thegingerchef

Recipes from My Kitchen

Been gone, too long…

Sooo sorry that I haven’t been around!  The last few weeks have been busy ones, and really, I haven’t felt much like posting.  But I’m back!  I have about 5 posts in the queue and I will try to get them finished up this week so I at least have things to post, even when I don’t feel like it.

Today, however, I felt like making cupcakes!!  Really, I have since Christmas – my cousin’s girlfriend made cake balls using strawberry cake mix and they were heavenly.  So when I got back home I went straight to the store and got strawberry cake mix.  And there it sat in my pantry for 2+ months.  *sigh – I need to be better about baking!!!

Anyway, today sounded like a great day for cupcakes (I know my husband’s office-mates love when I bake, they usually are the benefactors).  But since it’s really just a mix from a box, with a little icing, I thought “what can I do to make these a little more special?”  Idea!!  I had some leftover melting chocolate from Christmas and decided I would make chocolate strawberries to top the cupcakes with.  As it turns out, I can’t draw a strawberry with icing to save my life 🙂  but the general idea comes through and they look pretty good.  And they’re very tasty!!

The easiest way to do this is lay out a sheet of wax paper.  Melt a few of the chocolates in a ziploc bag (30-40 second intervals so you don’t burn the chocolate).  Then pipe it onto the wax paper and stick it in the fridge to harden.  Then, eat the rest of the melted chocolate out of the ziploc bag, because, well, it’s spectacular.   When you assemble the cupcake, stick a knife in the middle to make a space for the chocolate to go – otherwise you will break the chocolates (good thing I made extra!!!)

 

 

Then, for dinner, I made an open-faced steak sammich.  We originally had this in an Irish place a while ago, and I’ve made it twice since.  It’s really messy, but delicious!! (And super easy – do I ever make anything not easy?? 🙂 )

I bought a big chunk of flank steak and only used half of it.  Salt and pepper on each side, then broiled on High ~5-6 minutes on each side (turning twice).  Then I cut off a few slices of bread and lightly broiled them.

I sautéed a few slices of white onion in a little butter, then made a gravy.  Now the gravy is the only complicated part of this – and I had to make it twice, since I screwed it up the first time :-p  Mix a little dark beer (you only need a cup or so) with some flour, then cook on low until it thickens (should happen pretty quick – if it gets too thick, add a little water or more beer to thin).  It will have a slightly dull taste to it, so you will probably need to add some salt and pepper to it to taste.

To assemble the sandwich – Lay the bread on a plate, top with a few pieces of Romaine lettuce.  Slice the steak very thin, then layer on the lettuce.  Add on the onion pieces, drizzle on some gravy, and top with blue cheese.  Delicious!!

 

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Leftover Extravaganza

Since we had so much turkey leftover, here are my first two post-turkey meals.  I must say, the sammiches for lunch were almost better than the Turkey Dinner!!

Sandwiches –

Bread I made the stuffing with.  Asiago Cheese.  Turkey (of course).  Stuffing.  Gravy.  Bacon.

Dinner – Turkey Pot Pie

I used all of the leftover veggies I had (Leeks, Carrots, Celery, Mushrooms), added Turkey, baked in puff pastry.  And then promptly forgot to take a picture before we dug into it.  🙂

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