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Guacamole 3 Ways

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Guacamole, information pills the word alone is magic.   To say I heart guacamole is an understatement. But making that beautiful mound of green gold is another matter all together.  It can be one of the simplest things to make and also incredibly easy to mess up.  I speak from experience.  I just gave my Aunt one of my versions of guacamole and then decided to try it myself, cost only to find I had messed up my own recipe.   In my defense I change my recipes as I go.  So, pharmacy depending on how the wind is blowing or my mood I may make it spicy, chunky or through everything in but the kitchen sink.  I’m this way with most everything I cook.  I usually have an idea in my head of what I want to do and then go for it.  I call this on the fly cooking.  A few years ago I was really put to the test when I moved to NY and was living with friends on their couch.  It was  my job to take the vegetables we got from the co-op and plan the weeks meals with them before they rotted.  I really liked that challenge and still do, so when I got to farmers markets I try and plan my meals by the time I get home.  When making guacamole there are some things that are a must like cilantro and lime juice.  Some people use lemon but I prefer lime.  My usual go to has tomato, onion, garlic, lime, cilantro and seasonings, it’s basic but classic and it’s what everyone is used to.  The best thing about making guacamole is that you can have fun with it.  Experiment, use different peppers for a variety of spiciness, add radishes for extra crunch, or red onions instead of regular white .  However you make it, make sure the ingredients are as fresh as can be.

Guacamole 3 Ways
Recipe type: Appetizer
 
Ingredients
  • 2 Avocados
  • 1 Jalapeno
  • ¼ of a lime, juiced
  • 1 Small onion(white or red)
  • 1 Roma tomato,
  • ¼ of a bunch of cilantro
  • 1 Garlic clove
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pinch of Ancho chile powder
  • Pinch of cumin
  • Pinch of chipotle chile powder
Instructions
  1. In a bowl cut and smash avocados(save pit for later)
  2. Chop up tomato and onion
  3. Dice Jalapeno
  4. Chop Cilantro
  5. Mince Garlic
  6. Combine all ingredients, add spices, salt, pepper and lime juice
  7. Serve immediately.
Notes
Guacamole 2 Add radishes and Italian peppers and take out Jalapeno. It wont be hot but the pepper adds sweetness and the radishes add crunch. Guacamole 3 Use 1 large tomatillo and lemon juice instead of tomato,onion, and lime juice. Also only use garlic, salt and pepper as your spices. This is my I'm in a hurry version. Simple, yet delicious.

 

Oh and here’s a great tip.  If you find you have leftovers(ha, ha , that’s like having extra wine! no such thing!!!). Seriously,  if you have extra take a Ziploc baggy and  put the guacamole in it long with the pit of one of the avocados, squeeze ALL the air out of it and it will stay fresh for 24 hours.

Nathan’s, Beer and Burlesque

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Tonight we head out to the famed Coney Island to enjoy and evening of decadence.   First stop Nathan’s Famous hot dogs, viagra 60mg originated in Coney Island by Nathan Handwerker in 1916.  The menu has expanded quite a bit since it’s humble beginnings,  but we are here for the tried and true hot dogs and beer.  The dogs are crisp and have just the right amount of juiciness and flavor.  I like mine with just mustard and ketchup.  We will then take our goodies over to the boardwalk, nothing like a summer night at the beach with fireworks(did I forget to mention fireworks?!?!).  But that’s not all!!  After a wonderful fireworks display we head over to the Sideshows at the Seashore for some Coney Island Beer and Burlesque.  Tonight’s show is yoga burlesque, what that is, we will see!!!  Knowing the burlesque scene it is sure to entertain and get our hearts smiling with joy over the  sheer talent that these performers have.   We can’t wait!!! Have a great weekend everyone!!!!

If you want information on these business check out their websites below.

  http://nathansfamous.com/PageFetch/

http://www.coneyisland.com/

http://www.shmaltzbrewing.com/CONEY/index.html

 

Support your local art, music, theater and businesses.

