Breakfast Like A Boss – Maple-Fig Wheat Berry Oatmeal

One of my very favorite Breakfast recipes – Rustic.  Wholesome.  Full of flavor & texture contrast.  Loaded with an abundance of nutrients, healthy fats, complex carbohydrates & rich, muscle-building proteins.

Earthy Whole-Grains of Steel Cut Oats.  Hearty Wheat Berries.  Gorgeous Slices of Fresh California Black Mission Figs.  Chopped, Coarsely Seasoned & Roasted Almonds.  Vanilla Greek Yogurt.  Organic Northern Michigan Maple Syrup.  Dusting of Ground Cinnamon & Nutmeg.  And… Coffee Beans to create an illusion of a semi-dysfunctional, yet purposely artistic dynamic within the Photograph.

Editorial Note: Do not put coffee beans in your Oatmeal – 1. This would not be tasty. 2. You’d probably end up strolling around all day with black bits of coffee grinds between your teeth = not attractive. 3. Do I need a 3?!

Now… Grab those Grains, fuel up your Human Hot Rod & prepare for a full day of kicking A$$ & taking names.  Well… taking names not absolutely necessary, but it may be cordial to grab a few in passing.  Either way, start strong & ENJOY this bowl of Breakfast Heaven!

#oatmeallikeaboss #breakfastofchampions #doabodygood #eatrealfood #leancleanandmean #riseandshine

 

Breakfast Like A Boss - Maple-Fig Wheat Berry Oatmeal

Breakfast Like A Boss – Maple-Fig Wheat Berry Oatmeal

 

 

Maple-Fig Wheat Berry Oatmeal

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Servings: 2
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • 4 Cups Water
  • 1 Cup Steel-Cut Oatmeal
  • 1/2 Cup Wheat Berries
  • 4-6 Black Mission Figs rinsed and sliced
  • 1 Cup Vanilla Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 Cup Almonds chopped
  • 1/4 Cup Pure Maple Syrup
  • 2 Pinches Table Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt to taste
  • Fresh Ground Cinnamon & Nutmeg to taste

Instructions

  • Bring 1 1/2 cups of water & a pinch of table salt to raging boil in a pot.
  • Pour in wheat berries, reduce heat to a simmer, cover & cook for 1 hour, or until berries are tender & water absorbed.
  • Set aside for 2-3 minutes to cool, covered.
  • After 30 minutes of boiling wheat berries, in a separate pot, bring 2 1/2 cups of water & a pinch of table salt to a raging boil.
  • Pour in steel cut oats, reduce heat to a simmer, cover & cook for 30 minutes, or until oats are tender & water absorbed.
  • Set aside for 2-3 minutes to cool, covered.
  • Meanwhile, in cast iron skillet, toss almonds with olive oil & kosher salt.
  • Over medium heat roast almonds until golden brown & fragrant, tossing gently to ensure even cooking.
  • Remove from heat & set aside to rest.
  • In 2 separate serving bowls, spoon 1/2 of oatmeal & 1/2 of wheat berries, mixing together with 1/8 cup of maple syrup, 1/2 cup of vanilla greek yogurt & figs.
  • Top oatmeal with maple syrup & almonds, dusting with cinnamon & nutmeg.
  • Serve warm & enjoy!

Notes

Recommendation: If you know this recipe is on the breakfast menu tomorrow morning, soak oats & wheat berries over night in water. This will reduce cooking time by 50-75%. For every one cup of oats or wheat berries, add 1 1/2 cups of water. When you awake the water will be absorbed. Heat the grains with a reduced amount of water in boiling pot, or nuke in the microwave for 3-5minutes.

 

Black Mission Mojitos

 

For those who are yet introduced to the fig, this fruit is from the mulberry family.  It’s native to Asia and the Mediterranean, and prized for both its aesthetics and health benefits.  Grown on ficus trees in moderate & temperate climates, figs have a shorter growing season in early summer, and then again from late summer through fall.  This fruit is not only extraordinarily beautiful, but soft and tender to the touch.  It offers an incredible sweetness and unique texture in form of the fruit’s fine seeds.  Because of it’s honey-like sweetness, the fig is often used in desserts, but I love using it as a means to creatively cut through bold, savory flavors.

