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Monday, November 21, 2016

Stir up some happy!

Love in a Pot

Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all.”
Harriet Van Horne

If you, like me, are not thinking about turkey and dressing for Thanksgiving, and instead want to cook something on the grill—in my case, port tenderloins—then I have a recipe for you. But first, the back story: Back in the 1960's my former husband went to Washington and Lee University in Virginia, and majored in chemistry. There he had a professor, Dr. James Keith Shillington, who believed that one of the most important applications of chemistry was to be found in the kitchen. Each year, Dr. Shillington selected a cadre of students, I suspect the number had to do with how many fit around his dining table, and once a month, invited them to his home for a cooking lesson. Together, they prepared a meal, complete with desserts and appropriate wines. At the end of the year, they had amassed a cookbook of recipes to carry into life, and had acquired some skill in the kitchen. The recipe I have for Dr. Shillington's Barbeque Sauce, is so stained it's barely readable. It can be used as a marinade, or simply brushed on the meat while cooking,

¼ cup butter, melted
½ cup peanut oil (for those with peanut allergy, use vegetable oil)
½ cup red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. Kraft hot barbeque sauce
1 clove garlic
1 ½ Tbsp. Worchestershire Sauce
1/3 cup lemon juice (2 lemons)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp grated lemon rind
½ tsp black pepper
¾ tsp (or to taste) red pepper flakes

And, finally, if your relatives are sticking around for the weekend, and you want to use up some of those leftovers, here's an easy one from my sister, Jerrie's, massive trove of recipes. I have fond memories of eating this at her house long ago. She called it Dutch Oven Chicken, but you could also make it in a slow cooker. It ends up being a layered stew.

5-6 strips of bacon on the bottom (or left over ham, or Canadian bacon)
layer of chicken (or turkey)
layer of sliced potatoes
layer of sliced carrots
layer of sliced onions
layer of bell pepper rings
layer of tomatoes (large can w/ juice poured over the top)
3-4 bay leaves (I would add garlic somewhere in there)
Salt and pepper each layer, cover and cook slowly for several hours.

I could go on and on with the recipes, but I'm sure you have your own traditions. My friend, Andy, who's grandparents came from Germany and settled in the Chicago area, makes barley grits every year, which are sweet and spicy, and served spread on German brown bread. Of course, they require the quaffing of large quantities of dark beer. Remember and acknowledge, as you are enjoying your Thanksgiving feast, the people who came before you, who perhaps are now gone from this earth. They made you who you are, and still guide you along the way.

                                                           In the Spirit,


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