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Grilling Season 2014, MRN Woody Cain, #6 BBQ Sauce, Liverpool FC

Hello friends.

The harsh winter has finally broken on the Niagara Frontier and it looks like we might only get a couple more chilly days in Buffalo.  This weekend is gorgeous and next weekend will open the grilling season for Chicken Fried Buffalo.  On Friday, I will be headed to the palatial estate high above Lake Moriane in Hamilton (NY).  It has been five long months since I have used my trusty Weber and Master Forge smoker.

The Weber

The Weber

Of course, I did head south for some spring training last week.  There was an O6 Racing all-day singing and prayer meeting held April 2-7 at Texas Motor Speedway.  It is good to get some of the rust off the wagon before you head into another important grilling season.  The Smoke Master from Matador Ron Cox had the Double-T smoker filled with mesquite and he did some of his best work.  The briskets, pork shoulder, homemade sausage, beer-in-the-butt chicken and the smoker beans were all outstanding.  For the weekend, Ron handles the meat while I work on the accoutrements…that is Canadian for side items.

We have added a new item for future events…Smoked Cajun Maque Choux.   This was a recipe that I posted back in January but I had never made it in a smoker.  It came out pretty good.

Speaking of TMS, I had the opportunity to record a few segments with Ryan Hyatt for That Dang Ol’ Show.  Also, I had the chance to meet the Woody Cain of Motor Racing Network (MRN) and Fast Food.  Woody shares many of the same interests of CFB and he did make it out to the campsite to sample my Flying Pig Sandwich.  I will outline this little bit of pig heaven in a future post.

In fact, the Flying Pig made last week’s Fast Food Podcast on MRN.  Click HERE to listen.  Be sure and follow Woody on Twitter @WYcain.

GRILLING SEASON…2014

There are some essentials that will help you over the next few months.

Make your seasoning blends and rubs up ahead of time.  If you have not already done so, make up a batch of Acadiana Seasoning which works well as an all-purpose seasoning.  Here is an Aussie Seasoning that works well on both steak and chicken wings:

Aussie Dust

  • 4  Tablespoons Kosher Salt
  • 4  Tablespoons Paprika
  • 1  Tablespoon Brown Sugar
  • 1  Tablespoon Mustard Powder
  • 1  Tablespoon Coriander
  • 1  Tablespoon Black Pepper
  • ½  Tablespoon Garlic Powder
  • ½  Tablespoon Onion Powder
  • ½  Tablespoon Thyme Leaves
  • ½  Tablespoon Cayenne Pepper

Combine all ingredients. Store in air-tight container for up to six months.

Everyone has their own preference and taste when it comes to barbecue sauce.  This barbecue sauce recipe does well on just about everything.  Inspired by the sauces available in and around St. Louis like Maull’s, this basic sauce is easy to make and it can be spiced up if that is your style.  Also, Batch #6 BBQ is a good base for making other sauces, like a whiskey sauce.

Also, I actually use the generic or store branded sauces to save a few bucks.  If you have a Trader Joe’s in your area, make sure you pick up some Trader Joe’s South African Smoke Seasoning Blend.  This is an amazing product.  It gives great, natural smoke flavor…I hate liquid smoke…to all foods whether you are smoking, grilling or just want some smoke flavor in anything you make.south-african-smoke450

Batch #6 BBQ Sauce

  • 4         Cups Ketchup
  • 1         10-Ounce Bottle A1 Style Steak Sauce
  • 1         10-Ounce Bottle Heinz 57 Style Sauce
  • 1 ½     Cups Apple Juice or Cider
  • ¼         Cup  Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼         Cup Dark Karo Syrup
  • ¼         Cup  Honey
  • ¼         Cup Molasses
  • 1 ½      Teaspoon Trader Joe’s South African Smoke Seasoning Blend or Liquid Smoke
  • 2          Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
  • 1          Teaspoon Granulated Garlic or Garlic Powder

In large saucepan combine all ingredients and gradually bring to a low simmer over medium heat, whisking to mix.  Reduce heat.  Let cool to room temperature and place in refrigerator. Good for up to three months.

