biscuits, cranberry preserves, apricot preserves

These two biscuits have a lot of butter in them. Similar to a pie crust.

1/2 cup flour
1/4 stick butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 level teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup approximately milk


This is one slice of the pork shoulder processed in the Cuisinart with one thick slice of dry dense sourdough bread. That turned out to be nearly 50% pork to a little over 50% ground beef. Flavored with pequin pepper flakes, Worcestershire sauce, catsup, salt/pepper, garlic, oregano. 

peach waffle, bacon, egg

A batter is made with:

juice of half a tin of peaches
half a tin of peaches
melted butter
vanilla extract
flour (in increments to desired viscosity)
baking powder

I made too much. Half is leftover. Another whole waffle-worth of batter. 

red kidney beans with onion and pork shoulder, polenta, egg

This is half of one of the slices of pork shoulder minced and fried in a pot that will cook the beans. Half a bag of frozen onions is added to the meat after it browns. The pot is deglazed with sake and that bit of wine completely changes the whole combination into something with much more depth and character. It is an extraordinary combination. You know, I honestly do not understand why a plate like this doesn't fill cafe menus across the land, it it such an impressively satisfying meal, the combination of flavors and interesting textures is excellent. 

The beans are kind of large. You don't get that many beans in a tin. I aways thought that was too much beans to eat, but it's not and it shows that dry beans are a much better value. Mum was not big on beans. We had baked beans from a tin and we had frozen lima beans with butter and that's pretty much it. Had I known beans can be this delicious, I'd have prepared them a lot more than I do and I'd give them the respect they deserve. This really is very good. And sake is the key. Sake and butter changes them into something spectacular. Then grits made from popcorn cannot be beat. They're altogether better than grits made with pre-milled corn. Either popcorn or dry and alkaline- treated corn for posole, both kernels work very well, in fact, dry beans work the exact same way and the result is as excellent, and that's another thing that I do not understand why it isn't a lot more popular, all that excellence just sitting there available but largely ignored. I never see anything about this milling kernels and dry beans in a coffee mill to use as polenta and even to use as a base and to flavor homemade crackers and bread. I've never seen a chef do anything like this in any of the cook challenges, yet here it is, and grinding them yourself on demand is better than than all the milled products available intended to make this easier and more convenient, while in fact, nothing can be more simple than adding milled grain and kernels and legumes to boiling water for a flavorful paste to be used various ways such as dips, pancakes, waffles, crackers, bread, breakfast grits, sexed up polenta, sweet bean fillings,   

chocolate oatmeal

And brown sugar and cinnamon and raisins and salt.

It seemed like a good idea.

pork shoulder with chiles, pineapple rice

The chiles are fried dry in the same pan that cooks the sliced pork.

pork shoulder, green beans, red bell pepper, potato

Hatch chile rellenos egg roll style

Frozen months ago. They look unpromising.

Deep-fried directly from frozen. I can't believe how delicious these are. I forgot how good they are. One bite and BLAM your mouth is filled with insistent aggressive flavor and smooth melted cheese satisfaction. Such a powerful combination of things and looking so innocuous this whole time. Two is enough but they're so immediately addictive they're like crack and one cannot get off them until they are gone. That's how dangerous these things are.

vanilla pudding

Custard made with egg yolks and vanilla extract, corn starch to thicken further.

The weird thing is, cornstarch is activated by boiling but it doesn't thicken completely until chilled, while the egg yolks thicken at 160℉, well below boiling, so they're added after the mixture is already boiled with cornstarch, tempered in, off the heat. It's an odd double-thickening approach with two different thickening behaviors.

pasta salad with shrimp

Vegetables for pasta salad.
* cucumber
* celery
* onion
* red bell pepper
* jalapeƱo pepper
* tomato

Shrimp for pasta salad.

Cooled but not rinsed pasta for pasta salad. Not rinsing assures a layer starch on the surface that works very well for adhering the mayonnaise dressing.

great northern beans with bacon and smoke, grits, sourdough toast, fried egg

Three thick pieces of applewood bacon is fried for a tin of beans. Grits are milled from dried pesoli, corn kernels processed in alkali solution popular for menudo. The Denver sourdough is a wickedly powerful culture. 

sausage sandwich, Denver sourdough bread

The bread is more strongly flavored than the sausage and mustard. It's like a sumo wrestling match in your mouth, big fat flavors shoving each other around and its outrageous. Even better would be a wet version of this, the original sausage roast juice and the vegetables soaking the bread. The bread is a challenge, it's tough, it can take it, the bread can hold up to a soaking. 

Denver sourdough boules

Baked with their metal lids high as the oven goes for twenty-five minutes. And another ten minutes full heat with the lids off. 

sausages, potatoes, onions, cabbage

Apple, cinnamon, chicken sausages.

cheese popcorn

Drizzled with generous butter melted and browned in the hot pot that popped the corn kernels. Heated through with the butter are spices and herbs chosen today just for this, cumin, coriander, piquin chile flakes (the hot tiny bird's eye type), oregano, salt and black pepper. Grated Parmigiano Reggiano distributed throughout and cooked 2 minutes in the microwave to melt the cheese onto the popcorn so that the grated cheese doesn't sink to the bottom.

sourdough toast, cranberry preserves

I forgot how good this cranberry mix is. A bag of cranberries boiled with fresh grated ginger and a lot of sugar and a little water. The cranberries produce their own pectin when they boil and pop open.

rolled pizza baked as bread.

Everything that I make like this breaks apart when it bakes, a rolled up pizza like the two Stromboli. The bread rises inside and bursts through in the oven. When I slice the dough to direct the expansion during baking then it rips through the cuts that I make to form one large cut. So far all three baked to a mess.  

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