Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Bean and Bratwurst Soup

This is just a quickie post and not my usual full post with a detailed recipe and several photographs.  But it worked so well that I took a picture of leftovers the next night.  It reminded me of my favorite bean and bacon soup as a teenager, only better.

  • 2 lbs dried northern beans, soaked overnight
  • 19 oz Johnsonville bratwursts, removed from casings and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup each of celery, onion, and carrot, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled minced
  • 2 quarts chicken broth
  • 2 bay leaf
  • 1.5 tsp Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Brown the bulk bratwurst sausage in a large soup pot.  Remove to a colander to drain, reserving 2 Tbsp of the pork grease.  Refrigerate the meat.
  2. Saute the onion, celery, and carrot in the pork grease until tender, about 5-7 minutes.  Season with about 1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper while sauteing. 
  3. Stir in 2 Tbsp of All purpose flour, garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes until coarsely blended. 
  4. Whisk in the broth.  Add the beans, bay leaf, and Italian seasoning to the pot.  Bring to a simmer, cover and maintain simmer for 1 hour.  
  5. Return the sausage to the pot and simmer for another 15 minutes.  Remove bay leaves.  Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper as needed.
Johnsonville Italian Chili Challenge
Johnsonville is running a new contest and I find the format very interesting.  They have 4 chili recipes.  Your challenge is to take one of them, change it up and then submit your modified recipe.  [OFFICIAL PAGE HERE]

Each of the 4 original chefs will select the one submission that they think best adapts their original recipe.  The four winners will each win a 5.5 qt Flame Stewpot from Emile Henry, a year's supply of sausage, and a $1,000 shopping spree!

I like the fact this is an adaptation recipe only contest and not requiring original recipes.   I can't wait to see how the winners put their spin on the 4 original recipes.  Can you imagine being one of the 4 judges, having one of your favorite recipes in this contest, and having to choose who modified YOUR recipe the best? 

Check out the link and see if you think that you have the perfect tweak to win the $1,000.

[Standard Disclaimer]  I have a business relationship with Johnsonville and receive some compensation from them for various activities.  But this is not a sponsored post.  In fact, I found out about this contest via Facebook just like anyone else would. 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Tater Patch (Tater Tot Nachos)

Warning:  This game day snack has little to no nutritional value, is lowbrow, and is a culinary atrocity - but dang it's good.

tater tot nachos, tatchos

The idea for this dish came from a hilarious incident that happened at the Kingsford Invitational in November.

While at the hotel in Rolla, MO, the group of us were making plans for after dinner that evening.  The desk clerk told us about a bar called "The Tater Patch" that was "just across the street".   We decided that The Tater Patch was our evening destination.  

We all got back on the bus to head back to the isolated contest site miles away in the middle of nowhere.  We ended up lost on a dirt road.  About a half mile or so down the dark deserted road, there was a single trailer and the driver had to do a 17 point turn in their yard.  The whole time, Brad Orrison (The Shed BBQ), was a laugh riot.  He kept joking about The Tater Patch in an exaggerated Southern drawl.  Brad encouraged the driver to hurry up because he heard banjo music.  By the time the bus actually got turned around, I was almost in tears from laughing so hard at the stuff Brad was coming up with.  

We finally made it safely to the contest site for dinner and then back to the hotel.  As we were gathering in the lobby to head to the bar, Chris Lilly (Big Bob Gibson's BBQ) was checking in to the hotel and I asked him if he was going to join us. 

A local girl in the lobby overheard where we were planning on going and interjected, "Oh no, you're not going there.  They're kind of like motorcycle gangs and would make trouble with outsiders.  They like girls though, so she (gesturing at Robyn GrillGrrrl Meddlin-Lindars) would be okay."  [I SWEAR this is an exact quote, I am not embellishing this at all.]

"What did she say?" someone in our group asked and Chris Lilly paraphrased, "She said if we go there we're gonna die!"

Turns out it wasn't "just across the highway" either, it was a mile or so away and none of us had vehicles.  Greg Rempe (BBQ Central Radio Show) summed it up best, "I'm not walking a mile and a half to get punched in the face, I can do that here!"

