Summer STEAK- How to?

The only time to eat diet food is while you’re waiting for the steak to cook.
— Julia Child

How to cook a Juicy Tri-tip Steak

Driving home in the snow in a beat up old car that you bought for $600 wasn't a good idea at sixteen but you make your way to the mountains no matter the consequences of the weather. I would leave at the end of the day and know I had to go slow.    I loved the wetness of the big flakes falling.  My windshield wipers were strong but sometimes the snow collected on them so thick I thought I wouldn't make it home.  And yet I still went because it was the best days ever when I was there.  I know this sounds like the song but it is true. I would come home tired, super hungry, and invigorated that I drove home alone in that weather.  I felt like a superwoman.  Proud of my abilities.

I had a ski trip this year for a first time in a long time.  My body was tired, I felt the ache in my legs that I didn't remember but the pain wasn't much because in my mind all I could go back to was those good memories. Those times when I skied for days at a time.  Where the snow was beautiful as I creeped on home.  Sometimes taking two maybe three hours but the next weekend I would be there again.  I was patient for my love of the white stuff.

 It's often the same story when you go to a restaurant and order a steak.  You wait for it.  Why do you go back?  Because it's good because it's memories  in your mind of that juicy, salty and flavorful chunk of meat.  In fact it's so good I wondered how do they do it?

 I want to do that at home.  I wanted that memory in my own kitchen.

Was it was possible?

I always figured I would have to have a special pan or grill or something to make a steak taste like a restaurant.  But, as it turns out that is not the case.  After much practice and youtubing I finally realized like anything steaks can be fantastic made at home but it is all about patience.

 Hmm that is not always the easiest quality for anyone and especially when you want to just have dinner quick on the table.

 It's funny though because part of why we go to a restaurant is to have that time to sit and wait for our meal. It is forced patience. My mind started whirring.  What if I applied this same idea to cooking steak?

 If I went to a restaurant I might start with a glass of wine to linger and maybe some nibbles...and I would wait.

 So here it is:

the secret to cooking a great steak😋:

Prep time and Rest.

 I know you are in shock. 😱

How to cook a Steak

But no worries it is simple.

The hard work includes: removing from the fridge give it a little TLC or in this case,

OSPOOlive oil, Salt and Pepper, and Open up your bottle of wine. 🍷

Now I got ya hooked, huh?!  

Oh and while you drink that wine let me know what were you nibbling on?

screenshots from food blogger pro


  • 1/2 pound boneless Tri-tip Steak

  • Kosher salt and Black Pepper

  • 1 Tbsp Olive oil


Step 1

Take steak out of refrigerator at least 30 minutes prior to cooking.  If no bone in steak and it is thick, pound out the steak between two pieces of parchment paper using a mallet.  

Step 2

Coat steak with Olive Oil on both sides and then Salt and Pepper steak on both sides as well.  Rest steak (NOT IN REFRIGERATOR) on a plate on the countertop.  

Step 3

Heat Grill to a very hot temperature. If cooking inside heat oven to 450 degrees.  

Step 4

Once your oven is hot heat pan that can go in the oven until almost smoking when a drop of oil is added.  Lay steak in pan ending with the steak away from you.  Do not move steak around in pan.  It is ready to flip when it moves away from pan easily.  Flip and take off stove top and finish in oven. Cook 4-5 minutes or less. You want the steak just underdone as it will continue cooking on the counter.  You can check it with a thermometer and if you like it medium remove it at 155 degrees F internal temperature.  Remove steak from pan and allow to rest 5-10 minutes until reaches a temp of 160 degrees.  If you like your steak medium rare remove it at 140 degrees F and allow to rest same amount of time to reach 145 degrees F.  Using a thermometer is a good indicator when new at cooking steak to tell it's doneness.  As you cook more you will be able to tell by the touch.  So when it comes out touch the steak and then touch again when it is done resting to see what "done" feels like.  Do this each time you make steak until you can tell without the thermometer.

Step 5

If cooking on the grill it is the same technique except you do not need to place it in a pan.  You still need to remove it and let it rest.  The resting is IMPORTANT!

Step 6

Slice steak across the grain if slicing for the plate or for saving for another meal. You can finish with some finishing salt such as Smoked Paprika Salt or Spicy Salt if you want to kick it up a notch.


