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Tuesday, December 19, 2023

December Supper Club - at Cut's Steakhouse

 We dine out in December, and this year we chose Cut's Steakhouse.  It was a very fun evening as usual with great food, conversation and fun.



HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Monday, October 2, 2023

OCTOBER SUPPER CLUB: DENISE AND GREG'S


 

This month's Supper Club is at Denise and Greg's!  They're going with an Oktoberfest theme.

Here's the menu:

LIPTAUER CHEESE SPREAD AND SOFT PRETZELS and crackers with German mustard (Cate)
GRILLED BEER BRATS AND SAUERKRAUT (Denise)
SWEET AND SOUR RED CABBAGE (Denise)
GERMAN CUCUMBER SALAD (Denise)
GERMAN POTATO SALAD (Wendy)

GERMAN CHOCOLATE BROWNIES (Leslie)

GERMAN BEER, WINES 
LIPTAUER CHEESE SPREAD
(Adapted from The Foreign Fork)


I doubled this recipe for our Supper Club get-together.
8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
4 TBSP unsalted butter, room temperature
½ TBSP Dijon mustard
1 TBSP capers
1 tsp caraway seeds
2 TBSP white onion, minced
2 green onions, chopped
½ TBSP paprika
½ tsp salt
⅛ tsp black pepper

Use an electric mixer to beat 8 oz cream cheese and 4 TBSP butter together until creamy.
Mix in the rest of the ingredients. 

Sprinkle with paprika.

Enjoy with pretzels, vegetables, and/or crackers!  Better if made a few hours or day in advance to allow the flavors to marry.

GRILLED BEER BRATS AND SAUERKRAUT
(Adapted from thehungrybluebird.com)

½ cup unsalted butter 
12 oz beer (pale ale, lager or summer seasonal beer)
1 cup coarsely chopped yellow onion
2 sweet banana peppers, seeded and coarsely chopped or green bell pepper
2 lbs sauerkraut, drained
12 brats
12 bakery buns, hoagie-style or pretzel style, optional
Dusseldorf mustard or other mustard

Prepare grill, either gas or charcoal. If charcoal, set up coals to one side.
Melt 1 stick of butter in a disposable aluminum pan (at least 2 quart capacity, preferably 10-by-13-by-3 inch). Add beer, onions, peppers and sauerkraut; mix well. Place the pan on the cool side of grill.
Place the brats on grill and sear on all sides, being careful not to pierce the casings. When they're seared and have good grill marks, transfer to sauerkraut mixture in aluminum pan; nestling each brat down into mixture and covering with the sauerkraut.
Cover the pan tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil, close lid, and cook for 40 - 45 minutes. Remove from grill and serve: either plated or on buns, with mustard and sauerkraut piled on.

SWEET AND SOUR RED CABBAGE
(Adapted from Cheerful Cook)

3 TBSP butter
1 medium sweet onion diced
2 green apples diced
1 med head red cabbage shredded
3 TBSP sugar
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
⅓ cup red wine

Spices
1 TBSP sage fresh, sliced or dry sage (1 teaspoon)
1 whole bay leaf
3 whole cloves

Use a large pot (or Dutch Oven) and melt butter over medium-high heat. Once melted add onions, apples, and sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low and sauté for 6-7 minutes.
Add shredded cabbage. Immediately pour in apple cider vinegar and red wine. This will ensure the color of the cabbage remains rich and vibrant.
Add sage, bay leaf, and cloves. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 30-35 minutes stirring occasionally until the cabbage is tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

GERMAN CUCUMBER SALAD 

2 English cucumbers
1 tsp salt
1 small yellow onion
1/3 cup fresh dill, chopped
3 TBSP vegetable oil
1 TBSP vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1/3 cup sour cream
salt and pepper, to taste

Wash the cucumbers and peel, if desired (we usually don’t peel the cucumbers when making the recipe). Thinly slice the cucumbers using a mandolin or the slicing side of a four-sided box grater. Add the cucumber slices to a bowl.
Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of salt over the cucumbers and let them sit for 20 minutes. This will remove excess moisture. After the 20 minutes, give the cucumber a squeeze to remove even more water. Be sure to drain any excess liquid from the bowl.
While you’re waiting for the cucumber slices, wash, dry, and finely chop the dill. Make sure to remove the hard stems first. Also, peel and finely chop a small onion. Add both (dill and onion) to the cucumber bowl after the 20 minutes are up and you have drained the liquid.
Add the oil, vinegar, sour cream, sugar, and pepper to the bowl. Mix well. Add more salt (be careful here since you added quite a bit of salt earlier!) and/or pepper if desired.

