Thursday, January 31, 2013

Pulled Pork in a Pressure Cooker

I was really excited to continue you bourbon experimentation and pressure cooker experimentation with pulled pork but to get a good flavor I had to cook it some more after it was pulled so it didn't end up being a very quick solution to pulled pork. More testing is probably in order. 

Here's what I did. 

Covered the pork butt in Worcestershire sauce and rubbed on a rub (I made mine with paprika, dry mustard, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, brown sugar, salt, pepper). Then I let it rest for half an hour. 
Put some olive oil in the bottom of the cooker, add
1 onion and 6 cloves garlic
Once those are cooked sear the pork then add the liquid
1/2 cup bbq sauce
a beer (Magic Hat #9)
1/2 cup bourbon
3/4 cup apple cider
2 1/2 cups water

Position 2 for 60 minutes. Be sure not to overfill the pressure cooker

After 60 minutes, let pressure release naturally, remove the pork, let it rest a few minutes and use forks to pull the meat.

It was fine but I wasn't thrilled with tenderness or flavor, so I put everything (pork in one container, sauce it cooked in in another) in the fridge overnight to think about how to improve the flavor.

The next day I took out the sauce and removed the fat from the top. Then I let it simmer and reduce for about an hour, added pulled pork and let simmer in broth until it was all heated and coated.

 And used it for pulled pork sliders.

What's pulled pork without BBQ sauce?
I've been using this bourbon BBQ sauce recipe I found at epicurious

Put the following in a pot on the stove:
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup bourbon
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
3 Tablespoons molasses
3 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons worcestershire
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 Tablespoon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons liquid smoke
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic posder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Bring everything to a boil then reduce to a simmer and let cook about 10 minutes, stirring periodically

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Spiked Grit y Polenta Bites

Today's bourbon experiment - I had a hard time deciding on a name - was grits/polenta with bourbon, cheese & scallions, cut into cubes and fried. 

Grit y Polenta Cubes:
5 cups of water
1 cup of grits
salt & pepper 
1 Tablespoon bourbon
Bring water to a boil, whisk in grits, salt & pepper, reduce heat to low and let simmer about 19 minutes,  stirring occasionally, and bourbon and cook for 1 more minute
While cooking 
grate 1 cup of cheddar
chop the whites of 2 scallions
mince 3 cloves of garlic 
When grits are done cooking add cheddar, scallions and garlic and put in greased 8 x 8 baking pan 

Refrigerate until firm, then cut into cubes. I waited  a day before I fried them. 

Frying Polenta Cubes:
Whisk together
2 eggs
1/2 cup of milk
In a separate bowl mix together
spices - I used salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne, turmeric, thyme, cinnamon

Put vegetable oil in a pan on the stove
put cubes in egg/milk mixture
then put in flour mixture
when oil is hot cook coated cubes until golden

Monday, January 28, 2013

Bourbon Brown Sugar Cheesecake Bites

I like a good cheesecake and but have never attempted to make one before. So here was my first attempt.

Step 1, make the crust
            In a food processor combine 
            1/3 cup pecans
            4 (full size, rectangular) original graham crackers
            4 (full size, rectangular) chocolate graham crackers
            1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
            6 Tablespoons butter

           Once everything is finely ground and well mixed press into the bottom of a springform pan 

Step 2, make the filling 
            Preheat the oven to 350
            In a mixer combine the following one at a time
            24 ounces of softened cream cheese
            4 eggs
            3 Tablespoons bourbon
            1 teaspoon vanilla
            1 cup packed dark brown sugar

           Once well combined without lumps, pour over crust - put a rimmed baking sheet underneath to catch grease 
           Bake for 40 minutes, center will still be a little squishy
           Remove from oven, leave oven on

Step 3, make the topping 
            16 ounces sour cream
            2 Tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
            1 teaspoon vanilla 

           while the cheesecake is resting, combine the ingredients for the topping 
           gently spread over filling layer
           return to the oven for 10 minutes

 Step 4, cool
           let cheesecake cool then cover and refrigerate overnight
           when you're ready to eat cut it into slices 
           or as I prefer because cheesecake is always so rich, cut it into bites 


Friday, January 25, 2013

More Bourbon Cocktails

 Ginger Julep 
1½ ounce bourbon

1 ounce lime juice

1 medium piece candied ginger
¼ tsp. molasses
3 oz. bitter lemon soda

Muddle ginger with all liquids except for the soda. 
Serve over ice in a short glass and top with lemon soda. 

