Dorian Burns-Coyne enjoys cooking, but he was frustrated by trying to find meal inspiration when he got home from a long day at his job in advertising.
The single man scoured websites, but “a lot of times the recipes would call for types of equipment or processes I didn’t know or ingredients I didn’t have, and it would just end up being a hassle more than anything.”
So he founded Blade & Skillet, a subscription-based cooking website that offers recipes and short how-to videos designed for young professionals, although he says they can appeal to any age.
The concept is that most of the 70 recipes on the site can be made in 30 minutes or less by inexperienced home cooks with a knife and a pan.
“I actually try to limit my kitchen to the amount of equipment I have so I don’t get accustomed to it,” says Burns-Coyne, who falls into the 18- to 34-year-old millennial target audience.
“People are often surprised I don’t have food processors and all types of blenders and that type of stuff. Not everyone has those things and if you’re not cooking often it can be much more intimidating.”
Here is one of Burns-Coyne’s single-serving recipes from Blade & Skillet along with an easy dish from Tony Cammalleri, corporate chef at Pusateri’s Fine Foods, that can be divided into single servings and frozen.
Seared strip loin
This simple supper for one has few ingredients.
1 strip loin steak or steak of choice
1/2 onion, peeled and sliced
8 baby potatoes, scrubbed
Kosher salt and coarse ground pepper, to taste
Place steak on a paper towel and preheat oven to 245 C (475 F).
In a skillet, melt a knob of butter on medium-high heat. When heated, add onion; cook for 25 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a bowl, place potatoes. Melt additional butter and drizzle over potatoes; season with salt and pepper and mix. Spread on a cookie sheet and roast for 18 to 20 minutes.
Pat steak dry with paper towel. Season well on both sides with salt and pepper. Move onion over and grill steak in same skillet, 5 minutes a side (medium rare for a thick steak).
Plate steak next to baby potatoes; heap caramelized onion over steak. Garnish with parsley, if desired. Let steak rest for a few minutes before cutting.
Makes 1 serving.
Source: Blade & Skillet
Braised chicken with porcini mushrooms and dubonnet
Chef Tony Cammalleri of Pusateri’s Fine Foods calls this braised chicken a comfort-style bistro dish. It can be frozen in smaller portions, defrosted and heated up without losing its integrity or taste.
1 chicken, cut into eighths
50 g porcini mushrooms
500 ml (2 cups) warm water
Flour, for dredging
Salt and pepper, to taste
Olive oil, for sauteing
1 onion, diced
100 g (3 1/2 oz) pancetta, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
125 ml (1/2 cup) Dubonnet liqueur
500 ml (2 cups) chicken stock
Fresh thyme, chopped
250 ml (1 cup) 35 per cent cream
In a bowl, soak porcini mushrooms for 1 hour in warm water.
Dredge chicken pieces in flour seasoned with salt and pepper. Fry in olive oil in a high-edged saute pan with a lid until golden on all sides. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
Drain mushrooms, reserving liquid. Add more olive oil to pan, as needed, and saute onion, pancetta and porcini mushrooms. Add garlic and saute, being careful not to burn.
Deglaze with Dubonnet, porcini liquid and chicken stock. Season with thyme, salt and pepper.
Return chicken to pot and cover. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 1 hour. Check internal temperature of chicken. Once the largest piece of chicken reaches an internal temperature of 350 C (180 F) it is ready. Remove lid from pan and continue cooking until liquid is further reduced.
Stir in cream.
Freezing steps: Place chicken recipe in freezer-safe containers in single or double portion sizes. Defrost overnight in fridge. The next day reheat for 30 minutes in pan on the stove or in the oven at 160 C (325 F).
Makes 4 portions for single or 2 double portions
Source: Pusateri’s Fine Foods