For my Community TV show at Shaw East Kooteny, they wanted me to do dishes for Valentines Day in December so they could be ready to show in January. So my clock was messed up but being married to She Who Must Be Obeyed means I always feel lucky in romance. The first dish that came to mind was Scallop Fettuccine Alfredo because the woman I love likes scallops and a creamy pasta dish is sensual and sexy. How can you tell I love food? Continue reading Scallop Fettuccine Alfredo
I had a special occasion for a couple of friends. They like ABTs (Atomic Buffalo Treats or words to that effect) but you have to kick it up a bit for special occasions so I put more cheese in them! Continue reading Three Cheese ABTs
I really liked smoke cheese but there are two problems with it. First, it is expensive to buy. Second, if you are going to make it yourself, it helps if it is cold outside.
I made several batches last winter but not enough. By the time it got cold here in the Canadian Rockies, I was totally out!
So, when the temperatures dropped last week, I bought some old cheddar, havarti and extra old marble cheddar. Home smoking works better with cheese that is at least somewhat firm.
You want to expose the cheese to smoke but the temperature has to be cool enough to not melt the cheese. Generally, you have to keep the temperature in the smoking chamber below 70 F. This means you want the temperature to be well below 70 F because most methods of generating smoke create some heat. I have smoked with warm outside temperatures but I have put blocks of ice in the smoking chamber to keep the temperature down.
The next thing you want to do is choose a smoking chamber. Some electric smokers like the Bradley Smoker allow you to burn wood pucks without turning the heating element on. Alternatively, you can use your gas barbecue or any closed container that allows a decent airflow. You want the smoke moving around the cheese.
If your smoking chamber does not have a method of generating smoke, you will need a smoke generator like the A-Maze-N Tube Smoker or Pellet Smoker. These allow hardwood pellets to slowly smolder and generate smoke with minimal heat production.
I used my Louisiana Grills smoker as my smoking chamber. I didn’t turn it on, I just used is as a chamber. I filled my A-Maze-N Tube Smoker with Oak Whiskey Barrel pellets. You can use any pellet you like but most people prefer milder smokes like apple or cherry.
I lit the tube smoker and put it in the chamber with the cheese. I let it smoke for 3 hours. I brought the cheese in and sealed it in vaccum bags.
You need to know that the cheese will taste like an ashtray immediately after smoking. All the smoke is on the surface and it takes time to spread through the cheese and that helps the smoke flavour mellow. You need to let it sit in the fridge for at least two weeks, eight is better.
After a couple of weeks I opened one of the packages and had a nice cracker and cheese snack.
This is one of my favourite snacks. Cheese has that nice sharp flavour that seems to blend with smoke. I will make sure to make more this year!
The Old Fat Guy
A Homage to Pork!
OK, I admit it. I love pork. I like all kinds of pork. I decided it was time to do a dish that reflected my love of pork in all its forms. Welcome to Quatre Cochons de Montagne (Four Mountain Pigs). Of course, one of the best ways to cook pork is in the smoker, so the Louisiana Grills Pellet Smoker was the chosen tool. Continue reading Quatre Cochons de Montagne
I love Chicken Cordon Bleu. The salty of the ham and the gooey cheese. How could you possibly improve it? Sounds like a challenge to me. I substituted sausage for the ham, used a chunk of cheese instead of slices and did an easier breading. Then I baked it instead of deep frying which is messy. Welcome to the creation of Chicken Mountain Bleu! Continue reading Chicken Mountain Bleu
I’d just got home from curling. She Who Must Be Obeyed had hamburger out and told me I was making dinner. I decided on a nice hearty casserole to warm us up on a cold winter day. However, I didn’t feel like making a roux based cheese sauce and decided to use Campbell’s Condensed Mushroom Soup as a base. I also used the low sodium version. I like mushroom soup based casseroles but they just aren’t as rich as ones made with a sauce from scratch. I thought I could overcome that and made Beef Rotini Casserole. Continue reading Beef Rotini Casserole
I love Mac & Cheese. However, it often isn’t very cheesy and it can be a bit bland. So I added extra cheese, made a ham topping and added a few more adult seasonings and made a great updated Mac & Cheese. As for the name Monday Mac & Cheese, I didn’t know what to call this. She Who Must Be Obeyed heaved a long suffering sigh and said, “Call it Monday.” She must be obeyed. Continue reading Monday Mac & Cheese
This is one of those worn out recipe cards in our recipe box. She Who Must Be Obeyed makes these regularly. It is no surprise they are a favourite. They can be served as a cookie or an appetizer. The recipe has no added sugar but the sharp cheddar gives them a rich satisfying taste. Continue reading Jean’s Cheesies
She Who Must Be Obeyed likes those casseroles that our mothers used to make. You know the ones, a can of mushroom soup, noodles, cheese and some kind of protein. Mostly they were pretty bland. Who would want those. Ok, they’re not that bad. Don’t look at me like that. Ok, I like them too. However, they can be adjusted to make them more flavourful and made from less processed food. That is what I have done with Beef Mushroom Casserole. Continue reading Beef Mushroom Casserole