Grilled Bison Steaks w/ Cabernet Sauce

If you’ve spent any time at all around this little blog, you probably know that Dan is a die-hard, life-long fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers.  Football season is his favorite time of year, and after growing up in Central Pennsylvania and graduating from the University of Pittsburgh Law School, he bleeds black and yellow.  Sadly, he married an apathetic-at-best football “fan” who has been known to refer to football season as “shopping season.”  In my defense, I do wear Steeler garb on Game Days (as long as it’s cute) and I “watch” the games (while multi-tasking with magazines and/or blogging and/or online shopping and/or doing my nails) to support the Team.  In an effort to get me at all more interested in football, we decided to try something new this year:  The Steeler Opponent-City Challenge.  For as many weeks as we can manage, we’re going to cook something from the city or region playing against the Steelers that week.  To begin the season, the Steelers played the Denver Broncos.  The first Denver-indigenous food that came to mind (after granola) was bison.  We decided to try bison steaks, fancied up with a red wine sauce, just in case we didn’t like the bison as much as we like beef steaks.  Turns out that the grilled bison was really good on its own, but the sauce was also decadently delicious and would taste great with beef steaks or other proteins as well.  Win-win.  (Unlike the outcome of the Steeler game against the Broncos, unfortunately.)

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Weekly Menu (Sept. 8)



  • Manhattan Clam Chowder


  • Grilled Shrimp, Orzo Salad w/ Heirloom Tomatoes & Herbs


  • Pork Roast w/ Vegetables & Pan Gravy, Smashed Potatoes


  • Take-Out


  • Chicken Pot Pie, Salad


  • Pork Fried Rice (w/ leftover pork), Egg Rolls


  • Dinner Out

Friday Favorites

Some food-related (mostly) (and baseball!) things we enjoyed this past week:

We had a wonderful trip to Houston last weekend, for our annual baseball “extravaganza” with my parents (we call it that because the weekend involves a lot of baseball — as does this post — attending 2 games, staying at a baseball-themed hotel, etc.)  The Astros even won a game, amidst one of their worst seasons ever.  The weekend was a tad bittersweet, however, since the hotel, the Inn at the Ballpark, is going to be rebranded as a Westin.  So next year’s extravaganza will be a bit different, with changes occurring at the hotel throughout the off-season.  My people dislike change, but we love that hotel and the people who work there who treat us so well every time we visit (and who we hear will be staying — thank goodness!), so we look forward to checking out the new digs next year.  But the big clock in the lobby will be sorely missed.

No baseball game is complete without a hot dog.  Or three.  Ketchup, onion, tomato and cucumber on mine, and a duo of chili-cheese and mustard-sauerkraut dogs for Dan.

There is an amazing chef at the Inn at the Ballpark who often treats my parents and their friends to special creations when they’re in town for games.  We’re not sure if he created the “Coach’s Favorite” breakfast or which coach loves it, but it’s one of our all-time favorite breakfasts as well.  Toasted English muffin with cream cheese, topped with tomato slices and crispy bacon.  The breakfast version of a BLT — without the L.  We make it at home all the time.

Can you spot the baseball element in the above photo?  It was a gift from our friend Chris, Food and Beverage Director extraordinaire at the Inn, and is one of the coolest foodie novelty items ever.  We are now the proud owners of a pepper grinder shaped like a baseball bat, prominently displayed (and used!) next to our stove.  Thanks again, Chris!

Finally, on a non-baseball related note, we have a baby eggplant growing in our garden!  This is the first time we’ve ever tried to grow eggplant and weren’t sure what to expect.  It’s very little right now (about the size of a thumb) but hopefully it will continue to grow and we’ll be able to use it in a batch of Pasta alla Norma.  Cooking with home-grown veggies is the best.

Crispy Beef Tacos

Living in Texas, we appreciate a really good beef taco.  Until recently, however, we didn’t bother trying to make them at home, believing that the home-cooked version couldn’t possibly be as good as the tacos we get at our favorite Tex-Mex joints.  Turns out we were quite mistaken.  We found a recipe from Cook’s Illustrated that is even better than what we had previously considered the best tacos around.  Although these tacos require more ingredients and steps than the home version made with the store-bought flavor packet, the beefy end result is well worth the (minimal) extra effort.

Update:  We’ve made these tacos with ground turkey (93% lean) instead of beef, and honestly cannot tell the difference.  So if you’re craving beef tacos, but trying to eat less red meat, this is the recipe for you.

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