I have to admit that I have been putting off writing up this weekend’s meal. It’s not that it wasn’t good or that I didn’t enjoy making it… it was actually quite good and I certainly enjoyed making it. It’s just that this is the last real act of integration into my routine back in korea. I have been in denial about the whole thing and would honestly rather still be in Colorado with friends and family but the sad truth is, here I am, in korea, typing up a four day late blog entry. Almost early for next week 🙂
Anyway, pity party over, time to get back on track. First and foremost, this meal was highlighted by a singularly distinctive beverage. While on holiday, I had occasion to try Odell’s Bourbon Barrel Stout and it was so damned good that I had to carry one back to share with Eddie. This is the most amazing beer I have ever tried and I have had hundreds of different beers over the years. Aging in the bourbon barrels imparts the stout with a deeply resonant flavor and the head has the light taste of bourbon. A fine sipping beer, it has raised the bar too high for any other beer I am likely to have for the duration of my stay in korea. But damn, it was worth it.
Oh yeah, there was food as well… I wanted to make something that would stand up to the wonderful beer so it to be a beef dish. I poked around a bit and found a recipe for a garlic encrusted roast beef and that definitely fit the bill. Alongside this, I had planned a potato dish. While in Colorado, I also picked up a current issue of the magazine “Draft” and amongst the wonderful pages of beer information, there was an article on cooking with beer, specifically potato side dishes. A recipe from Chef Tyler Anderson of the Cooper Beech Inn was exactly what I was looking for, Smoked Potato and Beer Gratin. For a vegetable, I took Eddie up on the challenge of converting his opinion on Brussels Sprouts. Really, I believe that people who don’t like them have just never really had them fresh and well cooked. Frozen and boiled to death, anything is going to taste like crap. Forget your childhood and eat more vegetables people!
So, the roast beef… I started with a nice 2 pound roast, well, as nice as I could get here. Let the meat come up to room temperature for about 30 minutes. Salt and pepper the roast and brown all sides in a hot pan to seal in the goodness. Meanwhile, mix 1 cup of bread crumbs, 6 minced cloves of garlic, 2 minced shallots, 1 tbsp thyme and 1 tbsp marjoram. Combine well and add in 3 tbsp of melted butter, stirring well to make a nice topping. Coat the top and sides of the roast with Dijon mustard and plaster on the crust mixture. Roast at 375 for about 45 minutes until internal temperature reaches 125… I unfortunately forgot my probe thermometer back at home while on vacation so I had to eyeball it. Luckily, the timing worked out right and the roast came out great.
While the roast is, well, roasting, mix up a horseradish mustard mixture with 2 tbsp horseradish, 2 tbsp Dijon, 2 tbsp sour cream salt, pepper and rosemary to taste. Serve alongside the sliced roast.
For the potatoes, as stated above, I used a recipe out of Draft magazine which I will link here: http://draftmag.com/recipes/detail/38 check it out along with the entirety of the magazine, which impressed me greatly and has earned me as a repeat reader for sure. As expected, I made a few modifications based on my limitations here in korea and personal tastes. I don’t have a bbq available so instead of smoking the potatoes over woodchips as required in the recipe, I reached a happy medium substitute with some liquid some and oven roasting. Not exactly as prescribed but hey, I’m doing what I can with what I got. I also increased the amount of Tabasco based on my own taste for things a bit on the spicier side. Use your own discretion on that one.
The Brussels sprouts, simple, easy… as I did for my going away feast a lifetime ago, I tossed them in olive oil and liberally salted and peppered. Hot skillet on the stovetop, roast them until they are slightly charred on the outside, stirring often to ensure all sides are cooked well. The aim is an almost crispy exterior with a soft delicious inside. I always slice them in half to serve but I’m just a little retentive. Bonus points for a little grated Parm on top of them on the plate, this time I did without.
The meal was great, I know I say that about all of them but really, I probably wouldn’t be wasting my time doing this if I was making crappy food. I expect excellent food when I step into the kitchen and I spend the time preparing and executing the dish with an aim at perfection. I am my worst critic but honestly, so far I have done pretty well and not jacked any of the dishes up. Hooray for me.
You may have noticed (or not) that this posting is about 8 days late. Well, I have been in serious denial about my return to korea and not terribly happy about it. Sorry about that. This is the last sign that I have returned to routine, at least for another 102 days. So, excuse the double post, enjoy reading about the food and I promise that I will get next weeks meal posted in a timely manner.