Go Red For Know Your Fire Friday

Celebrating Chef George's 24th Anniversary on PBS

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With red meat, that is. I'm often asked how I create my recipes. The truth is, there isn't really one way; sometimes by theme, sometimes by menu needs and sometimes... well, because it's the ingredients I have on hand. The later reason can be the most enjoyable to create with. And this is just one story that became a recipe ...

Once on the road, while taping my TV series, when we were between shows; some of my crew wanted a snack. There is nothing like a hungry crew staring at you to give you motivation. Upon looking at the fresh ingredients we had on hand, I found a few chipotle peppers. I started from there, and the warm smokey flavor made it a hit with my crowd. I’m sure it will satisfy yours too.

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George’s Sliced Beef Wraps

Makes 10 wraps

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2 pounds sirloin steak 2-thick, or flank or hanger

For marinade:

2 chipotle (smoked-dried jalapeño) peppers, or 2 teaspoons powder

1 cup pineapple juice

1/4 cup raisins

1 head caramelized garlic

1 Tablespoon wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1 Tablespoon cilantro

Fresh ground black pepper

Place pineapple juice, raisins, garlic, vinegar, olive oil, cilantro, black pepper and chipotle peppers in food processor and blend well. Pour blended marinade over sirloin and marinate 24-48 hours, refrigerate.

Remove meat from refrigerator one half hour prior to cooking.

Preheat a cast iron pan, grill pan, or outdoor grill to high. 

Remove meat from marinade and grill on high heat for 3-4 minutes on each side, brushing with chipotle marinade while cooking.  Lower heat to medium and allow to cook slowly to desired doneness. 

Remove from grill and allow meat to rest 3-4 minutes before slicing. Slice meat thinly against the grain.

For wraps:

1 cup black beans, cooked or canned 

1 cup *Tomatillo Sauce, see below

3 Tablespoons cilantro, coarse chopped

10 flour tortillas

Wraps may be served warm or cold. To serve warm wraps, heat tortillas quickly on grill or a griddle pan. Top warm tortillas with sliced sirloin, warm beans, cilantro and sauce. Wrap tortillas over and serve.

Optional toppings may include:

sour cream

sliced avocados

grilled onions & peppers

*Tomatillo Sauce

Makes one cup 

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1/2 pound tomatillos, cut into quarters

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1/2 small sweet onion, chopped

2 serrano chili’s, stem and seeds removed

1 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped

1 avocado, peeled and deseeded

juice of one lime

1 teaspoon sea salt

In a food processor mix tomatillo, garlic and onion. Add cilantro, avacado, salt and lime juice. Puree until smooth. Serve with Warm Chipolte Chips or use as a topping sauce.

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Strawberry Cornbread Shortcake

Celebrating Chef George's 24th Anniversary on PBS

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This Southern version of strawberry shortcake is baked in a black iron skillet, which gives it a crunchy crust, the perfect foil for berries and sweetened whipped cream. Using cake flour will give the shortcake a lighter, more tender texture. And if you have any strawberries left over you may want to try my Rosé Sangria from George Hirsch Lifestyle

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Strawberry Cornbread Shortcake

Makes 6 - 8 servings

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For the Cornbread:

1 cup cornmeal

1 cup cake flour or all-purpose flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup milk

2 eggs. lightly beaten

1/4 cup sweet butter, melted

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

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For the whipped cream:

1 cup heavy cream

2 Tablespoons confectioners’ sugar

2 pints mixed fresh strawberries and optional blueberries

1/2 pint fresh blueberries

Granulated sugar, if necessary

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Strawberry Shortcake, Hirsch Media image

Preheat oven or grill to medium temperature or 375 degrees F. 

In a medium bowl combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a small bowl combine the milk, eggs, butter, vanilla and cinnamon and mix well. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until no particles of the dry ingredients remain. Do not over mix.

Spoon the mixture into a well-greased, 8-inch, black iron skillet or cake pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool the cornbread 5 minutes in the pan; remove and cool completely on a rack.

Beat the heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add the confectioners’ sugar and continue beating until peaks are stiff. Wash the strawberries and pat dry gently with a paper towel. Cut half of the strawberries into slices and leave the rest whole. If the berries are not sweet, toss with a small amount of granulated sugar. 

Slice the cornbread in half horizontally and spread the lower half with half the whipped cream and sliced strawberries and blueberries. Replace the top half and cover with remaining whipped cream and berries.

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Cone Maker

Celebrating Chef George's 24th Anniversary on PBS

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It's that time of year, ice cream cone season. The pizzelle maker is a way to make the ice cream cone experience meglio; meaning better in Italian.

The pizzella, known to be one of the oldest cookies originates from Abruzzo, Italy. The waffle cookie is made from a simple batter; making a popular treat during Christmas + Easter seasons. And it is also common for the pizzella to be rolled into cigar like shape and filled with cannoli cream.

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Pizzelle

Makes about 2 dozen pizzelle

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Thin, crisp cookies called pizzelle can be transformed into irresistible ice cream cones or rolled into small shells for filling.

3 eggs, beaten

3/4 cup pure cane granulated sugar

8 Tablespoons sweet butter, melted

2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon Anise, Sambuca, or Amaretto

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until pale yellow and whisk marks remain in the batter, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the melted butter, the Sambuca, vanilla, lemon zest, and mix.

Mix together the flour and baking powder. Fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture in two stages, folding each addition just until blended. 

Heat pizzelle maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Brush lightly with melted butter and spoon about 1 Tablespoon of the batter onto the pizzelle maker. Cook according to the manufacturer's instructions until golden brown. Remove and place pizzelle on cooling rack. Repeat steps with remaining batter.

If making cannoli shells or bowls form warm wafer cookies over forms while still warm. Allow to fully cool prior to filling.

George's GOOD STUFF PICK: Chef's Choice Pizzelle Maker

George's GOOD STUFF PICKS

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13 EPISODES on 4 HD-DVD Disk Set
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Making of a Great Salad

Celebrating Chef George's 24th Anniversary on PBS

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Tune-in GHL CreateTV Wed 8:30AM/2:30PM, Sun 8:30AM est

Les Salades Composées

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George's Garden Mesclun Greens

The best salad is not complicated at all, but made with the freshest possible greens and garnishes. Les Salades composées or mixed green salad can be made with from an infinite list, the only consideration is freshness. But you say you bought it fresh. Just because you purchased from the fresh bin at the market does not guarantee the pick date. Consider the source and how far did that head of lettuce travel? 

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George's Garden Sweet and Neat Cherry Tomatoes

Substitute ingredients at will when shopping or picking fresh. 

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George's Garden Snap "Sugar Daddy" Peas

My dad was a Master Gardener, and fresh veggies was always steps away. Here’s inspiration for a salad I prepared today and served from my garden-to-plate in under 5 minutes.

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Chef George's Salad Simples

Salade Simple

Sugar Snap Peas, steam 30 seconds, shock in cold water

Mixed Mesclun Greens

Arugula

Red Kale

Sweet and Neat Cherry Tomatoes

Juice 1/2 lemon

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil 

pinch sea salt + a few sprigs fresh mint leaves

Add lemon juice, olive oil, mint and salt in bowl. Mix well. Add all above ingredients, toss and serve immediately.

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