Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Ok ok here is the recipe that everyone has been asking for!!

Janis's head: You know I keep telling them that I didn't invent this recipe or nothin. I just made it and it might be the best thing I ever tasted. It is a recipe from the blog "A Beautiful Bite". Pretty pretty blog.

Janis: Ok, well you told them it wasn't your recipe.

Janis's head: I did but they keep acting like I didn't tell them that.

Janis: Ok ok...shut up.

Ok, so here is the recipe that I promised to post. It was so very good. I mean it. It might have been close to one of the best things I have ever made.

Janis's head: The best thing you ever made? I think you are overstating again.

Totally worth making.

French Country Short Rib Stew
Adapted from A Beautiful Bite

4 lbs beef short ribs
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup olive oil + 1 Tbl
1 large onion, diced + 4 Onions thinly sliced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 cup red wine
1 14oz can diced tomatoes
4 cups beef broth
1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
2 Tbsp fresh thyme, minced
1 French baguette, cubed and toasted
8oz Gruyere, shredded

Preheat oven to 325º. Season short ribs with salt and pepper. Dredge in flour.

Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Cook short ribs in the oil until golden brown and crusty. About four minutes per side. Remove from oil and put on plate. Set aside.

Reduce heat to medium and cook onions and carrots in leftover fat from ribs. Cook for five minutes. Add garlic, red wine, tomatoes, broth, herbs and short ribs. Cover with lid and place in oven. Cook for two and a half hours or until meat falls off the bones.

Remove meat and place on a dish. Shred the beef.

Using a strainer, separate the solids from the liquids. (i.e. the veggies) Skim the fat off of the strained liquid using a spoon or a fat separator.

Once the fat is separated, add the veggies back to the liquid.

Heat pan over med heat and add 1 Tbl butter or olive oil. Sautee onions until carmelized (about 10 minutes)until golden brown.

Add the beef and carmelized onions and back to liquid and stir. Portion into oven safe bowls. Top with bread cubes and Gruyere.

Bake in a 450º oven until brown and bubbly.

And as an added bonus and because I promised my pal Sharon.... here is another recipe that was very very good that we made during the week. Perfect for a cold night.

Mexican Chicken Stew
Adapted from The Birthday Dinner

4 chicken legs (thigh and drumstick), separated

3 tablespoons of olive oil

1 red onion, sliced

3 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 dried ancho chilli pepper (optional, but way better)

1 jalapeño, sliced and seeded

1 teaspoon of dried cumin

1 teaspoon of ground coriander

2 bay leaves

1 bunch of cilantro

2 cups of chicken stock

1 large can of tomatoes

1 avocado

1 small can of white pinto beans

salt and pepper

Use a heavy pot and medium-high flame.  Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and place half your chicken in the pot.  You are going to want to do this in two batches. You are looking to get good color on all sides of the chicken. This takes about 3 minutes each side. Remove the chicken and set side. 

Turn the heat down to medium, add onions to the pot and season.  Cook the onions for about 10 minutes.  Caramelize them slowly.  Add garlic and jalapeño.  Cook for 3 more minutes.  While the onions are cooking, add dried ancho chilli to a food processor with a cup of hot/boiling water.  Let it steep for a couple minutes and then chop it up.  It should be close to pureed. 

Add the chicken back to the pot, and all the spices.  Cut the stalks off of the cilantro and tie them with string (for easy removal later). Reserve the tops for a garnish.  Add the cilantro stalks and the ancho chilli mixture to the pot. 

Deglaze the pot with the chicken stock and scrape the bottom. Bring to a simmer and reduce the stock by half, about 10 minutes, and then add the tomatoes.  Season and bring to a simmer.  Cook for another 30-40 minutes. 

Add pinto beans to pot about 10 minutes before you want to eat. Garnish with avocado and cilantro.

I know it doesn't look pretty. I wasn't planning on blogging any of this. My hordes of fans (read: 2) asked for these recipes and being the giving person I am I obliged.

Ok, I will go back into hiding now. Call my agent if you need me.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

New Best Chicken Ever Recipe

Janis's mind: Really? How many times can you call a chicken recipe "the best"?

Janis: I am entitled to change my mind.

Janis's mind: Pardon?

Janis: Nevermind...

So, I found a chicken recipe that I am crazy about. Before I share chicken stuff I want to share something better than chicken.

Ok. So this recipe is from the blog Feasting at Home What a beautiful blog. I bet she doesn't have to argue with her own brain. I bet she is MASTER over her own brain. I bet that people don't roll their eyes at her as if to say "just ignore her, she is harmless, just annoying". I bet her house is clean and everything matches. I bet she has cute things in her house like repurposed windows for decorations, and old farm ladders. I bet all her shit is perfect. I bet she isn't crass enough to say (let alone blog) the word shit...