So we ended up not going to The Tater Patch out of an abundance of caution and laziness.  But that night I decided I was going to make a dish called The Tater Patch as a tribute to the fun and chaos that we had.

Edit:  If you check out the comments section, you will see several folks that have chimed in that The Tater Patch was gravely misrepresented by the person that warned us away from there.  Sounds like the only "troublemakers" there are folks just like us having fun and we missed out on a good time.  They advise that it is nothing like the second girl working at the hotel said.  So next time we'll make sure to check it out like we originally intended.

The idea I had was a "nacho" dish made with tater tots and some leftover smoked chopped pork.  A hot mess, just in time for the upcoming big game.

tater tot nachos, tatchos, game day food, recipe

Here is The Tater Patch from the bottom up
  • Ore Ida Crispy Crowns (kind of like tater tots, but smaller and more crispy crust than soft insides)
  • shredded pepper jack cheese
  • smoked chopped pork
  • shredded lettuce
  • cooked chili or pinto beans
  • diced tomato
  • diced red onion
  • black olives
  • diced fire roasted jalapeno
  • shredded colby jack cheese
  • chopped cilantro
  • The Shed Spread bbq sauce
  • fire roasted chile ranch dressing
  • sliced green onion
fire roasting chile peppers on big green egg kamado grill craycort grate
Fire roasted chiles - the best aroma ever!

Cooking the crispy crowns or tater tots on a raised rack ensures even crisping without bothering to flip them.  I seasoned them with bbq rub as they came out.

Whether for burgers or nachos, always season your lettuce with salt and pepper.  It makes a difference.

tater tot nachos, tatchos, game day food, recipe

You'll want a fork to devour these.  Obviously, you don't want to eat like this once a week, or once a month for that matter but a couple times a year won't be the end of the world. 

The fire roasted chile ranch dressing was something that I just threw together for this but I will absolutely be making this for salads, wings, and burgers.  

Fire Roasted Chile Ranch Dressing

Fire Roasted Chile Ranch Dressing

by www.nibblemethis.com
Prep Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients (1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 1/4 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup Greek no fat yogurt
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 2 Tbsp fire roasted green chiles, peeled, seeded, and finely diced
  • 1 Tbsp fire roasted sweet red pepper, peeled, seeded, and finely diced
  • 1 Tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dill
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flake
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp minced dried onion
  • 1/4 tsp dried chives, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Fire roast your chiles and bell peppers over a hot fire until charred on all sides. Remove and place in a bowl covered with Glad wrap for 5 minutes. Split open, remove the seeds and scrape off the charred peel, then dice. I used Anaheim chile for a mild heat. If you want spicier, use jalapeno, serrano, or even some habanero chiles. Yes, you can use green chiles from a can but doing them yourself gives an unbeatable flavor.
  2. Whisk all ingredients together and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  3. Note: For a thicker ranch dip, add more yogurt.
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Speaking of The Shed and their sauces, Brad's dad, Craig aka "Daddy-O" is heading up the launch of The Saucery.  
Craig Orrison and me at Anheuser-Busch in St. Louis having breakfast beers.  Photo credit:  Robyn Meddlin-Lindars
Soon, The Saucery will be getting The Shed's famous bbq sauces on retail shelves near you.  Be on the lookout.  

[Standard disclaimer]  I received no compensation from The Shed for this post.  I'm just spreading the news about the spread of The Shed Spread. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Roasted Red Pepper and Bacon Soup

We still have ice on the ground in some places and now an ice storm is going to bring freezing rain and sleet early in the morning.  That means it was a perfect night for comfort food.  How about a Monte Cristo sandwich and a rich bowl of roasted red pepper and bacon soup? 

Monte Cristo sandwiches are so good it should be criminal.  It is a double-decker sandwich of ham and Emmental (or Swiss) cheese dipped in a batter and grilled like French toast, then served with a warm raspberry sauce.  If that is criminally good, I was aiming for "Mr. Chow international criminal" status.  So I swapped out one of the layers of ham for some chopped pork bbq that I had in the freezer and amped up the raspberry sauce with a chipotle. 

