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Chili tonight here.


Beef cooked in bacon grease, Pintos & Kidneys cooked in beef broth, Onion, Garlic, Habaneros, Red Chilies, Chocolate, Diced tomatoes, Tomato sauce, a pinch of brown sugar, Served with Italian bread and lightly salted dairy butter.


..and Bacon Brownies for dessert.

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I threw my daughter's graduation party/feast yesterday. I smoked 30 lbs. of beef brisket, 15 lbs. of pork shoulder, 8 lbs. of ham, and fried two 15 lb turkeys. we had homemade mac&cheese, pasta sa

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I've done Burnt Ends with the traditional Brisket, Chucks, Pork Belly and CSRs, today I'm doing them with boneless Pork Shoulder. 

Pretty much the same as CSRs but using the whole shoulder split in two, looking forward to seeing how these turn out.

Also, going a little different on the Smoked'Mac-n-Cheese.

My last was a No-Boil, this one isn't.



Pork Shoulder Burnt Ends


Grilled Yellow Squash/Zucchini


Pork Shoulder Burnt Ends

Boneless shoulder split in two

Heavily rubbed and wrapped over night

Smoker set to 225°-240° and using Hickory

Cooking to an IT of 180°, the cool and cube

Add more rub, some honey, SBR and butter, pan, foil and return to smoker till fork tender













15oz = 6 C  Elbow/Conchiglie pasta, dried

1 C = 2 sticks of butter

1.5C flour

32oz = 2# Sharp Cheddar/Colby Jack, shredded

7 C of Milk, whole

1 med Onion, chopped

4C French Fried Onions (FFO)

Salt and granulated garlic


Pre-cook pasta

Make a light colored roux out of the butter/flour

Add in cheese/milk a little at a time till all is combined into a smooth cheese sauce

Add salt/garlic to taste

Combine pasta/onion in casserole pans, mix in cheese sauce

Smoke uncovered under meat and let those drippings add their flavor

Cook till a good color is achieved

Butter the top and add FFO

Cover with foil and return to smoker










Grilled Yellow Squash/Zucchini

Split veggies length wise, brush with EVOO and season as desired

Fire up the grill and get it very hot, we want nice grill morks

Grill flat sides down over high heat till just tender






The Finale


These were pretty good, no different from CSRs, no surprise there.

The real benefits are the lower price per lb vs cut CSRs and you get to play with your meat more.



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I've had this damned flu-bug for a week now, it has been one hell of a long week even if I've been sleeping 15+ hours per day...  This stuff is wicked.
So bad I had to cancel a three day hunting trip at the height of our Southern Rut.
Anyways, I finally starting to feel back to maybe something on the scale of at least sub-human and my hunger/thirst has returned... Big Time.
I craved some comfort food and so I coached my wife through a batch of Chicken-n-Dumplings, she did all the food handling to keep my bugs to myself.
Now I wish I could've smoked the Chicken, but I'm just not up to it.
But it still came out danged tasty, filling and reviving of the body/soul.
Without further ado...
2 Chickens halved and seasoned well with Lawrys Seasoned Salt
(Yielded about 8-10C of shredded chicken, I put approx 7-8C into the soup)
(Any chicken will work, even canned)
6 Celery stalks, chopped
1.5 Onions, large, chopped
2 Garlic cloves, chopped
Whatever you like for dumplings, approx 12 servings worth
(I used 3/4 pckg of Mary B Dumplings)
32oz Chicken Broth
4 Cubes of Chicken bullion
1 can Cream of Chicken soup
2t Cornstarch
2T Black Pepper, 1t Celery Seed
In a large stockpot add chicken and bullion cubes, cover with water and boil uncovered for 1.5 hours.
While pot is heating chop veggies and saute in cast iron until onions caramelize, then add to pot with chicken.
Prep your dumplings.
Remove chicken/veggies and set aside to cool, once chicken is cool debone and shred
Add the chicken broth and more water if needed, return to a boil, add dumplings one by one, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer covered for 45 minutes.
Add chicken and veggies back, bring to boil and add thickener, reduce heat to simmer again for 15-30 minutes.


