Tag Archives: Bobby Flay

Indoors or Out Enjoy Grilled NY Style Sausages with Balsamic Onion Sauce and Grilled Tomatoes

Not having a grill to use can be a detriment when I come across recipes that sound wonderful and would taste great. An electric grill just does not provide the same type of results and experience as a gas or charcoal grill, in my opinion, so when I see a grilling recipe I want to try I often try to adapt it to indoor cooking and use either a grill pan (much to the chagrin of my smoke alarm many times) or find a way to cook it in the oven. While the results may not be exactly the same for me, they can still get pretty close, or at least good enough for my purposes.. Such is the case of this recipe I saw from Bobby Flay for grilled New York-style sausages with a balsamic onion sauce and grilled tomatoes, a great alternative to the average hot dog on the grill. I am posting the grilling recipe that Bobby Flay uses even though I did everything indoors in cast iron pans or in the case of the sausages, in the oven.

Grilled NY Style Sausages with Balsamic Onion Sauce and Grilled Tomatoes

For the Balsamic Onion Sauce:

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 large Spanish onions, halved and thinly sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup ketchup
1 teaspoon hot sauce

For the Grilled Cherry Tomatoes with Basil:

1 pint cherry tomatoes, cored
1 tablespoon canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

For the Grilled Sausage:
4 hot Italian sausage links
4 sweet Italian sausage links
1 loaf seeded semolina bread, cut into thick slices

For the balsamic onions: Put the balsamic vinegar, oil, onions and some salt and pepper in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are very soft and soupy, about 15 minutes.

Stir in the chile powder and cinnamon and cook for 1 minute. Add the ketchup, 1/2 cup of water, the hot sauce, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper, and bring to a simmer. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes. Transfer the onions to a bowl and cool to room temperature before serving.

For the grilled tomatoes: Heat the grill for high direct and indirect heat. Put the tomatoes in a bowl and toss them with the canola oil and some salt and pepper. Transfer the tomatoes to a grill basket and grill over direct heat, tossing occasionally, until the tomatoes are slightly charred all over and softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer the tomatoes to a bowl, drizzle them with the olive oil, and crush them lightly with a fork. Toss the tomatoes with the basil, then set them aside.

For the sausage: Put the sausages over the direct heat and cook until they are slightly charred on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Move the sausages to the indirect heat, cover, and cook until they are just cooked through, about 10 minutes.

Transfer the sausage to a cutting board. Grill the bread over direct heat until it is lightly charred, about 15 seconds, then transfer the bread to a platter.

Slice the sausages about 1-inch thick. Top each slice of bread with some of the grilled tomatoes, a few slices of sausage and a dollop of the onion sauce.

As I stated, I made everything inside, using a cast iron skillet for the onion sauce, a grill pan for the tomatoes and the oven for the sausages. The onions were straightforward as I could follow the recipe. The tomatoes on the grill pan were cooked over low heat for about 4 minutes until they blistered and popped and then I took them off the pan and proceeded with the recipe. The sausages I baked in the oven for about 45 minutes in a 375 degree oven, half the time covered in foil and the other half without, allowing them to crisp up a bit. To me, this works out better than simply frying the sausages in a pan and you get better texture and pop. Overall, I loved the mix of the sausages with the tomatoes and the onion sauce. The onion sauce is the real winner, in my opinion, and we used it again on hamburgers and even as a topping on some pizza. It makes a great grilling alternative for you when you want something more than a hot dog or hamburger. I forgot to take a picture of the sausages, but I do have a picture of the onions and the tomatoes.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on September 9, 2014 in Cooking, Dinner, Grilling, Pork, Side Dishes, Vegetables


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Hold On to Summer with Tropical Slaw with Sweet and Sour Dressing

Even though everyone is back to work today and the kids are back to school this week around here, the weather has actually been a lot hotter the last few days than it has been all summer long. That makes you want to hold on to summer just a little bit longer and keep making some of those summer favorites that may not heat up the house and kitchen. Around here we have been having cold dinners the last few nights, including a sandwich night yesterday where I made some homemade potato salad and tried out a new coleslaw recipe that I found. This one is a very simple and refreshing recipe from Bobby Flay for a tropical slaw with a sweet and sour dressing so you can stay away from the typical mayo slaws and get something a little different to go with your meal.

Tropical Slaw with Sweet and Sour Dressing

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil

2 tablespoons sugar

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

12 ounces fresh pineapple, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 large, ripe mango, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1/2 head red cabbage, finely shredded

3 green onions, green and pale green parts only, thinly sliced

1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Combine the apple cider vinegar, canola or vegetable oil, sugar and the kosher salt and black pepper (to taste) in a bowl and whisk the ingredients until the sugar has dissolved.

