89. Barbecued Chicken (With Plum Baste)

Hello, kittens!

Today I’m sharing with you a DiS card that I made–well, I don’t know how long ago it was! Here is an action shot of Rick grilling the chicken:

rick at the grill

Rick does have 2 arms. I promise.

The grass is green and we’re grilling, sooooo, it was over the summer. THE SUMMER!!!!

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I don’t remember much about this dinner (although I did have a beast of a time finding canned plums. I actually called around to grocery stores). So, instead I’ll tell you a story from my holiday break back in December (no, I’m totally not far behind with this shit! Ha!)…

So, while I was at home, my parents received a lot of Christmas cards. But a card from one of my dad’s college friends was of particular interest. It was all holy n’at:

Religious-Christmas-Card-Designs-06

It didn’t look like this, but let’s imagine that it did

The inside was full of Catholic stuff–Jesus is the Reason for the Season, bible verse, etc., etc. Because this dude and his fam are all types of Catholic (not that there’s anything wrong with that…but just wait for it…)

At the bottom of the card there was a hand-written P.S.:

“We’d love to know how Maria is!”

After reading the card:

My mum: Who the fuck is Maria?

She hands me the card and I read it.

Me: Oh my gawd…they don’t know my name.

Mum: What?

Me: They TOTALLY don’t know my name! That’s me. I’m Maria!

Mum: What?!?! Noooooo. Hm——–OMG, they totally DON’T know your name!

Gentle reader, you may ask, why does it matter if they know my name…?

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Gourmets & Groundhogs: Hot Shrimp in Vermouth

Happy Groundhog Day!

In honor of this most bizarre of holidays, I made a dish from the 1971 cookbook, Gourmets & Groundhogs by Elaine Light.

Gourmets & Groundhogs

Published by Gray Printing, DuBois, PA. Please note that in PA we pronounce it “Doo-Boyz”

I found this volume at an antique store in Bedford, PA.

groundhog map

Punxsutawney! What a name for a town. Although, I can’t really judge since I grew up in a place called Zelienople.

Bedford is not on this map. If it were, it’d be in the lower right hand corner. Actually, it wouldn’t even be on here. Also, I forget that Punxsutawney is really not that far from Pittsburgh. I wonder why I’ve never made it to Gobbler’s Knob for February 2. I need to put it on my bucket list. Or at least I need to join The Groundhog Club. Membership is only $15 (although in 1971 it was only one buck).

Anyhoo, this book is really cool. In addition to over 200 pages of recipes (some of which are really interesting–I need to revisit this one), there is a history of the Groundhog and the celebration.

gourmet groundhogGroundey

The book is kinda wackadoo. Let me rephrase that—the whole groundhog thing is wackadoo. But I love it.

groundhog day menu

If I had planned ahead, I would have hosted a Groundhog Day dinner. Just to make Groundhog Punch. Perhaps next year!

After the big snow, I didn’t have a chance to go to the grocery store, so I chose a recipe that required ingredients that I already had on hand. My selection:

Hot Shrimp in Vermouth

The preparation of this dish was hella-easy (did I just throw a “hella”?). Not even worth mentioning. This is was the end result:

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X-Files Iced Tea

In the season one episode “Tooms” (where we revisit monster of the week Eugene Victor Tooms and all-around creepazoid Doug Hutchinson), this happened:

Ah, the scene that launched a thousand ‘shippers!

So here is some iced tea (that I obviously didn’t make):

iced tea

NOW HOLD THE PHONE!

DID SOMEONE SAY TEA???

Casual cup o' tea

Hell yeah, I did!

Oh, that’s right, kittens. Once more. With feeling!

You know you want to…

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Fox Mulder’s Motel Cocktail

In the episode “Syzygy”, Mulder and Scully go to a small town because two teenage boys have been killed under mysterious circumstances (one of the kids is Ryan Reynolds!). Turns out that something is going on that is making things not quite right.

While in town, our favorite special agents find themselves acting not quite right as well.

