Monday, October 8, 2012

Best Steak Marinade

This is the best steak marinade in the world. No really it is. At least my wife thinks so. So simple and easy to make also. Here is the recipe:

Best Steak Marinade

  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • juice of 1 large lemon
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 3 tablespoons dried basil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
And there it is. All you've got to do is mix it all together and put your steak in it. I always marinade my skirt steak in this marinade overnight and it turns out so juicy and flavorful. The best way to cook your steak is over high heat on a grill until it is rare or medium rare. If you go higher than that temp on purpose...shame on you! Unless it's for a baby!  

Chicken Pot Pie

Chicken Pot Pie

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cubed
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup frozen green peas
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
1 3/4 cups chicken broth
2/3 cup milk

2 (9 inch) unbaked pie crusts
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C.)
  • In a saucepan, combine chicken, carrots, peas, and celery. Add water to cover and boil for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and set aside.
  • In the saucepan over medium heat, cook onions in butter until soft and translucent. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick. Remove from heat and set aside.
  • Place the chicken mixture in bottom pie crust. Pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in the top to allow steam to escape.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Italian Wines in Umbria

Every been to Italy? Yes, there is Rome, and Milan and the other famous places. But if you really want to live like the Italians do, go wine tasting in Italy. One of our favorite places is Umbria. Umbria is a combination of pastoral countryside and mountain wilderness. Nurtured by the Tiber and its tributaries and Italy’s fourth largest lake, Lago Trasimeno, the region is known as the “green heart of Italy” and produces fine olive oil, truffles, grains, tobacco, and livestock, along with its wonderful Italian wines. But Umbria also has a cluster of ancient cities, which offers glimpses into the past. The Umbri, Etruscans, and Romans all left their marks here. Magnificent Orvieto is perched on a plateau and looks down on vineyards below. Its grand Duomo is among the greatest of Italy’s Romanesque/Gothic cathedrals. Perugia’s ancient center embraces a 15th Century duomo, and the city’s most extravagantly decorated church, founded in the 10th Century and rebuilt in the 15th, stands beyond the old walls. Medieval Assisi with its beautiful views and piazzas is the home of St. Francis, who is buried in a basilica frescoed by Giotto among others. And the nearby hill towns of Todi, Spello, Gubbio, and Montefalco blend medieval monuments with Roman remains. Spoleto, surrounded by woods, is the loveliest of the hill towns and hosts one of Europe’s leading art festivals in June and July each year.

Noted mainly for its white wines, such as Orvieto, Procanico, Malvasia, Grechetto, and Trebbiano, the region also produces two noble red wines with special DOCG status, Torgiano Rosso, which is called Rubesco, and Sagrantino, both unmistakably grand wines, capable of aging for decades. The sweet white Vin Santo is a local favorite and is made from semidried Grechetto or Malvasia grapes.

Among the many outside varieties planted in Umbria, Merlot and Barbera have been prominent for more than a century. More recently, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Nero have produced some fine wines.

Up until the late 1980s, nearly half of Umbria’s vineyards were mixed agriculture, the vines often trained onto trees or grown alongside other crops. But today, most vineyards are monoculture, using vertical systems on wires strung between poles.