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Varmint's Pig Pickin'


Varmint
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Ahem.
Great story.  Ham biscuits are a staple here in North Carolina, but there are actually two different types.  Most of the restaurant/fast food places will serve the traditional biscuit made with self rising flour, soda, buttermilk & milk/cream, butter/shortening, and salt.  However, when done for catered events or brunches, you typically see angel biscuits, which are a bit lighter and less savory.  Angel biscuits also contain yeast, which transforms them tremendously.

Regardless, they're all yummy.  If there is ever a North Carolina eGullet get together, I'll be sure to supply the group with biscuits galore!

Did I say that? Well, I'm hoping someone excuses me from that obligation this time around, as I'm going to be fairly busy. However, whipping up a few dozen biscuits and plopping some good country ham on them is pretty damn easy.

Anyhow, I want to start recruiting volunteers for the event. This is a thankless job, but I'll be indebted to you. I plan on starting the pig sometime late Friday night. I'll get everything set up, but I really need to get 6 hours of sleep. The early stages of cooking a pig are the most critical: you need to keep the temperature fairly low, right around 200 degrees. This allows the fat to begin the rendering process. Over the course of the night, we'll need to monitor what's going on, keep the firebox going, and add the wood coals to maintain the temperature. I'll need several folks who are night owls to take an hour or two. If I sleep from midnight to 6, I'll be fine for the rest of the day. I'll need help on Saturday, too, of course, but those wee hours will be crucial, and I want to be fairly rested on Saturday. I'll provide liquid refreshments of choice, of course!

There will be lots going on, but I appreciate those who will take one for the team!

Thanks!

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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We'll help Dean! Perhaps some coffee with Bailey's will be in order :biggrin:

Edited by Marlene (log)

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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We'll help Dean!  Perhaps some coffee with Bailey's will be in order :biggrin:

It will probably still be quite warm then, Marlene, so perhaps an iced coffee with Baileys will be perfect! And thanks for the offer of help.

As far as cars and walking are concerned, you'll probably want to rent a car. The hotel is 2.1 miles from my house and is a pleasant walk. It's also within a mile of a number of restaurants and watering holes. It's a 2.1 mile walk to the second oldest Krispy Kreme in the country.

The hotel is standard issue Holiday Inn. You won't get luxury, but you'll get a fine, simple room. At that price, it's quite a deal. Thanks again Jaymes.

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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We'll help Dean!  Perhaps some coffee with Bailey's will be in order :biggrin:

It will probably still be quite warm then, Marlene, so perhaps an iced coffee with Baileys will be perfect! And thanks for the offer of help.

As far as cars and walking are concerned, you'll probably want to rent a car. The hotel is 2.1 miles from my house and is a pleasant walk. It's also within a mile of a number of restaurants and watering holes. It's a 2.1 mile walk to the second oldest Krispy Kreme in the country.

The hotel is standard issue Holiday Inn. You won't get luxury, but you'll get a fine, simple room. At that price, it's quite a deal. Thanks again Jaymes.

Delighted to help if we can! Iced coffee and baileys would work just fine :biggrin: We are looking at flights right now, I'm pretty sure we'll fly down on points. Of course if the Sheraton was closer we could stay there for free too, since we have way too many starwood points. Anyway, I'm on the details. We'll be there, golf clubs in hand :biggrin:

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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The hotel is standard issue Holiday Inn.  You won't get luxury, but you'll get a fine, simple room.  At that price, it's quite a deal.  Thanks again Jaymes.

Yes, Jaymes, bless you. You're sumpin' special!! :smile:

Would love to meet you all . . .

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Varmint, looks like I might be dragging my Bro Rich along too.  Also rumor has it that Cat Lancaster from the heartland group might be susceptible to a little cajoling...

Yep, =Mark talked me into it. I'm a go.

Since MaggietheCat, and maybe Aurora seem to be coming from Chitown as well, we can represent the Heartland contingent. Hold on to your hats, keep a drink in our hands, and don't ask us for forgiveness in the morning...

Cat in Chicago

cat lancaster

catchi@ix.netcom.com

Portland, OR

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I measured distances from the Brownstone yesterday, so y'all would have an idea of walking distances: the NC State campus is about 3 blocks away. A great steak joint is 0.9 miles away (Sullivan's), which would be as far as you'd walk. Within that distance, you can find no fewer than 20 restaurants. We can send you for great pizza (Moonlight -- although it's owned by my wife's cousins, so we're biased), the best wine service in the city, if not the state (with an unbelievable wine by the glass option based on the size of the pour -- Enoteca Vin), a great martini selection -- oops, that's actually another block away (Bogart's), 2 Irish pubs, 2 Chinese restaurants, 2 earthy/crunchy/granola type places, a chili joint, a mexican place, an oyster bar, a sushi joint, a good Italian (518 West), a brew pub (Southend Brewery), a French restaurant (Bistro 607), a sports bar, a Greek fast food place, a hot dog drive in, and Char Grill, a Raleigh hamburger institution. Oh, there's an IHOP along the way, too. Going in the other direction towards the NC State campus, you'll find all the familiar trappings of a college campus, including lots of coffee houses and bagel shops (chains, unfortunately), but also 2 homemade ice cream places, a pretty darned good restaurant (Frazier's).

