Thursday, October 25, 2012

Culinary experiments

Culinary experiments for the day:

I had a very small buttercup squash and thought it'd be perfect to use the way that my friend Gracie suggested:  stuff it with a meatloaf and bake it.  And that's what I did.

I had bought a pkg of "ground turkey" which I can't imagine that it's ground at all....I'm certain that it's mechanically separated, which means it's pink slime...comes in a tube.  I cut it open, dump it into a bowl.  Into the bowl I added 2 eggs and some warm flat beer.  

I don't know why I added the beer.

I chopped up half an onion, 2 mushrooms, smashed some corn chips, dumped in some seasoned HyVee bread crumbs, seasoned with salt, pepper, and "Canadian chicken" spice blend.  

I also added a small red coloured pepper that Owen gave to me.  I cut off the top, scraped out the seeds, and chopped it up pretty small.  Since it was red I didn't worry too much about it, promptly forgot all about it.  

This Canadian chicken spice blend is the same as Montreal Chicken spice, just a different brand.  I got this at Sam's club because I'm a cheap bastard.

Somehow, before I went into the bathroom, I didn't get washed sufficiently, and found out how hot that pepper was going to be.  I didn't exactly have a burning sensation when I peed, it came later.  If you know what I mean.  

Of course, if I were truly cheap, I'd just use the salt and pepper and suffer with poorly seasoned food.

I washed the little squash, knocked off the stem, and sawed off the bottom of the thing.  Scoop out the seeds, spoon in the meatloaf mix.  To make sure that it didn't rot in the fridge, I dumped the rest into a loaf pan, baked the 2 side by side on a cookie sheet.  

The cookie sheet is actually the lid for a cake pan.

Sadly, since I don't make meatloaf often, I didn't put in quite enough salt.  Nor did I cook it long enough.  :(  Since the loaf pan was not much more than half full, I pulled it out after 40 minutes and turned the squash around just in case the oven has a hot/cold spot.  When it had cooled a bit, I sampled it.  Pretty good, needs more salt.  :(  OH well, easier to add salt than to take it away!

After an hour, I pulled it out, and let it cool a bit.  Put it into a bowl, and sat down to eat.  Couple bites in I see that it's not done.  3 minutes in the microwave took care of it and tested it with the thermometer to make sure.  

Next time?  I think I'd sprinkle a bit of salt in the squash to season it too.  I'd  sprinkle some bread crumbs over the top or corn flakes, something like that.  The loaf held together just fine; I was worried about it being too wet, actually.  I figgered it would not be greasy/oily since the turkey is so lean.


Once I got done eating, scraping out all the squash from the skin...I was still hungry.  Luckily I had some ripe bananas and some apples...since it was time to go back to work, those are bus friendly and quite portable.

Speaking of bananas....

I had 4 of them that were almost too ripe for eating, I ate 2 of them over the course of the afternoon and thought about what to do with the other 2 before they rotted.  

Hmmmmmmwhat to do, what to do?  A banana dessert makes sense, Fogo du Chao makes one that Val loves, so I tried to find a recipe.  No luck, but I found a recipe for something similar.

Peel the bananas, slice.  Throw a chunk of butter into the skillet, coat the slices with brown sugar.  When the skillet is hot, put some in.  Cook until they have some color, turn down heat and flip.  The other side will cook much faster...when all slices are cooked, pour in some bourbon or brandy or cognac or rum; flambe off the alcohol, boil to reduce the sauce.  Pour over the slices or ice cream, or add whipped cream or put onto cereal or oatmeal or pancakes or waffles or french toasty.

Reggie wanted to know if it was Bananas Foster.  No, no it's not.  But is quite close.  And it was delicious!  

Been a busy day in the kitchen...hey, do you want to hear about my scope experience, learn about my medical problems???

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