It’s been a while

About a week to be exact…maybe 8 days. I don’t know. All I do know is that I haven’t made time to sit and update this in a while.

So here we go,

Rotisserie Chicken and Lemon Pepper Potatoes with a side of garlic spinach.

Last Friday night I prepared a couple of recipes out of the Tyler Florence cookbook. I decided to go with the Lemon Garlic Chicken with a side of Lemon Pepper Fingerlings. It was a night at work and I had never used the rotisserie before. I’m sure that no one had used the rotisserie before and I had to spend a good amount of time cleaning the spit before starting to prepare the meal. We had a firefighter, lets call him D, working on the shift for the day. For some reason every time that he is working on B shift we tend to eat later in the evenings, like 9 or 10. I don’t know why the young firefighters have to eat on such a schedule or they act like they are starving and wasting away. Anyway since D was with us of course dinner took forever. He even tried to get things moving early in the afternoon by suggesting we go grab groceries. Looking back perhaps it would have been in his best interest for me not to be experimenting with new cooking techniques on this evening.

So I finally get the spit cleaned and start the grill. I figured I should heat the grill up and it would cut down on the cooking time for the chicken. Which might have been a good plan, except I learned that the rotisserie burner would have heated the cooking area fine by itself, and that leaving one of the burners on underneath the cooking chicken will just start a grease fire and char the outside of your bird a little. Lucky for me I caught it before the chickens were fully cremated. They just ended up a little darker on the outside than the picture of Tyler’s in the book. They tasted really good all the same. Nice juicy meat with hints of lemon and garlic and the thyme that were in the cavity throughout the roasting process. I still think that it would have been amazing if there had been no operator errors on my part. I really want to try this one again and use all the tricks that I learned to make it properly.

Potatoes, potatoes, potatoes. Any one who knows me can attest that potatoes are one of my great loves. You can do so many things with them and they all taste so good when they hit your lips. So I was really excited to cook these fingerling potatoes. According to the recipe they were supposed to be roasted underneath the chicken collecting the juices that fall from the rotisserie. I FOLLOWED WHAT IT SAID. They came out undercooked and way too firm. So I ended up having to throw them in the oven while we started the meal. Even with our time eating the other items the potatoes were just getting cooked when we were cleaning up. They were good, but I would have rather had them as a compliment to the rest of the meal instead of tasting them afterwards. So I believe that when I prepare them next I will give them a partial boil before throwing them in to roast. Then I think they will be great! I did enjoy the light lemon and pepper taste on these and like the chicken want to fix my cooking technique and prepare them the way they should be done.

I need to apologize to JLo and D for making them starve til late and then having the dinner be less than promised. They were good sports and said that they enjoyed it, but I felt guilty not being able to deliver the perfect chicken dinner that they saw in the book.

So I have been spending more than my fair share of time working at the station, which will be great on payday but takes a toll on home life. I have one less day to get my chores done and spend some time with my family. When I did get home for a few days last week Dani and I decided to work on putting together some raised beds to put in a vegetable garden for the year.

Took lots of work to get these in. Hope the dog will stay out of them!

A few trips to the hardware stores, (had to go to more than one after about 3 trips, it just got embarrassing going back and back and back) a truckload of organic soil (apparently the soil of choice of Mendocino “agriculturalists”), backing my truck into the back yard (way closer than I thought it would be) and a whole lot of shoveling. We had our garden beds. I can’t wait to get home and put the plants in and watch some fresh veggies start to grow. There is nothing better than garden fresh produce. Then I will feel comfortable crossing having a garden off the list.

Dani also got some flowers and plants to improve the landscaping of the new place. Hopefully soon I will be tilling up the barren half of the yard and getting some grass growing, and putting some foot gravel down around the garden beds. Gonna be some work, but it’ll be worth it to have an awesome backyard to spend time with family and friends.

A crazy ride...

I was able to polish off another book for #37. I chose to read Youth in Revolt because of the local media attention that was given to the recent movie that was based on this book. The book is largely based in my hometown of Ukiah California and follows the misadventures of a young man named Nick. Nick is a sex-crazed, donut downing teen with an obsession with a young lady that inspires him to become a bad boy…and oh does he become a bad boy. I was really surprised with the amount of sexual material was in the novel, mostly due to the fact that I found it in the young adult section. Most of the book was dedicated to various body parts and practices. It was funny to see how C.D. Payne portrayed my town, but now I am mostly interested in how they made it into a movie. It was a really crazy book and the movie cannot be too true to the original material.

Another reason for the extended lack of blogging was the continuing saga for my unexpected opportunity that The Cartman and I stumbled into. I don’t want to give out too much here, but we could be getting really big news soon.

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