How To Make Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs

Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs Are Easy!

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My grandson showed me how to get perfect hard boiled eggs every time! He’s going to be a chef and he practices his art daily at the restaurant where he works while finishing high school.

Perfect hard boiled eggs
Perfect hard boiled eggs every time using this method.

Over the holidays, he came to help me prep the food for the big gathering. Two dozen eggs were needed for deviled eggs. Here’s what he taught me and the proof is in the picture.

1- Spin each egg on the counter until it stops wobbling. This centers the yolk so you have an attractive slice for salads and a stable white for deviled eggs.

2- Cold eggs, cold water – 17 minutes on high from start to finish

3- Have an ice bath ready when the timer goes off after 17 minutes

4- When eggs have cooled, remove them from the ice bath, shell them immediately, and store in a gallon storage bag in the fridge.

That’s it. Perfect every time I’ve done it since.

Beer Burger North Liberty With Friends

Beer Burger Now Open in North Liberty!

Beer Burger in North Liberty, Iowa
Beer Burger in North Liberty, Iowa
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Our group has been waiting impatiently for Beer Burger to open and now it is! We met for a dinner meeting last night to check it out.

We had a group of 7 and between us we had:

Kale Artichoke dip with garlic naan and veggies – generous portion – three of us worked on it and half the dip remained. The naan was gobbled up though – irresistable!

Various burger renditions with fries. All were yummy – the regular fries are addictive; I can only imagine how good the upgraded fries could be. One friend ordered the appetizer sliders instead of a burger because she wasn’t hungry enough for a whole burger – her three sliders combined were as big, if not bigger than our regular burgers – and the presentation was adorable (little pickle bits on picks – so sweet).

Two in our group ordered salads – they were large and looked very nice. The word was “delicious”. One only ordered a shake – watching the diet, you know. It was a regular size glass, but decorated with chocolate and sprinkles on the sides, whipped cream and a cherry on top. She said that made it a little too sweet, but it was OK. We thought the perfect dinner of the future might be a chocolate shake with no fancy trim and an order of regular fries. Could be heaven.

How’s the Beer at Beer Burger?

Beer: You’re probably wondering about the Beer, right? After all, it’s in the name and all. Beer Burger is known for their “keg room” – a glass enclosed area that can hold over 200 kegs. They have a big list of tap beers at the bar, also. Mixed drinks and cocktails are available too.

It was Happy Hour when we were there, but only certain things were included and that turned out to be none of what we ordered. The first request was for a Millstream Pale Ale and they were out. 🙁   So let’s have a Stella instead. “Out of that too, sorry” 🙁   OK, so what do we have that’s similar? Turns out the beer list is sorted by the various attributes, so if you feel like studying, you can find a sub for what you really wanted.

There are “tasting” opportunities at $ per ounce – that was the biggest thing we heard mentioned as we chatted with friends around the room. “I got this much and it was $5.40! So… lesson learned. But if you were actually on a beer adventure – this would definitely be the place!

Beer Burger is Popular!

The place is huge – their theme is a very industrial look, and within 30 minutes of opening it was full. They open at 4 and we were waiting. When we left after dinner, it was still full with a short line. That was on a Wednesday night at 7.

Two people in our group had tried to come earlier in the week. On Friday or Saturday the parking was clear out to the road and the line was too long so they left. That speaks well for support from our small town. The word is that other popular and similar establishments in town aren’t hurting, so I think we had room for more places like this.

All in all, it was a great time. A little noisy for great conversation, but perfectly fine for casual friendly chat. There were some TVs, but not a huge saturation like your typical sports bar. Service was more than excellent and the food was tasty and fun. Our food arrived pretty quickly also; but we were settled in a little ahead of the huge crowd.

I can highly recommend and I know for sure I will be back!

 

Good Soup Created Accidentally With Leftover Chicken

Good Soup Can Just Happen Sometimes

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There are times when I create good soup that I think I should go the route of food blogs with the overhead camera and the nifty ingredient tricks (Snap! Chopped!) but I always decide that it’s not worth it for the actual amount I cook.

Good Soup: Leftover Chicken with mixed veggies, tomatoes, and black beans.
Good Soup: Leftover Chicken with mixed veggies, tomatoes, and black beans.

Yesterday, against all prior planning, I accidentally created some really good soup. Let’s start at the beginning with just a little bit of background. I love those deli chickens because they’re easy and tasty when compared to messing around with raw chicken and roasting to savory goodness. My intention is always to use the best white meat atop a lunch salad and then find frugal and efficient ways to use the rest.

What usually happens instead is that I fail at matching up available fresh greens with the chicken and never get my delicious salad. I have even (gasp) ended up wasting the chicken. 🙁   But this weekend I bought greens and chicken, and in a burst of Monday inspired efficiency, carved it up and made a delicious salad on my lunch break.

I don’t know exactly what possessed me (probably the chilly rain outside), but I grabbed a 2 qt pot and started tossing the dark meat and tiny scraps of chicken in.

Ingredient: Good Soup Needs Roasted Chicken Bits

My pantry is full of canned goods, so I added a can of mixed vegetables and pondered spices for a minute, but turned the burner on to get a feel for what I had created with these two ingredients so far. (It’s how I roll.)

As you can guess, the combination left something to be desired and would surely leave me wanting pizza for dinner if I didn’t look around for flavor. I threw in a can of diced tomatoes for color and additional veggie goodness. Still lacking something. Oh, right – it lacks flavor.

Ingredient: Good Soup Needs Garlic and Onion

I have some garlic paste in a tube that I’m trying to use up – so I added about an inch and a half as a start (equiv of 1-2 cloves). Then I grabbed a fistful of frozen onions and turned up the heat. Started mixing salt and pepper in a small ingredient bowl and threw them in as the mixture started boiling. After a few minutes, I turned the heat back and cleaned up my chicken chopping mess and went back to work.

Garlic inspires me. The aroma drifted into my home office and pulled me back to the stove for tasting. I also had a timer I carried back to work with me so I wouldn’t forget to check. At this point, the chicken and vegetables were coming together into a very suitable 1st course for dinner. I could have stopped at this point with just the addition of a little more salt.

Ingredient: Good Soup Needs 1 More Something

I was so close to perfect I actually stood there and stared into the pan for a few minutes thinking through what else I had in the freezer or pantry that would take this over the top for me. Noodles? Some other pasta? Beans? That’s it! One of my favorites is White Bean Chicken Chili and I always keep canned beans around in the winter. But when I opened the pantry door, the first thing in view was a stack of black beans I had carried home with no plan other than a healthy addition to something. Bingo!

Ingredients: Here’s The Whole List

Scraps of deli roasted chicken – I probably had about 3/4 cup of dark meat and tiny bits of leftover white meat.

Cans – 1 Mixed Vegetables, 1 Diced Tomatoes, 1 Black Beans – liquid and all – just open and dump them in

Flavor – 1 handful of frozen chopped onions – probably 3/4 cup if you feel the need to measure. It could have used more, but I didn’t want to play with the temperature up and downs again. 1 and 1/2 inches of garlic paste from the tube in the fridge – equivalent to 1-2 cloves. Salt and pepper to taste – probably 1/2 – 1 teaspoon each. I added more salt a couple of times during the simmer.

That’s it. I ended up eating 2 bowls with crackers for dinner and skipping the meal I had planned. It was so good and I have enough for 2-3 bowls left over for lunch today.