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johnnyd

eG foodblog: johnnyd - Dining Downeast II

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johnnyd   

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The island is the principle work area, of course. On the wall back there is the old price board from my floating raw bar (long story), the Cataplana used in Dining Downeast I, and breads, crackers, cereals above dish towels and aprons in the foreground.

Our living area combines the kitchen as the whole second floor. It overlooks some oil tanks, between which we have a fine view of the harbor. Proto-Industrial-Chic works for me. This could be cheating, but here's a shot from a while ago:

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"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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johnnyd   

Last but not least, perched a-top the trusty microwave, The Bar.

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Not shown is more cachaça (51), a little bottle of slivovicz a friend brought back from Eastern Europe, and some Icelandic Brenavin(?) - a sort of caraway seed vodka. That's in the freezer... and has been for nigh on 15 years. Mixers and tools are stashed elsewhere. It's clear I need more space but Mrs. johnnyd doesn't seem to think so - what's up with that? :hmmm::biggrin:


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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The Maine light coming in through your kitchen windows . . . the light on the beach . . . the light while on the boat. Like nowhere else.

I swear it seasons the food.

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Johnny dont drink the Brennivin...its pure Evil - but it is the only way to wash down the fermented shark:blink:

carry on

edit

checked my bottle for correct spelling


Edited by rooftop1000 (log)

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This, I think, is a New England novelty.  Set me straight if it's offered elsewhere.  Behold the Breakfast Pizza.

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This has scrambled egg, cheese, sausage, ham and bacon.  Usually there are two or more pies on the pass but we were "late" at 7:45 (the place is jammed at 5 in the morning). I ignored it for a year or two then tried it on a whim.  It is the most delicious creation known to man.

Somebody has gone and sold you a quiche boyo and after all that rugged fisherman stuff! :wink:

I'm always surprised by how different the North American lobsters look from the European types, like a tiny twist in reality. Those lobster rolls look fantastic BTW.

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johnnyd   
Somebody has gone and sold you a quiche boyo and after all that rugged fisherman stuff! wink.gif
Now you listen here, Pilgrim! Quiche was your invention after you sacked the French! I suspect the remnant Acadian population finally did it justice and made it a working man's breakfast, yah? :laugh: When are you coming over for a boat ride, by the by? We'll go through the fish markets with a fine-toothed comb, you and I. Lord, help them if we do. :wink:

"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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johnnyd   
Johnny dont drink the Brennivin...its pure Evil - but it is the only way to wash down the fermented shark
Hmmm... fermented shark....

Still, that's why the damned stuff is still in my freezer, dear rooftop. It only comes out when a guest or two start boasting and the big white phone needs a cleaning. :wink:

I saw eG member fatdeko this afternoon. We are planning to hatch a new cocktail indigenous to the Great State of Maine, probably Saturday. CLUE: one ingredient is Moxie!


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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gariotin   

Ha Ha - Moxie??? You might have to explain that one to folks outside of New England!

Regional chowders - I discovered that there is a distinct Rhode Island style that uses only cooking stock from the clams. It is very briny and and intense when it is good. Tomato...bah! A cream based chowder is the real deal!

As for the lobster pots - I always thought each trapper had their own marking on the buoys. Different colored stripes or something. Did I fall for a story...I am very gullible.

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johnnyd   
Ha Ha - Moxie???  You might have to explain that one to folks outside of New England!

Regional chowders - I discovered that there is a distinct Rhode Island style that uses only cooking stock from the clams.  It is very briny and and intense when it is good. Tomato...bah!  A cream based chowder is the real deal!

As for the lobster pots - I always thought each trapper had their own marking on the buoys.  Different colored stripes or something.  Did I fall for a story...I am very gullible.

From link provided:
Created in 1876 by Dr. Augustin Thompson formerly of Union, Maine, while working for the Ayer Drug Company in Lowell, Massachusetts. Moxie was first marketed as a patent medicine in Lowell, Massachusetts, under the product name “Moxie Nerve Food”. Moxie was said to cure ailments ranging from softening of the brain to “loss of manhood.” In 1884, it was sold in carbonated form and merchandised as an invigorating drink, which claimed to endow the drinker with “spunk”. In the early phase of its life as a recreational soft drink, Moxie is said to have been kept handy by bartenders to give to customers who were too drunk to be given any more alcohol. This story may be apocryphal, however, inspired by Moxie's noted aftertaste, which many people find unpleasantly strong.
Unpleasantly strong is polite. That's why our objective Saturday will be, well, difficult. John tells me he is working already on a moxie syrup. Dedication to spare, that one.

