Steak. Chicken. Coffee. Chocolate.

These are foods that just about everyone would welcome to the table. But with a little help from ingredients from members of the Made In Oklahoma Coalition, these familiar favorites can get an extra boost of flavor and texture, making them into something truly special.

Rib-eye is considered the most flavorful of steaks; serve it over a bed of arugula and roasted peppers dressed with balsamic vinegar and Parmesan cheese, and this meaty main course takes on a new dimension.

Chicken and waffles is a dish that can trace its history back for centuries, but this modern version pairs chicken tenders with homemade buttermilk waffles seasoned with chives and cheddar cheese for a uniquely sweet and savory treat.

For dessert, make a batch of buttery scones to be topped with a chocolate “gravy,” served with an iced coffee frappé.

For information on where to find MIO Coalition ingredients, visit

Salt and Pepper Rib-eyes over Arugula

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing

2 1-inch-thick rib-eye steaks (about 1 pound each)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 cups arugula, washed and spun dry

1½ cups roasted peppers, rinsed and patted dry

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Small block Parmesan cheese (about 8 ounces)

1. In a large saute pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season steaks with salt and pepper. When oil starts to smoke, carefully add steaks. Allow the steaks to cook for about 3 to 4 minutes on one side, without moving, to create a good, crusty sear. When steaks are brown, flip and sear the other side for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove meat to a large plate and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

2. To serve, line a large platter with arugula. Tear the roasted peppers into large pieces and scatter over the arugula. In a small bowl, whisk in the remaining olive oil, balsamic vinegar and any meat juices that may have collected on the plate from the steaks. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Slice the steaks across the grain and on a bias into 1½-inch-thick pieces. Lay the slices on top of the salad and drizzle with dressing. Using a vegetable peeler, shave Parmesan over the dish.

Chicken and Waffles

1 package Fast Fixin’ Chicken Fried Chicken Breasts or Chicken Breast Tenderloins

1 cup Shawnee Mills yellow cornmeal

1 cup Shawnee Mills

all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

2 cups Braum’s buttermilk, well shaken

2 eggs

4 tablespoons Braum’s

butter, melted

¼ cup Griffin’s Organic Pancake Syrup

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

½ bunch Scissortail Farms chives, sliced thinly

Optional garnishes:

Griffin’s Organic Pancake Syrup

½ bunch Scissortail Farms chives, minced

Shredded cheddar cheese

1. Cook chicken according to package directions.

2. In a large bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk together and set aside.

3. In a smaller bowl, add buttermilk, eggs, butter and pancake syrup. Whisk thoroughly to combine. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just mixed. Stir in the cheddar cheese and chives.

4. To make the waffles, preheat the waffle iron. Lightly coat with vegetable spray if necessary. Scoop batter onto the center of the waffle iron. Close the lid and bake until browned and crisp, about 5-7 minutes. Place waffles on a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven while you continue cooking the rest of the batter.

5. To serve, stack 2-3 waffles on a plate, topped by 2-3 strips of chicken, pancake syrup, chives and cheddar cheese.

Scones and Chocolate Gravy

2½ cups Shawnee Mills

all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

8 tablespoons Hiland cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

⅓ cup granulated sugar

⅔ cup Hiland whole milk

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking powder and salt. Add butter, using a pastry cutter or two forks. (You can also do this with a few quick pulses in a food processor.) The mixture should look like fine crumbs.

2. Add sugar and gently mix. Add milk, stirring until dough forms. If the dough is too crumbly, add a teaspoon of milk at a time to correct.

3. Place dough on a floured board, kneading gently until it comes together. Pat into a round about 1½ inches thick. Cut into 6 wedges.

4. Place scones on a cookie sheet. Bake 12 minutes or until light golden brown.

For chocolate gravy:

¾ cup sugar

3 tablespoons Shawnee Mills all-purpose flour

¼ cup cocoa powder

2 cups Hiland whole milk

4 tablespoons Hiland

unsalted butter

1. In a medium saucepan, whisk the sugar, flour and cocoa powder. Whisk in milk until combined.

2. Heat on medium heat, cooking and whisking until the mixture begins to boil. Let mixture thicken, which will take 5 to 10 minutes.

3. Remove saucepan from heat. Stir in butter, stirring until melted. Spoon warm gravy over scones.

Chocolate Fudge Swirled Iced Coffee

1 cup strong-brewed Compadres coffee, room temperature

¼ cup Braum’s Hot Fudge Sauce

1 teaspoon Griffin’s vanilla

1 cup Braum’s whole milk

Braum’s whipped cream

Bedre chocolate bar, shaved or curled for garnish

1. Add coffee, hot fudge sauce, vanilla and milk to a blender, mixing until combined. Pour over crushed ice. Top with whipped cream and chocolate shavings or curls.

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James D. Watts Jr.


Twitter: watzworld

Scene Writer

James writes primarily about the visual, performing and literary arts. Phone: 918-581-8478