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  • 2 weeks later...

A bit of celebration was in order tonight.

1) Doctor says my pneumonia has cleared enough to go back to work.

2) Received my 2017 bonuses from work, with a little extra than normal.

Great news on both counts!


A quick trip to Costco yielded some nice Prime New Yorks and a few Choice too.

Choice for those cretins who demand an overcooked steak, I'll not ruin Prime beef.

They don't know or appreciate the difference anyways.



NY Steaks

Fresh steamed Broccoli with butter

Garlic Bread










Primes after an hour and half of hickory smoke, IT 100°




Reverse seared in cast iron, IT 130°





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  • 2 weeks later...

After a long hectic week at work I got off work Friday with time to prep out a nice dinner.
With my wife's help some steaks were already thawed and a favorite of ours was soon to be.
Hickory Smoked Reverse Seared New York Strips
Creamy Ranch New Potatoes
Cast Iron Onions
The New Yorks
Dry brine for 3 hours
Fire up the smoker to 180°-200° with Hickory for smoke
Smoke steaks to an IT of 100°
From the smoker to a smoking hot cast iron, sear all sides
Finish temp IT 130° for a perfect med-rare
Dry Brine
Creamy Ranch New Potatoes
Halve a few pounds of small New Potatoes
Boil till tender, but not too tender, drain and cool, set aside
Make a light colored roux with 4T butter and 1/4C flour
Add one packet of Ranch mix, 1T salt and mix well
Add cream or milk slowly, stirring all the time, till a thick creamy consistency is attained
Add 1C finely chopped green onions
Gently mix potatoes into cream sauce
Plate and garnish with a little Paprika or Cayenne
Cast Iron Onions
Prior to the steaks cook thick slices of onion in the cast iron.
A little bacon grease or EVOO and get some good color on them
The onions will season the pan and add to the steaks
The Finale
Edited by ChileRelleno
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My wife and MiL were shopping at Costco and decided I was going to BBQ today.

Well dang, if I absolutely must.


They picked up chicken thighs and St. Louis ribs.

Chicken and Ribs, a Classic BBQ Combo!


Rub the ribs with my homemade pork rub.

Fire up the smoker to 225°-240° with Cherry for smoke.

Low-n-slow, no crutch, cook till they pass the 'Pop, Bend and Crack Test'.


The chicken got a good dousing of EVOO and a savory rub of spices.

They bypassed the smoker and went on the grill.


The women made some sides, they sauteed some asparagus and carrots, tossed a salad and baked some rolls.














The Finale






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Today the kitchen was mine, even the dog got the boot... And stay out!
I got up late and made a fine gut busting breakfast, after all a man can't cook on an empty belly.
Eggs, sausages and biscuits with jam/butter
The Menu
Carnitas de Cerdo
Arroz Mexicana
Frijoles Pintos
Pico de Gallo
Tortillas de Maiz
Traditional Carnitas de Cerdo
Dry brine 2"-3" cubes of pork, then marinate for 2-3 hours in,
3parts orange juice, 1 part lime juice, keep rinds in marinade and cooking.
Salt, 3 cloves garlic, 2 Bay leaves and Cumin.
Drain juice and everything else goes into the dutch oven, add in a quartered onion
I use enough bacon grease and lard to just cover the meat, and cook for 2 hours or tender over medium heat.
Then I switch to high heat to crisp the pork.
Arroz Mexicana
Frijoles Pintos
Soak 1lb beans overnight
Roast, 1 chile jalepeno, onion, tomato and garlic
Add beans and water to cover
Spices, 2T Salt, 1T Cumin, 1t each Paprika, Cayenne and Ancho
Simmer for several hours
Pico de Gallo
Like most salsas/gaucamole, I make it the day before so flavors have time to meld.
Gotta let the chemistry happen.
Assorted fresh veggies chopped fine, tomato, onion, bell peppers, Jalapeno, garlic and cilantro. 
Salt, Cumin, Paprika
Lime and/or Lemon juice
White vinegar
The Banquete
The Finale


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  • 3 weeks later...

