Entries Tagged as 'beef'

This week, it’s Peter’s turn to be stalked by me. LOL Cheese Stuffed Keftedes

Yeah, so earlier in the week I had posted about staring at Peter’s (of Kalofagas) delicious Eggs Benedict recipe…Staring at Peter’s recipes is nothing new for me.  His site is a daily read.  He has a wonderful sense of humor, and is a phenomenal cook.  You should SEE some of the delicious things he cooks up!  He is of Greek descent, and, luckily for us, he shares his mouthwatering recipes, and the fun stories of Greece and his heritage that go along with them.  Not too long ago he had posted his recipe for Cheese Stuffed Keftedes (couldn’t you just *die* at how good those sound?)…well, I knew I had to put those on the menu.  I mean, Come ON!  Keftedes?  Stuffed with Cheese?  I may have fainted into my keyboard.  Actually, I’m pretty sure I did, because I had these weird square bruises on my forehead. ;) This week, I could wait no more.  Monday I bought the ingredients to make his hellaciously good recipe. 

cheese stuffed keftides

I’m not going to post Peter’s recipe, because I actually followed it pretty much to the letter…I had to substitute Gouda cheese (see it trying to escape there? lol) for the Greek cheese, though, since I can’t get the types he recommended for the recipe.

To go along with these delicious morsels of Greek joy, I decided to make a fresh tzatziki (pictured here) and hummus (pictured below).


Tzatziki Ingredients:

2 cups plain Greek yogurt, strained overnight
1 large cucumber, peeled and seeded, diced
1 smaller bunch of mint, minced (about 1/4 cup)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste


Mix all ingredients.
Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight.
Drain any excess liquid thay may have formed before serving.

The hummus was an excellent dip for both the keftedes and the pitas.  I tell you, this is perfect summer food, you guys. The next time you plan on grilling plain old burgers? Forget that idea, and make these instead! Seriously, they are amazing. :D


Hummus Ingredients: 

1 jar garbanzo beans (14 oz, 800 grams), mostly drained
2-3 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons tahini
juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste


Using a food processor, mince garlic first, then add garbanzos and process until semi-smooth.
Add tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and salt and continue to process until creamy.
*If mixture still seems a bit thick, add a tablespoon or two of water to help it along.

Las Recetas en Español:

Keftedes de Peter (traducido directamente de su página web), Ingredientes:

1 kilo carne molida
2 cebollas, ralladas
4 rebanadas de pan, humedecidas con agua y desmenuzadas
1 cucharadita de ajo en polvo, o ajo fresco majado
2 huevos
1 cucharadita orégano
1 cucharadita perejil picado
1 pizca de comino
sal y pimienta al gusto
queso en lonchas para rellenar (Vlahotyri o Kasseri) (yo utilizé Gouda)


Mezclar todos los ingredientes en un bol (mejor con las manos).
Formar hamburguesas finas, y reservar en un plato.
Tapar con film transparente y meter en la nevera durante al menos 4 horas.
Antes de asar, dejar que los keftedes vuelvan a temperatura ambiente. Cojer una loncha de queso y
ponerla en el centro de una hamburguesa. Ahora, tapar con otra hamburguesa y presionar por los lados a cerrarla bien.
Procurar cerrar los keftedes muy bien por los lados para evitar que se escape el queso cuando los ases.
Asar a fuego medio unos 5 minutos cada lado.
Servir con mostaza, mayonesa, Boukovo (chilis picantes molidos), ensalada y pan.

Tzatziki, Ingredientes:

2 vasos (de Nocilla) yogur Griego, escurrido durante una noche
1 pepino grande, pelado y con las semillas retiradas, en daditos
1 manojo pequeño de hierba huerto, picadito
2-3 dientes de ajo, majado
sal y pimienta al gusto


Mezclar todos los ingredientes.
Tapar y dejar en la nevera varias horas o una noche.
Si se haya suelto algo de líquido, escurrirla antes de servir.

Homus, Ingredientes:

1 bote de garbanzos (800 gramos), escurridos
2-3 dientes de ajo
2 cucharadas tahini (crema de sésamo)
zumo de 1 limón
2 cucharadas aceite de oliva virgen
sal al gusto


Poner todo en el robot de cocina y procesar hasta que esté cremoso.
Si te parece un poco espeso, añadir unas cucharadas de agua para ayudarlo.