TOP OF THE TABLE

1002760_10201319924230801_2062922950_nLiverpool sits at the top of the Premier League Table after a 3-2 win over Man City at Anfield.  NEVER FORGET THE 96…YNWA. #LFC

CFB ON THE AIR

Every Monday night, That Dang Ol’ Show features a live CFB segment.  If you are in West Texas, you can listen in on the 2013 and 2014 Texas Country Station of the Year, KJDL The Red Dirt Rebel 105.3 FM.  Everyone else can listen live on the internet…just click HERE to be part of radio history.

 

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Christmas Notes and Tips | Dips, Salads, Pies, A&E, Duck Dynasty and Phil Robertson

Greetings from McKinney

My Hometown

A&EDuck DynastyPhil Robertson.

Well, I guess I got your attention.

Fortunately or unfortunately…depending on your point of view…this post from Chicken Fried Buffalo has nothing to do with any of those aforementioned topics.

These musings are about the holidays and the joy that this time of year can bring.

Speaking of joy, let’s talk about Christmas food.  We are only a couple of days away and we need to get prepared.  You might be looking for a last minute idea…well here are a few.

For the first time in 12 years, I will not have to travel by air to a Christmas destination.  No airports, no gummers (I’ll explain them in another post).  I only have to drive a short distance home.

My entire clan from Texas will be making the trip to New York for the holiday.  On one hand, it is a relief but stressful on the other.  Making sure our house is in order.  Do we have everything we need…food, drinks, gifts.

Hopefully, you already have a turkey, ham and your big items…make sure to avoid “big box” stores at all cost the next couple of days.  My last post provided recipes for turkey and ham.  What I wanted to do today was add a few “odds and ends” to help add a couple of Texpatriate twists for your Christmas menu.

Most Christmas get togethers in my family revolve around snack type foods, “grazing” as it is known in Texas…and not big meals.  Over the years, I have adopted and customized a few dishes that are favorites of friends and family alike.

All four of these recipes have their origins in my hometown of McKinney, Texas.

CHEESE DIPS

Ford’s Eight-Cheese Dip

One of the original convenience stores in McKinney was Ford’s Grocery.  Ford’s had an “old school” deli and steam table. During the holidays, Mr. Ford would make this fantastic jalapeño cheese dip.  It was also the place you could get your Skoal and Copenhagen while still under age.  Of course, Ford’s is long gone and he never gave the recipe to anyone outside the family.  This dip is a favorite of my parents and I have been trying to duplicate it for year and here is is my best effort.

Soften cream cheese.  Combine cream cheese and mayonnaise in mixing bowl.  Fold in cheese blends.  Add onion powder, garlic powder and jalapeños.  Mix well.  Place in refrigerator and chill for at least one (1) hour.

NOTE:  For a little Chicago flavor, substitute chopped Italian Giardiniera.  I make my own giardiniera but that recipe is for another time.  Also, you can serve this dip warm.

Gouda Dip

The next dip is one I started making several years ago.  How can anything with bacon and smoked gouda be bad?

  • 3 Slices Bacon

  • 1 8-ounce Cream Cheese

  • 2/3 Cup Mayonnaise

  • 1 Cup Shredded Smoked Gouda

  • 1 Tablespoon ACADIANA SEASONING

Soften cream cheese. In large skillet, fry bacon until crisp and then chop. Combine cream cheese and mayonnaise in mixing bowl.  Mix in smoked gouda.  Add ACADIANA SEASONING, bacon and stir.  Place in refrigerator and chill for at least one (1) hour.

NOTE:  Bacon can be omitted for “non-pig” eaters.

SALAD

Mandarin Spinach Salad

This is one of my mom’s best recipes and it is not just for Christmas.

  • 1 Package Slivered Almonds

  • 3 Chopped Green Onions

  • 1 Can Mandarin Oranges

  • 1 Package Pre-Washed Spinach

     Dressing

  • ½ Cup Sunflower Oil

  • 2 Tablespoon Sugar

  • 2 Tablespoon Malt Vinegar

  • ¼ Teaspoon Salt

  • 1/8 Teaspoon Almond Flavoring

Toast Almonds.  Combine almonds, onions, oranges and spinach in large salad bowl and set aside.  In medium mixing bowl, whisk oil, sugar, vinegar, salt and almond flavoring.  Toss dressing in salad bowl.

