Friday, December 11, 2009

That's Not an Onion...

People who know us well know that my husband has an extreme dislike of onions. He calls them Satan's fruit. He won't touch them with a ten foot pole. His mother still makes recipes that call for onion and makes a special non-onion batch for him. So when I picked another Pioneer Woman recipe to try and review this week, I knew that it would be a risk to use what the recipe called for....shallots. This week is the first week I have ever used a shallot...and now I have used them twice! I had to think of a way to convince my husband that shallots are not of the same family as the white, red, and yellow onions that make his blood boil. Shallots are friendly. Just look at this little guy.The recipe last night was PW's Beef Stew with Mushrooms. I had most of the ingredients already because of the Braised Ribs from Tuesday, so I decided to devote this week to beef. Why not? I really enjoyed making the Beef Stew with Mushrooms. I wish I could have taken more pictures, but last night was one of those nights when the girls were on a tear...running around under foot in the kitchen and screaming. I could barely focus on the recipe, let alone take pictures. I did manage to take a picture of the stew meat, since pictures of dredged stew meat are in such demand.

Oh, and here's some lovely butter melting in the pot.

In my last post, I told you about my thrilling adventure when I bought the wine for the other recipe this week. I still had one and a half little tiny plastic bottles left, so I used them in the stew. I have told you before that PW is responsible for introducing me to the glories of fresh rosemary and thyme. Now I can also thank her for introducing me to the glory of cooking with red wine. After I sauteed the shallots and fresh garlic, I added red wine, beef consomme (another new one to me), and mushrooms. PW's recipe called for 1/2 cup of wine, but I think I used one cup. I couldn't help myself. The recipe also called for 3 cloves of garlic. Because of the chaos in my kitchen with the girls, I couldn't remember how much garlic I had chopped. There may have been three or four cloves by the end of this. You can never have too much garlic though, right? I wish I could inject smell into my blog because you wouldn't believe the smell of this stew cooking.

Piper was very clingy yesterday. She cried A LOT and wanted to be held A LOT. She was clinging to my leg and crying for the first half of this recipe. Then Avery whipped out the blue blanket and started pretending it was the ocean. Hooray for creativity! Piper thought this was fascinating and joined Avery in the "ocean" for a swim. I owe Avery for this distraction because I was about ready to lose it.

Avery decided that she would dive off the fireplace into the ocean. This was so funny that I had to stop and take a picture. When I was little, my brother, Michael and I used to play "sharks." We put a blanket on the floor and pretended that it was the ocean and there were sharks. If we fell off the couch onto the blanket, we would be eaten by the sharks. We ALWAYS fell off the couch. By the time my youngest brother, Daniel, was old enough to play "sharks" I had outgrown it. Sorry Daniel! I was delighted last night to see that Avery thought of a similar game all on her own. Here is my "diver." Please disregard the numerous stains on her pajamas. That would be green paint. I told you we were a creative bunch!
Okay, so here is the finished product. This is Matthew's bowl right before I served it. PW's recipe said to serve the stew on noodles. I decided to up the ante and make homeade noodles while the stew was simmering. Homeade noodles sound really I won't tell you how easy they actually are. I prefer to just dazzle you.
My sister-in-law texted me as I was finishing this recipe. She said that she got carded to buy Nyquil and that she didn't feel good. She refered to my fear of actually buying alcohol. I told her that if she were here, I would make her feel better with homeade noodles, which are her favorite. She said that was plain mean to taunt her with homeade noodles when she is too far away to eat them. She made me promise to save leftovers for her to have on Saturday when she visits. Beth, I hate to break this to you, but there will be no leftovers. I promise I will make it up to you over your Christmas break!!
My last picture to share with you probably won't dazzle you as much as homeade noodles. It proves that I am a messy cook! Check out the picture below of the recipe that I printed off PW's cooking site. By the end of the night, it had been written on and had multiple grease stains. If I were one of the Farm Chicks (who I adore), I would probably have a decorative binder with plastic coverings over my recipes that I have printed out. Since I am more of an unorganized, messy Chick, this is what the recipes look like after one use!

My final thought on Beef Stew with Mushrooms is about the sauce. Oh, the sauce. I could write a sonnet to this sauce, if I were odd like that. Wait a minute....I draw happy faces on shallots. I AM ODD. Anyway, the sauce was so delicious that I could have secretly drank it out of a very tall glass. I can't wait to have leftovers today for lunch.
Once again, Pioneer Woman's recipes just can't fail....unless you are a vegetarian. I have got to get her new cookbook!! If a loved one doesn't buy me one for Christmas, I am going to buy myself one. Let's just hope I can protect it from grease splatters.
Here is her recipe for Beef Stew with Mushrooms.
For my recipe for homeade noodles.....keep dreaming! That's a secret between my grandma and me!
Now for the super secret part of this message:
My husband ate two helpings of the stew and never ever noticed the shallots or any onion flavor. He won't know that there was an ingredient from the onion family until he reads this post, which could be months from now for all I know. It won't matter though because shallots are friendly, right? RIGHT.


Beth Terry Merchant said...

I just typed a BIG coment and lost it because of a text that came through. If I could speak I would call you. It wi have to wait till I get to a computer :(

T said...

I can handle it when their cooked to oblivion. It's when they are still crunchy that especially makes my stomach turn. It's like chewing on skin.

Beth Terry Merchant said...

So my BIG comment went something like this....You need your own cooking blog. Something like, "Suppertime with a Stay at Home Mom...Sorta". Since you do have a job. I can't wait to cook with you over Christmas. I'll probably make a pest of myself and plant myself at your door daily : ) I LOVE to cook and haven't been inspired in years because of people who never appreciated it.

Sarah does the blanket, swimming thing, too with my Van Gogh Starry Night blanket, but she dons her swimsuit & goggles ! Our silly girls....wonder where they get it from....GGpa, Gpa, Cousin Rex & Matthew come to mind.

I really can't wait for Christmas! I'm living through your house since mine is a mess. I still got my tree up before Mom & Sarah's Grammie ! Yeah me !

Beth Terry Merchant said...

As a hint to my brother onion phobia, Mom started using dried minced onions. I did the same with Jon. They work like a charm in cooked dishes !

Now that I'm done with your Christmas presents, I have so many better ideas! May have to wait till your bday!