fried eggs, red bell pepper, Yukon potato, mushrooms, cheese, tomato

Looks like a dog's breakfast. 

Maybe I can improve its look.

Super good thickly cut bacon started it off in the pan. Removed from the pan. The vegetables cooked in the scant bacon fat remaining. Eggs cooked in butter in a second pan.

Two pans!

That's just the worst. 

The vegetables exuded liquid on the plate, and I must say, the combination of vegetable was immensely satisfying. It's the burnt bits that does it. I drank the liquid. 

Why don't I do this more often? 

Vegetable elements staged as stir-fry, red bell pepper first, arranged to char on one side. Left alone to burn. 

The small potato was cooked in the microwave first, it's added to the bell pepper and situated similarly so that it toasts on one side. Then mushroom and the whole thing is mixed. Then cheese. Finally tomato to heat up but not cook. Then eggs. 

Yellowfin tuna and shrimp

I liked the tuna salad so well I had to do it again. But with frozen tuna this time, not tinned. And with shrimp. And with olive oil and lemon juice instead of mayonnaise. 

I realized something. It's the celery that weeps its liquid and turns the mayonnaise watery. So this time the celery got the same salt treatment as the onion. Both together. They both released a lot of liquid. 

I didn't want to use the last of my pickles so I poured pickle juice into this. So after all that liquid extraction I add more back to it. 

bread, cinnamon, ginger, craisins, raisins

Making dough is the simplest thing in the world. I wish more people would do it.

I'm realizing everybody I know has never made pizza. 

Here's the thing. Buy a jar of active yeast instead of those little packets. It's a psychological thing. Having the jar of yeast changes your attitude about yeast. It's no longer a precisely allotted commodity. Packets of yeast discourage its purchase and its use, while a jar of yeast encourages use. 

Because you'll be thinking, oh, am I going to use this in time? How many packets should I buy? I'm only experimenting with one pizza. What if this yeast fails? Should I buy two packets? Will one be wasted? Will one sit around unused and go past its use-by date? 

Just buy a jar and put it in your freezer. It lasts forever and I don't care what anyone says. Trust me. I'm a veritable yeast expert. Now it's available for your whim. 

As I do.

This is a whim.

The amount of water you start with determines the size of your dough wad. A loaf of bread is 1.5 cups water. 

Now, no matter what any recipe tells you, the amount of flour is indeterminate. For several good reasons. Flour amount in recipes is suggestion. To give you an idea how much it will take. 

The rest is determined by how wet you want your dough. Or how dry and how stiff. And you feel that as you are adding flour. 

That's why making dough is so lovely. It's hands-on. It's hand-felt. 

As for myself, I just keep adding flour until it is no longer so sticky that it gets stuck on my fingers. I don't like that so I keep cutting in more flour by the tablespoonful until it stops being too sticky. 

I'm stirring with a dinner knife and cutting the dough to make wet surface for the flour to adhere and take up more quickly.

Then I play with the dough. 

And through play, the dough develops its gluten. And you feel that too. 

I wanted raisins but was dismayed to see I don't have any after I started. So I used craisins instead. 

Then I noticed the jar of raisins. 

So this has double craisins and raisins. 

That's how it goes around here.

When I went for the cinnamon I noticed the powered ginger, so that's added too.

That's how it goes around here.

The cup or so added craisins and raisins made the dough wad too big for the Pullman pan. 

I want the Pullman to be filled to about 1/3 its height. 

This was filled to 1/2 and that's too high in the pan. 

So I took the dough out of the pan and rolled it like a log a few times to stretch it beyond the dimensions of the pan, then using the pan as measure,  trimmed it both sides. (So both sides have the same cut) That left two rather nice rolls that proofed separately, and watching those rolls rise told me how the larger roll was doing inside the Pullman pan. No need to keep peeking. 

But I peeked anyway.

The outside rolls proofed more quickly than the dough inside the Pullman pan, so those were baked first. And I ate them immediately out of the oven. That breaks a rule about bread. But I don't care. They're delicious. 

They'd be even more delicious with icing, but I'm not up to that right now. And besides, the bread is intended for sandwiches. 


Sweet bread for sandwiches?

Sure. Why not? 

Is someone going to call the sandwich police on me? "Stop that man! He's out of control." 

One time I put cranberries in sourdough bread, real sourdough made with a starter, very strong, not anything like the stuff that you buy, and gave the loaf to my brother.

Those two things don't go together. Tart craisins, and acidy sourdough bread.

He called back saying he ate the whole loaf while driving from Denver to San Francisco, and honestly, it was the best bread he's ever eaten. He told me he kept nibbling in anticipation of a flavor blast from a craisin BLAM! There it is. 

Instant Pot, Kielbasa, Yukon potatoes, napa cabbage onion and corn

Staged in the Instant Pot, such a marvelous device. 

Generous water to nearly cover the sausage chunks.

The sausages cooked two hours to turn them soft near-marshmallow consistency. It shuts off whenever it's done then holds at safely hot temperature.

The sausage removed for the potatoes to take up the liquid, sausages added back on top of the potatoes. Cooked again for twelve minutes.

Then Napa cabbage and corn. Both of those will take minimal cooking, and they don't need pressure, the cooking up to pressure and then down from pressure is enough, so they cook on pressure for only two minutes. Up pfffffft down, that's it. 

So the sausage is cooked three times and the potatoes twice. That worked out well. 

