Whoo Boy! We got some rain last night, the thunder seemed constant all night long. Bitsy just crawled out from underneath the sofa a few minutes ago.Here’s Gabe and Homer Kitteh messing about by the pond a couple of days ago. It’s been down a little all winter long, several inches below the overflow pipe. I haven’t looked this morning yet but it has to be up close, now.I’ve found that using a can of refried beans in my chili recipe really adds some body to it. I used refried black beans in this but the regular refries from pinto beans should work fine.I’ve been making gravy from the chicken fat captured when I roast a chicken beer-butt style:I pour off the fat (and the water I’ve added to the pan) and refrigerate it to make separating the fat easy. Make a roux of the fat and flour then add stock to make gravy. You can also add milk to make it creamy but I don’t except when making it for a pot pie. We eat half the chicken the first go, then bone the rest for later. The carcass goes into the pressure cooker to make a stock, takes an hour at pressure rather than all day on the stove-top.Kittehs! There are a couple of brand new momma cats at the shelter, they were brought in pregnant. The shelter will eventually spay her but the kittehs have to be weaned first. Mrs J says 6 to 8 weeks is normal.Rib steaks! Sous vide is the killer app for steaks. These spend the afternoon at 138 degrees in their vacuum sealed bags. Kroger sells whole slabs of these, I slice and bag them with salt and pepper and then freeze. They go right into the hot bath frozen.Another batch of cuties! Mrs J says they had to open the overflow kitten room because they have too many right now for the dedicated kitteh nursery.
A little breakfast pr0n to start. The patty is from that batch of homemade garlic pepper recipe sausage.This is an older picture from a meal we had a couple of weeks ago. Not sure if I have used it so here it is. I bought a batch of purple potatoes and mixed them in with fingerlings and a cubed sweet potato. The pork tenderloin was done sous vide and then seared in a hot pan just before plating. There is a pan sauce made from red wine and the pan juices. I reached for the white but it wasn’t open so the red went in.Gumbo! This one has andouille, chicken, and shrimp.A couple of pineapple upside down cakes. There was a little pineapple left over from Mrs J’s carrot cake, and we finally used up the last of the maraschino cherries that have been lurking in a dark corner of the fridge for ages. Not the prettiest cakes ever but they tasted great. There is one small slice left but it will not last out the day.Here’s Ollie! He’s been mixing about with the other kittehs and we think he’s fitting in quite well. He and Bitsy spent the night chasing up and down the hallway.I dug one of the rib roasts out of the freezer. It was one of those the market had on sale for the holidays. It was oddly cut, the two end ribs were sliced down the middle, making the piece about 1-1/2 inches altogether. I promised Mrs J that I would turn out the next steak medium done and so set the water bath temp to 140. When it came out I sliced it in half and seared the pieces in a hot pan. The pan sauce was made of butter and the same red wine that I used on that pork tenderloin. The potatoes were rubbed with olive oil and generously salted, then baked in a 350 oven for an hour.Mrs J left for an appointment this morning. Gabe waited by the door for her return. He misses his dog mama every time she goes away.That garlic pepper sausage makes pretty good chili.I’ll close with this salad. It’s a bagged salad topped with a deli made Greek salad with a little extra feta.
That cauliflower soup was really bland. Even Mrs J said it was too bland. Bland even with sour cream and cheese. I fix! I fix by dumping half the remaining soup and adding 2 potatoes boiled in chicken stock. These I blended in thoroughly with a stick blender. Then I added crisp bacon crumbles. This one didn’t need sour cream but I did go with the Creole seasoning again because I like that stuff.
I say it’s an old picnic table because it is old, for a picnic table. I made that thing in a flurry of busy about 30 years ago and it’s been sitting out in the weather since then. I’m kind of amazed that it has held up as well as it has. I did replace one of the seat boards when we moved it a bit closer to the house a few weeks ago.
I’ve been playing with that Prisma app on my Android phone, it isn’t much good on close-ups of food on a plate but when there are a couple of well defined objects in a photo it does some interesting things:There is a crop function built into the app, but the different filters do all of the heavy lifting. There is a fair selection of them, I like some better than others but that’s a subjective thing. YMMVI like the mosaic filter a lot.This one, meh. I don’t know why it’s picking up red in the nose on Gabe.I like this one pretty well.
We had enough chicken and sauce left over from those sour cream enchiladas for another go. The side dish is a black bean and corn salad with onions, peppers, and diced celery in a cumin vinaigrette.Here’s that chihuahua mix before she got after the chicken in that bag before her. Cute as a button!Roast/BBQ chicken quarter with rosemary garlic potato wedges and an ear of grilled corn. The local Kroger has been offering seasoned leg quarters off and on for a while now and pricing them decently. I generally buy some to cook right away and extra to freeze for later.This is Spots, we’ve put up her picture here before – she’s about 2 years old and is a sweetheart. Mrs J reminds me that St Francis has lowered their adoption fees during “Happy Cat Month” to $25 and that includes vaccinations, chipping, and spaying/neutering. They also test for FeLV/FIV.That new toaster oven has slo-cook settings that work pretty much like on a dedicated crock-pot style cooker. I have it set on low, it is showing the default time setting of 6 hours. I had a brisket in the smoker overnight and I’m finishing it here. It’s wrapped in foil inside the pan.Moar Gabe! Here he is, studiously ignoring Bea Kitteh. We’ve since ripped out everything in the garden except for the figs. Still waiting for them to ripen. Here’s Bea again, luxuriating in catnip that Mrs J was cleaning up in the front from under the little dogwood tree.I’ll wind this up with this sammich. It has deli sliced ham, roast chicken, and cheddar under all that salad. That green salad in the back is one of Kroger’s frequent forays into artisinal salads, this one is predominately kale and was pretty bad. Baby spinach maybe would work but the kale really needed cooking.
I’ve always called these things pink ladies but I assume there are other names for them depending on where you live. They usually come as a surprise, seemingly showing up overnight.This sloppy joe sammich got a bit of crunch added with the corn chips, it’s akin to Frito pie in that regard. I like the way the slaw turned out so much I ordered a salad spinner for the method the recipe spells out. It calls for a salt and sugar “cure” that has to be rinsed off before the dressing is added and the excess water needs to be removed. I’ve been letting it drain onto tea towels.More BELT sammiches. I’m frugal so I toasted the heel ends to make this one. The tomato bushes continue to yield the big slicers that are perfect for them.Speaking of tomatoes, we juiced a couple of five gallon buckets full of tomatoes and spent the day boiling them down to eventually can 7 quarts of tomato soup. That vegetable juicer we bought is still paying dividends.Gabe has found a new toy that is so much better than the other toys in that box. Mrs J is so much fun! She plays with him all over the house!Usually these play sessions result in nap time, whether Gabe is sleepy or not.Moar kittehs! I don’t have any additional info on either of these.More smoked pork with some of that slaw from the recipe I linked to above.I’ll wrap this up with another kitteh.