Archived entries for barbecue

Calico Jack’s Anti-Scurvy Kit: Coconut Citrus Chicken

**UPDATE: We have just been informed that the Sexcamaids won the Judges’ Choice award at the 2010 Coney Island Mermaid Parade. And this here little bribe got a special shout-out on the boards! Go team!**

Before we progress any further, it has come to my attention that I should probably explain a little more about our judges’ bribe. On the surface, it sounds pretty simple–we basically packed them the most righteous picnic a sun-soaked judge could ever hope to receive. But were we content to merely shower them with delicious foodstuffs? No. Heavens, no. You’re talking to a graphic designer; it’s not a project until I’ve wrapped it up in customized, hand designed packaging and involved at least three artists.

Plus, I am tremendously spoilt in having some wonderful talents in my network, so when I got this ridiculous bee in my bonnet, I was able to put out the feelers and make this crazy thing match the picture in my head. Which is how we ended up with the pirate feast, a picnic presented in a treasure chest (courtesy of Bench), with the foodstuffs packaged in bespoke, branded tins, all named after famous pirates. The effect we were going for was “hey, I went shopping at the pirate supermarket!” We had branded hard tack! Swill! Ship’s biscuits! And my personal favorite, Calico Jack’s Anti-Scurvy Kit.

The anti-scurvy kit was my favorite for two reasons, the first being the absolutely boss design work that Lady G did for it. Check it:


The second reason is that it was the biggest challenge for me–you would not believe what I went through trying to figure out what would actually go IN the anti-scurvy kit. It had to be a savory, it had to be able to stand up to an undisclosed number of hours in a cooler (on an extremely hot day), and it had to have some sort of citrus element. It was a more difficult decision than I’d anticipated, but one that I’m extremely happy with–the coconut milk imbued the chicken with a creamy tenderness, while the mixed citrus zest kept things interesting; the lime-basil dipping glaze woke up all the flavors and really brought everything together. It kept beautifully in the cooler.


But best of all? It was super easy, incredibly delicious, and tasted AMAZING when grilled over open coals. Highly recommended for a picnic in a park or on the high seas.

Continue reading…

Sweet and Hot: Mango-Tomatillo Salsa for Summer

I hesitated before posting this one, wondering how many salsa recipes one person really requires. Deborah Schneider’s salsa verde with tomatillos and avocado is worth its weight in gold, and I’m a big fan of Alton Brown’s simple tomato version, too. Before the weather got hot, I made one with black beans and oranges, too, but here we are, in June (June!) and those are not enough.

You need this sweet/hot mango salsa for piling on chips (a slick of guacamole underneath is encouraged) and spooning onto grilled chicken. You need it for cumin-rubbed pork chops and for hunks of halibut and skewers of marmalade-basted shrimp. I’d try it on chicken sausages, too, and tossed in a taco salad. It’s seriously good: refreshing, spicy and juicy; the perfect partner for a citrusy IPA or a light-bodied summer ale.

This summer is going to be a busy one for us–it seems like everyone we know is getting married, and Matt has to (start and) finish his dissertation before fall. I’m trying to remind myself that summer is a state of mind, and a big bowl of this salsa brings me right there. I’m looking forward to a few stolen moments of vacation: grilling and laughing while the sun sets on our balcony, bopping around beer festivals in Philly and on Governor’s Island, a lazy day at the beach when I can grab it. It’s better to not spend all summer concentrating on looking forward, anyway. I’d rather just savor it a little slower.

What recipes put you in a summer mood?

Continue reading…

Secrets and victories: Tangy Barbecue Baked Beans

I think I’ve done it. I’ve figured out the purpose of pomegranate molasses, at least within the context of my life. It’s amazing, and so simple. It’s a secret weapon, the kicker in–

Wait. I’m getting ahead of myself. Let us begin the story properly.

Barbecue baked beans

Once upon a summer, you may recall that I had the good fortune to spend a sunny saturday in Central Park with a small phalanx of fellow food bloggers. You may also recall that our spread was, unsurprisingly, entirely awesome. Of particular note (to me, anyway) was a tray of baked beans–piquant, tangy, smoky, baked beans. Beans that have haunted me ever since, because the man responsible would rather not divulge his secret recipe! Which, you know. I understand. But it has not stopped me from trying to crack the code myself!

And so, I researched, I tested, I poked and prodded and finally –FINALLY–came up with a recipe that is, if not the twin to the mysterious beans of the potluck, a reasonable substitute (not facsimile, but substitute). Tangy! Smoky! Sweet! It’s like barbecue in a bowl! And the secret ingredient?

Continue reading…

Black and blue for you: Black and blue pie

I do enjoy holiday weekends. It’s not so much the extra days off (which, if we’re honest, don’t mean much to me now that I’m without a day job); it’s more about the infectious spirit that rolls in the streets. The general feeling of reckless abandon and awesome indulgence, of giddiness, of getting together with your friends and making mischief. Of miscellaneous backyard explosions and the very real concern that someone’s house is going to be set alight before the evening’s end. For my money there’s not much better–hence, my love of the 4th of July. While it will never replace Thanksgiving in my affections, it’s trying pretty bloody hard.

Black and blue pie

This year’s festivities were held at the home of my wonderful friends, M&A (I may have mentioned them before; they have pet chinchillas and the most prodigious collection of games this side of the Mississippi. They are two of my very favorite people in the history of ever). They are renowned for throwing kick-ass barbecues; so kick-ass, that it became a moral imperative to hitch my star to that wagon and contribute. After much hemming and hawing, I decided to bring two things: my infamous pulled pork (which was initially supposed to be smoked over the grill, but…no. Didn’t quite work out that way, though it was still delicious and all seven pounds got eaten in about six minutes by ravenous guests) and a new experiment–a black and blue pie.


Continue reading…

BBBBBBBBQ: Maple bourbon barbecue sauce

New York is not, I frequently have to remind myself, merely a collection of myriad noises and annoyances (and machetes, but that’s another story); it is also kind of a dreamland–a city with an undeniable personality, where there is always something amazing happening (example: David Byrne is playing an outdoor concert at the bandshell three blocks from my house RIGHT NOW), where anything could happen at any time, and frequently does. It is also, however, a land where outdoor space is at such a premium that there are certain areas where people will totally cut you to get at one of the Parks and Rec grills in the park.

Maple bourbon barbecue chicken

I will not say which areas, but I will say that I have contemplated becoming one of those people.

Ah, yes, the urbanite’s lament: where will I sun? Where will I grow plants? Where will I grill slabs of meat? I find the last question particularly troubling, as there are few things I like to eat more than, oh, anything that has been cooked over an open fire. I feel this loss in my life more keenly at some times than others; when the missing hits, I do my best to bring the barbecue indoors. Sometimes, that means nothing more complicated than baking up some chicken swimming in barbecue sauce. Sometimes, that means being late for Mermaid practice because I’m making the barbecue sauce from scratch.

Maple bourbon barbecue sauce

Continue reading…

Copyright © 2008–2009. All rights reserved.

RSS Feed. This blog is proudly powered by Wordpress and uses Modern Clix, a theme by Rodrigo Galindez.