Monday, July 24, 2017

Life in the backyard

Here's a few shots from the backyard:

Chamomile. We have several pots of this. Leece uses it for tea.

Echninacea. Also good for tea, though we do not have near as much of this as we do chamomile.

Giallardia. It's starting to fade a bit. This is actually from near the Cape Lookout National Seashore. We smuggled it back with us on one of our trips. Note the 'near,' not 'from.'

Morning glories are looking good. We have some hummingbirds hanging around these.

Checking out the sunflowers, which are just about to burst forth in blooms. When they do, we'll have a surge in honeybees, and as they go to seed, we'll have herds of finches chowing down.

Monday, January 16, 2017


We've been busy on the smoker.

Here's a recent project - a London broil, rubbed and left overnight to its own devices:

This was with an applewood rub, to which we added some thyme and a wee bit - just a wee bit - of rosemary. We smoked it at 150, over a fruitwood blend, for a couple of hours. Then, we kicked the smoker up to 325 and brought the broil up to 125 by the probe, flipped it, and brought it up to 125 again. As you can see, it's a nice medium-rare, actually leaning more toward rare. And, it's quite tender. This makes the best fajitas and tortilla rollups, with fresh peppers and onions and cheese. It's pretty good sliced into smaller bits and snuffled with rice and nam pik.

Here is a reasonably decent basic nam pik recipe:

Don't use the fish sauce (nam pla) from Walmart. You have to use the real deal. Tiparos, for example.

However, if you can get some Vietnamese RedBoat 40N, that's the way to go.

Absent real southeast Asian peppers, a blend of mixed Serrano and habanero works quite well.

Here's a small rack of spare ribs, with a brown sugar rub.

 Chuck, the Grillmeister-in-Chief, approves.