If you live in the Midwest or Northeast of America, finding an abundance of fresh figs is a rarity.  When selecting figs at the market, the fruit should be tender to the touch with slightly wrinkled skin, yet plump with a stem that has a slight bit of bend.  The fruit should not be shrunken, squishy, have any splits or a milky substance around the stem. And always check the underside of the fig container. This fruit does not keep long and mold can form.

Also, you are on a fig’s time.  The fig is not on yours and figs wait for no one.  Figs will keep longer in the refrigerator, but begin incrementally losing the fruit’s inherent sweetness and natural flavors when refrigerated.  Figs are best kept in open air, but they don’t keep long so make sure you are purchasing to consume ASAP!

One of my favorite – Black Mission Mojitos – embraces everything wonderful about the fig, then exponentially amplifies its uniquely natural sweetness alongside crisp, fresh leaves of mint, acidity of the lime, & smooth, chilled white rum.  But, if you truly want to take this beverage from fantastic to phenomenal infuse the white rum with fresh sliced figs.

You’ll have to plan ahead – 3 days ahead, to be exact.  Day one, rum + figs.  Day two, nada.  On day three, strain seeds from the liquid, return rum to bottle, chill, and make mixology magic happen.  Each beverage takes only a few minutes to prepare & assuredly will be the star of you party – ensure plenty of figs, rum, mint & soda in stock!

So, out with the same ‘ole booze, brews & cocktails – It’s time to kick up your creativity & take your libation game to the next level!!

Cheers!

 

Black Mission Mojitos

Black Mission Mojitos

 

Black Mission Mojitos

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Servings: 2 Mojitos
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • 2 fresh Black Mission or Adriatic striped figs plus additional slices for garnish
  • 1-2 lime wedges plus 1 ounce lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons sugar or to taste (substitute Stevia as needed)
  • 10 mint leaves separated from sprig
  • 3/4 cup crushed ice
  • 2 ounces white rum
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup club soda

Instructions

  • Place two sliced figs, lime wedge, lime juice and sugar in a cocktail glass. Muddle together.
  • Press the mint leaves with the back of a spoon to release the oils.
  • Add the mint leaves to the cocktail glass with muddled figs and mix together.
  • Top with Ice, then rum, vanilla and soda.
  • Stir, then garnish with a sliced fig and/or a fresh sprig of mint.

Notes

To create a fig-infused rum, rinse and slice 10-15 figs, then place the figs in a sealed bottle of light-colored rum for 72 hours. Strain. Chill. Reserve the remaining alcohol.

 

 

Balsamic-Fig BBQ Cornish Game Hen

Grilled Cornish Game Hen with Rustic Roasted Vegetables & Herbs from A Bachelor & His Grill.

Caramelized over this gorgeous Bird is the most amazing Balsamic & Fig BBQ Sauce.  Grilled to perfection & plated alongside Golden, Red Skinned & Blue Peruvian Potatoes.  Roasted Cloves of Garlic. Portobello Mushrooms.  Baby Carrots.  Shallots.  Walnuts.  Fresh Sprigs of Thyme & Coarse Seasonings.

 

Balsamic-Fig Barbeque Cornish Game Hen

Balsamic-Fig Barbeque Cornish Game Hen

 

Grilled Balsamic-Fig Barbeque Chicken

Prep Time4 hrs
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time5 hrs
Servings: 2
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • 2 cornish game hens giblet package removed
  • A Bachelor & His Grill's "Balsamic-Fig BBQ Sauce" (See Recipe Below)
  • Brine:
  • 4-5 quarts cold water ie. 16-20 cups
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • Dry Rub:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil plus additional for basting
  • 2 tablespoons chile powder
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt or to taste
  • 2 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 tablespoon granulated garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon granulated onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