Combine the pineapple, mango and red cabbage in a large bowl. Season them with salt and pepper to taste; add the dressing to the fruit and cabbage and toss everything to coat it well with the dressing. Add the green onions and the cilantro and toss the ingredients again. Cover the slaw and refrigerate it for at least 1 hour before serving.

This is a very simple and refreshing alternative to traditional coleslaw recipes. You get great flavor from the pineapple and it seems to go very well with the red cabbage, green onions and cilantro. The dressing is light but adds just the right flavor and acidity to the slaw itself. I didn’t have any mango on hand when I made this salad so it is not in the one I did and I think it still turned out fine, though a nice, ripe mango in there would add even more to the dish. I also used pre-packaged shredded red cabbage instead of shredding it myself to save myself a step. This side dish would work really well with just about any type of sandwich meal and I think it would go really well with a pork dish like pulled pork or even just to have with sausages, hamburgers or hot dogs. I’ll definitely make this one again.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!





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Sunday Breakfast with Alton & Bobby – Southern Biscuits and Sausage Gravy

I’ve had a craving for biscuits and gravy lately and yesterday stopped over at Adam’s Farms and got some of their homemade bulk breakfast sausage so I could make some this morning for our Sunday breakfast. Sunday breakfast is usually the only day during the week where Sean, Michelle and I get to eat breakfast together, so we try to make it something different and special each week. I was looking for something quick and easy to use for the sausage gravy and for the biscuits, but I wanted homemade biscuits, not the stuff you get out of the refrigerated can. I turned to Food Network and found a good biscuit recipe from Alton Brown for southern biscuits to go alongside of the sausage gravy recipe I got from Bobby Flay. Both are really easy to make so you can get a different taste for breakfast in no time at all.

Alton Brown’s Southern Biscuits

2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons shortening
1 cup buttermilk, chilled

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using your fingertips, rub the butter and shortening into the dry ingredients until the mixture looks like crumbs.Try to do this quickly so that the fat does not completely melt. Make a well in the center of the mixture and pour in the chilled buttermilk. Stir just until the dough comes together. The dough will be very sticky.

Turn the dough onto a floured surface, dust the top of the dough with flour and gently fold the dough over on itself 5 or 6 times. Press into a 1-inch thick round. Cut out the biscuits with a 2-inch cutter, being sure to push straight down through the dough. Place the biscuits on baking sheet so that they just touch. Reform the scrap dough, working it as little as possible and continue cutting. 

Bake until the biscuits are tall and light gold on top, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Bobby Flay’s Sausage Gravy and Biscuits

1 1/2 pounds bulk breakfast sausage or mixture of hot and mild bulk sausage
4 tablespoons flour
1/2 gallon milk
Biscuits, store-bought or homemade (see Alton Brown’s Southern Biscuit recipe above)

In a large pot, add the sausage and cook until it is browned and cooked through. Drain the grease and add the flour to the sausage. Cook the sausage in the flour over medium-high heat until the sausage is well-coated with the flour. Add the milk and stir until the gravy has the  desired thickness and add salt and pepper, to taste. Serve with the biscuits.

I did change up the sausage gravy recipe a little and did not use the 1/2 gallon of milk. I only use about 3/4 of a cup along with a 1/4 cup of heavy cream because we like a gravy that is much thicker for the sausage, and it turned out perfect. The real star here though is the biscuits. These are really easy to make, smell great and taste awesome. You could use these for all kinds of breakfast sandwiches that you like if you didn’t want the sausage gravy, like bacon, eggs, ham or anything else. They are also a great dinner biscuit and I plan to use the rest to go along with dinner tonight. You could even just have one warm with some butter to go with your tea or coffee in the morning and you would be all set.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on April 13, 2014 in Biscuits, Breads, Breakfast, Cooking, Gravy, Pork


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Get Your Hot Dogs Here! (And Some Good Toppings Too!)

I think the hot dog gets a pretty bad rap. Granted, it may not be the healthiest alternative when it comes to something to eat, but there are some hot dogs that just taste downright delicious. I can be pretty fussy about the brand of hot dog I have, but there is something about eating a hot dog at a cookout or barbecue that makes it so it doesn’t seem to matter that much what brand it may be. When I am at home, I personally prefer a Sabrett hot dog or a Nathan’s. The other requirement I have is that they need to be hot dogs with the skin on. There is something about biting into a hot dog and getting that snap that makes it just right. Anyway, I didn’t think there would be much in the way of recipes for hot dogs, and there may not be a lot of variations in the way you cook them, but there are countless toppings you can try. This recipe, from Bobby Flay, tries to make these hot dogs just like one you could get on the streets of New York with some great toppings.

