Mack's Corner

This Week

Isn't it ironic

Sometimes everything I do is ironic. My wife had a bunch of her friends, 30 people, over for dinner so I asked a few of my friends over to help. We worked hard, cooked, served food, washed dishes, scrubbed pans. We had a great time, way more fun than the people who came for dinner.

I was working outside in the rain, thinking I was going to be wet all day, I hate being wet. When I finished I was covered with mud. I looked like a 16 year old with a new 4 wheel drive pick-up. I had mud up and down the front of my jeans, on my face, up my back. Where had I been? Where had it come from? Somehow I missed it! I thought I was doing great till I looked in a mirror. If it's pouring rain, shouldn't you be cleaner????

My heavy jacket is warm but it's not waterproof. My rain jacket is water proof but it doesn't keep you very warm, especially if you're standing still. The strange thing about my rain jacket is that you sweat in it no matter how cold it is. So I'm dry from the rain, but I'm wet from sweat and I'm freezing. It's like having the flu……

God's like that. He does stuff you don't expect: The more you give, the more you get. The less you try to control your life, the more freedom you have. The more you pray, the more you understand. The more you help someone else the better you feel. The person in the kitchen with the cleanest hands is the one washing the dishes.

Maybe I can wear my rain jacket on the outside of my heavy jacket? It would look kinda funny, people would probably point at me, but I wouldn't feel like I had the flu and I wouldn't be wet all day, I hate being wet all day…


Cooking 220 - 2 pans, 2 burners, 20 minutes:

The latest coolest way to cook is Sous-Vide. What you do is put fish or steak or anything you want to cook in a plastic bag and then submerge the bag in water. The water is set to the temperature that you want your meat to be..  i.e. a rare steak is normally 120 degrees in the center if you cook it on the grill. So to cook it sous-vide you would set your water temp to 120 degrees and put the steak in it. After about an hour the steak will be 120 all the way through. Exactly perfect! .. . When you're ready to eat you take it out of the bag and put it in a super-hot skillet to sear it on both sides for 20 seconds, just long enough to get it nice and crusty and brown. You're not really cooking it, it's already exactly 120 degrees, you're just putting some brown on it so it looks right….. The problem is keeping the water exactly 120 degrees!! You can buy a machine for $100 - $400, but that's a little pricy…. So you can overcome it by having enough water… Maybe just the kitchen sink if your hot water comes out hot enough.

Sous-Vide Salmon for 2 (Perfect Salmon)

Adapted from "Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking," by Nathan Myhrvold, Chris Young and Maxime Bilet

Salt and Pepper (plus any other spices or herbs you like)

2 salmon fillets, 1 inch thick, about 1/4 pound each

2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons unsalted butter.

Season the fish with salt and pepper. Place a large pot (as big as you've got that will fit in your sink) in your sink, and add warm water until the pot is full and the water reaches 115 degrees (use an instant-read meat thermometer, this is about the temp of  hot bath water). Place two fillets side by side in a Zip-lock bag. Drizzle fillets with oil. Submerge the bags halfway into the warm water (this creates a vacuum). Seal as airtight as possible, pushing out any excess air.

Once all the salmon fillets are submerged in the pot, add more hot water until the water temperature returns to 115 degrees (the cold fish will reduce the water temperature). Let the salmon rest in the water bath about 20 to 25 minutes (or longer .. remember as long as you can keep the water temp at 115, you're good) until its core temperature is 113 degrees (remove and check one fillet with an instant-read thermometer). Check the water temperature occasionally and add more hot water as needed to maintain the temperature of 115 degrees.

Transfer the salmon bags to a cutting board. Remove fish from plastic bags and gently pull off the skins (or use a butter knife). Transfer the cooked fillets to a plate for easier handling.

(if you want to add extra spices or herbs or lemon juice or Tabasco, add it to the butter before you sear the fish. This will season the butter. The Modernist Cuisine people have shown that putting extra seasoning in the bag with the fish doesn't have much of an effect.)

Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat until the butter just starts to bubble. Sear the fillets on both sides in the pan while basting with the hot butter, about 30 seconds. Serve immediately.

This is as good as it gets!!!!


How about saving a kid's life!!

When you give Platelets it's like giving St Jude $700 - $1000. If we don't give them, they have to buy them.

Giving Platelets is like giving blood, it just takes longer (1 1/2 hours) and you get all of your blood back (so you can do it every week if you want) . I know it's a long trip to go all the way down to St Jude, but you may be saving a kid's life . plus you get to watch a movie while you're there. Call Kim at 901.595.2024 and she'll setup an appointment and treat you like family. Just tell her you're from Hope.

Directions: From Poplar, turn north on Third Street, then right on Lauderdale/Jackson Ave (first right after you go under the expressway). Enter through the north guard gate (you'll see the Danny Thomas Pavilion. Gold top).

Tell the guard at the gate that you are here to donate blood. The guard will instruct you where to park. You will then enter the hospital by the red side door closest to the blood donor parking lot. The Blood Donor Center is in the southwest corner of the hospital on the ground floor.

Appointment times are generally available Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Except on Tuesdays they start at 9:15am.

See you this weekend. Bring a friend. It's going to be great!!!



Posted by Mack Oates at 9:29 AM