Bacon and Gouda Burgers with Yummy Beer Battered Un-Blooming Onion Rings

It’s so weird how certain foods seem to appear all at once around the blogosphere…I have been craving onion rings for weeks, and finally decided to make them this week…well, while making the rounds I saw that Kevin at Closet Cooking had also made onion rings recently! LOL  Great minds think alike, that’s all I can say. ;)  Are you guys familiar with the Bloomin’ Onion appetizer at the Outback?  Yeah, right?  I love the seasonings they use, but that thing is such a Pain (capital P) to make at home…plus, it never turns out the way I imagine it…usually it breaks apart and winds up being some sort of onion mess rather than looking like the pretty flower it’s supposed to.  Onion rings are much easier to do, and if you have a deep fryer, well, then all the easier yet. So, I thought why not make a batter with similar flavors to that of the ”Bloomer,” (hehehehe I had to, folks.  I just had to) but in ring form?  Perfect.  Seriously.  They went fabulously well with my bacon and Gouda burger, a bit of alioli (I should post the recipe for that, it’s so easy) and the requisite ketchup and mustard. 

unblooming rings and a burger


For Burgers:
1 1/2 pounds (3/4 kilo) ground beef
dried onion to taste
garlic powder to taste
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg
1/2 pound (200 grams) bacon
6 slices Gouda cheese
6 buns

For Un-Blooming Onion Rings:
2 large yellow onions, sliced into rings
1 1/2 cups flour (about)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg
1/2 bottle of pilsner beer (drink the other half while you’re cooking! lol) or sparkling water
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
a bit of paprika
Sunflower oil for frying


For Burgers:
Combine all burger ingredients (except bacon, cheese and buns) and form 6 patties.
Brown bacon and drain on paper towels (leave the drippings in the pan).
Fry patties over medium high heat until cooked to desired doneness.
Serve with Gouda slices and crispy bacon.

For Un-Blooming Onion Rings:
Whisk together all ingredients except onion slices in a medium sized bowl.
Heat oil to just below smoking point.
Gently toss onions in beer batter.
Carefully! Add onions to hot oil, and turn over as they brown (the timing will depend on the size of your rings).
Drain on paper towels.

Kibbeh a la Canarygirl

There is this Lebanese restaurant that we go to called El Monte Lí­bano…my gosh they make the best kebbehs (they call them “kipes”) I have ever tasted!  I have made kibbeh at home for years, and it’s really pretty easy.  You can make them bite sized, as I’ve done here, or in more of a meat pie form.  I tend to like the individual ones better, though, because the leftovers freeze and reheat really well.  Usually when I make kibbeh, it’s part of a whole menu of appetizer type bites…including falafel, hummus, lebne mixto, kebabs, tabbouleh or shirazi, and whatnot else…Who doesn’t like to taste a bit of everything when they’re eating?  And these things are all bite sized, so you can taste all of the dishes without stuffing yourself to maximum capacity (you know, unless you *want* to lmfao).  I don’t claim to make kibbeh in it’s most authentic state…no….I don’t.  But I will tell you this.  It’s darned good.  So, whatcha waiting for?  Get your aprons on and prepare to get your hands dirty. :D


First, you’ll want to get all of your ingredients for the “shells” ready:

kibbeh ingredients


1 1/2 pounds (3/4 kilo) ground beef or lamb
1 cup small bulgur, plus enough water to cover
1/2 of a large onion, finely minced
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
salt and pepper to taste


First, add just enough water to cover bulgur in a small bowl. Allow to rest while you add the rest of the ingredients to the meat.
Then add soaked bulgur to the bowl and mix all ingredients very well.


Use your hands and sort of knead the meat mixture until everything is very well combined (about 5 minutes).


Cover and reserve while you make the filling.



1/2 pound (200 grams) ground beef or lamb
1/2 onion, minced
2-3 cloves garlic minced
a splash of olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon garam masala
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground ginger
salt and pepper to taste
a small bunch of mint, minced
a small bunch of cilantro, minced
1 packet pine nuts (about 1/4 cup)


In a medium sized saute pan, saute onion and garlic in a splash of oil.
Add meat and brown.
Drain off excess grease.
Add seasonings and lemon juice and toss around for a few minutes.
Remove from heat and add herbs and pine nuts.
Cool until easily handled.


Now, preheat the oven to 425ºF/200ºC, (I bake rather than fry, but if you prefer, heat a substantial amount of oil in a deep fry pan instead) and line a baking sheet with parchment.
Take about 2 tablespoons of the “shell” mixture and form a small bowl in the palm of your hand, then fill with cooled filling. Like this:


With your free hand, grab another tablespoon or two of the shell mixture and, pressing on the side of the bowl, form a sort of cover for the kibbeh.  Pinch edges together to seal, and press with your hands to smooth the surface.


Place on baking sheet and repeat with remaining ingredients.


Bake in preheated oven for about 20 minutes, or until browned. (alternatively, deep fry until browned, about 10 minutes)

