January 20th, 2008

(no subject)

Had a wonderful dinner to night, which I cooked,
and worked out perfectly.

I bought a 2.25# tri-tip that was on sale at Safeway
at 50% off, since it was the last day it could be sold,
on wednesday.
It was a burgandy wine marinaded.

I cooked it tonight for sunday dinner.

A few hours before cooking, I added about a half clove of garlic,
chopped into spears, and imbedded into it, then sprinkled with
rosemary and black pepper.

Next, I cooked it fairly hotly on a BBQ (mesquite coals),
for about 7 minutes on each side, to sear in the juices.

Next, I put it into the oven at 350 degree F,
for about 1.5 hours (in a covered dish),
to slow cook it and make it as tender as possible

After which I let it cool for about 10 or 15 minutes.

At which point it was mouthwateringly tender and fall apart
in your mouth.

Served with red wine and rice pilof.

So many times my cooking attems are culinary disappoints,
which is why I want to record this success,
so I can hopefully do it again someday!

First Coffee Roasting

At the Northern California Homebrew Festival two years ago
(the great yearly homebrewer's campout weekend in northern CA),
on a saturday morning, I discovered a group of people roasting
their own coffee beans with their homemade coffee roasters.

I thought that was very cool, and the coffee they were making
was great ... so ever since I've been wanting to do it myself.
But have never really gotten the proper equipement together.

But yesterday, I found a stove top pop-corn popper that some
people use, at a local thrift shop. So I picked it up,
and went over to the homebrew shop, which also sells raw coffee beans,
and bought a pound, in order to make my first attempt.

I bought the "Monsoon Java Arabica" which is supposedly "sweet pip tobacco,
light earth with smoky/nutty notes. Pristine light acid and very full body."
Mostly since this was my first attempt, and that was the cheapest available
at about $3.75

It took about 15 minutes on medium high heat on the stove top
to complete the roasting process.
It produced a lot more smoke than I was expecting (but smelled

Since I had watch people doing it a couple of times, I knew that
the roasting would be done, once the crackly popping stopped.

The cheap pop-corn popper did not seem to be the greatest ...
the gears have to be pushed at all times together, or they slip.
I'm sure the more expensive ones are built a bit better ...
but since I only spent $6, its hard to complain. I might be able
to fix it, buy bending the frame a bit so it connects better.
Of course the fancist ones at the homebrew shop cost in the hundreds
of dollars.

It seemed to work out though, the beans were roasted very dark black
(my hope is I did not over cook them).

I won't know what they taste like until tuesday, since my coffee brewing
set-up is at work.