Wednesday, January 12, 2011

It begins at the beginning.

A young friend of mine had a wonderful idea for 2010. She decided to cook 100 untried recipes from her collection of Southern Living Cookbooks. I guess, like her we all have cookbooks hanging out, unused for the most part. Last year I went through a tremendous purging. Nothing like a complete kitchen remodel to get you into clutter rehab. I sent boxes and boxes to Goodwill ridding myself of anything that had not been used in at least a year. Along with the varied small appliances, old kitchen linens, assorted platters and odd pots and pans, I gave away approximately 50 cookbooks. When I decided to take on this challenge my first thought was "Shoot, I don't have many cookbooks left to even cook from". Then I actually counted what remained. I have over 50 books ranging from The Revised Rumford Complete Cookbook circa 1939 ( A very treasured volume which belonged to my late Grandmother and has her old handwritten recipes on every formerly blank space in the book. ) to The French Laundry Cookbook.

My mission, should I choose to accept it, is to cook 100 never tried by me recipes from my collection of books. I will post each recipe along with a brief description of anything I think you need to know about the prep. ( I will be brutally honest with what I think of prep time and the value of actually making the dish by the recipe vs. taking acceptable shortcuts.

I have been cooking since I was 2 (verified by home movies of me from 2 until I was old enough to balk at having Dad take anymore) As kids, my best friend and I would entertain ourselves in either her kitchen or mine. By the time we were about 10 we were making mock pink champagne and chocolate mousse. At 13 we were creating concoctions that we made for our families to sample as full meals. I guess I am returning to the 13 year old me, but I will not be making mock cocktails or chocolate mousse. My travelers in this adventure will be my husband and Son3, the only one still living at home. I am sure they will offer opinions about the food for me to share, but be warned...Son3 is disdainful of anything with mushrooms and onions so his opinions will contain a certain bias.

So I begin this blog and I am sharing a recipe I made last week when I decided to do this, but kept forgetting about the posting part until tonight. I would like to blame being exceedingly busy but I live in Alabama and we were just hit by a snow/ice storm and when it snows here everything comes to a screeching halt.
Well I have finally gotten my rear in gear so here it goes.

A Symphony of Chefs Vestavia Hills High School Band
This cookbook is the current fundraiser for the Vestavia Hills High School Band program. Instead of asking the parents for recipes, the cookbook committee sent emails all over the country, asking various restaurants and chefs for a recipe to include in the book. The result was a cookbook with a true smorgasbord of recipes.

Real Deal BBQ Drumsticks ...East Coast Grill and Raw Bar
Cambridge, Massachusetts

1/4 cup ground paprika
1/4 cup freshly cracked pepper
2 tablespoons brown sugar (packed)
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons dry mustard
1 tablespoon powdered ginger
14-16 medium chicken drumsticks
(or what I used) 5 chicken breast halves sliced in thick strips

Either build a charcoal fire and let it cool to a medium heat, or do like I did and turn on the gas grill to medium. Mix all the ingredients except for the chicken in a small mixing bowl. Make sure all of the ingredients are distributed evenly. Rub the chicken legs or strips thoroughly with the mix and set aside a few minutes before grilling. While they are resting get the sauce ready to cook

1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/3 cup molasses
10 dashes Worcestershire sauce

Put all of the ingredients in a small boiler and cook for about 10 minutes over a low heat stirring constantly.

Put the chicken on the grill and cover, but have the grill lid vented.
(On my grill it means putting an empty tuna can under one corner of the lid. You may own a much fancier grill and have built in vents to open. If so have them about 1/4 of the way opened)
These will cook slowly (about 30-40 minutes depending on the heat in your grill). After about 20 minutes of cooking mop some sauce on the chicken legs turn them and mop the other side. Repeat the process after 7-10 minutes . Check for doneness and enjoy.

I served the chicken with a tossed salad and rolls. We really did enjoy the flavor especially the rub. The sauce was a little too sweet and thick for us, but we tend to like a little more vinegar and less ketchup. The next time I make this I will use 3/4 cup vinegar and 3/4 cup ketchup. It will keep the liquid proportions the same but should cut down on the sweetness and thickness. The rub is outstanding. After eating the chicken I made 2 recipes of the rub just to have on hand for anything else we want to grill. I will probably add a little cayenne but will add it as I use it instead of altering the entire batch. This recipe got 3 repeat requests. When I make it next time I will double everything so we can have leftovers.

Later taters!

1 comment:

  1. The adventure looking forward to following along!