THE Coleslaw

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5.0 from 2 reviews
The Coleslaw
Author: 
Recipe type: Side dish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8-10
 
Ingredients
  • ½ Head of cabbage quartered and cored
  • ¼ Head of Purple cabbage cored
  • 1 Medium red onion
  • 3 Carrots
  • ¼ Cup of sherry vinegar
  • 1 Cup of mayonnaise
  • 1 Package of powdered ranch dressing( I prefer Hidden Valley)
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
  1. Combine vinegar, sildenafil mayo and ranch packet.
  2. Chill covered for ½ hour
  3. While that sets, quarter and core cabbage
  4. Cut cabbage cross wise between and ⅛ to ¼ inch
  5. Chop red onion(you can substitute any onion if you don't like red)
  6. Peel and julienne the carrots into the same length as cabbage strips
  7. When sauce is done toss with vegetables
  8. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Notes
You can very the vinegar and ranch packet to your taste. Also I like to wait till I'm just about to serve before I add the sauce.

 

Coleslaw.  The term “coleslaw” arose in the eighteenth century as an Anglicisation of the Dutch term “koolsla”, a shortening of “koolsalade”, which means “cabbage salad”.  It was introduced to England from Ireland and was made at the end of the month from leftover vegetables and cream.

A word that says so much, and is so polarizing.  You either love it or hate it , either way, chances are you have a strong opinion about  it, and most likely your not alone.  I was on the fence for many years.  My only introduction as a kid had been KFC.  Not the best, pretty much the worst.  A watery, sweet and very ungreen version.  Not to mention it is cut so small it may as well be mush.  I have had others but they never really stuck with me.  As I got older it actually became something I loathed.  Sweet slaw was awful and no on seemed to get it right, the so called vinegar or savory slaws were either bad or just plain.  I started to change my tune on a vacation to NYC many years ago.  I was with a friend who insisted I have it on my burger.  “It’s what you do on the east coast.  It’s very New York”, she said.  And who doesn’t want to be like a New Yorker when on vacation?  It’s always fun to be taken as a local when traveling.  So with some reservation I put it on my soon to be ruined burger.  Or so I thought, but it didn’t.  It actually was good, the slaw was not sweet or overpowering.  Was it great, no.  But it opened me up to other possibilities.

Years later, I was working at a gourmet Olive Oil shop, when it really turned around for me.  Up until then it had been back to bad slaw and me being frustrated, but not enough to do anything about it yet.  As I worked at the olive oil  store I would bring home products to try and create recipes with.  Unfortunately not many of the recipes survived, I wasn’t good at writing them down for myself.  The customers really reaped the benefits as well as the company as they put out a cookbook of employee recipes.  But a few stayed around rattling in my head, and I had started cooking and experimenting again.  I had a wonderful roommate that was also game for experimenting and cooking.  Our house became the place to eat.  We often joked that our friends had radar and knew when we were cooking and managed to show up just in time to help us eat what we had made.  It was around this time that I had a strange new product, sherry vinegar,  it was smooth and potent at the same time.  It sat in our shelf for a while, not knowing what to do with it so we left it alone.  Our favorite was a walnut wine vinegar that was sending us over the moon and we put it in anything that would stand still.  Unfortunately the company discontinued that vinegar.  What was really disappointing was we used it in a coleslaw that had finally settled all my needs.  It was not sweet but full of flavor and just the right amount of creaminess, tartness and a little woody.   We had found/made a coleslaw that was good and even turned slaw haters like myself into slaw  lovers.  Disappointed and unsure of how to recreate this magical slaw, I reached for the sherry vinegar and said what the hell.  We added a little less and gradually added more to the same amount we had used before.  Low and behold it worked!!  Not only did it work, but became the vinegar for the coleslaw.  It turned a good slaw into an amazing hearty take charge slaw.  One that could really stand up to a good meaty steak or pork chop.  I’ve been making it to rave reviews ever since.   I used to joke that it was so good you could eat it with filet mignon.  While I don’t expect anyone to actually go out and buy a filet mignon and try my coleslaw with it, definitely make it to accompany a good piece of steak, pork or chicken the next time you bbq, or anytime you feel like it.

Summer Salads

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Pink Grapefruit Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Summer Salad
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8
 
Ingredients
  • 6 large pink grapefruits
  • 8 oz goat cheese
  • 1 package grape tomatoes(heirloom grape tomato's are best)
  • ½- 1 bunch of fresh mint or fresh basil(depending on size of bunch)
  • salt
  • fresh cracked pepper.
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • Drizzle of Balsamic vinegar
Instructions
  1. Cut grapefruit into quarters and cut away from rind.
  2. Cut the quarter pieces into slices that are about half an inch wide.
  3. Roughly chop mint or basil(each works well just depends on your mood).
  4. Combine grapefruit, sale mint/basil, tomatoes(cut these in half if too big),
  5. Salt and pepper.
  6. Drizzle oil and balsamic vinegar over mixture.
  7. Crumble goat cheese on top and serve immediately.