  • REST, REST, REST😴😴😴 the STEAK -this allows the cooking to be completed and assures that the steak comes to the perfect temperature. If you have hungry folks slowly plate any other food or ask them to pour the wine etc until time to plate the steak

  • If you buy meat that is meant to be cooked for a long time such as rump or shoulder it will not taste good cooked fast. A good way to remember is if it is a muscle in YOUR BODY that works hard or is big, it is a muscle IN THE ANIMAL that wants to be cooked long. Such as- shoulders, rumps, or shanks. Easy muscles include tri-tips and sirloins are not working too hard and are kind of the lazy muscles just chillin' 😎

  • Purchase extra steak and have leftover steak salads, steak tacos, quesadillas, or steak sandwiches

  • Serve with spinach or other leafy greens for extra iron and plate the steak over them and let the juices run into the greens for extra saucy greens.

  • A good steak made well starts at home...Don't feel like you have to go to a fancy restaurant to have a great steak, the best ones start at home with quality meat.


Buckwheat Blueberry Waffles

A waffle is like a pancake with a syrup trap.
— Mitch Hedberg

I stepped back in time this morning into my grandfather's 1970's  truck camper.  The malty sweet hue drifted into my nose and the crackle cooking swept into my ears.

 "Do you want a lead balloon?" he used to ask me as a child eagerly sitting in the canvas covered bench awaiting what were his buckwheat pancakes.

 "Yes, please. Grandpa." I would respond.

 He would heave one, and if I was lucky two, "lead balloons" onto my plate from the small electric griddle.

 I never knew how he could make them fit the size of the plate with such exactitude, but I loved that I could attempt to drown the pancakes in Knotts Berry farm syrup.  It was always blackberry. The purple hue contrasted well with the spotted cement colored pancakes.  

Our prayer, short and sweet, was still never short enough for the oodles of syrup to be sucked up by the lead balloons.

 I have moved on from lead balloon pancakes to light and yeasty buckwheat waffles, but I continue the tradition of serving them with Marionberry Syrup.  

Berry syrup fills the waffle caves and makes every bite taste just a little bit better. Or maybe it's the fact that I see myself sitting with my Grandpa sharing a hot lead balloon.

Hands up for the life experiences of our grandparents!

 What's your favorite grandparent story?

screenshots from food blogger pro

Recipe adapted from Epicurious


  • 2 1/4 teaspoons or 1 package active dry yeast

  • 1/4 cup warm water

  • 1 teaspoon sugar

  • 2 cups lukewarm milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 1/2 cups flour

  • 1 cup buckwheat flour

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • 5 tablespoons canola oil or butter, melted

  • 2 eggs, beaten

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 cup blueberries

Step 1

In a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast into 1/4 cup warm water and stir in the one teaspoon of sugar. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes.

Step 2

Put the warm milk and salt in a large bowl, then add the yeast mixture and whisk in the flours. Cover and refrigerate overnight if the weather is warm or leave out on the counter if it's cool.

Step 3

Next morning, add the sugar, oil, eggs, and soda. Cook according to your waffle iron's instructions. The batter will be thin but a Belgian style waffle maker can be used.

Step 4

Enjoy with Marionberry or Blackberry syrup!


Curry Chicken Salad

Boys, I may not know much, but I know chicken poop from chicken salad.
— Lyndon B. Johnson

The first time I did a back dive off the diving board I was scared.😨

  No, more like terrified. 😱

The diving class seemed like a good idea.

  I enjoy swimming. 🏊

It seemed like an easy “A” for a college class.  And I have dove off diving boards since I was a kid in swimming classes. 

It couldn’t be that hard, right?

 It wasn’t a bucket list kind of thing, more like something you do in college when you need physical education points and other options such as team sports or bowling well... they shouldn't be on your list.

That terrifying dive however didn’t last too long. 

I took the plunge!

I did it. 

I followed the basic instructions from the professor and stood tall. Toes on the edge. Arms high above my head. Face looking at the diving board in front of me. 

You don’t jump when you first learn to back dive you sort of glide into the water.  You lean and lean backwards until you see the water coming at you. 