I just wanted folks to know how perfect this location is for y'all!

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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more importantly, how far is the cracker barrel and waffle house.

The Waffle House is about 2 and a half miles away -- and it's on the same street as the hotel!

No Cracker Barrels, nearby, however. The NC State Fairgrounds are about 3 to 4 miles away. And there's Big Ed's in downtown Raleigh for you, where you can get country ham, scrambled eggs with pork brains, grits and red eye gravy.

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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that place has some wine list.  i love the way they offer glasses in 3 different sizes.  i've never seen that, even in NYC.  i'd love that.

Enoteca Vin is owned by the same people who own Carolina Wine Company, which is arguably the best wine shop in the Southeast, if not the entire east coast.

They have pretty damn good food at Vin, too.

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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The NC State Fairgrounds are about 3 to 4 miles away. 

Home of the weekly Flea Market where you can enjoy boiled peanuts, roasted corn on a stick, and funnel cakes year round! And don't forget to pick up some tube socks while you're there.

Although I suspect most might enjoy the State Farmer's Market a bit more. Over priced and over commercialized though it may be.

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The NC State Fairgrounds are about 3 to 4 miles away. 

Home of the weekly Flea Market where you can enjoy boiled peanuts, roasted corn on a stick, and funnel cakes year round! And don't forget to pick up some tube socks while you're there.

Although I suspect most might enjoy the State Farmer's Market a bit more. Over priced and over commercialized though it may be.

Why do you think the Farmers Market is over-commercialized? I agree that the prices are a bit high, but a lot of that is due to price fixing. It's a great example of what happens when the antitrust laws aren't enforced.

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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that place has some wine list.  i love the way they offer glasses in 3 different sizes.  i've never seen that, even in NYC.  i'd love that.

Enoteca Vin is owned by the same people who own Carolina Wine Company, which is arguably the best wine shop in the Southeast, if not the entire east coast.

They have pretty damn good food at Vin, too.

Vin also has a great Sunday brunch.

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Why do you think the Farmers Market is over-commercialized?  I agree that the prices are a bit high, but a lot of that is due to price fixing.  It's a great example of what happens when the antitrust laws aren't enforced.

The fact that every stall sells the same things for the same prices is the main reason.

I'm also not usually not overly impressed by the quality. The fruits and vegetables can be very good, but they are also at times (far too often) poor quality - yet amazingly still priced just the same. This is mostly in regards to the permanent stalls, the people that are there every week, as opposed to the people who show up just during a certain season - strawberriers, corn, peaches etc. The quality is much higher for the seasonal sellers, although even they somehow manage to amazinginly arrive at the same prices.

My main basis for comparison is the Pike Place Market in Seattle. There, the quality and variety was consistently excellent, while the pricing not nearly as uniform. That isn't to say the Pike Place Market was inexpensive, but at least if you compared among the various vendors you could usually find what you were looking for on sale and it was almost always of excellent quality. The sellers at Pike Place, especially the permanent stalls, actually seemed to care about what they sold, I don't get that feeling from the NC State Farmer's Market, at least not from the permanent stalls. I've seen them put shit out for sale that I wouldn't take home if they gave it to me, and every permanent stall seems to sell the exact same varieties as the next.

Alll that said, I still go to the State Farmer's Market fairly often, mostly for the smaller seasonal stalls, but overall it could be so much better. I keep meaning to go the Farmer's Market in Carborro, but it's a bit of a drive.

Is it any different?

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Varmint -

Looks like you need to ammend that count for me to Weka +2 and climbing. Husband is a definite. My little sis' is going to fly in from CT that weekend. Also, I am working on a friend from High Point who plays guitar and banjo and is into any sort of local festival/get together. He hails from Philly. Who knows what else will happen between now and then.

Also, my offer to help out still stands. However, unlike some folks on here I never have much of a detailed schedule several months in advance. But, I am happy to report though that the vet school sets us all free at 3:25 p.m. on Oct. 8th, the Wed. So I am off on both the Thurs. and Fri. and should be able to lend a big last minute hand. I also have a good sized kitchen as mentioned earlier, if overflow an cooking/staging area is needed.