GERMAN POTATO SALAD
(Adapted from afarmgirlsdabbles.com)

2 lbs medium-sized red potatoes
1 TBSP + 1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided
1 lb thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/2" pieces
1 large yellow onion, diced
3 large cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 TBSP whole-grain mustard (use a bit more if you really like mustard)
1 TBSP Dijon mustard
3 TBSP sugar
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Cut any larger potatoes in half so that all potatoes are approximately the same size. Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water by 1". Bring to a boil and stir in 1 tablespoon of the salt. Reduce heat to medium, so the water is just gently bubbling. Cook potatoes until they are easily pierced with a fork, about 10 to 15 minutes. Immediately drain the water so they don't overcook. Leaving the potatoes in the pot, return the pot to the still-hot burner. With the lid off, let the potatoes steam-dry for a few minutes. Then remove to a cutting board. When cool enough to handle, cut potatoes into 3/4-inch sized pieces (leave the skins on).
In a large skillet with tall sides, fry the bacon pieces over medium heat until chewy-crisp. With a slotted spoon, transfer cooked bacon to a plate.
Return skillet with bacon grease to the stove top, over medium heat. Add onion and stir to coat. Cook for about 4 minutes, or until onion is nicely softened, stirring regularly. If onion starts to brown, turn heat down a little bit and continue cooking until softened. Stir in garlic and cook 1 minute more.
Remove skillet from heat and stir in whole grain mustard, Dijon mustard, sugar, salt, and pepper. Then slowly pour in the vinegar and stir to combine. Return skillet to medium heat and bring mixture to a simmer. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove skillet from heat and add potatoes. Fold the potatoes until nearly all the dressing is absorbed. Then fold in the bacon. Add remaining 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt (use more or less, to taste) and parsley, and fold again.
Sprinkle with additional freshly ground black pepper, if desired. Serve straight from the pan or transfer the salad to a serving bowl. This dish is known for being served warm or at room temperature, but can also be served chilled.

DESSERT - GERMAN CHOCOLATE BROWNIES
(Adapted from Celebrating Sweets)


Brownies:
½ cup unsalted butter, melted and still warm
¾ cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 TBSP water
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
½ cup powdered sugar
¾ cup flour
¼ tsp salt
½ cup chocolate chips

Topping:
⅔ cup evaporated milk
⅔ cup brown sugar, packed
2 large egg yolks
5 TBSP unsalted butter, cut into pieces
a couple pinches of salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
⅔ cup finely chopped pecans
1⅔ cups sweetened shredded coconut
flaky sea salt, optional, for topping

Brownies:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9×9 square pan with foil or parchment paper, leaving a couple inches of overhang on two sides (this will allow you to lift the whole tray of brownies out of the pan for easy removal). Lightly grease the foil/parchment.
Whisk the melted butter and sugar vigorously for one minute. Add eggs, water, and vanilla extract, whisking again for about 30 seconds. Tap all the excess batter off the whisk and remove the whisk from the bowl.
Sprinkle cocoa powder, powdered sugar, flour, and salt over the wet ingredients. Use a rubber/silicone spatula or wooden spoon to stir the mixture until it is glossy and well combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 18-20, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out without raw batter on it, moist fudgy crumbs are OK. Be careful not to over bake. Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack. Once the brownies have cooled, proceed with the topping.

Topping:
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine evaporated milk, brown sugar, egg yolks, butter, and salt. Slowly bring to a gentle simmer, whisking constantly (make sure you're getting all around the pan). Once simmering, simmer for about 3-4 minutes, whisking frequently, until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture has thickened a bit. Remove from the heat and stir in vanilla, pecans, and coconut.
Spoon onto the brownies and carefully spread the topping into an even layer. Top with flaky sea salt, if desired. Allow the topping to firm up a bit before cutting.

A few pics from the evening:
























NEXT UP:

Hard to believe but our next get-together will be Christmas time!  We take off from cooking in December, so we'll meet at a restaurant to enjoy food and fellowship to end 2023.

Cheers to many more good times together 
with great friends!
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