PIE

Chocolate Chip Pie

Located in historic downtown, The Pantry is a longtime McKinney favorite.  The recipe below is theirs and was including in a cookbook published over 20 years ago that is no longer available.

  • 2 Eggs

  • ½ Cup Melted Butter

  • 1 Cup Sugar

  • ½ Cup Flour

  • 1 ½ Cup Vanilla

  • 1 Cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

  • 1 Cup Pecan Pieces

  • 1 10-Inch Pie Shell

Beat eggs.  Add six (6) ingredients and mix well.  Let mixture cool for 20 minutes.  Preheat oven at 350.  Pour mixture into pie shell.  Garnish pecans on top of pit.  Bake for 30-40 minutes.

I hope that everyone has a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.  This is a time of year to think of others.  If you have some extra this season, please try and share with folks that are less fortunate.

Thanksgiving: Texas Pecan Pie Recipe

Texas Pecan Pie

Texas Pecan Pie

I hate pumpkin.  Let me say that again…I hate pumpkin.

It is not that I hate the fall, Halloween, harvest time or Thanksgiving.  I like Jack-O-Lanterns.  I like orange and I think that pumpkins are the perfect fall decoration.

What I hate is the flavor of pumpkin and if you are like me, this is an awful time of year with everyone trying to force pumpkin down your throat…so to speak.

Pumpkin pie, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin donuts, toasted pumpkin seeds, pumpkin soup, pumpkin muffins…everywhere I turn there is something pumpkin.

Pumpkins...Yards of Pumpkins

Pumpkins…Yards of Pumpkins

Folks you are scooping the “meat” out of a gourd…yes the pumpkin is a gourd.  A pumpkin is a member of the cucurbit (gourd) family.  It is something to be viewed and admired…not consumed.

Creepy Tim's Employee

Creepy Tim’s Employee

In fact, I had a very traumatic experience in my office a couple of weeks ago.  A member of my staff was kind enough to bring in a variety box of TimBits.  Point of clarification for the people who don’t live near the Canadian border…a TimBit is a donut hole sold by the greatest donut chain on the planet…Tim Horton’s.  This is a Canadian chain started by a legendary hockey player…that’s right, Tim Horton…and the inspiration or Stan Makita’s Donuts from Wayne’s World.

Not paying much attention, I reached in the box to grab a little Tim’s goodness and somehow ended up with a pumpkin TimBit instead of the sour cream glazed I expected.  Of course, I popped it in my mouth like an M&M only to realize when it hit my taste buds that it was pumpkin flavor.  Now committed, I had to chew and swallow.  I can still taste that nastiness as I write today.

Now that you have some background, I can go on with the recipe.

As noted in an earlier post, I will be cooking Thanksgiving Dinner this year for 30 people and there are many pumpkin lovers among the group…my wife included…but I will NOT bake pumpkin pies.  I will buy them.

What I will bake is a Texas Pecan Pie.  To me and many Texpatriates, the pecan pie is not just a Southern dessert but the National Dessert of Texas…just ask Texas Monthly.  The pecan is the state nut of Texas…of course some folks have given that title to Rick Perry.

Rick Perry Eating A Corndog

Rick Perry Eating A Corndog

Also, let’s take just a minute to discuss one of the most mis-pronounced words in the English language…pecan.  Pecan is pronounced PUH-CON…not PEA-CAN.  I thought that I should clear that up for everyone.

There are many different variations on the pecan pie.  You will find bourbon pecan pie in Kentucky and a chocolate-coconut pecan pie in Virginia.  In fact, the Niagara Frontier has a variation that is pretty tasty…a maple-walnut pie.

While I have met few pecan pies that I couldn’t eat, I prefer just the basic pecan pie that both my grandmothers made countless times in their lives.  I have tried to make this pie as close to theirs as possible with one exception.  I cannot make a decent pie crust no matter how hard I try.  I watched them.  I have watched my mother and mother-in-law make these amazing pie crusts.  I have tried every recipe and technique but I still cannot get it right.  Therefore, I use the refrigerated pre-made dough.  While not at the quality of my grandmothers, it’ll work.

This recipe is simple and you can just double or triple the ingredients if you are making multiple pies.

Here are a couple of tips:  Generic or store-brand corn syrup works just fine.  Use real butter and vanilla…I prefer the Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla.  Cover the edges of your pie crust with foil so you don’t overcook your crust.