It’s an unusual feeling to have the water come up towards you in reverse, but it is also a slipping into time kind of feeling because it doesn’t seem real. 

If you do it right, you hear the professor’s words in your ears

“ don’t look back, don’t turn around, stand straight. arms back, farther, farther. Reach. Reach.”

...and then the words stop because you are in the water going down. 

It is after that terrifying first moment, it becomes a thrill. 

You get out and want to try again. 

You are proud of yourself! 

You can’t believe you didn’t “bellyflop” “backflop” not sure what the word would be going backwards, but it is a distinguishing moment in a swimmer’s life if they learn to do a backwards dive. 

I’m not saying making a curry chicken salad is the same as taking a back dive, but maybe for you it will take a little strength and courage to do things differently. 

Maybe you always purchase a roast chicken and you decide to roast chicken in you oven yourself using this simple method.

Maybe you have never been much into Indian cuisine and you think you probably won’t like it, but you want to try something new and different. Oh and you heard Turmeric is the new Health Thing! It's True!

  Maybe cooking in general is something you don’t have time for, or have never found much interest in since after all that means you have to wash the dishes afterwards.

Does this sounds like your excuses ?

The reasonings in your head?

Perhaps you might just have that scary diving board lingering in front of you, like I did?

  Is it it time to take the plunge? 

See what this cooking hype is all about? It’s just a Sandwich after all, right? 

I promise it is the little things that make you happy.

Enjoy scooping up the spices. Blending the flavors.

Spices for Curry Chicken Salad

 If it’s your first dive into cooking or your umpteenth one this, curry chicken salad sandwich is going to become one you do over and over again because after all you took the PLUNGE! 

Kudos to you and Happy Diving, I mean Cooking! 


  • Roast chicken pieces make up 1 1/2 cup of chicken chopped

  • 1/4 cup chopped cashews (toasted is optional)

  • 1/4 cup blanched green peas (How to blanch vegetables...go here.)

  • 2 whites and part of greens finely chopped scallions (green onions)

  • 4 teaspoons Indian curry spice (I like Madras unless you have your own blend

  • Sriracha Saffron Mayonnaise (See below) 1/4 cup or plain Mayonnaise with 1 tsp of Sriracha added

  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Step 1

Roast Chicken or if using Store Bought Roasted Chicken Remove chicken both white and brown meat from bones and chop up pieces to preferred size.  For this chicken salad I like my chicken finely chopped not shredded or in large chunks because of the peas and cashew sizes.

Step 2

 In a large bowl add toasted cashews, peas, and scallions to chicken.  Add Mayonnaise and then add curry spices. Using a spatula or wooden spoon mix all ingredients together.  Taste and if more curry flavor is needed add one teaspoon at a time.  Taste again and add kosher salt and ground black pepper.  Do not skimp on salt, make sure and add to taste.  

Step 3

Serve on Bread Rolls removing some of the inside of the  bread and scoop chicken salad placing into the center of the rolls.

Enjoy every Bite!



  • Use your chicken bones to make homemade chicken stock in a pressure cooker for fast cooking

  • Using brown meat in chicken salad adds more flavor than just using white meat

  • Read Recipe Instructions and ingredients before beginning, it will help you in the long run.

screenshots from food blogger pro

Sriracha Saffron Mayonnaise

  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise

  • 1/2 tsp grated lemon zest

  • 1/2 TBSP lemon juice

  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard

  • 1 tsp Sriracha

  • 1/4 tsp saffron threads (soaked in lemon juice)

Whisk all together.



Mandarin Juice

Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influence of the earth.
— Henry David Thoreau

Mandarin Orange Juice

Let's be healthy and Drink Juice.

 Let's be healthy and get up early.

 I have always wanted to be a morning person.  Thus far it hasn't happened.  I think my Grandpa who is 90 years old this month isn't even a morning person so I kind of wonder if there is hope.😉  

And just to clarify by morning person I am not referring to getting up at 7 am to an alarm clock and rolling out of bed because you have no choice, you have an appointment at 8 that you made because you thought you could force yourself into being a morning person.  

Rather I was making reference to those whom morning is a natural thing.  The alarm⏰ probably doesn't even need to go off they will wake up.

