How to Grill the Perfect Steak

Written by Elizabeth Nyland of Guilty Kitchen.

Today is more of a lesson in the fine art of grilling meat than it is a recipe, so no long lists of ingredients will haunt you this fine afternoon.

One of the most popular questions I get asked by friends, family and readers alike is “How do you tell when meat is cooked?” This is a loaded question. Everyone likes it differently and everyone you ask this humble question to will probably have their own answer.

Here’s mine: Practice.

The actual testing of doneness is crucial, yes, but there are other steps of equal importance. Let’s take a look at them, shall we?

Eight Tips to Grilling the Perfect Steak

1. Always bring your meat up to room temperature before grilling. This ensures even cooking throughout. You wouldn’t jump in a steaming hot shower after running around naked in the cold would you? It might sting a little bit – unless you’re Norwegian…I hear they like doing that.

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Not Just Hot Dogs: 3 Real Food Campfire Meals

This topic is perfect timing for our family, as we’re heading up to the Boundary Waters tomorrow for a much needed family vacation. This is the time of summer when the kids are restless and the parent’s patience is wearing thin. We can only be cooped up for so long before we just need to spread our wings and shake our tail feathers a little bit.

So often I feel like people give up when it comes to camping food. All creativity is thrown out the window, and the hot dog and hot dog bun enter the picture, taking up residence as the only dinner able to be cooked over an open fire. But it’s not.
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Simple & Seasonal: Welsh Rarebit with Grilled Asparagus & Mushrooms

A recent pledge to Meatless Mondays as well as an abundance of gorgeous local asparagus has transformed our weekday meals. We’ve enjoyed various risotto and pastas with asparagus, asparagus pizza with fresh pesto, and most recently, Welsh Rarebit.

Welsh What?? I know, the name tells us nothing about the dish, but it’s really just cheese fondue, simplified; a creamy cheese sauce, spiked with a light beer, rounded out with mustard, and poured over toast.

Welsh rarebit (or ‘rabbit’ according to Gourmet Today cookbook) is something I remember eating as a child, as it was a favorite of my father. He hails from England, where the dish originated, and no doubt also enjoyed the comforting cheesy-bread as a child.

Now I’m serving welsh rarebit to my children, only the toast is whole-wheat baguette, grilled and brushed with olive oil, and I’ve tucked some greens in there as well to balance out the dish. It’s fast, fun and fresh. Best of all, it’s meatless. [Read more…]

Been to a Farm Lately? (Recipe: Asparagus & Cherry Tomato Pizza)

Much can be said about the environmental and economic benefits of eating locally sourced foods. More can be said about the adage that a local food advocate from my town often uses: Eat food you know from people you know.

Every summer my family makes more than a handful of pilgrimages to local farms. These trips are more than just a way to escape the city and another day at the park.  They are a way for us to share with the people who produce our food. And more importantly, a way for us to show our girls that meat does not come on a styrofoam tray and vegetables grow in the dirt.

Oh yeah, and farms are fun. All kids love dirt and animals.

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New on Simple Kids: Irish Flag Stew & Whole Wheat Soda Bread

Everyone is Irish on St. Paddy’s and Simple Kids contributor Christen Babb gives us two classic Irish recipes to help celebrate the holiday. Keeping true to her passion for children and nutrition, she also shares how cooking can be an exciting and powerful tool for teaching your child.

From her post:

Every parent intuitively knows that the more your child is personally invested in a project, the more likely he is to learn and apply the knowledge gained. One of our many jobs as parents is to foster fun learning experiences that will encourage critical thinking and creative expression. [Read more…]