Texas Pecan Pie

  • 3  Eggs
  • 1  Cup Light Corn Syrup
  • 1  Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/4  Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/3   Cup Melted Butter
  • 1  Teaspoon Real Vanilla
  • 1  Cup Pecans
  • 1  10-Inch Pie Crust/Shell

Step 1: Preheat oven at 350.

Step 2: Beat eggs.  Add five (5) ingredients and beat until foamy.  Fold in pecans.

Step 3: Pour mixture into pie shell.

Step 4: Bake for 40-45 minutes.

Buffalo Dining: Black Rock Kitchen and Bar

Chicken Fried Buffalo

Chicken Fried Buffalo

While this blog is not a restaurant review site, I will on occasion talk about a positive dining experience in Buffalo.

Last week, I attended the Malcolm Gladwell event at SUNY Buffalo with some friends from UB.  At the pre-event reception, our talk turned to great out of the way dining spots in the city and that with me being “new” to the city, I needed to try some of these establishments and write about them for this blog.

The first place on the list that I decided to try was Black Rock Kitchen and Bar.  A good friend of mine is also a friend of BRK&B owner Mark Goldman so we decided to meet for an early dinner to see just how good the place was.

Located at 491 Amherst Street in the Black Rock neighborhood, Black Rock is an area that has a very unique history.  In the early 1800’s Black Rock was an independent town located northwest of Buffalo.  During the War of 1812, Black Rock was twice burned to the ground by British Troops and was later a rival of Buffalo for the terminus of the Erie Canal.  The town flourished until 1839, but was eventually annexed by Buffalo in 1853.  Black Rock was also an important crossing point for the Underground Railroad due to its strategic location on the Niagara River across from Fort Erie, Ontario.

BRK&B is very much like the small neighborhood establishments that are plentiful throughout cities like Chicago.  It has plenty of street parking and also a small parking lot across the street.  Luckily, we decided to eat at 5:30 pm and were able to get a table immediately.  There is normally a wait if you arrive later.

community-beer-works-the-whaleThe wine list is extensive and moderately priced.  As for craft beers, BRK&B does have a limited selection of beers on tap but has an outstanding selection of crafts in bottles.  I decided on the Whale…a fine brown ale..by Buffalo’s own Community Beer Works.

One of the things that I like about places like BRK&B is that they limit their menus to the things they do well then use nightly specials to expand the selections.  When a quaint bistro-style restaurant tries to be all things to all people, it always seems to lose something.

While I decided against an appetizer or salad, I saw an entrée that immediately caught my attention…BBQ babyback ribs with sides of slaw and baked mac and cheese.  It did take me minute to decide on the ribs instead of the buttermilk fried chicken but the yardbird can wait until my next visit.

I am not a person that gets all caught up on food presentation.  I want the food to taste good but I will admit that the presentation of the meal was beautiful.BRKB Ribs

Let me start with the sides.  The mac and cheese was baked and served in a crock.  I am a connoisseur of mac and cheese and I would rank this as my favorite in Buffalo…so far.  The slaw was good but not great.  As I noted in an earlier post, I like slaw a little different than most people.

Unlike other Texpatirates, I believe that you can have good babyback ribs without having to smoke them.  While I do prefer a little smoke curled around ribs, I have had very good ribs that were done in the oven and finished on the grill.  BRK&B’s ribs were of this variety and were excellent.  The flavor was outstanding and the meat fell off the bone.  The sauce was good but when I have them again I will get the sauce on the side.

cityontheedgeDuring the meal, I was introduced to Mark and we had a lively discussion about everything from Buffalo dining to the future of higher education in America.  A true proponent of the city, Mark wrote “City On the Edge”  a book detailing the history of Buffalo from 1900 to the present.

In addition, Mark also owns another restaurant…Allen Street Hardware…which is also on my list.

Overall, I was very impressed with my first trip to BRK&B. Both David and his staff pay attention to the details and that helps with the overall experience.  The food was very good, portions were generous and the prices moderate.

I will be back and the buttermilk fried chicken with mashed potatoes has my name on it.

NEXT UP:  More Thanksgiving recipes.

