Friday, February 26, 2010

Smoking can be good for you

I have a real passion for barbecue and spend a lot of quality time with my grill. A beer in one hand and a rack of ribs in the other seems to be a pretty good way to spend a sunny AZ day. True it takes a long time for the meat to cook, time to absorb the smoky goodness from the wood, time to grow moist and tender, but good things can seldom be rushed.

I have pretty much conquered all the usual meats, including, with the help of my brother, brisket. The next thing I want to attempt is to make, cure, and smoke my own hotlinks. Hard to beat a good smoked hotlink sandwich...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Home on the range

Another Buffalo Bites the Dust

Another quiet weekend at Tiny House, nothing of note, even Chinese New Years was muted. I had planned to make some oriental style food, but by the time time dinner rolled around I opted for Buffalo burgers (the other red meat). Did make some rice in my clay pot celebrating a couple of thousand years of Chinese invention - this style pot is older than dirt, literally. Next I want to try red cooking in the pot. It is fun cooking with a method that has been around for so very long.

Clay "Sand" Pot Cooking

I was able to give the old Kitchen God a send off. Every year one is supposed to seal the old one's mouth with sesame paste, then burn the picture to send him back to the other gods so they can confab. The sesame paste is to seal his mouth so he can't rat you out. I've had his picture hanging in my kitchen for years and whether you buy into the Kitchen God or not my cooking has been blessed.

Kitchen God and Family

Celebrated Valentine's Day by heading out to the spa. Mrs. Phos seems impervious to the process, but I am like a wrung out dishrag when they are done. Got home and fell into the best sleep I have had in ages. We're talking total unconsciousness. When I win the lottery I am having a massage every day.

Anyway, happy year of the Tiger to everyone!!!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Long Gone Ray

Lately I have been given to watching documentaries on artists, having an abundance of time on my hands. I saw one to day that was quite sad in the end. It was about Ray Johnson, a contemporary of Warhol's and who was into performance art. The film I saw was entitled “How to Draw a Bunny,” and charted the course of Ray's life right up until the long swim he took, never to return.

I didn't think much of the artwork he did produces, mostly off-beat collage and stylized bunny heads with other artist names on them. He lived in a time when culture was flourishing, the Beats ruled and art was in full bloom. He was fortunate to be part of the scene, but apparently in the end it wasn't enough. He was alone at the end, had chatted on the phone with his friends and colleagues, little did they know he was hinting that the show was about to end. He'd even told one friend he was about to create his greatest work, and wouldn't give any clues.

The it was over. No more drawings of bunnies, or beating cardboard boxes at readings, or anymore Ray Johnson. He lives on to a degree in his work and I guess that is all anyone can hope for.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

There was one

My brother negotiating the treacherous Rocks O' Certain Death" on the way to the falls

For years I have been waiting to see the vaunted White Tank Falls and have finally achieved that goal. It wasn't like climbing Everest, though I did get a couple of "soakers" when my boot slipped off the treacherous rocks and into the pool at the bo0ttom of the falls. My brother blazed the trail to this 9th wonder of the world as I followed doggedly behind - a trek which I paid for the next morning with sore knees. Just wanted all my readers to know what lengths I'll go to, what obstacles I'll surmount, and dangers I'll endure to bring them a good tale.

The Wondrous White Tanks Falls - makes Niagara look like a dwarf pissing over a bridge.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Gone but not forgotten

Had a great time with my brother, miss him already - had to be one of the toughest good byes ever. Had a lot of fun, ate a lot of BBQ, and put the backyard grill through its paces. I suspect Four Peaks brewery stock will take a plunge now that my brother is gone and we aren't buying up every bottle of Kilt lifters and 8th St ale in the far West valley. The whole week was a hoot and we covered all the bases as far as BBQ. We had ribs, brisket, brats, chicken, adn reed beans and rice. Most of it made up on the grill in back, but some from as exotic a location as Stacey's BBQ.

Now I have to think about returning to WI in search of the best cheese burger. stay tuned for more!