Sunday, March 29, 2009
BBQTop Sirloin steaks, roast potatoes, butternut squash soup, Queen of Tarts
BBQ season is near and my family and I love BBQs! During the warmer months, I probably cook 4 or 5 out of 7 dinners on the bbq. Everything from hamburgers, hotdogs to vegetables, seafood, beef, pork and chicken are marinated or not, and thrown onto the bbq. Yesterday's weather was the perfect call for firing it up again. OK, it was only about 12 C but warm considering the long winter that we had. It was a treat! We only had Lauren home, so I
A few weeks ago, during my shopping trip to Sam's Club for a last trip before they closed up shop in Canada, I bought a huge hunk of meat. It doesn't look too big in the picture but it was 13.5 lbs.! They were selling all their meats for about 40% off so I was lucky enough to find a whole top sirloin vacuumed packed so I didn't feel like I would have to cut it up within the next couple of days. It's not too expensive and it is nice and juicy when cut into large cubes. When I finally had time to portion the hunk of meat out, I had to decide what to do with it. This hunk of meat was well marbled and I knew that they were going to make good steaks because you can feel the "silkiness" (I don't know how else to describe it) when I was cutting it up, so I decided on about 10 steaks about 1.5" thick, and the rest divided into two batches of cubes for kebobs. Kebobs are marinated and placed in ziploc bags with all the air squeezed out and can be stored in the deep freezer for months. When you're ready to eat, defrost, skewer with veggies and cook on the BBQ. I just tightly wrap the unmarinated steaks in plastic wrap before placing them into a zip top bag squeezing out as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn. Top sirloin (AAA always) is my choice of meat for beef kebobs on the bbq. As for steaks, we enjoy ribeye or NY striploin.
Well, last night, we had some steak from the first batch of steaks, served with steamed broccoli, roasted sweet potatoes and russett potatoes, corn and a homemade butternut squash soup.
For the steaks, I just sprinkle my favourite Montreal Steak Spice (Clubhouse brand) and a bit of seasoning spice on both sides. Then on a preheated bbq, place steaks on and only turn once. You'll lose your juices and don't cut into them if you don't have to, to check for doneness. You will lose the juiciness if you do either. Mmmm!....It was done to perfection (medium rare in our household)!
Potatoes & Sweet Potatoes
2 whole sweet potatoes/yams
4 medium sized russett potatoes
granulated garlic or garlic powder
Peel potatoes (if preferred), wash and chop into large chunks. Place in a plastic bag or ziploc bag and add olive oil, Italian seasoning, granulated garlic or garlic powder , onion powder, steak spice and toss in bag. Empty bag onto a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 400F oven for about 30 minutes or golden brown, turning if you are not using stoneware pans. I prefer stoneware because it bakes evenly and no need to turn your items to crisp. It also stays hotter.
Butternut Squash Soup - So Simple, nutritious and delicious!
1 medium size fresh butternut squash, chopped into large chunks
2 cups chicken broth, add more broth is you prefer thinner soup
fresh ground pepper, to taste
1/4 cup half and half cream
With a sharp vegetable peeler, peel skin off squash, remove seeds and save for roasting or discard. Place on a plate and steam until soft, or a fork can easily pierce the flesh. Remove and place into a medium size pot. Add chicken broth and ground pepper to the cooked squash and with an immersion hand blender, blend until smooth. Using a masher doesn't break up the fibres in the squash for the smooth consistency. Bring mixture to a boil and remove from heat. Spoon into bowls and add about a tbsp. of cream before serving. Or cream can be added to the mixture in the pot.
Dessert were an assortment of delicious handmade 4" tarts from a shop in the west end of Toronto, Queen of Tarts from my cousin. The assortment of tarts were incredible. I think there were (from top left clockwise) Chocolate Mocha, Blueberry, Mango, Chocolate Raspberry, lemon curd cheesecake and center is a Turtle Tart.