Oh my goodness, I can’t believe it’s already mid-August! I have two months left of my maternity leave, and I’m trying to soak in every sweet summer minute. I’m also trying to finish my baby girl’s baby scrapbook. I need to get it done before I go back to work, because I know there’s no way I would have time to do it once I’m back at work! I must say, I am really enjoying this whole scrapbooking thing. I mean, I’ve bullet journaled for over a year now, and scrapbooking is kind of similar to that except with photos…and more stickers!
I’m still trying to do meatless Mondays in our household. The husband is still not a fan, but he did request that I try to do a portobello mushroom burger. He figures that if it’s served with fries, it would be a substantial enough meal for him. There used to be a restaurant here in Regina that served a portobello mushroom burger with cream cheese. It was so good, but I haven’t been able to recreate it yet. I can’t even remember the name of the restaurant – it was on Albert St, where Slow Pub is now. Does anyone remember what it was called? This would have been 7-8 years ago.
The marinade on this portobello mushroom recipe is on the savoury/salty side with the balsamic vinegar and soy sauce to give it a meaty flavour, and the Montreal steak spice gives it a meaty taste as well. Portobello mushroom burgers can often be slimy if not cooked properly. I find that you almost have to over grill them a bit and get a good char on them to dry them out. 7-8 minutes on each side on the grill seems to be the right amount of time for me.
I like to top mine with some Swiss cheese, grilled red onions, some spinach and tomatoes. And of course, remember to butter and grill your buns! It makes all the difference!
In our household, our roles and duties are strictly delineated. I do all the cooking. My husband mows the lawn and shovels the snow. I do all the laundry. My husband changes the Diaper Genie (I actually refuse to learn how so that I’ll never have to do it). I do all the grocery and household shopping. My husband builds and fixes all the things. This arrangement may seem traditional but it works for us. When I cook, I’m basically cooking for him and when he builds things, most of the time it’s something for me. Like when I found an old secretary’s desk for sale for $80, and he refinished it for me for Christmas.
Old Secretary’s Desk
Refinished Secretary’s Desk
Refinished Secretary’s Desk
Or like when I said I needed a beer caddy so I can bring a few beers out to the deck, he built me one and he even let me choose which stain colour I wanted.
Which one would you choose?
I chose this one!
And when I said I had no wine storage, he built me a wine rack for above the fridge, complete with a stained glass backing that lights up. I mean, what else can a girl ask for?!
My favourite place in the house
I have never attempted to crossover into any of his duties. I wouldn’t know how to start the lawnmower, I don’t know how to open the Diaper Genie, and I don’t know which shovel to use to shovel the snow. But sometimes, the husband surprises me and cooks or bakes in the kitchen. For my collection of recipes, I have a few of my favourite cookbooks of all time stored in my pantry, and this blog serves as my diary of personal recipes. For him, he has this tattered grey plastic covered notebook that he keeps in the garage, and there are a few of his favourite recipes jotted down in there. I have no idea where he got these recipes from – he says they are either from his mom or from some random place on the Internet.
Anyway, he decided to make a banana bread the other day and it was sooooo good. I was pretty impressed! It was super moist, and it was the perfect snack to have with my morning coffee. Although I appreciate his efforts in the kitchen, this doesn’t mean that I’ll be learning how to change the Diaper Genie any time soon!
I think I’ve said it before but I’ve always been doubtful of slow cooker meals, especially batch cooking in slow cookers. I find that they are usually lacking in flavour and/or texture that can only be achieved by more ‘proper’ cooking methods. I mean, I’ve posted a slow cooker apple cinnamon oatmeal recipe before, but I will admit that I don’t make that recipe anymore. Now that my baby is old enough to play on her own and/or sit and watch me make breakfast for a decent amount of time, I prefer to make individual servings of my morning oatmeal on the stove. However, my sister recently shared with me that she makes ribs in her slow cooker. The secret to her recipe is that she makes her own dry rub for the ribs, and then does not add any additional liquids to the slow cooker – she lets the ribs release and cook in their own juices. If you look up other slow cooker rib recipes, you’ll find that almost all of them tell you to add some sort of liquid to the slow cooker (root beer, water, stock, etc). If you add liquid to the slow cooker, you’re going to get soggy ribs and diluted flavours!
Easy dry rub for the ribs
I gave this recipe a try, and I will admit that this is probably my favourite slow cooker recipe. I like the fact that I can put the ribs in the slow cooker and not worry about it for 6 whole hours. The meat literally falls off the bones, the flavour is strong, and when paired with a quick salad, it makes for a super easy meal. I’ve made this probably half a dozen times already, tweaking the dry rub recipe each and every time and I think I’ve finally got it perfect (thank god, because I think the husband was getting tired of ribs, Caesar salad and potatoes for supper every other day!). I buy the pork back ribs from Co-op and I can usually find a decent sized rack of ribs for around $20.
I haven’t found a wine pairing for these ribs yet. The ribs have a pretty strong flavour due to the dry rub, so I think your best bet will be a cold light beer with this one!
Mix together the dry rub spices in a small bowl and set aside.
Cut the rack into portions of six ribs.
Rub the dry rub on the ribs with your hands, evenly on both sides of the ribs.
Grease your slow cooker (I just use a little olive oil and coat the slow cooker with a paper towel), and arrange the ribs in the slow cooker standing up on their rib ends (the thicker end of the bone on the bottom) with the meaty side facing out. It's okay if the some of the racks overlap one another if you have a small slow cooker.
Cook on high for six hours.
After six hours, line a baking tray with aluminum foil and place the ribs with the meaty side facing up on the tray. Baste with your choice of BBQ sauce and broil in the oven until caramelized (about 5-7 minutes). Careful not to burn them!