Stuffed Poblano’s With Red Sauce

I don’t know what’s wrong with restaurants these days but I am so tired of paying for bland mediocre food. Twice now we went to a Mexican restaurant where I ordered what was supposed to be authentOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAic Mexican food… first time I ordered a Chili Relleno and got a cold burnt poblano with a burnt red sauce that cost me over $10. The second time I ordered and trio of enchiladas with various filings and sauces, what I got was a soggy bland enchilada that tasted the same no matter what type of sauce or filling I ordered.

The sad thing is both of the places came highly recommended! So either I have become a food snob or people just stopped appreciating truly good food.

So to get past my rant, I was in the mood for some good Mexican food and decided to make my version of a fried stuffed poblano. Let’s just say despite the extra work, it was much better than anything I have gotten in a Mexican restaurant in a while and I live in Arizona……….SAD!

Check out www.cookingwithcaveman.com for more recipes and info

What you will need:

  • 4 Poblano peppers
  • 2 Cups red sauce (store bought or see recipe below)
  • 3-4 cups chicken mixture (see below)
  • 3 eggs beaten
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • Frying Oil (peanut or other high temp oil)
  • EVOO
  • Salt and Pepper

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Red Sauce

  • 6 Dried Ancho peppers, stems cut (I use dried peppers because they store in the pantry for along time)
  • 10 Dried Arbol peppers, stems cut
  • ½ White onion chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 2 tbsp. vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 ½ cups of the water from rehydrating the peppers

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Filling

  • 1 Cooked chicken breast (grilled or baked with Mexican spices)
  • ½ white onion chopped
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 can black beans with liquid
  • 1 tbsp. dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp. cumin
  • 8 oz. Monterey Jack cheese shredded

 PrepOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Heat up your grill to medium high heat. (you can substitute the grill for the broiler if needed) While you are heating up the grill lightly coat the poblano’s with EVOO and season your chicken. Once the grill is good and hot place the poblano’s and the chicken on the grill.

Caveman Tip*** You are just looking to soften the poblano peppers on the grill and give them a little char without burning them, you want to give them that grilled flavor and get the skin loose so you can remove it.

Red Sauce Prep

Caveman Tip*** I like to put my dried peppers on the grill for a few minutes before I soak them in water, gives them a little extra smokiness.

After the dried peppers are toasted you will need to soak them covered in hot water at least 20-30 minutes to re-constitute them.Place your hydrated peppers and the remainder of the red sauce ingredients into a blender or food processer and blend until smooth. Put the sauce into a small pan and simmer under medium heat.

Caveman Tip*** I wanted the sauce to reduce, that way it would concentrate those flavors give it a thicker consistency and that little bit of pop. That’s up to you, just taste it, add S&P or more vinegar to your liking, but I would recommend that you reduce it. Then just let it sit on the stove keeping it warm unit you are ready to use it.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Stuffed Poblano Prep

Once the peppers are soft and the skin starts to fall off pull them from the grill and let them cool. Continue to cook the chicken until its done and pull it off the grill. Just let it rest long enough so that you can shred it without burning your fingers.Once the poblano’s have cooled peel the skin off and then cut a small slit in the side of the pepper. Reach in and pull out the seeds.

Cook

Take your onions and mushrooms for the filling and sauté with some EVOO under medium heat; don’t forget to add a little salt and pepper. Once they are soft add the remainder of the filing ingredients and cook under medium heat until warm. Let it simmer for about 10 minutes giving the spices time to incorporate into the mixture and the chicken time to absorb some of that black bean flavor.

While your mixture is cooking get a pan heated up with your frying oil. You only need about 2 inches of oil at the bottom of the pan. If you have a candy thermometer it works best, you want to get your oil up to about 350 degrees. There are other tricks if you don’t have a thermometer using the base of a wooden spoon. Just give it a Google search and it will come up.

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Stuff the poblano’s with the mixture I use cheese them chicken mixture and them cheese again. Don’t over stuff them just enough so you can still close them. Next you will want to roll them in the egg wash and then liberally coat them with the panko bread crumbs.

Now, carefully lay them in the oil and roll them so that they fry on all the edges. You will want to dry them on a paper towel and then serve immediately with your red sauce.