Her chicken looks like THIS

Mine looks like...

I digress...

Before you get the recipe here are some pictures of what I have been doing the last couple of months. New Orleans (we love you Nik, thanks for being the best tour guide ever), L.A. Oakland. Babies. Yay!

fun a video by janis33 on Flickr.

Portuguese Chicken and Potatoes
by Sylvia Fountaine

1 Whole Chicken ( 3-4 lbs)
1 ½ lbs potatoes ( yukon or reds), thinly sliced

2 Dried Ancho Chilies-re hydrated
2 T smoked paprika
6 cloves garlic
1 T kosher salt
1 tsp coriander
1/4 C plus 1 T sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
1/4 C plus 1 T Olive Oil
1/2 tsp pepper

Cilantro Sauce:
1 C plain yogurt
1 bunch Cilantro- finely chopped
1/2 tsp kosher Salt
½ tsp coriander
Cracked pepper
1 T lemon juice

1 T olive oil

Preheat oven to 425F

Rehydrate dried chile's in small pot of boiling water on the stove for 20 minutes.

Butterfly chicken: Rinse inside and out, removing innards. Pat dry. Place on a cutting board, breast down. Using sharp kitchen scissors, cut along both sides of the spine, remove and discard. Turn the chicken over, and placing your hand on the breast bone, press down hard with the palm of your hand, to flatten. 

Make the marinade by blending the marinate ingredients into a paste with a blender or food processor. Brush a layer of marinade on the bottom of your baking pan. Place the thinly sliced potatoes on top of the marinade and sprinkle with a generous pinch of kosher salt. Brush all sides and crevasses of the chicken with the marinade, coating fairly heavily. ( You will add more marinade during cooking, so be sure to save the remaining.)

Place chicken, skin side down on the potatoes and place in the oven. Turn chicken over after 15 minutes, and place back in the oven. After 10-15 minutes, brush more marinade all over the chicken on the skin side, really lathering it up. Return to the oven and bake until cooked through another 15-20 minutes, or until leg/ thigh reaches internal temperature of 180 F.  To crisp the skin and get it deeply brown, broil for a few minutes. Remove chicken when done and let rest 5-10 minutes before serving.

While chicken is roasting, combine Cilantro Sauce ingredients together, either in a bowl- mixing by hand, or in a food processor. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Hey Coco's mom! Manchego Cheese Custard - Natillas de Queso Manchego


Ok, yes... I could communicate directly with Coco's mom. However, I am in a mad rush to get things going for Thanksgiving. I haven't even shopped yet. I also have 2 trips in the works and a guests for dinner next weekend. Oh wait! I also have a Xmas party to go to in there somewhere. So, I promised this recipe to Coco's mom (yes, I DO know her name but she is Coco's mom to me). I love Coco. Did I ever tell you that? You should see the ears on this pooch. I digress.

This dessert is wonderfully rich and really tasty. It did call for doing it in a mold and unmolding it but I laugh in the face of instructions. The following are my instructions. They are better than the original (so there!)

Manchego Cheese Custard - Natillas de Queso Manchego
adapted from La Tienda's website

1/3 lb ripe Manchego cheese, grated
1/2 cup sugar
4 eggs
1/2 liter cream
1/2 cup sugar to make the caramel
1 dozen walnuts

Place the sugar in the pan, sprinkle with water and caramelize over a hot flame. Coat the walls of ramekins with the caramel.

Beat the eggs with the sugar, add the very finely grated cheese and the cream. Beat together well and pour into the ramekins. Place in a dish of hot water and bake in a moderate oven for 30-40 minutes until, when a needle is inserted in the center, it comes out clean. Decorate with the walnut halves.

Oh wait! This salad was really good too but no one ate it.


and lookie here, we made our own lobster stock with these roasted lobster sells.


Okay okay I will go and get started on Thanksgiving...

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Ok, I do kind of miss you.

Janis: I kind of miss my blog

Janis's mind: Really???

Janis: Yeah, I really amused myself with it and cracked myself up.

Janis's mind: Pfffft. You are an idiot.

So, I decided that I wanted to share a great recipe and more importantly than that I wanted to share a picture of my new pumpkin.


Graham Everett Anderson. I love my new baby.


I love my best friend Parker. I love my Ricki too.

So, this is what has been going on since I last wrote. Sorta. I mean lots more than this but here is a glimpse.


Oh, and just wanted to say Happy early birthday to Evan. I love you Ev.

My favorite monkey.

Ok so what is the recipe? Totally embarassed to tell you that I don't have any pictures of me making it, eating it, it in perfect lighting, it in a light box getting cold so some blogger can put it up on a blog that no one reads. Sorta like this one. I have nada. Just my word and the recipe itself.

Maybe I should go back into hiding. I wasted most of the morning posting this and well, it just isn't all that exciting. I still crack myself up though.

