Tag Archives: beef

THE MOST BADASS MEATZZA YOU’VE NEVER HAD! (But will again!)

It was a drizzly, blackened evening.

Damp leaves and soggy grass threatened to give way under my feet as I stumbled out of my last bus onto the grass, up the hill to a cat walk.

Going home.

My trusty backpack full of groceries.

I went to Whole Paycheck after work and barely broke $13:

6 organic avocados (on sale)
1 bag frozen broccoli (on sale)
1 bag frozen butternut squash (ditto)
1 large bunch of locally grown spinach

Upon arriving, I got to work in the kitchen. I seared two large pieces of beef shank (that’s osso bucco to you fine readers of mine), and threw a large guillotined head of cauliflower into the crock pot. The cauliflower was sharing the space with a gelatinous goo of pork scraps, onions, garlic, rosemary and other casualties of a long, drawn out pork butt crock pot war.

A local grocery store makes awesome, made-from-de-scratch soup in a jar. Their tomato soup is excellent, and this week, I bought a sweet potato and leek concoction. Delicious. This soup was poured over the cauliflower and just arriving beef shanks, browned and glistening in slick fat, marrow and blood. A final oddment of leftover chicken broth was added at the end, a dash of chopped red onion, a few bits of rosemary. Lid on. Low heat, 8 hours. Done.

Two packages of ground meat were glaring at me from the fridge.

Ah, crap. I’m so hungry. That meat must be made.

Roughly one and a half pounds each of grass-fed beef, and ground lamb.

I threw this mixture together with a random mix of vegetable drawer leftovers. Insignificant carrots, celery. Garlic. Onions. Fresh parsley. The last wave of potent garlicky chicken broth I’d made to stave off illness this past week.

A clever assortment of flavours and textures. As I was mixing, I thought:

Meatloaf.

Bacon on top.

In the oven. Like last week. Yeah. That’ll be tasty.

Ahhh…

No.

Burgers. Let’s make burgers. Yes. Good. Okay.

Brow furrows. Batman scowl.

No.

Then, a thought. A twinkle. A big grin.

OH MY GOD.

This is going to be the MOST BADASS MEATZZA EVER!

Ensuing happy dance.

I’ve done meatzza before. I love it. I actually haven’t made some in a while. Probably because I usually put red peppers on my meatzza, but my body is like, uh, no. We don’t like that. 

Edited March 27th, 2015. I was never ‘intolerant’ to red peppers or any of the hundreds (yes, hundreds) of foods that my IgG blood test said I was. Those tests are bogus.

Fine.

FINE!!!

Bacon fat ensnares taste buds, pleases the belly and brings joy wherever it is mixed in to. Crunchy, crumbled bacon bits top this meatzza that is lovingly draped with wilted spinach, and a merry mix of chopped grape tomatoes.

I don’t care if Jules thinks pigs are filthy animals. He’d eat this badass mother of a meatzza.

I have to watch me some Pulp Fiction soon.

Dig in.

Let joy ensue.

BADASS MEATZZA THAT YOU’VE NEVER HAD (BUT WILL AGAIN)

1.5 lbs ground grass fed beef
1.5 lbs ground lamb
3/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1 large garlic clove, smashed, chopped, obliterated
2 small stalks of celery, thinly sliced
2 – 3 small carrots, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chicken broth
A few splashes of homemade soup (Don’t have any? Don’t worry about it)
Small bunch of celery leaves, chopped
Small handful of fresh parsley, chopped
Fresh rosemary
Salt and pepper

Preheat your oven to a hot 375 degrees. Combine this meat and veg amalgam thoroughly. I mean, really. Get in there. Take off your jewelry, watch, and bracelet. Maybe put your hair up. Maybe put on some music. But get in there, dammit!

Make a ball.

Flatten said meat and veg ball onto a baking sheet. I have a typical round pizza one that I used this time, but you don’t have to. When you’re flattening your ball, make sure it’s nice and even. I even formed a bit of a crust around the edges. Toss that bad boy into the oven. Give it 15, 20 minutes tops.

You smell that?

That’s happy.

In the oven.

Take out your ‘crust’. There will be a pool of liquid and fat. Drain this carefully, but don’t toss it! Use it for soup, or for boiling some sweet potatoes in, or squash, cauliflower. That’s flavour, baby. Don’t waste it.

For shame.

Next, crank your oven to broil.

You will need:

1/2 pint grape tomatoes, chopped
2 handfuls of spinach, chopped
2 slices bacon

Chop up your bacon into bits and bites and fry it up until browned and crispy. Scoop out the bacon and set it aside. Don’t eat it. I know it’s tempting. Hell, I’d do it.

Use half the rendered bacon fat as your ‘sauce’. Spread it evenly over the base.