With plenty of liquid with all of its flavor from the sausages. And it's still a bit salty. 

So now I have this pile to nibble on. Like a rat. Until it is gone. 

I'm still craving fresh fruit and berries. Especially Colorado peaches. 

The idea is burn out on them so I'm satisfied through the dark winter of not having them.

Salmon, orange, rice

That's two oranges. They're small. 

Last of the tenderloin, fruit and berries

This is a good idea. 

I ate like a king for week and dropped body fat as side result. I could actually see the body fat melt away day to day. Although I didn't weigh myself so I don't have numbers to back up my claim. I don't care. A long time ago a girlfriend was on Weight Watchers program and she wanted me to walk with her for her exercise portion. I walked all day long, she sat all day long, then she insisted I walk more with her. There was no way she could ever be thin as I am. Her indifference to my over-walking while she's fine walking herself still gets me. 


She spoke of frustration about her measurable weight not matching the obvious fat loss. They don't go down together. She would drop a dress size while the scale showed little difference, then the scale would suddenly catch up and show a numeric loss while her clothes still fit the same way. I can see for myself when I look down and I can see in the mirror, actually day to day, less and less fat. And I had just been weighed at the doctors' office last week so I have that baseline even though the loss had already started. 

So a full tenderloin is a good idea, to nibble shavings day to day, with fruit for tremendously satisfying meals. 

I'm going to do it again. 

And I'm going to do this for a friend. He's going to hospital for surgery and when he comes out I'll have a care package ready. A grilled tenderloin muscle and a load of local fruit in season. And tomatoes at their peak. So he can cut off sections as he likes. And if he doesn't like then he can do whatever he wishes, freeze, share, whatever. He's a serious loner. I want him to know people care.

tuna salad, sandwich

I want onion but I don't want all those onion-y sulfur compounds to permeate during storage, so it is salted to disable it and cause it to weep. 

This is a large tin.

I'm showing the liquid the onions exuded. The onions were rinsed and dried. Now they are harmless.

My bread is a bit dry and the salad sat on top of it as a separate entity unwilling to become acquainted. It was wrapped tightly and chilled. A forced marriage, as it were. The bread softened.

If you think about it, open face sandwich is an oxymoron because nothing is sandwiched between two things.

ginger ale fail

The liquid tasted fantastic before fermentation, had I infused that with CO2 through the Soda Stream, I'd be set, but instead I added a tiny amount of brewer's yeast and that ruined it. The yeast multiplied, ate all the sugar, and then it tasted horrible.

Bad as that, the liquid was fizzing as I burped the jars each day but after chilling they were all completely flat.

I'll try again. A different way.

thinly sliced tenderloin, peach, strawberries

I'm going through the tenderloin section slice by slice as my own personal deli case.

Paper-thin slices.

If your paper was card stock. And a stack of fifty sheets. That thin. Very thin. 

Thin enough to read a newspaper through. 

If you had x-ray vision.

That thin. 

So it will take several days to get through.


The same thing day after day?


Because it's perfect. Because it keeps well in the refrigerator. Because it's summer. Because peaches are perfect right now. And I mean perfect. Tomatoes too. They don't get any better than this. Because I don't have to cook, don't have to do dishes. Clean up is minimal. And because it never gets tiresome. It's not like leftovers. It's more like a personal hoard.

Here's another previous plate.

beef tenderloin, Colorado peach, berries

The case shows tenderloin steaks but I wanted the whole section. The butcher says they can do that. I'm given the choice of grass-fed or regular. I didn't specify. I have no idea which one this is. Then he disappears and I realize he's inside another room next to the counter with a window to the public.  He's trimming the h-e-double shank bones off this tenderloin section. He's deft with his small knife, slicing off scraggly edges, trimming fat, slipping under silver skin and removing the lengths, trim, trim, trim, trim, trim, trim, he goes on and on trimming, he trims the ends off, he trims off more loose bits. He trims the bits off of pieces, he trims off good meat. He wastes what appears to be quite a lot. He trims more than I would trim. Then he ties it. 

Young. Tall. Thin, bearded hipster. They're all hipsters over there. Friendly, outgoing, engaging hipsters. Contrary to what you might have heard or read. Professional. Hardworking. Motivated. Ambitious. 

I told him that just a few days ago I showed a YouTube video of a butcher reducing a side of beef to steaks on a website and the readers were resistant to watching it. Many refused. 

"Oh? Which one?" 

A Japanese-American guy. His body is kind of small and he uses the edge of the table for leverage.

"He's good. I saw that. I watch a lot of butcher videos. You ought to watch the Australian guys and the New Zealand guys butchering sheep." 

I was guessing the cost. Estimating what I would consider outrageous. This exceeded that by 20%. But I don't care. It's worth every cent. Plus I've paid more single dinners. But that was with everything that comes with a great dinner, and I didn't have to cook it or do the dishes. It's moments like this that I flashback to Maui where the cost of food is phenomenal. And I think I can do better at Oliver's. And I will. This is too good to not have. I've really REALLY REALLY enjoyed the beef tenderloin cooked on the Big Green Egg, and the pork tenderloin cooked here at home. Thin slices with fruit or something equally light is a fantastic summer meal. Just nibbling all through the summer, but nibbling on the most excellent meat. I've actually lost weight and it feels great. I want to keep doing this. Small plates of thinly sliced meat and fruit, day after day. 

This was going on too. This meat will make excellent little sandwiches.

Colorado peaches are in season and they are wonderful. 

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