My girl Tab and I have been friends for well over a decade now. We’ve lived together. We’ve laughed together. We’ve cried together. We’ve been fun-loving party girls together. With all that there is a certain level of comfort and ease. We flow smoothly. So when we come home from a trip to get a Buddha head and she starts to make dinner, we slip back into our routine. I take-over making dinner, while she gets shit done. I enjoy cooking for people. I don’t know why and I don’t want to define it, but I have always loved being in the kitchen, creating for others. So when we got home, I wanted to fix dinner for my friend. And I rocked it out of the park (she will agree in case it seems like I’m bragging).
Paulin Stuffed Peppers
- 6 bell peppers (an assorted variety of color is always nice)
- 1/2 lbs. ground beef (grass-fed is my personal favorite if I can)
- 1/4 lbs. bacon
- 1/2 red onion, diced
- 2 tsp garlic
- 1 can stewed tomatoes (we had one we needed to use up)
- 1/2 cup salsa
- seasoning: garlic powder, sea salt, cayenne pepper
- Olive oil and sea salt
- cheese to sprinkle (optional)
Continue reading “Stuffed Peppers Paulin Style”
Better late than never? My posting has been sporadic at best lately, and the truth is my eating has been kind of boring. Or frankly I haven’t set aside time for kitchen experiments. This little gem is actually a recipe from my father.
I’m reading Michael Pollan’s book Cooked at the moment. Though, I am just at the beginning, his words about cooking, the tradition and how a modern lack of cooking effects us, has my head spinning and my wheels churning. I LOVE TO COOK. In fact I spend most of my time cooking for other people. But then if you look at my history this makes complete sense. My grandmothers are great bakers and cooks. My dad! Man my dad can cook his ass off. I was raised in the country next to my cousins and grandparents. Our intimate family sat down to home cooked meals. Sunday’s we had extended family dinner at my grandparents’ after church. So when my dad suggested we start having our family Christmas the Sunday before and that we sit down for a meal first, my heart melts. Because, although I may come across as nontraditional or eccentric, at my core, I live for family traditions. When he suggested next year that we have pigs on New Years Day, I am instantly transported back to New Years Day’s at my grandpa and grandma Paulin’s when the WHOLE crew would stay. We’d have pigs, sled or attempt to ice skate if the lake was frozen, play euchre (hello we’re Hoosiers), harass one another and just have a plain old good time. Food/traditions hold memories or moments. There’s nostalgia. To think of these moments, now, just writing this, fills me with joy. And that is why I care about family traditions. That is part of the reason I cook.
This year my dad has brought this bomb Turkey Bacon Amazingness to Thanksgiving and Christmas. And now I share it with you (and it’s pretty easy, hence the short instructions).
Turkey Bacon Amazingness
- Turkey breast
- 10 strips of bacon (or whatever covers the top of your turkey)
- Salt and pepper
To Make: Begin by de-boning your turkey. Yep, take all the bones out. Lay it out on your baking sheet as flat as possible, skin-side down. Now season with salt and pepper. Lay and layer strips of bacon on top. Bake at 350 for about an hour or until the bacon is crisp. Cut into hunks, or we found the best serving was to cube and tooth pick. Enjoy!
A few weeks ago I shared a lovely little story about hunting with my men and how eating food that you have a connection and experience with, seems to just taste and feel better going down. Well today I have some more of that beautiful venison to share with you.
Many hunters go through stages. Eventually you get to this level (insert my brother), where you hunt for the trophy buck. Whereas, at my level and humble beginnings, I am merely trying to kill an animal and sustain dinner for the night. The thing about hunting older, bigger bucks is they may not yield as tender of meat as their younger, smaller counterparts. The lovely 10-pointer Cliff got on Thanksgiving was gorgeous, but slightly tougher eating than any other deer we got this season.
I am saying all this, because I have found with this particular deer, I enjoy cutting it up into little cubes and tossing it in the skillet. Plus, I also have it planned out in my head (and meat unthawing in the sink) that I’m going to make some of it into deer burgers. Since I happened to have a rutabaga on hand, I opted for pairing it with my venison tonight, for an impromptu, yet very tasty meal.
