Snacks for a special evening

March 4, 2016

Good but not earthshattering.

Good but not earthshattering.

Because tonight is a special evening. Season 4 of House of Cards is out, and I am diligently refraining from watching it now, so Child A and I can watch it tonight.

When I apprised her of this plan last night, she asked whether I had the evening’s junk food menu planned out. Honestly, I have to admit I had not considered same. But now I am.

So. I think we shall have some ahi tuna poke — raw ahi tuna, marinated in sesame oil, soy sauce and other good stuff, tossed with cubed fresh pineapple, served over sliced cucumbers. Buttered radishes with sea salt. Potato skins. We have cheese dip. We have good slicing cheese. We have charcuterie, and we have pickles. Might devil a few eggs.

Yep, sounds like an evening menu fit for binge-watching, to me.

Meanwhile, the above photo was not of snack food, but rather of dinner last night. And while it was good, it was not exceptional, and after several attempts, I can’t say I see what all the shouting about short ribs is about.

Yeah, I know. Short ribs, I guess. I get them every year with my beef order, and I’ve tried several different recipes. Don’t get me wrong, they’re not bad. They just don’t send me off into transports of ecstasy. I’d just as soon have a good chuck roast.

Anyway. These short ribs, I had slathered down in gochujang, a Korean hot pepper paste that’s approximately the equivalent heat rating of molten lava. My hands burned for an hour because I didn’t think to wear gloves when I smeared the stuff all over the short ribs. I sealed them in vacuum bags, and put them on in the sous vide at 135 degrees for 72 hours.

This is at the point where, according to Chef Steps, short ribs leave the territory of the terrestrial and become something ethereal, with a velvety tenderness that rivals the best steak, but with the flavor imparted  by bone and fat.

I’m sorry. I don’t see it. I mean, they’re good. But they’re not any better than a well-braised chuck roast.

Once they came out, I refrigerated bag and all for three or four days, until I got ready to cook them. I put them on a rack in a foil-lined roasting pan and coated them down with a Korean (see a theme here?) galbi, or barbecue, sauce. Into a hot oven for maybe 20 minutes to get a nice crust.

As I said; they’re good, but not exceptional.

With it, we had some rice and some stir-fried broccoli. I love stir-frying green veggies in a simple sauce of ginger, lemongrass, sesame oil, soy sauce and mirin. It lends itself to any green veggie — asparagus, green beans, sugar snaps, broccoli, brussels sprouts, you name it.

So that was dinner. I am much more looking forward to tonight’s munchy dinner. Oops, must put some bacon in the oven so I can have crumbled bacon on the potato skins.

I’ll see you ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em after the House of Cards marathon.




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