So I haven’t been able to run yet. My Achilles tendon is still bothering me a little bit. Each day I’ve tested running a little, but have ultimately decided to not push it as I really don’t want to risk a more severe injury. I ran, oh, about 50 feet yesterday and felt like I could have went for an actual run, but there was still an acute pinching feeling above my heel. Today, at the gym, I bounced around putting substantial stress on the tendon, and although there was some pain, I feel like tomorrow I can do some light running. Wish me luck!
If I haven’t been running, what have I been up to? The answer is eating. Trader Joes has made me lazy, but I love cooking. This week I’ve taken the unexpected break as an excuse to cook…and eat. On Friday night over at my sisters we made cassoulet, Cassoulet is Southern French dish that hails from the Provence region. The main ingredients are farm-style sausages, tomatoes, and kidney beans. There are a variety of easy recipes out there, I suggest you find one that suits your taste the best. Ours called for Italian sausages, though if I were to make this again would choose something more gamey. Also, I can tell you from experience, if the recipe calls for a teaspoon of red paper flakes, cut that in half.
Call me a snob, but in my mind, generally if you’re not grilling steak, your insulting steak. With that being said, I don’t have a grill and have to make do. I grew up in a house where my father treated grilling like a religion, and like any follower of a faith, I have strayed. There was a time growing up we simply ate too much red meat. Call it teenage rebellion, about around age 16 I flirted with vegetarianism, essentially unsuccessful. If the grill on our porch was the temple, our dining room table was the inquisition, and I didn’t last long. Since then, I have consciously cut down on the amount of red meat that I eat, all for the best. I even went about a month a half recently on the vegetarian spectrum (can’t help it, love fish). But, let’s face it, sometimes you just can’t beat a good cut of meat. Last weekend I was walking around Coolidge Corner with my sister grabbing coffee, catching up, and getting a few errands done. I’ve often passed The Meat House with the intention of going in, but the terrible name kept me away. However, on this particular Saturday, they were grilling outside. On a chilly autumn afternoon, I cannot think of a better marketing tactic. We decided to stop in – glad we did. We wandered around for a little bit just sort of taking things in. They have a wide variety of high quality cuts, dry aged beef, homemade marinades, rare meats and game. The butcher behind the counter asked how we were doing, my sister answered well and that this was our first time there. He immediately said this was out lucky day as we were given samples of their signature steak tips in house marinade (can anyone explain to me Boston’s deal with steak tips? I’ve always wondered…). He then gave us a guided tour of everything in the place from the meat, to the cheese, to the regionally centric groceries, milk from a real milk man, craft beer – he was an incredible salesman and had us hooked. We bought some locally produced ravioli (asparagus and mozzarella) and sauce (wild mushroom) and I had a great dinner over their apartment. We fortunately were given three good sized steak tips, so I seared them up and served them as an individual appetizer that, if I owned a restaurant, would call the ‘individual meat plate’ and charge a moderately exhorbitant price. For steak tips, these were savory and nearly melted in your mouth – a difficult status to achieve on what you would usual consider and inferior cut. Simply put, they were delicious. So I went back and bought some more to prepare on my own. I bought a few red potatoes and broccoli/cauliflower. I scalloped the red potatoes and put them in the oven to bake for around 40 minutes. The broccoli and cauliflower I flash boiled quickly. For the steak tips, I did a simple seasoning of salt and cracked black pepper and cooked them in a skillet. When the potatoes were almost finished, I put crumbled blue cheese on top and highlighted the steak with aged asiago shreds.
I will say that the steak tips presentation is not an accurate representation for how delicious it was.
And thank you to Dave ‘Eyebrows’ Moore for his donation today! Showing true initiative, being a brother, and leading by example!