Some major life changes have been going down in the ramblin’ house the last few weeks. The most prominent is that I am now living alone. I have my trusty guard dog of course but I am devoid of another human under my roof. It is a good change for me, I assure you.
Change brings many challenges and this change is no different. My first order of business is cleaning and reorganizing everything in the house. An act of reclamation, if you will. As I work my way through the house I am also making a list of repairs that need to be done. Here’s the fun part: my neighbors are helping.
I came home one day to find my neighbors from both sides talking about what they could do to help. They had already decided that they would repair some of my fence and fill in the giant ruts that repeated tow truck travel had created (much better than their bake a cake idea if you ask me). How do I thank them for their time and sweat? A bottle of booze perhaps? No, that was given after they helped shovel up the trash left behind in the basement and hauled out seven bags of it to the curb. This called for something better by far. This called for BBQ.
So I am up early with two pretty pig pieces on the smoker. I can’t wait to share this with everyone! They’ve already done so much for this damsel in not-so-much-distress I look forward to thanking them with a full belly of tasty pulled pork.
Quite a while ago I made a “roast” chicken in the crock pot and it was amazing. Well, to be honest the meat was amazing but the skin was so far beyond ick. No browning occurred which I expected but that also means soggy skin. However this post isn’t about chicken so much as it is about fish. The fish does share a common step in the prep though and THAT is what I wanted to share.
Foil crumpled into a loose ball and placed under meat will elevate said meat (chicken AND fish alike) so that it isn’t sitting in it’s own juices/grease. By cooking fish this way in the oven it saves the poor things from swimming in their own oils and keeps the coating crispy. And we all know fish need crispy coats.
We always give my mom a hard time about the house wine that she keeps on hand. Is it because it’s a bad wine? Nope. It’s because it comes in a box.
I grew up in a house with my mother, my father, and a blond child they still tell me is my sister. Mom did almost all of the cooking. Dad was in charge of the Mickey Mouse shaped pancakes and occasionally chicken on the grill (I loved the little burnt BBQ sauce parts). Only in the last few years has he retired. Coincidentally this is also when he started baking cookies. My folks live in a city about an hour away and every time I visit them the cookie jar has fresh cookies in it just for the occasion.
Christmas is when he brings out the big guns though. We are talking about Grandma’s recipes here people. Heritage in edible form. The super special stuff. In a word: snowballs. Ok they’re known by other names as well. Like Mexican wedding cookies, Russian tea cakes, and several others I’m sure that I’m missing.
My sister and I have always loved these cookies when grandma would send them in her Christmas package. Now that Dad is making them they are even more special… even if they’re growing in size. It just means that there is more surface area to cover in powdered sugar and I am more than good with that idea. Although it also means I need to find a bib as that stuff goes everywhere!
On this day I say thank you to my dad for continuing the family tradition with a simple recipe that brings so much joy.
I’m not afraid of spiders or bats. I’m afraid of bees though. I know it’s silly but I will stand frozen huffing and puffing like a fool till the bee flies off on its merry way. It’s silly. I know. But it’s not nearly as silly as being afraid if the biscuit can that hasn’t popped when the wrapper is pealed back. I’m not exactly afraid but it sure makes me jump! Aaand it’s pretty entertaining according to Ryan. I guess as long as it makes him laugh then I’m ok with it being just another goofy thing about me.