It’s a bit much for a weeknight recipe but definitely worth the work! This dish goes great with my Spanish Rice

Lazy Day BBQ Pork Ribs

I love smoked ribs or BBQ ribs, it’s just always a Caveman staple, but they can be a little work, especially if you want them to turn out tender and fall off the bone. I got a little lazy last weekend, we were out at a local street fair and when I got home I just didn’t feel like putting in the work so I decided to braise the ribs, kind of a set it and forget it, for those of you who know what I am talking about. It’s a great way to really get those ribs tender and impose some flavors into them.

Braising alone just wouldn’t cut it for this caveman, I still had to fire up the grill so after they were braised I slathered on a BBQ sauce and gave them a nice crust before serving them. I all this my lazy ribs.

Hope you enjoy!

Check out www.cookingwithcaveman.com for more recipes and info

Braised Ribs 1

What you will need:

  • 2 racks of St Louis Style pork ribs
  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 4 cups orange juice
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 limes juiced
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 4 cups BBQ sauce (sweet and spicy BBQ sauce below)
  • Salt and pepper

Braising LiquidBBQ sauce

  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 4 cups orange juice
  • I cup brown sugar
  • 2 limes juiced
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 sprigs thyme

Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce

  • 2 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tbsp. white pepper
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup yellow mustard
  • ¼ cup brown sugarOblong_disposable_aluminum_Foil_Pan[1]
  • 1 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice
  • 3 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup Mae Ploy Sweet Chili Sauce

 Prep

Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce: Combine all the ingredients in to a small sauce pan and then heat under low until warm and well blended. Give it a taste and if it’s what you are looking for let it sit until you are ready.

Cook

I like to use those disposable aluminum pans for this part of it, easy to use and no cleaning involved. If you have a braising pan more power to you.

Preheat your oven to 350°F

Remove the silverskin from the ribs, this is important so that the flavors can penetrate the meat and reduce the chances of it being tough. To see how check out my blog on Memphis ribs

Combine all the braising ingredients in a pan with the ribs and cover them. Put them in the oven and let them cook for about 3-4 hours.

Caveman Tip*** If you let them go too long in the oven they will just shred as you pull them from the pan and you will not be able to put them on the grill for that great BBQ flavor.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Preheat your grill: I like to turn all the burners on high and get that grill smoking hot. You want to crisp up the outside not cook the ribs.

Caveman Tip*** You can obtain that same crust on the outside of the ribs by using your broiler if you don’t want to use the BBQ.

Check the ribs, they should be nice and tender but not disintegrate when you pull them from the pan. At this point you will want to let them slightly cool on the outside so you can handle them. Pat them dry with a paper towel and then liberally coat them with the BBQ sauce.

Once your BBQ is good and hot, put them on the grill for a minute or two per side until you get that caramelization from the BBQ sauce and you are ready to go.

Slice them up and enjoy.

Lamb Chops Take 2

I originally made this dish after a food truck festival one evening. We were there with some friends and as we were leaving everyone decided to come by our house for some food, which is pretty common for us. So I stopped by the local Fresh & Easy looking for a Tri-Tip or something that could feed 5 people. Fresh & Easy isn’t well known for their choice of meat so I wasn’t surprised that they didn’t have a tri-tip.  I contemplated getting steaks but then I saw the lamb chops and thought fun, let’s give that a try.

From what I remember the lamb chops were awesome, but I will admit, after a day and evening of drinking I really didn’t remember the entire recipe, nor did I get any pictures. So this is my grilled lamb chops take two.

Hope you enjoy!

Check out www.cookingwithcaveman.com for more recipes and info

What you will need:

  • 2 Racks of lamb chops
  • 3 Cups red wine & pomegranate juice for the wonderful marinade (see below)
  • 1 Cup Caveman Chimichurri sauce (optional)
  • Salt and Pepper

Marinade

  •  2 Cups red wineOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • 1 Cup pomegranate juice
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp. minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. fresh cracked pepper

Caveman Chimichurri

  • 1 bunch flat leaf parsley
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • ½ – ¾ cup EVOO
  • 3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp. yellow mustard
  • 2 tbsp. horseradish sauce

Prep

Marinade: Combine all the ingredients with the lamb chops into a zip lock bag, seal tightly, removing as much air as possible from the bag, and let it sit in the fridge for 1-3 hours

Caveman Chimichurri: Combine the first 6 ingredients (all but the yellow mustard and horseradish) into the food processor and pulse several times until well blended. You may need to add a little more EVOO while blending; I like my mixture to be a little loose as it will be a coating for the chops and not finishing as a sauce. After the mixture is well blended, put into a small bowl and mix in the yellow mustard and horseradish sauce. I do this at the end so I can regulate how much I add in, and make it to my liking.

