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Stumbling Toward Dinner

Winner-winner, onion dinner! Recently, The Rogue Estate gang entered a contest offered by search aggregate website StumbleUpon, seeking dinner party concepts built upon themes and recipes found using only their web service. The result? WE WON! My love of onions in all their forms is no secret around the Rogue Estate Kitchens and often the platform for good sarcastic laughs. "One of these days, we should do a dinner of nothing but onions, ha ha ha." And so it was meant to be, another snotty comment turned hair-brained scheme. The challenge - using StumbleUpon's keyword based stumble tool, find recipes to build a menu for a dinner party. The subject - no kidding - Onions. Not merely recipes that just happen to have onions as supporting players, but recipes of which the onions are the stars, supported by the other ingredients. Additionally, I wanted a full cohesive menu instead of a collection of random dishes or appetizers. Lastly - some variety. Rogue Estate is about culinary exploration, not "same old same old". After a few evenings of stumbling and researching recipes, the menu was set. I wrote up our contest entry and submitted it to StumbleUpon. A couple weeks later after the contest had been forgotten, this email arrived: "Thanks so much for applying to the StumbleUpon Dinner Party promotion. We'd love for you to host this awesome "Onion Themed" potluck! We thought that was a funny concept." Onion Chef's Night was a GO! This is the full menu we prepared, with StumbleUpon links to the source recipes: App / Snack Caramelized Onion & Bacon dip with chips http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1eSySl/networkedblogs.com/nrwkY Salad Shaved brussels sprouts and onion salad - we added more onion varieties to this, including a fried red onion garnish. http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/296bw6/www.food52.com/recipes/7650_shaved_brussels_sprout_salad_with_red_onion_lemon_and_pecorino Main Red Onions stuffed with pork sausage - fuck martha stewart, but this is a good reference and we used Corridor Sausage to hit this one out of the park. http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/172RhB/www.marthastewart.com/857640/sausage-stuffed-red-onions Grilled Onion "Steaks" with honey dijon glaze. Ridiculously simple, and quite satisfying. http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/3rrcZj/www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/BBQ-ONION-STEAKS-WITH-HONEY-MUSTARD-SAUCE-235354 Sides French onion soup stuffed mushroom caps - fuck yeah. these things were killer. An awesome alternative to the bowl of soup. Will definitely use this concept again somewhere. http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/32lhDQ/thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2010/11/french-onion-soup-stuffed-mushrooms/ Sweet & Savory Dessert Cauliflower & Onion Tart - this was a monster, or maybe we were burned out on onions by dessert. Either way we took it over the edge by serving with a dollop of Slow Jams Cranberry & Red Onion Jam. http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/7qRubQ/smittenkitchen.com/2010/02/cauliflower-and-caramelized-onion-tart/ We took a bunch of photos, of course... for the sake of laziness, they're posted to our Facebook Page, of which you are hopefully a fan and if not, show us some thumbs-up love! -///  
A consummate nerd, yet still plays well with others.