Thanksgiving: Southern Cornbread Dressing Recipe

Chicken Fried Buffalo

Chicken Fried Buffalo

First, I would like to apologize for not posting anything last week.  Unfortunately, sometimes work, family and life in general get in the way of the fun things we want to do.  When I started this little project, my goal was to post at least one story or recipe per week.  Hopefully, I will make it up this week.

Well, Thanksgiving is just around the corner and like many Texpatriates, I will not have the opportunity to head home for the holiday.  In the years that I have been unable to spend time with family, my goal has always been to cook for others that are in the same situation.  Many of those years. I have had the opportunity to provide a home cooked Thanksgiving meal for either some or all of my wife’s basketball team.

CookedTurkey3I will be cooking for her team and staff again this year before our long road trip to the Pacific Northwest.  We are planning for 25-30 at our house since we will also invite others who cannot be with their families.

When you are cooking for that many and they are from all over the country, you should take into consideration that there is diversity…and that is not an old, old wooden ship used during the Civil War era…in the dishes and traditions served in different regions.

Of course, you should have turkey in some form (smoked, fried, roasted, etc.) but everything else is up to local interpretation.  Cajun Fried Turkey is my personal favorite but using this method to cook the bird must be done by people who know what they are doing.

There are certain things that Nicci has asked for…egg noodles and mashed potatoes…and I will make those of course but I will also try and provide some regional favorites.

Channel 4 News Team

Channel 4 News Team

With that being said, there will definitely be a Southern flavor to several of the dishes.  I plan on adding a ham with Dr Pepper glaze and at least one pecan pie but I am in New York and when in Rome…yes go on.

Nothing says Thanksgiving in Texas or the South like cornbread dressing.  Let me make this very clear:  Southern cornbread dressing is not stuffing.  This is not Stove Top Stuffing out of a box.  This is old school, homemade dressing.  This recipe has been handed down in my family.  In fact, I make the cornbread for this dressing in a cast iron skillet given to me by grandmother that was old when she started cooking with it.

While I always try to provide recipes that are fairly easy and not labor intensive in this blog, I warn you up front that this is not one of them.  There are several steps and it does takes time and effort but is well worth it.  I have updated the recipe a little to use cornbread mix..do not use Jiffy…and split chicken breasts instead of a whole chicken.  Jiffy contains too much sugar.  I use Morrison’s Corn Kits if you can find them and by using the chicken breasts you end up with extra white meat that can use for other dishes or frozen for later use.

Morrison's Corn Kits

Morrison’s Corn Kits

This recipe makes enough dressing for the entire news team but you can cut the recipe in half.  Also, you can use your own homemade cornbread or biscuit recipe if you are so inclined.

Southern Cornbread Dressing

  • 2 Packages Southern Cornbread Mix
  • 6 Split Chicken Breasts
  • 10 Saltine Crackers
  • 5 Cooked Southern Style Biscuits
  • 1 Teaspoon Sage
  • 1 Teaspoon Pepper
  • ½ Teaspoon Accent
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Medium Chopped Onion
  • 4 Eggs
  • ¼ Cup Condensed Milk

Prepare cornbread per package instructions. In large pot of boiling water, place six (6) chicken breasts. Boil for approximately 45 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken breasts and save broth.

In large mixing bowl, crumble cornbread. Combine crackers and biscuits in food processor. Combine cornbread, crackers and biscuits. Mix well.

Spray large roasting pan with spray oil.

Add onion and eggs to cornbread mixture. Pour mixture into roasting pan. Now pour hot broth into roasting pan. Add condensed milk. Stir.

Bake 325 for 45 minutes.

Ranger Chili and Texas Frito Pie

Texas Ranger Badge

Texas Ranger Badge

Well, we made it to fall and the weather is definitely turning colder.

Growing up in North Texas, fall means football and chili.  My family always celebrated the first norther…that means “cold front” to non-Texans…by making a a big pot of chili.  Now, I am talking about Texas Chili or Texas Red as others call it.  This is real chili and does not include beans.  Let me repeat that…real chili does not have beans.  When you add beans to chili, it makes the dish soup…period.  I like a good soup mind you but Texas Chili is all meat.

