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Archive for October 13th, 2019

Climate Change Is Killing Your Low-Carb Diet

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Tom Philpott writes in Mother Jones:

Of all the insults climate change hurls at our food supply—from more severe droughts and floods in key agriculture regions to declining yields of staple crops—the most insidious may involve a steady decline in the quality of all the plants we eat.

That’s the startling message of a growing weight of research led by Irakli Loladze, a mathematical biologist with joint appointments at the Bryan College of Public Health in Nebraska and Arizona State University. On the latest episode of Bite—the introduction to our new series, “Eating in Climate Chaos“—I caught up with Loladze to learn more about this slow-motion nutritional train wreck and what we can do about it.

Plants are very flexible in their chemical composition, Loladze explained. When the air that surrounds them is richer in CO2, they use it to synthesize more carbohydrates, including starches and sugars, which are then stored in plant cells. Essentially, more carbon in the air means more carbs in plants, and these carbs then dilute the other beneficial chemicals taken up and/or synthesized by the plants.

Loladze asked me to consider my breakfast on the morning of our interview, which was centered on a piece of toast. Citing a 2004 study led by Lewis Ziska, then a US Department of Agriculture researcher, now a professor at Columbia University, Loladze said that the wheat I consumed that day contained lower levels of a wide variety of nutrients than the wheat that people were consuming decades ago. It had less protein, and also fewer of “nearly all the essential minerals—calcium, magnesium, zinc, iron, potassium, and copper,” he said.

And what’s true for humans is also true for all the herbivorous and omnivorous animals that rely on wild plants for nutrients. They’re getting less of them now, too, he said, and the deficit moves up the food chain, from the rabbit nibbling on weeds to the bobcat that eats that rabbit. The effect has already shown up in cows, which are gobbling up grasses with lower levels of vital nutrients, which has forced the beef industry to add mineral supplements to cattle rations.

Interestingly, the drop in these chemicals has no effect on the plants themselves. “It’s not like plants are hurting” from the extra CO2, he said. “They have mechanisms to be flexible, and they just store more” carbohydrates. “Plants aren’t the least concerned about the quality of our nutrition—we eat them, we’re kind of their enemies. So diluting the quality of their consumers’ food is something that plants really don’t mind at all.”

In a paper published in 2018, Loladze and a team including US Department of Agriculture and University of Washington researchers found that increasing CO2 concentrations had diminished the nutritional quality of rice, causing significant drops in protein, iron, zinc, as well as vitamins B1, B2, B5, and B9. But research on carbon dioxide concentration and food quality gets very little funding, Loladze noted, and at least under President Donald Trump, is usually buried by the US Department of Agriculture. Rather than sound the alarm about the results of a study revealing that a crop that serves as a crucial staple for 600 million people in low-income countries worldwide is deteriorating, the USDA declined to publicize it, and convinced the University of Washington not to, either, as Politico’s Helena Bottemiller reported in June. Loladze told me that in Trump’s USDA, there’s an “implicit directive not to promote agriculture research related to climate change.”

Meanwhile, of course, we keep burning fossil fuels, spewing more carbon into the air, which in turn gets taken up by the plants we eat, diluting the vital nutrients with loads of carbs. I asked Loladze what we can do about it, given that global carbon emissions show no sign of dropping anytime soon. He said that regenerative farming practices, as well as adding certain minerals to soil, can counteract at least some of the carbon dilution. Right now, he said, we pay farmers for yield—they’re rewarded for total output, not for the amount of nutrients in their crops.

“If we want to make our food more nutritious, we should . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

13 October 2019 at 2:01 pm

Flour power: meet the bread heads baking a better loaf

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Why on the whole it’s been easy to give up bread. Wendell Stevenson writes in the Guardian:

The best thing since sliced bread turns out not to be sliced bread. Our supermarket loaf, which accounts for 80% of all the bread bought in the UK, is sweetish, soft and pappy. The ingredients listed on the plastic sleeve include added E-numbers, enzyme “improvers”, extra gluten, protein powders, fats, emulsifiers and preservatives. It is baked according to the Chorleywood process (named after the location of the lab where it was invented) developed in the 1960s for speed, from grain that has been milled between steel rollers, removing the germ where the oils and nutrients reside, and the bran husk where the fibre is, leaving only the endosperm, a pure starch so nutritionally void that by UK law vitamins must be added back into white flour.

