T Nation

o/t cooking

This is o/t because I want to start a discussion about cooking for pleasure and enjoyment, rather than whippin’ up a big ol’ batch uh bodybuilder’s chili. So, those who cook for the taste of it (Ko, I’m looking at you, buddy), spill your beans.

I just made carmelized onion-mushroom-goat cheese ravioli, and instead of serving them with a sauce, I pan fried then for a minute after they boiled. Taste-y. And I had a steak.

Oooh, a favorite topic! You mean someone out there actually likes cooking for the fun of it?! One of my hobbies is trying to “better” favorite recipes. Manicotti is my latest victim. I found that three pieces make a decent serving size and also provide (roughly, from memory) 58gP/36gC/5gF when made with fat-free ricotta, romano, mozzerella and egg whites. Make it florentine and the mineral profile is beautiful.

I’m also a fan of homemade “refried” beans (don’t actually fry them at all and DAYUM they’re good), green chile and torts. When you make your own torts, you cut the fat content in less than half and they are fluffier and tastier than the store-bought versions. All together, these make for an incredible carb-refeed type meal with high, clean carbs, lots of fiber, decent protein and low fat.

Let’s see…what else… I make wicked enchiladas. And soups and stews (mmmm, homemade stock, mmmm)…

This is a regular item on our menu, and now on our brunch menu. Andrew Soltner came up with it along with my Chef for a special dinner when he was in town. Its one of my favorite ways to eat salmon.

Chinook salmon with a apple wood smoked bacon crust, spinach risotto and a sherry/brown butter/demi glace sauce.

Maybe not the healthiest way to get your EFAs, but who cares.

Holy shit, that sounds good…

It all sounds mmmmmmm good your making me hungry!

Great topic! My TV is stuck on Food Network.

I like experimenting with different ingredients and sauces (when I have a victim I can try my cooking out on, anyway)... but lately I've just been craving some good home cooking. I was planning on cooking up some fried chicken for a girl I'm dating, here's my recipe:

  1. Soak chicken in a seasoned brine for 24 hours.
  2. Dry chicken off the next day and soak it in buttermilk for 4-8 hours.
  3. Dredge in seasoned flour and fry it in lard.
  4. Serve that with a side of garlic-cheddar-rosemary mashed potatoes, gravy, and a big 'ole homemade biscuit. Ooooohhh yeah. :)

Forgot to close that tag. -Kim

ok, can you guys PLEASE post the exact recipes?

“apple wood smoked bacon crust”? I’m assuming that the bacon is smoked with apple wood, but how do you do the crust? Is the fish pan seared or grilled? Please advise. peace, spbm

1/2 lb Nueskes applewood smoked bacon (you can use your favorite, but this one is REALLY good)

2 cups whole milk (you could use fat free or 2%, but why bother)

3 to 4 sprigs fresh thyme

2 eggs

Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)

1 TB chopped Italian parsely

1 tsp each salt and pepper

In a saucepan, saute the bacon for about two minutes (you just want to sweat it a little). Add the milk and thyme sprigs. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for ten minutes, remove from heat, and remove thyme sprigs. Allow to cool a little, then put milk and bacon mixture in a food processor and process till smooth. Transfer to a mixing bowl, then with a spatula, mix in eggs, panko, parsley, salt and pepper. Spread the mixture over the piece of salmon. Brown it in a non-stick pan, with a little butter, then finish in a 350 degree oven.


NO posting about food unless you include recipes!!!!!

Here’s a good one I stole from some French guy. Its really good in the summer when you can get local tomatoes. Easy too.

4 yellow bio tomatoes of about 125 grams each

4 tablespoons of rice vinegar

1 table spoon of sugar

3 tablespoons of watersalt and freshly ground pepper

Cut the tomatoes in two. Squeeze, remove the seeds and keep the juice. Cut the tomato halves into two. Add water, sugar, vinegar, reserved tomato juice, salt and pepper. Allow to sit for one hour and then pur?e in a blender. Adjust seasoning, place in bowls. Drizzle with olive oil, either plain or infused with pimento or terragon.

That last thing I posted is a soup. SPBM.

I just had to resurrect this thread because I found the Holy Grail of jerk.

