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KISS Ribs June 3, 2018

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes, Diary of a Wandering Foodie.
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Summertime is upon us – women look better, beer tastes colder and, for some reason, we’re drawn like a magnet to the outside grill. In past posts, we’ve talked about some great grilling ideas, such as

  • Argentinean flank steak
  • Six-Pack Chicken
  • Smoked Brisket
  • Tacos de Carne Asada (Grilled Beef Tacos)

This summer, let’s talk about ribs on the grill.  They are inexpensive, healthier than you think, and easy to prepare, especially with our KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) recipe.


Homemade Corned Beef Hash May 23, 2017

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes.
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Corned Beef Hash

If you want something special for breakfast, this is the dish.  I have always loved corned beef hash, even the canned varieties.  Recently, while staying at the

Greenbriar Hotel in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, I had their famous homemade corned beef hash with two poached eggs on top.  It was outrageously good and I became committed to reproduce the dish at home.  While I won’t claim to have surpassed the Greenbriar, I think you will find this recipe very good.

This recipe starts with a whole flat cut corned brisket just like the ones that are always sold around St. Patrick’s Day.  “Corned” simply means a brisket that has been brined for 2-3 days.  This was a technique used in pre-refrigeration days to preserve the meat.  Now, we continue the tradition because of the resulting slightly salty taste and interesting texture.

Corned beef is often boiled, but I suggest a technique from Mauigirl, where she braises the brisket in the oven rather than boiling it.  It works great.  I like to put the brisket in the oven when I go to bed (about 10:00PM) and take it out when I get up (about 6:00AM).  If I have a big group to feed, I have time to get the hash prepared and make a big deal of the whole process and serve an incredible breakfast.

The Science of Cooking Brisket

Tougher cuts of meat like brisket or pork shoulder (really the butt) have a lot of connective tissue, made up of collagen and elastin, which slowly dissolves over time during cooking.  The process usually takes 6-8 hours.  Once the collagen and elastin have “melted”, the meat will be beautifully tender, as long as you haven’t applied so much heat that the meat is completely dried out.  Long, slow braising at a low temperature is the only way to cook these cuts.  When braising, a little liquid is added and the dish is covered.

Here’s how to make your homemade corned beef hash.

The Brisket:


  • Corned Beef – flat cut brisket (this is the typical way they are offered around St. Patrick’s Day)
  • 1 onion – sliced
  • 6 garlic – peeled and smashed
  • 2 tbsp. Kitchen Bouquet – this helps in browning
  • ¼ cup water


  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
  2. Wash and dry the corned beef brisket, discard any flavoring packet, and brush with Kitchen Bouquet.
  3. Heat 2 tbsp. vegetable oil in a large pan and brown the brisket for 2 minutes on each side.
  4. Brush the corned beef with Kitchen Bouquet and place in a roasting pan on a rack Add the onion, garlic and water, and cover tightly with aluminum foil.
  5. Bake for at least 8 hours.   Throw it in the oven when  go to bed, but make sure you remember to take it out in the morning!  The internal temperature should be about 210 degrees.DSC_0004
  6. Put into the refrigerator for an hour. This will make it easier to chop and dice

It is interesting to note that a 3lb. corned beef will yield only about 1.5-2.0  lbs. of meat after cooking and removing fat.  There is a lot of water in the beef.  You will get about 6 cups of diced meat.

The Hash

This recipe produces a large batch of corned beef hash which you can serve to a big group or freeze in smaller batches to use as needed.  Freezing works just fine as long as you use non-starchy potatoes like red or Yukon Gold varieties.  The object is to cook the potatoes about about three-quarters of the way and then dice.  They freeze and reheat better this way.  We also cook a little more before serving, so it works just fine.

Serves: 12


  • 6 cups of diced brisket as cooked above
  • 6 cups of non-starchy potatoes, like red or Yukon gold, unpeeled and quartered
  • 2 onions – diced
  • 1 red pepper – diced
  • ½ tsp. each of salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • ½ tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 tbsp. Worchestershire sauce
  • 1 bunch of fresh parsley


  1. Take the corned beef brisket out of the pan and put on a cutting board.  Save one cup of the juices in the bottom of the roasting pan.
  2. Dice the corned beef into ¼ inch cubes and set aside.  This is most easily done slicing the brisket across the grain and then, working with three or four slices, cut into cubes.  Remove any excess fat.  If the corned beef brisket has been cooked sufficiently, this will be a very easy process.DSC_0005
  3. Boil the potatoes with the skin intact for no more than 10 minutes. They should still be relatively firm.  Drain and set aside to cool.
  4. When potatoes are cool, dice into 1/4 inch cubes.
  5. Add the olive oil to a large pan and cook the onions and peppers until they just begin to soften.
  6. Add the reserved brisket, potatoes, red pepper flakes, parsley, salt and pepper to the pan and heat until warm. Add a little of the retained juices if too dry.DSC_0201
  7. Serve and enjoy.

