Category Archives: JeffreyW

Tidbits

It’s been a week or so since the cicadas emerged from their 17 year dirt nap and they are making up for lost time.DSC_0437 (1600x1060)I tried a box mix onion ring batter for these and didn’t much like the result although I did manage to choke a few down.  The sammich is a turkey salad made with a generous amount of crumbled crispy bacon with celery and sweet relish.  Much better than the rings.DSC_0429 (1600x1060)I posted a photo of this chicken while still on the grill the other day.  Here it is plated with the baked beans and a few cold sides.DSC02319 (1600x1060)Post needz moar kitteh!  I don’t know anything about this one other than it will be available for adoption soon.DSC_5324 (1600x1060)I don’t have many pictures of Toby that don’t have him giving me a suspicious glare.  Look up scaredy-cat in the dictionary and there he is.DSC_0443 (1600x1060)I don’t make compound butters very often but I really should pick up my game.  This one is a dill butter with a drop of lemon juice and a dash of cayenne and it went really well with this lemon butter fish filet.

Mmm… Blackberry Pie

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A Good Day for a Cookout

DSC_5339 (1600x1060)Thighs are the best part of a chicken.  These are bone in and they still have their skins and are perfect for a bbq.  Cast iron works great on a grill, these beans will have a smokey flavor because of that chunk of hickory I have in the smokebox over one of the burners.DSC_5452 (1600x1060)Bonus Butterfly!  I just like the look of this one.  That’s a Yellow Swallowtail on purple cone flowers.

Turkey Pot Pie Pr0n

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Tidbits

DSC_0414 (1600x1060)Nachos!  Sometimes I have a little ground beef left over, not enough for burgers, but plenty for something like this.  I make my own seasoning for taco style meat.DSC_0411 (1600x1060)Mrs J thought Boston cream pie would be nice.  It ended up tasting much better than it looked before the hot  ganache covered covered a few errors.  This is as close a look as I dare to show.  Why is it not called Boston cream cake?  Mystery!DSC02390 (1600x1060)Puppies! Momma dog came to the shelter pregnant and dropped this healthy litter of six.DSC02385 (1600x1060)This pup is named Spicy, and is one of several that were removed from a hoarder.  She seems to be OK but some of her sibs are still shy.DSC_0398 (1600x1060)Hard to beat bbq’d chicken and grilled corn on the cob.DSC_0416 (1600x1060)Not as classic a combo as with grilled cheese but the tuna salad sammy went quite well with the tomato soup.

Suddenly, Cicadas!

DSC_5319 (1600x1060)Cicadas!  One of a myriad that appeared overnight.  They are kind of pretty, fresh out of their old skins.  This one is perched upon a coralbell Mrs J planted last fall after nurturing it all last summer in a container.  Not really looking forward to their singing 24/7, talk about the sounds of summer…DSC_5317 (1600x1060)Once we noticed and started looking we found the empties all over.  These things emerge on a cycle, I’m not sure if these are the 13 year or the 17 year models.DSC_5316 (1600x1060)

Sammich Pr0n – Italian Beef

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Bread Pr0n – Soft Hoagie Rolls

DSC_0389 (1600x1060)I have some Italian beef working for lunch and need proper rolls to put together sandwiches.  These are from that King Arthur bun recipe and I have high hopes for them in this role.  The recipe is for eight buns, I divided it into six parts and the rolls are pretty big.  These are fresh from the oven and just brushed with the melted butter and they smell wonderful!

Friday Recipe Exchange: Cast Iron and Baked Beans

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JeffreyW posted his photo of cast iron baked beans a while back and all I could think was, “great idea, why haven’t I tried that?” I debated between posting about cast iron recipes or baked beans. With Memorial Day coming up fast, it seemed like a good time to bring back a bunch of baked bean recipes.

There was no real cooking in my kitchen this week, I’m uninspired while I house hunt. Luckily, I keep a lot of frozen meals, marinated meats and sauces in my freezer. I double batch much of what I cook and freeze for later. Boil up some fresh pasta or rice and I’ve got a quick meal. But I did get to a Bixby update for the pet lovers, he’s relaxin’ and chillin’ for your amusement here.

On to the recipes:

I like linking to JeffreyW’s recipes (rather than embedding them in the post) because he writes a narrative of the process instead of simply listing the recipe and often includes a batch of photos to illustrate. His Cast Iron Baked Beans recipe (click here) is no exception. It would silly to abridge it here.

I had these baked beans at a cookout and absolutely needed the recipe. Turns out it is just a few ingredients that spices up a simple can of baked beans and adds a touch of sweet, too.  Nita’s Baked Beans, recipe here.

If baked beans aren’t your thing, how about Butter Beans and Greens (recipe here), since in many backyard gardens, the collards, mustard greens and spinach should be ready for spring harvest.

What’s on your plate this weekend? Do you have a dish that everyone asks for the recipe when you take it to gatherings? And do you give it out? Have any dishes you had to have the recipe after tasting it at a cookout or potluck?

The featured recipe tonight is savory, sweet. smoky and oven baked. Who knew molasses could be so good?

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Baked Beans Photo by JeffreyW

And if you want a true New England experience, add some Brown Bread, recipe here. Brown bread was a childhood treat that I didn’t realized until later was unique to New England (at least at that time). My mom would fry it up in a skillet, served with lots of butter, maple syrup and baked beans.

Boston Baked Beans

This serves 8, but you can easily double it for large gatherings. The slow cooking, white beans and molasses are what give these baked beans their signature flavor.

  • 1 pound (2 cups) dried white beans (Great Northern or navy beans)
  • 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/2 cup ketchup (or 2 tbsp tomato paste)
  • 1 tbsp dry mustard
  • 1/4 pound thick sliced bacon, cut into pieces
  • 4 cups water, or more if necessary
  • 1/4 tsp salt (more may be needed, but start here)
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

large dutch oven, bean pot or heavy duty oven proof pot

Soak the beans overnight, drain, and rinse them. (Here at high altitude, soaking doesn’t do much, so I pressure cook them for 20 minutes instead, then let them soak for an hour)

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Drain and rinse the beans.

Put the beans in a large, ovenproof pot.. Add the onions, brown sugar, molasses, tomato paste, mustard, and bacon. Add water, salt, and pepper. Return the beans to a boil. Cover the pan and transfer to the oven.

Cook the beans for 4 hours, checking them every hour to see if the pan seems dry. Add more water as needed, ½ cup at a time.

Add more salt and pepper, if you like, and let the beans sit for 15 minutes before serving.

Note: To reheat leftovers, add more water and cook over low heat, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until hot.

Missing the full dinner menus and shopping lists? If you click here, it will take you to all the ones I have posted. That’s it for this week. Have a great weekend. – TaMara

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Tidbits

DSC_5285 (1600x1060)More random wildlife!  A snapper makes his/her way across the lawn.  It’s dry so I know it’s been on the road for a while, but there is a pond in sight from where the picture was taken.DSC02312 (1600x1200)We don’t know much about this orange kitteh, it was found in a cardboard box with a sibling.  They are about 8 weeks old and are ready for adoption.DSC02310 (1600x1200)The first one looks a lot like our newest kitty, this one lacks the white patches.  I’m sure there is a name for the different color schemes but I don’t know what they are.  Mrs J says she just calls them orange tabbies.DSC_0378 (1600x1060)Tacos!  These are roast pork with minimal garnish – a smear of beans and a spoonful of salsa with sprinkles of green onion and cheddar.  The general term for the main filling is carnitas, which means “little meats”.DSC_0374 (1600x1060)The coconut curry chicken we had over rice the other day was also good on these garlic mashed potatoes.  I wish I was better at cooking for two, we still have another little bit of this leftover.DSC_5307 (1600x1060)It’s so hard to catch these hummers in mid flight, especially with the long lens I had on my camera.  This was snapped as he approached a feeder and hesitated while he chose a spot to land.DSC_0364 (1600x1060)I’ll wrap up with a classic picnic plate of burger, beans, slaw, and potato salad.

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