I’ve been looking for a good jerk seasoning in either a rub or marinade and have been sorely disappointed by each and every brand. So the other day I ran across a recipe for a marinade, gave it a shot and am hooked.

1 bunch scallions (green onions), trimmed

2 Scotch Bonnet chilis (I couldn’t find these so I substituted 3 tsp chili pequin)

1 large garlic clove

2 inch piece of peeled, chopped fresh ginger

1/2 tsp thyme leaves

1/2 tsp hot paprika

1/4 tsp ground allspice

4 dashes each ground cloves, cinnamon and pepper

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

3 tbsp lite soy sauce

Process all ingredients in your blender until smooth. Pour over 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts in a gallon size Ziploc bag. Refrigerate 24 hours. Grill. Gorge.

I made this last night with dry roasted red, yellow and green peppers for a side dish. I already had most of the ingredients but if you have to buy everything I’d guess that it would be about $30 (buying a bunch of spices at once can be a tad pricey but then you’d have them to use for other dishes). Preparation time was about 5 minutes to make the marinade, 24 hours in the fridge, 20 minutes on the grill (quicker if I had a Foreman) during which time I roasted the peppers. Nutrient breakdown for 1 boob and 1 1/2 cup peppers:

P = 33g

C = 17g

F = 2g


I cook partly for my living, so my training is always at risk - I have to constantly taste demi glaces, sauces, reductions, dressings, and other really great stuff that makes my diet scream. But, cook enough escolar, lamb shanks, or duck confit, and trust me, you begin to hate it anyway!

So, recipes - I do not cook healthy for fun - when I invest the time to prepare a meal, you know there is butter, kosher and sea salt, olive oil, and other goodies in it - so forgive me.

Here’s on of my favorites that I’ve been doing for a while:

Sage Stuffed Porkloin with Garlic and Gorgonzola Cream Sauce

Alright, get a nice pork loin, and butterfly slice it, and then cross hatch the insides with 1/2 inch deep cuts (make a cris-cross pattern).

rub entire roast with good, thick bodied olive oil.

Season inside and out with a light amount of sea salt and heavily with ground black pepper and ground white pepper.

In a food processor, combine a handful of sage leaves, roasted garlic (about 3 full heads worth), a little olive oil, and 4 whole shallots. Pulse until minced.

Slather this stuff inside the pork roast.

Next, the fun part - Take 3 lb of kosher salt and combine with water until you have a thick paste - the consistency of mud. Lay a baking sheet out and cover in foil - put down a 1 inch thick layer of the salt, lay your pork roast on top, and then build a shell around the roast with the salt - be careful to have the roast TIED UP REALLY TIGHT WITH COOKING TWINE so the salt doesn’t get inside where the stuffing is - just on the outside.

the entire roast should be covered in this shell - you can then wrap up the sides of the tin foil to form a wall around the roast.

Put in a 375 degree oven.

On the stovetop, combine 2 cups vegetable stock, 2 cups heavy cream, 1 head of roasted garlic, 1/2 lb of high quality gorgonzola, salt pepper, and a drop of sour cream into a pan. Heat on medium until slightly simmering - make sure not to curdle the cream - cook until reduced 1/4, and the sauce is nice and thick. Place in a blender, blend on high until 1 1/2 original volume. Put aside.

When pork reaches the temp you enjoy (use an internal meat thermometer, the crust should be brown and hard, separated from the roast by this point but not broken), take it out of the oven, let it cook for a few minutes, then crack the crust with your knife and discard - the pork should be well seasoned (not overly salty though), moist, and aromatic. Slice and place on serving platter. Reheat cream sauce if needed, whisk in 4 tablespoons of butter (mount the sauce), and place a small amount on each slice of pork.

Alright, you’ll have a heart attack from it, but it is very very tasty - eat with a thick crusted bread from your local bakery, to sop up the left over juices, and a glass of pinot noir.


Everything y’all have posted so far sounds awesome.

OK, I have to post this recipe I came up with. I recently baked one of these for a friend of mine's b-day and it turned out great.

Chocolate Guiness Cake

For cake
20oz dark brown sugar
8oz butter, unsalted
4 eggs, beaten
1 tbsp vanilla extract
12oz flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
12oz Guinness Extra Stout
8oz milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two 9" round cake pans.

