The lord gaveth so the dinner club tooketh!

Whew! Another weekend has come and gone much too fast as is the normal routine. This weekend was a rather productive one for me which always makes me happy but just adds to the speed in which the weekends intended purpose to “slow down and relax” eludes me.

As I have chronicled in this blog at numerous times, there is a group of my friends and I that get together from time to time to host a dinner club of sorts. Nothing fancy. One of us will host a dinner in rather then going out to eat. We have a bunch of decent cooks among us each with some unique flair. This weekend the dinner club had a modified meet up. I’ll explain.

Snapper Trigerfish


Lobster season in Florida is coming up in August. A few of my friends and I over the last couple of weekends have lets just say, been preparing by scouting out prime locations in the waters lets just say around Florida. While doing our “homework” yesterday we also did a little fishing.

Before we knew it we had a cooler full of edible fish. Mutton Snapper, YellowTail Snapper, Triggerfish, and there may or may not have been some other fish which I can not recall the exact name but I think it rhymed with stupor or hooper or looper.  Whats the difference? It’s not important. It swam in the ocean. God put the animals on the earth for you and me to eat. Like good stewards of the planet, we only took what we could eat. Never wasteful and always respectful. Leave the place better then what you found it in for the next person to enjoy. Yea thats the ticket.

There is something extra satisfying when you go out and hunt for your meal. It also doesn’t get much better as far as eating or fresh and healthy. It’s one thing when friends get together, cook and share a meal. Its just another added bonus when those same friends can, do and enjoy going out on gods earth, stalking, hunting, and harvesting those animals to cook. So yesterday the lord gaveth, and the dinner club tooketh. We tooketh like a mofo with smiles and happy stomaches.

Dinner Club1

In the coming weeks I suspect there will be more updates to the modified dinner club meeting up and sharing a meal primarily made up with fresh examples of the earths bounty.

We’re a rather dynamic group of people which makes these times special. Conversations around the table range from beautiful eye colors we have been blessed with, to someones malfunctioning tonsils and her daily routine in its rather unsettling maintenance. In the end its laughs and the good life.

Edit: Names, faces, places, events, have been changed and have no relationship to any living person, place or thing and any similarities to real or actual people or events are purely coincidental. At no time were protected animals harmed and all state, federal and international laws observed.

Oh look a pirate just flew out of my ass.

Let ‘er rip tater chips.

Collard Greens

Collard GreensA nice woman at work gave me a bunch of Collard Greens from her garden last week. If you don’t know or haven’t ate Collard Greens before then I feel sorry for you. Collards are a southern and soul food staple.

Collards Greens are super simple to cook and most importantly are damn good for you. Collard Greens are full of
vitamin C and also have a ton of anti-cancer properties that
boost the immune system.Collard Greens1

To this day, you can’t pay me to eat spinach from a can. Canned spinach is straight shit and I’d just as soon starve to death or eat cat before canned spinach. All this being said and known, fresh good Collard Greens are nothing like spinach and are a million times better.

Collard Greens2Cooking Collard Greens is a simple process. All you need is some type of smoked or cured meat, an onion, some chicken stock, vinegar, crushed red pepper and you’re on your way to the races. Typically the meat is ham hocks, but you can use bacon, neck bones, smoked turkey leg, whatever you have. The more ghetto the better it tastes.

There are two parts to good Collard Greens. The Collards and the broth the Collards have cooked in. This liquid is called the “pot liquor”. Its full of nutrients and is best when you soak it up with some corn bread. Hell I drink it right from the bowl when I am done eating the Collards but then again I am a heathen and don’t have a damn to give.

Try some Collards, get healthy, feel good, and thank me later.

Collard Greens
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
The most basic and best tasting soul food recipe is Collard Greens. Easy to make and good for you.
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: Southern Soul Food
Serves: 4-6
  • 2 Bunches of Collard Greens
  • ½ Pound Bacon (6-8 slices)
  • 1 Yellow Onion chopped
  • 1 Quart of Chicken Stock
  • 2 Cups of Water
  • 1 Tablespoon crushed Red Pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons of Vinegar
  1. Rinse all sand from Collard Leaves
  2. Rip all the green leaf from the stems discard stems
  3. Chop the green leafy parts of the Collards set aside
  4. Chop uncooked Bacon
  5. In large pot cook Bacon over medium heat 3-5 minutes until soft and starting to render
  6. Add chopped Onion to cooking Bacon and fat stir and cook until translucent
  7. Add Chicken Stock
  8. Add Water
  9. Add chopped clean Collard Greens (add in batches greens will wilt down fast)
  10. Add crushed Red Pepper flakes
  11. Bring to boil, cover, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for an hour and half or two hours
  12. Add Vinegar stir serve.


