Shrimp on a stick

Shrimp on a stick

Wish I had a big steak for lunch today, followed up with a nap!

Wish I had a big steak for lunch today, followed up with a nap!

An attempt at Old Chicago style Pizza on the Big Green Egg.

Some appetizer fun on the grill at the Axmen’s 29th anniversary party.  Mini turkey dog pigs in a blanket.  Cooked outside on an XL Big green egg

Modified ABT’s

Took some jalapeños and sliced them in half.  Got rid of the seeds & white skin.  Mixed cream cheese with jack, cheddar, & lime juice.  Folded in some lump crab.  Wrapped in bacon, they were cooked improvised indirect with a few apple chips for an 90 min.  None were left as evidence- 

Can you guess what was smoking on the cedar plank below?

This was a fun one!  Some interesting-looking bell peppers ended up in the veggie drawer, and I was told their alien looks were reminiscent of heirloom tomatoes I have grown.  I have never made stuffed peppers before and was quite happy with the outcome.  In addition, I roasted of a couple of Anaheim peppers and sweated them to get the skins off.  On a play off of bacon wrapped jalapenos, I stuffed the Anaheims with various cheeses, spices, and a chorizo-like ground sausage.  A serious peeve of mine is when food is wrapped in bacon and the bacon is a soggy, undercooked mess.  When I noticed the doneness of my bacon left a lot to be desired, I got the idea to hit it with the blow torch, crisping it up.  It worked well, but is still a a method in progress.

Blackened Tuna with grilled broccoli, mango salsa, & steamed rice.

Cedar Plank Salmon

It was fun to experiment with some different seasonings on the Salmon.  Both pieces had shallots & cracked black pepper, but one was covered with additionally with sambal and brown sugar.  An Alaskan fishing guide told me years ago after his rookie season that red pepper flakes and apricot jam worked really well and this is my homage to him.  The other piece was with thin slices of lemon, fresh dill, & butter.  They went on the Big Green Egg at about 400 and I impatiently experimented with raising and lowering the temp to encourage browning during the 20 min cook time.  Next time, I will probably go a lot hotter and faster.

The asparagus was put on late in the cook but came out with a wonderful mix of char broil, and Al-dente that I was not expecting.  I almost always coat my asparagus with a bit of basic Italian dressing before grilling and I think it goes well on almost all veggies prior to hitting the heat.  

Pork “ham” from the pig butchering class I took a while back.  This thing was taking up quite a bit of space in my freezer and I wanted it out.  I brined it for 8 days in brown sugar, salt, water, allspice, fennel seed, coriander, star anise, and dried hot chili’s from last summers garden.  Although I was quite skeptical, it slow cooked on the egg for about 6 hours @ 175-225 with soaked cherry wood chips.  I did not season it at all and it was quite tasty although a bit fibrous as it was mostly muscle and connective tissue.  We dined on some of the more approachable bits last night and temporarily froze the rest in anticipation of some sort of a gumbo-beans-&-liar-rice-extravaganza in the near future.  Flavor was just short of sublime…  more to come…