Monday, February 14, 2011

CHARCUTEPALOOZA CHALLENGE 2, PART 3: THE RECIPES



FRIEND FRIED GRIT CAKES with BACON, BLUE CHEESE, and PECANS

We are lucky enough to have family friends who give us wonderful gifts of food, which we enjoy, then freeze and dole out later. This recipe is made of all things that those friends have given to us:

Per grit-cake: mix together ¾ c cooked grits,1egg,  and a pinch of salt. Mix in ½ T crumbled blue cheese.  Form into one large cake or two smaller ones, and dust with flour. Chill.
Toast a handful of chopped pecans in a frying pan and cook for a minute or two, until slightly browned. Remove from pan. Fry one strip of bacon in pan. Remove from pan and chop or crumble. In same pan over low heat cook grit cakes. Be sure to give it enough time to form a nice crust before you flip it. Cook until a nice crust has formed on both sides.

To serve, top with some chopped green onions, ½ T crumbled blue cheese, pecans, and bacon!



BACON AND MUSHROOM “HOT BROWN”

Per sandwich:
Soak ½ c dried wild and shitake mushrooms in 1 c warm water for 30 min. Remove tough stems from mushrooms and chop. Strain mushroom water and reserve.
Microwave 3 or 4 boiler onions, for about 3 minutes, and then peel them and cut in half (or you could just use chopped onions)
Cook 2 strips bacon. Remove from pan and drain. To that pan add a handful of sliced fresh mushrooms, and soaked dried mushrooms. When they begin to brown, add a splash of tamari or soy sauce (or a pinch of salt).
Make a b├ęchamel sauce: melt 1.5 T butter with 1 crushed garlic clove and blend in 1.5 T flour, add ¾ c warm milk and ¼ c strained reserved mushroom broth, and a small bay leaf.  Add Heat and cook, adding mushroom broth to thin it if it is too thick. Mix in a few tablespoons grated parmesan cheese.
Assemble your sandwich in an ovenproof dish: put down a slice of toast, cover with the mushrooms, and then the bacon. Sprinkle with fresh thyme. Cover with b├ęchamel and top with 2 T grated parmesan cheese. Run under broiler until bubbly.

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