ChiliA small cold front came through Florida Saturday night and Sunday. When I say cold I mean a teeth chattering 50-ish degrees. 😉 Yes I know, I can hear all my north and midwestern friends and readers collectively tell me to get F’ed.

Anyway when its cold, there is nothing better then a nice warm bowl of chili. I am not talking that canned shit, or some ground meat with taco seasoning. I am also not talking about anything with beans. I am talking about authentic Texas chili from scratch. Its easier then you think to make and I promise you that once you make it like this you wont want it any other way. Well you might but in your mind you’ll be all like, what the hell is wrong with me, I just should have made it like Brock did.

Chili_meatSome Texans and in fact some sanctioned Chili cooking competitions allow for ground meat. If you like ground meat in your chili go for it. However to me and I am betting you will agree when you try, chili with small chunks of meat his much better. When I make chili I just buy a two to two and a half pound chuck roast and cut the meat up into small cubes.

Authentic Texas style chili is easy to make and really only requires a handful of ingredients. If you want to add beans to your chili, you can, if you feel you must. Authentic Texas style chili however rarely has any beans. Onion, meat, tomatoes is really all you need in as far as the ingredients to make good chili. Of course there is the spices but I am going to show you have to handle that since its easy enough.

Now lets talk spices. Its easy enough to buy Chili powder in the store and if you want to, go for it. Its not a problem. However, I make my own and if you have a blender, food processor, a spice grinder or even and old school mortar and pestle then I would try to make your own chili powder. Its easy to do and tastes 100X’s better then store bought.

Here’s how:

In your supermarket on the ethnic food isle or section look for the dried whole chili peppers. Down here its by the Goya Spanish/Latin canned stuff. Usually there are plastic bags of dried Chipotle, Serrano or Banana Peppers. Grab one of each. Heat your oven to 300 degrees and spread all the peppers out on a baking sheet and toast the peppers in the oven for 15-25 minutes. They will toast up and get a little smokey. Check often, you’ll smell them get toasty. Take them out then let cool to room temp. They will be really dry and brittle.

When they are room temp, grind them all up into a powder. You can use a blender, spice grinder, food processor or a mortar and pestle. In the end you wind up with about a half a cup of homemade chili powder. Put in an air tight container and it will last in fridge forever. Make chili, BBQ sauce, BBQ rub whatever. Try it though. Its easy and beats the tits off regular old store bought chili powder.

The chili and spices are added to the chili in two separate times or as the chili competition people refer to as “Dumps”. You “dump” in half the spices in the beginning of the cook and then “dump” in the other half of the spices at the end of the cook.

This chili is rather thin while cooking. Its almost more soup life then chili like. Don’t be alarmed. The last half hour the chili is cooked with the lid off the pot and the chili will thicken. If its still too loose, you can thicken it up with a tablespoon of cornstarch and cup of water mixed and and added into the chili. But you probably wont need to thicken it when its done cooking.

You can top the chili with damn near anything you like when you are ready to eat. These days instead of making corn bread, I just buy a bag of plain old Frito Corn chips and throw a handful on top with some grated Cheddar Cheese.



Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A little cold outside, then its chili time.
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6-8
  • 2½ pound Chuck Roast, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 2 Tablespoons of Bacon Grease
  • I medium Yellow Onion chopped
  • 2 Teaspoons Beef Base
  • 12 ounce can Whole Tomatoes
  • 7 ounce can Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce
  • 2 Cups of Water
  • 2 Cups of Chicken Stock
  • 4 Tablespoons of Chili Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon of Onion Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon of Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon of ground Cumin
  1. Heat the 1 Tablespoon of Bacon Grease in a heavy dutch oven or similar pot on the stove over medium high heat
  2. Brown cubed Chuck Roast in batches until no longer pink. Set aside.
  3. Heat remaining Tablespoon of bacon grease in pot and add chopped Onion until translucent.
  4. Add browned cubed Chuck Roast back to pot with Chopped Onion
  5. Add 2 Teaspoons of Beef Base
  6. Add 12 Ounce can Whole Tomatoes
  7. Add 7 Ounce can Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce
  8. Add 2 Cups of Water
  9. Add 2 Cups of Chicken Stock
  10. Stir and bring to an easy boil
  12. Add 2 Tablespoons of Chili Powder
  13. Add ½ Tablespoon Onion Powder
  14. Add ½ Tablespoon of Garlic Powder
  15. Add ½ Tablespoon of Ground Cumin
  16. Reduce heat to simmer, cover pot and cook about 2½ hours over medium low heat
  18. Add 2 Tablespoons of Chili Powder
  19. Add ½ Tablespoon Onion Powder
  20. Add ½ Tablespoon of Garlic Powder
  21. Add ½ Tablespoon of Ground Cumin
  22. Increase heat to medium and simmer last half hour uncovered to thicken.
  23. Serve with grated Cheddar Cheese and Fritos Corn Chips





Roast Pork Tenderloin with Apricot Mustard Reduction

I got inspiration for this over at If you are not familiar with Hilah then I would seriously advise you to head on over to her site and poke around. Hilah makes short Youtube cooking videos and she is awesome and funny with a capital Holy Shit! She is from Austin, Texas and has a flair for Tex Mex.

Anyway this is my interpretation of Roast Pork Tenderloin with a Apricot Mustard Reduction.  Todays pork is pretty lean, so the health conscious among us shouldn’t worry too much. As you can see I threw in some roasted red potatoes, squash, and zucchini to null out any doubt of bad caloric intake.


PorkTenderloin3Roast Pork Tenderloin with Apricot Mustard Reduction

Roast Pork Tenderloin with Apricot Mustard Reduction
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A quick and easy roasted pork tenderloin. Pork is pretty lean and flavorless these days so kick up the flavor with a simple apricot and mustard reduction.
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Serves: 6
  • 1 Pork Tenderloin
  • 1 Small Jar of Apricot Preserves
  • 1 Small Jar of Whole Grain Mustard
  • 1 Small Shallot Minced
  • ¼ Cup of Red Wine Vinegar
  • ½ Cup of Chicken Stock
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh Grated Ginger
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  1. For Pork:
  2. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  3. Tie off Pork Tenderloin with butchers string every couple inches
  4. Season Pork Tenderloin with Salt and Pepper
  5. In a heavy oven proof skillet (cast iron) brown Pork Tenderloin over medium high heat 2-4 min per side
  6. When Pork Tenderloin has been browned on all sides move to pre-heated 400 degree oven.
  7. Cook Pork Tenderloin in oven. Check every 20 minutes for internal temperature of 155 degrees
  8. Remove Pork Tenderloin and tent with foil and let rest for 10 minutes
  9. For Sauce:
  10. In separate skillet sweat minced shallot in tablespoon of olive oil and or butter over medium heat
  11. Add about a Cup of Apricot Preserve
  12. Add about ¼ Cup of Whole Grain Mustard
  13. Add ¼ Cup of Red Wine Vinegar
  14. Add ½ Cup of Chicken Stock
  15. Add Tablespoon of Fresh Grated Ginger or ½ Tablespoon of Dry Powdered Ginger
  16. Mix ingredients in skillet and bring to easy boil
  17. Reduce heat medium low and allow sauce to reduce by about ⅓ or ½
  18. Slice rested Pork Tenderloin and server with Apricot Mustard Reduction


What happened to the sweet love you and me had?

Against the door he leans and starts a scene, jimiarrest
And his tears fall and burn the garden green

And so castles made of sand fall in the sea, eventually

This post has nothing to do with Jimi Hendrix other then it was the first song I happened to hear today via the alarm clock.

I dont know why I bother to even set the alarm clock because I and awake and up before the alarm goes off every day anyway. I guess its just insurance for that first time in my life I happen to actually be asleep when I need to wake up.

I wouldn’t say that I am a morning person in that I wake up and feel great, ready to take on the day with a smile and a million bucks in my pocket. No not me. Not before I take the dog out, brush my teeth, take a shit, and get at least two cups of strong black coffee.

Then I am Hercules and ready to conquer what the world puts in front of me. I’m a morning  person in the fact that I rather get up early and get started early to finish early. No matter what it is I am involved in whether its normal day to day work, vacation, weekend chores I rather get going first thing and get shit done. Even if its my intention to not do shit-all, I want to get a fresh early start at it. A strange dichotomy.

