mytopleft

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Drunken Independence Day food porn

I can't lie, Independence Day got pretty good at the Chez Wolves. Much good food was consumed, as was a butt-load of alcohol. We had good company, with Lance Corporal Wolves, his fiance, Aunt Wolves, Nephew Wolves, Friend of Nephew Wolves and friends of the family. Good crowd, and some folks seem to have been around and celebrating until the very wee hours. It must have been early when we quit, because it really couldn't get later.

In any event, I hope all of you marked Independence Day in appropriate fashion. I would like to point out that it is Independence Day, not merely July 4th. July 4th is a date. Independence Day is an event, a commemoration.

This is when a bunch of guys put their lives on the line, signing a document that could get them killed, to let the world know that all men are born entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We sure as hell weren't there then, we aren't quite there yet, but we are the only nation in the world even pretending to try to get there. So if you are one of the lefties in the blame America first crowd who thinks we're a rotten country, refer to the name of the blog. 

But no, you're here for food porn. I know, because that is the title of the post. So draw near, children, and get ready to indulge..

First of all, Independence Day, we do baked beans. You start with a one-pound bag of great northern beans, or maybe navy beans if you like them smaller. Put them in a soup pot:



Cover the beans with about 2 inches of water (hard to tell, but trust me):


Soak that stuff overnight. Seriously, 24 hours. Once you have soaked your beans, drain the beans, reserving the water in which they soaked (note the measuring cups full of murky water). Put the beans in a 4-quart casserole dish.

 Cut up a big ol' Vidalia onion. Two, if you like. you can't put too much onion in this bad boy.


You will then need the following ingredaments: molasses, brown sugar, dijon mustrard (or honey mustard). ketchup, ground mustard and worstershire sauce. Put 1/3 cup of brown sugar and 1/3 cup of molasses in the beans; add one tablespoon of ground mustard, then toss in the worcestershire, ketchup, and dijon mustard as you see fit. This is an eyeball kind of thing. Not too much, please.

Next, grab about a half-pound of bacon ends and pieces (usually available at a decent grocery story) or salt pork. If neither is available, you probably live among Yankees and will have to substitute a hal-pound of bacon. Regardless, chop it up and toss it in:


Add 3 cups of the water you saved from soaking the beans. Cover the mix, put the casserole dish on a cookie pan and bake at 250 degrees for at least 8 hours. My batch this year took more like 16 hours. After 8 hours, though, test the beans (eat a couple, you moron) to make sure they are no longer crunchy. Add more water if necessary and continue cooking until they have reached a consistency you like.


OK, so you're spent two days cooking baked beans. (Yes, you did, or you did it wrong.) So what else did you have for Independence Day? You might have boiled some ribs:


Then you smoke those bad boys over hickory:


OK, no shit, people are getting hungry while you cook those ribs. Maybe you should put out a veggie tray:


Yeah, folks got to it pretty good before I got there with the camera. And I never did get a picture of  the cheese-and-crackers tray. But there was one. Anyway, those ribs.  So you cook them over hickory for a while:


While you were waiting for the ribs, you might have fixed some wings. I did. I did two groups, teriyaki and mild buffalo sauce. Once they were almost gone, I remembered to take a picture:

Of what was left, I mean.

Any way, those ribs are still working. You cook them over indirect heat for a couple hours to make them tender. Ideally, you put them on the unheated side of a gas grill, but you can put them in the oven at very low heat. but they need to cook longer to get tender. Ultimately, they will look like this:

 That is, of course, if you use King's No. 2 Sauce from King's Barbecue in Petersburg, Va. Order from www.kingsfamousbarbecue.com. It's really good shit.

You also grilled hamburgers and hotdogs, you made a salad. You made potato salad. You were too busy and too drunk to take pictures of everything, but you tried:


A good plate looked like this, even though the rat bastard ignored my potato salad:


Seriously, the food was great, the company was great, and the country we celebrated is still great, despite the best efforts of the current administration. I hope I can say the same next Independence Day. Bon apetit, and good luck with your baked beans on Labor Day weekend.

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