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Oriental pork GOPM

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Layers from the bottom up:

1/2 c pearled barley
1 large bunch scallions, chopped including green part
1 carrot diced
1/3 c parsley chopped fine
1/3 c chopped celery
2 pork chops, bone removed and cut into chunks
6-8 cloves garlic, minced
1.5″ section of fresh ginger root, grated
1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped (should have gone with the whole pepper)
1 packet of sugar snap peas, probably a little over a cup, chopped


2 tsp soy sauce
1.5 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
1.5 Tbsp Bragg’s Ginger and Sesame Vinaigrette
good couple of dashes of Red Boat fish sauce

In 450ºF oven for 45 minutes, remove and let sit on stove top 15 minutes, serve.

Nice and orientalish. I just realized that I could include in the pour-over things like Hoisin sauce.

Written by LeisureGuy

2 July 2017 at 6:37 pm

Posted in Food, GOPM, Recipes

Time for more Glorious One-Pot Meals

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As regular readers know, I like a glorious one-pot meal, a description that serves as the title for Elizabeth Yarnell’s book. The blog now has quite a collection of various GOPM recipes, usually made on the fly.

Fair warnings about the book:

  1. The recipes are extremely bland. Crushed red pepper can help, but the idea and approach are so simple that you will quickly be making up your own recipes to use what you have on hand.
  2. She and her husband are, I assume, triathletes. She says a 2-qt GOPM serves two. For normal people it will serve four—and indeed she for some reasons uses four servings of rice in her recipes. I don’t use rice at all, but rather pearled barley, and I use 1/3 cup of the uncooked barley for the 2-qt pot.

Although Yarnell recommends enameled cast-iron, I find that plain cast iron works well, and the Stansport 2-qt cast-iron dutch oven is $20 at Walmart. You can easily remove the two wire handles (and easily replace them if you every want to hang the pot over a fire). Season it first (rub the interior with some fat, including the bottom of the lid, and put it in a 300ºF oven for half an hour or so). I use beef fat, but you could just rub it with a piece of bacon.

The enameled pot might be easier to clean, but plain cast iron cleans up readily with hot water and the Ringer, a piece of chain mail used as a scrubber. I wouldn’t use it on an enameled pot, but on plain cast iron it works like a charm, partly because it is flexible so you can feel when there is a spot with something stuck, so you know where to scrub. I clean the pot using just hot water, no detergent. Reseason the pot as needed. You can always start over by putting the empty pot in a self-cleaning oven and running a cycle. Rinse it out well, reseason, and it’s as good as new.

Friday will see another GOPM.

Written by LeisureGuy

28 June 2017 at 4:18 pm

Posted in Daily life, Food, GOPM

First GOPM in a while: Lamb with broccolini

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I use the 1.5 qt cast-iron Staub pan, but you could probably use a 2-qt cast-iron dutch oven. You would just use a few more of each ingredient—e.g., more scallions, 1/3 cup pearled barley instead of 1/4 cup, a whole diced carrot instead of a half. Since you build the dish a layer at a time, you can just add enough more of whatever to make a layer of the depth you want.

In the 1.5 qt pan, I added these ingredients, a layer of each, beginning with the scallions:

3 scallions, chopped (green and white)
good pinch of salt
several grindings of pepper
1/4 cup pearled barley
1/2 large carrot, diced
10 oz lamb flank (1 package), cut up
4 cloves garlic, minced
chopped mint
chopped broccolini
halved cherry tomatoes
salt and more pepper

I had to mash it down a bit to get all to fit. One bunch of broccolini was plenty and I had some stems left over.

Put the following in a small glass jar, shake well, and pour over:

1.5 tablespoon Crosse & Blackwell Mint sauce
1.5 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
a dash or few of mint bitters

Cover, put in 450ºF oven and let cook for 45 minutes.

Remove, let pot stand, still covered, for 15 minutes.

Serve and eat. It was quite tasty.

Update: I just remembered I have mint bitters (one by the Fee Brothers). Next time I’ll add a dash or two of that to the pour-over.

Written by LeisureGuy

8 April 2017 at 6:49 pm

Posted in Food, GOPM, Recipes

Lamb sausage one-pot meal

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I’m really pleased that I finally realized that the 2-quart cast-iron dutch oven holds four meals and not two (unless you are physically quite active). I noticed the meal tonight (1/4 of the pot) was reasonable in size and quite filling, not to mention extremely tasty.

Pour a little olive oil in the empty 2-qt cast iron pot, then with your hands coat the sides and also the inside of the lid. Then layers, from the bottom up:

4 chopped shallots
a little chopped celery (perhaps 1/4 c)
3 chopped domestic white mushrooms (about the size of a squash ball)
1/3 c hulled barley (I think next time I’ll go to 1/2 c)
1 lb lamb sausage (Istanbul sausage from Whole Foods: spicy)
minced garlic
chopped fresh fennel (this time the fronds, not the bulb: bulb next time)
1/2 medium zucchini, diced
4 slices Italian eggplant, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
about 16 pitted Kalamata olives, halved
crumbled feta cheese (sheep and goat milk)
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 lemon, ends cut off and then diced

If you make one of these one-pot meals, you’ll notice that it doesn’t take much quantity to create a layer.