Serving Techniques:

  1. Make a bed of hash and cook or poach two eggs and serve on top of the hash. Toss some parsley on top and you have a gorgeous breakfast dish.
  2. Serve the warm hash by itself with vegetables like broccoli or cauliflower for lunch or dinner.  Ketchup and Tabasco are good accompaniments.


Put portions of 2 cups each into plastic bags and freeze until needed.  Each package will serve two people.  Take a frozen package out of the freezer at night and put into the refrigerator.  It will be thawed by morning.


  • Make Cauliflower Rice Hash and omit the potatoes. Chop the cauliflower in a food processor or grate with a food grater to make rice-sized pieces. Add the cauliflower to the sauteed onions and garlic. Proceed with the recipe.
  • Stir in your favorite spices such as thyme, parsley, chives or sage.
  • Instead of Worchestershire, add one of your favorite sauces, such as a BBQ sauce or a good hot sauce.




Hangtown Fries April 28, 2017

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes, Diary of a Wandering Foodie.
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Hangtown Fries served with Homemade Corned Beef Hash

A friend of mine, who also happens to be a Federal Judge, invited me to breakfast last week and served Hangtown Fries.  This exceptional dish is basically bacon, eggs and fried oysters, and it has a very interesting history. (more…)

Granola – An American Classic May 18, 2016

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2016-05-15 11.39.33

Maybe the Europeans might claim title to the inventors of granola.  They have something called Muesli in Switzerland.  However, in my mind granola is a truly American classic.  Invented in California in the 60’s by hippies and Seventh Day Adventists, it has grown non-stop ever since.  Rolling Stone has the full history on-line at:  a-social-history-of-granola

The exciting thing about granola is that it is soooo easy to make at home.  Once you try it, you will probably never get the store bought stuff again. (more…)

Fudge – An American Classic December 3, 2015

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes.


With the Holiday Season quickly approaching, it is time to start thinking of all the sweet things we can make. Here is a great one –  fudge using three different types of chocolate, two of which are dark.  It’s wonderful and creamy and, most importantly, justifiable. Ah yes, we all know that dark chocolate is very good for you – micronutrients and antioxidants and such (check out fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/6-health-benefits-of-dark-chocolate.html.) (more…)

As American as Apple Pie December 16, 2014

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Apple Pie

Apple Pie

I hate clichés, but what is more American than apple pie? We have to have this in our list of classic recipes. There are a thousand little variations usually with names like Grandma’s apple pie or Aunt Rosie’s famous recipe. They are all good, I’m sure, but this recipe below is mind blowing good and very easy. I adapted it from one that I found on AllRecipes.com (a great site) from someone named Moshasmama. (more…)

The Bourbon Burger – An American Classic March 3, 2014

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes, Classic Grilling Recipes.


So, my son-in-law, Patrick, and I were having a cocktail and he was wondering why we didn’t have the hamburger as an American classic on the website.  I said that I could never come up with anything interesting or unique to say about the ubiquitous “burger”.  He said maybe we needed to get alcohol involved in some way.  I had to agree.  After all, we had posted a great recipe called “Six-Pack Chicken” from another son-in-law, Andy. (more…)

Mom’s Chicken Pot Pie November 5, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes.
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Mom's Chicken Pot Pie

Mom’s Chicken Pot Pie

My mother recently passed away.  She was 91 and lived a rich, full life.  She was a great cook and is certainly one of the reasons I spend so much time in the kitchen.  A few years ago, she collected her favorite recipes as well as the favorite family recipes of her parents and her extended family (three children and 12 grandchildren).  She found photos of each of the family members to put beside the recipes with some comments by her.  Everything was copied and bound in handmade, padded binders.  Everyone got a copy – very cool.  This was one of the recipes from the “Family Cookbook”.  (more…)

