Antebellum Kitchen: Coffeehouse Grub

As a struggling college student and songwriter making the rounds in Nashville I lived for the days when I could enjoy a hearty meal of what I term ‘coffeehouse grub’ at Bongo Java, Frothy Monkey and other YUM eateries.  I have since found my own voice in the kitchen – the best food is often simple, natural and speaks from the soul.  I love breakfast, but with Celiac Disease I have been able to indulge in some of my old breakfast comforts – pancakes and french toast.  It took playing around with Gluten Free recipes in the kitchen and working with ingredients to find a niche to complement the breakfast comforts I craved. This week my Antebellum Kitchen theme will focus on Coffeehouse Grub and Tea Time Delights.

Humbug Ranch Steak with Nash Browns

This is a western-southern fusion dish inspired by favorite Nashville eateries and my Montana cattle call recipes.

When I am on the road or gearing up for a busy day (a hike or long day of driving, touring a town on foot) I want breakfast to be my primary meal.

The Humbug Ranch Steak is a grass fed (preferably) sirloin steak marinated in a sweet tea marinade (just keep in sweet tea for six hours for full effect – I am lazy I do a ten minute marinade, then add the rub – my mom will add the rub to the marinade and marinate for three hours) and seasoned in Bone Suckin Steak Rub.  I use a Lodge Cast Iron Skillet and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Depending on how you want to cook your steak you can alter this a bit, but I’m a no fuss sear it gal –

“Place the steak in the skillet and cook, turning once, until well-browned, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer the steak in the skillet to the oven and cook for 5 minutes more for medium-rare.”  I’m a medium well girl – I know a cardinal sin – light pink in the middle is my choice.  You can get a great how to from Food Network – I just use intuition and tongs to kind of guide my direction..

You can also use a grill or George Foreman – I just like the rich flavor from the cast iron.
I drizzle barbeque sauce (Knot a Yankee or Jack Daniels – I’m allergic to Jack, but it is Tennessee’s best), spicy sauce is another choice for cowboy’s who like a hot breakfast…my taste buds cannot handle it.
I do a stir fry of grilled onions, green peppers and cilantro and mangoes (you can do canned or I just buy them pre-sliced) I drizzle olive oil for heat and allow the medley to simmer – I then drizzle the medley over the steak with grated Colby jack cheese.
I crack a hard boiled egg and crumble the egg into bits over the steak for added protein and flavor.
This steak dish is complemented by Nash Browns – a hearty helping of Tennessee West hash browns.  Nash Browns are crispy hash browns with gooey cheese, pico de gallo, chopped onion and brown sugar (just a pinch)
Hash browns made simple – you can purchase hash browns from the frozen foods section or do it the old fashioned Hickory way –
My Grandmother Ruby used to use a potato ricer to get all of the juice out of the potato, she then peeled the potato and used a basic cheese grater to create lace thin, pulpy delicious pieces of Russet or Yukon Gold potato.  She would then mix the shredded potato with thin cheddar hoop cheese – any type will do – and add a pinch of brown sugar.
I like to ‘fry’ saute my hash browns in a mix of olive oil and a tinge of maple syrup (Maple Grove Farms – Vermont).  adding in the pico and onion with the shreds…
I usually just purchase pico pre-made at Whole Foods, but you can make your own.  I’ll post a recipe for pico soon 🙂 I am a PICO LOVER
For a great how to on crispy hash browns I recommend this link.
20140623-shredded-hash-browns-nick-kindelsperger-8-rinse-cook.jpg
You can dress up the plate with a sliced orange and rose petal – pair with a rich deep roast coffee – Bongo Java’s blends are available for order online – Whole Foods Night Owl is my go too for early rising or late night breakfast.

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