Category Archives: Cooking

Helping the guys

Gentlemen, the other day I was on the phone with a (girl) friend of mine and she was complaining that her boyfriend never did anything for her. I quickly ran interference and listed a few things like diamonds, Cristal, and various vacations. Like the good the good friend I am, I told her I was done with her, hung up, and called her boyfriend. I asked him the following question, “dude, how can you put up with her?” His reply, “Bro, she’s hot and I get laid WHENEVER I want it.” I found no flaws in his logic. He proceeded to tell me about the situation at hand, saying that she wants him to be more giving in the sense of cleaning the house and cooking. I promptly stopped him there.

The girl we are speaking about is a vegetarian and by proxy so is he. So, my advice to grill up a steak was shot down quicker than Harry Whittington. Being the good guy I am, I suggested a nice soup since there is an Arctic blast rolling through where they live. I proceeded to tell him about a broccoli soup recipe that would kick her right in the baby maker and elevate him to domestic rock star status. He followed the following instructions and his status was swiftly “elevated” if you know what I mean. So, gentlemen, follow this recipe and you too can hang out with your wang out:

You will need

3 crowns of broccoli

1 pint of heavy whipping cream

1 wedge of sheep/goats milk cheese ( I used black sheep truffle cheese-good earthy balance)

Good cheese

Good cheese

salt and pepper for taste

Start by cutting up 2 crowns of the broccoli. Combine the cream and cheese in a bowl to have it ready.

Get your items ready

Get your items ready

Then steam 2 of the 3 crowns of broccoli in 2 cups of water. Use a steamer basket if you have one. If not boil the water then add the broccoli, cook until soft.

Steam is good!

Steam is good!

Once properly steamed, chop up the cooked broccoli in a food processor, blender, magic bullet or what ever. Keep the water in the pot (it will be green). If you do not have a way to chop it up, just dump it in the water and mash it up with a plastic spoon. Then, once properly chopped or mashed, add the cream/cheese mixture to the water and broccoli pot. Then season with salt and pepper to taste.

Umm, all done.

Umm, all done.

Let this simmer on low for about an hour stirring every 15 minutes. It will be rich and creamy and ready to kick your girl right in the ovary’s! Then, deploy the adult beverages and enjoy the fruits of your labor. I promise this will be a home run and she will leave you alone next time PTI comes on.

Enjoy!

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Music+hunger=Creativity

What happens when JP is left without any roommates and there is really no food in the house? Thats right, it means it is time to dust off that old record, heat up the stove, and move your dancin feet.

I have to admit that I really neglected any and all adult responsibilities this weekend, especially after hanging out with an ex-girlfriend (I am trying to make things cool for the sake of the friends). So I did not bother to go shopping or even attempt to make a list. Instead, I pulled out the cooking “man style” book (I opened the fridge) and proceeded to rock out with the music blasting. You may wonder, JP what is a man dish? Well, it is a dish that traditionally ends up in one pot and covers all major food groups at once. Here is what I found in the fridge and how it went down:

2 green peppers sliced in food processor

1 large onion sliced in food processor

10 cloves of garlic coarsely minced

5 red potatos

1 packet of fajita seasoning

1 pound of lamb

1 pack of red beans and rice

cheese (optional)

Heres how it went down:

Season the onions, peppers, and garlic with 1/2 packet of fajita seasoning in a bowl with a dash of olive oil

make them onions sweat

make them onions sweat

Do the same for the potatoes

Umm, goodness

Umm, goodness

Then get your grind on with the lamb and start the rice and beans according to the package. Once the rice and beans are going and the lamb is ground, cook it up.

Cheap and easy, kind of like me

Cheap and easy, kind of like me

Get'cha grind on

Get'cha grind on

After cooking the meat add it to the pot. Then brown your peppers and onions while frying up the potatoes. This is where having ADD comes in handy. Once all elements are cooked add them the rice and beans pot.

By this point your house will smell really good

By this point your house will smell really good

While simmering all elements, add 2 heaping spoon fulls of the secret ingredient.

Several million Asian's can't be wrong

Several million Asian's can't be wrong

After the garlic sauce let simmer for 5 minutes. Now it is ready to serve. I suggest adding a dairy product just to make sure everything is covered.

Now your man meal is complete

Now your man meal is complete

There you have it. A one pot man meal with scavenged scraps of food from the fridge. Remember this can be done with a wide variety of food sources, the key here is creativity.

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Memories

Hello again. I have successfully pulled my head out of my ass (with the help of a tow truck) and returned to writing. This week has been a bit, well, trying. Even though it has been a bit trying and I have been REALLY anti-social, I did manage to have a pretty deep conversation with a life long member of the JP fan club. A person that I have both loved and hated passionately, who is still one of my closest friends. We chatted about some really deep estranged family issues that we have in common; well, we basically grew up together. This Cubanita is still one person I can speak with and know that she gets where I am coming from.

After talking with her I had a “Scrubs”  style flashback. The glorious kind that even now while I write this, I smile. I recalled sitting at  my Cuban family’s big kitchen table after a large meal, sipping cafe cubano and playing dominoes. Discussing political situations on the island with a retired Cuban police officer and a delusional union organizer. These discussions were passionate and in Spanglish. It was a concept that only today, do I begin to understand. Being 14 years old and far away from any sign of my Irish roots, I was estranged and comfortable at the same time.