The Menu
Butter Basted Grilled Mangrove Snapper
Homemade Yellow Rice
Mega ABTs Stuffed With Cheesy Rice
Meg ABTs with Cheesy Rice
Roasted Pablano chiles, skinned and then stuffed with my homemade yellow rice combined with generous amounts of shredded Chihuahua cheese.
Wrapped in bacon and then smoked over Hickory at 325°-350°
Homemade Yellow Rice
3C brown rice / 3C water / 3C chicken broth
1/2C each chopped onion, yellow/green bell pepper and 1/4C cilantro
3t salt, 2t ground turmeric, 1t each cumin, paprika and garlic powders
(ideally I'd use Saffron for yellow rice, but its so damned expensive)
Butter Basted Grilled Mangrove Snapper
Fresh Mangrove Snapper, well salted inside and out
Grill on high heat basting with lots of butter
The Finale!
The ABTs stole the show!
The combination of chiles, bacon and cheesy yellow rice was incredibly delicious


Edited by ChileRelleno
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Smoked/Seared Savory Herb Chops
Grilled Asparagus
Oven Roasted New Potatoes
Spring Greens Mixed Salad
Smoked/Seared Savory Herb Chops
Some extra thick chops dry brined and then rubbed with a savory herb blend.
Smoked over Apple at 200°-220° to an IT of 130°
Then seared over a blazing hot grill to a finished IT of 145°
Out of the Smoker
And onto the Grill
Bacon Wrapped Grilled Asparagus
Enough said... Fantastic.
No pics till the finale.
Oven Roasted New Potatoes
Chopped new potatoes
Chopped onion, coarse
1 packet Onion soup mix
1T Rosemary, crushed
Salt to taste
1/3C Olive oil
mix well, roast at 425° for 45 minutes
Build Your Own Spring Mixed Salad
Fresh chopped assortment of cucumbers, bell peppers, onions and tomatoes.
Organic spring greens mix
The Finale


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Personally John, I think you should just print out this thread...take it to your wife's publisher...and enjoy the money rolling in from "Chile's LA (Lower Alabama) Cookbook"!

I tell ya what, all the design and formatting in the putting together of a cookbook is a very daunting thought.

Oh sure, I could pay someone to do the work, but then I'd likely never make a dime off sales trying to recoup the costs.

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Sidestepped the smoker today and fired up the grill for a nice dinner of Grilled Herb Chicken and Sausage with Onions/Bell Peppers.
Grilled Herb Chicken
Grilled Sausage with Onions/Bell Pepper
Southwestern Vegetable Medley
Fresh Guacamole and Tortilla Chips
Grilled Herb Chicken and Sausage with Onions/Bell Pepper
Southwestern Vegetable Medley
2 cans Green Beans
1 can Whole Corn
1 can Black Beans
1 can Rotel
1C coarse chopped Onion
1.5C coarse chopped Bell Pepper
1T minced Garlic
1C Chicken Broth
4T Butter
1T each Salt, Cumin
3T Lime Juice
Combine veggies, broth and butter, cook till onions are slightly softened
Add spices to taste and simmer to finish
Fresh Guacamole with Tortilla Chips
8 fresh Avocados, mashed
1C each, fine chopped Onions, Bell Pepper, Tomato
1 minced Jalepeno
1T minced Garlic
Salt, Cumin, crushed Red Pepper and Lime juice to taste
Combine all together, chunky or smooth consistency as desired
The Finale


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  • 2 weeks later...

Caught a few Sheepies this Saturday, mmmm, gotta love some fresh fish.

Cleaned'em up and filleted
Double dredged in seasoned flour and fried till they were white flaky goodness
Plated with lots of veggies and oh man was it good.