I am not doing a full blown recipe for the sandwich since you don't need a recipe for that but the sauce was 
1 Tbsp butter
1 tsp onion, finely minced
1/2 to 3/4 cup of seedless black raspberry jam
1 chipotle, seeded and diced
1 Tbsp water
1 tsp white wine vinegar

Saute the onion in butter until tender.  Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in everything else until blended.  Keep warm over low heat just until serving.

The soup was a "pantry soup" made up from whatever I had on hand.  Except garlic.  I had run out of garlic so we had to run to Food City and fight through the Snowpocalypse crowds that were there buying beer, bread, milk and eggs.  

Roasted Red Pepper and Bacon Soup

by www.nibblemethis.com
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 35 min

Ingredients (4 servings)
  • 6 slices bacon, diced
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely diced
  • 1/3 cup carrot, peeled and finely diced
  • 1/4 cup celery, finely diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 Tbsp all purpose flour
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 3 oz Neufchatel cheese, cubed (or cream cheese)
  • 1/2 cup roasted red pepper, finely diced
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 3/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Crisp the bacon in a 3 quart pot and then remove with a slotted spoon, reserving 2 Tbsp of the bacon grease.
  2. Saute the carrot, onion, and celery in the bacon grease until tender, about 6-8 minutes. Season lightly with salt and pepper during the saute. Just a pinch or two of salt and pepper.
  3. Add the garlic and whisk in the all purpose flour, whisking until well combined, another 1-2 minutes.
  4. Whisk in the chicken broth, bring to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes. Then use an immersion blender to smooth out this soup base.
  5. Return to a simmer and whisk in the small cubes of Neufchatel cheese, smoked paprika and roasted red pepper. Cook another 10 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in the half and half. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper to taste. I used maybe 1/4 tsp of pepper and go light on the salt, remember the bacon is going back in and it will add saltiness.
  7. Stir in the bacon crisps just before serving.
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Save your celery leaves, they make for a good garnish.

I used Texas toast for the outer slices of bread and regular bread for the inside piece.

I'll have to do an extra work out this weekend for eating this one!

We ended up not eating until 9:30 because of the store trip but this soup and sandwich made it all worth it.  The smoky pork and the sweet and spicy chipotle-raspberry sauce elevated the Monte Cristo and the creamy soup was just what the weatherman ordered! 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Coal Fired Pulled Pork Hand Pies and a Giveaway

January 23rd is National Pie Day.  How in the world the American Pie Council did not choose March 14th for that day escapes me.  Anyway, in honor of the upcoming National Pie Day, I made pies.

We had our first snow storm in two years yesterday and Trevor and his teenaged friends spent last night and today having a blast in the white stuff.   Here are three truths about Tennessee snow:
  1. It makes my Florida friends and family jealous of "all that snow".
  2. It makes Tennesseans incapable of driving.
  3. It makes all my Northern friends laugh and ask, "You call THAT snow?"
I knew the kids were going to be hungry so I made up a batch of these pork pies based on a recipe for BBQ Chicken Empanadas from Greg Henry's new book - Savory Pies.

Coal Fired Pork Hand Pies

adapted from the book Savory Pies by Greg Henry

Ingredients (serves 8)
  • 1 recipe pie crust
  • 1/2 lb pulled or chopped BBQ pork
  • 4 oz pepper jack cheese, shredded
  • 1/3 cup fire roasted sweet bell pepper, diced
  • 1 Anaheim chile, fire roasted, seeded, peeled and diced (or 1 oz diced green chile)
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup sweet BBQ sauce
  1. Whisk the egg and water together to make an egg wash, set aside.
  2. Mix together everything else, except the dough.
  3. Divide the pie crust dough into 8 equal balls. On a dusted surface, roll out balls into 6" circles.
  4. Top each circle with 3-4 heaping tablespoons of the BBQ mixture.
  5. Lightly brush one edge with the egg wash. Fold the other edge over the meat mix and to the washed edge. Press the two edges together and crimp with a fork to seal in the meat mixture. Cut two shallow slits on the top. Repeat with the remaining dough balls.
  6. Place in the fridge for 20 minutes.
  7. Preheat a charcoal grill set up for an indirect cook at 425f. Place pizza stone in.
  8. Brush the hand pies with any remaining egg wash and place on the pizza stone.
  9. Bake on the grill until the crusts are crispy and golden, about 25-30 minutes.
  10. Remove and allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
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I like using the mini-sweet bell peppers when available for the variety of color.

