Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Grilled Mojo Beef – Rhymes with “Everybody Say Ho!”

I got a request for a Cuban-style mojo marinade recently, which sounded like something I’d enjoy making, but to be honest I wasn’t exactly sure what it was. I knew I was probably pronouncing it wrong, but other than that, I couldn’t remember having it anywhere.

I’d seen “mojo” sauces before, but they were at Spanish restaurants, and seemed to be chili-based; so I did a little of research, and of course, every single recipe I looked at was different. They all had garlic, citrus, and olive oil, but after that, the spices and seasonings varied greatly. So, this is basically a composite of what I saw, and it really came out well.

I think this would work great as an all-purpose marinade for just about any thing destined for the grill, but as I mentioned in the video, skirt steak would be my top choice.  Unless horribly overcooked, it always comes out juicy, and tender, as long as you slice it across the grain.  It also tends to really soak in the flavors of the marinade quite well, which I believe is due to it being such a well-marbled cut.

Once again, please excuse my makeshift brick grill, but I’m happy to report there’s help on the way.  So stay tuned for me to show that off soon, but in the meantime I really hope you get this delicious Cuban inspired mojo marinade a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 4 portions:
2 pounds beef skirt steak, cut into smaller pieces
1 large navel orange, juiced
3 limes, juiced
1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
6-8 cloves garlic, finely crushed
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon Kosher salt, plus more to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup freshly chopped cilantro
extra lime wedges

Friday, July 22, 2016

How to Make Sushi Rice That Even Works for Sushi

I don’t make sushi at home very often, or ever, since we’re surrounded by top-notch sushi chefs here in San Francisco, but that doesn’t mean I don’t make sushi rice. I think sushi rice makes a perfect side dish for just about any grilled meat, and since it’s perfectly fine at room temperature, it’s great for picnics.

You can even turn it into some quick tortilla-less tacos using nori seaweed wraps, as seen in the video. They make for such a unique summer meal – the perfect delivery system for any and all leftovers. I even seen it rolled into balls, and tossed in toasted sesame seeds, or seaweed, and served like truffles.

What I’m trying to say is, you can do a lot with this stuff. Including sushi. There are thousands of videos on YouTube showing how to make literally every type of sushi in existence, so check those out if you’re so inclined. Maybe one of these days I’ll even give it a go, if only for the “constructive criticism.”  I really hope you give this sushi rice technique a try soon.  Enjoy!


2 cups sushi rice, rinsed well, and left to dry for one hour
2 1/4 cups water
1/4 to 1/3 cup seasoned *rice vinegar, or to taste

* I buy mine already seasoned, but to make your own seasoned rice vinegar; combine:
1 cup rice vinegar, or cider vinegar
1/2 cup white sugar
4 teaspoons kosher salt

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

This Tuna Poke is No Joke

There are many of foods I’ll stand in line for, and/or pay too much for, but Hawaiian-style tuna poke isn’t one of them. I can’t make a world-class croissant at home. I can make a decent one, but not a perfect one, so I’ll happily queue up at a boulangerie that does.

However, when it comes to poke, the technique is so basic that even the most inexperienced cooks can get something pretty much identical to what they’d get out. There’s one catch though. You have to use only the freshest possible tuna, even if that means it’s frozen.

Hopefully you’ll be able to get a hold of some fresh, sushi-grade tuna, but if you can’t, frozen will work. What many people don’t realize, is that most of the fish they enjoy at their favorite sushi restaurants has actually been frozen beforehand anyway. Google it, it’s true.

So, as long as the tuna is Grade A, or sushi grade, the frozen variety will work. Above and beyond that, all the other ingredients, except for the soy sauce, are optional. So, please use this video as merely a guide to the technique, understanding that this will work with so many different ingredients. I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Makes 4 portions Tuna Poke:
1 pound sushi-grade ahi tuna (aka yellowfin), cut into about 3/4-inch cubes
1/4 cup high-quality soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
2 tablespoons roasted macadamia nuts, crushed
1 tablespoon finely crumbled dried seaweed
1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
Other delicious additions include (add to finished poke, not the marinade, otherwise you may lose that gorgeous appearance):
- seasoned rice vinegar
- lemon or lime juice

* Toss tuna with marinade, and chill for 2 hours in the fridge before serving.