Chowders - I use Maine shrimp or lobster stock as a base for my chowders, and always cream to finish. Check out **THIS** from the Gulf of Maine Shrimp topic for a detailed shrimp chowder for example.

Each licensed lobsterman has his or her own color combination painted on the bouy. Jeff was no exception - now that you mentioned it, I wish I'd taken a pic of his code.

Maybe next time. :wink:


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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I love the death-defying adventures, the fresh-from-the-water seafood, the rugged shoreline, and the kitchen tour. I am tickled by the Slivovic (a.k.a. “Serbian truth serum”) which featured prominently in several wild bachelor parties back in the day. Have you lived in your house for long? Where is the kitchen island in relation to your range?

The view of oceangoing ships from your window reminds me of Michigan, a thousand miles inland. Relatives live on the St. Clair River, and huge rusty freighters cruise by just outside their living room window. When swimming in the river, we were advised to look out for the freighters because "they won't stop." :biggrin:

I would love to visit Maine and sample its fine seafood. A cousin is building a retirement home in the Maine woods, so that will be a good excuse to visit. Can one find good Maine seafood inland, or must one stay near the coast?

Blog on - I will be sorry to see this end.

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johnnyd   

So for dinner, I set up some bone-in pork butt for a braise

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I added:

1 cup chicken stock

1 cup orange/pineapple juice

1/2 cup cachaça

1 onion, wedge cuts

4 cloves garlic, bruised

1 tblsp whole coriander (I love biting into those after 4hrs+)

2 cinnamon sticks

some allspice powder

some oregano

salt

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I set it on simmer around three o'clock.

At seven o'clock, it looked like this

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Before plating, we made a caipirinha

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It was a pretty good accompaniment to our sunset this evening

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Then we plated some of the braised pork on a couple corn thingies, added a quick tomato & onion/cilantro salsa, and some rice & red beans out of a Vigo packet,

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and called it dinner.

We decided to torture ourselves with a little television...

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Hey, Gordo - when are you coming to Maine, mate? You'd fit right in with this lot! :smile:


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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johnnyd   
Have you lived in your house for long? Where is the kitchen island in relation to your range?
We've been here four years. Our landlady is a kitchen designer and lives next door. She's an eG member klewis but too busy to post. She didn't have to deck this place out but she knew a good configuration for a rental. Considering our budget, when I first saw the place I swooned. The island is right behind the range - see pics up-topic.
huge rusty freighters cruise by just outside their living room window.
Happens all day long here: Freighters, tankers, ferries to Nova Scotia, lobster boats, big yachts, small yachts, all manner of small craft... it's endless. Truly wonderful. :cool:

"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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Top: Vanilla extract & beans, crystalized ginger, preserved apricots, dates... probably something I've forgotten in the back there.

Mid: Sugars - big, honkin' rocks of demerara, coarse granule demerara, regular domino brown, superfine (in my handy Ming Tsai dispenser) and honey.

DownLow: Coffee (Green Mountain in front) and various teas - about eight kinds.

What kind of sugar is demerara, and what is it used for/in?

Also: You gave us a nice, complete tour of your kitchen, but where's the fridge shot?

And finally, on Moxie cocktails: How are you two gonna top Moxie and Jagermeister?


Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

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johnnyd   
Can one find good Maine seafood inland, or must one stay near the coast?
You can find good seafood away from the coast here. Usually, a lot of fishermen live miles inland because those "from away" have purchased high-priced land on the coast where fishermen have traditionally lived. The fishmongers, ten, twenty or more miles inland have a good link with the working boys who drive an hour to the sea for work then an hour back to get home, so they are the logical conduit. Not always though - there are a couple good family-run distributors who travel all over the state. Reliable too.

It's a conundrum folks here ponder frequently. Fishermen should live on the coast - period. They get up at three and drive an hour or more to hop on a boat and then work all day, then drive back. It certainly wasn't like that back in the day.

But back to your question: My Mom, who is 84, always said: "Never buy fish beyond 12 miles from shore" That's a keeper.