Scully smokes:

scully smokes

And Mulder makes, what could possibly be, the saddest cocktail in the history of the world:

drunk mulder

Actually, I can imagine Mulder making this cocktail on the regular; he doesn’t seem to have any social life whatsoever, he receives answering machine messages from 1-900 numbers and doesn’t even have a bedroom. That is a man who does not buy Chardonnay or mix cocktails with hand-crafted bitters and slices of citrus.

So I gave it a shot! ***

Fox Mulder’s Motel Cocktail

  • 1 half-empty, flask-sized (375 ml) bottle of vodka
  • 1 half-defrosted can of orange juice concentrate

Spoon a few spoonfuls of slush into vodka bottle. Screw top on. Shake. Drink.

sadcocktail.jpg

I have this pack of cigarettes in a drawer. I discovered that the key to quit smoking is to get a pack of cigarettes that you HATE. I hate these camels. They will continue to live in the back of the drawer.

***Please note that I am wearing my official David Duchovny t-shirt. Also please note that the reason the video is in portrait is because it’s the only way I could get the phone to sit upright. Also, I don’t have a double chin–it was the only way I could get the phone to sit upright. Thank you.

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Agent Scully’s Pizza

I told you it was going to be all X-Files all the time this week–so here I am sharing with you Special Agent Dana Scully’s pizza.

Why pizza?

Have you ever seen the episode “Bad Blood?”

It’s super. In fact, since I have been watching choice episodes in anticipation of the revival on Sunday, I have decided that it may be my all-time favorite.

If you haven’t seen it, you can watch the entire thing HERE. Even if you don’t consider yourself a fan, you should watch it because it’s hilarious (David Duchovny’s comedic skills are underrated, IMHO). The story is told first by Scully’s POV and then Mulder’s–which are different. Not so much in what happens, but the details.

But! One detail that is the same between both stories is the pizza. Pizza that Scully orders after her first autopsy of the day…

Heart weighs 370 grams, tissue appears healthy. Left lung weighs 345 grams, tissue appears healthy. Large intestine … 890 grams, yada yada yada… Stomach contents show last meal close to the time of death, consisting of … pizza. Topped with pepperoni, green peppers, mushrooms … mushrooms … That sounds really good.

But she doesn’t get to eat it because Mulder shows up and tells her she has to do another autopsy.

scully bagel

Scully is HANGRY.

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I feel you, girl.

So, Scully, this is for you–a pizza topped with pepperoni, green peppers, and mushrooms…

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David Bowie’s Shrimp Tempura (1978)

Hi.

As everyone in the western world knows, Mr. David Bowie left Planet Earth late Sunday night.

bowie eating on a train

1973

This made me incredibly sad. Surprisingly so. I cried in the car on the way to work today when his duet of “Little Drummer Boy” with Bing Crosby came on the radio. I dunno, it just gave me the feels.

I felt really stupid crying for someone I had never met; but then I got to work and my boss was teary-eyed as well.

Many other writers have articulated, much better than I ever could, what a fucking boss Bowie was. So what could I do to honor everyone’s favorite Space Oddity?

Well, I did what I know how to do. And that’s make food from the 70s!

Here is one of his favorite recipes, at least according to this 1978 cookbook:

the happy cooker

Now I desperately want a copy of this book. Too bad the cheapest copy is over $90.

The Happy Cooker, get it?

I had no idea who this woman is. So I took to the internet to find out. And, wow! Monique van Vooren is quite the lady: skater, Belgian beauty queen, Fulbright scholar, she even appeared in an Andy Warhol movie (also, she is still kickin’ at 88)!

But right now, let’s focus on the fact that she spent numerous nights with David Bowie, made him tempura (or did he make it for her?) and then wrote about it in a cookbook…

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Posted in 1970s, cookbooks, Food, Recipes, Retro Food, Retro Recipes, Shrimp | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Mrs. Ezio Pinza’s Spaghetti with Chicken

When I was asked to make a pasta dish in support of San Giorgio’s #PastaForGood campaign, I had to go retro. I mean, it’s my schtick.

So I took to the interwebs and, on the Curly Wurly blog, found images from a 1950s cookbook published by San Giorgio back in the 1950’s called Try It This Way  by Mrs. Ezio Pinza.

