Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Bobby Flay's Grilled Beef Braciole - A Must MAKE!

I do my best to make things pretty,especially food. Sometimes, I hit a bump in the road. For example, this grilled braciole recipe. By far and away, it is one of the best meals I have ever made. Did it look like the picture on Bobby Flay's website? Um, that would be a huge NO. It didn't matter though, because it was sinfully delicious. I wish I had known this recipe existed back in my low carb dieting days because it seems to fill the bill perfectly.  I happen to know where I went wrong and why my braciole looked like the two pieces of Princess Leia's cinnamon roll hairdo..or a cannoli, as opposed to...well...braciole. I was nervous to use the butcher's twine on the grill, so I used my 'chicken nails' to keep the braciole in place. The steak was specifically for braciole, but may be could have used a bit more thinning out. In any case, this recipe is awesome.  It's paired with grilled tomato relish, which is amazing and healthy. Also, if you have any experiences, good or bad, with using butcher's twine on a grill, leave me a post. On another note, Real Housewives of New Jersey's Teresa Giudice released her cookbook, Skinny Italian, this month. I can't wait to get my hands on a copy! Check out her website for reviews and information.
Bobby Flay's Grilled Beef Braciole with Grilled Tomato Relish from
8 plum tomatoes
5 tablespoons olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 small red onion, finely diced
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley leaves

For the beef:
1 (2-pound) round steak, pounded to 1/4-inch thickness
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated pecorino Romano cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh oregano leaves
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup of olive oil

3 (8-inch) pieces butcher's twine, soaked in cold water

Fresh basil sprigs, for garnish

For the grilled tomato-basil relish:
Heat the grill to high.Cut the tomatoes half, then brush with 2 tablespoons of the oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the tomatoes on all sides until slightly charred and soft. Remove the tomatoes from the grill, chop and place in a bowl. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil, onion, vinegar, basil and parsley and season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

For the beef:
Heat the grill to high.Place the steak on a flat surface. Combine the cheese, parsley, oregano and garlic in a small bowl. Brush the steak on the side facing up with 2 tablespoons of the oil and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the cheese mixture evenly over the steak, leaving a 1/2-inch border around the sides. Starting with the long end, tightly roll the meat up like a jelly roll and tightly tie with the butcher's twine on the ends and in the center. Brush the entire outside of the steak with the oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on the grill, seam-side up and grill until golden brown on all sides, about 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the grill and let rest 10 minutes before slicing into 1/2-inch thick slices. Serve several slices per person topped with some of the relish.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Some Like It Hot...Some Don't - 3 Days of Food Network Recipes

Last week, I was on a Food Network kick. Nothing fuels my passion for cooking more than watching an episode of Giada or Paula, or perusing the network's website for the top rated recipes. I tried to mix it up a little, choosing one shrimp dish, one beef dish and one chicken dish to prepare for the week. Since I made R.R's Spit Fire Shrimp first, I will start with that recipe. I made it last Monday, which was a day completely filled with chaos. I spent the morning running errands, bringing my son back and forth to pre-school, peeling my daughter off of chairs and chandeliers and tending to mountains of laundry. In short, my attention span was very limited.
I completely rushed to get dinner on the table. It took some time because I was intermittently cooking and prying my kids apart as they fought over Thomas the Train.
My kitchen smelled divine and the shrimp looked mouth watering. My husband can not wait for anyone else to start eating, so he dove in immediately. I noticed he wasn't commenting, just chewing slowly and thoughtfully. Then I noticed something funny. My husband is normally pasty white. I watched as his neck turned crimson and the heat moved up to his cheeks, then his forehead. Sweat dripped from his brow. He took a giant gulp of orange soda and said, "Wow! Spicy!" Now, I knew it would have a kick, I just didn't know how much of a kick. I took a bite. My eyes teared. My nose started to run. I breathed fire and nearly singed the dog's tail. In my case, I loved it. It is the kind of spicy I truly appreciate. As we finished dinner, I had a a moment of clarity. I had forgotten that I only made a half batch of shrimp for the recipe, so the sauce was a double dose of fire breathing hotness. OOPS! Up next: Bobby Flay's Grilled Bracciole

Rachael Ray's Spitfire Shrimp from
1 lime, juiced

2 ounces (1/4 cup) hot cayenne pepper sauce
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon crab boil seasoning
4 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped

2 shallots, chopped
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
2 pounds jumbo shrimp peeled and de-veined* (I used frozen)
12 to 15 blades fresh chives, chopped, for garnish
Preheat large nonstick skillet over medium high heat.

Combine lime juice, hot sauce, cumin, red pepper flakes and seafood seasoning blend.
Quickly saute garlic and shallots in oil and butter for 1 minute, add shrimp and cook 3 minutes, tossing and turning frequently. Dump pink, firm, cooked shrimp from hot pan into hot seasoning blend and toss in seasoning mixture to coat shrimp evenly. Garnish with chopped chives. Serve warm or chilled.