You might wonder why I count this as a low-carb recipe, given the 1/3 c hulled barley. But 1/3 c hulled barley = 12g, which amounts  8.8g total carbs, of which 2g is dietary fiber, so roughly 7g net carbs for four servings: <2g per serving. That’s low carb.

The lemon contributes 12g carbs – 5g dietary fiber, for 7g net carbs: again <2g per serving.

The pour-over:

2 Tbsp Bragg vinaigrette
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp red-wine vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp Dijon mustard
3/4 tsp smoked paprika

Shake well in a little jar and pour over the top.

There was a little extra liquid, but it is quite tasty, so no problem. But I’ll cut back on the added liquid. I imagine the tomatoes and lemon contribute a fair amount of liquid.

We each ate 1/4 of the pot, so the remaining 1/2 pot will be dinner for tomorrow—and a very tasty dinner it will be.

I’m very glad to get back to these meals. I like how they make improvisation easy, how they have a lot of vegetables while you can easily limit the amount of starch and protein, and how very tasty they are.

You really should try it. Cover and cook 45.0 minutes at 450ºF, and then let sit 15 minutes.

I will note that the problem with the Lodge 2-quart cast-iron dutch oven is that it is low and squat, which doesn’t work so well with layering the food. Still, $22.50 isn’t bad. Le Creuset is a better shave, but $200 seems steep.

But check this out: Macy’s has the Martha Stewart Collection Collector’s Enameled Cast Iron 2 Qt. Round Casserole in blueberry for $30 (on sale). Right now that looks like your best bet. (Price varies by color, note.)

The $20 Stansport (formerly Texsport) 2-quart dutch oven is perfect, and it is available at Walmart. I recommend you remove the two wire handles, which is easy; you can reinstall them if you at some point want to hang the pot over a fire. This one is not enameled, so before the first use you should season it: rub inside (including underside of lid) with fat (beef fat, or just a piece of bacon), then leave it in a 300ºF oven for half an hour or so. I find that seasoned and unenameled cast-iron pots are easy to clean, particularly if you use the Ringer, a scrubber made of chain mail. Just use that with hot water, and reseason as needed.

Written by LeisureGuy

29 July 2016 at 6:40 pm

Posted in Food, GOPM, Low carb, Recipes

A 1-person, 1-meal Glorious One-Pot Meal

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When The Wife got into doing GOPM cookery, she didn’t want to make two meals at once, so I got her this 1.25-quart Staub cast-iron saucepot. It’s $119 at link (I paid $80, but Staub was just being introduced at the time). You can also get it from Amazon for $249 if you want.

It’s the same thing: layer the food, cover the pan, cook in the oven at 450ºF for 45 minutes, let cool for 15 minutes, and you have a meal. I’m cooking my lunch now.

For me the appeal comes from several factors:

  1. Only one pot to clean.
  2. Easy to improvise recipes
  3. Easy to assemble meal and—more important—fun to assemble meal
  4. Easy to balance the meal: a little starch, a little protein, lots of fresh vegetables
  5. Cooking requires a timer but no attention
  6. Inevitably extremely tasty

This one by layer from bottom up:

1 shallot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 Tbsp hulled barley
1.5 Tbsp Crosse & Blackwell mint sauce
1 mild Italian sausage (about 3.2 oz: 5 sausages to the pound), cut into pieces
1/2 bunch chopped mint leaves (the rest of the mint)
1/2 medium zucchini, chopped
2 slices Italian eggplant, chopped
1 Roma tomato, diced
1/2 lemon, end cut off, diced

The pour-over:

2 Tbsp Bragg Sesame and Ginger vinaigrette
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

It’s cooling now.

UPDATE: It was very tasty, but I’m thinking that 1 quart of food for a meal, while perhaps fine for runners and triathletes and such, is too much for a sedentary person like myself. A pint is more like it.

So I’m going to use the 1-qt Staub pan for two meals for us, and the 2 quart for 4 meals, 2 of which we eat on the spot, the other two as leftovers.

Written by LeisureGuy

27 July 2016 at 12:31 pm

Posted in Food, GOPM, Recipes

First Glorious One-Pot Meal in quite a while

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I was making Glorious One-Pot Meals (GOPM) quite regularly for a while, but what with one thing and another got out of the habit, although I do like them a lot. For no particular reason other than recipe fatigue, it occurred to me to get back into it because they are extremely easy to improvise once you get the pattern down.

Glorious one-pot meals are built in a 2-quart cast-iron pot, and my favorite is the Staub 2.25-quart round cocotte though the Texsport 2-quart cast-iron Dutch oven works well and is much less costly (around $22, if you can find it). (The Staub runs $190, but I bought it when it was being introduced and got mine for $100.) Elizabeth’s Yarnell’s book calls for a 2-quart Dutch oven (and for some reason she likes Le Creuset, but I find the Staub, which costs less, much better in several ways), but it turns out that 2.25 quarts is a convenient size. (Staub 2.25 quart round cocottes are somewhat hard to find: they seem to have moved to one a pint larger, 2.75 quart. I prefer the 2.25 quart, but the other will work.)

Some people who hear “one-pot meal” think of using a slow cooker, but GOPM is pretty much the opposite: instead of cooking a long time at low heat (typically 8-12 hours at 200ºF), GOPM is cooked for a short time (45 minute + 15 minute rest) at high heat (450ºF). Thus meats that require long slow cooking for tenderness (e.g., oxtails, short-ribs, shanks) would not be suitable in a GOPM.

The ingredients are layered in the pot: reading from the first (bottom) layer up, a typical dish will have:

  1. aromatics (onion, spring onion, green garlic, celery, leeks, shallots, carrots, whatever)
  2. starch (rice, barley, quinoa, egg noodles, cut pasta, tiny potatoes, whatever)
  3. protein (marinated tempeh, chicken, fish, beef, lamb, pork, whatever)
  4. vegetables

After layering the ingredients, about 4-6 Tbsp of liquid is poured over the contents—the “pour-over.” Then the pot is covered and put into a 450ºF oven for 45 minutes, whereupon it is removed to sit for 15 minutes, and—voilà!—dinner for two.

Here’s a more detailed explanation and template.

In her book Yarnell provides a variety of recipes, which are helpful in getting the idea, but the recipes themselves are almost unbearably bland—plus for some reason she always puts in enough rice for 4 servings, not 2: she uses 1 cup of uncooked rice, and one serving is 1/4 cup uncooked rice, so she should use 1/2 cup. I asked why, and it turned out to be simple ignorance on her part. (She is extremely active, so probably burned up the extra carbs without noticing it.) I tend to use 1/3 c rice (or barley) in the pot: a little less than 2 servings, but I follow a low-carb diet.

The meals have always been extremely tasty and they are quite easy (and rather fun) to prepare: you layer the foods, pour over the liquid, and an hour later dinner’s ready.

Here’s the one I made tonight that’s in the oven now. I first rub the interior of the pot (including the bottom of the lid) with olive oil before I begin. The layers, from the first (bottom) layer up:

3 large chopped scallions
2 ribs celery with quite a few leaves, chopped
1/3 c pearled barley
0.67 lb lamb stew meat (actually, little lamb flank steaks that I cut into squares)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c chopped mint
1 medium yellow crookneck squash, diced
4 good slices eggplant (plan was 1 Japanese eggplant, but store didn’t have)
12-15 pitted Kalamata olives, halved
5 oz crumbled feta cheese
3 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 lemon, ends cut off and discarded, then the lemon diced

The pour-over:

2 Tbsp Crosse & Blackwell mint sauce [update: next time use 1 Tbsp]
2 Tbsp Bragg’s vinaigrette salad dressing (Sesame & Ginger, in this case)
1 Tbsp red wine [update: next time skip this]
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp Dijon mustard

I put all that in a little jar, shook it well, and poured it over the top. I might have added smoked paprika if I had thought of it.

I am looking forward to this. I do have more than half an eggplant left over, so I’ll probably make another meal using the rest of the eggplant.

I totally made up this recipe, just thinking of a general lamb/Mediterranean theme.

BTW, in an earlier post you can find Yarnell’s patent for her method.

UPDATE: Extremely tasty. A little more liquid than I like, but very little. I would leave out the 1 Tbsp red wine in the pour-over next time, and perhaps use just 1 Tbsp mint sauce.

Written by LeisureGuy

25 July 2016 at 6:03 pm

Posted in Food, GOPM, Recipes

Dinner tonight

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We’re still meatless. It makes it easier that you can simply skip the whole aisle/section.

Greek eggplant with rice

Modified from Glorious One-Pot Meals

Layers from bottom in my 2.25-qt Staub round cocotte:

Olive oil
1/2 c white rice
2 Tbsp sherry vinegar
allium: e.g., 1 med onion, or 2 large shallots, or 1 leek, or 1 bunch scallions: chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped small
4-5 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano
6-8 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley
Freshly ground black pepper
Small pitted black olives
1/4 c pine nuts
1 medium eggplant, diced
3-4 oz feta cheese, crumbled (I’m using a French goat-milk feta)
1 15-oz can garbanzos/chickpeas, drained and rinsed

She splits stuff up and does two layers. Not for me.

Pour-over will be something like:

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp red-wine vinegar
2 Tbsp red wine
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp smoked paprika
1 tsp ground cumin

Shake well, pour over. 450ºF for 45 minutes.

I got to reading about Calrose rice, quite interesting in itself and I’m definitely buying some, but it also took me to the wide variety of interesting rices from Lundberg. I can’t wait to try a lot of those.

UPDATE: Extremely tasty. Definitely will make this again. For the allium, I chopped two good-sized spring shallots, including the green part. Cut pine nuts to 1/4 cup and half that (2 Tbsp) would probably be enough.

Written by LeisureGuy

2 July 2013 at 5:01 pm

Posted in Food, GOPM, Recipes

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