By the way, please let me know if the pig gets too big for your bathtub as it might be able to fit in one of mine.

I'm back in Cary now and thankful for that wonderful list of restaurants and wine joints that just came out on this thread. Still finding my way around here, but so far no complaints.

- Weka

"Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least."

- Goethe

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Here's a list of who's coming:

Hjshorter + 23 (actually, only +3) (DC area)

ZebA + 1-1/2 (Raleigh)

Marlene +1 (Toronto)

Vengroff +1 (DC)

Jaymes (Texas but Missouri by then)

=Mark (NJ)

=Mark's "bro" Rich

maggiethecat (Chi-town)

Holly Moore (Philly)

KatieLoeb (Philly)

Malawry (DC area)

edemuth (DC area)

Dave the Cook (Hotlanta)

Kpurvis (Charlotte)

Dlc (Tennessee)

Mummer (Philly)

claire797 +2 (??)

herbacidal (??) (Philly)

Blondie (NY)

Ditsydine (Raleigh)

NewYorkTexan (??) (Austin, TX)

Jason & Rachel Perlow (Jersey – in their RV)

Timothycdavis (Charlotte)

Weka +2 (Cary)

Hungry Chris +1 (where are you from?)

Jmcgrath (Massachussets)

Hscottk is very interested (NJ)

Sam Iam is trying to cajole family members to come (Michigan)

Ladybug +4 (a strong maybe)

cat lancaster (Chicago)

foodie52 +1 ???? (Texas -- "thinking" about it -- book those tickets now and make the commitment!!!)

tommy +1 (NJ/NYC)

Lady T ???? (Chicago?)

Nickn from Maine is thinking that meeting people from eGullet may be worth a thousand mile drive.

Xanthippe needs just a touch more pushing, and she's here, all the way from California. Gee, maybe we could figure out a way to get Torakris here from Japan, too!

Aurora is still trying to round up the Heartland gang, but now that summer is upon them, they're all in a bit of a daze (but we do have the 2 "cats" from the Second City!)

Bourdain? Who's he? This will be even too raucous for him.

Edited by Varmint (log)

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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:smile:

I need to see about getting off my church job on the Sunday and getting a sub for myself; then find out what the other Heartlanders are doing as to travel/hotel arrangements...call me a 'maybe' too!

:biggrin:

Me, I vote for the joyride every time.

-- 2/19/2004

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Just counting the eGulleteers, we're looking at 35. Adding spouses, children, dates, and pets, we're at 53.

This does not include my mother-in-law, who has volunteered not only her house to let people crash (sorry, folks, I respectfully declined for all of you!), but also to make a couple dozen pound cakes and cobblers. She likes to entertain!!! Although it's not Southern, she makes an awesome limoncello that might make an appearance.

Dean McCord

VarmintBites

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Folks - the hotel information has now dropped back where it might be difficult to find.

It is really important that if you are going to be attending, you at least strongly consider staying at the Holiday Inn. Otherwise, the rate might well go up for those of us that do.

So, I'm starting another thread with the hotel information in it.

Thanks.

Your EG travel coordinator.

:biggrin:

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Scott discovered a conflict that weekend, but I have badgered him into going. Can you believe he was actually going to turn down the pig-pickin to attend the world Diplomacy championship here in DC? What a dweeb.

For those of you who don't know already, Diplomacy is a game. Here's a short description:

"The game of international intrigue.

May your wit be as sharp as your sword, because Avalon Hill's DIPLOMACY game has captured the true spirit of the legendary board game. You'll start as one of the seven pre-WWI superpowers, England, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, Turkey, and Austria-Hungary. These political boundaries will become your prey as you negotiate your way to the top. Beg, threaten, plead and argue your way past nations where friends become pawns and enemies become allies. You'll have to be cunning, smooth, and deceitful. This is a game that can't be left to chance.

A detailed map takes you back to the dawn of the Twentieth Century!"

He plays over the internet. :rolleyes:

I love him...but jeez.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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Folks - the hotel information has now dropped back where it might be difficult to find.

It is really important that if you are going to be attending, you at least strongly consider staying at the Holiday Inn.  Otherwise, the rate might well go up for those of us that do.

So, I'm starting another thread with the hotel information in it. 

Thanks.

Your EG travel coordinator.

:biggrin:

Maybe we can get the travel info pinned?

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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Although it's not Southern, she makes an awesome limoncello that might make an appearance.

Shoot, Varmint! That's what I was going to bring! Between Herbacidal's Ginger infused Vodka and my limoncello, I was going to whip up some mean cocktails for the crowd. Lemon-Ginger Pig Pickers, perhaps? :biggrin:

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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