A week into 2013 and I think someone forgot to tell Florida its winter. Mid 80’s all week. Air conditioner is still on. Sorry all you northern readers. Hope you’re not too cold. If it makes you feel any better, I may have worn long pants once since October. Didn’t need to of course, it was just to make sure I didn’t forget how to put long pants on. Got to keep those skills up. Use it or lose it and all that stuff.

I made hamburgers last night. I have been grinding my own meat for hamburgers. Damn that sounds funny or obscene depending on my state of mind. Yes, I have been grinding chuck roasts, brisket, and anything else that looks better than the pre-ground stuff. Its not any cheaper as far as I can tell. It does however taste different. I know this is crazy talk and I am still trying to really and unequivocally explain why this is the case. Its the same thing if you buy ground meat as compared to a steak or roast. However I assure you if you try and grind your own meat and make fresh hamburgers or meatballs or meatloaf it tastes better. To me it does anyway. It might just be purely psychological and in my mind. I am probably tapping into the primeval urge to hunt and kill my food and by cutting and grinding my own meat it somehow satisfies this genetic urge and somehow trick my mind into thinking my meat is somehow better. Ok, I know my meat is good, but really is it better then store bought meat? Have you noticed I am just trying to say meat as much as I can here? Meat meat meat meat. Ok Ok, I really did make burgers, see?

Well thats about it for this morning. Time to Hercules this day away. Be good.

Let ‘er rip, tater chip!



It’s beginning to smell a lot like


Its the day before Christmas Eve. It’s Sunday. It’s 8am EST. I should probably start my Christmas shopping. Didn’t I blog about this nonsense and getting an early start this year? Good intentions pave the way to hell. Well I am not officially late. Late will be if I don’t do anything today and go out shopping tomorrow. If I shop today, technically I could still achieve my resolution to begin early, but honestly why break tradition? I’ll go out tomorrow with my father whom I am certain is in the exact same position I am in. Maybe thats where I get it from? Is procrastination genetic? Is “my low level of give a fucks” passed down from father to son? Am I just some kind of holiday season retail anomaly? Why can’t the month of December take as long to get through as getting into the magical underwear of the hot Mormon girl at prom? Why god? WHY?

I am happy to report I got into the festivities this year. I realized I had in my possession a rather nice Christmas blanket with trees and wreathes and whatnot stitched into it. So I pulled it out and put it over the back of the couch. DING DING Christmas decorating and holiday spirit.

Me and awesome = +1
Broken holiday resolution = 0

DWB_BDCakeYou may remember my small video tribute to my friend Debbie in honor of her wish for a certain themed Magic Mike birthday last weekend. Well for being a good sport through it all (hey who doesn’t love dancing retards special people with boners for their birthday?) I made her a birthday cake.

Its basically a chocolate, chocolate, chocolate and to break up the chocolate, some Reese’s peanut butter cup pieces chocolate cake.

I have another good friend that works for M&M Mars, and he’s going to kick me in the balls when he see’s this post and that I besmirched his chocolate empire for supporting Hershey inc. What I go through and do for friends.

DWB_BDCake1Then my arch nemesis in the baking world “Bakerella” tries to sneak attack my birthday cake making plans and below the radar, without consulting me, the self proclaimed master, of baking and cooking amongst our small group of friends and makes the same cake for our mutual friend Debbie.

Damn you Bakeralla! Damn you to H, E, double hockey sticks! I will have my revenge! ;-P

Seriously though, its all good. Its a small testament of how lucky I am to be associated with and have the group of friends that I do. I mean its not everyday a rather masculine man would openly blog about baking birthday cakes and then take such make believe offense of having his baking spotlight stolen from him in the most treacherous of ways. Fella must have some good friends. Yeah, I do. I’m pretty blessed. Except that Bakerella chick, watch your back around that one, she’s like a Martha Stewart with a switchblade knife. LOL

Coffee’s running low, grass needs cutting, and someone needs help moving a couch. No rest for the wicked!

Let ‘er rip, tater chip!


I hate you Discovery Channel, or how I bought Amish noodles and made moonshine.