The dog days of summer are waning and BBQ week is technically over, but I couldn’t resist adding a few  more  posts about one of my favorite dishes, the summer salad.  There’s as many as there are days of summer but we will focus on 3 for this week.  We will feature a different one in each post.   I love so many of them, but one of my all time favorites I like to make, involves pink grapefruit and goat cheese.  Yes it’s easy to make, and takes almost no time to prepare.  So without further ado, Pink grapefruit salad.

Before & After, aka Appetizers & Desserts

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As we close out BBQ week we wanted to leave you with something else to nibble on.  What to do for before and after the main meal.  I am not a big sweets person so lets talk appetizers!!! I have many favorites that I like to make over and over again and thankfully so do my guests.  If you come over for a bbq chances are you will get one or more of these, remedy Deviled Eggs, store Pico De Gallo, viagra dosage Guacamole, or Ceviche.  These are my staple bqq appetizers, they are easy to make and disappear fast.   When it comes to cooking outside I like things that don’t take too much time, effort or heat up the apartment.     This is also a good time to bust out that Kimchi that’s sitting in the fridge or anything you have been saving in your canning  pantry.   For us we have Spicy Garlic, Chile Peppers, Indian Carrots, even Ketchup, which is a must if your having hamburgers or hot dogs.  There is also nothing wrong with cheese and crackers or veggies and dip.  One of my guilty pleasures is ranch dip and ruffles.  It’s the ultimate in lazy but it’s sooo good.  So you may not always have time to make stuffed tomatoes, pate, dumplings, or heat the fryer for chicken wings, that doesn’t mean you can’t make great easy appetizers for your guests.  But, every once in a while go crazy and challenge yourself, you and your guest will be glad you did.

Once you fed the troops all that savory goodness, it’s time to move onto desserts.  As I said before, I’m not much of a sweets person, but, homemade ice cream has started to win me over.  We made all kinds this last winter and into early summer.  Lemon Sherbet, Coffee, Pink Peppercorn and Vodka, Whiskey Molasses, Ginger and my personal favorite, Bacon and Vanilla, which went swimmingly with our canned Peaches.  Usually we are too stuffed to get to dessert to be perfectly honest, but homemade ice cream is something worth making room for.  In fact I haven’t even bought any ice cream since we started making it.  Our next venture will be Gin and Tonic Ice Cream and Popsicles, can’t wait!!  Stay tuned and we will tell you all about how they turned out.  And if your lucky we may even share the recipes.  Till next time, happy BBQ-ing!!

*remember if you want any recipe we talk about here or any post on the blog,  just ask and we will be glad to give it to you.*

Sides!

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visit this Indian Carrots & Bean Salad” src=”http://houseofzeta.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/P7210004-300×109.jpg” alt=”” width=”300″ height=”109″ />Sides.  Who doesn’t love a good side dish!?!  I’m talking about food, get your mind out of the gutter! although there are some human dishes that look good enough to eat!  To continue with our theme this week, we are going to talk about bbq side dishes.  Depending on our mood or if we are in a heat wave will determine if they will be hot, cold, one or the other or both.  There are times when I prefer them to the main and will sit down and fill my plate up.  We have made all kinds this year, corn salad, cole slaw, potato salad(3 different ways), grilled Indian carrots, curried corn, grilled veggies, sweet potato mash with smoked paprika, garlic mashed potatoes and on and on.  It’s amazing how much we will put into a meal and if your like us(chances are if your reading this you are) cooking is just a pleasurable as eating.  Sides can be a great way to entertain, our friends are always wanting to help us.  Sometimes their more important then the main dish.  Without them you would just have chicken or a steak or whatever meat your cooking.  The point is, a side dish can make a meal.  So while you slave away making the big rack of ribs, or that pork shoulder don’t forget your best friend the side dish, you and your guest will be more then grateful.  They may even want seconds!