New York Street Cart Dogs with Onion Sauce and Red Pepper Relish

Onion Sauce:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 large onions, halved and thinly sliced

2 teaspoons ancho chile powder

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup ketchup

1/4 teaspoon hot sauce

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Grilled Pepper Relish:

6 cloves roasted garlic, coarsely chopped

3 grilled red peppers, peeled, seeded and diced

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus leaves for garnish

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Grilled Hot Dogs:

8 all-beef kosher hot dogs

Vegetable oil

Freshly ground black pepper

Hot dog buns


For the onion sauce: heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chile powder and  cinnamon and cook for 1 minute. Add 1 cup of water, the ketchup, the hot sauce, salt and black pepper and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook until it is thickened and the onions are very soft, adding more water if needed, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature before serving.

For the grilled pepper relish: Combine the garlic, peppers, oil, red wine vinegar and parsley in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Cover and allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before serving.

For the hot dogs: heat a grill to high heat for direct grilling. Brush the hot dogs with oil and sprinkle them with pepper. Grill the hot dogs until slightly charred and golden brown on all sides, about 6 minutes. put the hot dogs in the buns and top with mustard, onion sauce and the grilled pepper relish.

I did make a few alterations to this recipe. First, we were having pretty heavy rain and thunderstorms yesterday, so there was no grilling involved at all for me. I roasted the peppers and garlic in the oven and made the relish indoors. It also meant cooking the hot dogs inside, but instead of frying them or boiling them, I like them steamed. You get a much better snap from the hot dogs when you steam them. Just put about an inch of water in a large saucepan and bring it to a boil. Then insert a steamer basket into the pan, put the hot dogs in the basket and allow them to steam for about 3 minutes. They come out much more like a hot dog cart hot dog than grilling, in my opinion. I also added some yellow and orange pepper into the pepper relish for more color and flavor.

The onion sauce really does take like the onion sauce you can buy in the stores or get from a vendor. It was sweet with a little heat and tasted great with the mustard. The same goes for the pepper relish. You can really taste the garlic in this one, so you may even want to cut back a bit on the garlic to get more pepper flavor.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. I just made the Tar Hell Pie in the latest issue of Cook’s Country magazine, so you can check back for that recipe tomorrow and see how it came out. Until next time, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on August 10, 2013 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, Grilling, Sauce, Side Dishes


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Simple Grilling to Beat the Heat: Grilled Sausages

It’s been really hot and humid here the last few days with no immediate end in sight, so that means finding dinner solutions that won’t overheat the whole house and make me a pile of sweat in the kitchen. it also means using the grill more and breaking the slow cooker out to do some cooking. For this particular meal, the grill came in handy for a very simple meal that I picked up from Bobby Flay on the Food Network. While this dish can work as a great party appetizer, we actually had it for dinner and it was quite filling.

Grilled Sausages with Grilled Shallot Relish with Ricotta and Toasted Baguette

1 pound Italian sweet sausage links

1/2 cup vegetable oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

5 large shallots

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons honey, plus more for drizzling

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme

Pinch red pepper flakes

1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 1/2 cups fresh ricotta cheese

2 baguettes, grilled

Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Heat a charcoal or gas grill to high for direct grilling. Brush the sausages with some of the vegetable oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and grill, with the cover closed, until golden brown, slightly charred and just cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove the sausages to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing,

While the sausages are grilling, halve the shallots, leaving the skin on, and toss with a few tablespoons each of the vegetable oil and balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put them on the grill and cook until charred and slightly softened. Cool the shallots slightly, then remove the skins and chop.

Heat the remaining vegetable oil in a saute pan on the grates of the grill until it begins to shimmer. Add the chopped shallots, remaining balsamic vinegar, honey, thyme and red pepper flakes and simmer, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and stir in the parsley.

Arrange the cut sausage on a platter with a bowl of the fresh ricotta cheese, the shallot relish and the toasted bread. Serve the bread topped with a dollop of the ricotta, a few pieces of sausage and a spoonful of the relish, drizzled with honey and olive oil. Serve warm or at room temperature.

This was a great meal or can make a great snack. We all loved the shallot relish and I can easily see using that on other dishes, either pork, beef or chicken. Even just having some of that alone on a piece of toasted baguette would be good for me. It was plenty filling with a simple side salad as a meal or as I said, I think it would make a great appetizer for a party as a buffet dish or for any barbecue. I would make this one again for sure.

