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Lan4Dawg

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About Lan4Dawg

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    Larry Town in GA

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  1. Denver & Boulder are pretty well covered but there is not a lot of mention of any of the other cities (Manitou Springs, Grand Junction, Grand Lake) that I can find--at least recent mentions--so any help is appreciated. Regional is preferred and usually dinner but not real picky as long as it is good and good value and e-gullet mention worthy. We will be driving (all over the state!) so no car issues but prefer some thing as close to the "main drag" as possible (my GPS consists of Fuss w/a map). As important is a suggestion for a good liquor store on our way fr/ the air port in Denver to Manitou Springs and in Boulder.
  2. Atlanta restaurant changes

    Repast is closing as Joe Truex is heading to Watershed in Decatur. Apparently it was too much to keep it going but I do not know the whole story. Today's AJC had a story on Joel's closing and Rexall's up in Duluth has temporarily closed b/c of failure to pay taxes. Rexall's is going to re-open in the next couple of weeks but you will have to get your drug store counter food fix else where for the time being.
  3. Is the "House of Prayer" still open and serving (& still any good?) That would be a good choice for "soul food".
  4. If you enjoyed SmokeHouse Ham, Spoon Bread, and Scuppernong Wine then you will definitely like The Food, Folklore, and Art of LowCountry Cooking. As the title suggests this does the same for the area fr/ middle SoCar to north Fla as SmokeHouse did in the Appalachian region. It is a similar format w/ a lot of inter-views and discussions w/ not only chefs, cooks, and those in the food business but also writers, historians, &c who know the region and help explain about the food and why the food is. The book is also chock full of receipts that are typical of the area. The list of contributors reads like a "who's who" of low-country cuisine--the Lee Brothers, Louis Osteen, Marvin Woods, Robert Carter, Joe Randall, et al--but also includes people like Dan Carter, Ben Moise, Franklin Small who are not as well known but are a part of the food and culture of the region. Joe will be at the Margaret Mitchell House for a discussion, Q&A, book signing on 30th June. Fuss & I plan to be there so look for us.
  5. as for Georgia: Old Clinton in Clinton, GA and Fresh Air in Flovilla are considered the two "best" in the state (arguably). There is also a Lexington, GA which has a quirky barbecue joint that is supposedly very, very good but the name of which escapes me. There are a bunch of places in 'bama and Mississippi but I am not particularly familiar w/ them.
  6. Seasoning Grits

    You say polenta/I say grits. I always use stock in my grits simply b/c I think it adds to the flavor (along w/ hot sauce, salt, pepper, & some times cheese). Grits are usually a coarser grind than polenta but what ever you put in to them does not change the fact that they are grits. If you cook rice in stock it is still rice so why should grits be any different? I agree, Lan4Dawg. I almost never use plain water to cook anything when I can use (or at least add) stock or white wine or OJ or some other flavorful liquid instead. For grits it's vegetable stock. Why not? I've never had any complaints! And I never have gotten the distinction between grits and polenta. In fact, I've often served "polenta" to guests who would never in a million years touch grits. Yes, I'm devious that way. back when I was doing some catering I had some one ask me the difference between grits and polenta. I responded, "oh, about $1.50 per person". ":^)
  7. Harissa source

    Have you tried Gwinnett International Farmer's Market over on Shackleford (between Pleasant Hill and Steve Reynolds near 85)? They also have stores in Cobb and in Lilburn. I am pretty certain I saw some there just a couple of days ago. I also remember seeing some at the Hallel Meat Market at Singleton and JCB (the same shopping center as Aldi--on the left coming fr/ 85). I would imagine SuperH and Buford Hwy Market have it as well but can not vouch as I have not looked in either of those places.
  8. Seasoning Grits

    You say polenta/I say grits. I always use stock in my grits simply b/c I think it adds to the flavor (along w/ hot sauce, salt, pepper, & some times cheese). Grits are usually a coarser grind than polenta but what ever you put in to them does not change the fact that they are grits. If you cook rice in stock it is still rice so why should grits be any different?
  9. The Great Freezer Cleanout: 2010

