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Righteously Good

Righteously Good

Just walking into Java Green makes you feel like you’ve reduced your carbon footprint. This righteous little Asian environmental coffee shop is Mecca for all vegans, great for vegetarians, and fun for anyone looking for a change in scenery.

Where else can you get a smoothie made out of strawberry, banana, nut milk, avocado, and agave? The cookies and cream soy milkshake is sweet and silky with a nice nuttiness, while a grilled tempeh, spinach and avocado sandwich is a satisfying if not especially flavorful mouthful. Everything is organic, from the kimchi raw soup to the spicy kelp noodle salad. Vegan sushi is deliciously fresh, with deep purple rice, soy chicken, avocado, and asparagus. If you’re on a health kick, or just passionate about sustainability, Java Green is perfect to veg out in style.


The Radical Homemaker

The heat of summer inspires meat lovers everywhere to cast aside their pots and pans for the sake of connecting more primitively with their food. Grills light up across the nation, and flames lick at burgers and tender cuts of rib eye steaks, sirloins, porterhouses, t-bones, and filet mignon, liberated from the tempering effects of a skillet or roasting pan. I share this national obsession, yet find myself craving more than simply a piece of fire-seared flesh. I want to chew, to exercise my canines on a piece of meat that has a little more muscle integrity, to feel it tear as the juices run down my chin, to experience the extra-intense beefy flavor that can only come from a piece of meat that requires mastication.

I’m not suggesting that all grassfed beef should be chewy. However, on every animal, there are cuts of meat that are known for their tenderness, such as the tenderloin there are cuts known for having lots of marbling and connective tissue that become meltingly tender with braising, like the chuck roast. There is also a largely over-looked portion of the beef, rarely praised in cooking magazines, secretly spurned by meat writers for being difficult to work with: the top round and the sirloin tip, the two cuts used for beef kababs. These lean cuts of meat don’t share the same tenderness as sirloin steaks and filet mignon. They lack the connective tissue that enables them to hold up to braising. As a cookbook writer, I am forever facing the challenge of trying to develop methods for cooking them that will render them tender.* But making tenderness the only priority in a recipe can fail to showcase a cut of meat that has other, equally glorious attributes.

What makes for tasty meat? There are three factors that determine meat palatability: texture, juiciness, and flavor. Sadly, too many Americans have learned to focus on only the first factor, to the exclusion of the other two. Furthermore, most of us have interpreted “texture” to mean “tenderness,” and assume that is the only mark of quality for meat palatability. Our limited understanding of the scope of texture keeps us from enjoying organ meats, which have more exotic textures, and causes many folks to reject anything that requires cutting with a steak knife, unless it has been pre-masticated in a meat grinder.

I don’t always want tenderness from a piece of meat. I’m not saying that I get hankerings for shoe leather. But I tend to crave flavor and juiciness above all else in my meat, and I find those factors most present in a piece of meat that requires chewing, rather than gumming. And I like chewing, contrary to its apparent lack of national popularity.

The benefits of chewing: Chewing, breaking down food in our mouths and mixing it with our saliva, is critical to healthy digestion. If we aren’t in such a hurry to inhale our food, chewing longer greatly increases our enjoyment. It promotes gastro-intestinal health by prolonging the cephalic stage of digestion — the time when we see, smell and taste food, which stimulates the production of saliva in the mouth, and digestive enzymes in the stomach. Chewing is good for us. …Especially when the reward is full flavor, juicy beef.

And when it comes to lusty chewing and juicy flesh, I can think of no finer feast than meat on a stick. Grocery stores have been known to sell sirloin and filet mignon as kabab meat, but no self-respecting butcher would condone such a practice. The acids in marinades can break down super-tender cuts like tenderloin and sirloin and render them mushy. Also, the tender cuts often do not have enough concentrated meat flavor, and are easily overpowered by the marinade. A good kabab should be cut from the sirloin tip or top round, which have enough muscle integrity to allow it to stand up to a marinating process . As an added bonus, because there is a lot of top round and sirloin tip on a beef, kababs are often much less expensive than a piece of sirloin or tenderloin.

Don’t confuse kababs with stew meat. Just because both types of meat are cut into cubes does not make them interchangeable. Stew meat comes from the chuck, brisket, shanks and bottom round, all cuts that have connective tissue that will require moisture to break down. They are typically cut into 1-inch pieces, and they will taste like shoe leather if cooked on your grill. Good kababs come from the top round or sirloin tip, and they should be larger cubes, about 1 ½ inches.

Basic techniques: Kababs can be marinated for as little as two hours, or for as long as 24 hours. When you are ready to grill them, remove them from the marinade and take a few moments to blot them dry. The flavor of the marinade will have already penetrated the meat. You will want as little moisture on the outside as possible, because the meat will sear better. (Moist meat will not sear as well. The moisture will cause it to steam instead.) Once the meat has seared directly over a hot flame for about 2 minutes per side, remove the kababs and cook them indirectly for about five minutes. This indirect time will allow the sugars to caramelize over the surface of the meat, giving them that glistening fresh-from-the-grill flavor. It will also safeguard the juiciness and tenderness of the muscle fibers by preventing them from contracting too quickly (remember: the goal is “chewy,” not “shoe leather”), and it will leave your kababs delightfully medium rare. If you are seeking a little more inspiration and instruction, try using the recipe, below.

