It’s a cold, cloudy day in Canberra, with a maximum forecast temperature of eight degrees Celsius today. That’s 46 °F for any reader in the USA, Liberia, and Burma.
It felt like a good day to have the slow cooker on as well as the heating.
While grocery shopping this morning, I saw a nice lump of rump which looked like it would be perfect for this week’s meal planning.
I hope wherever you are, that you are warm and comfortable.
Have a good weekend.
Baby green peas
Empty a tin of lentils into the cooking vessel.
Lay the rump roast on the lentils.
Cut a potato in half and place it into the cooking vessel.
Cut the onion in half and put it into the cooking vessel.
Squirt a good glug of barbecue sauce into the cooking vessel.
Add a cup of beef stock to the cooking vessel.
Cook for eight hours.
Baby green peas
Cook the frozen peas with microwave radiation.
Prepare as per the instructions for use on the packaging.
Divide the rump into pieces for meal planning for the week. My plans include a pasta dish, some cold slices and salad for lunches, and perhaps a noodle soup.
Divide the lentils and keep some aside for dinner putting the rest into a container.
Slice a small piece of beef and put it onto a warmed dinner plate.
Serve a spoon of lentils and the potato onto the dinner plate.
Put the baby green peas onto the dinner plate.
Pour the gravy over the meat and vegetables.
Give thanks to the Lord for wages earned to buy food, cook food, and eat food to nourish my body and my enjoyment.
This week’s highlights in life
Work has been good. I remain blessed to work with amazing people.
It’s reassuring to see people in Canberra more aware of their health and safety and cognisant that the δ (delta) variant must be respected. This week, I read a paper that revealed that the viral load associated with the δ variant is about 1000 times greater than with the original virus recovered from the beginning of the pandemic. Without wanting to be morbidly crass, I’m in awe of the biology of SARS-COV-2 and the ability of this virus and the infection it causes (COVID-19) to change and adapt. I’m sure if I wasn’t in a sequestered, safe bubble, like Canberra, I’d be feeling more anxious and worried. ^
It’s been worrying seeing what has been happening in NSW, Victoria, and Queensland.
I started reading John Owen’s Overcoming Sin and Temptation. This book is a collection of three of Owen’s seminal works on the “Of the Mortification of Sin in Believers”, “Of Temptation: The Nature and Power of It”, and “The Nature, Power, Deceit, and Prevalency of Indwelling Sin”. It’s a challenging read in a couple of ways. Owen writes in an archaic style, and the subject matter penetrates deeply.
I’m also reading Tim Keller’s Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God. The two works are complementary, in my opinion.
I received a bunch of fresh free-range eggs from a friend this week. Fresh eggs are the best!
Have you enjoyed fresh free-range eggs? How do you like to cook them?
How have you been coping this week with the pandemic?
Are you in an area where the δ variant is circulating in your community?
What’s the weather like where you are at the moment? Let me know in the comments how you’re enjoying the weather (or not).
^The Bible App I use today presented me with Proverbs 12:25. (ESV)
“Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad.”
Saturday night dinner is sous vide eye fillet steak with potato gem poutine (provolone and smoked cheddar cheeses and gravy) plus mushrooms and crispy Brussels sprouts.
I was chatting with a friend today about my personality.
My personality scores
People who really know me won’t be surprised by how introverted I am. I live alone and for now, I’m happy about that. I enjoy my own company. I’ve lived a full life, I’ve been married, I’m divorced, I’ve learnt a lot about myself, what makes me happy, what upsets me, what unsettles me, and what I think I want for my future.
One thing I know about my future, is food will be a feature. Cooking and eating. Perhaps even growing some of my food. Growing up as a little boy, my maternal grandfather spent long periods of time living with us. Mum was pretty ill when she was pregnant with my youngest brother. She’d already had two very difficult births. My grandfather converted our backyard into a market garden. I don’t have a green thumb and the thought of gardening fills me with horror, but I do have fond memories of picking and eating fresh vegetables. Fresh fruit and vegetables taste so much better than what you get in a supermarket.
Faith will also feature more in my future. I’ve been in the wilderness for a long time and around this time last year, a friend started a good thing in my life. It’s been a year of revelation and self reflection and growth.
Eye fillet steak
Iodised salt (ground)
Black pepper (freshly cracked)
Oregano leaves (dried)
Potato gems (Tater tots in North America)
Provolone cheese (grated)
Smoked cheddar cheese (grated)
Gravox instant gravy
Remove the meat from the wrapping and season liberally with salt, pepper, and oregano leaves.
Vacuum seal in a food safe plastic bag.
Cook sous vide in a water bath at 54 °C for 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Remove the meat from the plastic bag and dry the meat with absorbent kitchen paper. Try to dry the surfaces as much as possible.
Take some mushrooms and roughly break them up with your fingers rather than slice them with a knife. You want a rustic rough look to them. Although, if you feel refined, you can slice them, I was feeling like being a bit rough and rustic tonight. Not that I’m ever refined and sophisticated 🤣
Heat a skillet (cast-iron if you have it) until it’s just smoking hot and add in a little beef dripping to smear the surface.
With long kitchen tongs, place the meat in the skillet and press down firmly for about ten seconds and repeat this with all surfaces of the meat.
After the first turn, add in some more beef dripping and butter and the mushrooms so while the meat is searing, the mushrooms are cooking and the butter is browning.
Remove the meat from the skillet and set it aside.
Spoon the mushrooms and sizzling dripping and butter over the steak.
Allow the meat to rest for 10 minutes.
Slice into just under 1 cm thick slices and hope the meat has a deep red blush to it.
Gary’s “Poutine” and Brussels sprouts
Grate the cheese fresh.
Slice the Brussels sprouts in half and toss in a mixing bowl.
Splash in some olive oil and season the Brussels sprouts liberally with salt and pepper.
Toss the Brussels sprouts with the oil and seasoning to ensure good even coverage.
Heat an oven to 250 °C and place frozen potato gems (tater tots) into a baking sheet (keep to one side) and on the other side add the Brussels sprouts.
Cook until the Brussels sprouts have become crispy.
Remove the Brussels sprouts and then top the potato gems with the grated cheese.
Cook until the cheese begins to brown. The potato gems should be crispy.
Make the gravy according to the packet instructions.
Use a spatula to scoop the cheesy potato gems onto a dinner plate.
Add the Brussels sprouts next to the potato gems.
Lay the slices of steak over the cheesy potato gems.
Place the mushrooms next to the meat and then spoon gravy over the meat, Brussels sprouts, and cheese potato gems.
Tonight was a very simple meal. I had an unpleasant experience this morning when two men tried to relieve me of my wallet while I was out walking. By the time I got home after work I didn’t feel like cooking much.
Frozen capsicum, corn, black beans, and peas
Unwrap the snags from the plastic wrapping.
Heat up a frypan.
Put the snags into the frypan.
Put the frozen vegetables into the frypan.
Put a lid on the frypan.
Cook for 20 minutes.
Put the Gravox™ powder in a mug and pour in boiling water and whisk until it is thick.
When the 20 minutes has elapsed, turn off the frypan, remove the lid and transfer everything to a shallow bowl.
Pour over the gravy.
Allow everything to cool a little and then devour.
A workmate bought me this vanilla slice today from the Curtin Bakery. She was being kind to me because of the incident earlier in the day. It certainly made my day. I have wonderful workmates. The vanilla slice was delightful. The custard was light and fluffy and yet not too sweet. It had a good vanilla flavour and unlike some bakery vanilla slices there wasn’t too much gelatine. The passionfruit icing was delicious and again, not too sweet and not too thick. The pastry was firm.