pecan and pumpkin pie
Pecan and pumpkin pies 2019

What do we have after Thanksgiving and the ensuing Black Friday hype? Leftovers (and pictures).

Pictured here are 2019’s pies. The crusts—often the most frustrating part for me—were quite good this year. Although, I should have blind baked the pumpkin pie’s crust. I used this Pate Brisee recipe, it’s simple and the result was nice and flaky. For the fillings, I followed the sage advice in this NYT Opinion piece and followed the recipes on the respective bottle/can of the ingredients.

Keep reading to see some more poor-quality pictures of questionable-quality pies through the years.

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To celebrate Independence Day, we served pulled pork–as tacos.

Here are the recipes, and some notes…

Meat

Pork Shoulder

This was a much smaller piece of meat than I’ve cooked in the past–about 4.5 pounds and boneless. I followed the same instructions from past cooks, for the most part. I didn’t inject, and I forgot to add more rub before cooking. It was tasty, but I think the larger, bone-in ones were slightly moister and more flavorful. Not sure if this is because they are larger, or they have the bone, or both. The cooking temperature was very steady around 250º for the entire time, and it took about 9 hours to get to 195º internal temperature. I’m going to up my timing calculation to 2 hours per pound next time, to be safe.

Sides etc.

Roberto Santibañez’s Truly Mexican is the go-to book for Mexican cooking around here, and provided these delicous recipes

The Smashed Potato Salad with Chorizo, Aioli, and Scallions was a winner.

I also over grilled some zucchini, not a winner.

Dessert

Nectarine and Blackberry Cobbler

Ribeye Steak
Reverse searing steaks produces great results. I think they are superior to sous vide when it comes to flavor, especially when cooking indirectly with charcoal.

With Kenji’s reverse sear method as a (very detailed) guideline, here is what I do on the Green Egg:

  • Get the butcher to cut a steak at about 1 1/2 – 1 3/4 inches (most of the precut ones seem to be an inch or less, these tend to overcook before developing a good char)
  • Set up for an indirect cook and preheat to a relatively stable temperature between 200 – 250º
  • Put a thermometer in the center of the steak and place on the grate
  • Cook to 115º internal temperature (for medium rare, see Kenji’s guide for other temperatures), keep the dome temperature under 250º. This will take around 20 to 30 minutes.
  • When steak reaches desired temperature, remove steak and the plate setter. Put the grate back in the egg and get the dome temperature up to about 600º. Getting the egg to temperature might take 10 minutes or so.
  • Once the fire is blazing, cook the steak for 45 seconds on each side to develop a nice crust. Check the internal temperature, I’m looking for 125 – 130º (for medium rare)
  • Cut, if needed, and serve

This process take a bit more time than just grilling the steak, but it’s worth it.