Dinner was so good last night, unexpectedly so. I had gone to the beach and was cold (thankfully, blissfully), even wrapped up in beach towels. I shivered and my thoughts eventually turned to dinner. When one is hot-hot-hot, one does not want to think of cooking food much. We have a lot of cereal nights, breakfast nights, sandwich nights. But when cold, its a different story. In fact I thought of Salisbury steaks right away. You know, those pseudo-steaks they came up with during the depression when food was rationed and real steaks were dear? Well, food may not be rationed, but steaks are as dear as ever, especially if you want to get grass fed, organic meat.
Anyway, dinner turned out so good I forgot to take a picture of it and just dug in and ate. The only pic I got is a blurry one of my secret ingredient:
It was not just the Salisbury steak, but the gravy turned out perfect, the corn I cut off the cob with my handy-dandy pampered chef cob cutter, which I then sauteed in butter, the mashed potatoes with buttermilk, it all turned out so yummy. So quick, before I forget, I will write down what I did and how I did it for next time.
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 1 egg white, lightly beaten
- 1/3 cup chopped onion (or 1/2 pkg onion soup mix
- 1/4 cup saltine crackers, crunched into crumbs
- 2 Tbsp milk
- 1 Tbsp prepared horseradish sauce
- salt and pepper
- 1 onion, sliced
- 8 oz mushrooms, sliced
- some flour on a plate
- flour, from plate
- 1/2 box beef broth (more or less)
- 2 Tbsp butter
- few splashes of red wine
Lets roll up our sleeves, put on a working apron and get started.
The first thing I did was crunch up the crackers and, in a large mixing bowl, mixed the meat, the crackers, the egg, onion or soup mix, milk, horseradish, salt and pepper. I reached in a squished it all up by hand. Then I reached in again and formed 4 large and 1 small oval patties out of it, flattened it a bit too. I dipped each one in the plate of flour to dredge.
Heat your skillet with some oil. When hot, add the patties. Cook about 3-4 minuted, until browned and turn to brown the other side. When done, bring them out with a spatula and set on a plate to stay warm. (maybe cover with foil, if it is not a hot summer evening)
Now, in the same skillet, add some olive oil and maybe a bit of butter. Saute the onions and when lightly browning, add the mushrooms. Saute all until browned and soft, under a slow heat.
Take a Tbsp or 2 really, of flour from your dredging plate. Sprinkle that over your veggies. Brown for 1 minute. Add a couple splashed of red wine. I think that is what made the gravy so wonderful this time. I usually use 2 buck chuck from Trader Joes, the Merlot. But this time I happened to have an opened bottle of Peachy Canyon Winery Zinfandel, so I used it. Much better, lent a bit of sweetness to the sauce. Anyway, lets see, the veggies are soft, the flour is cooked, the wine is added. Okay, now add the broth, slowly, stirring it around and simmer on medium low heat. I added a couple Tbsp of butter for added silkiness. Add more broth if it looks too thick, but don’t worry if it looks too thin, it will thicken up with the meat and as liquid evaporates.
Put the beef patties back in the skillet and put a lid on it. Go about your business with the rest of dinner or setting the table and let it simmer about 20 minutes, turning the patties over after 10 minutes.
This is marvelous served over mashed potatoes or rice!
Spray a skillet with non stick and add 2 Tbsp. butter. Heat on low.
I had 4 corn on the cobs. After shucking, I scrapped the kernels off with my special scrapper. If you don’t have one, use a knife. Then go back with the back of the knife and scrape again, to get the milky corn juice out. I do this right into the skillet. (Quick before it gets too hot)
Now just saute the corn in butter. Add pats of butter if it gets too dry and sticky looking. I sauteed about 10 minutes and it was wonderful. Just add some salt at the end.
Buttermilk mashed potatoes
This is just like regular mashed potatoes, but with buttermilk. I was almost out of milk and had an unopened buttermilk that was dated today! I like to have buttermilk around for pancakes, coffeecake, donuts, rolls, oh, countless things. But its been too hot to think about baking, so it has been sitting there. (I made grannies pancakes with them today.) So instead of milk, I used buttermilk. I tell you, I was trepidatious, but it came out wonderful, flavorful. Then topped with the gravy (which I am generally not a fan of) oh my goodness! Just writing this makes me hungry all over again!