The Classic 1/4 Pounder with Cheese

April 1, 2012 § 2 Comments

Nothing inspires more nostalgia for this foodie than a classic quarter-pounder with cheese from McDonald’s, just like the parents used to feed me when I’d throw a tantrum. So this weekend, to celebrate my birthday, I decided to try to recreate that feeling of victory when my parents finally gave in to my flailing and wailing, “I WANT CHEESEBARGER!!!1!!1!one!!1!,” loaded me into the car, and took me to see that glorious clown. I was a fat little shit of a child.

What I found was it’s really not difficult at all to make a quarter pounder with cheese exactly the same way McDonald’s does.

What You’ll Need How Much
Dollars 5
Quarters 2
Dimes 2
Pennies 4
Debit or credit card (optional) 1
Chosen mode of transportation 1
McDonald’s Restaurant 1

What You’ll Do

1) Gather your mise en place. It doesn’t have to be exactly the same dollars and coins, so long as it equals $5.74 (prices may vary). Or, you can simplify the prep by using a credit or debit card.

2) Using your chosen mode of transportation, travel to the nearest McDonald’s restaurant. I prefer a car, because I don’t plan on having kids so there’s no reason for me to care about the planet.

3) Queue up at the counter or in the drive-thru, and when it’s your turn, say, “Give me a number 2, with [insert chosen beverage and whatever modifications to the sandwich you’d like].” Don’t bother to say please.

4) Throw your money at the cashier, because you sincerely believe it’s their fault for how awful you’re going to feel in 30 minutes when your stomach starts trying to make sense of what you’re about to put in it.

5) When your order is ready, take it to the table or if you ordered to go, wherever you’d prefer to eat your fat nostalgia.

6) Settle into your seat, open the cardboard box containing your 1/4 pound grease pellet, and put it in your face. If you eat at the restaurant, be sure to leave all your trash and shit on the table for one of the employees to clean up. You gotta make sure they’re earning that minimum wage.

Happy April Fools, fuckers!

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Bachelor Week: Cheater’s Gumbo

February 27, 2012 § 10 Comments

Last week the wife went on an impromptu road trip with a friend, leaving me at home like a bachelor for 5 days. Without her to cook for I shamelessly regressed in my eating habits, subsisting mostly on various forms of meat, ice cream, and beer while watching almost 50 episodes of Psych. Whaaat?

In this fit of meat sweats and beer belchery, I managed to scrounge up the creativity to throw this dish together using chicken sausage, salsa, and some leftover rice from a stir fry last week. It was fast, simple, and it went down easy with a Red Stripe or 4.

I know I’m going to catch hell from my NOLA pals for calling this gumbo of any sort, but it got the job done. No process shots on this one because it’s so damn easy — just simple, kick ass bachelor food. Suck on this.

What You’ll Need How Much
Your favorite dinner sausage, 1/4-1/2″ slices 1 link (3-4oz.)
baby Portobello mushrooms, quartered 1/2 c
extra virgin olive oil 1 T
leftover rice, cold 1 c
Your favorite salsa 1/2 c
green onions, chopped fine 2 T
Cajun seasoning To taste
Chipotle hotsauce, optional To taste

What You’ll Do

1) Heat olive oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and sausage, and saute for 5-7 minutes, until mushrooms are tender and sausage is cooked.

2) Lower heat to medium. Add rice, salsa, Cajun seasoning, and half the green onions. Stir often until everything is warmed through.

3) Taste it. Spicy enough for you? No? Add more Cajun seasoning and/or hot sauce. Taste it again. Repeat.

4) Dump that goodness on a plate, and get frilly using the rest of the green onions as a garnish. Eat with your eyes.

5) Eat with your face.

Should feed 1 face. To impress your girl or friends, simply multiply recipe by how many faces you’re feeding.

Vegetarians: This recipe is uber-simple to veggify. Just nix the sausage, and add 1/2 c of both chopped red pepper and onion. Or, you could even substitute red beans for a more Cajuny vibe.

A Grilled Cheese for the Stubborn Lactose Intolerant

February 13, 2012 § 11 Comments

Well, I am unfortunately back from vacation, and I have tons of stuff to tell you about how awesome the Pacific Northwest is, but before I do that there are photos to process and notes to sort through and souvenirs to distribute and yadda yadda.

Actually. I didn’t take notes. I was on vacation. But there is shit to do before I can let you in on all the highlights and kick ass places I found to put food in my face. You can count on it, but for now, you’ll just have to settle for this gnarly grilled cheese recipe.