Make Your Own Pizza – Part 2 – Thincrust Beauties May 10, 2013

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes.
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Pizza - Thin crust - Margarita

Pizza – Thin crust – Margarita

If you want a great event for kids or grandkids, or, if you want an innovative dinner party idea, this is it – Make Your Own Pizza (The Thincrust Version). (more…)

Cinnamon Rolls – Recently Named an American Classic May 3, 2013

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Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon Rolls

I really think that cinnamon rolls are an American classic dish, but maybe I’ve been brainwashed by Cinnabon.  The best test might be random interviews.  If we stopped 20 people on the street, would all of them know about and like cinnamon rolls?  I thought about carrying out the experiment, but why waste the time – we know what the answers will be.   As a world renown food blogger, I will put my reputation on the line and officially proclaim cinnamon rolls an American classic.   Comments please. (more…)

Chili 101 December 18, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes, Recipes.
Chili with Skillet Cornbread
Chili with Skillet Cornbread

If there were ever an American classic, it must be chili.  And, you will need this dish sometime during the Holidays.  Even though the name sounds like it must have a Mexican origin, the dish is not really known there.  I did business in Mexico for 30 years and traveled extensively throughout the country.  I never ate anything resembling chili.  Take my word for it, this is an American thing – started in Texas and most likely in San Antonio where they still have the great chili cook offs every year.  Actually, there is a Chili Appreciation Society (http://www.chili.org) that lists about 200 cook-offs, of which about 95% are in Texas.


Braised Short Ribs with Red Wine Reduction over Garlic Mashed Potatoes November 14, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes.

So, we are at a dinner party and my friend Bob asks me what is my favorite thing before dinner.  I think he was talking about drinks, but my mind wandered.  (more…)

Bravado Diary – Friday Night Fishfry September 9, 2012

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Pan Fried Perch

After playing golf, a good friend suggested that I have dinner at his house.  Gary is wine fanatic and I knew there would be some liquid treats involved.   He owns a company that rates wines, The Beverage Tasting Institute, which has a great website.  They have no financial relations with any of the vintners, who have to pay to have their wines rated, and therefore the results are very objective.

His wife Priscilla is a great cook and has appeared before on Bravado Cooking in A Perfect Super Bowl.  When I heard she was cooking perch, I immediately accepted the invitation.

Freshwater perch are, in my opinion, one of the great fish dishes.  When I was young, my grandfather would take me fishing on Cedar Lake in Indiana.  It was a great lake for perch and other pan fish.  Cleaning was laborious, but my grandmother would lightly bread and deep-fry the little filets and we soon forgot the work.  It was wonderful. (more…)

Caesar Salad – An American Classic July 26, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes, Classic Salads, Recipes.

Caesar Salad with Spaghetti alla Carbonara

After WWI a young Italian named Caesar Cardini emigrated to America and settled in San Diego.  He worked in hotels and restaurants while he learned English.  But, Italians have something in their DNA that prompts them to get into the restaurant business, so he opened a restaurant in San Diego in 1923.  The restaurant business wasn’t easy in those days, or did we forget that in 1920, the 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was passed and the country entered the era of Prohibition.  Young Caesar wisely spotted this as an opportunity, and he opened a restaurant in Tijuana – 15 miles south of San Diego, but across the border and free of rules about alcohol.  He opened Caesar’s Place in 1924 and later Caesar’s Café and finally Hotel Caesar’s, which still exists today. (more…)

Six-Pack Chicken – An American Classic June 15, 2012

Posted by Bravado Cooking for Men in Classic American Dishes, Classic Grilling Recipes, Recipes.
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Six-Pack Chicken

I wanted to continue with our series on French Classics, but I have run out of things that I know how to make.  I usually like to make a dish at least twice so that I can proceed to talk like the renowned expert that I am, but I’m going through a period of laziness and can’t get up for Vol Au Vent.  This languor made me think of Andy’s Six Pack Chicken, a wonderful slow method of making that great American Classic – BBQ Chicken.

Summertime, sunshine and weekends seem to make guys think of firing up the grill and drinking some beer.  This recipe is the perfect answer to that urge and creates some special fun – women get a chance to complain about the beer drinking and the men get to smile at each other and continue dong what they “damn well please”, while having good reason to do so. (more…)


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