Monday, July 30, 2012

Grilled Wahoo with Mango Salsa

Wahoo (ono) is a saltwater fish that inhabits tropical and subtropical seas worldwide. Known to be highly dangerous and powerful, it is a prized game fish among even the best of sports fishermen. Similar to swordfish and shark, wahoo is meaty and substantial enough to lend itself well to grilling and heavy marinating. For this recipe, we marinated wahoo steaks for 1 hour in a bright mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, parsley and basil. Grilled to perfection, these hearty steaks were a great complement to fresh mango salsa. 

 On the side, we served these steaks with roasted Brussels sprouts and a British favorite called "Bubble and Squeak," in honor of the 2012 Olympics. 

Congratulations to Kim Rhode who won her 5th Olympic Gold Medal! Rhode competed through wind and rain this morning, hitting 99/100 clay targets in Women's Skeet Shooting. This is Rhode's 5th consecutive Olympic Gold, going where no athlete has gone before. The entire hunting/gun community is proud.

Servings: 4
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cooking Time: 2-4 minutes
- 24 ounces of wahoo filet
- 1/2 cup of olive oil
- 2 tbs. lemon juice
- 2 tbs. fresh parsley (1 tbs. dried)
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tsp. dried basil
- 2 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper
- 1 tsp. kosher/sea salt
Mango Salsa
- 2 large mangoes, peeled and sliced for grilling
- cayenne pepper, to taste
- kosher/sea salt, to taste
- olive oil, for drizzling
- 1/4 cup of red onion, minced
- 2 tbs. cilantro, chopped
- 3 green onions, white and light green parts chopped
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
- 1/8 cup lime juice
- 1 tbs. olive oil

1. Remove any skin from wahoo. 
We also advise removing any dark meat, which can taste rather "fishy." 
Rinse filet(s) in cold water, then cut across into 1 inch steaks. 
2. In a zip-lock bag, combine all marinade ingredients.  
Place wahoo steaks into marinade. Remove excess air from the bag, seal and give a quick shake to evenly distribute. Refrigerate for 1 hour, shaking halfway through. 
My brother, hard at work in the kitchen. 

3. In a medium bowl, combine 2 tbs. of chopped cilantro, 3 chopped green onions, 1 minced jalapeno and 1/4 cup of minced red onion. Set aside. 

Prepare grill. 

4. Sprinkle sliced mango with salt and cayenne pepper, to taste. Drizzle with olive oil. Grill mangoes for about 1-2 minutes each side, or until slightly charred. 

Remove wahoo steaks from marinade and grill for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until flaky and cooked through.
Mmmm... keep warm.
5. Once mango is cool enough to handle, dice into small pieces. Add to the bowl of red onion, cilantro, etc. Then, mix in 1/4 cup of lime juice and 1 tbs. olive oil. Mix well.  

Add salt and pepper, to taste.

My best friend Briana and me also hard at work in the kitchen. 
Serve wahoo steaks with mango salsa on top. Sooo good!!!

And here's Rick, just drinking... I'm kidding. He's very helpful in the kitchen. 

Rick was trying to imitate Bill Murray's character in the movie Lost in Translation. Hmmm... not quite there yet, honey.

Sweet Tea Vodka from Seagram's, on the rocks. Very good.

We hope you are all having a great summer! This is a fantastic recipe for warm summer evenings. 

*Convenient print button below.

Bubble and Squeak

In celebrating the 2012 Summer Olympics, we decided to make Bubble and Squeak. This is a traditional English dish made from leftover vegetables from a roast dinner. Typically made with potatoes and cabbage, Brussels sprouts are often used as well. It's formed into patties and shallow-fried to form a crust on both sides. Our recipe here is pretty standard. The only differences are that we roasted our Brussels sprouts instead of boiling and added a bit of Hungarian paprika to give the patties an extra something.

Servings: 4
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour
- 1 lb. russet potatoes
- 2 tbs. butter
- 1/2 lb. Brussels sprouts
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 tsp. Hungarian paprika (optional)
- 1/4 cup cornmeal 
- olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Peel potatoes and cut into cubes.
Drop the potatoes in a pot. Submerge with water and add a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, then simmer until potatoes are tender. About 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, wash Brussels sprouts. Discard any discolored leaves and cut off any brown bottoms. Lay on a sheet pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake in a 400 degree F oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until outsides are slightly browned and crispy.

Chop Brussels sprouts. 
3. Once potatoes are tender, drain thoroughly. Return to the pot to dry out. Allow to cool.
Add 2 tbs. of butter, then mash potatoes.
Add chopped Brussels sprouts. 
Then add 1/2 tsp. of Hungarian paprika. Combine all ingredients well. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
4. Form potato mixture into 12 patties. Dust with cornmeal and salt on both sides. 
Heat about 2 tbs. of olive oil in a skillet. Carefully fry Bubble and Squeak for 2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels, and serve immediately. For extra crispy patties, freeze the patties after frying. Then place on a cookie sheet, and bake in a 375 degree oven until heated through and crispy on the outside, 15 minutes.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Trap Shooting

Went trap shooting yesterday at the Prado Olympic Shooting Park. It's been a year since the last time we went. We're by no means experts, but it's always fun to powder some clays!