I made my first pie crust ever and it was easy thanks to the book.

The crusts don't have to be perfectly round.

If you want perfect, you can trim the edges with a sharp knife at this point.

The pizza stone is raised off of the plate setter by a set of 1/4" spacers (just some metal pieces).

If you have extra meat filling left over, stick it in a tortilla for a quesadilla.
Keep them on a raised rack while hot so the bottoms don't steam and get soggy.

They were excellent and disappeared quickly!

Savory Pies and a Giveaway
When I heard that Greg Henry was going to release his first book, I quickly pre-ordered it on Amazon.  Soon after that, I also got a review copy from the publisher, so I have a copy to give away.  

But first, my thoughts about the book.  I have to be honest, I rarely read long narratives about food related books and I doubt you do either.  So I'm going to stick to a quick bulletized review.

  • The book is about everything BUT dessert pies.  Savory tarts, triangles, galettes, pizzettes, bocaditos, pot pies, pasticcio, flat breads, tarte tatin, shakshuka, clafouti and more.  These pies are meals!
  • Savory Pies starts off by arming you with 5 basic pastry recipes that are utilized throughout the book or with your own creation.  
  • I've never made a pastry crust in my life, Alexis has always handled that for us.  But I followed the book and was successful on the first try.  It was easy as... (not going to say "pie")
  • The book is organized into appetizer pies, main course meat pies, main course vegetarian pies, and ends with 15 hand pies like the ones I did here.   Some of the many recipes that I want to try include:
    • Cotija Cheese Bocaditos with Charred Chiles
    • Bite Sized Beef Wellingtons
    • Shrimp and Grits Pot Pies
    • Corn Pudding Pie with Chiles and Chicken
    • Tilly's Pastelles
  • Savory Pies is stuffed with plenty of full color photos of the recipes. 
  • The recipes travel the country, the world and even time.  
  • It is not just recipes.  Greg has a unique way of educating you without realizing you are being taught.
  • Wine parings are provided throughout the book by SippitySup's wine expert, Grant Henry.
  • The book is good for people who like to follow recipes but then it is also good as an idea book.  Several times, I found myself thinking, "I wouldn't have even thought of that, great idea, I have to try something like that!"
  • Bottom line:  My money was well spent.
So I have the extra copy to give away to one lucky reader.  The giveaway runs between now and Thursday, January 24th, 2012 (EST).   Just leave a comment below and tell me your favorite pie (it can be savory or dessert pies).   If you use the anonymous option to comment, be sure to leave a way that I can contact you (email, forum screen name, etc).  

Giveaway Now Closed 
The winner was #12, Zan C of Texas!  

I think Zan is the first two time giveaway winner on my blog but I could be mistaken.  Zan, I will email you to verify your address hasn't changed.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Shrimp and Bratwurst Mini Skewer Appetizers

Wow, have these playoff games been exciting this year so far been exciting or what?  (I know a lot of y'all don't follow sports but just as many do!)

Division championships games are coming up, then the big game, and before you know it, March Madness will be here.  That means a lot of upcoming game day parties and get-togethers.  Whether you are watching the games at big parties or just hanging out with family, finger foods and munchies seem to dominate the menus.

Here is one that I made up for this weekend's games.  The spicy shrimp, savory bratwurst and sweet BBQ really worked together for a tasty two bite appetizer.

One of the many things that I like about this recipe is that it is easy to scale up for a larger number of servings.  I based it on one brat (there are always brats around at football parties so you can just steal one from the "brat tub").