Dad’s Tamari-Basalmic Beef Kebobs

This recipe is taken from Long Way on a Little: An Earth Lover’s Companion for Enjoying Meat, Pinching Pennies and Living Deliciously.

Kababs, when marinated in advance, are a terrific way to create a fast, tasty meal. I find that the secret to enjoying them lies in appreciating the fact that they come from slightly chewier cuts of meat – Not so chewy as to warrant stewing, but just chewy enough to enjoy a lusty pull with your teeth as the rare meat releases juices on your tongue. If a few extra hungry souls show up at your table, expand the food available by skewering up and grilling some onions, peppers, tomatoes or summer squash to go with it.

Dad’s Tamari-Basalmic Marinade, see below

2 pounds beef kababs (alternatively, use a London broil, sirloin tip, or sirloin steak cut into 1 ½ inch cubes)

Metal skewers, or bamboo skewers soaked in water for 30 minutes

Pour the marinade into a large, stainless-steel, porcelain, glass or other non-reactive bowl. Add the kababs and mix well to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight, or for a minimum of 2 hours. Stir them periodically to ensure all parts of the meat have an opportunity to absorb the marinade.

When you are ready to grill, remove the meat from the marinade, blot dry with a paper towel, place it on skewers, and allow it to come to room temperature while you prepare the grill.

Heat one side of the grill until the flame is medium-hot. You should be able to hold your hand five inches beyond the flame for no more than 4 seconds. Scrape the grate clean with a wire brush, then brush it lightly with oil.

Grill the meat directly over the flame, with the cover in place, for two minutes. Turn the skewers over, and grill them 2 minutes longer. Move them to the side of the grill opposite the flame, cover, and let them cook indirectly for 5 minutes longer for medium-rare meat. Serve immediately.


New World Thanksgiving (Rancho Gordo)

This great guide provides a number of recipes for modern-day, New World dishes. (Link included in the text below)

While there is no primary hominy dish to be found in this guide (there is one dish that calls for the addition of hominy, if interested), it is, nonetheless, a wonderful resource for anyone who wants to add dishes more akin to those found in indigenous communities throughout the New World to their Thanksgiving (and even their everyday!) table. Thank you, Rancho Gordo!


Marshmallow

The idea of toasted marshmallow frosting makes you think. Is there anything better than s'mores, and is there anything that says cool nights around blazing bonfires better than the taste of gooey marshmallows?

Nope. But can you put them inside a cake? Chocolate, maybe?

Yes, please! If that sounds like the most amazing thing ever, try this recipe from the Brown-Eyed Baker. You can't go wrong with layers of chocolate and marshmallow, all wrapped in a silky chocolate frosting. S'mores in cake form might be the perfect way to bring an autumn bonfire indoors, and you might even want to experiment with crumbly graham crackers to complete the reimagined dessert.


Righteously Good - Recipes

There are so many reasons to eat Right(eously). Here’s 10 more this Fall.

Join Righteous for Dia de los Veggies, a celebration of food for the living, featuring tacos, beer, music, art, and more.

All the tips and tricks on ending plastic straw usage at home, in the office, or out to eat.

Adios all but wanted to share what I learned from my time at Righteous Foods


Righteous: honest AND excellent.

That’s what we’re all about here at Righteous Kitchen. An honest company that creates excellent meals. Period.

Righteous Kitchen is a local, family owned catering company that specializes in fresh, all-natural meal prep and delivery to your home for your family. WE shop, chop, create, cook, and cool. YOU order, heat, and eat! Kitchens don’t get more righteous than that!

Fresh, delicious, interesting, meals prepared just for you - all our meals are made to order and made from scratch with fresh, all-natural ingredients.

There are multiple sizes to feed everyone! Great food that’s a cinch to order and heat at home and will have your whole crew asking for an encore!

Righteous Kitchen also specializes is large volume drop-off catering for holidays, parties, events, offices, schools, and more! Need food for 10? 100? We’ve got you covered no matter the size or the occasion. COVID friendly portioning and individual packaging available as well as traditional serving trays.


How to Convert a Regular Milk Recipe Into a Buttermilk Recipe

1. Cut the amount of baking powder in half.
2. Add one-quarter teaspoon baking soda per small batch.
3. Leave the salt measure intact.
4. Replace sweet regular milk with buttermilk.

You can probably cut down on the baking powder more drastically without getting flat biscuits, and if you want to experiment with using none at all, go right ahead. I'll just stick with what turned out perfect for me first time on every recipe (not counting those dang doughnuts). The following goodies represent our best use of all the buttermilk we've found ourselves with. Enjoy these recipes and expand on them … and for goodness' sake, don't just feed a treasure like buttermilk to the chickens!


Watch the video: Righteously Good- Sold (December 2021).