Skip to main content

Joyous cooking

If you still haven't discover the joys of cooking, then you ought to get yourself this magnificent book titled the same: Joy Of Cooking. This book is absolutely amazing. Even though I haven't the time to read it from cover to cover, just skimming through a few pages is choking my brains with so much infomation! That's why the book is 1,152 pages thick!

As a start to my first test of the recipes from the book, I chose Italian Pot Roast (Stracotto). This is my first time buying a nicely tied roast beef (raw), which save much of the time in preparation. Hubby did the stuffing of herbs into the roast and browning it (which was the oiliest part of the deal). After cooking was done (which ended around 1+am), my house smells like some Italian restaurants. The pot roast was delicious and it was my life saver! As after cooking it, my baby had to be admitted to hospital and confined there for 3 days. The roast kept hubby an me going for those few exhuasting days when we couldn't even leave of the ward.

Conclustion: Very aromatic due to amount of herbs. Actually, I find almost to the brink of being over-powering, but still ok. The browning of the roast turn out wonderfully textured outer layer for the roast. Perhaps I don't know my wines as well as I would like, my sauce turned out a tinge too tangy, but was otherwise very appetitising. Will definitely make it again, but with less herbs, of course.

PS: Sorry, didn't take picture of the finished product as I wasn't really in the mood to take any.

Italian Pot Roast (Stracotto)

Mince together:
3 large cloves garlic
1/4 cup tightly packed fresh parsley leaves
4 fresh sage leaves, or 1 tsp dried
1 tbsp fresh rosemary, or 1 tsp dried

Set aside half the mixture and mix the rest with:
1 bsp olive oil
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Make about 10 slits in:
1 beef rump roast (3 1/2 to 4 lbs)

Stuff the slits with the oil and herb mixture. Heat in a heavy pot over medium-high heat:
3 tbsp olive oil

Add the roast and brown on all sides until dark and crusty, about 20 min. Maintain the heat so that the meat sizzle but does not burn. Remove the roast from the pot and pour off all but 2 tbsp of fat. Sprinkle the roast with:
1 tsp salt

Return the pot to the heat and add:
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery, chopped
4 oz mushrooms, sliced
1 bay leave, broken

Cook, stirring until the onion is lightly browned. Stir in the remaining herb mixture and cook for 30 sec. Add and boil until almost dry:
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 tbsp tomato paste

Stir in and boil until reduced to less than 1/2 cup:
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup beef stock

Add the roast along with:
One 28 oz can whole tomatoes
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup beef stock

Bring to a gentle simmer and cover the pot. Reduce the heat to its lowest setting. Cook the roast slowly, so that the liquid just barely simmers, for about 2 1/2 hrs. Turn the roast every 30 min or so. When the meat is tender, remove it to a platter and cover it with aluminum foil to keep warm. Skim off any fat from the surface of the liquid. Season to taste.


Popular posts from this blog

Main Course Salads: How To Make Ahead

I am still very into salad these days and probably will start to turn various shades of green soon at this rate we are chomping them down.

After making and eating quite a number of salads, I've came away with some notes on how to get a head start in making salads.

Size - Cut it down
I just came across an article from The Kitchn asking if there is a way to eat salad gracefully. I didn't think that there was much hope in that direction until I had the Wafu Salad from Tonkichi that made me realise that it is possible to eat salads gracefully - cut everything into bite-size.

Prep ahead
Although salads needs minimal cooking, it involves lots of knife-work. Slicing, dicing, chopping all take time. But as I've mentioned earlier, most ingredients of a salad can be prepared in advance, but not all. Cut avocados will turn black, apples brown, and so forth. So if you are considering these items for your salad, either wait until just before serving to dice them up or leave them out. Th…

Main Course Salads: Salade Nicoise

My motivation for looking into main course salad was born out of sheer laziness. I was looking for a one-dish meal (less plates) that requires minimal cooking (less pots/pans) and packs lots of veggies as well as being filling. No skimpy wimpy diet salads for this gal.

So if I have to put this into a checklist of evaluating a salad, it would probably look like this.

Salade Nicoise has all the ticks in the check-boxes. Everything in this salad can be made ahead of time. Right down to the proteins of eggs and fish (either canned tuna or leftover grilled salmon). Now, isn't this dish time friendly?

The dressing for Salade Nicoise is just a simple olive oil and acid mix (ratio is 1 : 1.5)with shallots and herbs thrown in together with Dijon mustard. The recipe for the vinaigrette I used came from The New Best Recipe which you will be able to find it on Simply Recipe. I haven't had many main course salads in restaurants, but from the very few that I had eaten, the dressings were …

Main Course Salads: Grilled Ribeye Steak Salad

I made this salad the other day.

The good news is that we love having steak and salad in one plate. It packs more fibre and colours than the usual steak and potatoes combo.

The bad news is that there is no recipe to share cos I just toss together the odds and ends I found in my fridge.

But ... I will not leave you out cold without a recipe. Actually, I had my inspiration of making a grilled steak salad from The Pioneer Woman's Big Steak Salad. Head over and drool at her photos.

I grilled 2 slabs of ribeye steaks seasoned with Cajun Seasoning and I could have eaten them hot off the grill while standing in the kitchen. The anticipation that built up while dicing them up for the salad was almost unbearable. I did snitch a bite though.

The salad was dressed with my usual dipping sauce for Vietnamese Rice-Paper Roll. This is my favourite sauce for something salty and spicy. However, do note the high salt content in the fish sauce. Dressings are usual the black sheep of an otherwise healthy …