Sunday, July 18, 2010

Today's Special: Fish Tacos, Beer Can Chicken, Tijuana Tortas, Dry-Aged Steaks, & Banana Pudding

Fish Tacos- New Recipe. I saw Alton Brown make these on Good Eats the other day and thought they looked really good. I made kind of a cheater version though. I didn't make my own tortillas and I didn't make my own sauce. I did however make the fish/marinade like he did. For my cheater version I used soft flour tortillas and some store bought spicy ranch dressing for the sauce. My ranch dressing wasn't that spicy though so I added a couple chipotle chilies in adobo sauce (I had some leftover in the fridge... doesn't everybody?) and blended it up, which he does in the recipe. It takes 24 hours to make the sauce his way and I just don't plan ahead that much. Anyway, I really liked these and thought they turned out really good. I'll have to try making that sauce one of these days to see if it's worth it.

Beer Can Chicken- New Recipe. I love making whole chickens. Mainly because I think they look funny when I'm prepping them for cooking. I feel like I'm giving a little chicken child a bath and a rubdown! HA! I also like to make whole chickens because they are just so darn cheap. I got a 4 lb. chicken for $2.38. Awesome huh? Anyway, as far as this recipe goes, I really liked the flavors (have I mentioned how much I love fresh thyme?) and it was very simple to prepare. The chicken turned out incredibly moist. The skin wasn't quite as browned as I would have liked so in the future I'd start it out at a higher temp to brown it and then back it down to keep the meat moist. This was a great basic recipe that has potential for a lot of tweaking/customizing. Also, the recipe says you can use a small mason jar filled with chicken stock instead of the beer.

Tijuana Tortas- New Recipe. Good not great. Probably won't make them again, but not bad for a vegetarian meal. (I have never actually had a regular torta so I have no idea how these compare, sorry Rachel.)

Dry-Aged Ribeye Steaks- New Recipe. Another Alton Brown recipe (he used Porterhouse steaks though). Although I thought these turned out well, I don't know that it was good enough to warrant days worth of prepping. It was fun to try but I doubt I'll do it again.

Southern Banana Pudding- New Recipe. This tasted a lot like banana cream pie but without the extra step of making a crust. If you make this, don't get impatient like I did and eat it an hour after you make it. It uses layers of Nilla Wafers which need time to soften in the pudding. I didn't want to wait to try it out and the cookies were really dry. This was much better the next day, so make sure you plan ahead. It won't be worth it otherwise. Also, I used an 8x8" (2 quart) pan and only had enough pudding and such for 2 layers, not 3 as it states in the recipe. The recipe says to use a 1.5 quart pan so maybe I would have had enough for 3 if my pan had been a bit smaller. Not that it really matters as far as taste is concerned. Anyway, I thought this was a good, easy dessert.


Rachel said...

If you people would just listen to me and go to the GOOD mexican restaurants instead of that nasty fishy Pachangas, you would know what a real torta tastes like. Geez.

Also, I'm a little frightened by your chicken/child metaphor. You do know you're not supposed to roast babies, right?

Paul said...

Re: beer can chicken. What a waste of good beer!

There is an Argentinian place here that makes the most amazing empenadas. Except you have to buy like four to get full. Unbelievably greasy and awesome. They also have those churros that have some kind of filling (pudding or something). I cannot tell you how good they are. Mmmmm ... churros ...

That was a total non sequitur. I only thought of Argentianian food because of Rachel.

Karen said...

Whatever Paul, you need to read the instructions... HALF a can of beer! HA! Of course technically you could drink it all and fill it back up with chicken broth. Win/Win!

I've never actually had an empanada, sadly. And I LOVE churros. The ones you described sound even more awesome than the regular ones.

Holly said...

The Banana Pudding looks so delicious! I really, really want some RIGHT NOW! :)

Brenda ND said...

Oh, wow. You're making me hungry. Thanks though for the recipes. I'm always looking for something new to make.