Cowboy beans! Yeehaw!

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So I made some cowboy beans.

Actually, I’m not even sure what cowboy beans are, but this is what I imagine they may be. But they may not be this at all. Definitely do not tell your friends these are OG cowboy beans as that may not be fact. I would even go so far as to say there is a high chance it would not be fact. It could even be said that you pretty much just shouldn’t take any of the words on these here pages, or indeed those that pass my lips, as being fact. I’m pretty much a big fat faker. This is not gospel and I am not the lord. Onto those beans…

I feel they would be most authentic served from a big pot on the back of the chuck wagon. That is a fact.

Time for oven loving

Now it’s get into my face time


COWBOY BEANS

(For the family. Like the whole family. Like extended family, neighbours, stray kids and those carnie folk just barely clinging onto life in the cage under your back stair case… and then there will probably still be some to freeze down for later.)

500g navy beans, black beans or whatever the frick kinda dried beans you have floating about in the back of your wagon, soaked over night and then cooked until tender
500-800g whatever meat you have floating about in the back of your wagon. BBQ leftovers are the best for this – smoked brisket, pork ribs, actually any cut of pork or sausages… roast left overs… or just some nice smoky porky things from your local man
1 teaspoon each onion powder, garlic powder and hot sauce
1 tablespoon each American ballpark mustard and Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Big Red Rub or your favourite BBQ dry rub
½ cup tomato ketchup
3x 400g tins crushed or chopped tomatoes or something similar
Salt and pepper
Fried eggs (or crack them straight into the beans and bake for an extra 5 minutes for tasty-assed one pan glory), chopped fresh herbs, jalapenos and toast to serve

Chop meat/s into bite sized chunks.
Heat a splash of oil in a large oven pan over medium heat. Add meat/s and sauté until browned a little.
Add all other ingredients and cook out for 5 minutes.
Check seasoning and adjust if necessary (that’s what your salt and pepper is for).
Place into 180-200C oven for 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Add a splash of water if mix starts to dry out – kinda saucy is kinda good I reckon. (You could finish these beans totally on the stovetop if you don’t feel like lighting your oven… or you just don’t actually have an oven… but they really do benefit from a little oven bubbly caramelized tomato bits. Jus’ saying)
That’s it. Serve it up – breakfast, lunch or dinner. Pretty simple, just how the cowboys would’ve liked it. Yeehaw.

A Cracking Winter Barbecue and My Nana Rose’s Potato Salad

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Cook some sausages on the BBQ and while your at it, get a nice pot of pulled pork on there too

Cook some sausages on the BBQ and while your at it, get a nice pot of pulled pork on there too


I have been on a brief hiatus, much like the syphilis in the old sea farer’s knickers after a quick shot of penicillin (pun well and truly intended), but never fear, I will always return to these pages just like the venereal disease will return to the knickers of the wayward sailor. It’s just that, much like the wayward sailor with the laden purse, I have found a new mistress who promises me pleasures of the flesh… or at least a new job. That’s right, I have a new job. And just like a new mistress that new job will take up a lot of my time. But unlike a new mistress, it will reward me with the a fist full of the queen’s good dollars so I may ensure the bank does not for-close on our mortgage, rendering us of no home and obligated to join the queue of haggard, potato sack wearing folks with clear birth defects, begging the carnie folk to employ our feeble services.

To top off the new job business, Jennee and I have decided to start a new little business venture all of our own. Now, don’t start letting your mind wonder about the you tube clips we may or may not be offering the world in the not to distant future because the little undertaking we are embarking on is totally legit! We, my friends, are starting a catering business.

Oh yes the things we shall do.

So that, in a nut shell (not an actually nut shell, of course. That would make me some kind of squirrel or that weird little creature off “Ice Age” the picture film) is why I have had neither the time nor… well… just the time really, to visit my friends in Blogland.

But here I am with some pretty pictures of another cracking winter barbecue we sorted out recently and, just for your face’s pleasure at your next winter (or summer) barbecue, I shall revisit the recipe for my Nana Rose’s potato salad. This salad is pretty flexible when it comes to the use of smoked pork product and herbs. Smoked Polish sausage is what Nana would use but bacon, speck, ham or any smoked pork product are all very feasible alternatives. Also, I often use dill instead of parsley (of even both if you want to be total rock star), but any herb would work.

It’s great to be back, thanks for having me and you’re very welcome.