Cubed Venison with Shaved Rutabaga Continue reading “Shaved Rutabaga with Venison”
I confess I am a total weirdo when it comes to food and eating habits. I often end up eating by myself. Part of this is self-induced, part of it is circumstantial. I spend most of my time cooking for other people nowadays, that by the time I get home, I typically end up eating a quick one-skillet meal. Also, add in that I have a peculiar taste in food. I admit sometimes I stretch the limits on what is conventional and most of my recipes are experiments. No one is really adamant on joining me for dinner when I am playing around with liver dishes. Add to the solo eating, the fact that I rarely eat out. Cooking is an area where I still grasp at control (in most aspects of my life I have the laid back, let it go, hippy vibe going on). I like to cook my own food. I like to do my own shopping. I like to know where my food is coming from and what’s going in to my meal. Lastly I think one of the biggest factors comes from my parents health business. I got such a complex about my body and eating. I felt under a microscope when I ate, and so I just started eating by myself, a contrast to growing up, when we sat down to family dinners.
This holiday season (actually I started contemplating this before then) has me thinking about the social aspect of eating. I guess the historical/cultural junkie in me thinks of societies like France and Italy, where eating is an experience. An experience you enjoy with others. Where you sit, socialize and eat. Not where you shovel portions down your throat, while you sit texting, posting, tweeting and instagramming on your phones the entire time. You actually engage with the people sitting around you. You take your time. You enjoy the experience. You enjoy the food. You enjoy the company. Continue reading “Girls Night Pizza”
I have been raised by a family of storytellers. I come from a line of hunters and fishermen. I think storytelling comes with the territory. With every hunt or catch there is always a tale (often an elaborate, embellished tale).
In most situations I would consider myself a very non-traditional, eclectic individual. When it comes to family, however, I am all about tradition, and creating new traditions. Thanksgiving has always been a morning for hunting in our family. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been woken up to drag deer out of the woods (happy holiday to me, and sometimes happy birthday as well). But this year I discovered that if ever you need to be Continue reading “Venison Stir Fry”
It is the littlest things in life that excite me. Seriously I am the easiest person to please. Today Jan came in with a ‘present’ for me. I turned around to find a butternut squash with a little face drawn on. I was literally giddy (see I told you it doesn’t take much). So many ideas crashing through my head. Later as we were chattering on in our foodie speak, I was thinking of the cauliflower pizza crust I was getting ready to make for my co-worker Julie. Hmm….what if instead I used butternut? Why not? I do not routine. I am constantly changing things. If something gets comfortable, I’m ready to try something new. I am always down for better. I have done cauliflower pizza crusts so many times, that frankly I’m over them. They’re cliche and trendy. I have this phobia of going with the crowd. So if something catches on, I’m ready to move on to bigger and better pastures. Plus its Fall and butternut (as I’ve exclaimed for weeks now) is my favorite fall flavor. I am branching out.
And here are the results of said experimentation’s. I have to say personally I was so pumped about this crust and pizza when I made it. There is something about conceptualizing something and then having it come to life. It’s the high that the creative process brings. The proudness that fills you up from making something with your own hands. It’s like having a dream come true.
Feel free to play with toppings, I was playing on some savory/sweet combinations. Continue reading “Butternut Pizza Crusts”
Stuff I would love to eat. That’s it. It’s Friday. Enjoy and have a great weekend!
• Steak, thinly sliced
• Cabbage, shredded into long strips
• Carrots, shredded into long strips
• Celery, shredded into long strips
• Grass-Fed Butter
Let’s Make it Happen: Thinly slice meat. Shred the vegetables, this will make it easy to eat with chopsticks. Heat butter in a skillet on medium heat. Toss in the vegetables and toss. Lastly toss in the meat. Salt to taste. Serve, it is actually that easy and it was unbelievably good, can’t you just see the flavor oozing from this picture?