Port-Whiskey Punch 
1 1/2 ounces bourbon whiskey 
1 1/2 ounces fresh-squeezed orange juice
1 1/2 ounces fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 ounce simple syrup
1 ounce port
Lemon twist
Orange slice

Combine whiskey, orange, lemon juices and syrup and shake well
Strain into highball glass filled with ice, top with port and garnish with lemon and orange

Stiletto Cocktail
serves 2

6 ounces Amaretto
3 ounces Kentucky bourbon
2 ounces fresh lemon juice
2 Tablespoons sugar syrup

Fill a shaker with ice & ingredients
Shake vigorously to blend and chill

Put ice in  2 old fashioned glasses
Strain mixture into glasses

Taylor Made

1 1/2 ounces bourbon 
1 ounce fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice
1 ounce cranberry juice
1/2 ounce honey syrup
1/4 ounce Velvet Falernum

Combine ingredients and shake well with ice
Strain into a cocktail glass

Bourbon Snacks

As bars have known for years when putting out peanuts or other snacks it's nice to have a little snack when enjoying a drink. It's also a good way for a bar to make you thirsty so you'll order more drinks...

Take the Old-Fashioned out of the glass and use it to glaze Pecans

1/4 cup bourbon
1/4 cup dried cherries
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
8 ounce package raw pecans
2 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon orange zest

Quarter the dried cherries and soak them in the bourbon for at least half an hour
Put the pecans in a pan on the stove over medium heat and cook for about 4 minutes, then add the butter, let it melt and coat the pecans
Mix the dry ingredients (except orange zest) in to the pan
Add the bourbon and cherries, stirring and cooking until a glaze forms, remove from heat
Toss in the orange zest
Spread pecans on parchment paper and let the pecans cool.

Sweet & Spicy Bacon Bourbon Snack Mix

6 1/2 cups Corn Chex cereal or generic equivalent
5 1/2 cups Honey-nut Chex cereal or generic equivalent
2 cups small pretzels
2 cups roasted peanuts
1 cup pecans
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
3/4 cup butter (1.5 sticks)
3 Tablespoons bourbon
1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
* 1 pound crispy cooked chopped bacon (Optional)

Mix together cereal, pretzels, nuts & bacon, unless you're making a vegetarian option then leave out the bacon. Heat the butter & Brown sugar on the stove for 5 minutes, stirring constantly, then let cool for 2 minutes. Stir in bourbon and spices. Pour over the dry ingredients, spread out on rimmed cookie sheet in single layer and bake at 300 for 40 minutes. Stir every 10 minutes.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Pear Bourbon Sundae

Warmed poached pears and bourbon vanilla sauce over vanilla ice cream

Bourbon Poached Pears 
In a pot on the stove, dissolve
2 cups sugar
2 cups water
1/4 vanilla bean
Once sugar is dissolved add
3 Tablespoons bourbon
2 pears (or peaches if they're in season), quartered with seeds removed
Let simmer until pears soften
Store pears in syrup and reheat them on the stove when ready to serve

Bourbon Vanilla Sauce 
1/2 cup water
2 cups sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, split in half
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoon bourbon

Put sugar and water in pot on the stove and cook until sugar dissolves and liquid starts to brown, swirling pot every once in awhile. Reduce heat and slowly stir in cream with wooden spoon, scrape in vanilla seeds and add pod. Add rest of ingredients, stir until well combined

Bourbon Balls

Kentucky Bourbon Balls

1 cup chopped pecans
5 Tablespoons bourbon
1/2 cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar, & a little extra
18 ounces semisweet chocolate

Combine nuts and bourbon in a jar and allow to sit over night
In a food processor combine butter and sugar, add bourbon soaked pecans
Form into balls, roll in powdered sugar and refrigerate until firm
Melt chocolate and coat balls

Bourbon Pecan Truffles

1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
2 Tablespoons bourbon
1 cup finely chopped pecans
* optional chocolate to melt and coat truffles

Bring the cream to a boil, remove from heat and whisk in chocolate until melted and smooth, add bourbon. Refrigerate until cool, form into balls, refrigerate again until firm. Roll truffles in chopped pecans. If truffles are too soft and melty roll them in melted chocolate and top with pecan.

Cocoa Dusted Bourbon Pecan Balls

Combine the following in a food processor
1 Tablespoon powder sugar
2 cups (a 5.82 package) vanilla wafer cookie crumbs
1/2 cup toasted pecans
1/3 cup bourbon
3 Tablespoons honey
form in to balls

2 Tablespoons unsweetned cocoa powder
3/4 cup powdered sugar
roll balls in powder

Bourbon Fudge

12 ounce package semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 can 14 ounce sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup bourbon
slivered almonds

Put milk on the stove, stir in chocolate chips until melted and smooth
Remove from heat, stir in bourbon
Grease an 8 inch square pan and sprinkle with the almonds
Pour chocolate mixture in to pan and chill in fridge

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Bourbon Baked Beans - Pressure Cooker

1 pound of dry navy beans (soaked overnight)
olive oil
2 small onions, chopped
8 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup BBQ sauce
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup ketchup
2 Tablespoons molasses
1 cup bourbon
1 1/2 tablespoons ground mustard
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons worcestershire sauce
2 cups of water

Put oil in bottom of pot and cook the onion and garlic
Add all the other ingredients
Secure the cover on the pressure cooker, set it to position 2, once it is pressurized cook for an hour over medium heat
If you want saucier beans add more water

Monday, January 21, 2013

Bourbon Pecan Shortbread

In a food processor combine
1/4 cup pecans
1 cup flour
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
Cream together
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup powder sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 Tablespoon bourbon
Add butter mixture to food processor
Press the dough into a greased removable bottom 8 inch cake pan, bake at 325 for 30 minutes
Let cool about 10 minutes, while still warm cut into slices

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Bourbon Cocktails

 To get ready for our bourbon party we decided to test some classic cocktail recipes.