Mechanised food factories demand ingredients that are standard, stable and easy to transport, and make products that are standard, stable and easy to transport. New wheats have been bred for high yields and high protein content that require inputs of chemical fertilisers and pesticides. To increase efficiency, hedgerows and copses have been eliminated and farmland agglomerated into increasingly larger tracts of monoculture.

From soil to plastic-packaged loaf, industrialised breads are the end product of 100 years of innovation in agriculture, manufacturing and transport, all of which prioritises efficiency and cost over nutrition and taste. Bread is the most-bought food item in the UK, but the supermarket loaf is just part of a basket of highly processed foods that we are now beginning to understand is making us fat, sick and allergic.

While the big bakeries may market brown loaves under homely monikers such as farmhouse, wholegrain and multiseed, these are often distinctions without much meaning. The basic ingredient of highly processed flour is the same, even if bran or other sources of fibre are added back into the mix. More research is needed, but there is increasing evidence to suggest that gluten intolerance (not to be confused with coeliac disease, which means people cannot process gluten at all) could be caused by the extra gluten that is often added to mass-produced wholewheat products, and that the old-fashioned longer proving time – the resting time that allows yeasts to ferment the dough and make it rise – is a key factor in rendering wholegrains more digestible.

Good bread needs no more than four ingredients: flour, yeast, water and salt. Wheats were once regional and adapted to the land; grain was milled locally and often baked as wholegrain flour into dense loaves. In Britain and the US, most of us have not eaten this kind of bread in so many generations there is no longer even a folk memory of what it tasted like. The desire for lighter and whiter bread is steeped in history: finer, paler, sifted flour was more expensive and the province of the rich, and as such has been a enduring trend, even as flour became a bland and cheap commodity, often bleached to make it even whiter.

But in the past couple of decades, new movements have begun to challenge the prevailing food culture. In the early 2000s, activist and journalist Michael Pollan wrote about how what we eat had lost its link with the land and the farmer. Leading the revolt against processed food, in 2010, Pollan came up with the line that became a catchphrase: “Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognise as food.” Dan Barber, a chef on a mission to bring back the links between sustainable farming and taste and nutrition, delivered a Ted Talk in 2008 in which he described modern industrial agriculture as “an insult to the basic laws of nature”. He and others have popularised the farm-to-table movement that is changing people’s eating habits, encouraging farmers to grow varieties for deliciousness over yield, efficiency of transport and shelf life.

In 2011, the geneticist Stephen Jones founded the Bread Lab in Washington, bringing farmers, millers, brewers and bakers together to develop new grains that emphasised taste. In 2014, Jones suggested the supermarket loaf should be called “American” or “processed bread”, to distinguish its mass-produced identity and nutritional characteristics. He told me he does not like to be in the same room as white flour. Meanwhile, a sourdough movement bubbled up in San Francisco, championing the resurgence of the traditional method of leavening bread using natural starters that harness a complex web of ambient bacteria and fungi, rather than strong modern yeasts bred to inject air into almost anything.

The great food writer Julia Child once said British white bread tasted “like Kleenex”. Maybe that is why we load our white sliced toast with so much jam and chocolate spread and peanut butter. Wholegrain, sourdough bread is a very different beast; crunchy, crusty, chewy, with a complex taste that is rich, nutty and tangy. Quite often, I find a couple of thick slices, spread with a generous swathe of butter, a satisfying lunch.

The revival of ancient varieties of wheat is inspiring a new movement of agronomists, farmers, millers and bakers in the UK. They are coming together to develop and grow new kinds of wheat that do not need dousing with chemicals, to mill the grain in such a way as to keep taste and nutrition intact, and to bake loaves that are delicious and healthy. In the process, these artisans want to challenge the dominance of chemical agriculture and the supermarket loaf, to establish a new kind of supply chain that links our diet to nature and creates healthy communities.

Bread is a basic foodstuff. It is our land and our kitchen table, family tradition and religious celebration. Our daily bread is our daily life; it is economics – breadwinner, breadbaskets, breadlines; it is politics – upper crust, bread and circuses, grist for the mill. As this group of growers, millers and bakers are demonstrating, bread can be revolution, too.

