Monday, June 1, 2009

Wishing for some sunshine!

In a continuation of playing with the new toy, we (well, actually he) smoked some chickens Friday night in the previously mentioned Cookshack Smokette -

don't they look great??

Now, I'm generally not a fan of BBQ, grilled or smoked chicken, but this was phenomenal. It was cooked all the way through, but still moist and juicy. They didn't need any sauce whatsoever. Just great. Perfect with some greens & bacon. Excellent for leftovers as well.

Would have been even better if it was warmer than 60 degrees outside. Some of you are familiar with what we here in Southern California call "June Gloom/May Gray" - basically maybe the sun peeps out of the low clouds and mist for a few minutes in the afternoon, or maybe not. Much of this weekend was the "maybe not" part of that equation. I know, it's a rough life when we get 72 degrees in January, but when it seems like grilling & BBQ weather but you have to put on a sweatshirt? I know, remind me of this rant when it is 90 in 3 weeks....

Sunday, the sun did peep out, and I felt like with the new range and the new smoker, we had been neglecting our old friend the Char-griller. So I pulled out Mario Batali's Italian Grill for some inspiration, and went with the grilled lamb chops "scottadita" (meaning burnt fingers because you will want to pick them up and eat them) and some grilled artichokes. I really really liked the rub for the lamb - mint, lemon zest, sugar, s&p whirled in the food processor until like coarse sand. It went great with the yogurt & cumin (despite the fact that I didn't buy goat yogurt and didn't toast my own cumin..), which added a "honey" component to the flavors. The artichokes were pretty good, but I didn't really simmer long enough, and they needed more oomph or seasoning (or just plain old butter & mayo, hehe).
The Hitching Post in Buellton & Casmalia in the Central Coast of CA has the BEST grilled artichokes, I need to figure out what it is that is sooooo good (aside from buying their "secret seasoning" of course).

Anyhow, looking forward to another week of the fog - we actually had a bit of drizzle this morning - and the weekend in Los Osos!

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