So yea, its like 2/3 of the way through July and I haven’t posted since mid February. Way to stay consistent Brock. Ah well screw it. Nobodies perfect. I always said I wouldn’t post just to post if I didn’t have something to say. Not that I have anything earth shattering to say right now, but I thought it prudent to reach out to you loyal readers and tell you I am fine, all is good and I pooped three times today. I feel like million bucks.
I got one of these with a buddy of mine. There was another but he’s in the freezer now.
I turned these into this for mothers day this year. She was happy. I’m a damn good son.
I am going back next month with a couple of these to fill up again.
I got some of these.
To ride one of these
This one isn’t mine but I borrow him from time to time. I’m going to get my own.
These three are still with me. Stop! Shut up! and Get Down! We keep shit real.
Its almost Football season. Thank Christ!
So there you have it. A small pictorial to catch you up on the happenings these last couple of months. There is more, but for now I’ll close and just assure you I have more posts coming along.
Sorry for the long delay on this here old blogosphere, and a happy new years to you as well.
The holidays have passed, the new years is upon us and I made a cake.
Pineapple upside down cake. No biggie. Box cake mix. I grew the pineapple though.
I wish I could give you some exciting news. Like I had beers with the President, saved an old lady from a burning building or found Jimmy Hoffa. Alas, I can only attest to spending time with family, taking an editorial end of year rest from the blog and finally back here ready to take on another year of what you have come to expect of me. No one ever knows and whatever happens to strike my fancy.
Today a personal favorite, music.
The other night was the annual Grammys award show. Its shit and crap and I didn’t watch a single second of it. Caught some high lights from the mornings news and its about what I expected. Blah.
Black Sabbath, and Paul McCartney with the assistance of Dave Grohl and the remaining members of Nirvana won a Grammy. Thats cool I guess. As I have pontificated on this blog numerous times in the past, music today as a whole to me seems like crap. We have been trying to find the next big “thing” musically for about the last ten or so years if you ask me. I mean lets face reality for a second. If you’re Paul McCartney you can record yourself taking a good dump and if you can get Dave Grohl to stand around while doing it, you’re going to win a Grammy. I don’t blame the artists one bit. The industry that brings us music has been in such a state of flux the last fifteen years with the advent of file sharing, iTunes, internet radio that the lazy corporate music business model has been trying to find a way to screw us financially which is harder and harder to do in this day of instant sharing of information. Its not about musical talent any longer. Its about how many likes and shares and You Tube views you can get by teenage girls that dictates what we get to listen to.
Super Bowl is coming. Seattle wins. Heard it here first. Ok maybe you didn’t hear it here first, but I would like to see Seattle win. Frankly I’ll probably spend more time thinking about what kind of food to make and eat during the game then either of the teams involved.
Where were you on this day in 1986? I should back up a bit. Remember this day in 1986? Space shuttle Challenger blew to smithereens during blast off due to bureaucratic management bullshit about making a decision and owning up to it. None the less as I recall I was a freshman in high school sitting in a biology class. Word spread fast, Ronald Reagan said something about “Slipping the surely bounds of earth and touching gods face” or something close to that and a few years of investigation. Only to have the exact same problem with a lack of leadership and management decisions to be the leading cause of destroying the Shuttle Columbia on re-entry some years later. Some lessons are need to be learned more then once.
So thats about it really. I hope this finds you guys in good health. Oh yea Dragline and Coconut head say whats up. Let ‘er rip tater chips.
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.
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.
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.
It’s been awhile
Since I couldn’t
Hold my head up high And it’s been awhile Since I said, “I’m sorry”
A year ago tomorrow I lost my Golden Retriever, Lucille to cancer. The hows and whys have been discussed and documented in this blog over the last year so I wont bore the audience with rehashing of the past.
I have been thinking about this approaching anniversary with mixed emotions. I wont lie its been mostly dread and sadness. Dread and sadness because I find myself slowly forgetting the small things about the dog. Her smell, her soft fur, how she would follow or look at me when I talked to her or her paws smelling like Fritos. The tangible things we take for granted. I’ll always carry her memory in my heart and mind, but the small things with time slip away.
I have rescued a couple or new dogs since Lucille has left, and while I have just as much an attachment to them as I did to her, its not the same. I didn’t hold these dogs at a week old. While I know both these new dogs are as happy and content to be here with me now, and the happiness I have in looking at them in their gratified lives there are times I still miss Lucille and wish she was here. All in all I guess I am right where I expected to be mentally a year later. I give myself a C+ or 73%
It’s also been a while since I posted up any McAwesome recipes over in the food section. Well fear not, its summer and its BBQ season. I have been experimenting on brisket and ribs these last few weeks.
BBQ is such a subjective issue with people. It doesn’t matter if I made ribs, chicken, or whatever standing next to Jesus H. Christ himself and my food was touched by the hand of the son of God. People are generally particular about what they consider good BBQ and thats BBQ that they make themselves or were raised eating.
Another reason this is true is because with the exception of a very few restaurants across this country making and selling true low and slow BBQ for profit is a no win proposition. To properly smoke a brisket takes 12-15 hours. Ribs 5-7 hours. Pulled pork 10 hours. So most restaurants cheat the BBQ and cook these meats conventionally in a more expeditious manner to remain profitable. This is the biggest reason when you go out to eat BBQ why its generally just ok. Nothing to knock your socks off or better then what you have done yourself at home following the most traditional BBQ cooking methods.