In the 1960s, while we were falling for the abundance of postwar produce and the convenience of the supermarket, one British plant pathologist was battling with mould. As a young researcher in East Anglia, Martin Wolfe specialised in barley mildew. At the time, the prevailing view was that science could improve on nature’s design; agronomy focused on breeding grains that would produce the highest yields, and developing fertilisers and pesticides to encourage and protect them.

Wolfe began to see that as soon as a new variety of barley was introduced, pathogens adapted to find a way to attack it; as soon as a new fungicide was formulated, the pathogen reacted by developing resistance to it. He realised that nature was always going to win the race.

He was single-minded, driven, almost obsessive; his family complained that he was difficult to call away from his desk for dinner. He understood earlier than most that adding more chemicals was not a sustainable answer, and looked for different ways to grow healthy crops. He experimented with breeding varieties carrying different resistance genes. When he planted out his new varieties and mixtures, he found that infection levels fell.

In the 70s, Wolfe worked with East German scientists who wanted to reduce their use of expensive foreign pesticides. By the end of the 80s, almost all their spring barley (an important crop, because the East exported malted barley to the West German brewing industry for hard currency) was being grown according to Wolfe’s techniques. But when the Berlin Wall came down, they were encouraged, like other farmers in western Europe, via subsidies and promises of high yields, to use chemical fertilisers.

“I’ve always felt like a bit of an outsider,” Wolfe admitted in an interview. He was a scientist, and at first sceptical of the organic movement that emerged in the 80s, which he felt was turning back the clock. His priority was breeding new crops to tackle the environmental challenges of the future. Over the decades, Wolfe became convinced that diversity – the very thing that modern agriculture was eliminating with its herbicides and monoculture – was the key to resistance. When a pathogen attacked a genetically homogenous crop, it could wipe out a whole field.

As he approached retirement, Wolfe wanted to put some of the new ideas about mixed farming practices into use. Agroforestry had begun to gain ground in the 70s when Phil Rutter, an American plant breeder, asked a big question: if nature’s dominant agriculture was trees – perennials – why had man spent 10,000 years developing annual crops? Rutter was convinced that trees such as hazel and chestnut could provide as much nutrition as cereals without having to be resown every year. His motto was: “The future of the world is nuts.”

In 1994, Wolfe bought two meadows and a low-ceilinged long house in Suffolk called Wakelyns, which had a been a pig farm, then a dog-breeding site. Wolfe drew up elaborate plans for avenues of hazel, willow and a mixture of fruit, nut and timber trees. In the lanes in between the trees, he would grow annual crops: vegetables, cereals, legumes. Wakelyns was always imagined as an experimental agroforestry farm, “a rather expensive personal hobby”, as his son, David, put it, not a going concern. It soon became a centre for real research.

At first, the saplings, planted in mud with protective plastic rabbit-proof sleeves, looked thin, vulnerable and unimpressive. Visiting farmers shook their heads, wondering why land was being wasted by planting trees on it. “No experiment ever fails,” Wolfe liked to say. As the trees grew and projects proceeded, visitors were drawn to Wakelyns to see for themselves one of the best examples of agroforestry in Europe. Wolfe walked them through his lanes of crops, his white hair glowing like a nimbus, backlit by the sun, explaining the how the trees, with their long roots, were able to draw nutrients from deep in the soil, which the annual crops also benefited from, via fungal networks in the soil. “There is an idea that crops suffer from competition with trees,” he told one interviewer, “but it is not true – they are sheltered and protected by trees.”

In 2000, Wolfe created a very special crop. With the help of plant breeders and the scientists from the Organic Research Centre, Wolfe took 20 varieties of wheat that had been doing well under low-input conditions in the UK, half chosen for their quality – their high protein and gluten contents – half for their high yield, and cross-bred them every which way, resulting in 190 new crosses. Normally, a breeder would look at these plants and select for the traits they wanted. But this time seeds from all 190 were thrown together in a field, grown, harvested and reseeded together for several years. Wolfe called it YQ, for “yield” and “quality”.

Whereas selection ordinarily narrowed the genetic pool, as with inbreeding dogs, this method maintained it. The genetic diversity in this crop meant the wheat was not only resistant to pathogens, but also tolerant of varying growing conditions. The yield of YQ was never going to match that of high-yield wheat in a good year, but over time, Wolfe showed, its yields through wet or dry or pestilential years, when whole fields of homogenous wheat could be wiped out, were compellingly consistent.