MoonshineI occasionally stop at a local farmers market for fruits and vegetables. Last week, when I stopped in, the proprietors were selling Amish noodles. Basically it looked like wide-ish egg noodle, but I am pretty sure it wasn’t made with eggs. Ingredients listed flour and some other things and that it was from Indiana was about all I could discern. Anyway it looked interesting so I bought a bag. “Its Amish” I thought to myself. How bad can it be? The Amish are a simple people who basically renounce all modern day amenities like electricity and pretty much every other convenience. Humble is the way to the lord and whatnot.

I know what you’re thinking. Brock, what the hell does Amish noodles the Discovery channel and moonshine have in common? I’m getting to it, you impatient hooligans!

Back to my Amish noodles. I get home, make the noodles. I had some leftover pot roast, so on the fly I made some thrown together beef stroganoff. Or as I was in a rather faded and X-rated mood, called it my special beef strokin’ off. Don’t ask me why I called it that. I assure you it had nothing to do with anything with what it sounded like and turned out rather good. I was more just slipping in and out of my fantasy of being a world renowned pornographer turned cook book author, but I digress. The noodles were good, the beef strokin’ off was good, and as I have a tendency to do, I thought about lost love because the noodles came from fucking indiana. I hate my mind. Not the porn fantasy part, the old girlfriend parts.

Ok Ok the damn point.

Discovery Channel has a new series called Amish Mafia. The premiss of the show, is that in and around one of the largest Amish communities in the country, Lancaster Pennsylvania, is this semi-rogue group of Amish, or pretend to be Amish who have assembled their own little Mob/gang/mafia group of Amish thugs. They have cars, cell phones, guns etc. According to the shows footnotes this group of Amish thugs are not generally acknowledged by the true Amish as legitimate, but they kind of just look the other way. They are basically claiming to be the Amish muscle for settling disputes, charging the Amish businesses protection fees etc. Its so ridiculous because the “Tony Soprano” ring leader of this group is the worlds biggest douche bag you can imagine. His name is Levi and he is essentially a dumb assed roofing contractor who essentially saw an opportunity to be a douche bag in the middle of Amish country Pennsylvania. I give him credit for carving out a special and unique niche business where there was none.

What does the Amish mafia do? Well according to the show and what I briefly described above, Levi and his group of Amish losers, cater to all the normal Amish kids who don’t get to experience much of the modern world. They throw house parties, with x-box, Maytag washers and dryers, iPods, and I think I even saw, heaven help the Amish, a can of  Red Bull and a bong.

Amish kids as I understand it, reach a certain age in their teens, and basically get a year, to go out into the world and fuck off with the full blessing of the Amish elders. Its called something like Rump Shaker or rum shaka, boom shaka. I really have no damn clue and too lazy to Google Fu that shit. One of you teachers pets please hit it up and leave extra credit – take a star from petty cash, comment below for the rest of the class.

So they throw house parties for the kids, extort protection money from the legitimate Amish store and shop owners, backyard illegal MMA fights and gambling. Run off any fake Amish furniture makers and interlopers.

Its crazy. I think its half bullshit and fake, and I hate Discovery Channel because those bastards got me hooked on some cockamamie show. Again.

Yea, they got me with the Moonshiners show too. Now this show I know is bullshit. Bullshit in the way, that while making moonshine exists and is illegal, what and whom they are filming is completely fake and scripted. Technically Discovery Channel cant send camera men and production out and actively commit crime then sell the video of it on TV and make money with it. I am not that stupid.

So, I watch the show, because of a few reasons, but mostly because it looks damn easy to make moonshine. I love knowledge too. I also like backwoods old coots named Mr. Jim Tom. He’s a main character on the show without any teeth. Mr. Jim Tom is like the next old moonshine maker behind one of the greats Popcorn Sutton.

Anyway, this show once you get past all the silly scripted pretend sneaking around, the making of the moonshine is pretty well documented and easy to follow. Its also mildly interesting. Hey, I’m not watching The Voice, or Dancing with the Retards, and by gosh who couldn’t use the skills to make ones very own distilled spirits? Still I have to damn the Discovery Channel for the fake drama and other nonsense, they got me hooked here too. Bastards.

Turkey Turkey Gobble Gobble

It’s that all important day again. What day is that Brock? The day when we’re all thankful for everyone, everything and profess our love for all things peace and beautiful? No not that day. I am talking about the day we sit around all day eating food that some key members of family stood around cooking all day, swearing about how an ungrateful bunch of bastards the rest of the world may be. The day before everyone goes out like a bunch of goddamned maniacs to stand in store lines at ungodly hours in the morning in hopes that you will get a coupon to a free box of tampons or a playstation at a blistering $5 off the retail price.