A couple months ago I found out I was lactose intolerant. Evidently, your belly is not meant to be in a near constant state of gurgling and fart-development. I did not know this. But my wife*, after 2 years of dealing with me and my gastric acrobatics, finally said, “That shit’s not right.”

What this means is when I sit down to any sort of meal where dairy is involved, I don’t fuck around. I make it count. If I’m drinking a glass of milk, it better be frothy cold and delicious. If I’m eating a pizza, the pepperoni better be pungent and plenty.

And you bet your ass, if I’m eating a grilled cheese sandwich, I’m not settling for some Kraft singles on Wonder Bread. No. Here is how I do.

*Cute Valentine’s Day themed note since tomorrow is the day: The first time I ever made these grilled cheese sandwiches, it was for the first V-Day Britt and I ever spent together. D’aaaawwwwwww!

Grilled Lactose Sandwich

A sandwich worthy of the lactose bomb.

What You’ll Need How Much
Rustic Italian pane 8 slices, 3/4″ thick
extra virgin olive oil 1/4 c
smoked gouda, shredded 1/2 c
Gruyere, shredded 1/2 c
sharp cheddar, shredded 1/2 c.
Pecorino Romano, shredded 1/4 c
fresh cracked pepper 1 t
dried oregano 1 t
dried thyme 1 t
onion powder 1/2 t
garlic powder 1/2 t

What You’ll Do

1) In a bowl, grate together the gouda, gruyere, cheddar, and Pecorino Romano. Add the pepper, oregano, thyme, onion powder, and garlic powder. Mix evenly.

2) Brush the olive oil on the slices of Italian pane.

3) In a grill pan over medium heat, put a slice of Pane oil-side down, and cover with 1/4 of the cheese mixture.

4) Cap it with another slice, oil-side up. Cook about 5 minutes, until you get good grill marks and cheese begins to melt, and flip. Cook another 5’ish minutes.

5) Remove to cutting board, cut that shit in half, plate it up, and put it in your face.

Should feed 4 faces.

Pro-tip: If you can fit all 4 sandwiches on your grill pan, good for you. I can only fit about 2. Either way, never let a grill cheese sandwich sit for too long flat on its side. The steam condensed between the sandwich and your plate will turn that side into a soggy, soft piece of shit. Cut the sandwich in half and stand it up in a tepee or something. Get creative. Just please, for the love of all things holy, don’t let the sandwich soggify.

What a Crock (Chicken) Pot Pie

January 29, 2012 § 2 Comments

My wife, God bless her, has somehow managed to stay sane over the past 2+ years of our marriage. She deals with my jackassery and poety-moodswings and even rewards me sometimes by cooking me something awesome, like this chicken crock pot pie she made a few weeks ago.

* * *

What a Crock (Chicken) Pot Pie

By: Brittany “The Wife” Newgent

I brought in the mail last week and was excited our magazines had come. Christopher could soon tell me about particles being teleported even farther and dream of ways we could develop human teleportation and put airlines completely out of business. I could soon teach him how to make five pieces of clothing in to twenty different outfits, which would of course mean I needed to go buy five new pieces of clothing.

I handed Christopher Popular Science. He spent maybe five minutes skimming the contents before he picked up Real Simple and proceeded to read every recipe it contained (with a kid in a candy shop smile). I started a grocery list as he was drooling over images of food like they were centerfolds. When I asked what to add to the list he said the following:

What You’ll Need How Much
crimini mushrooms, quartered 8 oz
carrots, cut into 1″ pieces 4
medium onion, chopped 1
flour 1/2 c
fresh thyme 2 sprigs
bay leaf 1 leaf
boneless, skinless chicken breasts 1 1/2 lbs.
salt & fresh cracked pepper to taste
puff pastry or biscuits 1 sheet or tube
frozen peas 1 c
fresh green beans 1 c
water 1/2 c
heavy cream 1/2 c

When he informed me it was a crock pot meal I was eager to try it, as we have 2 crock pots and have used each once since we’ve had the same last name.

Quick tips
1. If you want to throw this in a pot before you leave your home, prep everything the night before, or be prepared to be about 30 minutes late to wherever you’re going.

2. If you are awesome and love the taste of fresh, crisp green beans, use fresh rather than frozen. However, the green beans go in the pot for a short amount of time toward the end of the process along with the peas and cream. I chose to cut fresh green beans into 1-inch pieces and put them in the freezer while the rest of the ingredients cooked.