Instructions

  • In a 6-8 quart container, dissolve salt into water.
  • Immerse hens in the brine, cover and refrigerate for 6-24 hours.
  • Remove hens from brine, thoroughly rinse inside and out under cold water, and pat dry.
  • Discard brine.
  • Place birds back in the refrigerator for 1 hour, uncovered, to additionally dry & tighten skin.
  • In food processor, pulse the chile powder, paprika, celery salt, pepper, dried thyme, garlic powder, onion powder, dry mustard, and cumin to create the rub.
  • Preheat the grill to medium, 300 degrees.
  • Drizzle the hens with olive oil inside and out, then massage a liberal amount of dry rub over all portions of the hens.
  • Once dry rub applied, allow at least 20 minutes for poultry to rest at room temperature.
  • Lay the hens directly upon the grill grates over indirect heat, breast side down, grilling for 8-12 minutes, or until well-defined char-marks in place.
  • Flip the birds & grill for additional 30 minutes, lightly basting intermittently with oil.
  • In final 10 minutes of grilling begin brushing on layers of the barbeque sauce, as one layer caramelizes over the previous.
  • Remove hens from grill when internal temperature of breast reaches 160 degrees, the thigh reaches 170 degrees, and juices in thigh run clear.
  • Using tongs & a spatula, carefully transfer hens to a tray or pan, cover with tin foil tent & allow to rest for 3-5 minutes, reabsorbing juices.
  • Season additionally to taste, slather with remaining bbq sauce, slice and serve.

 

Balsamic-Fig Barbeque Sauce

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 1 - 1.5 cups
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh black mission figs stems removed and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 vidalia onion finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar preferably fig-infused balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground black peppercorn
  • 1 teaspoons kosher salt or to taste

Instructions

  • In sauce pan over medium heat, bring olive oil to a gentle simmer.
  • Toss in onion & garlic, sauteing 3-5 minutes, or until fragrant & slightly wilted.
  • Add chopped figs, honey, water, & vinegar.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, leaving pan uncovered.
  • Stir occasionally until sauce reduced by 1/3, ~20-30 minutes.
  • Pour sauce into food processor & puree until smooth.
  • Return pureed sauce to pan, stirring in tomato paste, mustard & dry seasonings.
  • Uncovered, over medium heat, bring to gentle simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally until desired thickness achieved.
  • Season additionally, to taste, then set aside until ready for use.

 

 

Fresh Fig and Filet Mignon Flatbread

 

Grilled Whole-Grain Flatbread. Seared & Thinly Sliced Filet Mignon. Fresh Black Mission Figs. Chopped Salted&Roasted Walnuts. Sweet Spring Greens. Balsamic Reduction Glaze. Aged&Crumbled Blue Cheese. Dusted Coarse Seasonings & Ground Herbs.

Grill is hot. Beer is cold. Life is good.

Black Mission and Mignon Grilled Flatbread

Black Mission and Mignon Grilled Flatbread

 

Fresh Fig & Filet Mignon Grilled Flatbread

Prep Time4 hrs
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time4 hrs 15 mins
Servings: 2 -4
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • Flatbread:
  • 3 Cups whole wheat flour plus 1/2 cup for prepping dough rolling surface
  • 1 Cup warm water
  • 1 Package active dry yeast
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil plus additional for brushing flatbread
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon cracked black peppercorn or to taste
  • Flatbread Toppings:
  • 16 Ounces sliced filet mignon or steak cut of choice (see recipe below)
  • 2 Cups spring lettuce and arugula mix
  • 6 fresh black mission figs thinly sliced
  • 4-6 Ounces blue cheese
  • 1/3 Cup chopped walnuts salted & dry roasted
  • Balsamic reduction see recipe below

Instructions

  • In small bowl stir together 1/4 cup warm water & honey, then dissolve yeast. In food processor add 3 cups flour & salt, pulsing until well mixed. To food processor pour dissolved yeast mixture, oil, & remaining water, processing until dough mixture forms.
  • Meanwhile, dust clean working surface with flour. Knead dough by hand for 3-5 minutes, or until soft in texture, but firm in consistency. Place dough in large bowl, cover with damp towel, & allow to rise at room temperature for 2.5 hours.
  • When dough has risen, divide into 4 equal balls. Work the dough balls by pulling & folding dough in upon itself. Place dough back in bowl, brush exterior liberally with olive oil, cover bowl with damp towel & allow to rise for another hour.
  • Dust prep surface with 2-3 tablespoons flour, garlic powder, & salt. One dough ball at a time, with a rolling pin, press out uniformly to 1/8-1/4" thickness.
  • Preheat grill using 2-zone method in notes below.
  • Brush rolled pizza dough with olive oil & lay over hot, direct-heat grill grates. Grill side1 for 3-5 minutes, or until dough bubbles slightly & edges begin to brown, leaving sear marks on bottom of flatbread crust. Lightly brush non-grilled side of flatbread with olive oil. Flip dough over to non-grilled side & move to cooler, perimeter grates. Meanwhile, brush grilled side of dough with olive oil & dress flatbread with thinly sliced filet mignon, walnuts & blue cheese. Allow flatbread to grill over cooler grates until cheese has slightly melted & dough is cooked through, approximately 2-3 minutes. Remove flatbread to cooling tray & rest for 3-5 minutes.
  • Garnish with additional spring greens & arugula, sliced fresh figs, balsamic glaze, & additional seasoning, to taste. Serve hot, alongside a cold brewski (or two), & enjoy!