Wolfe milled his YQ grain into flour in a small electric stone mill in his barn. His wife, Ann, made cakes and pastry with it, and everyone loved its rich, nutty taste. But Wolfe had not yet found a baker who would turn it into bread.

Last February, I drove north to meet one of the foremost of a new generation of British artisanal bakers – Kim Bell, who started The Small Food Bakery in Nottingham five years ago and, in 2018, won a prestigious BBC Food and Farming award. I found Bell cleaning up at the end of the day. Hale, with floury hands, and her hair tied up in a cloth bandana, she gave me a bottle of house-made rhubarb kefir as she finished vacuuming the ovens. She is a proper baker – a mix of passion . . .

Continue reading. And do read the the whole thing. There’s a lot more.

Written by Leisureguy

13 October 2019 at 9:06 am

Fort Worth police officer fatally shoots woman in her home while checking on an open front door

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What’s with white Texas police shooting African-American people to death in their own homes? Derek Hawkins reports in the Washington Post:

A white Fort Worth police officer fatally shot a black woman in her home early Saturday morning, firing through a bedroom window while responding to a call about an open door at the residence, police said.

Officers were dispatched to the house in the city’s Hillside Morningside neighborhood at 2:25 a.m. Saturday after receiving an “open structure” call, according to a statement from the Fort Worth Police Department. A neighbor told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram he dialed a non-emergency line and requested a welfare check when he noticed that the door was ajar and the lights were on.

While searching the outside of the house, police said, an officer saw someone standing near a window. “Perceiving a threat the officer drew his duty weapon and fired one shot striking the person inside the residence,” police said.

Atatiana Jefferson, 28, was pronounced dead on the scene, according to police, who said the officers provided emergency medical care.

Body camera footage released by police Saturday shows two officers walking quietly around the side of the house and peering through two screen doors, then moving down a driveway into a backyard.

One officer approaches a closed first-floor window and shines a flashlight inside, then swiftly raises his gun. “Put your hands up! Show me your hands!” he yells. A split-second later, he fires a shot through the window. He does not identify himself as an officer in the footage.

Along with the video, police released images of a firearm officers said they found at the scene, but did not indicate whether Jefferson was holding the weapon or positioned near it when the officer opened fire. Officials did not release the officer’s name, describing him only as a white male who has been with the department since April 2018. He will be placed on administrative leave pending an investigation, according to the department.

The shooting comes at a time when relations between law enforcement and black residents in the Dallas and Fort Worth area are already under strain following the recent trial of Amber Guyger, a white former police officer who shot and killed her unarmed black neighbor, Botham Jean, in 2018.

Earlier this month, following an emotionally-charged courtroom saga that drew nationwide attention, a Dallas jury convicted Guyger of murder and sentenced her to 10 years in prison for killing Jean, whom she shot after mistaking his apartment for her own. Days after the sentencing, Joshua Brown, a key witness in the case, was shot and killed, stoking rumors that he was targeted because of his testimony. Police attributed Brown’s death to a drug deal gone bad and emphatically denied a connection to the Guyger case, but that has not quelled concerns from some local officials and activists, who have called for an independent investigation, as The Washington Post has reported.

It is not clear yet whether the officer who shot Jefferson will face criminal charges. Police said they will turn over body camera footage and other evidence from the scene to the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Office, which will decide whether to prosecute.

Lee Merritt, a prominent civil rights attorney in the Dallas area who said he is representing Jefferson’s family, said the officer never should have opened fire. Jefferson was playing video games with her 8-year-old nephew when she heard what she thought was a prowler outside the bedroom window, Merritt wrote in a Facebook post Saturday. When Jefferson went to the window to see what was happening, he wrote, the officer shot her.

Merritt described Jefferson as a “beautiful peaceful woman” who had graduated from Xavier University and worked in pharmaceutical equipment sales. He said her mother had recently fallen ill and that Jefferson was taking care of the house while she was in the hospital. “There was no reason for her to be murdered. None,” he said. “We must have justice.”

Merritt is also currently representing the families of Jean and Brown in Dallas.

Jefferson’s neighbor, 62-year-old James Smith, said he called police to the house in the early hours of Saturday because he thought it was unusual that the doors were open and the lights were on at that time of night. He told the Star-Telegram that he knew Jefferson and her nephew were home alone and wanted to make sure they were all right.

