where’s my STEAK?

I have my fair share of weird meat issues, but sometimes I just need a big hunk of red meat. And it consumes me until I can eat a big hunk of red meat.

I made a nice luxurious lil steak dinner for my roommate and I tonight after the Longhorns lost another football game. Everyone seemed to be upset about the refs so I will say FUCK THE REFS! I CALL BULLSHIT ON THOSE REFS!!! REFFFFFFS! With every football game I learn a little more about football but still fail to understand why anyone cares so much about it. Anyway. Steak.

This was my first time cooking steak, and I used Ina’s “Steakhouse Steaks” recipe with her Roquefort Chive sauce. She uses filet mignons but I used sirloin. It got REAL smoky in the cast iron skillet, but the fire alarm was thankfully not set off (miraculously). They came out a little too done for my liking, but I’ll just have to play around and see. I didn’t really expect to get a perfect cook of meat on my first try ever. It wasn’t as charred as it looks in the picture; it was in fact, edible. The fries were frozen and the sauce was amazing, but how could it be anything but. Cheese + cream + herbs= thumbs up emoji. Full disclosure, I did use parsley instead of chives. Ya gurl isn’t about to drop a couple of bucks for one tablespoon of chives.

-Sophie

broiled grapefruit with yogurt and granola

Uhhh MORE FANCY BREAKFASTS? Of course. This was delicious and fancy but I did start feeling hungry about….twenty minutes after I ate. I rarely eat fruit, and NEVER eat just fruit for breakfast, but this idea came to me last night and I was realllll excited to try it this morning. I put brown sugar on the top and caramelized it in the broiler for 5-7 minutes, then topped it with vanilla Greek yogurt, a bit of cinnamon, and my homemade granola. It drips away the most delicious brown sugary-grapefruit juice that I was slurping up like an uncivilized dog. Would recommend….alongside a more substantial breakfast.

Today for dinner I tried to make a classic of both Ina Garten and my mother- chicken with goat cheese and basil. This was one of my favorite dinners that my mom made before I even knew who Ina was. It’s three ingredients and little to no preparation or cooking. But I can’t work with raw chicken, y’all, I really really can’t. I wish I could say to you that I didn’t almost start crying while touching the chicken, but sadly I cannot. I really can’t handle it like a mature adult. This is certainly one of the simplest recipe in all of Ina Garten’s repertoire, but I struggled with it HARD. I couldn’t loosen the chicken skin without screaming and then I couldn’t tell if it was done then I accidentally ate a piece of raw-ish chicken and then I set the smoke alarm off and had to air out my whole apartment aaaaaand it looked awful so I’m not even going to show it. GOD. Just enjoy the damn broiled grapefruit, byeeeeee

-Sophie

panko-crusted salmon

Excuse the photo quality…does the presence of panko bread crumbs make photos exceptionally grainy or what?? I call this work of mediocre art Panko-Crusted Salmon O’Er West Campus. Absence of my sister’s fancy camera aside, this is by far my new favorite Ina salmon recipe! Woo! SO good. The crust is a mix of panko, parsley, lemon zest, and olive oil, and you put down a layer of Dijon mustard to make the crust stick to the salmon. It’s crunchy and flavorful and the mustard makes it taste almost buttery (??). I found myself scraping the salmon skin just so I could eat as much of it as I possibly could. Seriously. Amazing.

I went grocery shopping today after kind of dinner-planning my week. Y’allllll……meat’s esssPENSIVE. The thought of having to purchase food for the rest of my life is exhausting. And I see a lot of dollar signs that I don’t have. But cooking still brings me so much joy. I find myself wondering whether or not I’m making smart choices, wanting to spend money to cook myself nice meals every day instead of eating out or eating cheap ramen. But then I realize that this is what the rest of my life’s going to be. So I might as well start now.

-Sophie

french toast

My first fancy breakfast in the new kitchen! I never DON’T eat breakfast, but it’s always oatmeal or English muffins or something, after I swore off cereal for at least some while (I guess I never realized that ~3 bowls a day was actually super bad for me). But this is a nice and fancy (yet quick) long weekend breakfast.

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Working in a bakery has made me an enormous bread snob. This summer I would constantly come home with free loaves of the most amazing bread, and now that I’m at school and currently unemployed (at a bakery or otherwise), I have to buy my own bread from the GROCERY STORE. I hated myself as I gazed down upon the HEB loaves and turned up my SNOBBY NOSE. I think I’ll be a snob forever.

I know in my head that during this long weekend, I need to “meal plan” for the upcoming week, but dammit it is HARD and there are NO Ina Garten cheap meal plans on the internet. Things are spoiling before I can use them and it’s stressing me out and it’s very difficult to shop for one. I’ll figure it out. As people do.

-Sophie

a medley of toast

Back from the dead with……avocado toast. I have now been settled into my kitchen for over a week, cooking my own meals, and I have only gone out to eat once. And it was an emergency. But I have been eating a lot of avocado toast, as is my habit. Today’s was especially appealing, though.

What I have learned to love about cooking is the trial and error. I like tinkering with a food until I see what I did wrong, and I like coming up with ways to fix it. That’s how these caramelized onions happened. I had struggled with them a few times before, always burning them or making some other mistake and I was so frustrated. There was nothing more I wanted than to make a perfect batch of caramelized onions. I finally figured it out the other day, leisurely stirring them over a low heat while I had a break between classes. I had the Food Network on and the apartment all to myself and I just devoted myself to the onions. For some reason, deglazing the pan with vinegar about 5 minutes before they’re done cooking then deglazing again with a little water about 30 seconds before they’re done cooking makes for an onion I really like….and a sprinkle of brown sugar doesn’t hurt either. I’ve been making batches now and letting them accumulate in my fridge and just putting them on every. little. thing.

Also, to hell with my little perfect-circle-fried-egg gadget from Bed Bath and Beyond. The egg would leak out from underneath the metal and I make a pretty perfect fried egg without a stencil now. SO THERE, CORPORATE CONGLOMERATES.

(I still love u BB&B)

-Sophie