Thai Beef with Basil
Bon Apetite Nov. 2013

2 Tbsp vegetable oil, divided
6 Garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 red chiles, thinly sliced and seeded, divided
1 lb ground beef
Kosher salt, fresh ground pepper
1/2 C Chicken broth
3 C fresh basil leaves, divided
2 Medium carrots, julienned or coarsely grated
2 scallions, thinly sliced
4 Tbsp fresh lime juice, divided
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp sugar

steamed rice and lime wedges for serving

Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add garlic and 1 chili and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add beef, season with salt and pepper, and cook, breaking up with a spoon and pressing down firmly to help brown, until cooked through and nicely crisped in spots 8-10 minutes. Add broth and 2 C basil and cook, stirring, until basil is wilted, about 2 min.

Toss carrots, scallions, 1 Tbsp lime juice and remaining chili, 1 C basil leaves and 1 Tbsp oil in small bowl.

Mix soy sauce, fish sauce, sugar and remaining 3 Tbsp lime juice in another small bowl until sugar dissolves.

Top rice with beef and slaw and drizzle with soy dressing. Serve lime wedges alongside.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A Public Service Announcement. No more... no less.

See the picture above? This is the most perfect bowl of food. It is nothing fancy. It is nothing that unusual. It is perfect. Do you ever have a bite of something and it reminds you so strongly of something from your past. For me it is a weird one (go figure). The smell of limes and mint are just magical in my book. The smell of limes and tequila too but I will save that for another time. Limes in Mexican food, Limes in Asian food. It reminds me of something. Mint does the same to me.

This bowl of perfection is Bun. The recipe came from Charles Phan. One bite of this food and the flavor punches you in the kisser and makes you fall in love. Be careful who you are dinning with...

Vermicelli (Bun) Bowls

Rice Noodles, cooked, drained, and cooled
Pickled carrots (recipe below)
Shredded lettuce
Spearmint sprigs
Cilantro sprigs
Grilled Shrimp (recipe below)

Put it all in a bowl and sprinkle special fish sauce (recipe below) on it.

Simple Grilled Shrimp

1/2 cup white sugar
2 Tbl kosher salt
1 Tbl minced garlic
1-1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbl canola oil
1 lb medium sized shrimp, peeled and deveined

1. In a medium bowl combine sugar, salt, garlic and black pepper. Pour 3/4 cup of hot water over the mixture and stir until sugar and salt dissolve completely. Stir in the oil and let cool to room temp.

2. Prepare a medium-hot fire for direct heat grilling in a charcoal grill. Add shrimp to cooled liquids. Toss to coat and then transfer to grill.

Pickled Carrots

1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 kosher salt
1/2 cup peeled and finely julienned carrots

In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, sugar, and salt and stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Add carrots and let stand at least 20 minutes before serving. If not using right away, cover an refrigerate for up to a week. Drain the carrots well before using.

Flavored Fish Sauce

1/2 cup fish sauce
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
2 cloves garlic
1 to 2 thai chiles, stemmed and minced

In a small bowl, combine fish sauce, sugar, vinegar, and 1/2 cup water and stir until sugar has dissolved. Add garlic and chilies and stir to combine. Use immediately, or refrigerate for up to 1 week.

This concludes my public service announcement.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Existential Crisis or just sick of chicken?


I have always been sort of the down beat type of person. Here I stand at the ripe age of 2 or 3 pissed off at the world. Would you believe me if I told you I have turned a new leaf. Actually, I turned that leaf when I started realizing that I am a wastin time. I have given up on being mad. I am done with being around negative negative negative. Ever notice how much people complain? Not that I am complaining about it. Is anyone ever happy? I saw a post on my FB feed of someone that was happy and felt lucky for it. It made me want to kiss my screen. Well maybe not kiss it but you know what I mean.


My other modus operandi was to try and make people laugh. Truth of the matter I was the youngest...need I say more? I am not sure if this prank was intentional or not. I am betting it was. So what does this all have to do with cooking? In a convoluted way it does. Blogging people make me pissed off. Myself included. What is it for? It is kinda bullshit. So, I am done. I don't want a book deal. I don't want free samples (although more on that later). I want to live my life in the moment.

Janis: I want to live in the moment.

Brain: Pfffft.

Janis: What?

Brain: How pretentious can you be?

Janis: I mean it.

Brain: Yeah, lets see how that goes...


Unnamed company sent me some Vegan, Noodle and Rice samples. Actually they sent me a lot of them. I ate a package of them and had a dilemma. They were disgusting. I appreciate that they sent them to me but what does one do when free product taste like crap? You quit blogging because if you can't be honest what is the point?