One of the goals of this site is to provide easy recipes that become building blocks for more complex dishes.  As you will see, the Ranger Chili recipe below uses Texican Hot Sauce as a base ingredient and that recipe was in a previous Chicken Fried Buffalo post.  There are many good chili recipes but some just really require to much work.  This is very easy and is ready to serve in an hour.  Having made this chili for many years, I have locked down on specific spices…some I import from Texas like San Antonio Chili Powder from Central Market or Ghirardelli’s Unsweetened Cocoa Powder…but it works just as well with inexpensive store-brand items.  As for the beer, a nice lager works fine.

I get the question about using chocolate quite a bit.  Chocolate is used in mole and is a perfect flavor compliment to ground chilies.

Also, you can half this recipe if you don’t need as much chili or it can be doubled if you are feeding a big crowd.

RANGER CHILI

  • 2        Pounds Ground Meat
  • 32      Ounces TEXICAN HOT SAUCE
  • 2        TB Chili Powder
  • 2        TB Ground Cumin
  • 1        TB Black Pepper
  • 1        TB Sugar
  • 1        TB Chocolate Powder
  • ½       TB Salt
  • 12     Ounces Beer

In large pot, brown meat.  Drain fat.  Add Texican Hot Sauce and remaining ingredients.  Bring to boil.  Reduce heat and simmer on low for one (1) hour.

Once you have your Ranger Chili made, I suggest that you serve it as Texas Frito Pie.  First of all, it is not really a pie but this Texas favorite is served at just about every high school football game concession stand in the state.  It is simple and quite tasty.  Recently, food bad boy Anthony Bourdain got himself in a little trouble talking about Frito Pie.

TEXAS FRITO PIE

  • 4       Cups Original Fritos® or generic corn chips
  • 4       Cups Ranger Chili
  • 1       Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/4   Cup Chopped Onion

Spoon the Ranger Chili over the corn chips.  Then top with cheese and onion.  Serve immediately,

I hope that you enjoy the Ranger Chili and Texas Frito Chili Pie.

Lagniappe (10.27.2013)

What is lagniappe?

noun…Chiefly Southern Louisiana and Mississippi

  1. A small gift presented by a storeowner to a customer with the customer’s purchase.
  2. An extra or unexpected gift or benefit.

Lagniappe derives from New World Spanish la ñapa, “the gift,” and ultimately from Quechua yapay, “to give more.”  The word came into the rich Creole dialect mixture of New Orleans and there acquired a French spelling.  It is still used in the Gulf states, especially South Louisiana, to denote a little bonus that a friendly shopkeeper might add to a purchase…”an extra or unexpected gift or benefit.”

Each week, my goal is to post a Lagnaippe on Chicken Fried Buffalo.  Just scattershooting about different topics and whatever crops up in the old skull…giving folks a little something extra.

Ron Cox and O6 Racing

Owens

Not Ron Cox

First, I would like to thank Ron Cox for his recent posts. Ron is fantastic tailgate chef and I was really glad when he decided to become part of O6 Racing.  It is great to have another cook in the group and the two of us have developed a fine partnership.  We each have things to focus on and can stay out of each others’ way…which is rare when you get two cooks in the same kitchen so to speak.

We have been called the “Castro Brothers” by some members of our group because we plan the menus and do the cooking without a lot of input from others.  These are the same slaps that also complain about the food being bland or that continually throw around sarcastic comments.  The amazing thing is that none of them ever lift so much as a spoon to help.  Those “people” do not include Travis Lee Seibrass, Jim Ryan and Ben “The King” Walters who are always ready to help with the prep work.

Buffalo BBQ — Fat Bob’s Smokehouse

A friend recommended a local BBQ joint called Fat Bob’s Smokehouse in downtown Buffalo. Now as anyone who has already reads this blog knows, I am a Texpatriate and someone who loves smoked meats.  Also, I like all styles of BBQ…from Carolina moving west. Unlike the views of some folks who have been mentioned earlier in this post, BBQ is not just beef.Fat Bob's Smokehouse

I decided to stop by Fat Bob’s for lunch last week.  Immediately, I liked the place.  It is located off the beaten path on a one-block, one-way street (41 Virginia Place) in the Allentown neighborhood.  Fat Bob’s has very good bar with plenty of crafts on tap, domestic specials and several big flat screens.

