Pan-Fried Spring Smelts with Lemon Dip

#RecipeUpTop (details below): Fresh smelts; 3 cups all-purpose flour; 1 cup coarse-ground cornmeal; 3 eggs; 1 cup whole milk; Salt (to taste); 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil (for frying); For the dip: 1 lemon (zest plus juice); 1/4 cup mayonnaise; 3/4 cup sour cream; Salt (to taste); Method: Rinse the smelt and pat dry.Continue reading “Pan-Fried Spring Smelts with Lemon Dip”

Fast and Dirty Pita Pockets

#RecipeUpTop (details below): 500g bread flour; 300g water; 50g lard or vegetable shortening; 25g sugar; 10g salt; 5g yeast; Method: Combine all ingredients and knead thoroughly. Form into a ball, and allow to rise until doubled in size, about two (2) hours. Divide dough into ping-pong sized balls, and roll flat. Griddle on an ungreasedContinue reading “Fast and Dirty Pita Pockets”

Gumbo.

This is a process. There cannot be a #RecipeUpTop. There can, however, be a shopping list: 1 whole chicken; 1 medium yellow onion; 1 red or green bell pepper; 3 stalks of celery; 3 bay leaves; 4 tablespoons butter or veg oil; 4 tablespoons flour; Okra (to taste); Andouille (or smoked sausage) (optional) (to taste);Continue reading “Gumbo.”

A Fixed Point of Light

There have been times in my life where the power has gone out. Where the wind howls and buffets the windows; where the doors strain and groan against their frames. Where the darkness is impenetrable and unending, with the thickness of damp wool. In those times, I’ve focused on a fixed point of light. InContinue reading “A Fixed Point of Light”

Love and Crime in a Plate of Nachos

I’ve been thinking about nachos a lot lately. Not in a “I kinda feel like nachos” way (though that, too), but more from a curiosity standpoint. You see, I’ve come to the realization that no other food can provide as much immediate, relevant information about a person or place. I’m confident that, with a littleContinue reading “Love and Crime in a Plate of Nachos”

Kitchen Essentials, Part III – Accessories

Well, we covered knives and boards in Part I, then took on pots and pans in Part II, so onward to the real heart of a good kitchen setup: the accessories. I am a kitchen minimalist. I don’t like drawers overflowing with nonsense, or countertops covered in gadgets. As a general rule, if I haven’tContinue reading “Kitchen Essentials, Part III – Accessories”

“Colby Cove” Cheesy Buttermilk Biscuits

#RecipeUpTop (details below): 350g all-purpose flour; 1 cup shredded cheese; 1 cup buttermilk; 50g lard or vegetable shortening; 25g butter; 4 teaspoons baking powder; 2 teaspoons garlic powder; 2 teaspoons onion powder; 2 teaspoons dried oregano; 1 teaspoon salt; 1/4 teaspoon baking soda; Cracked black pepper (to taste) Method: in a large mixing bowl combineContinue reading ““Colby Cove” Cheesy Buttermilk Biscuits”

“Ugly” Tortellini With Pink Sauce

#RecipeUpTop (details below): For the pasta Six eggs (300g); 450g AP flour; 10g salt; For the filling: 2 cups ricotta; Seasoning (per preference, to taste); Method: Combine the eggs, flour, and salt, and knead into a firm dough. Allow to rest for thirty (30) minutes, then process through pasta rollers to desired thickness. Cut rounds,Continue reading ““Ugly” Tortellini With Pink Sauce”

(Inter)Dimensional Lumber

I’ve long held some secret beliefs about the nature of space and time, and of our reality, and all of them stem from working with dimensional lumber. This was recently brought, once again, to the forefront of my mind when Mrs. 10Chickens suggested I build a desk for our oldest to have a dedicated spaceContinue reading “(Inter)Dimensional Lumber”

Kitchen Essentials, Part II – Pots and Pans

Well, you’ve got yourself a knife and board. Next up: invaluable, mutli-functional, buy-it-for-life pots and pans. If you’ve been reading this blog, you know my favorite piece of cookware in the kitchen is my giant cast-iron skillet, Ol’ Faithful, and we’ll get to that. The reality, though, is it’s not the first thing I’d buyContinue reading “Kitchen Essentials, Part II – Pots and Pans”