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Category Archives: Why I love Trader Joes

Ice Cream Sunday: Salted Caramel & Pistachio

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The pistachio is by far my favorite nut, but I feel it is often unappreciated, especially as an ice cream flavor. Perhaps it’s that unnatural green color they always seem to make it. Caramel is by far my favorite thing, overall. So combining the two seems perfect. I ran into this fleur de sel caramel sauce at TJ’s and knew what needed to be done. So I did it. Now here’s some instructions so you can do it.

Your needs:

*1 cup whole milk

*2 cups heavy cream

*3 egg yolks

*1 vanilla bean

*3/4 cup sugar

*2 cups shelled pistachios

*1 jar caramel sauce

Do it:

Shell and peel the skin off 2 cups of pistachios, or have your spouse do it with threats of withholding delicious ice cream if they do not comply.

Split vanilla bean, scrape out innards.

Warm milk, sugar and vanilla bean, then stir in 3 tablespoons of the caramel sauce. Take off heat and cover for one hour.

Add egg yolks to milk mixture and heat on medium, stirring constantly until it thickens slightly.

Add milk mixture to cream, in a bowl over an ice bath and mix well.

Cover and refrigerate until well chilled.

Follow instructions of your ice cream maker, and when nearly done, mix in pistachios and some more caramel sauce.

For extra awesomeness, heat any remaining caramel sauce and drizzle over ice cream when served.

Bacon Burger That Will Blow Your Mind.

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Any schmuck can make a hamburger and slap some bacon on top. We are putting a twist ending on this bad boy. I consider this the Inception of burgers. The bacon, you see, is inside the burger. I know, I know, you are confused and overly excited at the same time. Sit back, relax and let me show you the way. Here we have the bacon-infused, caramelized vidalia onion, roasted red pepper, smoked blue cheese burger. On a pretzel roll.

Supplies (all Trader Joes):

*1 pound quality ground sirloin

*4 strips awesome bacon

*1 tomato

*2 pretzel rolls

*1 red pepper

*1 Vidalia onion

*2 shallots

*1/3 poundish blue cheese (moody bleu smoked blue cheese used here)

*Mustard

*Salt ‘n Peppa

*NO KETCHUP ALLOWED!

Shall We?

Start by roasting your red pepper. If you have never done this, it is not difficult. Put it in a heavy baking pan and put on highest rack in oven, under broiler. when one side is charred, rotate. Once done, take out and cover with a towel while it cools. The skin will come off super easy.

Fry your bacon, not crispy. You want it cooked maybe 2/3 of the way, as it will cook more why you cook your burger.

Thinly slice the onion and toss in a pan with a tablespoon of butter and sautee on medium until they are good and caramelized

Mince the shallots and chop the bacon, then mix in with your meat. Form into two patties.  (Yeah this recipe is just for two burgers, you have a problem with that?)

Grill up your burgers. This is the point where I wish we had a grill and patio at our current domicile, but alas we do not, so I am confined to the griddle. If you do have a grill, grill on.

Thinly slice your tomaters.

Cut the cheese.

Slice and lightly toast your pretzel rolls, then compile and cross your fingers that you don’t die just from the beauty of it.

Egg McMuffin, You Got Nothin’!

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I know.

I ate a McDonald’s Mcgriddle one morning at 4:45 after staying up all night. It was literally one of the worst decisions of my life.  Oh, I finished it, but only with the assistance of two hash brown planks. I then had ten hours of fitful, stomach achy sleep. It’s time to class up the breakfast sandwich, folks.  10 minutes of your time is all this is going to take for absolute breakfast deliciousness. All ingredients here were procured from Trader Joes. If you don’t have a TJ’s near you, I pity you, but I am sure you can find substitutes.

You got what it takes?

*2 slices peppercorn asiago sourdough

*2 large eggs

*2 awesome slices of bacon

*1 handful grated peppercorn toscano cheese

*some fresh thyme, for good measure

*salt n’ peppa

What you do:

Fry up that bacon

Fry up those eggs, sunny side up, in the bacon grease, obviously.

Lightly toast your bread

Place eggs on one piece of bread, put cheese on top and put under the broiler until cheese is bubbly to your satisfaction, or until you cannot contain yourself.

Sprinkle that thyme

Compile, and enjoy. You will not regret it.

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