Prado's shotgun field offers trap, skeet, five stand and league. One round consists of 25 clays. $7.00 per round for trap or skeet. $8.00 per round of five-stand. It's a great place to shoot. Prado was home to the 1984 Olympics.

On an unrelated note... here's a comic from EQ Comics. Click to enlarge. :-D

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Venison Medallions with Whiskey, Mushroom & Horseradish Cream Sauce

I've been going to jury duty, so this recipe is a little late in coming. Our apologies. Just doing my civic duty... which isn't always fun. So, here you are.

Creamy, earthy and zingy, then add a touch of good ol' American whiskey-- our Whiskey, Mushroom and Horseradish Cream Sauce is everything you could ever want in a good steak sauce. This recipe was inspired by a number of things. We basically took Ree Drummond's idea of a whiskey cream sauce, combined that with the concept of stroganoff and then added horseradish to reminisce the classic pairing of prime rib steak. And it really doesn't take too long to make.

Servings: 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 15-20 minutes
- venison tenderloin, enough for 2
- Kosher/sea salt, to taste
- freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

- 2 tbs. butter
- 1/2 cup onion, diced
- 1 cup button mushrooms, finely diced
- 1/2 cup of whiskey
- 1/2 cup of beef broth
- dash of salt
- 1/4-1/2 cup of sour cream, or to taste
- 1/2 tsp. of prepared horseradish, or to taste
- 1 tbs. of chives, chopped
- milk, a few tablespoons

Les ingrédients. Le whisky est particulièrement important. :-)
1. Clean venison tenderloin of all fat and silver skin. Then season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste. Set aside to allow meat to come to room temperature.

At this point, you may want to start getting your grill ready. 
Chop mushrooms to get one cup. You want the mushroom pieces to be fairly small since it will be part of the sauce. 

Do the same with 1/2 cup of onion.
2. In a medium sauce pan or skillet, melt 2 tbs. of butter over medium heat.
Saute onion until it's just about to brown. Stir frequently.
Then add mushrooms and continue to saute for another 5 minutes, or until mushrooms are cooked and liquids are evaporated. Stir in a pinch of salt. Stir frequently. 
Here comes the fun part!

3. So you don't burn your house down, turn off the burner for a moment. 
Carefully pour 1/2 cup of whiskey into the pan. Then turn burner back on to medium heat and simmer until alcohol evaporates, like in the photo. This should only take about a minute.
Once whiskey evaporates, turn the burner up to medium-high heat and pour in 1/2 cup of beef stock. Allow mixture to reduce by half. 

At this point, you can choose to scoop out half of the mushroom pieces. We did that for aesthetic purposes. Then we sprinkled those scooped out pieces over the finished dish to make it pretty. 

4. Then reduce heat to low. Whisk in 1/4 to 1/2 cup of sour cream and 1/2 tsp. of prepared horseradish, or to taste.

You may want to go stronger on the horseradish. Rick loves it, but I'm not too fond of it so I only added 1/2 tsp. 
Whisk in a few tablespoons of milk to loosen up the sauce. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in chopped chives. 
Remember to check on your meat on the grill. Ideally, you want the sauce and the tenderloin to come out at the same time. DO NOT OVERCOOK venison. Medium to medium-rare is bueno

Allow tenderloin to rest 5 minutes after taking off the grill. Then slice tenderloin into medallions.
Serve Whiskey, Mushroom and Horseradish Cream Sauce over medallions. We also served with grilled asparagus and mashed potatoes. 

It was delicious! Thanks for reading. :-)

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Cat as a Hat

We posted this on Facebook a few days ago, but had to share it here. We're in love with this photo... well, at least I am (Jenny). I'm sure it's Photoshopped, but I don't care! I'm going to pretend it's real because it's so weird and awesome at the same time.  

"Can you skin this for me?"

Sunday, July 22, 2012

SCI's Youth Safari Day

Benelli rep. Tom Bradley
The 14th annual Youth Safari Day started with a big bang-- literally. Kids gaped and awed at Benelli's shotgun rep. Tom Bradley, who wowed young spectators with his shotgun trick shooting. For a finale, Bradley shot at the ground, which exploded into flames and rising smoke. Parents and children cheered. 

Youth Safari Day is put on by the Orange County Chapter of Safari Club International (SCI). It is held every third Saturday of July at Mike Raahauge's Shooting Enterprises in Corona, Calif. and is "a day to offer kids events that they don't get to do in school," said committee member Sam Mills. 