Try it This Way.jpg

The bottom dish looks scarily like Tuna-Cheese-Macaroni-Loaf

I had no idea who Ezio Pinza is. I had to look him up. I first thought of the other Italian opera singer, Mario Lanza. But to be honest, I only know who he is because of the film Heavenly Creatures (which, if you haven’t seen, you need to–especially if you like true crime, Kate Winslet,  Peter Jackson, and/or New Zealand). mrs pinza.jpg

I feel bad for Mrs. Ezio Pinza. Although she is, according to the cover, a noted hostess, this is just like all those old church cookbooks that I have; none of the women get a first name–they’re all Mrs. So-and-So.

Well, I hope she at least got paid for them to use her face.

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As you can see, there were a lot of recipes in this booklet. AND so many types of pasta that I have never seen in the store. I want some of that Genova Style twirly noodle that looks like Whitney Houston’s I Wanna Dance With Somebody hair.

whitney curls

But anyhoo, from Mrs. Pinza’s 58 recipes, I had to choose just one to make.

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I seriously considered making the amazing Spaghetti With Clams molded ringy thing (illustrated above); but that made 6 servings, and I wanted to cook a dish that I would actually eat the rest of the week. So I chose Mrs. Ezio Pinza’s Spaghetti with Chicken:

spaghetti with chicken.jpg

I know you’re all probably upset that I didn’t make the Spaghetti Cheese Loaf. But do I need to remind you once again? Tuna-Cheese-Macaroni-Loaf!!! And doesn’t it look like that loaf has eyes?

I also chose the Spaghetti with Chicken because chicken thighs and drumsticks were BOGO at my grocery store.

Dude, Mrs. Ezio Pinza was right: these recipes are economical!

DSCN1952Furthermore, San Giorgio was nice enough to send me some of their products.

The recipe calls for a can of San Giorgio Spaghetti Sauce, which I did not have (nor do I know whether or not is still in production), So I took the Pomi tomatoes and threw together a little concoction of my own that was basically strained tomatoes, olive oil, dried Italian seasonings, fresh parsley, garlic powder, and a lot of Parmesan cheese.

I lightly browned the drumsticks and then covered them with my  Macgyver’d sauce. I stirred in the water, some salt and pepper, and minced parsely (although I used much more than the 1 tbsp that Mrs. Pinza recommended).

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I covered the chicken and simmered it for around 90 minutes.

Here is the result!

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This was tasty. Simple. And, like Mrs. Pinza said, economical. I don’t believe the recipe states how many people this dish should feed, but so far I’ve gotten 2 dinners and 1 lunch from it and there’s still some left.

NOW! I behoove you to go to the San Giorgio Facebook page HERE and post a “pasta moment” with the hashtag #PastaForGood. Why? Because for each pasta moment, a box of San Giorgio pasta will be donated to a food bank in Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, Philadelphia, Washington D.C. and Baltimore.

That is a super-easy way to help some of our neighbors in need.

What is a “pasta moment”? It can be at home, at a restaurant, with friends–just share a picture with the hashtag #PastaForGood. It’s that simple. Hell, you read this post. That’s a pasta moment! Go! Post a photo–it’s for a damn good cause.

For more details visit pastaforgood.com and sangiorgio.com

The campaign ends on January 15, so move your butts, kittens!

san giorgio products.jpg

Posted in 1950s, cookbooks, Food, Recipes, Retro Food, Retro Recipes | Tagged , , , , , | 10 Comments

Cabbage Crown and 2015 in Review

Hellooooooo! I’m back from my Christmas vacation. I hope that you all had a chance to take some time off and spend it with family–regardless if you celebrate Xmas or not. VACATION RULES!

My Christmas was great. I received so many lovely presents from my family, but the items of most interest to you all would most likely be my Nicolas Cage wine goblets:

And a Sous Vide cooker (thanks, Nick & Laura!) Now I can cook plastic bags of food in water at a low temperature whenever I want! I have no idea how successful I will be with this technique (Conor at One Man’s Meat is absolutely bonkers for sous vide), but I am looking forward to experimenting!

But first, a look back at the year that was!

2015 highlights:

But the most important thing that happened this year was Margot!

margot

Oh, and I met David Duchovny.

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David. Fucking. Duchovny.

I die.

