Monday, March 31, 2008

Warning! Warning!

So what is this and has anybody seen my wife?

From what little I gather (because membership is by invitation only) it's a mostly "girls" club where the womens{sic} can let down their hair and post about topics they usually pretend they don't think about when they are in mixed company, and all under the guise of knitting and crocheting. I can't post pictures of what these "ladies" are knitting but, I can guarantee you you wont see much of it on Martha Stewart! It's kind of like a real, live Desperate Housewives for Stitchers and Bitchers.

It's like the roach motel of forums. My wife joined and I haven't seen her since. I have noticed that someone is taking the lunches and snacks I prepare for her every night but I haven't seen her. I might have to block it from my router if I ever hope to see her again.

Lonely in Delaware

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Kids! Whattsamatta with kids today?

My 13-year-old who has been enduring braces for the better part of two years had to have three "baby" teeth pulled so he can get his braces off this summer. His Orthodontist referred us to his regular dentist. His regular dentist, in turn, referred us to an Oral Surgeon. "so he can knock him out and take all three out at once and get it over with."

What does my son say? "I want to be awake so I can see it and hear it." Seriously, this kid is a freak! So the OS agrees to use a local instead of "knocking him out."

This morning was the big day. My son troops off without any apprehension or seemingly, a care in the world. Mrs. SpecialEd stays home from work so she can be with him during the procedure and get him settled in at home afterwards. Meanwhile, Dad is home wondering what's taking so long? Is he ok? Is there a problem? Poor baby, etc., etc.

So a little over an hour later they come home and around a mouth full of gauze is the biggest smile he's had in weeks! "It was so cool!" Look! And he holds out his hand with three freshly pulled teeth that you would swear just came out of a horse!

He did so well his OS has invited him back to observe a procedure and says "he'll make a great oral surgeon someday!"

Now with all my experience in and out of hospitals, I tend to be very stoic when it comes to being poked and prodded and when the tech takes four attempts to get an I.V. started but actually enjoying it? All I can say is he didn't get it from me.

Warning! Not for the Squeamish!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Lamb

Not much excitement this past week. I did however, grill a big, honking (8lb) leg-o-lamb for my mother, for Easter. I've been using the same marinade recipe for going on 25 years now and see no reason to change.

  1. ¾ cup Soy

  2. ¾ cup lemon juice

  3. 1 ½ cup onion bullion

  4. 3 Tbls. Horseradish

  5. 3 Tbls prepared mustard

  6. pepper to taste

In all those years I have never seen onion bullion at any store, so I have always used powdered onion soup mix and it has tasted just fine. The longer the lamb marinates the better it tastes. Even better is to butterfly the leg and grill it like a big steak. Butterflying provides much more surface area for absorbing the marinade.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Lexington Outdoors of Maine

I first found this site linked on The Naked Whiz’s Ceramic Charcoal Cooker site. Of course I was instantly intrigued. They had me at “Hello,” hook, line and woodsaw.

“Artisan” wood chips, chunks, etc., are nothing new but I have yet to use planks, or in Lexington Outdoors’ case, ovals for cooking fish, or anything else for that matter. I have been hoping to grill more fish this year as I have been hoping to eat more fish this year. We eat absolutely NO fish in this house with the exception of occasional dinners of frozen fish sticks and tater tots. When the boys were younger, we/they had this meal two or more times a week.

I resolved that we would start eating more fish and proper fish, not “stix and tots!” I recently purchased a box of Mrs. Paul’s breaded fish fillets as a kind of warmup for the boys so as not to shock their systems. They went over ok, but only after SpEd Boy #2 was granted permission to use ketchup. He was much happier once the dreaded fish fillet was “swimming” again.

Anyway the point of this post isn’t to say how wonderful cooking with wood chips, chunks and planks from Lexington Outdoors is (I haven’t cooked anything yet) but rather to say what a wonderful company LO is! When I received my order (within a couple days of ordering) one of the items I ordered was left out of the package. I called their CS number and after several rings, I got a message saying they were busy, so please leave a message. Uh-oh, that’s not a good sign!