FB’s has gotten plenty of good reviews over the years so I knew that I would definitely be able to find a few things I would like on the menu.  There are several Cajun-influenced items but I decided on the chopped brisket sandwich with sides of onion rings and slaw. The portion size for the rings and slaw was generous and both were very good.  The rings were not the normal frozen, battered variety but were house made.  I prefer a sweeter style slaw and FB’s hit the mark for me.

As for the brisket sandwich, it was of modest size.  The bun was toasted and the brisket did have a good flavor but was a little dry…which is not uncommon.  I was very impressed with the selection of FB’s four different sauces.  Since WNY is outside of BBQ country, FB’s has provided a sauce that hits a few of the country’s BBQ regions.  I preferred the Low and Slow sauce which is more of a St. Louis-Style red sauce. The choices are the original, Low and Slow, Kansas City and “AK” Spicy.

Overall, my experience was good I will be back…for Happy Hour and to try the pork.  Also, FB’s is know for its mac and cheese and I well get some of that as well on my next trip.

Final Countdown

(10)  I would like to know who the genius was that invented the “mini” corndog.  America is in debt to that visionary.

Tickle

Tickle from Moonshiners

(9)    Very happy that a new season of Moonshiners starts next week (November 5 on Discovery Channel).

(8)    Is Trace Adkins the new Sam Elliott when it comes to voice over work?  I think so.

(7)    It always makes for a bad NFL viewing experience when you are sitting next to degenerate NFL gamblers at the bar.

(6)    Since I am in Buffalo and the Bills are the game with with sound, I don’t have to listen to Dick Stockton on the Cowboy-Lions game.

(5)    If the Giants have to win a game, please let while against the Eagles or (Insert Politically Correct Mascot for the Washington franchise).  NOTE:  They did beat the Eagles…more on that later.

London Jaguars

(4)    I think it is socially acceptable to bring your own seasoning to restaurant if you thinks the establishment’s food might need the help.

(3)    Let London have the Jaquars…maybe it will bring relegation to the NFL.  The only problem is…does London want the Jags?

(2)    I would much rather sit at a bar and watch football with a welder than a stockbroker or doctor.

(1)    Glad to see that Chip Kelly is revolutionizing the NFL with his high-powered Oregon offensive scheme…zero offensive touchdowns in the last eight quarters.  Hey Chip…you are not playing in Pullman and Corvallis anymore.

Well that’s it for today.  Let’s be careful out there.

Acadiana All-Purpose Seasoning

red-fleur-de-lis-mdFirst, I would like to thank Ron Cox for posting his aunt’s slaw recipe last week.  While some of his comments about the founder of this blog were slightly inaccurate, I appreciate the effort on his part.

One of the things I wanted to do with this blog was provide people with some simple recipes that can be used in various ways.  The recipe I am posting today is one of the first things I developed when I started cooking.

My first full-time job out of school just happened to be in New Orleans.  Now for the those that do not know, Cajun cooking and the real cuisine of New Orleans are different.  If you want the best Cajun food, you need to head west on I-10 to Lafayette or southwest to Thibodaux…the heart of Acadiana.

Acadiana is the official name given to the 22 parishes in Louisiana that are home to the Cajun Culture.  During the 18th Century, French exiles from Canada’s Maritime Provinces moved to the region giving Acadiana its unique characteristics.

Most people have seen Louisiana products like Zatarain’s and Tony Chachere’s in their local grocery stores.  These are just two of the many Cajun or Creole brands available.

When you look at the these commercial seasoning blends, you will see how many of them contain MSG (monosodium glutamate) and to much salt.  I decided to come up with my own Louisiana seasoning blend recipe.

The recipe below can be made completely organic.  You will also find that it works as a great all-purpose seasoning, is a must-have for those tailgate Bloody Marys and will add that extra kick to any Buffalo food.

  • 8          Ounces                         Ground Black Pepper
  • 6          Ounces                         Kosher Salt
  • 4          Ounces                         Garlic Powder
  • 3          Ounces                         Onion Powder
  • 2          Ounces                         White Pepper
  • 2          Ounces                         Cayenne Pepper
  • 2          Ounces                         Brown Sugar
  • 2          Ounces                         Paprika
  • 2          Ounces                         Oregano
  • 1          Ounce                           Parsley
  • 1          Ounce                           Chili Powder
  • 1          Ounce                           Dry Mustard

Combine all ingredients. Store in air-tight container for up to six months.

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