Search This Blog

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Semester Ending!

Three days left. Or 3 hrs, 45 min. Either way you look at it, time is getting close on this semesters classes and I could not be happier. Today I finished one class, it was a 2nd 8 week class that was held only on three weekends. It went from 8:30 AM- 4:00 PM Sat & Sun. However we only stayed till 4:00 once, and today we were out by noon. The class was relatively useless, it was called career and life studies, and was supposed to help us figure out how to be successful, or something. I really got nothing form the class, but it fulfilled a random requirement, which is fine with me.

This week I have two more classes of my Urban Studies course, which I enjoy greatly but makes me want to punch a few of my fellow classmates square in the head. I have the final for that class on Monday the 3rd. Then I have 2 blissful months of no school, but unfortunately will need to work a ton during those weeks, and in July 2 more classes, one history, and one Philosophy and at this point it looks like three classes this fall, unless my situation changes with in state/ out of state tuition crap.

Going back to school has been fun, I think I can be done in 2 years, maybe less, time will only tell. I did spend this week getting my ass handed to me, I had a paper due on Monday, one on Wednesday, and the final section of my portfolio this weekend, I have let all things non school related fall behind, such as keeping up with my friends lives, a blooming relationship left dead and all working out stopped as well.

However I hope to reverse all that this week, I have just a few more classes and have a few weeks before I begin my next round of classes, and until then I just need to find a job that is a little more exciting and pays more. Good luck to me!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Easy Steak Salad

Today for lunch I made a wonderfully easy steak salad I thought would be nice to share for everyone.

I wanted to keep it simple and since I am really picky about my salads this was relatively easy. I used Romaine Lettuce, Sliced Red Onion, Freshly picked Cilantro, Feta cheese, a Parmesan Ranch dressing and a delicious steak. My dad grilled the steak last night, it was a filet, wrapped in bacon and he cooked it to medium rare which worked fine for the salad, I did warm the steak (cheated and micro waved). The dressing was very simple, Parmesan/Reggiano cheese, Chives, Cilantro and ranch dressing, mixed together and tasted fantastic.

In addition to the simple salad I wanted to include some add on’s that while I find them not as appealing would work wonderfully for the salad, Grape tomatoes, radishes, mushrooms (sliced cremini would be best), and some red cabbage. I would also suggest adding some nuts, I would have used toasted pine nuts, but candied pecans would probably be amazing. I also understand my proclivity for Feta cheese is not always appreciated so any number of cheeses could be easily substituted based on your own tastes such as Bleu Cheese or Goat Cheese. Even some fine cheddar such as Vermont would be a tasty addition.


Monday, April 12, 2010

Fresh herbs and Pasta! Tres Bonne!

Fresh herbs. What a wonderful and delicious thing! My little tiny green friends are coming along fairly well with only a few hiccups along the way. My Basil took a shock at the beginning of the week, it got very cold overnight, and I did not even think about the poor buggers, and the next morning I was looking at 6 little shriveled green guys, so I did the only thing I could think of. Nothing. I thought, hey they are in shock and likely anything I do will probably make it worse, so I gave them a few days, no watering or anything and they came back a little worse for the wear, but I think they will be ok. All the other guys are doing very nicely, the cilantro was cranky at first but is now coming along even better than I could have imagined, and while the others are not exactly taking off, I think in another week or so I am going to have to start pinching them back.

So after a rather droll class today I thought to myself I should make something with some of these tasty treats and came up with this delicious pasta .

I used a tri-color rotini pasta ( tomato, spinach and egg) and leftover pulled rotisserie chicken ( slightly smoky, but no skin and white meat only!) A lemon herbed veloute sauce, and Feta cheese.

To better explain the sauce I did a twisted Veloute/Bercy. For those of you who are unfamiliar with these sauces, volute is one of the “five mother sauces” used in French cooking. They are the base sauces that all other sauces are built upon. They are Bechamel (milk and roux), Espagnole sauce (roughly a very dark roux with veal stock and meat and bone) AKA Brown sauce, Hollandaise (egg yolk, butter and lemon juice) this is the amazing sauce served on eggs benedict, Tomato sauce (need I say more), and Veloute (light roux with one of many kinds of stock added to it). Bercy is simply Veloute with the addition of Shallots and white wine (basically)
SOOOO… I made my roux (equal parts butter and flour cooked till straw colored, then added chicken stock and lemon juice (2T butter/Flour; 1cup of broth, and +2T of lemon juice) let it simmer for 20 minutes then added my basil (the poor damaged leaves) minced garlic, and Oregano and gave it another 5-10 minutes or so to release the flavors. Then I tossed the pasta in the sauce and chicken and added Feta (lots) to the top with some more julienne basil and oregano.

The result was fabulous! And I was so hungry I forgot to take a picture, but I think you all get the picture. Now you will have to take note, when I am cooking I often do much by feel, smell, and taste so my times are not exact and often my measures are not as exact, however, one does not mess wit the proportions of roux, or veloute. Not without some terrifying results anyway, so consider yourself warned.

So I got to make a pasta dish I have been toying with and use my fresh herbs, as well as pinch back some of my tiny friends, all a great night for yummy foods! As Julia says “Bonne Appetite!”