Don’t Let It Get Your Goat

Reading other blogs definitely helps spark the imagination.  I come across ingredients that I would never think of using or trying.  Goat is one of them.  I love goat cheese but never thought about the meat.  I found some ground goat meat at our local co-op and thought now was a good a time as ever.

Of course then I had to figure out what to do with it.  Because I knew I wanted cheese to be one of the components I had to come up with something that would work with jarlsberg as my husband doesn’t like goat cheese.  I found this recipe for goat burgers and I adapted it to make it mine.  For the burger bread I made the baguettes that we like.  The crumb on it is getter better and better with practice.

I started with the carmelised onions first as those need to be cooked slowly.  Heat some olive oil and toss in the onions.

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Don’t cook them fast or on high heat otherwise you’ll burn them instead of carmelise them.  For the pound of goat meat I chopped up a few garlic cloves, fresh rosemary and thyme, seasoned with sea salt and pepper.

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Mix together without overworking the meat then add a few squirts of brown mustard and a tablespoon or so of Worcestershire sauce.  Form into patties and set aside.

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Add a few teaspoons of brown sugar and a couple of splashes of Worcestershire sauce to the onions and stir well.

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While this continues to cook heat up some olive oil in another skillet and brown both sides of the burgers.  I cooked them about 3 minutes on each side.  Remove and put them on a baking tray.  Add the cheese to melt.

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Bake in the oven at 375F/190C until the burgers are cooked to the desired doneness and the cheese has melted.  Place them on the buns and top with the onions.

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Serve with the veg of your choice.  We found these enormous asparagus and they turned out to be lovely even though they were hard to cook without overcooking them.

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We really enjoyed the goat meat.  I’ll have to find goat chops to try something else but we’ll definitely be making goat burgers again.

Setting up the iPad has gone well.  I found an app to let me put a watermark on the photos which I’ll be trying as soon as I get the adapter delivered that will let me take the photos off the SLR.  The only app I need to find now is one that allows me to resize photos taken with the iPad or iPhone.  Haven’t figured that one out yet.  Any suggestions?

 

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Baguettes

As I’ve probably mentioned previously we don’t buy bread very often.  In fact it is quite rare.  We prefer to bake our own for many reasons.  It is very inexpensive, we can pronounce the ingredients, and it tastes better right out of the oven.  So a few years ago we decided to branch out and really learn how to bake different kinds of bread but we needed a good bread book.  We were lucky enough to find “Local Breads” by Daniel Leader.  I can’t recommend this enough, it is that good.  It is chock full of European breads from artisan bakers around Europe.  With each recipe he talks about the area the bread is from and the person he learned the recipe from.  It is easy to follow if you are a beginner and doesn’t get old if you are experienced.

This recipe is the Parisian Daily Bread and takes about an afternoon to make with all the rising.  We usually bake this up if we want a wine and cheese night.

To start add 1 1/2 cups of tepid water, 1 teaspoon instant yeast, 3 1/4 cups of flour and 1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt.  Now he describes the flour needed as “Type 55-style flour from King Arthur or Guisto’s or unbleached all-purpose flour”.

Mix together with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon to it looks like a clumpy mess.

Cover and let rest for at least 20 minutes.  This develops the gluten.  Now there are two ways to knead, by hand or with the Kitchen Aid.  This bread needs to be kneaded for about 10 minutes so I use the mixer to save my wrists.  And I’ve found it comes out better this way.  So I knead it on setting 2 of the mixer for 8 to 10 minutes.

It starts to come together quickly.  As it is kneading often little balls of dough come off and when that happens, stop and mush it together.

When you get to the 8 minute mark start checking to see that it has been kneaded enough.  Take a small bit of the dough and stretch it.  If it stretches and becomes translucent without breaking then it is done.  If not, knead a bit more.

Spray the bowl and put the dough in and cover with a hot wet tea towel and let rise.  Now here is where I accidentally deviated from the recipe.  And it was a good thing.  It says to let rise for 45 minutes and it will increase 25%.  Well I let it rise until double.  Normally the baguettes come out a bit flat but not this time!

Turn it out on a floured counter and flatten into a rectangle and fold like an envelope in thirds.

Put back into the bowl and let rise to nearly double again.

Turn out on to counter again and divide into three baguettes.  Place on parchment paper and slice the tops.  Cover with cling film that has been sprayed with oil.

Let it rise again for another 45- 60 minutes.  Preheat the oven to 450 F.  You will need to place a large rectangle pizza stone on the top shelf and an iron cast skillet in the bottom.  When it is time to bake slide the bread on the parchment paper onto the pizza stone.  Put about 5 ice cubes in the skillet and bake for 15-20 minutes until nice and golden brown.

Of course we quality check the bread with some butter.  🙂  This is the bread I used in my gourmet cheeseburger recipe.

Bacon Crostini

One of the things we learned at the cooking class we took in Tuscany was crostinis.  Easy to make and great for a light meal or starters.  My husband makes amazing bread and he did up the baguettes for this.  Unfortunately I was at work so I don’t have any photos.  When I make them I will do a post.

To start I gathered some fresh rosemary from the garden.

Then I chopped up some bacon and onion.  The bacon is nitrate free that we can get at our grocery store.

I start rendering the bacon first, once there is enough bacon fat I through in the onions and rosemary to cook through.  To deglaze the pan and add flavour I usually splash in a bit of white balsamic vinegar.  It’s not real balsamic obviously but that’s what it says on the label.  I got distracted and splashed in dry sherry instead.  Fortunately it worked just as well.

While this is cooking put some olive oil on the sliced bread and toast.  Top the crostini and enjoy!

I usually do a decent batch of this because it is so delicious.  This is very good paired with a chablis or pinot grigio.