 I on the other hand would miss a flight, sleeping straight through until some sub conscious part of me dreamed of missing a flight.

I'm  talking about those who get up and head to the gym 🏃 for the 6 am class and arrive 15 minutes early.  My body barely moves at those moments.  I keep having dreams of swimming 🏊with the masters at 6 but alas it just doesn't happen....  

My go to however when people ask are you a morning or night person is to say: "neither. I'm 10-2. And you?" I usually get a chuckle taking the pressure off of being that early bird who catches the worm or the night owl who writes novels.

Magnuson Park Bird

Don't get me wrong, I do like it when I rise early.  The house is quiet, no one is stirring.  My cup of coffee calls and in the winter my fireplace🔥 is on (yeah it's electric).

But I also like to have that sweet taste of sunrise.🌄  I love to wake up with the birds outside and watch them rise in the air with me.

Magnuson Park Birds

 I love to go out and walk at the park when the sun is coming up and grab the first light for photos. 📷 These moments happen a little more in the PNW during the winter as the weather permits because the sun⛅️ takes a little longer to come up. I think it likes to sleep in as much as I do. 🌞  So if I wake up early by chance and have had my cup o' joe ☕️and went out on a jaunt I love coming back to some fresh squeezed juice. 🍊 Not just plain ol' orange juice although as a kid I lived on that before coffee (existed in my world).

 Something different, something with a little kick and that says:

"Good job. You are part of the morning crew. You made it."

That is what this juice is for.

 If it is already made upon your return home, even better.  If not it's quick and yummy straight out of the juicer.  No need to refrigerate it prior to drinking cause, after all, you just went out for a walk in the cold early in the morning, didn't you? 😉


  • 7-9 mandarins peeled

  • 1/4 inch peeled ginger

  • 1 lemon peeled


Step 1

Place mandarins then ginger then lemon into juicer.  

Drink up!


  • Satsuma mandarins make the best juice and they are in season from early winter to early spring depending upon where you live

  • Good news one mandarin gives you about half of your vitamin C for the day and 2 grams of fiber

  • Clementines aka "cuties" although good are not the same as satsuma mandarins and do not have the same juice ratio as mandarins are more similar to oranges in this regard.

  • Little known facts: Mandarins originated in China, Clementines are a grafted fruit from a guy in Algeria.

Grilled Peaches

You could be the tastiest, most juiciest, most delicious peach out there in the world; there’s still going to be people out there who don’t like peaches .
— Benson Henderson

Last Days of Summer with Grilled Peaches

So question for you my loyal reader were you more a cabbage patch kid or garbage pail card collector?  Tell the truth, be honest.  Or maybe you don’t even know what I am talking about because truth be told, you had to be a kid of the 80’s.

Kid trends are kind of like that, they come, they go, some come back, some don’t, but why is that? If you know could you tell me in the comments below?

 Me, I was a garbage pail card kind of kid. Why? I think because the idea of collecting things was always such a cool idea and also because they weren't actually dolls.

 I wasn't ever much of a doll kind of kid.  Stuffed animals, now that was a different thing.  I had the polar bear, the brown bear, the dog, the horse and on and on depending upon who gave me what animal or whom I could convince to buy me the next stuffed thing. But the idea of a doll with a round face that you put in a crib and took care of, changed it's diapers etc I just couldn't get into that. 

 I am talking about baby dolls with little blue or pink plastic bottles that sometimes were filled with fake milk and when you turned it upside down the milk disappeared.  I never did understand how that worked? Again does anyone? 

 Anyway, I just never got dolls. Was it some instinctual nurture to care  human beings?  Or was it because they didn't have a little brother or sister to care for already? Or maybe they wanted to imitate their mothers and what they did?  I don't know. I still don't know.  But the difference is that now we can "google" it and find out.  So I did.... Turns out there are hundreds of articles on the topic Here is one fascinating article I found. 

 Either way, whether you liked dolls, cars, trucks, stuffed animals,or collecting garbage pail kids the idea is these things take you back.

 You made memories. Some good,  

some maybe,

 not so good.

But, your brain wants to keep hanging onto them, not because you needed another doll or another stuffed animal but because each memory is a story. Your story. 

 So whether you collected garbage pail kids, cabbage patch dolls or just played and created your memories they are yours and yours alone.  