BaconFest Michigan Recipe: Pancetta Pasta Fritatta

The Rogue Estate's BBQ Bob and Street Eatzz's Chef Tom presented a cooking demo at the first Baconfest Michigan in the Royal Oak Farmer's Market on June 2, 2012. This is one of the dishes they prepared for the crowd. Chef Tom’s Pancetta Pasta Frittata begins with a pile of pancetta in a sauté pan, to which capers, sun-dried tomatoes, wild mushrooms and pre-cooked linguine are combined. Chef Tom’s 313 hot sauce (available in a market or restaurant near you soon) is added to the mix and the ingredients are tossed, then the whole thing is deglazed with (go figure) Bakon Vodka. Well-beaten eggs are added to cement it all together. The frittata is browned on both sides similar to an American omelet and finished with Gorgonzola cheese. Let it set up for a few to cool then cut into wedges and enjoy with a glass or two of your favorite nightcap. Software: 5 slices of pancetta, cut into julienne strips 2 Tbsp of capers 2 Tbsp of sun dried tomatoes, cut into julienne strips 1 cup of morels or wild mushroom blend, roughly chopped 4 large eggs, beaten and a little cream or milk added 1 cup of cooked linguine 1 Tbsp of Street Eatzz 313 Sauce 1 shot of Bakon Vodka A few twists of cracked black pepper Pinch of kosher salt Method:
  1.     In a bowl, crack the eggs and add one half egg shell of cream. Whip the eggs until frothy. Hold off to the side.
  2.     In a non-stick omelet pan, sauté the pancetta, do not drain off the fat.
  3.     Add the mushrooms to the pancetta and lightly sauté.
  4.     Add the sun-dried tomatoes and capers to the mix and bring up to heat.
  5.     Add the 313 sauce, remembering not to breathe in the fumes from the hot sauce! (As it heats up the capsicum is released into the air for a few seconds.)
  6.     Add the linguine and toss to coat well with all of the above.
  7.     Take that shot of Bakon Vodka and deglaze the pan, remember to stand back and watch out for the flame.
  8.     Pour in the egg mixture and season with salt and pepper, using a rubber spatula mix all the ingredients well and spread out evenly.
  9.     Turn the heat down to medium and cook as you would a regular omelet.
  10.     When the frittata is browned on one side flip it over or for those less daring, slide onto a plate the turn it over into the pan.
  11.     Add crumbled Gorgonzola to the browned top and let it finish off cooking.
  12.     When fully cooked place the frittata on a cutting board let it set up and cool down a bit.
  13.     Cut into wedges and enjoy with some crusty ciabatta bread and fruit garnish.
Did you get to see our cooking demo and try this awesome dish at Baconfest Michigan? How'd you like it? Let us know in the comments. -Chef Tom
A consummate nerd, yet still plays well with others.

Dino’s Lounge 5th Annual Rib Burn Out Results!

1,200 pounds of pork spare ribs later and the results are in: The BBQ team "The Pork Kings" comprised of Rogue Estate and Hungry Dudes crews pulled in the "Rookie Team of the Year" trophy from a field of five first year teams and came in a close second to Grand Champions. (The major upset we were smoking for.) Six hours of cherry smoke, slow and low in the maw of R.E.'s BEAST mobile smoker and R.E.'s "Smolder Sauce" made for some amazing ribs and all eight teams served a crowd of over 800 people and raised lots of money for charity behind Dino's Lounge in Ferndale.

Hubert, Joe, Dave, BBQ Bob & Ian - The Pork Kings!

A consummate nerd, yet still plays well with others.

Rogue Estate BBQ Event! Saturday 02/04/12

If you're in the Detroit area, Join us for the 5th annual BBQ Rib Burn Out behind Dino's Lounge in Ferndale! Rogue Estate and The Hungry Dudes have teamed up to put the delicious smack down on the competition for this charity event. This year's charities are: The Ferndale Youth Assistance & Michigan Aids Coalition Full details can be found on Dino's site  here and Facebook, here. Rockin' Blues BBQ Rib Burn Out! HEATED PARTY TENT in the parking lot behind Dino's Lounge! WRIF will be there with "Rock Girl" Sarah! Ferndale Eduation Foundation will be raffling of a new Ford Focus! Tickets $10. Noon - 7pm, then move the party inside Dino's! Tickets go on sale next week! Get yours before the party to be sure you get in! 4,000 heated sf with tables & chairs & lots of Bud & Bud Light (16oz $4), Buffalo Trace Bourbon & Cokes ($4) and RIBS! You get to sample ribs from each team & cast your vote for The People's Choice Awards - 8 teams competing* (that's 16 ribs!) 5th Annual BBQ Rib Burn Out - Noon-4pm Celebrity Judges & People's Choice voting until 5! Winners announced at 5pm Entertainment: Tent Noon-3pm - The Chris Brantley Band (Mitch Ryder's guitarist) 3:30-7pm ADJ (acoustic covers from Johnny Cash and Cee Lo Green) Dino's - The Reefermen with James Whalin takes the Dino's stage @ 9pm
A consummate nerd, yet still plays well with others.

