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eG Foodblog: pastameshugana (2011) - Looking for an Oasis in a Culinar


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... memories of open-fire lard-cooked Navajo fry bread wrapped around cheese stuffed fresh roasted chiles in northern Arizona...

Where in Northern AZ? That's my 'native place' as they say in B'Lore.

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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... memories of open-fire lard-cooked Navajo fry bread wrapped around cheese stuffed fresh roasted chiles in northern Arizona...

Where in Northern AZ? That's my 'native place' as they say in B'Lore.

Up in Houck, on the Navajo reservation just over the border from Gallup....in a former life working with an old pastor and his wife. The daily excitement was driving ten minutes to Ft. Courage to get our mail...going to Window Rock once per month was like Disney World! Boy was I pissed the first time they took me to the petrified forest and we didn't drive through actual groves of stone trees....

Just remembered- in addition to the awesome semi-relleno's we'd use as a vehicle to eat more fry bread, one of my favorite things was strips of lamb fat wrapped in some lamb intestine so that it would hold together while it char-roasted over the fire. Sounds kind of out-there, but wow the crispy fatty goodness....

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

Unsaved Loved Ones

My eG Food Blog- 2011

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Challa just about to go into the oven...

a6cd097e-e637-20ff.jpg

From iPhone using Tapatalk

I think I can be there in, oh, maybe 12 or 16 hours?

I love challah. Haven't ginned up the courage to try it, plus there's a great bakery in town that does it, which means I have it when I want it for French toast. Best French toast in the world, bar none: Challah, eggs, heavy cream. Fried in butter. Arteries be-damned.

Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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I love challah. Haven't ginned up the courage to try it, plus there's a great bakery in town that does it, which means I have it when I want it for French toast. Best French toast in the world, bar none: Challah, eggs, heavy cream. Fried in butter. Arteries be-damned.

Yes! The leftovers get made into eggs on toast and French toast (Mrs. Meshugana). Absolutely the best french toast ever.

You should give it a whirl, it's really quite easy. In fact, this is the only bread I've ever made. The only hard part is the braiding, but there's so many designs (like the pull apart loaf you see there) that are much easier. I also highly recommend this book, very easy to follow for a 'non-recipe' guy like myself.

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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I always wanted to make my own challa but since the jewish deli near me makes the best ever I've never had to. we've been using it for french toast since I was introduced to it in the 70's and I can tell u nothing else comes even close. when the kids have friends over it's either that or big fat belgian waffles with fruits. When we make the french toast I'll make up a bunch that will fit in the toaster for quick breakfastes and their great

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Does the book have braiding instructions? I use my own recipe but struggle with anything over a 3-strand braid. Beautiful challah - can't wait to see them baked.

Yes there's very good illustrate braiding instructions. More pics in a few hours! We also added ribeye kabobs to the menu...

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Edited by pastameshugana (log)

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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Well, here's a few pics from the rest of the prep for tonights dinner.

Challa out of the oven:

DSC02192.JPG

DSC02193.JPG

The bread really isn't as brown as the pictures make it look. It was cooked nearly perfect, but the color correction is wacking these photos out. This is, however, actually one of the more disappointing challas I've made. I used all-purpose instead of bread flour, and it wasn't perfect. Still darn good and there's barely a shred left, but not perfect.

Kebabs onto the skewers (Bacon wrapped through pieces of ribeye, onion, and anaheim pepper:

DSC02194.JPG

I feel like crying because I didn't get a picture of the finished product. It was worthy for sure. The meal was just eaten in a frenzy, so all picture taking was out the window.

Finally, the main course, Mrs. Meshugana's Leek Soup:

DSC02197.JPG

Just leeks, garlic, yukon gold, carrot, celery, sauteed in butter, simmered in chicken stock for an hour, then blended. Added about a cup of heavy cream to finish. Yowser. That, my friends, is a soup worth eating. So incredibly simple, healthy and tasty to your toes.

Back in the morning with more adventures!

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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That soup looks great! Care to share proportions? Have you ever eaten it cold, or is it better warm?

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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That soup looks great! Care to share proportions? Have you ever eaten it cold, or is it better warm?

Hmm - I've never thought about eating it cold - but I'm also not big on cold soups. I bet it would work, though.

For this batch we used: 3 large leeks, 6 medium potatoes, 7 (anemic) carrots, 4 green zucchini, 2 yellow squash, 6 stalks celery, 6 cloves garlic, and 1/2 can of diced green chilies (a last minute addition), 12 cups of chicken stock for the simmering.

When just about to serve, one 1/2 pint carton of heavy cream was stirred in. Last night we had some 'vegetable haters' in the house, and they all had seconds and thirds!

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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Thanks! I might make that for dinner tomorrow night. And I have french bread for croutons, it's like it was meant to be! :laugh:

If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

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Thanks! I might make that for dinner tomorrow night. And I have french bread for croutons, it's like it was meant to be! :laugh:

Some things in life are too tasty to be coincidence!