Foods can be memories too.

 Like when I made these grilled peaches this summer.  The juice oozed and the char marks blackened.  The peach flavor melted in my mouth and my summer was complete.  

Summer ends officially in just a few days.  So before you let summer go, grill up a few and make a memory.  

Goodbye Summer, I loved you everyday. Thanks for giving me great memories. 

Peaches before they go on the Grill


  • 3 Peaches Halved and Pits removed

  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil


Step 1

Heat Grill to about 400 degrees. Using a pastry brush, brush olive oil onto flesh side of peaches.

Step 2

Place Peaches flesh side down onto grill.  Cook a few minutes until peaches begin to get warm.  Remove from grill using a metal spatula and eat.


  • Grilled peaches make a great salad with tomatoes and herbs.

  • Serve grilled peaches over vanilla ice cream.  

  • No grill? Roast peaches in oven instead. You won't have the grill marks but they will still taste great

OXO Cook's Tools

Tomato Tart

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
— miles kington

Tomato Tart

What was on your Summer Bucket list this year? 

  • 🍦Make Homemade Ice Cream ✅

  • 🚵‍♀️Take a Bike Ride ✅

  • 🍉 Have a Picnic ✅

  • 🌄 Watch the Sunrise ✅

  • 🗯 Make Giant Bubbles ✅

  • 🏕 Go Backpacking ✅

  • 😎 See the Eclipse 2017 ✅

  • 🔥 Have a Bonfire ✅

  • 🍇 Go to a Vineyard ✅

  • 🍅 Make a Tomato Tart ✅✅✅

You still have time to finish off your List and make this amazing Tomato Tart because officially summer doesn't end until September 22nd!

Why is it that we always have a Summer Bucket List but never get around to doing hardly anything on the list?  Somehow it passes and yeah we might have gone hiking or ate a s'more or two but we seem to miss out on the simple things like playing with bubbles or watching the stars outside.

 Summer seems to come to an end when school starts and yet for most of us school isn't starting in fact, it's still the same week as last week with work on Monday and ending on Friday.  So don't let your work week keep you from this good news: the sun is still shining and it is still a little warm. You still have time to have some fun!  

Do you have something on your bucket list you haven't checked off yet?  Pick one thing and do it, NOW!  Your kids will love you, because you just extended summer and showed them that it's okay to have a picnic, or make homemade ice cream in September.

  It's okay to make a plan to go outside and stretch the limits of summer.  In fact maybe your summer tomatoes are just now coming to their peak.  That is definitely the case if you live in the PNW.  It takes September for the tomato to be at it's best.  

Whatever you do make sure you take some time to smile 😊 and enjoy a little something you love because after all that's what a bucket list is all about. 

And remember the Fall Bucket List is just around the corner...🍁🍂🍁


  •  1 PIe/Tart Crust (Get Crust Recipe Here)

  • 2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard

  • 2 Tablespoons Grain Mustard

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil

  • 1-2 teaspoons dry herbs de provence 

  • 2 large Heirloom Tomatoes

  • 1 pint small tomatoes

  • Salt- 1-2 teaspoons for draining tomatoes

  • Fleur de Sel or finishing salt to taste

Step 1

Make Crust and pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Pre-bake crust for  10 minutes.  Slice large tomatoes and place on paper towels and salt.  Allow salt to drain tomatoes of liquid then pat dry. 

Step 2

Mix mustards together in a small bowl. After crust cools, using the back of a spoon or a brush, brush mustards onto bottom of pre-baked crust.  Next layer tomatoes on top of mustard.  Sprinkle herbs over tomatoes and drizzle olive oil.  

Step 3

Bake tomato tart for about 30 minutes at 400 degrees or until crust is golden brown and tomatoes have shriveled slightly. Finish with Fleur de Sel to taste.

Tomato Tart with Mustard



  • Tomatoes can be pre-sliced and salted up to 1 hour prior and allowed to drain

  • Choose the best tomatoes you can find as this is your prime ingredient

  • Now is the time to use those slightly overripe tomatoes

  • Add a little fresh basil afterwards on top and serve with a salad dressed in a vinaigrette

  • A nice Dry Rosé goes wonderfully with this summer tart