    thx a lot folks! Fuss & I were talking at dinner the other night and some thing about E-gullet arose in the conversation. I mentioned that we were having a discussion about cleaning out the freezer and was told, "ya know......our freezer could probably use some work" which--if you live w/ those of the female persuasion you already realize--means, "I expect you to have the freezer cleaned by the time I get home tomorrow and I can not believe you have let it go this long ya big dummy!". Any how it was a good day for it yesterday as it was chilly and the garage was only in the 40's so I pulled every thing out, chipped out any ice build up on the sides, cleaned what ever detritus had accumulated at the bottom--including the half bag of peas that busted about six months ago--and re-organized. I decided to use those plastic buckets (I know they will eventually crack in the freezer but they work for now) in which we get cat litter, laundry detergent, &c (having nine cats we have plenty of those buckets around) and rinsed them well and then divided so that two buckets are full of pork, two are full of beef and two w/ chicken products (arranged FIFO). One of the racks has stocks, another has assorted stuff--butter, cream cheese, bread for the ducks, &c, another is full of vegetables, and yet another has pre-made soups, casseroles, smoked pork, &c and there was room for ice jugs at the bottom. All in all it was highly successful and I found some things I did not even realize were there and, luckily, no casualties as nothing was "uh.....what is this?" or "criminies! how long has this been in here?" and, sorry Sparrowgrass, no squirrel. I did have lots of help fr/ two of the cats--Pumpkin and Sweetie Pie--who were very curious about every thing that came out and kept hoping some thing was for them.
  10. Coffee or Not?

    Definitely go w/ coffee--especially at a brunch. If an older crowd many are going to drink coffee period and if there is a bar at all then some are going to want coffee before they leave. And, as said, some will want coffee w/ cake. When at the restaurant I would do a coffee bar w/ samovars of regular and decaffeinated, whipped cream, cinnamon sticks, rock candy sticks (as Celeste mentioned you can get them in artificial sweeteners now) as well as some flavored syrups--or instead of flavored syrups you can flavor whipped cream (just label to avoid any confusion). We made an ice block w/ holes sized for the cream bowls to keep it chilled. Coffee bars are a big hit and can actually add to your profit margin.
  11. The Great Freezer Cleanout: 2010

    when you are finished w/ yours would you mind coming and taking care of my freezer? I was told the other day--after Fuss & I arranged and re-arranged the chest freezer about a dozen times before we could get it to close--that I was not allowed to purchase any thing else to go in to the freezer. Unfortunately that was before Kroger had its "meat madness" sale and the market up the street had pork butts and ribs at ridiculously low prices as well as trying to get rid of the turkeys they had over-bought for Christmas. I went through and pulled out all of the saved bones, &c and made several gallons of stock and that freed up some space (except for the fact that the stock had to go back in to the freezer albeit in a more organized and useful fashion) and removed some ice containers to make room for the new stuff. As long as I do not find SparrowGrass' old squirrel.........
  12. I would think it would be relatively simple. I have seen a lot of plans to build smokers fr/ old refrigerators in various places on the web and in books so this should be pretty much along the same lines. (We used to have a smoker at a restaurant that was professionally built but was essentially a converted hot box so you might check your suppliers and just copy one that is already built). You could use a hot plate (as Alton did in one of his shows) or an electric charcoal starter for a heat source (too bad the heating element is not in that one any more or you would be a step ahead already). I would not think you would even need a fan and since it is standard issue finding shelves, wire racks, &c should not be a problem at all. Good luck and keep us informed.
  13. not a fan of chains but..... when traveling there are times you have little choice. I try to plan ahead as much as possible but there are long, lonely stretches of inter-state where there is absolutely nothing but chain places. That being said Fuss loves Waffle House and Steak & Shake and I will tolerate Longhorn's & Chik-fil-A (note 3 of the 4 are--or were--Atlanta based so we are helping the home folks!) so if we have to stop at a chain those are the options and the only options (we used to hit Subway but they have gone seriously down-hill). Once we arrive at destination then it is all about the locals and I would not step foot in a chain any where near home.
  14. having waited on tables for a while I have heard just about every thing. I think my favorite was an order for a "giraffe of white zinnia bells" (I kid you not and I asked twice while biting the in side of my cheek so hard it bled just to keep fr/ laughing right in his face). The Rev will walk in to a breakfast place and order "crazy mixed up cackle-berries w/ spicy pig innards, cat head biscuits, rat-trap cheese, and cow squeezins" which translates to "scrambled eggs w/ hot sausage, large biscuits, sharp cheddar & butter". Then tease the waitress about not knowing what he means (he does it w/ a smile on his face and tips well so he gets away w/ it. "Cow juice" or "moo juice" is milk. "Swabajigger" is relish (I have no idea). Powdered milk is "kitty milk" b/c we used to give it to the cats. My nephew was about four when he was staying w/ my parents. They had dried a bunch of apples and had given some to my nephew as a snack. A couple of hours later he told his gr'mother he had enough dry apples and wanted a "wet" apple. So now we ask if you want a "dry" or "wet" apple. Then just the other day my mother called as she was going to the store wanting to know where she could find "adagio" cheese. It took a while before it dawned on me she was looking for "Asiago" cheese. You can imagine her trying to ask me to purchase Grand Marnier, Amaretto, Kahlua, et al (this is the same woman who once told us when she confused two types of cars, "well, they are exactly the same only different".)
  15. Thx again OliverB I stopped by Whole Foods this after noon and got a can. It is "chestnut puree" but that should be close enough and it was on sale! so even better. I hope this trifle she is making is good.
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