One Pan Beef Stroganoff

I suppose it’s no coincidence that my blog has been filled with comfort type dishes as of late…the January blues and blahs tend to hit really hard for some reason…even living here in the Canaries where it’s sunny more often than not.  I’ve always thought that my seasonal surge of depression was due to the cold grey days of Minnesota winter, but once again I am proven wrong…even though the days can be bright, here, my mood has not been.  Whenever this shadow shows it’s ugly self, I find that I dive into comfort food mode, and probably a comfy robe and slippers, too.  So, it’s no surprise that today’s post is about one of the quintessential winter comfort dishes…Beef Stroganoff. Being the busy (and too lazy to do dishes) mom that I am, I try to cut time corners whenever possible.  Beef Stroganoff traditionally makes a big mess and lots of dishes, but not this one.  I promise you every bit of the delicious flavor of Stroganoff with only one deep pan.  Well, and the pasta pot, too.  It’s quick, easy and hella soothing on a rough day.  (so much so that I hid the leftovers from the kids so I could have them myself!  Bad mommy! lol)

beef stroganoff


2 tablespoons butter
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large onion, minced
3 cups chopped mushrooms
1 1/2 pounds steak of choice, cut into thin strips (or ground beef)
2-3 tablespoons flour (or cornstarch for gluten free)
3 cups beef consomme (or beef broth)
a splash of Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup tomato puree
1 bay leaf
a few sprigs of thyme (or thyme leaves to taste)
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup sour cream (or Quark cheese or Greek yogurt)
chopped parsley to garnish
1 pound (400 grams) egg noodle pasta, prepared according to package directions


Using a deep saute pan, melt butter.
Saute garlic first, just until golden, then add onions and stir until translucent.
Add mushrooms and season with salt and pepper.
Cover and cook, stirring occasionally until mushrooms are tender and beginning to brown just a little.
Add steak (or ground beef) and toss around, browning a bit.
Add flour and give it a good stir.
Now add consomme, Worcestershire, tomato puree, bay and thyme and season with salt and pepper.
Stir to combine, then cover and cook over low heat about 20-30 minutes.
(Now is a good time to make your pasta)
Add sour cream and stir through.
Remove from heat and serve over pasta, garnished with freshly chopped parsley.

Something like Salisbury Steak

What?  Not another soup recipe, you ask?  Nope, not this time.  lol  I am stepping ever so cautiously out of my soup comfort zone and venturing out into the world of main dishes this time. ;)   I’m well aware that Salisbury Steak is one of those things that may bring back memories of the freezer section of your grocery, but this particular recipe bears absolutely no resemblance to those little frozen meat like pucks.  And I swear, the mashed potatoes are real! lol  Homemade Salisbury Steak is pure comfort food, tender patties bathed in delicious gravy, with a side of the ultimate mashed potatoes (mine really are the best, I swear) and sweet corn.

salisbury steak 


6 large potatoes, peeled and quartered
3-4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sour cream, Quark cheese, or Greek yogurt
3/4 cup milk
salt to taste

1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 package Knorr onion soup mix
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 cup milk
1 egg
garlic powder to taste
salt and pepper to taste
2-3 tablespoons oil
a splash of Worchestershire sauce
a splash of Kitchen Bouquet
3 cups water
2-3 tablespoons flour
thyme to taste


First, cover potatoes generously with water in a larger pot.
Season with salt and bring to a boil.
Cover and reduce heat to medium.
(you’ll want to start the Salisbury Steaks now)
Boil potatoes about 25 minutes or until cooked through.
Add butter, sour cream and milk.
Season with a bit of salt.
Mash potatoes with a potato masher.

In a large bowl, combine meat, 1/2 of the packet of soup, bread crumbs, milk, egg, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
Form 6 ovular patties.
Heat oil over medium heat and place patties in pan.
Cook about 6-8 minutes per side, until browned.
Add water, remaining soup mix, Worchestershire and Kitchen Bouquet and season with garlic powder, salt, pepper and thyme.
Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce heat to medium low.
Allow to cook about 15-20 minutes.
Remove patties to a plate.
Make a flour slurry with the flour and a bit of water.
Whisk into sauce.
Serve “steaks” and mashed potatoes with gravy and vegetable of choice.

Sirloin with Peppercorn Cream Sauce

Summer always signifies the beginning of steak and salad season for me…such a simple meal, yet so satisfying.  My hubs is the grill guy…that is one area that I just cannot seem to get right…sure I do all the prep, but he’s the one that’s got the temperature/time ratio down to a science. :)   This is a recipe that is fairly common around the restaurants/grills in canaryland…the sauce really dresses up a plain steak…I like to also add some sliced mushrooms to this, but my veggie vendor didn’t have the best looking shrooms today, so I left them out…if you do decide to use them, add them after the onions, and sautee until tender. :)



4 sirloin steaks (nice thick ones)
2-3 tablespoons butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, minced
1/2 cup cognac (or 12 year old scotch)
1 cup beef stock (if using purchased stock, be sure to check the label to make sure it’s gluten free)
2 tablespoons green peppercorns (I use the jarred ones)
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon bovril (this is gluten free beef reduction. It’s a paste)
lots of freshly cracked black pepper
cornstarch slurry to thicken (2 teaspoons cornstarch + 1/4 cup water)


Melt butter over moderate heat.
Add garlic and sautee just until golden.
Toss in onions and give them a good stir until translucent.
Deglaze pan with cognac.
Add peppercorns, beef stock, cream and bovril, and stir to combine.
Bring up to just below the boiling point and add cornstarch slurry to thicken–stirring constantly.
Cover and reserve.
Season steaks with cracked black pepper, and grill as desired.
Season with sea salt.
Allow to rest on wooden cutting board 5 minutes.
Plate steak and spoon sauce over.


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