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Book of the Month


July 2018
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Buttermilk w/ Fresh Fennel Ranch Dressing

Why get that goopy ranch dressing from the store when in minutes you can make this beautiful and tangy dressing good on salads and as a veggie dip.

This is a great base, change up the fennel frons to chives, fresh thyme, or other fresh herb.

Make it “lite” by using low fat yoghurt but keep the sour cream full flavored.

Makes around 2 cups

1 cup yogurt 1/2 cup buttermilk 6 tablespoons sour cream 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar 20-30 cranks freshly cracked black peppercorns about ½ tsp Several pinches of kosher salt (to taste) ½ tsp (or

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Chicken Fennel Soup v. 2.0

The last Friday of October, cold, gray and rainy with a wind like a knife, it was my day off.  So what’s a boy to do?  Soup!  I wanted to have something to warm the insides for a late lunch/early dinner which was timed for the lady who had to work all day.  I knew she would be hungry.  So I pulled out one of my classics with some tweaks, as I am known to do.

My chicken Fennels soup is based off of a soup I first had at a favorite little lunch spot in downtown Minneapolis called

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Squeeze Me IPA

Deschutes inspired beer in a Deschutes pint glass, hey what the hell is the Rogue sample glass doing there?

This beer was inspired by the beauty of Deschutes Fresh Squeeze. It is not a clone but it comes very close to it, we think it is a fusion of Fresh Squeeze and Indeeds Mosaic, the dankness of the Mosaic hop and the punchy Citra hop creates a beautiful beer that is still our favorite beer we brewed.


Method:               All grain

Style:                    American IPA

Boil Time:            60 Min

Batch size:           5.25 gal

Boil size:               6 gal

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Killer Harissa Hot Wings:

Hot wing, you know you love them, crispy skin with sticky and spicy goodness, what’s not to love?  I get cravings for them every so often and usually get them out at a bar or grill somewhere around town, everywhere has a slightly different way of doing them, but that might be better addressed in another post.  I most often get the traditional “Buffalo style” wing and I make a mean one at home (check um out) but I also like to experiment with them.

Killer harissa hot wings is one of our creations, a very lovely alternative to

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Smoky Red Sauerkraut w/ Dark Beer

Sauerkraut is a lovely side dish or topping that is often just pulled out of the can or bag, heated up and plopped down as a here you have it side. This is fine and dandy but it is a bit boring so I encourage you to try this smoky kraut dish that goes great with grilled, smoked or seared meats, especially pork, duck and other rich meats.

Even if you think you don’t like sauerkraut, you must try this, it will blow your mind what kraut can be!

This one has a subtle sourness with a nice smoky

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Slow Cooked Beef Short Ribs in Red Coconut Curry

As the last little bit of a Minnesota winter was dying off (post was written a while ago just not posted), ever so slowly I mind you and with great drama to boot, I had been thinking of slow cooked beef short ribs. I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do, this sort of conundrum has not stopped me before. I chatting this topic up with my “cooking partner in crime” ™ we looked around the kitchen to see what was available and came up with this nice curry. This will work all year long and will be

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Small Batch Base Sauerkraut and Jazzed-Up Shallot and Juniper Berry Sauerkraut

I remember my dad making large batches of kraut when I was a kid.  It always seemed like a huge under taking to me but when Fat Jack Zvanovic, George Patricka and a hand full of other Czech guys came over with cases of cabbage and cases of Schmitt and Pfeipher beers (really bad beer at that) it was always an event!  They also made a Czech sausage called “Jitrnice” also but this is another story.

My dad had several old school cabbage cutters that dated to at least his grandparents, couple guys would be shredding the cabbage, one

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Roasted Asparagus with Shallots and Garlic

Simple but awesome side dish for a variety of stuff.When I do asparagus it is usually whatever is at hand, but if I have prepared ahead of time this is my go to.

Hand full of asparagus Glug of olive oil Pinch or two of kosher salt and a few grinds of black pepper or to taste 1 small shallot sliced (thinly into ringlets) 1 or 2 cloves of garlic diced Pinch or 2 of red pepper flakes (optional) A pat or two of butter (pasture butter is best)*

Pre-heat oven to 350° F.

Remove the woody bottom part

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Steelhead Trout in an Orange Thai Pepper Sauce

The act of cooking for me has gotten to be very similar to the act of painting (as in art), it is cerebral, introspective, exhilarating, tiresome, challenging, playful and fun (amongst others) all at the same time. As a bonus there is a tasty ending game!  The act of cooking good food is more about the living in present then art is, maybe not for the artist but for the “viewer/taster”, it is about the here and now, the immediateness, the intimacy as it were.  Time is a foe for the base ingredients and the final product has a

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Roasted Apples

I was making a pork roast today and thought I would do some roasted apples with them.  I didn’t get fancy with them but that is what makes them so good!

Very easy to multiply this for more yummy!  just double or triple it!

2 good baking apples (I used Harrison apples) 1 Tbls. brown sugar 1 tsp. cinnamon ¼ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg Several pats of butter

Preheat oven to 350°

Mix brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a small bowl.  Slice apples into 8ths and remove core section.  Toss apples in sugary goodness and place in a

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