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  • Writer's pictureNancy Bauer

Sunday Supper

Updated: Oct 23, 2019

Mister and I were supposed to go out tonight as a good-bye celebration, since I'm heading back south to Florida in a couple of days. We'll be apart for two months or so this time, as I focus on selling my book on Virginia Wine Travel and getting Hurry Up, Girl off the ground, and he just works. And most importantly, we both work on losing the weight that we invariably gain when we are together and celebrating every night (it's Friday! you got some great kudos at work today! I finished the draft of my book! it's Friday!).

Instead, a lingering cold and my killer electric fireplace (one of my 7 favorite things) won out, and we had a cozy dinner at home over this season's Billions, one of our fave cable shows. (Honestly, it is so complicated and moves so fast, even Mister spends half the time saying Why did she do that?, but it's so well acted and compelling, not to mention it's a great intro to how big money works, that it's at the top of our rotation.)

So, dinner on the fly...fortunately Mister always has some boxes of steak in the freezer, and not just any steak, but Allen Brothers steaks. This premium steaks thing is an obsession that goes back 5 or 6 years, to me puzzling out Christmas gifts - what to get someone whose obsessions are so over-your-head that you can't even begin to think of getting them a tech gadget. But rib-eye - yes, that I could figure out. I needed a "big gift" - the anchor under the tree, something he'd never had before, so I ordered a rib-eye/burger combo from D'Artagnan through Costco. At that time it cost around (a very generous of me) $30 per steak - not too much different than now. They were so undeniably better than Safeway that unfortunately (or fortunately), ultra-premium steak is now the du jour at our house.

For tonight, I took out a steak for Mister (we've done taste tests with all the shippers and settled on Allen brothers as our favorite) and a couple of Angus burgers for me. I should have stopped at one, but these things...I mean, have you had them?

But what to do for sides? I've been in the house for days with my cold; no groceries. But hello, carrots. Always a great stand-by. A quick Google takes me to the Chunky Chef's fairly basic recipe for roasted carrots. Carrots are so perfect I'm sure that quick recipe was all I needed, but garlic never hurt anything, so I tossed in some fresh garlic (from a jar). My sister-in-law from Texas gave me this awesome 4-pack of Texas olive oil and balsamic vinegar for Christmas, so I pulled out this one - very bold, not too peppery - and I had some rosemary hanging around, so that went in, too. For salt, I got fancy and used a (very large) pinch of this Fleur de Sel that a friend brought me from Paris. (Try this: do a little taste test of really good salt vs. what you use daily and see what you think. Maybe I'm imagining things. but these pricey salts have some depth and umami that our grocery store $.99 salt just cannot compare to.)

Hurry Up, Girl's motto is "no rules" and we don't care about no stinking recipes, and sometimes we get burned. But tonight, oh no, girl. We rocked those carrots.

For the meats, the flavor of these pricey babes is awesome so you don't need to go overboard (thought I); for the steak, I used a made-up recipe from my parents that has special meaning to me but I'm almost sure I'm misremembering - soy sauce, pepper, garlic powder. Simple. And for the burgers, a taste test: one with a little pepper and my current spice crush, Badia's Complete Seasoning, which I fell in lust with after an encounter in the cupboard of a rented villa on a small Caribbean island. The second burger was sprinkled with be-still-my-heart smoked paprika and a little garlic powder and pepper. Crucial error - I didn't add any salt on #2.

Cut to the finish: steak was perfectly cooked in my cast iron pan - seared on high for a couple minutes each side, then a few minutes on low under the miracle Poppy Lid. However...not enough salt on the steak (I used half a packet leftover soy sauce from our Chinese take-out, though I usually pour on much more when I have a bottle - several tablespoons). On the burgers, the Badia was good but #2 Smoked Paprika Burger would have certainly won had I remembered to add a little daggone salt. (I killed a dish with salt a week or so ago, and I'm still a little gun-shy.)

The amazing poppy lid. Use this miracle as a pot lid, in the microwave, in the oven - it's truly magic. And way lighter than a cast iron lid.

And voila. With a bottle of one of my Virginia wine red blend faves, from the enigmatic Jake Busching of Charlottesville, it was a Sunday Supper to love.

What did you enjoy today?

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