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AustinBike

What ya cookin'? Share your thoughts on food at home!

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Posted (edited)

Yeah, there are a handful of things that I can cook well, but this one was not on the list - homemade pierogis. If you had a polish or Eastern European grandma, you had these sometime growing up. I was craving them so I found a recipe and made some this morning. Let's just say that this was a 2-3 hour labor. When I looked it my Fitbit I burned as many calories as riding.

Basically these are potato, cheese, onion, garlic and bacon pierogis and when I was done I had ~72 of them. Had to eat a few after cooking just to make sure they were up to par. The cool thing is you can cook them, then either do the final pay fry step or just freeze them and cook them later. This is pretty similar to gyoza, might try that next.

The final ones pictured here had some overly cooked onion on them, that is what at the black specs are. If you are interested I am going to write up the recipe and post it later.

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Edited by AustinBike
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We bought an inexpensive, crank-driven pasta maker a little while ago. it does make better fresh pasta than dry store-bought stuff, but it's more fun to make. it's a team effort so the wife and I take our time to do it right.

I can share it if I can find it, but we've perfected our brownie recipe. sorry, no THC involved.

I make my own seitan sausages. it's fun to play with the levels of herbs and spices.

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Posted (edited)

Posted a bit about it on the "On the bright side" thread, but I've been making my own beef jerky. I've made 4 batches so far experimenting with different flavors. At least half of every batch has been "original" flavor. Marinate overnight in soy sauce, worcestershire, garlic and onion powder, salt, pepper, and brown sugar. I've also done a cajun spice, honey sriracha, and chile lime. The favorites so far have been the original and cajun.

The process is pretty easy, but time consuming. I have an electric smoker that works perfectly. After marinating, I hang the beef strips from toothpicks on the racks, put them in the smoker for 1.5 hours @ 170 with no smoke, then add some wood chips (I've only used apple so far) and crank up the temp to 185 to get the smoke going. After those have burnt up, lower the temp to 160 for several more hours until desired level of dryness. 

Every batch has come out phenomenal. Way better than store bought. Actually, it's about time to start planning my next batch. 

 

Edited by notyal
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Posted (edited)

I've actually made my best bread loaf ever.  I have baked bread for a long time, usually a whole wheat recipe from Better Homes & Gardens baking book (as far as yeast breads) which never really came out great.  When the yeast became scarce at the store, I looked into sourdough.  

My first attempt at the starter was terrible (a no discard method, which I think is unsustainable), even though I knew the starter was not great, I tried to make the bread and basically I made a rock.  I read up and consulted with a friend that has a brick oven in his backyard.  That first recipe was terrible.  I took the starter I had (still had viable yeast but was making more alcohol than anything else) and started doing discard and it fixed right up.  I have a super fast rising starter (I had to get a bigger container b/c it was overflowing in 12 hours) and my first extra tangy (with no acidifying additives) sourdough came out awesome.  My second attempt at yeast bread was a whole wheat with 100% of the flour being whole wheat (the BH&G recipe is 50% white flour), and I made the most perfect loaf of bread I've ever made.  I'm starting to understand yeast and I'm getting a better feel for the consistency of the dough.

With the discard, I've made crackers (they taste like Cheez-its!), biscuits, and english muffins.   It's been a lot of fun so far and it's rewarding when the loaf looks like could be in a postcard.

Edited by AntonioGG
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41 minutes ago, AntonioGG said:

With the discard, I've made crackers (they taste like Cheez-its!), biscuits, and english muffins.   It's been a lot of fun so far and it's rewarding when the loaf looks like could be in a postcard.

My wife has a low-carb cracker that she will make from time to time, they're great. A good cracker is usually underrated, but it is an excellent delivery system for joy.

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16 minutes ago, AustinBike said:

My wife has a low-carb cracker that she will make from time to time, they're great. A good cracker is usually underrated, but it is an excellent delivery system for joy.

Similarly, tortilla chips are a delivery system for salsa/guacamole, and waffles are a delivery system for maple syrup (the real stuff).

 

BTW, best low carb "cracker" are those parmesan crisps.  They're like crack!

 

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Waffles are also an excellent delivery system for fried chicken. Also with real maple syrup. 

 

Waffles can also be spectacular on their own. @Jessica has a Belgian waffle maker, and quite a few different batter options. When she does the quick batter, it makes excellent waffels. But that overnight batter is amazing without even adding a topping of any sort. But you still want to put real maple syrup on it, of course. We're no heathens. I mean we are, but not like that. 

 

12 minutes ago, AntonioGG said:

BTW, best low carb "cracker" are those parmesan crisps.  They're like crack!

I also enjoy the parmesan crisps. But something odd happens when you have them with whisky. They become more like parmesan chewing gum.  

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What's considered a Belgian waffle maker? Are those the ones with the very shallow pockets like for Stroopwafels?  I have one that's round with the big pockets.  Nothing like the old square traditional one.  My favorite batter is simple in ingredients but I beat the egg whites separately, mix the dry stuff, the wet stuff (other than the whites), then fold in the whites very carefully.

I've tried the chicken and waffles.  It's not my thing.  But I have made a ham and cheese sandwich out of waffles.

One thing I've always wanted to try to make is crepes.