BBQ

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Butterflied BBQ Chicken
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
Ingredients
  • 1 whole chicken
  • 2 tablespoons of butter(more if needed)
  • ½ teaspoon of your choice of herbs or spice(more if needed)
  • salt & pepper
Instructions
  1. Clean and rinse the chicken.
  2. Take kitchen shears and cut out back bone.
  3. Rinse again and pat dry.
  4. Discard back bone, site or put in freezer for stock.
  5. Discard giblets.
  6. Separate skin on breast side with finger.
  7. Just enough to put a small amount of butter between skin and meat.
  8. Make herb or spice compound.
  9. Butter should be soft but not too soft.
  10. Put compound in crevices you made in breasts.
  11. You can also put some under the thighs.
  12. Next, rub the rest on the outside skin of the bird.
  13. Salt and pepper the whole bird.
  14. Cook skin side down first for about 15-20 minutes, with lid on.
  15. Turn over, cook for 15 minutes with lid on, then 5 minutes with lid off.
  16. Chicken should fall apart when done an juices should run clear.
  17. Always make sure chicken is done before serving!!!

This week we will focus on BBQ’s.  Who doesn’t love sitting down to a meal cooked on a grill?  If you answered I don’t, then leave now and never return!  Seriously, I dream of cooking outside all winter.  Sometimes it’s the only thing that keeps me going.  That and the promise of going to the beach and swimming in the ocean, playing the ukulele or  camping on the beach, but that is a chapter all in itself.  This last weekend we did both, beach and BBQ.  Although not in the same day.  I did make my new favorite, chicken!!  I know it’s not that exciting, right?  It’s not what, but, how you cook it.  My new way is so easy and, impresses your guests.  I take a whole chicken and  cut out the back bone to make it butterflied.  Then I make an herbed butter or spice compound to season the chicken.   Cook on both sides for about 15-20 minutes each and it’s done!  See, wasn’t  that simple?  In around 45 minutes you have a great looking and tasting bird, you’ve impressed your friends and get to have drinks instead of spending all your time cooking.  Try it at the next bbq you have.

Getting Started

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This is the first official post of House of Zeta.com.  As we all know starting something new is both exciting and terrifying.  I have been tinkering and learning how to put this together for a couple months now.  It has been fun and frustrating. There’s nothing like trying something new to make you feel equal parts dumb and smart. I am not the most tech savvy person so I had my days when nothing sunk in(aka hitting my head against a brick/blank wall) and others where it suddenly went pop, more about I get it!  I’m still along way form being tech savvy, more about but at least now I understand the tech part, kinda.  In other words, this is a work in progress.   We have been posting our adventures on Facebook and some of these may look familiar.  I wanted to put up pictures that were familiar and add a little story.  There are many more to come so stay tuned!!!!  I hope you’ll enjoy what we are doing and will participate. We strongly encourage comments, recipes and stories of adventures, maybe even a picture.  This blog is designed for all to participate.  So without further ado, I bring you…………….the House of Zeta!!!!!

Last Winter

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This is the first official post of House of Zeta.com.  As we all know starting something new is both exciting and terrifying.  I have been tinkering and learning how to put this together for a couple months now.  It has been fun and frustrating. There’s nothing like trying something new to make you feel equal parts dumb and smart. I am not the most tech savvy person so I had my days when nothing sunk in(aka hitting my head against a brick/blank wall) and others where it suddenly went pop, ampoule I get it!  I’m still along way form being tech savvy, find but at least now I understand the tech part, here kinda.  In other words, this is a work in progress.   We have been posting our adventures on Facebook and some of these may look familiar.  I wanted to put up pictures that were familiar and add a little story.  There are many more to come so stay tuned!!!!  I hope you’ll enjoy what we are doing and will participate. We strongly encourage comments, recipes and stories of adventures, maybe even a picture.  This blog is designed for all to participate.  So without further ado, I bring you…………….the House of Zeta!!!!!

This last winter was again try something new.  So, salve
we made meat pies, online
pasta, viagra 60mg
stuffed bell peppers,  limoncello (so easy), Jason perfected his pizza dough and we canned everything we could.  We even made some  bacon ice cream, in winter, I know!  The year before was all about beer, and we are still drinking it(more on that in later post).  So this last winter we focused on many different things.  These pictures are some highlights of what we were up to.