Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Slow Cooked Pulled Pork On A Freshly Baked Ciabatta Roll

Let's Dish

Photo Mar 31, 7 00 52 PM

Having worked in the barbecue industry for over 30 years, I  believe any cabbage slaw should be a part of your pulled pork sandwich. It just adds another layer of flavor and crunch.

I made a Fennel slaw for this sandwich and If you’d like my recipe, just go to the “menu”, at the top right of my home page, then to the category labeled “salad dishes”. You can also type the key words, fennel slaw, in the search bar.

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I’ve made Chipotle- Coke pulled pork in the crock pot, and it’s super delicious and really easy. For that recipe, just click on the “slow cooker dishes” and scroll through, or just type it in the search bar at the top right of my home page. This time I’m using my Dutch oven to cook my bone-in pork shoulder or better know as a pork butt.

This time, I’m making a really easy wet rub that can be done in the food processor. I like this method because, you can make the wet rub in advance. I’ll explain.

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Equipment: Dutch Oven, Food Processor

Ingredients For Wet Rub:
1 large onion quartered
4 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons of Champayne wine vinegar (white vinegar is fine)
1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons  ground cumin
1 tablespoons ground mustard
2 tablespoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon paprika
2 tablespoons of onion powder
2 seeded Chipotle peppers
2 teaspoons of the Adobo sauce from the can of Chipotle peppers
1/4 cup water

4 -5 pound ( covered in the wet rub) bone-in Pork shoulder
2 large onions quartered
1/2 cup unsalted chicken broth

Directions For Wet Rub:
Place all of the above ingredients into a food processor. Process until all the ingredients are combined. Place the pork butt ( pork shoulder) on a sheet pan and massage the wet rub all over the pork. Even in all of its crevices.  Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.

Directions For Braising Pork:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the quartered onions in the bottom of the Dutch oven.  Place the pork butt, fat side up, resting on top of the onions, and pour in the chicken broth. Place the lid on and transfer the pot to the oven. Cook for approximately 4 to 4-1/2 hours, or until pork is tender.  When you remove the pork from the pot, the meat should want to fall apart and away from the bone.

Place the pork onto a sheet pan. Turn the stove on, med-high heat, and reduce the liquid in the pot by half. This should take about 10 minutes. While the liquid is reducing, remove the bone and the fat cap. Use two forks to shred the pork.  Once all the pork is shredded and the liquid has reduced, add the pork back into the pot. Turn the pot down to the lowest setting to keep warm until ready to serve.

I serve the pork on buttered and grilled Ciabatta rolls top with my fennel slaw and sliced bread and butter pickles.


Braised Boneless Short Ribs In A Red Wine Reduction With Root Vegetables Over Cheddar Grits

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This has to be one of the coldest days we’ve had in Orlando in a really long time, so I needed to bring out the big guns for dinner tonight. Steve’s been working on roofs all day and I know he’d want something comforting to warm him up. I went on a trip to our farmer’s market and decided to make short ribs. I found that they carry boneless short ribs which I’ve never seen anywhere else before, so I bought them. I guess I should tell you that our farmer’s market has both a meat department and a produce department. You can read about it under “local information” on my blog. In the meat department they also carry a variety of fish and cheese. I definitely wanted some good white cheddar for my grits, so this worked out perfectly. Next onto the produce side of the market to see what’s available for my dish tonight. I found a beautiful butternut squash and some leaf top carrots. I would say that’s going to do the job.

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I have all my veggies ready and chopped about the same size so that they cook evenly. I also added diced onion, minced garlic, and pureed Piquillo peppers ( jarred roasted red peppers are fine too) to the mix. This is what the boneless short ribs look like. You can see they have great marbling throughout the meat, which will make for a tender and flavorful short rib. In a large bowl I place all the meat with some olive oil, Kosher salt, and black pepper. I then tossed them really well before laying them out onto two baking sheets. I have the oven set at 450 degrees because I’m going to sear the meat all at one time by roasting them at a very high temperature. I put the meat in for about 15 minutes, then I look at them to see if they have developed a nice brown crust all over. I love this method instead of browning them off in batches on top of the stove. Also I can start cooking the vegetables off on top of the stove while the meat is searing.

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You can see that I have an oven thermometer set in the oven to make sure it’s at the temperature I want. Now, you want to look at the meat after 15 minutes of roasting, and if they are not at the stage where they have that nice sear look to them, then let them go a few minutes longer. Be sure to keep checking their progress until they look like the picture above.