Oh that day. Yea, buts its so much better and easier to post status updates on Facebook about how you’re grateful for that one time you got a flat tire and the strange man helped change the tire and didn’t kidnap you in the back of his van. That day you didn’t wind up in his basement well, being lowered a basket of lotion and being told. “Its puts the lotion on its skin or it gets the hose again.”

Oh you forgot to be thankful for that one huh?

As every other year, I too have thought about how thankful I am for the people and things in my life. Its the same each year. This year however I have committed to do a little more then tell people I am thankful. This year I will make at least a 10% increase in showing people or things how grateful I am. Anyone can proclaim how thankful they may be, but that crap is forgotten Friday morning while rushing through stores with a Starbucks latte in hand. Go show that person or thing how thankful you may be. It gets a little harder and a little more involved then a status update on Facebook.

I have been blessed with a damn good family and collection of friends. I got a lot of damn thankful to start showing. I’ve never said it enough and I know I have never shown it enough. Reasons and excuses are many just like good intention paves the way to hell. I know my limits which is why I only bid to change my ways and show thanks and gratefulness by a net increase of 10%. May sound small but the way I look at it, 10% of a metric shit ton of thankful and gratefulness to be shown should keep me busy for most of the next year. I’ll report back in November 2013 and tell you how I did. Save the date and all that.

I started my Thanksgiving cooking. Sort of. My southern roots dictate I bust out a cornbread stuffing/dressing to bring to the folks. We’ll see how that turns out. I’m also making some no-knead Parker House type yeast rolls, cranberry sauce, and possibly another coconut lemon cake. I’ll have to knock a fresh coconut out of the tree tomorrow morning however. I’ll document all these side dishes and desserts as much as I can to include in the recipe section.

Thats where I am right now. Thankful for a lot of things sure, but I rather commit to showing it cause in the past I fail at that more times then not.

Let ‘er rip, tater chip!


I Will Survive in My Mach 5

But I am blasting past,
with chickie on the dash
Chickie on the gas, go chickie! 

This is one of my nieces, Charlotte. She is about a year and a half old and almost getting to the age where I can teach her to say dirty words. She loves me. Her uncle will be so proud of her if I can get her to say “Bullshit” on Santa’s lap this year.

We’re in the final stretch and heading toward the election finish line. Can you feel it? Soon there will be no more annoying commercials. No more obnoxious tweets or Facebook posts. (yea right) Well you get the picture anyway.

Reality is Wednesday we’ll wake up and no matter who wins the election between then and January the mainstream media will inundate us with talk of election fraud, ballot tampering, lawsuits and how one party screwed the other. You heard it here first so get ready. Yes, I know its going to suck a little more, but look at it like this, we’ve got the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays fast approaching so there will be plenty of chances to escape the ugly reality of politics for a little while at least. A Romney win will also ease some tensions, but I think its too close to call.

Friday I met up with friends. We had dinner and hung out at a few of our old haunts. A good time was had by all. A friend on mine whom I have teased on this very blog about her baking and cooking skills gave me a cook book for my birthday. Its a reprint from 1957 and actually its pretty good. I suspect she got it as a joke, but I have actually spent the rest of the weekend reading it from cover to cover. My friend doesn’t know I actually look for and enjoy reading old cookbooks as a hobby.

Last week, I downloaded a .PDF of an original cookbook from Berkley, California from the 1960’s that used to be given away by a
grocery store co-op that is no longer in existence. It’s absolutely intriguing to read period cookbooks from the past to see how people ate. It can tell you a lot of things about the time and people. The foods are essentially the same as today, but you can definitely get a feeling for times past when someone is talking about making say a pot roast, with a chuck steak as being economical at .39 cents per pound for the meat. Furthermore, can you imagine look at and reading a recipe in a book that was last popular and seen by the likes of Janis Joplin and Charles Manson or Jimi Hendrix? That’s who was running around this area of California when this cookbook was in the hands of the hippies making love not war movement.

Don’t be surprised if you start seeing some old school recipes show up on the blog. If they turn out good, of course I’ll take credit. If not, then we’ll continue the trend of blaming Debbie or the hippies of the 1960’s. Kidding of course. Debbie doesn’t take any crap off me and is a good sport. The comment section of this blog proves that out.

