A couple of weeks ago I went with a couple of friends on a fabulous road trip. We traveled to Lockwood, Missouri, to visit the Prairie Mercantile store. This store (Open Wednesday-Sunday.) sells t-shirts for $2. Sweatshirts for $5. and coats for $10.00, basically speaking. The sportswear is made locally that’s sold in National Parks throughout the USA. The store sells extras or those with ‘slight’ flaws. After this stop we visited a meat-market located around the corner and down the street! The cheese was great and so were the meats that were purchased. Then it was time for lunch. Two guests from Lockwood just happened to have been in my class the prior week. They suggested we drive 6-7 miles to Golden City to eat at the famous, ‘Cooky’s’ Café. Another wonderful treat was about to be delivered. That day alone there were around 21 pies to confuse our palates even more! Then there were the meats, raised from their own farm. This is a roundtrip I highly recommend. It’s about a 50 minute trip from Springfield, Missouri going West on I-44 and then highway 96, to 37 North, leading you into Golden City and then Lockwood. There are also a couple of other ways to journey, check your map or GPS. Have fun, and tell them I sent you!
Time to think about a new recipe for this springtime weather. My pepper steak recipe is written for the pressure cooker, however it can easily be prepared on the stove or in the oven. Extremely simple and actually quite healthy this is a nice main entrée with very little required to accompany the dish. A nice salad and bread will complete this main entrée. Dessert is always an option. Right now a quick blender pie sounds quite tasty.
This week I am once again pickling asparagus. Can you believe it was .99 a lb. this week at a local store? My assistant, Bonnie, and I have already done about 6 quarts and I think we’re off to do 6-8 more. I’m also preparing a couple bags for the freezer so I can make asparagus soup when the spirit hits.
I’m also in the cake baking business for the next two weeks as I prepare for graduation. We’re doing a dessert bar for our son, Phillip’s, graduation open house. Three of my cooking friends are also assisting me with a few goodies. Grandpa Jerry is even involved preparing a couple of banana cakes. Now all I have to do is bake the cakes and c l e a n.
I’ve also been inspired to write a recipe for sour cream rhubarb pie. I hope I get to make it soon because I am anxious. There are a few more recipes that have to come into fruition first. And I truly do not know what I’m serving for Easter this year. We are staying home, as we seldom have time together as a family. So far I know its scalloped potatoes, ham and probably pineapple casserole. That’s about all I know for sure. Oh yes, the ham will definitely be a Primrose or a Petit Jean Ham from Morrilton, Arkansas.
Like many I’m anxiously waiting to put out my annuals. Good thing they weren’t out this past weekend as we saw snow flurries and freezing rain! Have an absolutely stupendous week. It is OK to shut the door on a messy room and enjoy the people and wonderful things around us. Until next week, Simply yours, The Covered Dish. www.thecovereddish.com.
(For the pressure cooker)
1 lb. Fajita cut steak
(Various steak cuts including round steak, thinly cut across grain.)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire
4 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 large green peppers, sliced in long strips
1 medium onion, sliced in long strips
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, coarse if possible
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes, do not drain
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 cup warm water
1 tablespoon no sodium beef bouillon
2-3 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup cold water
In a large Ziploc bag place the beef, Worcestershire, soy sauce and canola oil. Massage meat into ingredients and allow to marinate at least 30 minutes. While meat marinates proceed in setting out remaining ingredients and prepping the pepper and onion.
After marinating place all bag ingredients into the bottom of the pressure cooker and sauté, over medium heat. Turn off heat and add the following: Peppers, onions, garlic, ginger, black pepper, red pepper, diced tomatoes and red wine vinegar. Dissolve beef bouillon into cup of warm water and then add to cooker. Stir gently.
Place pressure cooker lid on base and set at level #2. Set stove temperature between medium and medium high. It takes approximately 7-10 minutes for the cooker to get under pressure. Once you have achieved a constant ‘sizzle’, lower the stove temperature to low/medium low. Basically as low as possible to keep the ‘sizzle’ constant. Cook for 12-13 minutes. Turn off heat. Release the steam manually, on the top of the cooker, one level at a time. Should you choose, you may cook for less time and allow the steam to depressurize naturally.
After opening combine the cornstarch with the cold water and stir into the contents, to thicken slightly. You may turn the heat back up to thicken, if necessary.
Remember, The T-Fal, and most stove-top pressure cookers, cannot be operated with less than one cup of liquid, in a recipe.
Serve over long grain white rice or jasmine rice.