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Crepes are super easy.  In fact, I'd say they were easier than pancakes!  When you get the griddle heat just right, they are picture perfect.  I like mine sweet with jelly or syrup but I have a sweet tooth.

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18 hours ago, AustinBike said:

Yeah, there are a handful of things that I can cook well, but this one was not on the list - homemade pierogis. If you had a polish or Eastern European grandma, you had these sometime growing up. I was craving them so I found a recipe and made some this morning. Let's just say that this was a 2-3 hour labor. When I looked it my Fitbit I burned as many calories as riding.

Basically these are potato, cheese, onion, garlic and bacon pierogis and when I was done I had ~72 of them. Had to eat a few after cooking just to make sure they were up to par. The cool thing is you can cook them, then either do the final pay fry step or just freeze them and cook them later. This is pretty similar to gyoza, might try that next.

The final ones pictured here had some overly cooked onion on them, that is what at the black specs are. If you are interested I am going to write up the recipe and post it later.

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The wife and I do pierogis from time to time. They are a labor of love, but so delicious!

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7 hours ago, AntonioGG said:

How similar are pierogis to empanadas?

Pierogis are typically potato and cheese filling. I think Empanadas are usually meat. Something else my wife and I make are Jamaican patties those are very similar to Empanadas but damn they're good!

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50 minutes ago, Chief said:

Pierogis are typically potato and cheese filling. I think Empanadas are usually meat. Something else my wife and I make are Jamaican patties those are very similar to Empanadas but damn they're good!

In Mexico we have sweet empanadas. In northern Mexico some are yeast dough and baked with pumpkin, pecan and other fillings.  Elsewhere it's the more traditional pastry dough with sweet or savory fillings.  We also have the fried kind made with wheat flour, but we also have these awesome corn masa fried quesadillas.  The two traditionals I've had are huitlacoche (mushroom that grows on corn) and squash blossoms with cheese.  Man, I've been on a bland diet for days and have a few more days left.  I'm torturing myself.

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Pockets of food goodness have different names throughout the world, but seem to be comfort food universally.  

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Empanadas are close to pierogis which are close to gyoza which are close to dim sum dumplings. 
 

basically the world loves any kind of dough-based delivery system.

 

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On 5/14/2020 at 12:03 PM, AustinBike said:

polish or Eastern European grandma

I'm guessing perhaps you've also had Hungarian goulash. Used to get it every time we passed through Toledo, OH. Damn I miss that stuff! 

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12 hours ago, throet said:

I'm guessing perhaps you've also had Hungarian goulash. Used to get it every time we passed through Toledo, OH. Damn I miss that stuff! 

Yes, ate a lot of goulash in Poland, Czechia, Germany, and even once in Croatia. If you see it on a menu it is the easy call. 

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19 hours ago, throet said:

I'm guessing perhaps you've also had Hungarian goulash. Used to get it every time we passed through Toledo, OH. Damn I miss that stuff! 

There used to be a Hungarian German restaurant in Pflugerville that did Goulash, Sauerbraten, schnitzel and other very good European foods. It was called The European Bistro two sisters from Hungary owned and ran it. The sister that did all the cooking was in her eighties. I guess they were getting too old to keep it going. 

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On 5/15/2020 at 8:25 AM, AntonioGG said:

How similar are pierogis to empanadas?

Empanadas are a derivative of Cornish pasties, from when the English miners came to Mexico.

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23 hours ago, Chief said:

There used to be a Hungarian German restaurant in Pflugerville that did Goulash, Sauerbraten, schnitzel and other very good European foods. It was called The European Bistro two sisters from Hungary owned and ran it. The sister that did all the cooking was in her eighties. I guess they were getting too old to keep it going. 

Man, there was also a great mother-daughter German joint in Pf called the Nuernberg Brauhaus - it was a sad day when they shut down.

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I've mostly just been cooking simple meals, from Hellofresh. Get the 2-serving/4 meal package, so I'll have something to take to work. Rest of the time I just make do with miscellaneous items (beer brats and tortillas, or sandwich of some sort) or order something delivered/takeout. 

Just found a big packet of instant yeast, so will start making loaves of bread, once I have the rest of the ingredients. And now that I've moved into an actual house, with more space, will be making pizzas from scratch.  Also need to start a new batch of beer, since I've not made anything since November.

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6 hours ago, AustinBike said:

I want a full report on that! Love gochujang, especially on pork and octopus.

It was delicious. I thought the pork was going pretty spicy from the gochujang marinade, but the shallot paste (or maybe just cooking for a long time) really mellowed it out. I've made more tender pork shoulders. I'd go a little lower and slower than the recipe calls for next time, but the flavors were incredible. 

We also made all the accompaniments, which was a lot of work. Luckily for me, my wife made most of those elements, and I just cooked the meat. The gochujang sauce was spicy and garlicky and gingery. The coconut milk jasmine rice was essential. It was creamy and a little sweet which really balanced out the richness of the meat and spiciness of the sauce. Then there was a sweet chili cucumber, a sesame oil rice vinegar slaw, and pickled carrots and radishes. They were all good, but kind of accomplished the same thing - an acidic but fresh crunch. Just to reduce the workload, you could easily combine or eliminate one of those things.

We will make it again, and probably soon. I might have to find some octopus because I am now a big fan of gochujang (and have a big tub). 

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Also the lettuce was completely useless as a wrap. Just put it bowl.

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