In other news. I have an internet buddy who lives in Kentucky. He makes a BBQ and really an all purpose spice blend, seasoning. Steve sent me a couple of bottles to try out last week. I have only tasted it on my finger, but its damn good. Watch this space for a complete report. I am going to start using he hell out of it. I think you guys may like it. I have two bottles and may give one away here to a lucky reader but thats only if I can control myself from using both bottles Steve sent me. In any event I’ll set up some links and or emails so that you can order and get your own. It’s that good trust me. I damn near ate a finger off tasting this stuff.

Well that’s it for a Monday report. Get up early and go vote tomorrow. The country needs you more then ever now. Your vote matters. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.

Turkey Pot Pie

In this recipe we’ll explore a very simple and easy to make turkey pot pie.

While I show and make my turkey pot pies in a fancy little pot pie maker from Williams Sonoma, do not fear. You can use this exact recipe to make a normal sized pot pie in a pie plate/dish in a conventional oven.

This recipe is good for getting rid of a lot of leftovers in in the fridge. You can also use this exact same recipe for Chicken Pot Pie, if you want to replace the word turkey for chicken. Its the exact same thing. I had turkey to get rid in my case.

I have broken this recipe down into three parts. Stock, Pie Dough and Pie Filling. Divide and conquer then it all falls into place with very little work.


You need about 2-1/2 cups of chicken stock for this recipe. You can certainly buy chicken stock in the grocery store and use it. If you enjoy cooking you know most good recipes call for good stock. I like having stock on hand. It keeps just fine in the refrigerator and you can use it in anything. Rice, potatoes, anywhere you need water in a recipe you can substitute chicken stock to add or increase flavor. You like gravy? Then you know about stock. Its easy enough to buy stock in the store. Here is the problem. Its absolutely loaded with sodium. Even the lower sodium options are still full of salt. Its just a fact of life with store bought stock.

Watch how easy it is to make your own stock to have on hand when ever you want.

Do you eat chicken? What do you do with the leftover bones and carcasses and necks? You throw ’em away don’t you? Well stop. Every time you make chicken, save the bones and necks and wing tips and put them into a zip lock freezer bag and freeze them. I do this all the time. (If I remember) I’ll have a bag of chicken bones / part in the freezer for six months or more. Don’t even care about freezer burn. When I get a bag full of chicken bones and parts its time to make stock.


  • 2 onions quartered
  • 3 carrots busted up
  • 3 celery stalks busted up
  • 1 gallon of water (or whatever your stock pot can hold)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon pepper
  • Chicken bones parts and pieces. (I don’t even know what the hell I had in the bag, I think there was a turkey breast from 2011, some chicken bones and wings etc)

You don’t have to peel the onions or carrots or cut up the celery. Just chop and or break it all up into chunks that will fit in pot with the chicken pieces. Put it all into a good sized stock pot or large pot and cover with tap water.

This is important. It all goes into the pot cold with just regular tap water. Then you turn on the heat to medium high. You want to start cold.

When the pot just begins to bubble, reduce the heat to medium / medium-low. You want the pot to just barely bubble along, NOT rapid boil. You do this for a couple reasons, but mostly to keep from getting a cloudy stock. You want your stock nice and clear.

You are going to simmer the water gently for about 2 -1/2 hours. The stock will reduce but thats ok. You are concentrating flavor. In the end you will wind out with about 2 to 3 quarts of stock.

After 2-1/2 hours turn off heat and let it cool on the stove for 20-30 minutes. After it has cooled off a bit, strain the stock into a container large enough to hold the liquid. Discard the bits and pieces of vegetable and bones.


Refrigerate the strained liquid. The fat in stock will solidify at the top when you refrigerate the liquid. You can then spoon this off before you using the stock. Look how easy this was to make. Fresh homemade chicken stock. You can keep this in fridge for a month or more. Use it in anything. Try it, I dare you.

Pie Dough

Pie dough is just like stock. You can buy it in the grocery store easy enough. You can also make your own any time you want with just a few basic ingredients. Pie dough isn’t hard to make. Don’t let a bunch of old ladies from church convince you that you need 300 hundred years of experience to make a good pie dough. Not true. If you follow a few steps you can make pie dough whenever you want. Good pie dough too.