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On the top of the stove while the meat is in the oven, I work on getting the veggies ready for the meat to join them. To start, I add in my heat up a heavy bottom pot on med to med high heat, then I add in a little olive oil. Next, I toss in the onions and carrots, and stir them around to start them softening. I sprinkle in some salt and pepper. You want to season each layer. Then I add the butternut squash along with some tomato paste. I stir that around and sprinkle in a little bit more salt and pepper. I’ll show the total amount of Kosher salt and pepper in the ingredients list. To the pot now, I add in the pureed Piquillo peppers, and stir all that around really well so all the veggies are coated nicely, before adding in my fresh herbs. Along with the herbs I throwing in some crushed red pepper flakes for some heat, and adding in some fresh chopped rosemary and thyme leaves. Stir the herbs all through and next for the liquids.

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For my liquids, I using a Cabernet Sauvignon to deglaze the pot. Still having the stove on med to med high heat, I poured in some of that delicious wine and scraped all the bits from the bottom of the pot, giving the wine a chance to reduce. About this time is when the boneless short ribs are ready to come out of the oven. Just set them aside for a minute. After the wine has reduced, I add in my beef consomme and beef broth.

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After I added the beef consomme and the beef broth, I add the seared short ribs into the pot. Any juices too, that’s extra flavor. Bring all this up to a boil then reduce to a simmer and place into a 325 degree oven for 2-1/2- 2-3/4 hours. The short ribs will be fully cooked and will be fork tender.

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After I remove the pot from the oven, I remove the meat from the pot carefully, because it’s really tender and you don’t want it to break up just yet. In a small bowl I one heaping tablespoon of corn starch ( potato starch is fine too) and add it to 1/4 cup of water. I whisk that together to make a slurry. This is what I’m going to use to thicken the sauce up just a bit. I don’t want it too thick just enough so it’s not like soup. Pour the slurry into the pot which is set on med heat, and bring it up to a boil. Stirring everything continuously until the broth has thickened to the consistency that the liquid in the pot coats the back of a wooden spoon. You want it to be like a loose gravy, so when you ladle it over the cheese grits, the sauce will cling to the veggies and soak into the grits. At this point I add the meat back into the pot and place the lid on. I put the pot onto the back burner, once that hasn’t been used and just set it to warm or low to keep everything hot while I make these delicious grits.

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Now let me tell you how I made these grits. I bought white stone ground grits that I added some really good white cheddar cheese to and then once they were prepared I baked them off. In a large I added some heavy cream and water, and brought that up to a boil with 1 teaspoon of Kosher salt. I then whisked in the grits, and as soon as the liquid was absorbed, I took the grits off the heat, added in some unsalted butter. I whisked the butter through until it was incorporated. Changed to a wooden spoon and stirred in the grated white cheddar. Next I buttered a casserole dish and poured the grits into the dish, spreading them out evenly, and add just a little more cheese on the top. In a 350 degree oven I covered the dish with foil, and baked them off for around 15 minutes, then I took the foil off and baked them for another 5-7 minutes. When the grits were hot and bubbly, they were done and I took them out and let them rest for a couple of minutes. You can see what they look like in the last picture above. On a large plate I spooned on some of these delicious cheesy grits and then ladled some of my braised short ribs with that luxurious sauce with those root vegetables all over the top.

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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time For Short Ribs: 21/2- 2-3/4 hours
Oven Temp: 325 degrees
Yields: 4-6 servings

3 pounds of boneless short ribs
5 large carrots 1 inch dice
1 medium size butternut squash 1 inch dice
2 onions diced
3 large cloves of garlic minced
1 jar of Piquillo peppers or roasted red peppers, pureed
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 can of beef consomme
1 quart of beef broth
1 cup of Cabernet Sauvignon
2 tablespoon of fresh chopped rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon of fresh chopped thyme leaves
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt total ( this includes the seasoning of each layer as you are cooking the veggies)
1-1/2 teaspoons of black pepper ( this includes the seasoning of each layer as you are cooking the veggies)
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon of corn starch plus 1/4 cup of water for the slurry

Cook Time For Grits: 1 hour ( this includes baking time)
Ingredients for the grits:

1- 1/2 cups of stone ground grits ( white or yellow)
3 cups of water
1 cup of heavy cream
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
4 tablespoons of room temperature unsalted butter
2 cups of shredded white cheddar ( reserve 1/2 a cup for the topping)