Notes

Creating a 2-zone Grilling Surface:
1-burner grill – leverage the warming shelf, lined with tin foil, to remove the meat from direct contact with the grill grates.
2-burner grill – heat the right side to hot and leave the left side off.
3-burner grill – heat the far right side to hot, the middle to low-medium and the left side off.
4-burner grill – heat the two right zones to high and leave the two left zones off.

 

Black Mission and Mignon Grilled Flatbread

Black Mission and Mignon Grilled Flatbread

 

Perfectly Grilled Filet Mignon

Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 2 -4
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • 16 Ounces filet mignon 2 8 ounce steaks, cut 1.5-2" thick
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil plus additional for basting
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
  • 2 pinches ground thyme leaves
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground peppercorn to taste

Instructions

  • In small bowl combine olive oil & herbs/seasonings. Rub liberal amount of mixture over all portions of the steaks, cover in resealable container & rest at room temperature for 1 hour.
  • Pre-heat grill to it's highest setting, targeting for temperatures between 600-700F.
  • Remove steaks from marinade & lay meat upon grill's hottest grates, over direct heat. With grill lid open, sear for 4-5 minutes per side, turning only once & basting with oil intermittently.
  • Move steaks over indirect heat, close grill lid, & cook to medium rare-medium. Removing the steaks from the grill between 130-135○F. Lightly brush with olive oil & tent with tin foil for 3-5 minutes, allowing the meat to reabsorb it's juices & arrive at serving temperature.
  • Season to taste & prepare to plate upon flatbread.

 

Sweet Balsamic Glaze

Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time25 mins
Servings: 1 /3 Cup
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • Cups balsamic vinegar
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon honey

Instructions

  • In saucepan over medium heat, bring to a low simmer balsamic vinegar, sugar, & honey, stirring occasionally for 15-20 minutes, or until reduced to approximately ⅓ Cup.
  • Remove balsamic reduction from heat & set aside to cool before application.

Notes

Glaze will firm after removing from heat - should have syrup-like consistency following cooling.

 

Sex is like Pizza

Sex is like Pizza

Traverse City Tart Cherry Bourbon BBQ Chicken

Question: What would make for a more epic weekend than throwing down a SURPRISE cookout for the bravest men in town & getting elbow deep in some crazy amazing BBQ??!
Answer: Nothing would make for a more epic weekend.

Well… This is EXACTLY what transpired a few weeks ago.  My kiddos, a couple friends & Your’s Truly decided to pack up our Backyard BBQ Party & go MOBILE!!  We picked up enough grub at the market to feed a moderately-sized community of Sumo Wrestlers & dropped by the Kentwood Fire Department, surprising the Firemen with an afternoon FEAST of Chicken, Grilled Corn on the Cob, all the Fixins, Sides & Chocolate Chip Cookies!

1. Most fantastic Backyard BBQ Ever. EVER.  2. Probably some of the best dudes I’ve ever grilled alongside – Looking forward to brews with my new friends (OFF-hours, of course).  3. Sumo Wrestlers have nothing on these hungry fellas – That Chicken was taken behind the Woodshed… Remaining were bones, select scraps & a slathering of BBQ Sauce unintentionally strewn across several areas of my face.