Shrimp and Bratwurst Skewers

by www.nibblemethis.com
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10

Ingredients (8 mini skewers)
  • 1 cooked Johnsonville Bratwurst, sliced into 8 pieces
  • 8 large shrimp, peeled and deviened
  • 1/2 tsp Cajun seasoning
  • 1 jarred roasted red pepper, cut into 1/4" x 1 1/2" strips
  • 1 green onion, cut into 1/4 x 1 1/2" strips
  • 8 large toothpicks or appetizer skewers
  • 1/4 cup sweet BBQ sauce
  1. Preheat a charcoal grill to 450-500f (med high to high heat).
  2. Season the shrimp with the cajun seasoning.
  3. Wrap each brat slice with a piece of green onion, a strip of red pepper, and a shrimp. Stick a skewer through the tail, securing the green onion and pepper, through the edge of the brat, and back through the veggies and shrimp on the other side. NOTE: You won't be sticking the skewer through the center of the bratwurst, it will be a little off center depending on the size of your shrimp.
  4. Lightly oil your grill grates and grill the mini-skewers until pink and done, about 2 minutes per side.
  5. Serve drizzled with a sweet BBQ sauce.
Variation idea: To make it a more elegant "knife and fork" appetizer, serve on a small, circular baked grit cake. Remove the skewer and top with a smoked gouda cheese sauce instead of the BBQ sauce.
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Notice how the skewer doesn't go through the exact center of the brat.  Just enough to hold it all together.

You can cook the brat ahead of time, just don't slice it until you are ready to assemble the skewers. 

This will only take a few minutes, don't walk away.

Tip:  You will want a set of long handled tongs for flipping the mini-skewers.

The sweet BBQ sauce offsets the heat but this might also be good with a honey mustard sauce.

I made these twice this weekend.  The first time I made them on Alexis' Big Green Egg because I was smoking a pork butt on mine.  

Quick notes for my BBQ geek friends about the pork butt, since I'm not doing a post on this.  It was a 7.7lb butt, rubbed with a mix of Billy Bones Comp & XXX Cherry rubs (1:1).  Smoke was cherry wood chunks (3) and a handful or so of hickory chips (not soaked).  12 hours at 250f-ish until it hit 197f.   Sauce was a North Carolina vinegar sauce (more Piedmont style than Eastern NC).
This was 3 or 4 hours into the cook late last night.

That's a glass cutting board, I'm not shredding it on a towel :)

I'm already looking forward to more pork for dinner!
I hope you all have had a great weekend!  

[Standard Disclaimer]  I have a relationship with Johnsonville and this post was done in preparation for an appearance on behalf of Johnsonville later this week.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Grilling with Stoneware: Baked Ziti

Last night, Trevor had a friend over so I set up my Big Green Egg as a convection oven (plate setter in, legs down) and made a baked ziti.  Of course, you could make this in your oven but you know I like playing with fire.
stoneware, Big Green Egg baked ziti, grill dome baked ziti, stoneware on kamado grill

When I use my stoneware on the grill, I often get comments asking about the dishes.  I think that stoneware is an ideal cooking tool for the grill because it
  • is durable - some of these pieces are 8+ years old.  I have only ever had one piece break and that was 100% my fault.
  • provides even heat distribution - just like the shell of my Big Green Egg, stoneware's thermal characteristics promote even cooking
  • is non-reactive - stoneware won't leach ions like cast iron does when exposed to acidic liquids, giving that metallic taste
  • develops a non-stick surface with use - NEVER wash them except with hot water and nylon scrubbers or brushes.  It's like cast iron, you build up a seasoning
  • is functional - they let me get full use out of my BGE as an oven, cooking breads, casseroles, etc
Our "set" is a mixed breed of Food Network (brand formerly available through Kohl's) and the other half is the Family Heritage Classics Collection from Pampered Chef.

stoneware for big green egg, stoneware for kamado grill, stoneware for Grill Dome

I can't find the Food Network line available anymore but I know the Pampered Chef is still available.  I prefer the non-glazed style.  The glazed and/or enamel ones are pretty but cooking on a live fire grill is going to stain them eventually.

