A La Porte

Served tonight on my camping gear was a portobello explosion. I managed to do it all on my pint sized pots designed for compactness, and not for extravagances like I think my cooking is!

To begin the ordeal, rice goes into pot to bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 min (yes I have white jasmine rice) with equal amounts of water to rice, rinse the rice a few times before to get rid of some of the shells etc.

I can’t help taking a few seconds to contemplate the logic of wasting water to rinse rice….. hmm… Is this the fight I should start?

Wash the vegetables chosen for this gourmet delight, which are portobello mushrooms, green pepper, tomato, onion, and garlic.

Portos are sliced into equal slices, tomatoes are diced into chunks, onions are chopped into small bits, as is the garlic and green peppers.

Put the portos into the frying pan, with some butter for extra taste, I used extra virgin olive oil and put the heat on medium. Add the onions and garlic shortly after, or even at the same time.

I used some ground ginger, coriander, and poppy seeds, which I add now.

After this has fried for a short while add the green peppers to give them a little softening and finally the tomatoes at the very end to warm them up a little. I like my tomatoes to stay fresh still in my dishes.

As the frying finalizes, it should be timed perfect with the rice, and both should come to fruition at nearly the same time.

Love to hear how this turns out for you, and remember to eat with chop sticks!

Bennigans Dinner, Miami

Tonight I went for dinner at a place called Bennigans, thats right next to the Miami International Airport, conveniently located right next to the hotel I’m staying at tonight. To be to the point, I was very disappointed.

First off, on the menu, they have a picture of a full pint, with big arrows pointing at how regular pints fill up to ‘this’ certain line, but theirs fill up to ‘this’ certain line. We received a pint that was about the size of a glass you usually get in a hotel room in a plastic wrapper. Very unimpressed. The folks took a lot of offence to this, egged on by me, they complained, and we eventually got a 1/3 or so of the mug filled up to make up for the lacking pint. Sure, this is alright, but seriously now. If your a manager of a restaurant, and somebody complains about their pint being pint sized, and you know that the flyers are lying, not to mention that you’ve watered down the pints, do you not give them a full, complimentary pint? I would. But then again, its a restaurant thats besides the airport, which means very few returning customers, and the staff seemed about the ‘just graduated’ age. So, I guess things are becoming more clear.

We sit around, me finally with my bottled bear (a buddy of mine once said: “I always get bottles of beers because each one is especially brewed for you”. I now see his point.

Dinner is served. Let me first say that it was tasty, yes. How can a beef dinner not be tasty smothered in gravy? yai. SO I will not fuss further about the meal. No, wait, I will.

My meal was beef soup or something like that, which was basically chuncks of beef mixed with some red potatoes. Yum. yes, yum. But the side they gave me, was mashed potatoes. Red Potatoes. Kinda odd no? I did, as it said on the menu, have a choice between about 8 other sides (substitute the mashed red potatoes for them) but, I did in fact receive a caesar salad to start with too. So, it wasn’t anything I couldn’t deal with. But really, its odd to be smothering your potato chunks with mashed potatoes…. If you ask me.

So the fellow that was serving us did have some fast service, and he humbly and care-ingly accepted the complaints we put forth. But, at the end of the day, what is a tip for? Service, enjoyment, the whole experience? Yes I think so. So, at a place like this, where we were very unpleased with a few things, but satisfied with a few other things, how do you decide?

We found out, that a gratuity was already automatically added onto the bill for us, at 15% so we didn’t have to debate how much to tip. I didn’t like this part of the whole deal. Tipping is for service thats already known to be very good, at a place thats very classy and only really rich people go there. This place was more like a run down Red Robins, or a Chucke Cheeses. I was very unimpressed with this little fact that was added on the bill. Automatic gratuity. We should have definitely raised a lot more stink there than we ended up raising, but let it be known from here on forth, I, or we, will never again visit a Bennigans.

The end.

Chicken and Sausage Stir Fry

Tonight I was procrastinating making dinner, so I waited, and waited, and waited, and snacked, and waited, and waited. But! Finally, I decided to go to the grocery store, get some local produce, and make a stir fry, and boy did it turn out good!

  1. To start off, I chopped my chicken and sausage into bite sized chunks, and put them into the pan to start frying with a little extra virgin olive oil.
  2. Next I added a bunch of spices, my favorites are sesame seeds, tarragon, hot curry powder, chilies (stuff like they have at boston pizza in the shakers)
  3. Started the frying pan with sliced onions and garlic with some more extra virgin olive oil
  4. Started my rice, which is white basmati which I match the rice to water ratio(1/3 cup), plus a little more water and bring that to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes
  5. while this is going on, I chopped some : 1/2 green pepper, 1 carrot, 2 large mushrooms, 1 tomato, and 2/3 cup of brocolli into little bits
  6. after frying the meat, and its looking almost done, no more red parts, I add all the vegetables and put a top onto the dish to let it kind of steam.
  7. after steaming for a few minutes, I put in the onions and garlic that were frying (they should be brownish by now)
  8. let this simmer for a little, and voila! presto! yum. full belly.

I serve it on top of the rice and a glass of red fits the bill!

For some more great ideas check out this health website

Hope you enjoy, let me know if you’ve tried it!

Homemade Gravy

Well, tonight I had some of my left over Roast Beef from last night, which was delicious then, and just as delicious tonight. But, I decided tonight, I needed to add some liquid or extra sauce to it, just to make it off the hook.

To start off, i boiled about a half cup of water. I also took about a half a cup of hot tap water, and put it into a cup with a cap for shaking along with two heaping teaspoons of regular flour. I shook this, in order to mix the flour in with the water (no clumps) and when the pot of water boiled, I poured the mix in. I then added about 1/4 cup of coconut milk, stirring it all together.

Once this was all in, I turned the heat down, so the mixture just barely simmered, and started adding my spices, which all were about 1/2 a teaspoon each:

  • salt
  • pepper
  • cumin
  • garlic powder
  • oregano
  • tumeric
  • savory
  • coriander

Once those were in, I added 1 chopped into little pieces mushroom, and 1 ring of an onion.

I kept this simmering for 10 minutes or so, stirring the whole time as I steamed my veges and the result was amazing!

I wish I had a picture, but good luck!