When officers arrived, Smith said, they parked around the corner, out of view. Shortly after, he heard the gunshot and watched several more officers run in, he told the Star-Telegram.

“I’m shaken. I’m mad. I’m upset. And I feel it’s partly my fault,” Smith said. “If I had never dialed the police department, she’d still be alive.” . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

13 October 2019 at 8:08 am

Pressed picnic sandwiches

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Back in June 2003 Regina Schrambling wrote a column in the LA Times about how most sandwiches don’t work well on a picnic (or on a plane) because they spill their contents so readily from the open sides. She writes:

What works for me is one that can be made large and cut down to tidy size when it’s time to eat. I owe my solution to Elizabeth David, the most inspired culinary thinker of the last century. In her book “Summer Food,” she includes a 1932 recipe for a shooter’s sandwich, meant to be taken on hunting trips with nothing more than a knife (well, a flask of whiskey and water too). It’s the perfect model for make-ahead, slice-to-order road food.

You first grill a steak, season it copiously and stuff it into a hollowed-out loaf of bread with a few grilled mushrooms for juice and flavor. You then wrap the whole assemblage in butcher’s paper, tie it with kitchen twine and “let the thing endure pressure for at least six hours.” When it’s finally sliced, you get a solid sandwich, the meat melded to the bread.

It takes more time and work than a BLT, but the result is much more substantial. And it fits right into a picnic basket.

Over the years since I first made this, I’ve constantly tweaked the original recipe. Apparently England in the 1930s had no ciabatta, which makes a far superior casing for the meat since it’s almost all crust and requires no hollowing out. I’ve also found skirt steak is juicier and more flavorful than flank. And I’ve added chipotles for heat, and thyme for spice, although salt and pepper are enough.

This is the very sandwich depicted in the previous post, with the natural variation common when memes reproduce. So to complete the roll-call of highly portable sandwiches, let me extract from her column the recipes:


Total time: 1 hour, plus 2 to 4 hours marinating and 4 hours pressing.
Servings: 8

Note: To blanch the cauliflower and carrot, cook in boiling water for 2 minutes, then plunge into cold water.

1/2 cup pitted green olives, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup pitted oil-packed black olives, coarsely chopped
1 (2-ounce) jar pimentos, drained and coarsely chopped
1 stalk celery, trimmed and minced, about 1/3 cup
1/4 cup cauliflower florets, blanched and minced
1 carrot, peeled, blanched and minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped Italian parsley
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 large round loaf semolina bread
1 cup very finely shredded lettuce
1/4 pound thinly sliced ham
1/4 pound thinly sliced mortadella with pistachios
1/4 pound thinly sliced Genoa salami
6 ounces thinly sliced provolone

  1. Make an olive relish by combining the green and black olives with the pimentos, celery, cauliflower, carrot, garlic, parsley, oregano, vinegar and oil. Stir to blend, then set aside to marinate at least 2 hours, but preferably 4.
  2. Slice the bread in half horizontally. Scoop out some of the bottom part, leaving a retaining wall on all sides. Drain the olive mixture, reserving the liquid. Spread half the relish onto the bread. Top with successive layers of lettuce, ham, mortadella, salami and cheese. Drizzle with a little of the reserved marinade. Spread the remaining olive relish over the layers. Top with the reserved half of the loaf.
  3. Wrap the sandwich in plastic film. Place it on a baking sheet and weight it with something heavy such as an iron skillet or canned tomatoes. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours to compress. Cut into thin wedges to serve.

Each serving: 362 calories; 1,212 mg. sodium; 43 mg. cholesterol; 21 grams fat; 8 grams saturated fat; 26 grams carbohydrates; 17 grams protein; 2 grams fiber.

Chorizo and egg sandwich

Total time: 20 minutes plus 1 hour pressing
Servings: 4

Note: Pea shoots are found fresh in Asian markets.