Here are some tips from Pampered Chef for caring for your stoneware.  

Back to the ziti.  Most baked ziti dishes I have had are tomato based but I thought I'd use a spicy, cheesy white sauce. 

Fire Baked Ziti

by www.nibblemethis.com

Ingredients (4-6 servings)
    You'll need
    • 3 links Johnsonville Mild Italian Sausages, removed from casings and crumbled
    • 3/4 cup onion, diced
    • 1/2 cup green bell pepper, diced
    • 3 whole cloves garlic
    • 2 cups dried ziti pasta, cooked according to directions
    • 1/4 cup dried bread crumbs
    • 1/4 cup grated Pecorino-Romano cheese
    For the white sauce
    • 1 1/2 Tbsp butter
    • 1 1/2 Tbsp all purpose flour
    • 2 cups whole milk
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 3/4 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
    • 1/4 tsp McCormick red pepper flake
    • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
    • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino-Romano cheese
    • 1/2 cup grated colby-jack or other mild cheese
    1. Preheat a grill safe pan over a medium hot grill. Add a teaspoon of high temp oil (refined canola, peanut, etc) and brown the Italian sausage, about 5 minutes or so. Remove to a collander.
    2. Add another splash of oil to the pan and saute the peppers, onion and garlic until tender, about 5-8 minutes. Remove and when slightly cool, mince the cooked garlic.
    3. Preheat a pan over medium heat. Add butter, melt and whisk in flour just long enough to form a blonde roux.
    4. Add the milk, in small batches (1/4 cup) at first, whisking continuously until fully blended. Add the seasonings and bring to a slight simmer. Cook until thickened, whisking occasionally, about 10 minutes.
    5. Stir in 1/2 cup of Pecorino-Romano and 1/2 cup of colby-jack cheese in batches until melted.  Remove the bay leaf.
    6. Mix together with the meat, cooked pasta, and veggies, tossing thoroughly. Pour into a lightly greased pie pan or 8x8 casserole dish. Cover with foil and cook for 30 minutes at 400f.
    7. Remove foil, top with crumbs and remaining cheese and bake uncovered for 15 more minutes.
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    browning meat on kamado grill
    Brown the meat in two batches if you have to, don't overcrowd the pan or the meat will steam instead of brown.

    saute veggies vegetables on big green egg kamado grill
    There is nothing like the smell of peppers and onions cooking outside on a grill.

    At first, the white sauce will SEEM like it won't thicken.  When you see "film" try to form like this between whisks, it is just 2-3 minutes from thickening.

    Ready to be foiled and put on the grill (or oven).

    baked ziti on big green egg, baked ziti recipe grill dome
    Fire baked pasta - mmmmmmmmm.

    baked ziti on the kamado grill
    Crispy on top, creamy in the middle.
    Yep, I used hot dog buns for garlic bread.  I didn't have any French or Italian bread and saw a few hot dog buns in the bread pantry.  It works for me.  

    Follow up questions:
    Would you please share what you did to explode your stoneware on your BGE? I would like to avoid it, and I would like to learn from your mistake, if you are willing to share!

    I was cooking something in a stoneware pie plate and it was running a little hot and the drippings were starting to burn.  I had just opened a cold beer and absentmindedly thought that I would just add a little to keep them from burning.  As soon as the cold liquid hit the hot stoneware, there was a very distinctive "KLINK" and the stoneware split into three pieces.  I knew better, I just wasn't thinking.

    My wife is a consultant and I was wondering if I could use it on the grill and she checked into it. Pampered Chef doesn't recommend it. You have had good luck with it though. Do you only use it on your egg or have you used it on a regular grill over indirect heat?

    I think Pamperchef doesn't recommend using any direct heat on stoneware, grilling or otherwise.  Most of the time I use my stoneware with indirect heat, whether on our Eggs or on a standard grill (yes, I do use these on other grills too http://www.nibblemethis.com/2011/05/bourbon-and-cherry-grilled-pork-chops.html).  I have used some over direct heat at around 350-400f but that was about 6-8" from the coals, not super close, so there was some buffer there.