Like any strong passionate culture may it be Irish, Cuban, or German, food is the central theme. In this “flashback” one of my all time favorite dishes made an appearance. A very simple working class meal, Picadillo. Loosely translated,  Cuban beef hash. And it is damn good!

I remember coming over and Abuela always asking, “did you eat? Are you hungry? I will fix you something.” This something, Picadillo con frijoles negros y maduros. I would sit and savor this dish that was hand made for me, as if I was the star of the show, king of the castle, nay, master of my domian;  Abuelo, well always saved me a seat near him, so that we could watch the miss Venezula competitions and he knew that he would get served as well. As for Abuelita, well this woman could cook. So well, that even today Picadillo prepared by anyone other than Abuelita, is an inferior product.But every once and a while I come across a place that comes close. This was the case Monday.

I was jonesin’ like a crack head on 10 spot binge and I had a coupon! Yes, I was rash and brazen to go out and buy. I committed a sin against all Cuban grandmothers everywhere; for this I apologize. While seeking forgiveness, I would like to share Abuelita’s recipe for Picadillo, so that you can build the same memories I have. Enjoy!

Umm, goodness!

Umm, goodness!

Abuela’s Easy Picadillo Recipe (Feed 4 Americans OR 2 Cubans)

1 lb. ground beef (Not too lean)
2 tbsp of olive oil
2 tbsp of Garlic Powder
3/4 of a small can of tomato sauce
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1/4 to 1/2 cup Pimento Olives (As much or as little as you like)
SALT (to taste, remember the olives and tomato sauce are salty to watch your hand)
Raisins (this ingredient is optional, it is a family thing not everyone likes it)

Ok so take the oil and warm in a skillet. Add the beef and season with the salt and garlic powder. Raise the heat to med or med high. As you cook the beef be sure to break it up as much as you can. When the meat is 1/2 way browned add the green peppers and onions. Incorporate these ingredients. Once meat looks fully cooked add the tomato sauce, olives and raisins(if using). Lower heat to med or med low and cover. Let simmer for about 10-15 minutes or until you think the onions and peppers are nice and soft.

Serve over white rice. Indian firm/Basmati rice is the best. Most Cubans like to use Mahatma white rice. Remember to put olive oil in your rice if you want it to taste authentic.

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Vicoden

Typically I can handle a great deal of pain, however this time I was not so strong. Next time a dentist armed with a drill and a pry bar asks, “JP would you like to be fully sedated or just Novocaine” and I respond with anything other than “here is my best vein,” shoot me and end my miserable existence. I do not deserve to carry on. As I have said before, I had a wisdom tooth removed from my jaw and I was basically incapacitated for a week clamoring to my bottle of the little white wonderful chemical helpers. So, what does JP do when he is totally wasted and have nothing to do? Thats right, cook up a big hunk of meat!

I had been tapped or volunteered to make the Christmas main dish this year, as I have been chosen in the past. This time I was blasted on Vicoden! What did I cook you may ask? I drop kicked a 10 pound pork shoulder…Boo Yea! Let me introduce you to the 3 day Florida Christmas Cookin’ JP style.

First start out with a fresh 10 lb. Boston Butt and coat with the following marinade and allow to set overnight:

Marinated Pork Shoulder

Marinated Pork Shoulder

  1. 20 cloves of garlic
  2. 6 tablespoons nutmeg
  3. 5 springs of thyme
  4. 6 ounces of quality rum
  5. 3 cups of brown sugar
  6. Dust with sea salt and cracked pepper.

Then next day pull it out of the fridge and get the fire a blazin. At this point being on vicoden and playing with using lighter fluid and matches, may not be the best idea. Oh well. Let it burn!img000581Then get out the trust ax and go swinging away on the closet orange tree to you. Also, add 2 oranges to the wood and squeeze the juice all over the wood. This is where it gets erotic romantic.img00059This is the point in which you need to place the pork on the opposite side of the smoker you intend to use. I prefer to put my meat close to the stove pipe (that sounds really bad). Once you have it all set up, drop those firey coals on top of the wood and oranges.img00060Close ‘er up and and let it go for 8 hours. Every hour or 2 check the smoke level, if it is not coming out at a decent rate, throw some more wood on the fire. It should look something like this.img00061Once it comes off the smoker, shred the meat off the bone (sounds uncomfortable) and place in a roasting plan large enough to hold it. Cover with foil and place back in the fridge. Next day, throw it in the oven on 225 for about 2 hours and it will then be ready to go. By placing it back in the oven, it allows all the fat to break down and re-marinate-keeps everything nice and juicy.

So, unlike cooking the ham, I did not set the house on fire. Matter in fact this is the perfect way for a “stoned” individual to cook a meal. Plus, while I was lounging around I received a killer gift that I had won from a beautiful woman, Lemmonex! Though, I was concerned I may catch her wicked illness via post, kind of like anthrax, but not really…Ah, its good to be JP! Oh and this recipe feeds like 50, so feel free to scale down a bit if your party is not as grand.

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