Suffering Bastard 

1 ounce bourbon
1 ounce gin
1 ounce fresh lime juice
1 dash Angostura bitters
4 ounces chilled ginger ale

Pour ingredients into an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass and top with ginger ale

Black Rose 

2 ounces bourbon
Dash grenadine
2 dashes of Peychaud’s bitters

Fill old-fashioned glass 3/4 with ice
Pour ingredients over ice and stir

The Revolver

2 ounces bourbon
1/2 ounce coffee liqueur
2 dashes orange bitters

Combine bourbon, coffee liqueur, and orange bitters in a mixing glass and fill with ice. Stir well until chilled. 
Strain into chilled cocktail glass. 

Rosemary Bourbon Fizz

3 ounces Fresh rosemary-infused bourbon 
              (Infuse for ten minutes.)
2½ tsp. Powdered sugar
Splash of Vanilla soda

Shake to combine bourbon and sugar. 
Serve in a short glass over ice. 
Top with a splash of vanilla soda. 

Bourbon Blossom

1½ ounce bourbon
¼ ounce St. Germain
¼ ounce Fresh lime juice
½ ounce Apple juice

Shake and strain into a cocktail glass. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Drunken Brisket Empenadas

Last week I made a drunken brisket in the pressure cooker. This week I turned the meat into empanadas filling. I'd saved the liquid that the brisket cooked in. I started by putting the liquid in a pot and letting it simmer and reduce. While that was happening I pulled the brisket and chopped it a little then added it to the sauce. 

When I've made empanadas in the past I've used frozen discos but couldn't find them at the grocery store so I tried my hand at making my own dough. I used a recipe from Laylita's Recipes

In a food processor mix
3 cups flour
1 1/2 sticks salted butter
5 Tablespoons water 
Form the dough into a ball and refrigerate for 30 minutes
Roll out the dough and cut into circles 

Put the brisket in the middle of the dough disk, rub water around the edge of the disk, fold dough over the filling and press edges together to close the crescent. The water will help it seal together and can also be used to seal the dough if it cracks because it is too dry. 

Bake at 400 for about 25 minutes. 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Bourbon Sweet Potato Tots

3 sweet potatoes
1/4 cups heavy cream
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
salt & pepper
1/3 cup bourbon
1/4 cup dark brown sugar

Prick sweet potatoes with a fork and bake at 450 for 1 hour, until tender, let them cool about 20 minutes
Peel sweet potatoes and put into a bowl, combine with cream, lemon, salt & pepper and blend
Heat bourbon and brown sugar on the stove let sugar dissolve and add into sweet potato mixture

Put sweet potato mash in the fridge overnight

Sweet potato mash
breadcrumbs or pecans or pretzels 

Form sweet potato mash into balls, roll in breadcrumbs (I used pretzels I put in the food processor because that's what I had on hand), heat oil in a pan on the stove over high, when it's hot add the coated balls to brown them. 
Too many? put them in the fridge or freezer and re-heat in the oven when you're ready to eat them. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Double Date - Dates 2 ways

I've been experimenting with bourbon in my cooking in preparation for a bourbon themed party. Today's experiment was with stuffed dates.

goat cheese
chopped walnuts

Mix all the ingredients together. Slice and pit the dates, stuff them with cheese mixture and bake at 350 for about 20 minutes until they just begin to brown on top.

hot sauce - I used a chipotle hot sauce to give it a smokey flavor

 Slice and pit dates, pour some bourbon on them and let it absorb. Toss almonds in hot sauce. Put almonds in dates - add extra hot sauce if you want it spicy - wrap in bacon. Bake at 350 until bacon is cooked.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Grilled Shrimp

It is unseasonably warm here, almost 60 degrees in January in Boston. This crazy weather may be a sign of the end  of the world but why not take advantage? For this summer like weather I made a summer dinner, salad with shrimp on top.

First step was prepping putting together a marinade for the shrimp

Olive oil
garlic (I used frozen cubes)
cilantro (I used frozen cubes)
lime juice

Then I had to prep the shrimp. Thankfully they were already beheaded. I peeled them leaving the shells around the tail and deveined them, keeping them on ice so they stayed cold. I gave them one final rinse, dried them with paper towels and put them in a ziploc bag with the marinade. I kept them in the fridge for a few hours then put them on the grill. 

Once the shrimp were cooked I put them on on a bed of mixed greens for a taste of summer meal.