    I don't have a, what did you call it, a plate setter? If I took a cast iron griddle and set my casserole dish on top of that, it would serve the same purpose right?

    Yes, that would be a good substitution.  Just make sure to place some kind of spacer between the cast iron and stoneware so you aren't getting more heat on the bottom than the top.  

    For more great sausage recipes (grilling and otherwise), check out Johnsonville's home page.

    [Standard Disclaimer]  I have a relationship with Johnsonville but this is not a sponsored post.  I have no relationship with Kohls or Pampered Chef. 

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

    Grilled Cajun Pork Po'boy

    Po'boy, hoagie, sub.

    What's the difference?  I'm no sandwich expert but from what I understand, they are mostly regional variations of the same thing.  Po-boys often have fried seafood in them, but not always.  What pushes this one into "po'boy" category to me is the spicy Cajun pork, the French baguette, and the remoulade.  Whatever you want to call it, this sandwich is a winner.
    grilled cajun pork po'boy, grilled cajun pork sub, grilled cajun pork sandwich

    This fits the bill for feeding a party crowd for all of the college bowl games and playoff games going on during the next few weeks.  You can either cut this to be 4 large subs po-boys that will feed a hearty appetite or cut this into 12 smaller portions for a game party platter.  

    Grilled Cajun Pork Po'boys

    by www.nibblemethis.com
    Prep Time: 15
    Cook Time: 30

      You'll need
      • 2 pork tenderloins, trimmed and silverskin removed
      • 4 tsp Cajun seasoning
      • 1/2 head iceberg lettuce, shredded or thinly sliced
      • 2 tomatoes, sliced thin
      • 2 French baguettes
      For the remoulade
      • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
      • 2 Tbsp Creole mustard
      • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
      • 2 tsp parsley, finely minced
      • 1 tsp Cajun seasoning
      • 1/2 tsp dried minced garlic
      • 1/4 tsp dried minced onion
      • salt and pepper to taste
      For the sub dressing
      • 1 Tbsp olive oil
      • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
      • 1/4 tsp Kosher salt
      • 1/4 tsp black pepper
      • 1/4 tsp dried thyme
      1. Whisk the remoulade ingredients together very well and refrigerate for at least one hour.
      2. Preheat a charcoal grill to 400f (Medium-High).
      3. Season tenderloins on all sides with the 4 tsp of Cajun rub.
      4. Grill the tenderloins, turning occasionally, until they reach an internal temperature of 145f, about 22-30 minutes. Remove from the grill and let rest on a raised rack for 10 minutes.
      5. Split the loaves in half and grill (split side down) until toasted.
      6. Whisk the dressing ingredients together and toss with the shredded lettuce.
      7. Slice the pork tenderloins very thinly and at a 45 degree angle.
      8. Top each baguette bottom with the shredded lettuce, tomatoes, and sliced pork. Slather the top buns liberally with the remoulade.
      9. Cut each po'boy in half, for 4 very filling sandwiches. Cut each one into 6 pieces for a more reasonable serving or for making a party platter.
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      resting grilled pork tenderloin
      Save any of the juices from resting and add them to your remoulade.  Makes it even better.

      This is a quickie version of remoulade but it is almost as good as my fresh version.

      spreading remoulade on toasted bread
      Don't be shy slathering the bread with the remoulade. 

      grilled cajun pork po'boy, grilled cajun pork sub, grilled cajun pork sandwich
      One of these filled Alexis and me up, Trevor ate two.
      grilled cajun pork po'boy, grilled cajun pork sub, grilled cajun pork sandwich
      These portions are big enough to feed a gorilla.  If gorillas ate po'boys, that is.
      We ate this two nights in a row, I just kept one of the tenderloins whole until dinner the next night.  Then warmed it up in the oven and sliced it up.  They disappeared on both nights and got two thumbs up from the whole family.

      The crispy toasted bread, spicy pork, seasoned veggies, and flavorful remoulade make this po'boy feel rich!