What did I not cook ...
This weekend the oven was in a pretty much permanent use. Started by pizza yesterday lunchtime - a biga based dough recipe from Hamelman's book, followed by ciabatta from FB bread book (thanks!). Meanwhile (between one and the other) I roasted (burnt?) some red peppers and onions according to William Rubel's book - cleaned them and put in the fridge. Cleaned the oven out before putting the ciabbatas in.
This morning the oven was still above 200C, so firing it up was a doddle. I put a fantastic piece of sirloin in at noon at high heat - it seared quickly, I lowered the temperature slightly (door ...) and put in tray of jacket potatoes with just olive oil and salt, and a baking tray full of veg (onions, aubergines, peppers, zucchini) chopped roughly and sprinkled with salt, pepper, oregano and olive oil.
I used a meat thermometer to check on the meat, it was covered with aluminium foil after searing it, nearer the end I took the foil off and put a few pieces of wood on the embers in the corner to brown the meat some more.
Success - he says modestly - one of the best pieces of roast-beef I ever had. Pink in the middle, cooked, but not burnt outside, very slightly smoky flavour. Meat was top quality, from our local butcher, Mr. Higginson, which was of course a contributing factor.
Next time I'll take it out a little quicker - meat temp. was 50C, it went to 55C while resting and it was a little too well done.
The onions which lived on the tray under the rack on which the sirloin was roasting caramelised nicely, and when the meat was resting I decaramelised the tray with a cup of cabernet, then allowed the liquid to evaporate a bit before decanting it into a gravy boat.
At the beginning I did not want the tray to get too hot not to burn the onions, so I elevated it by an inch or so using an old home oven wire-shelf. By the end the oven floor was not that hot, so I removed the shelf to let the onions caramelise.
The entire late lunch (the meat took longer than I'd thought: 2h) except for the dessert was cooked in the oven. Later I put two more things into the cooling oven (about 180C): canelini beans cooked according to "fagioli al fiasco" recipe taken from Rubel as well, but in a normal steel pot, and a soup made of the peppers and onions roasted yesterday. The soup idea came from Rubel's book but I modified it slightly. We have tried these two just now and they came out rather well - that'll be tomorrow's dinner. The remaining roast-beef will go in lunch sandwiches (made with the ciabatta).
I baked too much bread and pizza this weekend, but the next door were happy to help. This oven has a social role too.
So much for the report ...
Re: What did I not cook ...
Congratulations. That is my idea of a wonderful weekend. You sound like Chef Jamie Oliver from "Jamie at home" Do you watch his show? He has inspired lots of dishes, even if we spice them a bit differently in Louisiana.
Re: What did I not cook ...
Thanks kk, I am flattered by the comparison. Far from this level and still a lot to learn here, but I really enjoyed the weekend. Next weekend my foodie daughter comes over and we'll be celebrating her little brother's birthday, so more cooking.
Meanwhile a busy week at work, possibly some more finishing work on the oven on a dry evening or two - I am still not happy with the roof edges.
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