Chef’s Night Recipe: Beef Burgundy

[When Bob isn't wandering the markets in search of new products and exotic produce, he's back in the kitchen cooking.] It's winter and that means it's time for braising and pot roasting. This recipe works fine by either method, or a combination of the two. The most important thing this dish needs is time - so plan ahead to give it plenty. It only gets better the longer it cooks. We prepared this as one of the Winter Comfort Foods for a recent Chef's Night menu and it's been featured in a photo gallery by The Hungry Dude's Joe Hakim, a Photo Gallery on the Rogue Estate Facebook and an article in Real Detroit Weekly. Enjoy! Beef Burgundy to serve a table of 4 This is a very flexible and forgiving dish that is perfect for the beginner. Ingredients are inexpensive and short of full out neglect,  it's tough to actually mess up. Like most soups; leftovers taste even better the following day. The software: 3lbs Beef Short Ribs or Flatiron Steaks, roughly chopped 2 Tablespoons peanut oil, vegetable shortening or bacon fat 2 cups diced yellow onion 2 tablespoons crushed garlic (more if desired) 3 cups diced carrot 1 cup finely diced celery 2 cups full bodied red wine - I used Chateau de la Taille Bordeaux 2 cups beef stock 2 tablespoons butter juice of 1/2 lemon 1 star anise Salt Black Pepper 3 hours of time from prep to serve The hardware: A Large (12"+) pan or dutch oven, preferably cast iron. Large (2+ Qt) saucepan optional. The Method: Prep all ingredients before starting - this will make things go much smoother during assembly and cooking. For the wine - use something you'll enjoy drinking, since there will likely be some leftover. If it tastes good in a glass, it'll taste good in a recipe. When chopping beef & veg, smaller pieces mean less cook time. This recipe was timed with beef cut to roughly 1 1/2" cubes. 1/4" dice on the onions and 1/4" slice on the carrots & celery. With everything cleaned, sliced, diced and ready, add the oil or fat to the pan and heat it on med-hi until nearly wisps of smoke appear. Salt the beef and add to the pan carefully (It will spit a little). Don't over crowd the pan - brown in batches. Brown on all sides. When a good color & crust is on the beef, remove to a bowl. A good set of tongs is the best tool for this job. Reduce the heat to medium and add the onions and garlic. Cook the onions and garlic down until they're translucent. Crank the heat up to high and add the wine to the pan to deglaze. Use the tongs or a spatula to scrape all the stuff off the bottom of the pan and mix it around with the onions and wine. As the Wine begins to bubble, reduce the heat to medium-low. (If using a sauce pan, transfer everything over to it at this time.) Return the beef to the pan, add the carrots, celery, beef stock and star anise. Give everything a stir and let it simmer for at least 2 hours. Reduce the heat as needed. Things should be bubbly but NOT boiling. Time is your most important ingredient here. Don't fuss over the pan. Check every 30 minutes, give it a stir, add beef stock and/or wine as needed to keep everything 1/2 submerged. As the beef and carrots become tender enough to mash with a fork around the 90 minute mark, allow liquid to reduce and thicken. After 2 hours, everything should be tender and the liquid should be thick, similar to gravy. If not, cook a little longer. Fish out the star anise, add the butter and lemon juice, stirring everything to combine. Taste the liquid and add salt & pepper as desired, serve immediately. Not surprisingly, this dish will pair perfectly with the wine you used to cook with. Goes great with some fresh, hot bread of any type on the side for scooping, or even just as a carrier for butter. ;) We look forward to your questions and success stories in the comments below or on our Facebook! -///    
A consummate nerd, yet still plays well with others.