That’s all I have for today. I do have some pork in the slow cooker today to make some slow cooker pulled pork sliders and a recipe for a no mayo coleslaw, so check back tomorrow for that one and see if you like it. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day, try to stay cool and enjoy your meal!

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Posted by on July 15, 2013 in Appetizers, Cooking, Dinner, Grilling, Pork, Side Dishes


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Fine Food for Father’s Day, Part 1 – Strip Steak with Brandied Mushrooms and Sweet Potatoes

Father’s Day dinner is always treat. Michelle and Sean get to do all the cooking and I get to pick out what I would like to have for dinner. I picked something simple this year since it was just the 3 of us. Michelle had picked up some New York strip steaks and we had some other things around the house that could make for a simple yet elegant meal. We thought about using the grill, but the weather was kind of iffy at the time we were eating dinner so we thought on the safe side we would just do it inside. The recipe for the steaks comes from Tyler Florence.

New York Strip Steak with Brandied Mushrooms and Fresh Thyme

4 New York strip steaks, each about 1 1/2 inches thick
Extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 pounds mushrooms, trimmed, brushed clean with the towel and stemmed
Leaves from 2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup brandy
1/2 cup heavy cream

Remove the steaks from the refrigerator and allow them to come to room temperature. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat until smoking. Sprinkle the steaks all over with salt and pepper. Put the steaks in the pan and cook, turning to brown all sides completely, until medium-rare, about 8 to 10 minutes depending on how thick the steaks are. Remove the steaks to a platter with tongs and cover loosely with a tent of aluminum foil to keep the meat warm while you make the sauce.

Put the sauté pan back over medium-high heat and add 1/4 cup olive oil. When the oil is smoking, add the mushrooms and cook, stirring, about 10 minutes, until golden brown. Add the thyme and the garlic, and season well with salt and pepper. Toss a few more times to cook the garlic, then dump the mushrooms out onto a platter. Take the pan off the heat, add the brandy, return the pan to the heat, and cook until almost evaporated. Add the cream and cook that down to 2 to 3 minutes until reduced by about one half and thickened. Return the mushrooms to the pan with whatever juices have collected on the platter and simmer the entire thing another 2 minutes until thickened again. Season with salt and pepper. Slice the steaks thin against the grain. Taste the sauce for salt and pepper and serve.

I loved the mushrooms sauce that came with the steaks. The steaks were cooked perfectly and the sauce added just the right amount of flavor with the mushrooms and the brandy. We did not have to pounds of mushrooms on hand, so we actually ended up about halving the recipe and cut down the amount of olive oil used to about 2 tablespoons and cut the brandy down to about 1/8 of a cup and the heavy cream to about one-fourth.

Besides making some corn on the cob to go with the steaks, we also used a recipe from Bobby Flay of the Food Network for grilled sweet potatoes with lime and cilantro. Even though we didn’t actually grill the potatoes, I think they still came out pretty nicely for indoor cooking. It’s very easy to make this recipe and takes next in no time at all.

Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Lime and Cilantro

3 sweet potatoes, unpeeled
Kosher salt
2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1/4 cup canola oil
Freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

To par-cook the potatoes, place the potatoes in a large pot of water and boil until fork tender, about 8 minutes. Allow the potatoes to cool completely. Slice each potato lengthwise into eighths.

Preheat the grill to medium or place a cast-iron grill pan over medium heat. Mix 1 tablespoon of salt, the lime zest and the cayenne pepper in a small bowl and set aside.

Brush the potato wedges with the oil and season well with salt and pepper. Grill the potatoes until they are golden brown on all sides (including the skin) and just cooked through, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer the potatoes to a platter and immediately season with the salt mixture and sprinkle with cilantro.

We simply made the potatoes in the cast-iron pan instead of dragging the grill pan out and I think they turned out just as well. Par-cooking them is really necessary here because you want to make sure the potatoes are going to be cooked all the way through when you make them this way. If you just put them in raw, they are not going to be done in one to 2 minutes and will burn. I really liked the mixture of the lime and the salt with the cayenne pepper; it really help to bring out the flavor of the potatoes and I actually used some of the salt on my piece of corn on the cob as well.

That’s all there is for today. Next time I will post the recipe Michelle used to make banana cream pie for dessert for Father’s Day. I can tell you it was pretty darn good and I really enjoyed it. Check back for that one as well as some of the recipes that I have done recently and plan to post on the blog. Until next time, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!002


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