Get it on the table so people can eat it

Get it on the table so people can eat it

Give them forks. We are not animals

Give them forks. We are not animals

Plenty to go round

Plenty to go round

Don't be afraid to chuck some flowers on your salad as it tends to impress the shit out of your friends. Just make sure they're edible as poisoning your friends equals no friends for you

Don’t be afraid to chuck some flowers on your salad as it tends to impress the shit out of your friends. Just make sure they’re edible as poisoning your friends equals no friends for you

Smoked sausage, sauerkraut, caramelised onion, mustard, tomato relish, jalapeño relish and gruyere cheese, in a roll and about to make it's way into my belly

Smoked sausage, sauerkraut, caramelised onion, mustard, tomato relish, jalapeño relish and gruyere cheese, in a roll and about to make it’s way into my belly

That potato salad

That potato salad

MY NANA ROSE’S POTATO SALAD

1kg baby potatoes, boiled in their skin, whole, until tender (the potato should slide off easily when you insert a knife. Kind of like a stripper sliding down a pole. Are those things lubed up or what? Wait up. I think I just got it) and cut into bite sized pieces
1 brown onion, peeled and diced
4-5 polski ogorki (dill pickles), diced
1 cup of diced smoked sausage
4 boiled eggs, peeled and chopped
A bunch of parsley, chopped
1-2 tablespoons white wine or apple cider vinegar, or the liquid from the pickles
A splash of oil (not engine oil. Vegetable or light olive oil should do the trick)
Salt and a good hit of white pepper

• The main requirement for making this is that it is mixed while the potatoes are still warm so all of the ingredients can have a little party and their flavours can really get to know each other, just like when you’re at and orgy and you can taste a little bit of everyone on each and every person. This salad is good porn.

Doesn’t look like much but that’s childhood memories in a bowl right there.

Make it today, or go to an orgy. Up to you…

The Many Lands Challenge for Sammy… part 4… Vote Grazza #1

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The Many Lands Challenge for Sammy… part 4

For me I want to win any competition I enter. Even if I have zero chance of winning I still want to win. I want to be the tall handsome guy that wins a competition for the grotesque midget circus freak of the year. I’m the white guy with the small penis in the “black guys and their huge willies” show. I want to be the women who beat testicular cancer, and the dog who wins the cat show. Dreams aside, the Many Lands Challenge (still so impressed with that name) is no different. I want to win… I should win.

I will give you a dish that is not only tasty, but also accessible. I think when we break this challenge down to the nuts and bolts it’s about Sammy and her desire to impress her Gelfling beau. Now I don’t think we need to tie her down with complex curry pastes or half cooked national emblems or things of the such. No. She needs good, simple food she can cook and impress this guy enough to get his dacks off. And what could be better to do that then some pork? (Oh the innuendo). What’s that? Pork and sausage on the same plate? Yes. Yes. Pork belly? Roasted with crackle? Yes. I’m having a moment here.

What are we cooking? I hear you ask. We go to the lands of my fore fathers. The lands of questionable sexual acts… The lands of Germany and Poland. So pack your plastic coveralls and get ready for Pork belly with smoked sausage, sauerkraut, chat potatoes and mustard. This dish will win it for me!*

There’s a little German/polish small goods stall in the South Melbourne Markets**. Go there and ask for a nice, smoky sausage. And maybe throw a little wink at the lady when you do, just to let her know it’s for impure intent. And get a jar of sauerkraut while you’re there. And some polish mustard.

PORK BELLY
1kg pork belly, skin scored (if you give it a 9/10 I would suggest you may want to take it back to the butcher and ask him to score it for you because you’ve clearly missed the point)
• Season the pork skin quite heavily with sea salt and white pepper
• Cut 1 brown onion and 1 granny smith apple into 2cm thick slices and put them onto a baking tray, place the pork on top of the onion and apple. This will act as a trivet and give the pork juices a delicious flavour
• Whack it into a preheated oven at 160C for two hours. Rotate the oven tray after one hour
• For the last 10 minutes of cooking crank your oven up as high as it will go to effect the crackling
• If your crackle isn’t quite there, another 5 minutes under the grill should do it
• Now rest your pork

SAUERKRAUT AND POTATOES
• Simmer your jar of sauerkraut with a splash of Riesling and a pinch of caraway seeds
• After 10 minutes add the whole smoked sausage to the pot and simmer for another 10 minutes with the lid on
• While this is going on boil a handful of chat (new) potatoes. Once cooked, drain them, season them, add a little butter and some chopped parsley, and leave them in the pot off the heat to stay warm

TIME TO PLATE UP
• Slice the sausage and arrange it sexily (like German sexy) on a plate with the sauerkraut and potatoes
• Put a nice big chunk of pork belly on top of that
• Add a little of the pan juices (you could even blitz the apple and onion up into an apple sauce if its not too caramelised aka. Burnt) and serve mustard on the side
• My grandparents would be very happy with this one

*Just in case you’re not up to date on what’s going on, this Many Lands Challenge is also a competition between myself and Pauly, as voted by you the people, to see who gets to do the dessert course. You can vote anywhere on this blog. Sorry. Facebook doesn’t count.

**If you don’t live near Melbourne maybe try somewhere local to you. It would be silly to go all the way to Melbourne just for some smoked sausage… Or would it?