Directions: Start with all the prep of the veggies. Next measure out all the herbs and seasoning you’ll need. Sear off the short ribs first, then start softening and seasoning all the veggies on med to med high heat on top of the stove. By the time you get to the point where you are adding in you liquids to the pot, will be about the time the short ribs will be coming out of the oven. Add the liquids to the veggies, then add the meat and their juices back into the pot with the veggies. Bring up to a boil then place the lid on and put into a 325 degree oven for 2-1/2- 2-3/4 hours or until the meat is fork tender. Remove the pot from the oven and remove the meat gently into a separate dish. Next thicken the sauce with the slurry and then add the meat back in. Place a lid on the pot and set on the back burner on warm while you prepare the grits. When you take the pot of short ribs out of the oven is when you want to change the oven temp to 350 for the baking of the grits. So now you start making the grits on top of the stove as explained above. Pour them into a buttered casserole dish, sprinkle the reserved cheese on top, and bake them off, covered,  for about 15 minutes. Finally remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-7 minutes until the grits are hot and bubbly. That’s it you are done. Plate the grits onto a plate and ladle the delicious braised short ribs with those root vegetables all over the top.


Blackberry Bourbon Barbecue Chicken Over Red Quinoa

Blackberry Bourbon Barbecue Chicken Over Red Quinoa

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When I started playing around with this recipe, I knew it was going to be delicious. The sweet and savory components, accompanied by the complexity of the flavors, really shine through.  If you’re not a fan of blackberries, don’t worry, there are other fruit options, like, apricots, peaches, even raspberries.

The other thing I wanted to talk about is how I’m preparing the chicken, for this dish. I know, whenever you make a one pot meal, the browning of the protein, first, is very important. This part of the cooking process ensures extra flavor and seals in the juices.

The browning of the meat in oil, and having to do that process in batches, can be a real pain. The oil splatters and it can get really messy. I’ve decided to oven roast the chicken and eliminate that step. The chicken pieces are still all caramelized and, no mess!

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour- 1-15 minutes ( remember the chicken is browning at the same time the sauce is be prepared on top of the stove)
Yields: 4 servings (serving 2 pieces of chicken per plate)
Equipment: 2 baking sheets

4 large chicken breast, bone-in skin-on (cut in half yielding 8 pieces)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Ingredients for sauce:
1 large onion diced
3 cloves of minced garlic
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper(optional)
1 pint of good bourbon
4-5 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
1 small jar of sugar free blackberry jam
1 standard bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce
2 1/2 cups of low sodium chicken broth
2 pints of fresh blackberries, reserve 1 pint for garnish
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh Italian flat leaf parsley for garnish

1 cup red quinoa, rinsed
2 cup low sodium chicken broth, or water

Directions For Roasting Chicken:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
After you’ve cut the 2 chicken breasts in half, pat them dry really well. Place the 8 breasts on two baking sheets. Drizzle the chicken with olive oil and season with Kosher salt and black pepper. Roast the chicken for 15 minutes.

While the chicken is in the oven, start the sauce on the top of the stove. Once you have all the ingredients working on top of the stove. Next, turn the oven to broil position. Keep a close eye on the chicken, and continue cooking for around another 5-7 minutes, or until the skin is golden brown.  Remove the chicken from the oven and set it aside. Set the oven to 350 degrees F.  The chicken will finish cooking during the braising process.

Directions For Sauce:
Oven set to 350 degrees F.
In a heavy bottom pot, on medium high heat, start sweating the onions and garlic. cayenne pepper, Kosher salt and black pepper, about 2-3 minutes. Add the bourbon and let reduce by half. Turn the heat down to medium, add the sugar-free blackberry jam, stir to combine. Next, add the liquids, the barbecue sauce and chicken broth. Again, stir to combine. Season with Kosher salt and black pepper to taste.  Continue cooking for another minute.

Add the chicken to the pot. Bring the pot back up to a bubble, reduce to a simmer, and place the lid on. Transfer the pot to the oven and cook for 40-45 minutes, or until chicken is completely cooked, internal temperature 165 degrees, and tender.

Once the pot comes out of the oven, carefully remove the chicken and set onto a plate. On medium heat, continue to cook the sauce, continually stirring so the sauce doesn’t burn, until sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Place the chicken back into the pot. Add the fresh blackberries. Turn the heat down to med-low and continue to cook with lid off, occasionally, but gently, stirring for another 15- 20 minutes.