3. Add your favorite herbs and spices (such as rosemary and garlic) to give this dish a bit more of a kick. (Ed. note: we did think the recipe as prepared to Real Simple standards was a bit bland, and suggest giving this dish a rightful kick to the face with a spice boot.)

What You’ll Do
1. In a 4-6 quart slow cooker, mix together the mushrooms, carrots, onion, flour, thyme, bay leaf, and 1/2 cup water. Place the chicken boobs on top and season with salt and pepper.

2. Cover and cook until the vegetables look like a delicious mush and the chicken easily breaks apart. I set the cooker on low for about 7 hours. If you can’t wait all day, set it on high and cook for about 4 hours.

3. About 30 minutes before you plan to put this in your face, begin to make the biscuits or pastries.

4. Once the chicken is tender (about 10 minutes before you put this in your face) break the chicken into small pieces with a fork. Add the peas, green beans, and cream, and mix it well. Add more salt and pepper if desired. Cover and let cook for about 10 minutes.

5. Place the chicken and mush in/on your favorite dish (it deserves at least that) along with as many biscuits as you damn well please.

6. Put it in your face!

Chicken Enchis!

December 28, 2011 § Leave a comment

My pal Carrie Murphy writes a food blog called Plums In the Icebox. I recently made a version of her chicken enchiladas and told her I’d post about them on my personal blog, and then thought, “Well, fuck it all, how about a new blog?! A.. FOOD BLOG!”

Because there aren’t enough of those, right?

Right.

So here. I’m going to tell you about what I’m putting in my face, and suggesting that you put it in yours, too. Okay? Okay. Go.

First up?

Chicken & Spinach Enchiladas

Put These Enchis In Your Face

What You’ll Need How Much
corn tortillas 10
baby spinach 2-3 c
yellow onion, diced 1/2 c
boneless, skinless chicken breasts 2
cajun seasoning to taste
shredded cheese (Mexican blend, duh, but really, whatever you want) 1 c
olive oil to coat
hot sauce of your choice, optional to taste
dried thyme 1 t
vine-ripe tomatoes 5
garlic, minced 1 T
cumin 1 T
paprika 1 T
chili powder 2 t

What You’ll Do

1) A half-hour before roasting, remove chicken breasts from your refrigerator and put in well-oiled roasting dish. Season with cajun seasoning, to taste obviously, but seriously though, don’t be a pussy about it.

Oiled Breasts

2) Make the enchilada sauce: Basically, get yourself a good blender or food processor, and put all that shit from the ingredients list under “For enchilada sauce” into it at the same time, and go until it’s all pureed to Hell.

It should look something like this.

3) Preheat the oven to 425F.

4) Roast chicken breasts for approx 15 minutes depending on thickness, or until the internal temperature is 155F (USDA says 165F, I know, but they just don’t want to get sued, so they tell you to overcook everything). Remove and let stand for 5-10 minutes, then shred that shit up. I probably should’ve taken a picture of this for reference, but you’ve probably eaten at a Mexican joint before, and know what shredded chicken looks like. Make it look like that.

5) Reduce the heat of the oven to 350F.

6) In a saute pan over medium-low heat, heat a tablespoon of olive oil, and add onions. Saute for 3-5 minutes, or until onions start to become translucent, then add spinach. Saute another 2-3 minutes until spinach wilts just slightly.

7) Microwave the corn tortillas for 20-30 seconds so they’re easy to work with.

8) In a 9″x13″ baking dish, pour about 1/4c of enchilada sauce into the bottom.

9) Put a line of the spinach/onion mixture and shredded chicken down the center of a corn tortilla. (Again, probably should’ve taken a photo, but you know how much chicken and veggies you have, and you know how many corn tortillas you gotta fill, so make it last.) Wrap it up, and place it seam side down into the enchilada sauce. Repeat this for the remaining tortillas.

10) Pour the rest of the enchilada sauce over the top of the enchis. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over this goodness. Bake in oven for 10-15 minutes, or until cheese has completely melted. They should look like that picture way up there.

11) Put a couple enchis on a plate. If you want, add some hot sauce for some kick. The enchiladas themselves don’t actually have a lot of kick to them, because my wife isn’t so into being kicked. So I dumped some chipotle hot sauce on mine because I dig the smoke.

12) Finally. Put it in your face!

Should feed 3-4 faces.

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