Back to Cooking

Seriously, I can’t quite remember the last time I cooked a full meal (except for dessert). I think it was close to a month ago. And I know you moms are freaking out about that. But not to worry, the grass isn’t usually greener on the others side and all that.  When you have two singles living in the house who work full time, and then the schedule had my sister out of town one weekend and then both of us another weekend, and another weekend we were involved with workings of a funeral, we just didn’t get too much cooking done.

I know I’ve had lots of sandwiches the last while and simple things like cracker soup. Does anyone besides my family know what that is?

Tonight there was thawed sirloin steaks so I decided to make a real meal for a change. We don’t often buy steak and roasts but my parents had 2 steers butchered this summer and we were able to get meat for a very good price. But since I don’t cook sirloins very often and just enough to know they can be chewy, I googled some recipe suggestions and a simmered version sounded good. The only thing was, it called for meat, onions, canned mushrooms and water. No seasonings mentioned but that’s not a problem. I thought some greens would be a nice addition so I bought a bag of turnip greens washed, chopped and ready to cook. Cheater.

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I also bought boneless ham hock to add to it for flavoring.

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Here it is before I started cooking it.

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Meanwhile I trimmed the fat off the sirloin and started pan frying it in a little olive oil. I sprinkled them liberally with season salt and Morton’s seasoning blend, Nature’s Seasoning.

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After I flipped them, I threw in sliced onion. We love onion so the more the deliciouser.

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Added more Nature’s Seasoning and then added 3 or so cups of water and about 1/2 red cooking wine. [Edited to add: that’s supposed to be 1/2 c. red cooking wine, lest anyone is sure that my problem below was from the bottle.  ]

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I covered this and let it simmer for about 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the stove the greens had greatly shrunk, as they are wont to do.

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We interrupt this cooking post to bring you a commercial.

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The jar that preserves your sanity by preserving your preserves.
(I would never make it very far in marketing.)

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These jars got filled too full with applesauce last fall and instead of the jars cracking, the tops just popped off, rings and all. The lid was so bowed it hardly stayed in the ring. I’m assuming, though, that the applesauce was slow enough in freezing that it didn’t give the jars any concern.

Meanwhile, back on the stove, I added the mushrooms to the steak and onions to simmer a while. We like mushrooms as much as we like onions. Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve typed “garlic” for a very long time on this site. Probably months. Not that we haven’t used any. I think I’ve canned over 50 pints of dill pickles and pickled okra this year. I am finished for this year. I gave some of the okra away as birthday gifts. So glad my friends don’t think I’m strange.

Anyway, about the mushrooms, we don’t buy the fresh ones very often but it is nice to use them while they are still very fresh and white.

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I kind of only like the small white ones the best. Looking at portabellas kind of gives me the heebie jeebies, whatever they are.

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After simmering for about 15 minutes without the lid, there was nice rich au jus so I dipped the meat and veggies out and started making a little gravy. It was lumpier than wanted it so I poured it into a jar to blenderize it and just as I was lifting the heavy iron skillet over the jar, I bumped it and it went crashing to the floor.

No, I’m serious. I bet you didn’t see that coming!! I didn’t either, neither did my skirt or shirt, or kitchen cabinets for that matter.

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Talk about a perfect mess!!! Sticky and there went my delicious au jus!

After I cleaned it up I had to make a roux with flour and oil and then added cream and milk. I didn’t even have beef broth or bouillon to add to it.

And mostly all’s well that ends well. It was good, just had a different flavor than I was hoping and my floor had some extras cleaned up from it.

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And it still needed more salt. Mercy how one can add salt to things. And we’re not even salt freaks. We probably make it less salty than a lot of people.

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Imagine a glass of freshly brewed iced tea to go with it.


18 thoughts on “Back to Cooking

  1. That looks delicious!! I haven’t had breakfast and I want that for breakfast. Can you come over? My floor needs mopped too so you can spill it one time. A delectable post.

  2. I love you. I love you.  I love you.  I LOVE YOU!  Do you know you have just given me another Liam recipe (with a few very tiny alterations) and it looks SCRUMPTIOUS!!!  Just yesterday I was depressed all over again at how b.o.r.i.n.g kitchen work has become.  I cannot wait to try this!!!!  My whole family sends hugs.  Did you simmer the meat on the stove the whole time or do it in the crockpot?  Was it tender?

  3. @Jabber_wock – You and me both!!!

    @smilesbymiles – Glad to be of service, ma’am! I did simmer it only on the stove and it was soft. You could crock pot it and it would be even softer. Also, if you cut it up into small pieces it would cook really fast. I simmered it for at 45min – 1 hour and the smallest pieces were fork soft.

  4. I love your cooking posts.  And the commercial break…I laughed aloud and I’m sitting at McDonalds. πŸ˜€   One of my friends introduced me to pickled okra last year, and I really like it.  The boys both love it, and Zachary will devour half a jar at a time!

  5. Cracker soup? It’s mama’s comfort food. The mooshier the crackers, the better. *shudders*. And i love your commercial. when’s the next show?

    p.s. Mooshy is the more soggy form of mushy, in case it didn’t make sense. Oh, I just looked it up and it actually is a word! Means: like mush; squishy.

  6. Cracker Soup? Yep, Robin’s favorite comfort food, too!  Me, on the other hand–can’t stand the stuff!  And ever since I saw this post I’ve been hungry for it, so I’ll be pulling sirloin steaks out of the freezer for tonight!  We bought a half a cow from LaVern’s and our freezer is FULL of beef!

  7. you are too funny! love the commercial. and the “deliciouser” word. ha ha! πŸ™‚

    your food always looks sooooooo good. that white sauce looks so amazing i can almost taste it. thanks for a yummy supper inspiration that i will try!

    and cracker soup. hmmm, sounds, well, *interesting* shall we say? is that similar to banana soup, by chance? somehow i think your beef sounds a bit tastier.

  8. It’s in the crockpot! πŸ™‚  Oh, and I was going to tell you that the saltiness may have disappeared from the long cooking time.  Somewhere I read not to add salt until things are almost done if they cook a long time b/c it loses it’s flavor during the cooking time, but the sodium level doesn’t decrease.  I don’t know if this would have been long enough to do that or not.

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