steak in the photo made 7 servings. Let it rest for 10 minutes before cutting. This will keep all the juices inside the steak and make it nice and moist.
- 1/3 c. of lemon juice
- 2 T dry mustard
- 1/4 t salt
- 1 T pepper (tablespoon is correct)
- 1/2 c. wine vinegar
- 1/4 c. Lea & Perrin Sauce
- 1 1/2 c. oil
- 1/2 c. Soy sauce
- 2 cloves garlic peeled and cut in half
Combine all ingredients and shake. Use for marinade for steak, flank, rib eye. Marinate for at least 8 hours.
Marinated and ready to grill
Here is the Athlete ready to grill! ( He looks nerdy)
Headlights are needed when you grill in the dark.
Cutting against the grain
So here it is for you Julie. Now you can entertain your guests. Enjoy!
The Teacher Cooks