So we have been eating but not much cooking. Here stands roasted on the green egg turkey. It was great and you HAVE to try the rub recipe. That is stove top stuffing. That is canned peas. Now you see why I am having a crisis?


Dr. Food smoked some short ribs. Something about Cherry Dr. Pepper...yada yada yada.


This coleslaw was awesome. Simple and awesome. A coleslaw margarita!

So, that is about it. I might write again and I might not. I just don't like feeling like I have to do it. No one is putting that on me but me.


I am gonna go make maraschino cherries.

Tequila Slaw with Lime and Cilantro
Cooking Light

1/4 C Canola mayo
3 Tbl lime juice
1 Tbl tequila
2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/3 C thinly sliced green onion
1/4 C chopped cilantro
1/2 head cabbage (recipe calls for 14oz packagek of coleslaw but really?)

Throw it all together and toss.

Oleta's Poultry Rub

I got it on line. It was someones ex-mother-in-laws recipe.

2tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion salt
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 Tbl oil
2 Tbl lime juice

1. Mix dry ingredients together well in a small bowl
2. Slather the turkey down with the oil and the lime juice and massage on the rub.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Short Rib Burgers, Swimming Pools, Indian Potatoes that almost made me cry.


So, it is turning to Summer and I love it. I used to love the rain and cold but now that the rain and cold are the norm, I love Summer.


I bought Dr. Food a new toy for his Birthday. Pffft. I know his birthday isn't until September something. I just thought that buying it now so he could use it for the whole summer would be good. Little did I know that he would want to cook every meal on it. Smoked Cheerios not so good.


So, I wanted Korean burgers. Yeah, all of a sudden I woke up and thought "Janis! I think you need to go find some short ribs to grind up to make Korean Burgers!" Yeah, no, it didn't happen that way. Actually it happened like this:

Janis: Shit, what am I going to make for dinner tonight. Dr. Food will want to use that damn egg to cook on.

Janis: Well, you could just do some chicken.

Janis: I am sick of chicken.

Janis: Lets make Korean Burgers!

That isn't quite how it happened either. More like I felt like Korean food so I went to my favorite Korean cookbook (Kimchi Chronicles)and found a recipe for Tteokgalbi (what? You think it was pretentious that I called it that because I am not korean? Yes, I am an honorary Korean!) ok ok burgers.


So, I went and bought shortribs. I actually found boneless shortrib. I ground it up in the Cuisinart. I didn't even have to drag out the meat grinder.


Dr. Food made the ground meat into patties and we were good to go. I sat back and sipped on a cocktail while Dr Food grilled these puppies up.


Yum. That is all I can say. Yum. These were so good that neither of us spoke. We just ate.




I made a Korean potato salad and something else that I don't remember what it was. What? No, I am not going senile. I know we just had this a few nights ago. Shut up. I know that it was a salad with jicama and asian pear, and cabbage and a lot of stuff that I had to stand there and cut into small pieces. It just wasn't worth it. Dr. Food almost made "that face".

Ok, the potatoes. It wasn't for the same dinner but they are so good that I can't stop making this. Ok, maybe that is a bit of an overstatement. I made it twice so far.


It isn't hard to make at all. I am begging you to make these.


I warn you that they are addictive.


So now what? Nothin....

Tteokgalbi (Seasoned Short Rib Burgers)
Marja Vongerichten The Kimchi Chronicles

1 1/2lb ground short ribs (If you can't find short rib you can substitute ground meat). I simply bought 3lbs of boneless short rib and ground it myself. You can also buy 3lbs of bone in and take it off the bone and grind it.

1 tablespoon finely minced garlic

1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger

3 tablespoons grated Korean pear

2 scallions, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

1 teaspoon roasted sesame seeds

1/2 teaspoon course salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat grill to high or preheat a ridged cast iron grill pan over high heat.

Use your hands to gently mix together all of the ingredients just enough to combine and form into burgers. Grill to desired doneness.

Masala Roasted Potatoes
US Masala

12-15 baby red potatoes (washed and halved)
3 fat cloves minced garlic
1" minced ginger
3 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp turmeric
salt to taste
1 tsp chaat masala
2 chopped (I used one) green chili
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
4 to 5 curry leaves (I used them once and didn't use them once and there wasn't that much difference)
1/2 cup packed cilantro and mint leaves
2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp (or to taste) cayenne pepper powder

Preheat oven to 400F.

Grease a large non stick pan and add potatoes.

In a medium pan add oil on medium heat. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, followed by the curry leaves. Allow them to sputter. Add the chili, ginger and garlic and cook for a minute. Add the salt and turmeric and take off heat. Pour over potatoes making sure to stir to coat evenly.

Bake until tender and brown about 25-30 minutes. Stir every 10 minutes or so so they brown evenly. Remove from oven and stir in the cilantro, mint, chaat masala, cayenne pepper and lemon juice.