1 round olive or plain sourdough bread
3 to 4 handfuls pea shoots or stemmed arugula leaves
1/2 pound Gruyere or Cheddar cheese, thinly sliced, divided
6 large eggs
1 tablespoon milk
Salt, pepper
1/4 pound Spanish chorizo, casing removed, diced
1/2 small onion, peeled, halved and very thinly sliced

  1. Slice the bread in half horizontally, leaving 1 side hinged. Carefully hollow out the center of each side, leaving a retaining wall. Place on large sheet of waxed paper or foil. Lay the arugula or pea shoots in the well in the bottom half, then layer half the cheese over that. Set aside.
  2. Beat the eggs with the milk and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Combine the chorizo and onion in a large saute pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Raise the heat slightly and pour in the eggs. Cook, stirring with a spatula, until set but still moist. Using a spatula, lift the cooked egg mixture onto the cheese-lined bread and arrange in an even layer, pressing down to compact. Lay the remaining cheese evenly on top.
  4. Close the top of the bread, pressing down. Wrap the sandwich tightly in paper or foil and weight with cast-iron skillet or other heavy object for 1 hour to compact.
  5. To serve, use a serrated knife to cut into wedges.

Each serving: 659 calories; 984 mg. sodium; 406 mg. cholesterol; 39 grams fat; 39 grams saturated fat; 36 grams carbohydrates; 39 grams protein; 2 grams fiber.

Roasted vegetable sandwich

Total time: 35 minutes plus at least 1 hour pressing
Servings: 4 to 6

2 medium zucchini, scrubbed and trimmed
1 medium eggplant, trimmed and peeled
1 sweet onion ( such as Vidalia or Maui), peeled
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh basil, divided
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
10 sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, coarsely chopped
2 oil-packed anchovies, coarsely chopped
1 baguette
1/2 pound fresh mozzarella

  1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut the zucchini lengthwise into thin slices and place in large bowl. Cut the eggplant and onion in half lengthwise, then crosswise into very thin slices and add to bowl. Add the garlic and half the basil. Drizzle with 4 tablespoons of the oil, then season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss until well mixed and coated.
  2. Transfer the vegetables to 2 large baking sheets. Roast, stirring and turning every 5 minutes, until very soft, 25 to 35 minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.
  3. Combine the tomatoes and anchovies with the remaining basil in a blender. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil and process until chunky, adding more oil to make a spreadable paste.
  4. Slice the baguette lengthwise, leaving one side hinged. Hollow out the center of each side, leaving a retaining wall all around. Spread both sides lightly with the tomato- anchovy mixture. Carefully lay the roasted vegetable mixture evenly in the hollow. Lay the mozzarella in slices or in mounds over the vegetables.
  5. Carefully close the top half of the bread. Using a spatula, press any protruding cheese or vegetables back into the sandwich. Wrap in waxed paper and tie at 2-inch intervals. Top the sandwich with cast-iron skillets or other heavy weights and let it stand at least 1 hour to compact. To serve, use serrated knife to cut into thick slices.

Each serving: 448 calories; 409 mg. sodium; 31 mg. cholesterol; 29 grams fat; 8 grams saturated fat; 35 grams carbohydrates; 13 grams protein; 5 grams fiber.

Shooter’s sandwich

Total time: 30 minutes, plus 6 hours pressing
Servings: 4 to 6
[See also – LG]

10 shiitake mushroom caps, wiped clean
Extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 1/2 pounds skirt steak
2 chopped chipotle chiles with their adobo sauce, or to taste
1 loaf ciabatta, about the same length as the skirt steaks

  1. Heat a grill, a broiler or a large skillet over high heat. Lightly brush the shiitakes with a little oil and season well with salt and pepper. Cook until tender. Sprinkle with the thyme and set aside to cool.
  2. Grill, broil or fry the steak until rare (if frying, use 1 to 2 tablespoons of oil).
  3. While the meat cooks, slice the ciabatta lengthwise, leaving a hinge attached on one side and opening the loaf. As soon as the steak is done, lay it into the bread and season lavishly with salt and pepper. Spread with the chipotle chiles, then with the shiitakes. Fold over the top side of the ciabatta to close. Transfer the sandwich to a double layer of butcher’s or waxed paper. Fold the paper over the sandwich and tie it with kitchen twine at 2-inch intervals. Wrap it with more paper. Place it on a baking sheet and weight it by placing a skillet or heavy cans on top. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours.
  4. To serve, unwrap and slice off sandwiches as needed. Serve with a sharp cheese and chipotle mayonnaise, if you like.

Each serving: 424 calories; 519 mg. sodium; 59 mg. cholesterol; 14 grams fat; 5 grams saturated fat; 42 grams carbohydrates; 31 grams protein; 3 grams fiber.

Written by Leisureguy

13 October 2019 at 7:55 am

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