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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johnnyd   
What kind of sugar is demerara, and what is it used for/in?
Demarara is a sugar in the mid-stage of processing. It's got a raw flavor that colors your application in a malty kind of way. Not everyone likes it.
where's the fridge shot?
Dang! The fridge is a mess - a recent problem as I've always kept it in line - but I'll snap a couple in short order.
How are you two gonna top Moxie and Jagermeister?
Well, it certainly beats the Sanford Martini: equal parts Moxie & Allen's Coffee Brandy! :wacko:

"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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mizducky   
In the early phase of its life as a recreational soft drink, Moxie is said to have been kept handy by bartenders to give to customers who were too drunk to be given any more alcohol. This story may be apocryphal, however, inspired by Moxie's noted aftertaste, which many people find unpleasantly strong.
Unpleasantly strong is polite.

Glad you said that first. :laugh: I thought I was down with acquired-taste soft drinks because I enjoyed Dr. Brown's Cel-ray Tonic, but then I ran into Moxie and knew I'd met my match.

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johnnyd   

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Someone has knocked the standing stone off the big boulder in the middle. It'll be back up this weekend, guaranteed.

This is Settlers Cemetary which dates from 1658. Apparently, the local natives were tired of sharing and wiped everybody out a couple times.

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If anyone on this vessel is reading the foodblog, I cater an outstanding Raw Bar. eMail me by the end of the day! :smile:

This is my friend Tim and his dog, Portia. Yesterday was a nice day for a boat ride.

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"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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Lovely blog, johnnyd!

Do you live in the part of Maine where you can come up for the summer and work on a blueberry farm? I saw that one time on the FoodNetwork. It looked like a neat way to make some extra cash. One couple said they paid off their vacation picking the blueberries. (But it sure looked backbreaking...)

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johnnyd   
Lovely blog, johnnyd!

Do you live in the part of Maine where you can come up for the summer and work on a blueberry farm?  I saw that one time on the FoodNetwork.  It looked like a neat way to make some extra cash.  One couple said they paid off their vacation picking the blueberries.  (But it sure looked backbreaking...)

Thanks, G888. I'm having fun creating it. It's not as difficult as the first one as now I know to expect the unexpected and to just take it in stride.

The blueberry barrens are Downeast about four hours by car (Maine is a big state - you could fit the rest of New England neatly within it's border). I was there in autumn and the blueberry barren foliage colors were spectacular. They looked like they were on fire.

Picking blueberries is back-breaking work. They use hand-held, multi-tine scoops (see photos here). I've never understood why they didn't have long handles so you could stay upright while harvesting. There must be a reason since Mainers are smart and if there's a way to do things better they find it.


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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johnnyd   
What kind of sugar is demerara, and what is it used for/in?

A world of specialty sugars awaits you.

Thank you Kent. I'll have to study that topic further!

"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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johnnyd   

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Mrs. johnnyd and I went into Portland this morning for breakfast. This time, right on the water at the Porthole #20 Custom House Wharf.

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She had some blueberry pancakes with bacon and I had scrambled eggs with 3-potato homefry and bacon. Coffee, natch.

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These ferries go out to the islands on the hour.

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This place has potential... :rolleyes:

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- Johnnyd's Fried Clams? - Casco Bay Sushi and Bait Supply?? - U Shuck 'em Oyster Bar?? -

:laugh:

What else?


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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Your stove remiinds me that the only gas stoves I've encountered in Maine are in isolated camps where they use bottled propane for all forms of heat. Did they not run gas lines because the ground is frozen so much of the year? I know the seasonal drill with burials in Maine so that would make some sense.

BTW your report from the lobstering trip was terrific. Coming on the heels of a visit with wife's cousin the lobsterman & much talk of traps & sink lines & the ongoing Monhegan vs. The Coast war - ah, it's like I can still feel the fog on my face.


Thank God for tea! What would the world do without tea? How did it exist? I am glad I was not born before tea!

- Sydney Smith, English clergyman & essayist, 1771-1845

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johnnyd   
Your stove remiinds me that the only gas stoves I've encountered in Maine are in isolated camps where they use bottled propane for all forms of heat. Did they not run gas lines because the ground is frozen so much of the year?
No, there are gas stoves in many houses and apartments like anywhere else. Our landlady has a six-burner viking that I always threaten to steal by cutting a big hole in the wall and hauling it through. I don't think she uses it much so it's become a longstanding joke between us...

but one day, I swear...

:wink:


"I took the habit of asking Pierre to bring me whatever looks good today and he would bring out the most wonderful things," - bleudauvergne

foodblogs: Dining Downeast I - Dining Downeast II

Portland Food Map.com

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