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A day well spent,
a morning annoying our children, spend lunch cleaning an old black powder muzzleloader that I inherited and then helping cooking an awesome dinner for the family.
The Menu
Loaded Bacon Cheeseburgers and Homemade Fries
The Fries
Scrub down several large baking potatoes
Julienne into 1/4"-1/2" fries
Deep fry at 375° till just golden, lift basket, let oil reheat and then finish to crisp
Salt/season well while still dripping oil
Serve HOT!
Loaded Bacon Cheeseburgers
5lbs of prime 80/20 Chuck divided eight ways, .62lb patties
Lightly handled into patties and nicely seasoned with Cajun spice, black pepper and salt
Grilled over high heat for a nice sear
Add cheese and get a nice melt
My tips for great burgers

Do not over handle the meat and do not mix spices into it
Season the unformed chunk of chuck and then gently form the patty
Leave them thick and form a deep divot in the center, I use my thumb, this divot keeps them from shrinking up
Sear them well, this is beef, I cook to medium-medium well
The Finale
Edited by ChileRelleno
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  • 2 years later...

Two years... Really?!

Damn, I really do miss the days when this place was active as a kicked ant hill.

My thread, my problem I guess, and by request.


Beef Wellington.

A bit labor intensive, but well worth it, time well spent.


I've learned that the three primary ingredients are all very important and worth every effort to do right.

The Beef needs to be a center cut of tenderloin for it to be an even thickness and tender as butter.

When you sear the beef have that pan smoking hot and use minimal oil.

The Duxelles need to be minced pretty fine,  all the liquid cooked or squeezed out and it should have a thick, pasty consistency.

And lastly you should utilize an All-Butter puff pastry and keep it cold, work fast and re-chill as needed.


I also learned that corners can be cut and many liberties taken with the recipe, and still you can turn out a delicious entree.

Crepes, store bought crepes are great for easing the work load.

Pate is nice, but not absolutely needed. 


The Menu

Beef Wellington

Grilled Vegetables

Mashed Potatoes with Gravy

Strawberries-n-Cream Crepes


Beef Wellington

Heavy on the salt-n-pepper.




In a smoking hot CI pan, get a good sear and then back into the fridge to cool.

You can brush the tenderloin with a good mustard if you wish.




Make your Duxelles.

Saute .5c of minced shallots and  2T of minced garlic in 3T of butter till opaque.

Add in 1lb of minced shrooms, 2T chopped thyme leaves, generously salt them and add .5t white pepper and saute over med-high heat, stirring often till the shrooms release their liquid and then cook off the liquid.

Add a little white wine  and cook that off.

Let cool in the fridge.








Lay down your crepes.

Add thin layer of pate, or thin sliced dry cured ham like Parma or Prosciutto.

Atop that a thin layer of Duxelles.

Then lastly your tenderloin.

Roll like a burrito, wrap in plastic wrap and chill at least an hour to set.




Roll out your puff pastry with plenty of extra, paint with egg wash.

Place your 'Burrito' on the pastry and cover it, roll it, whatever, ideally you want the seams on the bottom.

Trim the edges close, avoid double layers of pastry dough as much as possible, 

Seal the edges well, no holes, and egg wash the whole thing.

Add a lattice work covering if you wish, or just add some decorative slits on the top.






Into a preheated 400° oven, cook until the IT of the beef is 115°-125°, however done you desire.

Pull it 5°-10° before your target temp as the IT will continue to rise.






The Gravy

The gravy gets an honorable mention here, it was really good.

That CI pan you seared the beef in, deglaze it with a bit of white wine.

Add in 4c of chicken stock, stir and bring to a slow boil.

Transfer to a small sauce pan and reduce down to about 3/4c.

Add in 3T of butter, a pinch of pepper and enough corn starch/water mix to attain your desired thickness.


The Finale




Strawberries-n-Cream Crepes

So easy and so good.










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