It's Memorial Day weekend, yo! But the weather isn't cooperating for the kick-off to summer grill season. Pork Spareribs were on sale this week, and I just went for it today.

Without your own smoker, this recipe works well for creating a smoker-environment on your charcoal grill.
You can get the recipe HERE

It was a gloomy day in LA today, but nonetheless, we barbecued on & this corn is straight off the cob. If you're not microwaving your corn cobs to beat the heat, you definitely should. I take about 1 layer off the husk, rinse them in water, and cover them with a wet paper towel. 2 min (for one ear) and they are perfect! 


Maryland Style Shrimp

Once again stealing from my cousin, a Baltimore-area native. I'm in agreement that Old Bay is the greatest seafood spice on the planet! I adapted it to a smaller portion size, since my husband wouldn't dare eat shellfish. I also left out the onion so I could share it with my son, but for myself, I'd add that back in.

1 # shrimp (raw, tail & shell on)
3 T Old Bay
1/2 bottle of beer
1/4 c water
1/2 onion (cut in two)

In a large pot with a steamer insert tightly fitted, add beer and roughly 1/2 cup water. You want to be sure that when boiling, the liquid will not reach the bottom of the steamer so this will depend on the size of your pot.

Bring to a boil, dumping liquid if it reaches steamer.

Add shrimp and chopped onion to the steamer basket.

Cover with Old Bay (or more if you like it spicy)

Steam for roughly 5 minutes, or until the shrimp is completely pink and cooked through.


One from the cuz

Trying something posted by my cousin on her BLOG ~ Beauty From Burnt Toast

I've had a bag of orecchiette in my pantry for a month, and today I decided to use it up and give this a go: 

Orecchiette with Sausage and Garlicky Greens 


Chicken Cutlets Italiano

Saw this on FB and decided to try "Nonna's Chicken Cutlets".  I trust any Italian grandmother who doesn't use recipes!  This is the recipe her son wrote from her verbal directions:
4-8 chicken cutlets, breast butterflied and pounded out
1 quart salt water brine (a basic brine is 4 cups water for 1 cup of salt)
3 eggs
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 teaspoon roughly chopped parsley
salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3 cups breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 lemons
4 ounces extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon roughly chopped parsley
3 cloves garlic, minced
salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon Sicilian oregano
1. Brine chicken cutlets in salt water for one hour. Remove and pat with towel until dry.
2. In a medium bowl, crack and beat the eggs. Add 1 tablespoon of the Parmesan to eggs.
3. In a separate bowl, add parsley, salt, pepper, and flour to breadcrumbs. Dip each chicken cutlet in the egg mixture, let excess egg wash drip off, then dredge in the breadcrumb mixture. Flip each piece until cutlet is fully covered in breadcrumbs.
4. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place chicken cutlets into well-oiled baking pan. Drizzle with remaining olive oil and bake until golden brown.
5. For the lemon dressing, juice the lemons, discarding all excess pulp and seeds. Add salt, pepper, parsley, olive oil, and oregano. Once the chicken is cooked, remove from oven and place on covered table or counter top. Bathe hot chicken cutlets in lemon dressing.
** Since she didn't specify other than to say, "if the bottom is done, you turn it over"... I baked it about 10 minutes per side.  I served it with basic pasta with Marinara on the side.


Hot Tamales at Year 23

It's my first ever attempt at tamales from scratch. I made green chile chicken this time and used the crockpot, because I didn't want to make a big steamer pot and I had no help.  Perhaps the kid will help next year. He certainly is good at the eating part. Making the filling ahead, and then making the masa dough in the stand mixer was much easier than I thought.



Thanksgiving 2018


It's become tradition to spend Thanksgiving with the inlaws out in Hemet. Which is fine, except that it's going to be like 100 degrees tomorrow, which is a record-breaker (hottest since 1903). Yuck. I'm already sweaty and uncomfortable.

On the bright side, maybe that will make me want to eat less since I'll be sweating my ass off. Save on the carbs somehow.

As a result of this holiday traditional Thursday, I always make a Thanksgiving meal at home on Wednesday because, let's face it, we're all just in it for the leftovers right?

I have tried many methods of turkey prep: dry brine, wet brine, oven bag, high temp/low temp, lift skin and butter, spice bouquet in cavity, stuffed, unstuffed, breast side down & flip, etc.  I am not a fan of the frying situation as the fire danger and skin burn eventuality give me severe anxiety. This year, though, I thought I'd try something I've never done before.  Err I say this, if you have a mayo aversion, leave my blog immediately-- especially if you're one of those sadistic Miracle Whip peeps. 

That's correct, I lathered that baby good in some good' ol Hellman's mayonaisse.  (** listen West Coasters, I'm fully aware it's called Best Foods out here, but y'all got a realize I'm an East Coast girl at heart and I can not get over it being the same damn bottle with some generic food processor's brand. I like to fool myself into believing is was some German grannie that made this personally for me.**) 

Once lathered all over and inside the skin of the breast, I sprinkled it with this dry rub:

Then I cooked it at 325 degrees, approx 15 minutes per pound.

I did not baste it at all, just let is go in the oven and glanced at it with the light, but didn't open the oven. The meat was moist, and the skin was phenomenal!

Sadly, I forgot to take a photo of the bird because it was 3000 degrees in my kitchen by the time I was done and I was too sweaty to remember anything.  But it was a nice pre-holiday lunch with a side of pie. 

Happy Thanksgiving!