Are you familiar with the book/movie, "Julie and Julie?" It is the true story about a woman named Julie Powell who decided to cook her way through all of Julia Child's, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, in one year. After each recipe, Julie blogged about the experience.
I think I need to do this with all of the recipes of Ree Drummond, aka Pioneer Woman. Lindsay and Ree....just like Julie and Julia. Or not. Some people wake up and read the newspaper with their morning coffee. I wake up and read Pioneer Woman with my coffee. We all have to have our priorities in this world. The thing about Ree's recipes is that they all look mouth-watering. The superb photography helps. She makes recipes look easy. She uses ingredients that I have never used. These things fascinate me. I know I am easily entertained, but I can't help it. So what would happen if me, a girl who frequently gets lost in life, tried to duplicate Ree's amazing recipes? Remember this one? It pretty much rocked my world.
Yesterday I tried to tackle her recipe for braised beef short ribs and creamy polenta. Let me preface this by saying that there were many unknowns (things that I have never used while cooking) in this recipe: fresh thyme, Dutch ovens, goat cheese, shallots, and wine to name a few. When I saw that I needed a dutch oven, that one really threw me. What the heck is a Dutch Oven? I thought that was when my brother farted under a blanket and trapped me underneath. So I had to improvise on that one....more on that later. I found all of the ingredients at Super Target except for the short ribs! I drove across town to Kroger to look for the ribs in the pouring rain mind you. They only had back ribs. I decided to go with that. It was already a miracle that my children made it through two stores, so I didn't want to push it. The recipe started simple enough...here are the lovely veggies.
Now for the torturous part. For whatever reason, that onion was the most potent onion I have ever chopped in my life. That's what I get for buying onions at Super Target. I was literally dying. My eyes were tearing and I felt like someone had poured acid right down my nasal passage. My turtleneck saved me. When that wasn't enough, I had to put on sunglasses. The things I go through...
Here is some pancetta frying in a pan. Oddly enough, I have cooked with pancetta before!
After I removed the pancetta for later, I added the veggies.
This looks like a mountain of goat cheese, but it was only 4 oz.
Here is her recipe for creamy polenta...if you're into that kind of thing.