In one bowl cream together brown sugar and butter. Mix in eggs and vanilla extract until smooth. In second bowl sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.

In a sauce pan combine Guinness and chocolate chips. Stir over medium heat until chips are completely dissolved, then remove immediately.

Alternately fold flour mixture and Guinness mixture into brown sugar mixture, 1/3 at a time, only until combined and smooth. Batter should be fairly loose. Divide batter evenly between buttered cake pans. Bake @ 350 degree for 35 minutes. Allow cakes to cool on a rack (but be sure they're still warm for the next 2 steps). Trim tops to make them flat.

For Guinness syrup
3oz Guinness Extra Stout
3oz dark brown sugar

In a sauce pan combine all ingredients. Stir over medium heat until sugar is completely dissolved. Brush mixture onto cakes to moisten.

For Guinness butter cream:
2oz Guinness Extra Stout
4oz dark brown sugar
4oz butter, unsalted, whipped

In a sauce pan combine Guinness and brown sugar. Stir over medium heat until sugar is completely dissolved. Allow mixture to cool. Fold Guinness mixture into butter; it helps if the ingredients are all cool, but if it's being stubborn just use a blender or a food processor. Spread onto top of one cake, then place second cake on top of first cake.

For ganache
8oz dark chocolate chips
8oz heavy whipping cream
1tbsp butter, unsalted

In a sauce pan combine all ingredients. Stir over medium heat until chocolate is melted. Place cakes on top of rack with pan underneath to catch ganache. While the ganache is still warm, pour it over the cakes until top and sides are covered. Refrigerate cake overnight to allow ganache and butter cream to set.

Drink remaining Guinness.

Holy Frickin’ Moly! I am by no means a chocolate freak but that cake sounds intense. A) Did you mean you came up with this recipe out of thin air for the fun of it?

B) Do you have to wait until the Guiness settles or do you want it to be frothy still?

C) I’ve used unsalted butter in recipes before and even though I added the requisite amount of salt, things still turned out blah. I subbed salted butter and kept the stipulated amount of salt the same and things came out wonderful. Can this be done here?

D) Will you marry me? j/k

My wife found me this for me after I complained about having to eat yogurt all the time. (I have a major Chocolate Jones)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bars

2 scoops GROW (or Protein powder of your choice)

Splash of vanilla

1 package of NutraSweet

4 Tablespoons of Natural Peanut Butter

4 Tablespoons of whipping Cream

1 1 oz square of unsweetened baking chocolate

2 tablespoons butter

Combine the first four ingredients in a small bowl and fold in the cream. You should come out with something that resembles peanut butter cookie dough. Press the dough into a 3 inch X 6 inch Tupperware container.

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter and 1 oz of unsweetened chocolate over a low heat. After it is melted remove from heat and blend in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 4 tablespoons of cream, and 7 packets of NutraSweet. Pour chocolate over the top of the peanut mixture and chill for a couple of hours. I really love this, hope you will too!

A) Definitely not out of thin air… It’s based on a basic cake recipe, but I’ve tweaked it quite a bit, and added Guinness of course :slight_smile: The butter cream and the ganache are my additions, too.

B) The Guinness kinda loses its froth when it’s in the sauce pan. It would be interesting to see how the cake turns out if you poured it straight into the batter - it would probably come out lighter.

C) I just use unsalted butter so I can control the salt content. But if salted better works better for you, then go for it.

D) LOL, don’t think my girlfriend would like that too much, but I’ll let you know if we ever break up :wink:

Hey look! M knows html. – Chicken Almondine—
Saute about a 2/3 cup of sliced almonds in 4tbsp butter, till just browned.
Remove almonds and set aside. Take 4 boned skinned chicken breasts and pound them flat. About a 1/4 " thick is good. Dredge chicken in flour, salt and pepper mixture and brown in butter. We are not trying to cook them through – just crisp the outside.
Now pour in a cup or so of white wine. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer for about 15 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken to a serving platter, and bring wine / butter mix to a boil. Dump the almonds back in. Let it thicken a bit, and then pour over chicken. Serve this with steamed veggies, with a little lemon juice on them. It makes a killer dinner, nice enough for company, but only takes about 45 minutes from start to finish. I promise, everyone you serve this to will be floored. It tastes great. And so healthy too!