Cook

Preheat your grill: First make sure you clean the grates and then oil so that the chops will not stick. Turn your grill up to full heat; close the lid and let it get hot for about 10 minutes.

While your grill is getting hot pull the lamb out of the marinade and pat it dry. Coat it liberally with the chimichurri sauce and let it sit out until your grill is ready. You want your meat to get close to rlrst_rack_z[1]oom temp; this will help cook it more evenly.

Caveman Tip*** Grilling won’t take long because you really want to serve lamb rare or medium rare. I prefer medium rare over rare because I like my meat to be warm in the middle and not cold. I strongly recommend getting an instant read thermometer – they are pretty cheap and you will always get your meats the right temp.

When your grill is ready (good and hot) put on the chops. To get a good sear, I let them go 3-5 minutes on each side and then even the ends for a few minutes each. Just keep an eye on them as I said it will not take long. Once you get a good sear on each side, check the temp in the center of the chops, you’re looking for 135°F for medium rare. If you prefer different temperature, you be the judge. If you need to cook them a little longer just use the top rack of the grill or put them off the heat and finish cooking.

Let the chops rest for 10 minutes or so covered and then slice and serve them with your favorite sides.

Enjoy!

Home Alone BBQ Pork Chop

This week the cavewoman is out of town for work so looks like I am cooking for one this week. Usually this means I tend to be less healthy since I am only cooking for myself but now that the holidays are over we are trying to cut back and drop some of winter weight. With the healthy frame of mind, for tonight at least, I thought about a quick and easy BBQ pork chop dish with a bitter green salad and asparagus. It turned out pretty well the sweetness from the pork balanced well with the bitter greens, and I was able to use pull double duty on the pork marinade as a salad dressing.  For other recipes like this visit www.cookingwithcaveman.com

What you will need: O

  • 2 Center Cut Pork Chops
  • 1 Cup Italian dressing (recipe below or use store bought)
  • 2 Cups BBQ sauce (recipe below or use store bought)
  • Salt and Pepper

Pork Marinade

  • 1 Cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 Cup of olive oil
  • ½ tbls. garlic powder
  • ½ tbls. onion powder
  • ½ tbls. honey or white sugar
  • 1 tbls. dried oregano
  • ½ tbls. ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. dried thyme
  • ½ tsp. dried basil
  • ½ tsp. dried parsley
  • 1 tablespoons salt

Quick BBQ Sauce

  • 1 cup ketchupBraungerPorkChops1[1]
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tbls. Molasses
  • 1 tbls. Yellow mustard
  • 1 tbls. Chicken broth
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbls. Sriracha (or your favorite hot sauce)

 

Prep

BBQ Sauce: Combine all the ingredients into a small sauce pan and heat on low for 5-10 minutes until the ingredients are well blended. Let it cool until you are ready to use.

Pork Marinade (Italian Dressing): Combine all the ingredients and mix well. Use half for the marinade and reserve the other half for the salad by covering well and storing in the fridge.

Caveman Tip*** `While you are prepping dinner and getting things ready or just puttering around the house doing chores just drop the pork in a zip lock back with the marinade and let it sit in the fridge until you are ready to cook, I like to let it go 45 to 60 minutes

Preheat your grill: First make sure you clean the grates and then oil so that the chops will not stick. Turn your grill up to full temp, close the lid and let it get hot for about 10 minutes.O

While your grill is getting hot pull the pork out of the marinade and pat it dry. Now liberally coat it with the BBQ sauce and let it sit until your grill is ready.

When you grill is good and hot, the temp gage should read 700 degrees or better, place your pork on the grill directly over the heat source. Close the lid and let the pork site for 2 minutes and then turn them 90 degrees and close the lid again. This should leave those great grill marks you are looking for. After 2 more minutes flip the chops over close the lid and let them sit on the grill for 2 minutes. After the two minutes is up rotate them 90 degrees and close the lid. You will want them to sit another (you guessed it) 2 minutes.

At this point you will want to temp your chops depending on the thickness they may be done. You are looking for 145 degrees. If they are ready pull them and let them rest, if not put them on the top rack and turn your burners to low. You will continue to cook until you reach 145 degrees, it should not take long.

Let the chops rest for 5 minutes or so and serve them with your favorite sides. I just so happened to make a bitter salad and asparagus.

Enjoy!