 

This recipe was perfect for the occasion – Bold & fearless (much like my brave fire-taming / life-saving friends at the fire department), combining flavors that are dynamic, a touch smoky, a little sweet, and all together perfect for your Backyard BBQ.  We begin with succulent, trimmed legs of chicken, massaged with a bold, spicy dry rub, and finished with a tangy cherry bourbon BBQ sauce inspired by my recent travels to the awe-inspiring coastlines of rustic, Northern Michigan – Wine and Cherry Country.

Why I love this recipe:

1. Lets get this out of the way.  This recipe combines 1 part Awesome + 1 part Delicious.  The play on Sweet and heat is incredible – the spicy dry rub, liberally applied to the chicken, contrasts perfectly with the tart, sweet flavors of the BBQ sauce which caramelizes over the bird legs in final minutes of grilling – making for the most fantastic sticky, juicy, smoky and tender chicken!

2. The creme de la creme a la finger food = meat on a stick.  OK – we’re amongst Friends here so let’s just be honest… Everyone loves meat on a stick!  The means by which the chicken legs are trimmed creates the perfect meat handle, ridding the drumstick of unnecessary tendons, fat & excess skin (and calories), leaving to grill a tender & succulent BBQ chicken meat lollipop.  Also, because the BBQ sauce is brushed on the meat (not on bone)… Your hands remain free of sauce and mess!  Just NO guarantees for sauce left remaining on your face!  Note: This method of frenching your chicken does take a few additional minutes, but well worth the while.

3. With a touch of forethought, this recipe can be taken from grill grates to guest’s plates within 25 minutes!  The dry rub and BBQ Sauce are easily made in advance and both can be stored for days.  It’s my recommendation to make the rub and sauce one night in advance.  As well, prepare and marinate your chicken over night.  Long & short… Time allocated to prep the night before = Less time huddled away in the kitchen during your BBQ Party & more time spent with family / friends.

So, whether cooking out in the backyard or on tailgate at the stadium, lay those marinated chicken legs over your hot grates, crack a 6’er of adult-flavored pops, grill boldly & make your fiesta great!

 

Bold. Spicy. Tart. Sweet. - The Rub and Sauce.

Bold. Spicy. Tart. Sweet. – The Rub and Sauce.

 

Traverse City Tart Cherry Bourbon BBQ Chicken

Traverse City Tart Cherry Bourbon BBQ Chicken

 

Traverse City Tart Cherry Bourbon BBQ Chicken

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 4 -6
Author: A Bachelor & His Grill

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds chicken legs drumsticks
  • Dry Rub
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground thyme
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • Tart Cherry Bourbon BBQ Sauce
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil plus additional for basting chicken
  • 2-3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 medium sweet onion diced
  • 2 ounces honey Bourbon whiskey
  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 cups tart cherries pitted

Instructions

  • With a sharp knife, trim around the chicken legs, removing the tendons, additional fat and skin.
  • Combine the smoked paprika, garlic powder, thyme, salt, pepper, brown sugar, cayenne pepper and chili powder in a large bowl. Massage into the chicken, liberally coating.
  • Place the chicken into an air-tight container and marinate in the refrigerator for one hour or up to overnight.
  • Meanwhile, make the sauce. Bring the olive oil to a gentle simmer over medium heat in a sauce pan.
  • Add the garlic and onion, sauteing 3-5 minutes or until tender and fragrant.
  • Add the whiskey, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, water, ground mustard, Worcestershire sauce, ginger, cayenne pepper, and salt and pepper to taste. Bring the sauce back to a simmer and add the cherries. Cook over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring regularly, until the sauce thickens.
  • Remove the sauce from the heat, let cool slightly and puree in a food processor until smooth. Reserve.
  • Remove the chicken from the refrigerator 20 minutes prior to grilling and let it return to room temperature.
  • Preheat the grill to medium, 300-350 degrees.
  • Place the chicken on the grill and close the lid, grilling 15-20 minutes, turning chicken once after 10 minutes and basting intermittently with olive oil until the internal temperature reaches 150 degrees.
  • Turn grill to high and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes, liberally brushing on the cherry Bourbon BBQ sauce until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.
  • Remove the chicken from the grill and brush again with sauce.
  • Place under a tin foil tent for 3-5 minutes, allowing the chicken to reabsorb its juices.
  • Serve the chicken hot. Enjoy.