Tom Bradley signing autographs for his young fans.
Mills has been on SCI's planning committee since the beginning. "It's a group effort," said Mills. Countless of volunteers, sponsors and donors from organizations like the NRA, Turner's Outdoorsman, Quail Unlimited, the Mule Deer Foundation, the Conklin Foundation, assorted SCI chapters, Wild Game Feed and Weatherby make this youth outreach program possible, which served 3,000 - 4,000 parents and children this year. 

Marcus Halderman with signed clay target

Youth Safari Day highlighted outdoor activities and seminars such as firearm safety, kayaking, falconry, rifle, pistol, black powder, shotgun shooting, BB guns, archery, fishing, retrieving dog shows, rock climbing, cowboy action shooting, shotgun trick shooting, duck/quail/turkey calling, paint ball games, and many more.

Sam Mills, who was the past president of the OC Chapter of SCI, told me that the numbers of spectators have risen over the last few years. "There are a lot of repeat visitors, but as kids get older, people recycle through." Mills proudly revealed that all workers at Youth Safari Day were volunteers. 

SCI-OC's Matt McCroskey manned his chapter's Mobile Sensory Safari van. The van was built 10 years ago. It was intended to allow the visually impaired to walk through and feel what a lion or a bear looks like. Since then, many animals have been added to the van. The van is so popular that it also makes appearances at schools and local Boy Scout events. 

The Mobile Sensory Safari is always a big hit at Youth Safari Day. Kids couldn't help but pet and hug the animals. 


A lady in the booth emphatically told the children that none of these animals are endangered, no matter what the media says. Youth Safari Day was a great event to educate young people about wildlife. 

Josh with "Hunter"

Walking to the other end of the fair, Starlight Kennels had their crowd pumping. I met Josh Cacciatori, who runs Starlight Kennel with his father Paul. This family business has been around for at least 35 years. They train mostly hunting dogs, but they also serve clients who simply want obedience training. Josh explained that when he and his trainers first "interview" a hunting dog, they look for the dog's "will to chase." After observation, the dogs move on to learning how to grab objects on command.

Yesterday, Starlight Kennels brought plenty of dogs who were willing. It's always a pleasure to watch these dogs at work. They just love what they do and aren't afraid to show it. 

Excited kids lined up to throw toys into the pound. The dogs were commanded to hold still until their young masters gave the "go!"

"Get it, girl! Get it!"

Happy dog! "Daisy" jumped into the water at least 10 times, and she couldn't get enough!

At the fishing pond, I ran into Darlene Garcia and her daughter Jessica Molano from San Bernardino. This was their second time at Youth Safari Day. Darlene first heard about the event from her boss at work and she now comes out with her daughter, mother and brothers. Darlene looked at her daughter Jessica and said with a smile, "She likes to fish."

The pond was stocked with many fish for the event, including catfish and talapia.

Another event, which excited even me, was the Cowboy Mounted Shooting event.
Laurel and Nicholas

While waiting for the show to start, many got to greet and pet the horses. 


Some were brave enough to ride.

Then it was time. The riders jogged up to the starting line. They let their horses rip, flying through patterns with a special pistol in hand. The object was to stay in pattern while shooting all the balloons.

Horses and riders are two of my favorite things photograph.

Most did phenomenally well, shooting all the balloons.
The Big Horn Mountain Men were also at Youth Safari Day, for the 7th year in a row. I met Marie Burns, who explained to me that her organization's mission is to "keep people interested in black powder shooting."

To the right is volunteer Barry Howell in period clothing, helping a young lady to shoot.
Vince greeting a young shooter

Next, I had the pleasure of meeting Vince Moreno, who was described by other volunteers as the "Yoda" of the NRA Members' Council of Riverside. He is the council's president, and has been volunteering at Youth Safari Day since the event's beginnings. Vince is a "fervent" political supporter of gun rights and has worked with many notable pro-gun government officials to help secure our 2nd Amendment freedoms.
Vince explained to me that his booth was divided into three categories. 5-7 year olds shot at the first table, the second was reserved for 7-12 and the third was for 12-17 and mothers. "Kids can shoot as many time as they want, so can ladies. Fathers are not allowed because we have to buy the ammo ourselves and we assume that the dads can go out and do this on their own. There's something for everyone. We're all volunteers here."

When the NRA of Riverside started volunteering at Youth Safari Day years ago, they started with few guns. Now, thanks to donations from manufacturers like Marlin Firearms, their booth now offers kids 30 firearms to shoot. 

Of course, every outdoor day has to have a rock climbing wall.
Mr. Pony approves. If you live in California, make sure you take your kids to Youth Safari Day next year. It's our strong belief that kids should have some element of the outdoors in their life. And it's best to start them young, before they get too into all the video games and TV. The outdoors teaches kids good character, discipline and respect for their own existence and others.
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