BUT, about 20 minutes later, I received a call-back from CSR, Dorie, who as it turns out, is a family member/owner of the company. She was very pleasant and most helpful, not only with the missing item but we discussed the various woods, recipes, regional accents, the state of Maine and even marriage! (Sadly, she is spoken for). For my troubles, Dorie sent me an extra sampler pack of oval planks and directed me back to the website for more recipes. The second shipment came two days later via Fed-Ex. Thank you Dorie!

In contrast, my wife and I purchased a new washer/dryer unit two weeks ago from Sears and had many problems with the installation. I was on the phone everyday for a week, until it was settled. Most calls landed me in India where it took awhile to get re-directed back to the States and the correct department or representative to handle the problem.

Dorie went above and beyond, gave me more time than I probably deserved, to replace one missing item, and has secured a customer for life. Even if I don’t cook with their wood, I can use the wood chips, chunks and planks to balance a wobbly table or as chocks for the wheels on my chair!

I’ll post my cooking results soon.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Just say no!

I'm flattered, I take it as a compliment (it is a compliment, right?). But... Just say no! No more sauces, no more rubs, no more spices, I don't have any more room in the house and I now have more BBQ rubs and sauces then I can use for at least a year and probably many more!

So thank you, I appreciate it, I can always use bags of lump, I can always use aluminum pans, I can always use firestarters (I like the little Weber gel tab thingys), I will still keep cooking for you but, JUST SAY NO!

IF you have lots of money and just must buy me something for the grill/kitchen, I'm starting to get an itch for some Lodge "Logic" cast-iron cookware. (whatever you do, don't tell Mrs. SpecialEd)

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Key Lime Pie Recipe

Due to what can only be described as overwhelming response to my previous post...

(2 comments, Woohoo!)

I figured I better post the recipe I use for KLP. This recipe is an old one from a book first published in 1949. This book, With A Jug of Wine, by Morrison Wood, has provided me with authentic versions of most of my staples; Boeuf Bourguignon, Jambalaya, Hungarian Goulash, Chili, Brunswick Stew, Kentucky Burgoo, Bigos (Polish Hunter's Stew), etc. (Can you tell I'm a sucker for the one-pot, so-called peasant foods?)

I got the book on a whim waaay back in the early 80's when everyone was wearing tight, overpriced, Designer jeans, the girls had "Big" hair and the guys had perms and skinny little ties... needless to say it has remained in fashion longer than the above, (we can only thank the Gods for that!)

Key Lime Pie

1 can sweetened condensed milk
½ cup fresh lime juice (bottled is ok, Key Lime is best)
3 eggs
Prebaked pie shell
Whipped cream

Separate the eggs and beat both whites and yolks in their separate containers.

Mix together 1 can of sweetened condensed milk, ½ cup of lime juice and the beaten yolks. Then fold in the well-beaten whites.

Pour the mixture in a good flaky pie shell, already baked, and bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

When cool, place in the refrigerator until ready to serve. When serving, top pie with whipped cream.

One variation is to mix a tbsp. of rum in with the whipped cream and sprinkle with powdered cinnamon.

* This is the only recipe I know of for KLP that includes the egg whites. Not being one to waste and since the egg whites are almost pure protein (that makes the pie healthy right?), I have always included them. It makes for a "lighter" pie.

Monday, March 3, 2008

KLP, My "Ace in the hole!"

I was grilling again this weekend... of course! And it was also another round of Birthday cooks for my sisters as SpecialEd Sisters #2 and #6 had birthdays last week. Nothing out of the ordinary, just some pork; a loin and a couple tenderloins. I wasn't completely sure of the weather so Saturday night I hedged my bet by making my "emergency backup" dish(s). KLP! That's Key Lime Pie, two of them to be exact. No matter how the pork turned out, with these two particular SpEd Sisters, I knew that pie was my Ace in the hole. Why Key Lime Pie?

  • It only takes about 20 minutes to make, including 15 minutes of cooking time.
  • It's virtually foolproof
  • It is awesome stuff!

Once again, I didn't get any but according to the latest SpEd Sister polls (rave reviews) the pies weren't necessary but definitely a nice touch.

Happy Birthday Again! You know who you are...