BTW - I love your signature line!

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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Countdown to disco time.

I've got my raw ingredients ready:

DSC02199.JPG

What you see is the meat: Chopped bacon, pork filet, and chorizo. A separate bowl for chili and garlic, and one for onions (red and green). I had to chop the chiles (anaheim, red jalapeno, serrano) large b/c we've got some non-chili-heads coming over that may want to pick them out. (I did however, surreptitiously crush into tiny bits a small handful of dried chile pequin that they'll never find! If they don't like it, more leftovers for me! Bhuwhahahahaa!)

The basic method:

Melt some lard in the disco (I may try a little coke as well, who knows), add bacon till lots of fat releases, move it out of the way (to the side of the disco). Add the chorizo to the bacon-y lard (I'll add the chili and garlic at this point), when about 1/2 done move it to the side. Add the pork to the middle and cook a while, then add some spices, the onions, and bring it all together and toss to finish. I'm adding the onions late so they'll stay crunchy and sweet-ish for some texture.

I forgo the traditional 'wieners' or sausage in this dish because I really don't care for them.

One more beauty shot:

DSC02200.JPG

I'll update later on this one!

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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I have not eaten all day and this is killing me - I refuse to eat anything unworthy - so will get into the kitchen myself and then salivate over your results. If you guys scarf it all up without photos there may be an uprising :wink: I am imagining the Southwestern or Mexican version of super hot wok stir fry

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I love challah. Haven't ginned up the courage to try it, plus there's a great bakery in town that does it, which means I have it when I want it for French toast. Best French toast in the world, bar none: Challah, eggs, heavy cream. Fried in butter. Arteries be-damned.

Yes! The leftovers get made into eggs on toast and French toast (Mrs. Meshugana). Absolutely the best french toast ever.

You should give it a whirl, it's really quite easy. In fact, this is the only bread I've ever made. The only hard part is the braiding, but there's so many designs (like the pull apart loaf you see there) that are much easier. I also highly recommend this book, very easy to follow for a 'non-recipe' guy like myself.

Beautiful challah. But if that is the only bread you've ever made from your favorite book--it is a favorite of mine as well--you should try some others. the book IS wonderful.

I picked up some El Pato yesterday at the new El Super in Tucson. Made a quick salsa with one little can for a quick snack with chips.

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I picked up some El Pato yesterday at the new El Super in Tucson. Made a quick salsa with one little can for a quick snack with chips.

Mmm. Me and the kids (the two youngest) actually dip potato chips in plain El Pato, which is a very tasty treat.

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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Well, we polished off the majority of the discada, and here's the (lengthy) tale:

Lard melted and 1lb bacon in (Bar-S, my childhood sweetheart):

DSC02201.JPG

After a few minutes, 1 can of Coke added to make a simmering sauce (most recipes call for beer):

DSC02202.JPG

Somehow I missed photographing the step where I pushed the bacon to the edge and added the chorizo to the liquid.

After that, push the chorizo out and add the pork tenderloin, plus the 'hard' stuff (chile & garlic):

DSC02203.JPG

DSC02206.JPG

Closeup beauty shot:

DSC02208.JPG

Long shot showing corn going onto the grill in the background (and Mrs Meshugana's ankle - woo hoo!):

DSC02205.JPG

Closeup of the corn:

DSC02204.JPG

Last step - adding the onions and tossing:

DSC02211.JPG

Yum! (bad pic, sorry, but I was preoccupied with stuffing my face at the moment:

DSC02212.JPG

The black is from (I believe) the coke carmelizing (burning?) onto the disco and being scraped off while tossing. It actually was an extremely tasty, salty sweet and porky crunchy substance that I intentionally scooped from the bottom of the serving bowl onto my tortilla. (Doesn't 'Salty Sweet and Porky Crunchy' sound like the name of a punk band's debut album?)

We used flour tortillas in the past, this time we had flour and corn. I must say, this meal calls for corn tortillas. Lightly fried in oil - that's the bomb.

Stuff a tortilla with the filling, cheese, crema mexicana (a cultured sour cream (not in the "pinky in the air while sipping tea" meaning of cultured, the "this milk has gone slightly off" meaning of cultured)), and a dash of El Pato.

Oi vey. I'm going to have to roll down the hall tonight.

Sweet dreams!

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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Today has started out crazy - so Mrs M did breakfast - French toast strips all around. ;)

We've eaten so much pork this week, maybe something light tonight. Looking at steamed veggie pasta, and we've got some pears & almonds we'd love to make a salad out of. Any ideas?

PastaMeshugana

"The roar of the greasepaint, the smell of the crowd."

"What's hunger got to do with anything?" - My Father

My eG Food Blog (2011)

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Jamie oliver has a nice recipe where you cut raw beetroot and pear into matchsticks and add fresh mint and feta with sunflower seeds. I usually use pear with spinach/endive, blue cheese and walnuts but almonds would work too...

"Experience is something you gain just after you needed it" ....A Wise man

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