Cook's Corner: Marinades make for tasty treats

Published 7:18 pm Wednesday, April 26, 2006

By By Lisa Tindell
I promised to cover a variety of marinades for this week's column, and I certainly don't want to break a promise to those of you who read faithfully.
I have really enjoyed talking with some of the readers of Cook's Corner. It warms my heart to know that you may get a giggle, a snicker or a really good meal from what you read in this space.
I've got a feeling folks may start spending a little more time in the back yard in the coming months. Not only because it's summer, but who can afford to &#8220go” anywhere with the price of gasoline. I can almost bet, though, that when you spend a few quality hours each weekend in the backyard with your family and friends, you'll wonder why you thought you had to &#8220go” out anyway.
The Friday evening before Easter, our church group got together to have a twilight Easter Egg Hunt for the children. Boy what fun! We gathered a little before 6 p.m. and through hours of fun for both children and adults, we hardly even realized the time. Unless someone hadn't gotten up to move their chair to get away from the smoke of the campfire and happened to look at their watch, I guess we would have been there well after midnight. What a grand time. Fire, food, friends and fun! It doesn't get much better than that!
Anyway, if you do spend a little more time around the campfire or grill this summer, these recipes will give you a chance to add a little flavor and tenderness to your meat. Most marinades will not only infuse flavor into the meat, but will also after an opportunity to tender the cut of meat. Therefore, if you buy a little cheaper cut of meat, a marinade will do wonders for it!
The more acidic ingredients in a marinade, the more likely it is to give a tenderizing effect. Choose the perfect marinade to compliment the meat you plan to cook.
Lemon Pepper Marinade
2 tbsp. olive oil
One-half small onion, finely minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary
One-fourth cup fresh lemon juice
fresh course ground black pepper, to taste
grated zest of one lemon
Mix all the ingredients and use the marinade immediately. Place meat or fish in a large zip-top bag or plastic container. Cover or seal the bag and marinate in the refrigerator 2-4 hours. Grill or broil meat as desired. (This recipe is especially good on fish but is fine with chicken, pork or beef.)
If you want to add a little something different, this next recipe will give you some spice to your next meat cook-out.
Mediterranean Marinade
1 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup fresh lemon juice
Two-thirds cup red wine vinegar
3 tbsp. chopped oregano
2 tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 cups olive oil
Mix all ingredients except oil together. Blend until smooth in food processor. Slowly add oil while blending. Place meat in plastic container. Cover meat with marinade and refrigerator for two hours or overnight. Grill or broil as desired.
This next recipe sort of surprised me. I don't think I've ever heard of a marinade that had tomatoes in it or left out some kind of oil. This one sounded unusual but had enough interesting ingredients to lure me into including it in column.
Dr. Pepper Marinade
1 can (14.5 ounces) tomatoes
One-fourth cup finely chopped onions
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
One-half tsp. allspice
One-quarter tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
One-half tsp. cayenne pepper
1 can (12 ounces) Dr. Pepper
Puree tomatoes; add to a one-quart saucepan with onions, Worcestershire sauce, allspice, salt, and peppers.
Bring to a boil, then simmer for five minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in Dr. Pepper.
Use to marinate chicken for 2 to 4 hours or overnight.
Here's one for you folks who like to live on the wild side.
Jack Daniels Marinade
1 cup Jack Daniels whiskey
one-half cup peanut oil
one-half cup cider vinegar
one-half cup ketchup
2 tbsp. nutmeg ground fresh
2 tbsp. instant coffee powder
one-fourth cup honey
3 tbsp. salt
2 tsp. Tabasco sauce
3 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. black pepper
2 tbsp. ground cloves
Mix all liquid ingredients together in a sauce pan over med-heat. Add dry ingredients and continue to stir for one minute. Reduce heat to simmer five minutes. Remove from heat. Pour over meats, poultry or vegetables and cover. Refrigerate for 4-24 hours.
Call me when the coals are ready

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