Sometimes The Chef and I disagree on the goodness level of certain recipes. There are recipes I love that he thinks are too standard to make as frequently as I request them. Like his Tortilla Soup. Or his Tomato Soup. Or his Mushroom Sauce. So, soups and sauces basically. Look, I know what I like.
Anyway, this is one of those recipes. In the infinite bounty that is The Chef’s current catering gig, he brought home some short ribs the other night that only needed a saucy boost for dinner. He whipped up this simple red wine sauce in 10 minutes, and while he found the whole thing totally boring, I found this sauce freaking delectable.
It’s obviously awesome on meat of any kind – and we fully plan to test it over tenderloin with fried eggs and cheese grits for Sunday brunch – but I’d wager you could even make tofu edible with this stuff. Observe:
half bottle of decent red wine
1 cup beef broth
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp flour
- In a saucepan, reduce red wine by half. Then add beef broth.
- In another pan, make a blonde roux: Melt one tablespoon of butter, add one tablespoon of flour, and stir constantly for about 2 minutes on medium heat.
- Slowly whisk the roux into the sauce. Bring sauce to a boil and then reduce to simmer.
- Season with salt and pepper and drizzle on EVERYTHING.
There’s nothing better at a party than a good meatball. And despite the fact that I have to use an entire Tide-to-go pen anytime I come near them, I will still inhale those suckers like it’s my job.
This is Dunny’s patented recipe, and it’s sure to produce a leftover-free pot. Most meatball recipes I’ve encountered involve BBQ sauce, so I like the Lexington twist of jelly and cocktail here.
You can make these in any pot on the stove, but I love a crock pot because it allows you to munch continuously and you get to use those fun little decorative toothpicks.
And no matter what you do, make sure to get the highest quality balls you can. I know Dunny always does. Heyyyyo!
2 bags frozen meatballs (around 50)
2 8 oz. jars red currant jelly
1 12 oz. jar Heinz cocktail sauce
1 box beef broth
- From Dunny: “Pretty much dump and stir occasionally til heated through.”
Couldn’t have said it better myself.
The first official day of fall has come and gone, and that means it’s legitimately time for soup again! And I no longer have to put up with judgmental looks when I ask what the soup of the day while sitting on a patio in July.
As it is now October, I’ve clearly already made chili (cheese dogs) in celebration of the season, but this week I decided to turn my attention to things more healthy.
This recipe is similar to Mama Dunny’s oft-praised Veggie Beef Soup, and it is certainly not lacking in the ingredient department. Luckily most of these ingredients can be bought already prepped, so you get to stand and stir and taste and season without having to chop ’til your fingers fall off.
And believe it or not, the addition of Zing Zang here is not just a reflection of my inability to wait until Saturday morning to make myself a bloody. It actually adds great flavor and seasoning. Give it a slurp and see what I mean.
2 boxes beef broth
1 beef brisket (2.5 lbs or so), cut into 8 pieces
1 large can tomato sauce
2 cups Zing Zang Bloody Mary Mix
1 package mushrooms, sliced
2 carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 potato, chopped (or parsnip if you’re feeling experimental)
2 cups cabbage, chopped (crunchy goodness)
1 bag frozen peas, carrots, corn, and lima & green beans
1 can diced tomatoes + juice (any non-Rotel variety)
1.5 cups mini farfalle pasta
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
hot sauce & Tony’s & Cavender’s to taste (natch)
- Place brisket in large dutch oven. Cover with beef broth, tomato sauce, and Zing Zang. Add spices.
- Bring to boil and reduce to simmer. Cook on low for at least 3 hours (the longer and lower the better, but you just have to cook it until the brisket starts to pull apart).
- Once the brisket is tender, remove it from the broth and let cool. Pull apart.
- Turn the broth up to a boil and add the veggies. [Start with carrots and potatoes (which will take longer) and work your way down to things that cook quickly like mushrooms. ] Turn down to a simmer.
- Add beef and uncooked pasta. Simmer until pasta is cooked through. Add more broth if necessary.*
- TASTE and SEASON. This is a big ole mess ‘o soup (because why would make any other amount?), and that will require a LOT of seasoning. My measurements are always estimates, so use your own judgment. Nothing is more disappointing than bland broth.
- Serve with Saltines. Because some things Grandma did you cannot argue with.
*Do not be afraid to add more broth (and subsequently more seasoning) as you go along. All these veggies will suck up that moisture, and the broth is so delish that you’ll want more of it.
The Chef made this a few nights ago out of the Beef Broth
he created last week, and it was a clean, brothy version
of the classic. Topping this with some cracked black pepper and french bread that has been toasted with gruyere
or provolone on top will make you feel positively French. But not in the stinky beret-wearing way.
6 sweet yellow onions, thinly sliced
tablespoon of olive oil
4 cups of beef broth
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme
2 tablespoons of brandy
salt and pepper to taste
- Cook onions in olive oil over medium low heat in a large Dutch oven for about one hour. You want the onions to be very caramelized so be patient.
- Once caramelized, add brandy. Cook until brandy evaporates.
- Add broth and thyme. Simmer for 30 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste and top with melted gruyere or provolone cheese and croutons. As usual, this is even better the day after.