Well I have been playing around with my ribs recipe. Both my spare and baby back loin ribs and I am making and eating ribs in less then one hour and twenty minutes start to finish. If you didn’t see how I do it, I could put the ribs up with any restaurants and frankly enter them into BBQ contests and Im sure half those idiot judges would passing grade them.
I’ll put a rib recipe up in a few days with the trick. There will be true BBQ enthusiast controversy involved in the manner in which I get them done so quick, but then you can ask yourself, “Do I want ribs like within an hour or do I want to plan an entire day around them?”
Let me get this next part out of the way for the NSA and Uncle Sam in case they are reading along too. “Eat my ass!”
Nothing is private anymore folks. If you don’t want others knowing your business don’t put it out there.
That’s about the size of things. It’s a new day and a new week.
A 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.
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.
Cooking 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.
A 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.
Some 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.
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.
Well I’ve searched and I’ve searched To find the perfect life A brand new car and a brand new suit I even got me a little wife But wherever I have gone I was sure to find myself there You can run all your life But not go anywhere
Another Monday and another arduous start to another week. Ugh. Hang in there we’ll suffer together. Strength in numbers and all that good stuff.
First things first. Good news not so good news regarding the new Golden Retriever I was going to adopt. Good news is I found out his real name. Its Endo. Traveller is really Endo. Not so good news I didn’t adopt him from the animal shelter. Good news is last weekend his owners showed up and claimed him. I was a little bummed but more then anything I was happy Endo found his real owners, or more accurately his real owners gave a small shit about him and came looking for him. Glad he’s back where he belongs with his family. Folks if you have pets particularly dogs do the following:
Put a fucking colar on them with at least a goddamn tag and phone number
If your dog is an escape artist, or you’re a retard who lets the dog run free microchip the dog
If you’re going to let your dog stay outside,think aggressive flea and tick control
If your dog is sick, take him to a vet
So Endo went back home where he belongs which is good. Hopefully his family takes a little better care of him. The real happy ending is that what the animal shelter is there for and trying to do protecting and getting animals back home or to a good home is actually working.
I did not watch the Golden Globe Awards last night. I couldn’t give any less of a shit about what the Hollywood elite was wearing or their imbecile thoughts on say, global warming, or how bad Taylor Swift is in bed who keeps scaring off men and then writing songs about it. I swear if that broad could go down on some junk as well as she can pen an new blistering song about the poor bastard that took a try with her, I would champion her music until they found Jimmy Hoffa.
What I did do this weekend however was quite monumental. In fact it deserves trumpets and angels playing harps! It’s so big I question whether I have the strength and words to convey such amaze balls here on this little blog. Can you guess what I did? Are you sitting on the edge of your seat? Are you sweating bullets waiting for the big reveal? Are you reading along skimming forward a few words at a time for a spoiler about what I did? Are you screaming in your head “YES, YES, YOU SON OF A BITCH TELL ME WHAT YOU DID!”
Are you ready?
Are you sure?
Better sit down.
I pressure cleaned the driveway. My driveway has returned to middle class white suburbia with a nice fresh look. No longer am I that house with the mildewy driveway. I am now back in the ranks of “hey some clean give a shit dude must live there driveway”. I won the war against my driveway pressure cleaning procrastination. It was a long fight. I was up against the ropes from about October through December, but damn it, I fought the good fight. I was knocked down with power naps, NFL, Moonshiners and Axe Men but I got back up each time. I said to myself “you can do it, follow your dreams Brock, don’t let any nap or intriguing TV tell you that you cant have a nice clean driveway again”. So I kept fighting and getting back up like Cool Hand Luke and I was like “Kick a buck, Kick a buck” adding money to the pot in the poker hand of Brock versus the pressure cleaned driveway. Driveway and life against me all folded and got out of the game, and I won, with nuthin’ because sometimes having “nuthin’ can be a real cool hand!”
Then I made some raisin bread. See?
Raisin Bread Good For Breakfast
That’s about it for the weekend. Productive. Hope yours was too.
Peace and love or at the least non-violent acceptance in a friendly manner.
Against the door he leans and starts a scene, 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?
Fresh ground hamburger
Well thats about it for this morning. Time to Hercules this day away. Be good.
Its after Christmas, you’re looking in the refrigerator wondering what you are going to do with all the holiday leftovers. There’s a ham, carrots, celery, some onions and you have no idea what to do? Make soup. Its easy, its good for you and it cleans out some of the fridge. Win! Bonus if its cold outside and you’re freezing too.
After Italian food, TeX-Mex is probably my next favorite and in particular Tacos. Not that fast food shit either. The real deal. Flour tortillas, some kind of meat product, a little red onion, tomato, cilantro, lime. There is nothing better. Flour tortillas are easy to make at home and take no time at all.
You can pretty much put anything protein wise in a taco. Beef, chicken, pork, so I am not going to discuss the protein much here. However I will give you the recipe on how to make homemade flour tortillas. Once you make your own flour tortillas you’ll never buy the pre made tortillas from the store again.
The only special equipment you need to make your own flour tortillas is a cast iron pan. If your a true southerner then you have a cast iron skillet, or you were placed on this earth by aliens. In reality everyone should own one cast iron pan so the special equipment disclaimer for this recipe is more or less negligible. Just be advised.