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  • Our picks

    • Stuffed peppers.  Ate better than they look.

    • We finally found weather nice enough to make cooking outside pleasant, and set up the camp stove for the event.  Way back in Alabama, an excellent grocery store meat clerk convinced us that - despite our small shopping list and still-full refrigerator - we needed to check out some of the local products.  We had come away with 2 types of sausage, both made within 50 miles of our location, and a bottle of "Southern Seasoning" that she assured us carried the flavor of true Alabama-style barbecue.  



      I can't say we've been excited about the seasoning blend, but the sausage has been good.  The DeRamus sausage is long gone.  Now we opened the Conecuh to make hash out on the camp stove. There isn't anything elegant about this meal, but it's good camping comfort food.




      By the light of the lantern we sipped our beer, enjoyed the clear skies, and gave the pan contents an occasional turn:



      Those of you who followed along last year may remember that DH never thought the potatoes crisp enough; the eGullet consensus here seemed to be that the pan was too crowded to get proper crisping.  We've had a running disagreement since then about how many potatoes and onions to cook for two people: he wants the pan filled to capacity, to maximize leftovers; I want enough space to be able to spread and turn the contents.  I won this time.



      He complained that there wasn't enough, but the texture was just right.


    • Char siu (Xa xiu in vietnamese) is a standard filling for bahn mi at my favorite BM joint, which happens to be a bakery suppling rolls to most of the Viet restaurants around the area (as well as to white-tablecloth places). Here is the BM menu from Dong Phuong, where you can buy 10 sandwiches and get one free: http://www.dpbanhmi....ry/Banh_Mi.html
      I usually go for the #1 Dac Biet (house special), which is overflowing with housemade rolled ham, pate, and other porky goodness.
      I have tried, many times, with NO success, to make a BM roll as light & airy as what I can purchase at many Viet bakeries in SE Louisiana. I think that the feathery light rolls have some dough conditioners and require a steam-injected oven to get the "right" texture. I can attest that rice flour does nothing for the texture.
      When making 'em at home, I usually fill with ga nuong (grilled boneless chix thighs), and I use Andrea Nguyen's recipe (lime juice, fish sauce, a little sugar, black pepper, and oil). Or, I buy red-cooked boneless pork from the asian supermarket & use it (pictured below).
    • If ever you are in Whitby you are in luck for several fish and chip places, also local kippers:
      Whitby is a wonderful place to visit just on its merits, on the sea and locally caught fish.
      The Magpie Cafe is where I would head for.
    • This declaration right here made my husband a very happy man last night.  This is one of his favorite things to eat.  It would have never crossed my mind that chicken fried venison steak would be considered a schnitzel.  But, it is pounded and breaded and fried so it fits right in  .
      Venison loin (backstrap)

      Soaked in a mixture of one beaten egg and buttermilk for about 30 mins or so

      I throw flour, Lawry's salt, garlic and a lot of black pepper in a large ziplock and use that to coat the steaks and make gravy.

      I got a little excited over the gravy and took too many pictures.
      Chicken skin from a breast I used the night before for dinner

      All crisped up--I like my gravy to have some of this in there...

      Flour added

      Then a lot of milk

      Stir stir stir

      More salt, pepper and garlic

      The best dang cream gravy

      Mashed taters

      Dredge the steaks in the flour mixture and fry 'em up

      Ronnie's plate-he likes gravy on his steak

      I prefer it on the taters and then I dip a piece of steak in once in a while