Directions For Quinoa:
Cooks Note:  Be sure to rinse the quinoa thoroughly  before cooking as there is a bitter coating on the grains.
Bring the quinoa and chicken broth (or water) to a boil in a saucepan over high heat. Reduce to med-low heat, cover, and simmer util the quinoa is tender, and the water has been absorbed, about 15-20 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

To Serve: Lay the quinoa as a bed underneath the chicken. Garnish with fresh blackberries and Italian flat leaf parsley. Serve hot.

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1 Comment »

Braised Beef Short Ribs With Pappardelle

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I just loved the response I received on this dish. I know that once you make it, it will be something you’ll make again and again. Let’s get started. First it’s important to prep all the veggies.

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Here I have 5 cloves of whole peeled garlic, (all veggies cut into 2-1/2 in pieces), 2 carrots, 2 ribs of celery, 1 sweet potato, and 1 large sweet onion. I also had some left over tops to some bell peppers, red yellow and orange that I diced up as well. You could just add 1 of your favorite bell peppers to this mix.

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Now for the herbs. Here I have 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary,2 fresh bay leaves, and 6 or so sprigs of fresh thyme. Now if you don’t have fresh herbs, you could use dried, that’s fine. Remember to add less than I have here because dried tend to be a lot stronger than fresh and you don’t want to overpower all the other ingredients in the dish.

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The star of this dish are the beef short ribs. i want to let you know that this cut of meat can be expensive. My butcher happens to carry both types, bone-in and boneless. To be honest I’m really not sure if the boneless are the same cut, but whatever cut they are from they work perfectly. This allow me to get a lot more meat in this dish than if I had just used bone-in short ribs. Here I have 2-1 pound packages of boneless and a 2 pound package of bone-in. Above you will see that I have set the meat out on paper towel to pat them completely dry on all sides. The reason for this is to get a good sear on the outside of the meat. Brown is flavor and that’s what we want. I’m doing something a bit different here, instead of dusting them in seasoned flour and then browning them off in batches in a large pot. No not me, I’m going to roast them off in a really hot oven and save a bunch of time.

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I toss all the meat in some olive oil, Kosher salt, and pepper, and then spread them out onto 2 baking sheets. They will go into a 450 degree oven to roast for around 15-20 minutes.

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This is what they will look like when they come out. While the short ribs are roasting in the oven, on top of the stove this is what’s been happening. In a large braising pot, or any type of heavy bottom pot, I start on the veggies.

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Moving forward, I start with the onions in 3 tablespoons of olive oil. To that I add a sprinkle of Kosher salt and pepper, making sure to season each layer. Once they have softened slightly. I then add in 3 tablespoons of good tomato paste and let that cook with the onions for a minute, until the tomato paste has melted and coated the onions. I  then add in the rest of the veggies a little at a time. I add in the garlic, celery, and bell peppers.

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Now at this point I have my liquids for this dish ready and on stand-by.

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Now I add in all of my fresh herbs from earlier that I removed from their stems and 1 cup of red wine. I’m using a good Merlot for this dish. I’m adding in the bell peppers and celery at this point.

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I let this cup of wine reduce by half before adding any more liquid, for an extra depth of flavor. Stir this together and let simmer until the wine has reduced. Next I add in the carrots and sweet potatoes, and 1 can of San Marzano tomatoes, without their liquid,to the pot.

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I then add in equal parts wine and beef stock. You do not want to cover the veggies, just about 1/2 of the way up, because the veggies will release more liquid, and you don’t want the liquid to overflow from the pot once the lid is on and it’s in the oven. This is a braising process, and the meat will rest on the top. Now bring all of this up to a boil, then reduce to a simmer before adding the short ribs back in..

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Have the oven pre-heated to 350 degrees, with the lid on, place the pot into the oven and cook for another 2-1/2 hours.

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WOW! Does this not look amazing. So now I going to remove the meat take the bones out and shred the meat. Don’t forget to remove the 2 bay leaves, they’ve done their job.

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I have to say by adding the sweet potato to this dish give a nice sweetness. Alright now, we gong to thicken our sauce. To do this I process the veggies in a food processor. Be careful when processing hot veggies. Don’t fill up the processor too full.

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Start ladling the veggies into the processor.

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This is what it will look like when you’re done.

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Add the shredding beef short rib meat to the pureed sauce. Let this simmer on very low heat while you cook the pasta.

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This Artisanal pasta only cooks for 8 minutes. I cook it a little less because when I add it to the sauce it will continue cooking, and I want the pasta to be Al dente.  Toss the pasta through all that goodness. Garnish with some finely chopped fresh flat leaf Italian parsley, To serve it on I place it onto a large serving platter. This dish is one you’ll want to serve to company.

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