Toss your spinach into the remaining bacon fat on high. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook until just wilted. Baby spinach would be perfect for this, but the adult kind is all I had.

Spread your wilted, bacon infused spinach over the base of your meatzza. Add your chopped tomatoes, and crumble that bacon on top. Salt and pepper.

This now goes into your smoking hot oven.

Now.

WATCH THIS!

Don’t step away for too long.

Use your nose! If it smells good. it’s DONE. The edges of your meatzza will be dark and crusty, the tips of tomatoes barely singed.

Slide this badass mother onto a cutting board. Wait a few minutes.

If you can.

I guess…

Cut it up.

Eat.

Love,
me

Tagged , , , , ,

Thor Would Eat Bone Marrow…or, Osso Buco

Julie and Charles Mayfield are a wonderful couple, who wrote Paleo Comfort Foods. This cookbook is so full of win. Today, I thought I would try my hand at their Osso Buco recipe, granted…I took liberties and didn’t have all the ingredients. So, it’s more like my bastardization of their recipe. It turned out fabulous and delicious.

Edited March 27th, 2015. I haven’t touched that cookbook in years. Ain’t gonna, neither!

But, before I go into it, I gotta talk about my day yesterday.

I WAS SO BAGGED YESTERDAY. I had a rotten night sleeping. When I came home from work, I plopped myself on the couch and watched some videos on TED. I heart TED Talks so bad. Anyway, I actually fell asleep during a video, sitting upright on the couch, Mac in my lap. I woke up a few minutes later. The video was over, and I was like ‘Eff this’, so I put my lappy aside, curled up into a ball on the couch and passed out immediately. I slept like a cat! Deep, wonderful, heavy sleep. The phone rang. I heard it. Nahhhhhhhhh. I’m too cozy. My cat Harry was whining like the bitch he is. Bah. I don’t care. Sleeeeeeeep is so nice right now. I slept for a good two-and-a-half hours! I woke up groggy, and felt like I could sleep for days. But man, did it ever feel good to nap!

When wifey came home from her mother’s, we made tea, and watched Thor. Thor is so badass, I’ve seen it three times in two days. Yes, that’s right. Three times, in two days! I’m a comic book movie nut, so this is perfectly normal to me. After the movie, I was still pretty tired, and going to sleep at a reasonable hour was still perfectly do-able.

When your body is telling you something you ate is bad, or you’re lacking sleep, you have to listen to it. There are repercussions when you don’t listen: you get sick, your productivity goes way down, you feel mentally exhausted. We must listen to our bodies, as they are, in a way, our own internal doctor. When eating and living Primal, we tend to use ourselves as on-going science experiments. We study and read fervently, tweak things, try something different, cater and listen to our bodies.

Speaking of listening to our bodies, this afternoon, I was starving and started whipping up this recipe for Osso Buco. It is an Italian meal of veal shanks with the bone-in, chock full of nutritious, incredible marrow. It is cooked slowly until tender and truly nourishing.

This recipe is for two, but double it and have leftovers!

Osso Buco with Peppers and Onions

2 veal shanks
1 large onion, cut into large chunks
1 orange pepper, 1 yellow pepper, cut into chunks
3 – 4 carrots, cut into chunks
1/2 can of crushed tomatoes
3 – 4 garlic cloves, chopped
Lard, or coconut oil
2 tablespoons each: sage, marjoram, tarragon, rosemary
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup of bone broth or beef broth

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Preheat a large frying pan on medium high, add your lard or coconut oil, about 2 tablespoons. Season the veal with salt and pepper, and add them to the pan. They’re sizzling, right? Good. Now, don’t touch ’em! Leave them for about 3 – 4 minutes. When you’re ready, carefully flip ’em on the other side.

Once these are beautifully browned, remove them carefully from the pan and set them aside on a plate. Your pan should still be hot, so add your onions in, and season with salt and pepper. Get them nice and browned, stirring or tossing like the professionals do, if you are so inclined. Next, add your peppers and garlic. Cook for a few more minutes. Careful not to burn your garlic. Add your sage, rosemary, marjoram and tarragon. Your veggies should be caramelizing beautifully, turning a rich, dark brown. That’s perfect! Add your beef/bone broth to deglaze the pan. Next, add in your crushed tomatoes.

Add this huge pan full of gorgeous veggies to a large baking dish. Add in your veal shanks on top. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil, and stick ‘er in the oven for about 1.5 hours, to possibly 1 hour and 45 minutes. This really depends on the size of your shanks, and your oven.

I demolished this meal. It was filling, flavourful and yes, I ate the marrow! Stick your knife down there, and scoop out the buttery, tasty goo. Don’t look at me like that. Just effing try it! Wifey tried it, and commented that it tasted like oats or barley. I have to agree. But richer, and creamier.