You may think good pie dough is made with butter. Your grandmother may have taught you this over many years. I am going to tell you something right now. Your grandmother is wrong. Period the end. Pie dough is very simply made with Crisco shortening. Crisco shorting has two places in this world. The movie Caligula by Bob Guccione with Malcolm McDowell and pie dough. That is all plain and simple. Never forget!

I made a double batch of pie dough in this recipe. Enough to make two nine inch pies or in my case 8 mini pies. You can half this dough recipe to make one nine inch pie or four mini pies if you have a mini pie maker like mine.


  • 4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cup of VERY COLD Crisco shortening
  • 1 teaspoon of salt.
  • 8-10 tablespoons of  ice cold water

Flour salt and cold Crisco into a food processor or large bowl. Pulse in processor a few times just until the dough looks like a course corn meal. Crumbly like but still loose. It took me about 6-7 one second pulses. If you have no processor, you and use a pie dough cutter or even your hands to crush and break up the Crisco in the flour. Just remember to stop when you get to a course mealy texture.

Now, if you have a processor, while its running add the ice cold water tablespoon by tablespoon. Should get to about 8 tablespoons. The dough will all of a sudden come together into a ball. Turn off the processor. If your doing this in a bowl by hand, add the water, and combine with dough into a ball.

When the dough comes together, pour the dough out to a floured surface and knead gently together two or three times. Don’t handle too much. Divide dough into 2 or 4 equal parts depending on if you make the full double recipe of dough I show here or if you halved the recipe.

Form the divided dough into small disk like shapes, place into individual quart size zip lock bags or wrap each in plastic wrap. Freeze the dough.

Here are the key items to remember to make great pie dough. Use very cold Crisco. Work quickly and do not over handle the dough. The less you pulse and knead the dough the better. Remember we want to keep the Crisco and dough cold. Make the dough, divide the dough, wrap the dough and get it back into the freezer ASAP with as little handling and kneading as possible.

Pie Filling

Where home free lets make the filling and get this over with. I am hungry.


  • I onion diced
  • I small bag of frozen peas and carrots
  • 2-1/2 cups of your chicken stock
  • 3 cups diced up cooked turkey. I had some smoked turkey breast to get rid of but remember you can easily use chicken if you want.
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Sauté the diced up onion in a pan over medium high heat with butter and olive oil.

Sauté the onion until it gets translucent about 4-5 minutes. Next throw in the small bag of frozen peas and carrots and continue to sauté and heat the frozen vegetables. 3 or 4 more minutes.

Now its time to add the stock. Pour it in there and deglaze the pan. Add your cooked turkey too. Heat it all through. It will start to boil again. While you’re waiting for the stock to return to a boil, whisk the 2 tablespoons of flour with 1/4 cup of water. When the stock in the pan has returned to a boil add the flour slurry to the pan of boiling stock and stir well to  combine. Bring this all to a boil one last time. Stock in the pan will thicken to a gravy. Season to taste with the salt and pepper. Kill the heat.

You have just made the filling. We’re in the home stretch now. Lets assemble the pot pies.

Heat your pie maker up if you’re using one or heat your oven to 350 degrees.

Get your dough from the freezer about 20 minutes before you want to use it. I took mine out when I started to make the pie filling. You can make this dough ahead of time and keep in the freezer for a week or more. Its up to you.

Roll the dough out on a floured surface to the size you need for your pie plate / dish or pie maker. If using a pie plate or glass dish spay with non-stick spray. Place dough in maker or plate and mold into place accordingly.

Fill the pie with the filling. Cover with another piece of dough and crimp the edges. If cooking in the oven, make a few slits in top of dough with a knife to allow steam to escape.

I used my pie maker and essentially do the same thing. Place into oven and cook about 30-35 minutes. You’re just cooking the dough here. Everything else is already cooked through. In the pie maker it takes me about 14 minutes. So keep your eyes on your pies no matter what method you choose to cook them in.

That’s all there is to it. You just made from scratch turkey pot pies. You know exactly whats in the pies and none of the commercial preservatives and yellow number 6 food color crap.

A little involved? Mmmm yeah. But the satisfaction of making something this good is worth it. I make the small pies in the pie maker and freeze a bunch of them. You can make one or two pies and even freeze the big ones to eat another day. Just reheat in the oven at 350 until heated through.

We don’t get much fall or winter here in Florida to enjoy this hearty type wintery food, but you northerners don’t lack any cold to bust these out. Try these. Just don’t eat one while watching the movie Caligula.