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VaKA Burgers Schedule for this week!! ———July 1st thru July 5th———— **Tuesday: Mariachi Plaza (Boyle Heights) 5:00pm-11pm **Wednesday: Tested L.A (3329 Division St., 90065) 5:00pm 12am **Thursday: Tested L.A(3329 Division St, 90065) 5:00pm-12am **Friday: CLOSED **Saturday: Street Food Cinema: Exposition Park (700 Exposition Park Dr) 5:30pm-10:30pm #streetfoodcinema #vakaburgerfoodtruck #vakaburgers #VaKAburger #vakaburger #laweekly #lafoodfest #bestogstreetfood2014 #chefaaronj #ApronSquad #apronsquadforlife #laweekly #latimes #lafoodies #Streetfoodtrucks #eaglerock #testedla #boyleheights#losangelesmagazine #beendoingthis

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Housemade Pretzel Bites

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1 cup warm water (100° to 110°F)
1 (1/4-ounce) envelope active dry yeast
3 cups bread flour or all-purpose flour plus more for work surface
1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, well softened
Grapeseed oil for bowl

Baking Pretzels:
8 cups water
1/2 cup baking soda
Pretzel salt or coarse kosher salt

Make Pretzel Dough:
Stir together warm water and yeast in a large bowl and let stand until a creamy beige foam develops on the surface, about 10 minutes. (If mixture doesn’t foam, start over with new yeast.)

Meanwhile, in a smaller bowl, stir together flour, salt, and light brown sugar.

Add flour mixture and butter to yeast mixture, and stir together first with a wooden spoon and then with your hands, until it forms a dough. On a lightly floured surface, knead dough until it is smooth and elastic, 8 to 10 minutes, dusting with more flour as needed if dough sticks to work surface.

Transfer dough to a lightly oiled large bowl and turn over to coat with oil. Cover with a kitchen towel (not terry cloth) and let rise in a draft-free place at room temperature until doubled, 2 to 3 hours.

Punch down dough and divide into quarters. Form each quarter into 4 balls. Roll each ball into a 12-inch-long rope. Cut each rope into six (2-inch) pieces

Bake Pretzels:
Heat oven to 450°F with racks in upper and lower third. Well oil 2 large baking sheets (about 17- by 12- inches).

In a 4- to 5-quart saucepan, bring water and baking soda to a boil (mixture will be foamy at first, but foam will dissipate). Add 12 pretzel bites and cook 30 seconds (they will rise to the surface almost immediately), then transfer with a slotted spoon to baking sheets. Quickly sprinkle pretzel bites lightly on both sides with pretzel salt before they dry (so salt sticks). Repeat with remaining pretzel bites, returning water to a boil between batches.

Bake pretzel bites in oven, switching sheets between racks and rotating sheets halfway through baking, until deep chestnut brown, 8 to 10 minutes (watch closely toward end of baking; bites brown quickly in last few minutes). Immediately transfer pretzel bites to wire racks to cool.
Serves with a homemade cheese sauce
“That’s the Next Recipe” Stay tuned!

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EASY PICKLES

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Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 2 minutes
Chill: 1 hour

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1 cup cider vinegar

1/2 cup water, plus more, if needed

2 teaspoons each: kosher salt, pickling spice

2 Persian Cucumbers, cut into 1/4-inch slices

1 Combine cider vinegar with 1/2-cup of water, salt and pickling spice in a small saucepan. Heat to a boil.

2 Place cucumber in a clean, dry glass container just large enough to hold all the slices. Pour boiling brine over cucumber slices to cover completely. If all cucumbers are not submerged, add cold water to cover. Cover; refrigerate at least 1 hour. Pickles will keep for about 10 days.

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Wild Mushroom Risotto

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1/3 cup peanut oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 cups arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
7 Cups vegetable stock or chicken stock, kept simmering
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 pound wild mushrooms (such as shiitake, cremini, oyster or portabello), stems reserved for stock
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a medium-size heavy saucepan, heat the peanut oil. Over medium-high heat, sauté the onion and garlic just to soften, stirring constantly, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the rice and continue to stir, using a wooden spoon, coating the rice with the oil and onion.

Deglaze with the white wine and cook until the liquid is absorbed, stirring often. Pour in enough hot vegetable or chicken stock to cover, about 3 cups, and cook, stirring often, until the liquid is absorbed.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat the olive oil. If the mushrooms are large, cut them into bite-size pieces and sauté over medium-high heat just to soften, 3 to 4 minutes.

Pour 3 cups of hot vegetable or chicken stock into the rice, turn the flame to high as possible and keep stirring until al dente . Stir in the mushrooms and the remaining 1 cup stock, as necessary.
Remember, the risotto should be creamy, not runny. Remove from the flame and vigorously beat in the chilled butter and the Parmesan cheese until completely dissolved. Stir in the parsley, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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House Cured Pork Belly (BACON)

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7 to 9-lb whole, skinless pork belly, divided into 2 or 3 equal pieces*
2 ½ pounds kosher salt
2 ½ pounds brown sugar
1 ¼ Tbsp ground black pepper
2 Tbsp curing salt, to help preserve the bacon,

1. In a large bowl, combine the salt, sugar, spices

2. Place the pork belly on a large baking sheet or high-sided pan. Liberally rub each piece of pork belly with the curing mixture. Place each piece of rubbed pork belly into its own zip-top bag, squeezing out the air, and sealing tight. Discard the remaining curing mixture.

3. Place the bags in the refrigerator and allow the pork to sit for 2 days. After 2 days, open the bags and pour out the liquid. Squeeze out the air, reseal each bag, flip the bags so the other side of the belly is now on the bottom, and then return the bags to the refrigerator for 2 more days.

4. Remove the bellies from the bags, rinse off the cure, and pat dry.
Slice into desired cuts.

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Pasta Carbonara With Shaved Truffle Carbonara

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Pasta With White Truffle Carbonara

A different twist to a basic plate of pasta topped with shaved truffles.

Ingredients:
1 Garlic Clove, Finely Chopped
1 Tablespoon Butter
1/4 Cup White Wine
1/3 Cup Heavy Cream
1 Large Egg
1 Egg Yolk
1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Grated
Salt & Pepper
3 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped
1 Pound Fresh Pasta (Fettuccine or Linguine)

Topping:
Black or White Truffles
or Black or White Truffle Paste or Butter

Directions:
Cook the garlic over medium heat in the butter until it is light golden brown.
Add wine to skillet and cook until it has almost evaporated, then remove from the heat and add the cream.
Cook the pasta until it is al dente.
Whisk together the eggs, parsley and cheese.
Pour the cream mixture over cooked pasta and mix thoroughly.
Add the egg mixture salt and pepper to taste, mixing well.
Serve, topping with shaved truffles.

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