Enjoy your Osso Buco! Let me know how you like eating bone barrow 😉

Tagged , , ,

Whoa! Mini-Meatloafs…Meatloaves…Muffins. Whatever.

Inspired by Juli of PaleOMG, I decided to make use of my now non-useful muffin pan. Behold! Mini-Mealoafs! Meatloaves. I dunno which one is proper, but “meatloaves” does look pretty weird. Gotta agree with Juli on this one. You could also call them Meatloaf Muffins, but uh, that sounds kind of odd too.

Edited March 27th, 2015. No more PaleOMG for me. NOPE NOPE NOPE.

Or, just call them DAMN GOOD. Cuz they are.

Mini-Meatloaves with Smokey Tomato and Red Pepper Sauce

1/4 or 1/8 of that roast beef you made the other night (cuz I know you made it, right?!), chopped into what I’ll call ‘beef lardons’ or itty bitty cubes
2 – 3 pounds of lean or extra lean ground beef
Coconut oil + butter (or lard, or combo)
1/2 of a medium to large white onion
2 – 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons of almond flour/meal
1/4 can of coconut milk
1 of each: red pepper, yellow pepper, green pepper
2 – 4 tablespoons of chipotle powder
2 – 4 tablespoons of paprika
1 – 2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons rubbed dry sage
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon cumin powder
salt and pepper

Sauce:
1 extra clove of garlic, unpeeled
3/4 cup crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup beef or bone broth
Paprika, about 1 teaspoon
Red pepper flakes, to taste
1 – 2 tablespoons coconut milk
Salt

First off, cut off a hunk of that roast beef you made the there night thanks to moi, and slice yourself some pieces about 1/4″ inch thick. Now, cut them into tiny cubes, or what I’m calling ‘beef lardons’, French term for the exact same thing, only with pork. Set this aside.

Add your ground beef to a large mixing bowl. Season generously with salt and pepper. Chop up your green and yellow pepper into a dice, and add them to the bowl. Add your ‘beef lardons’ to the bowl, as well as your almond meal, coconut milk, most of your chipotle powder (reserve about a teaspoon), sage, chopped cilantro, cumin, garlic powder, paprika.

Now, onto something completely different. Pre-heat your frying pan to about medium heat, and add your choice of coconut oil, butter or lard. I used a coconut oil/butter combo. Saute your onions in this mixture until lightly browned and translucent. Add a teaspoon of your reserved chipotle powder. Stir. Inhale. Ahhhhh. Love that smell! Add your garlic at the end, and stir gently just to heat it through. There is nothing worse than burnt garlic. Take this off the heat. Allow this mixture to cool.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. If your mixture is cool by now, add it to your huge bowl of food stuffs! Now…are you ready to get yer hands dirty? Dunk both your hands in and start mixing this all together. Really work on this; you want everything combined nicely. I work this for about 5 minutes, or until everything looks well marbled together.

Yes, marbled!

A cool trick I learned from Roger Mooking from the Food Network, is to make a tiny patty of this mixture, and fry it up. How else are you going to know if it tastes good? So, have at it. Mine was awesome. This means…it’s time to make your Mini Mealoaves…Meatloafs…Muffins…whatever.

I formed the mixture into balls about 3″ in diameter. If it fits nicely in your palm, you’re good to go. Pop each of these bad boys into each muffin tin, and press down just a tad. I oiled my pan with some olive oil. I later realized I didn’t need to. You’ll soon read why.

This quantity makes about 9 of these tasty guys.

Pop ’em in the oven for about 25 minutes. After about 15 minutes, I turned the heat down to 325. Now, watch them. Turn on your vent. The fat and juice will render out and *may* make your kitchen a smoky mess. Or maybe my oven sucks. I set off both smoke alarms, had the vent going, and had to open windows and doors. Wifey was not impressed.

Edited to add: Sister-in-laws are so SMART! I don’t know why I didn’t think of this: put a pan or baking sheet at the bottom of your oven to catch drippings. This will ensure they don’t burn and turn your kitchen into a smoke-house 🙂

ANYWAY. There’s one more thing: sauce!

Add your tomato sauce, one chopped red pepper, one unpeeled garlic clove, paprika, bone/beef broth, chilli pepper flakes, and salt to a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Turn the heat way down, and let this simmer while your loaves are cooking.

After 25 minutes, you will have beautifully browned, juicy, flavourful loaves. Take them out to cool.

I hope you have an immersion blender, also known as a stick blender, or a plain ol’ blender or food processor will do. Make sure you take that garlic clove out, give it a slight squeeze. It’ll pop out of its skin. Blitz your tomato and pepper mixture and add the 1-2 tablespoons of coconut milk to it. Now you’ve got an awesome sauce! Yes, you do!

Place one or two of these awesome loaves onto a plate, slice them open, and pour that awesome sauce you made over them. Devour.

Enjoy!

Tagged , , , , , ,