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Random Summer Cooking

I think we had a tomato caprese salad, roasted corn and korean barbeque (bool kogi)



Above: caprese salad with garden- fresh tomatoes.


We made it look pretty.


Grilling up some delicious corn



We substituted in a burrata instead of fresh mozzarella.



The corn turned out delicious and roasty.


And the korean short ribs (bool kogi) were beefy.


Blueberry Pie

Description to come.

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What do you eat rafting?

What do you eat camping?

One sees quite the variety of foods camping. My Mom and I pull out all the stops. On our last trip to the Kern River this weekend, we prepared quite a feast, in my opinion.


As soon as we got to camp we got a fire going and our dutch oven heating up.

Into the dutch oven went some heirloom beans, which we had prepped the night before at the house.


In there you see some onions, bacon and plenty of beans.


We had some delicious, juicy tri-tip.


As well as some corn and grilled ciabatta, onto which we rubbed fresh tomatoes, in the spanish manner.


Above: the ciabatta with tomatoes


The beans turned out pretty delicious, if not gorgeous. They developed this amazingly deep, delicious flavor that was quite rich. I really loved them.


And what is a camping trip without some lucious, delicious berry cobbler, cooked in a dutch oven over the dying embers of a fire?


While we did need to get out quite early, that didn’t stop my scout master Ken and I from whipping up some breakfast burritoes.


And that was the trip! We had an amazing time and the food was, of course, amazing.

Iced over

This is an ongoing series of posts chronicling my “rock ‘n roll catering” days…there’s no nutritional value.


These were always fun…kinda. One of the few events that utilized “in-house” catering, i.e., from the Scheman Building. I ended up doing four or five of these at the height of the “ice skating” craze of the 90s. “Champions on Ice” founder and promoter, Tom Collins, spared no cost in making sure a whole bunch of young, spolied skaters from Russia were comfortable and entertained all day. Seriously, entire billiard tables were toted around with their usual production! Viktor Petrenko, Michelle Kwan and Oksana Baiul were all associated with the event. What I’ll always remember is:

1) Tom’s son, Marty Collins, was an arrogant, spoiled brat in his own right. He walked into catering, came up to me and sternly said, “I’m Marty Collins, I make all of this happen.” Perhaps, but he couldn’t spell to save his life – the rider he gave me was ladden with grammatical errors and misspellings the likes of a second grade teacher seldom sees.


2) I always played music during dinner. The year Oksana was on tour, I had one of my favorite bands, LYCIA (the album wasEstrella) , spinning in the CD player in the background. She commented on the music as she smiled at me while leaving her dining table; though it was in Russian and I had no idea what she may have said, it seemed pleasant.

My Summer So Far





My Birthday!



Home made tortillas







A reason to plant…

garden 005

Okay, so there’s more than JUST one reason to plant a garden. It’s economical for sure. Free of harsh pesticides? You betcha. Another is the sweet contest fellow, and FAR superior, blogger/culinary author Michael Ruhlman is hosting on his site this summer. The “BLT From Scratch Challenge” is a call for entries to those who can put together the best interpretation of an all-American classic. Garden raised veggies, home-cured bacon/pancetta, made-from-scratch bread etc. Winners will be awarded one of Michael’s titles allegedly “signed in bacon fat.” All of the rules, categories and details can be found at Ruhlman’s site. Hopefully everyone has a lush, blossoming garden already. If not, it’s not too late! Turn that soil, get some dirt under your nails and turn those thumbs green!

Phish…still smells


This show was at Hilton Coliseum in Ames in the winter if I remember correctly. I think this was a Bellybusters gig. I don’t remember a whole lot about this night other than I left early due to an ice storm…I think. This was also my first “jam band” run-in. I can respect bands like Phish for their technical proficiency and free-wheelin’ approach, but it’s just not for me. I think of Phish and all I can smell is weed and B.O. Ugh….This was a clever pass though.