So, to put a cap on 2015, so to speak, I’m sharing with you a doozy of a recipe that I made back in November. From the 1978 book, Family Circle Casserole Cookery, Cabbage Crown!

casserole cookery

cabbage crown recipe

cabbage crown recipe2 cabbage crown recipe3

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Posted in 1970s, cookbooks, Food, Ground Beef, Recipes, Retro Food, Retro Recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Christmas Parade Party Buffet!

A Christmas post, kittens!

This year I had a party for the Christmas parade because it goes through my neighborhood.

ALL THREE HOURS OF IT.

I shit you not. It was like the Macy’s Day parade. But with meth addicts and Tea Party floats.

Look! There were actual balloons!

beaver balloon

Beaver!

And basically every marching band in Maryland. Plus a ton of really, really, really good Star Wars cosplayers. Darth Santa was my favorite.

Darth Santa

Do you think he decorated the death star this year?

Anyway, I threw a parade party. I even decorated my house and stuff. Like, I put lights on my porch and everything.

Here is my sweet little tree:

xmastree

In addition to Weenie Wreath (which will make it’s annual appearance at Christmas Eve along with Egg Nog), I made an assortment of snicky snacks from a variety of cookbooks (two of which are new acquisitions, courtesy of my dear friend, Dillon).

I am featuring the retro dishes. First, I’ll start with the punch. Go to the jump to see the food.

From the 2-in-1 International Recipe Card Collection (1977), it’s Scandinavian Punch!

Scandinavian Punch

Card 201 features a traditional smorgasbord (I do LOVE a smorgasbord), so it was perfect for my parade party full of nibbly things.

I followed the recipe to the T. I even found Aquavit! My one deviation was the Christmas Ice Ring. “Arrange small red, white, and yellow roses and holly springs on ice…” AS IF! I sliced up some red and green apples and put ’em in the mold.

Scandinavian Punch

The mold WOULD HAVE BEEN quite lovely if you could have seen the apples. And the thing is, I looked up how to have clear ice rings and it said that if you used distilled water it would be clear. Well, I used distilled water and look at that photo. You can’t see a damn thing. Oh bother.

Not that it mattered in the end. Like any good party punch, I just kept refilling the bowl with ice cubes and random amounts of the original ingredients.

And it was delicious!

I’m telling you–punch is the way to go with parties. Just have punch and tell other folks to bring wine and beer. You don’t have to worry about mixers or fancy glasses. It’s fantastic for a open house type of party as this was.

Now let’s get to the food (there are TWO new cookbooks to look at!)

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24-Hour Salad

I plucked a grey hair out of my left eyebrow this morning. This surprised me; although it should not, considering that for over five years, I dye my hair, not for fun, but out of necessity (I am sitting with light ash brown on my head right now as I type. No, seriously. I am sitting here tinting my roots).

Damn did that eyebrow thing make me feel old!

However, I didn’t feel as old as I did at a party I attended back in October. The theme was housewarming. The hostess was the girlfriend of my buddy and DiS! regular, Noah.

Here’s Noah:

sausagerolls

And guess what? He made Nic’s British Sausage Rolls! I was all, “oooh, those look good. What are those?” And I was surprised/thrilled/flattered when he said that’s what they were; I love it when folks make recipes from the blog! And, as always, they were deeeelish. Seriously, I recommend this recipe for any holiday parties that may already be on your calendar.

But anyhoo, for the housewarming party I decided to bring a dish from one of my cookbooks that I have not yet featured–Recipes That Please Cook Book (1966) compiled by the St. Alphonsus Mothers’ Club of Springdale, PA.

Recipes That Please Cook Book

1966 cook book

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It was still warm out, so I went for a salad. 24-Hour Salad courtesy of Mrs. Philip Wagner of Ambridge, PA.

october blog 2 006 october blog 2 005I also picked this recipe because tucked in between the pages of the book was this:

24 hour salad recipe by hand

It’s the same recipe that’s in the book, so I wonder if this copy was owned by Mrs. Philip Wagner of Ambridge, PA.

OK, time to make the salad!

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Posted in cookbooks, Food, Fruit, Recipes, Retro Food, Retro Recipes, Salad | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments