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BISON FILET & TARRAGON CHIVE BUTTER

This is the ultimate special occasion recipe whether it’s for someone special or you want something easy and elegant for a group. I’m not going to try and deceive people with the idea that Bison filet is affordable. It is not cheap. You’ll probably pay around $34.99 per pound. But it is worth every damn cent. For a lesser expensive option you can go with beef filet instead. It wasn’t long ago I went to Whole Foods with the intention to buy two filets but they were all out. Grass-fed bison filet was my only filet option, um YES PLEASE. FORCE ME, TAKE THE MONEY! No regrets. Every bite was heaven. And that is why I’m sharing this with you. Because I don’t eat steak often, when I do it’s filet. And now, I prefer bison over beef every damn time. UGH damn foodies.

The recipe is very straight forward and takes no time at all to do. The finishing butter is to die for especially if you make Homemade Butter. Because there’s not a whole lot of time required to make this, you could make it extra special by making your own homemade butter in about 15 minutes. Some times putting a little more time and effort into something shows you care. People tend to appreciate that a lot. I know I do. The delectable side dish in the picture is my Maple Capocollo Wrapped Haricot Verts. It’s my absolute favorite to go with the bison filet because it also doesn’t take much time to assemble and you let the oven do all the cooking.

 

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BISON FILET & TARRAGON CHIVE BUTTER
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Ingredients
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Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cover a both sides of the bison filets with a generous amount of sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Let the filets sit until they’re about room temperature.
  2. Using the back of a spoon, soften the butter and mix in the fresh tarragon and chives with a pinch of sea salt. Set aside or refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. Heat an iron skillet over medium-high heat. Drizzle the bottom with olive oil and sear the bison filets about 3 minutes on each side. Then place the iron skillet in the oven at 400 F for about 12-15 minutes for medium rare to medium.
  4. Place the filets on their plate with a dollop of the tarragon chive butter on top. Place aluminum foil on top creating a tent. Let rest for 5 minutes.

WILD BOAR RAGU

I have to start off by saying, don’t let wild boar scare you. It’s just pork but unlike any other. It’s much leaner and has a richer flavor which works perfect for this ragu. A free range animal grazing on a wide variety of food gets more muscle enhancing movement, which generates a deeper, more flavorful meat than an animal confined and raised only on grain; and there are no antibiotics or hormone supplements to worry about with wild animals.

Although, if you prefer to not use wild boar or cannot find it, feel free to use beef, or pork we’re all familiar with. You can also use other wild meats like venison and rabbit too which is commonly used in some parts of Italy. The key is to use a flavorful meat so I wouldn’t suggest ground turkey or chicken. Save those two for something else instead. I typically give it a good four hours to make this at least. Most of that time is letting it simmer down. I’ve used a slow cooker and it works great but at certain points you may need to leave the lid cracked open.

Before I let you go, in case you didn’t notice; this recipe calls for dried porcini mushrooms. Don’t forget you will need that mushroom broth, not just the mushrooms so set it aside. This brings out the earthy rich flavor of the dish entirely. You don’t have to use it but in my opinion it’s a must to pull everything together as one incredible dish. If you happen to tweak the recipe and something amazing came of it, please share!

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WILD BOAR RAGU
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Ingredients
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Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Add the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat with the onions, carrots, and garlic. Stir everything frequently for about 7 minutes until the onions are translucent and softened. Then, add in the chopped porcini mushrooms and tomato paste, stirring often for about 4 minutes.
  2. When the tomato paste turns a dark brick red color, add the meat, porcini broth, and broth. Bring everything to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low allowing it to simmer and reduce.
  3. Once most of the liquid has evaporated add the wine, stir. Let it reduce again.
  4. When the broth has mostly evaporated, add the milk, nutmeg, pepper, and stir well. Bring it back to a simmer, add salt to taste. Bring the heat down to low and cook it down until it’s the consistency you like.
  5. Serve over bucatini and a garnish of Romano cheese.

PEACH AVOCADO SALSA

There really isn’t a whole lot to be said about why everyone should try this recipe at least one time. Especially if you’re a mega lover of peaches. I mean, who doesn’t like salsa? All sorts of salsa? You could keep it safe and use mango instead if you really want to. And it’d be amazing but this is just a whole other level of epic flavor. Trust me!

It’s Spring and Summer is right around the corner. And I’ve been eye balling The Peach Truck peaches at the Nashville Farmers Market as if I’ve been starved for months. And because I waited long enough, I snagged a half bushel of them. LOL Let’s just say I’ve made a lot of things with peaches so far. And you better believe I’ll be sharing them here! If you’re in Nashville, you must check out the Nashville Farmers Market and at the very least get an awesome brown bag of peaches from The Peach Truck.

Aside from diving into this pile of amazing with tortilla chips, I pan seared on high heat really nice center cut filets of cod (halibut is even better) with sea salt and pepper then finished a few minutes in the oven. Then topped the whole thing with a pile of the Peach Avocado Salsa. There are no words. Here’s a crappy picture of it… I was too lazy enjoying the food to go grab the nice camera LOL!


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PEACH AVOCADO SALSA
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Instructions
  1. Toss everything together in a large bowl. It's best when you let it sit for at least an hour in the fridge.

THAI INSPIRED SHRIMP SLAW

There’s so much I can say about this recipe! Bare with me, I’ll try to keep it simple. The “salad” itself is Thai inspired with the intention to add any more of your favorite Thai flavors into the mix. Like fresh mango! Or your favorite chopped nuts. As much as I love all the comfort foods, sweets, high carb foods like almost everyone else; I really do try to keep a balance here on the food blog. A little indulgence once in a while won’t hurt. It takes discipline with a sheer desire to want to feel good by way of adopting a healthy lifestyle. So when I share a super healthy recipe, I make sure I make it very flavorful so that you realize that healthy doesn’t have to be boring! This Thai Inspired Salad with Shrimp is the epitome of that… when something is vibrant in presentation in it’s natural state, healthy, flavorful who wouldn’t want to at least give it a try?!

I made this recipe with the intention to get people interested in giving an array of vegetables a try. Society today is starving of fresh veggies in their diet simply because people go so many years without it that when they eat it, it tastes bland and unsatisfying. Eating vegetables daily helps with regular bowel elimination, lowers blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, keeps the colon healthy, keeps the liver and gallbladder happy as well. You’ll find several different veggies prepped fine just like a coleslaw but tastier! It’s actually even better after a few hours or overnight in the fridge. Now here’s the best part about this recipe that I try to achieve with most of the stuff I make…

This salad is so multi-purpose, you can add a different citrus instead of lime. Use a different kinds of nuts or seeds. Add spices like ground ginger for a bigger kick. Throw in mango or papaya. Throw in some cubed avocado. Toss it with some of your favorite leaf lettuce. And you most certainly do not have to stick to shrimp. Use any of your favorite fish. I love any white or light fish baked or grilled with this. Right on top. Let the fish straight out of the oven warm up the veggies to get all the flavors marinating more. And if you’re not a seafood kind of person go for chicken, turkey, beef or any wild game. You do want YOU want.

Confession. I have made a hot dog… it was a turkey hot dog made of all white breast meat (that was my compromise) and topped it with this salad, with some pickles. It was THAT good. I kind of want to slather a good buffalo burger with it… spice meat with some traditional Thai spices. Go big, think creative, make the healthiest foods taste the best it ever could. It’s always possible. I’m a firm believer with the right preparation and the right spices you can make anyone enjoy their least favorite veggie. Okay, I’ll stop there. Seriously though, let me know how you chose to incorporate this recipe. I love all ideas. Enjoy!

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THAI INSPIRED SHRIMP SLAW
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DRESSING
SLAW
SHRIMP
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Ingredients
DRESSING
SLAW
SHRIMP
Instructions
  1. Place everything for the dressing into a blender and run it on high until everything is blended well.
  2. Toss all the veggies for the slaw with the dressing in a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. Mix all the spices together with the shrimp gently in a large bowl. Drizzle a large pan with olive oil over medium-high heat, toss the shrimp and let cook a few minutes until they’re pink and curled. Set aside to cool.
  4. Serve the slaw with shrimp on top.
Recipe Notes

This dish is great without shrimp but feel free to add any other seafood, poultry, or red meat.

BEEF & ARUGULA PASTA

You can spend all the time in the world cooking in the kitchen making amazing food but you can also do so in a short amount of time too. This is one of those go-to dishes for something quick but elegant. I LOVE using filet mignon for this recipe the most but you can use any kind of cut you like. I’ve tried flank steak and it works fantastic so long as you slice against the grain. Also, if you’re watching your red meat intake, feel free to use chicken breast instead.

I’ve made slightly different variations of this recipe such as caramelized onions or none at all, saute mushrooms for more heartiness. You can replace the arugula with fresh baby spinach instead. It’s just as amazing. And as always, feel free to add or replace with any other of your favorite veggies. There’s no wrong way to make it taste good!

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BEEF & ARUGULA PASTA
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Ingredients
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Instructions
  1. Fill a large pot with water and bring to boil. Cook the pasta according to the directions on the packaging.
  2. In a bowl whisk together the balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, the remaining herbes de provence, salt and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Cover the steak both sides with 1 tablespoon of herbes de provence, garlic powder, salt, and pepper by patting it firmly into the meat.
  4. In an iron skillet on medium-high heat, drizzle the bottom of the skillet with olive oil and sear the steak on both sides for about 5 - 7 minutes on each side depending on the thickness of the steak. Then, let it finish in the oven at 400 F degrees for about 5 - 15 minutes depending on the thickness. When done, let the steak rest for about 10 minutes.
  5. In a large, deep sauté pan cook the onions in olive oil until they become translucent. Add the sun-dried tomatoes and sauté for another 5 minutes or until the onions are caramelized.
  6. Slice the steak thin into bite sized pieces.
  7. Toss the cooked pasta, steak, and arugula in with the onions and sun-dried tomatoes. Then add the balsamic vinegar mixture together. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil generously all across the top, about 1/4 cup and gently fold everything together until everything is well coated in the balsamic sauce.
  8. Serve with pecorino Romano cheese.