Memphis Style Ribs

 

 

 

 

 

 

RIBS

  • I prefer St Louis Style Pork Ribs because all of the fat and excess has been trimmed
  • The purpose of the Memphis rib rub is to give the ribs flavor without coating them in sauce.  By coating the ribs in a rub and letting them rest overnight – the strong flavors can penetrate the meat – making it a mouth-watering experience your friends & family will never forget!

 

Now let’s build the rub…

MEMPHIS RIB RUB

  • 6 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 3 tbsp powered garlic
  • 3 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tbsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp Morton’s kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp mustard powder
  • 1 tbsp celery powder
  • 1 tbsp dried crushed oregano
  • 1 tbsp dried crushed thyme
  • 1 tbsp ground allspice
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1 tbsp dry parsley
  • 1 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar

 

Combine all the above ingredients and mix well, store in airtight container until ready to use.

You can always double the ingredients, and store it for next time!

RIB MOP –What’s this for, and why do I need to make it if I have BBQ sauce?

The mop will help the rub penetrate the meat and stop the ribs from drying out during the long cooking process.

  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • ½ Beer  any beer your preference
  • ¼ cup rub seasoning from above

Combine all ingredients and stir well, refrigerate until ready to use.  You will need to use a good basting brush to mop the liquid onto the ribs.

 

BBQ SAUCE

  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp table salt
  • 2 cups ketchup
  • ½ cup yellow ballpark style mustard
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ⅓ cup Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup  lime juice
  • ¼ cup A1 steak sauce
  • ¼ cup dark molasses
  • ¼ cup Agave nectar or regular honey
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar (or light if that’s all you have)
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke
  • 1 tbsp Memphis Rub (from above)
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (can omit or try a hot sauce if you like)
  • 1 tbsp red pepper chili flakes (can omit if you don’t like that much heat)

Combine all ingredients cover and store in refrigerator until ready to use.

I prefer to prepare the Memphis Rub, the rib mop and the BBQ sauce the night before as it allows all the flavors ample time to blend, and the rub seasoning to really season the ribs

 

Apply the Memphis Rub to the Ribs

Prep the ribs by removing the membrane (I prefer a butter knife and dig in there)

The membrane is the white skin like coating on the back of the rib. If you don’t remove it the seasoning will not penetrate the ribs  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Generously coat the ribs with the rub (using your hands massage it all over the ribs, front and back)

Cover and store in fridge over night

 

Time to start the grill….

I prefer a slow hickory smoke when making ribs, but there are a number of options when grilling.

Here are Caveman’s tips for the best results:   

Get the BBQ ready.  I prefer charcoal but gas BBQ’s will work.  They are easier to set a temperature but in my opinion, the smoke pouches don’t work as well.

I also prefer to use the indirect heat method along with a water bath under the ribs.  It sounds harder than it is!  Simply have the heat source off to the side and put a tin of water or liquid directly under the ribs.  This allows steam from the water bath to penetrate the ribs and help keep them moist.

If you want to get really adventurous add flavor to the water bath. Apple chunks or any kind of aromatic ingredient (onions, celery, etc).

Example

The BBQ should heat up to about 225⁰F to let the ribs cook thoroughly.  If your BBQ doesn’t have a temperature gauge, get yourself a good BBQ (Oven) thermometer.   They can be purchased at most grocery stores for a few bucks.

 

 While the grill is heating up….

Pull the ribs from the fridge before you put them on the grill so they can come up to room temperature.

Keep the BBQ about 225⁰F and put ribs on, bone side down.   They need to cook for 4-6 hours * Be sure to check coals or temp every now and again.   

I like to baste the ribs with the mopping liquid at least once an hour.  Do not turn the ribs over! Let them cook bone side down the entire time.  Pouring your mopping liquid on the ribs every hour will allow the vinegar and beer to help break down the meat and keep it tender.

 

Additional Tips from the Caveman:

The longer you cook the ribs, the more tender and mouth-watering they will be. You be the judge.

Now, I prefer the Memphis Style Ribs dry, and having the BBQ sauce on the side.  This allows everyone to enjoy ribs as they choose, BBQ sauce or not!  For those that want the sauce, warm it up on a medium heat prior to serving.

If you prefer a wet rib, just pull the water bath, stoke up the flames, coat the ribs with the sauce and give them a few minutes on each side for the sauce to caramelize and thicken up on the exterior of the rib.

 

Cut and serve, with your favorite side, I prefer my homemade potato salad with a recipe to follow