Sunday, June 18, 2017

Al T's calls with cracklings.

  Winnie was a halfway point when my daughter wanted to meet us for Father’s Day. Al-T’s was suggested and I immediately began planning for cracklings.
                      These Southern bites of heaven are both crispy and soft, fat with fat and a true indulgence. They’re pricy but worth it.
                      Sometimes when I know I’m going to drive through Winnie, I lament that my source will be closed when I’m nearby.
                      Since it was Father’s Day, my husband agreed to this plan: I’d buy them and kind of hide them. Then I’d dole out a few pieces in the mornings to eat with eggs. Maybe there’d be a few for a snack now and then.
                      It was to be a don’t ask/don’t tell situation, so we wouldn’t eat the whole bag at once. He agreed. No contracts necessary.
                      It’s a good plan that hasn’t failed yet.
                      Remember, if you heat them slightly, they get even more soft and tempting.
                      As for the rest of the meal, we shared an “oinker,” which was meat with a blend of crawfish, corn and sausage on top. My daughter had a shrimp poboy and son-in-law ordered fried shrimp. Boudain balls all around preceded this feast.
                      Al-T’s has a new look and new management. If you haven’t been in a while, try it out and then head to the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge for an afternoon of birding, etc.
                      When we arrived at Al-T’s, I was tickled to see a beautiful brown horse in a trailer in the parking lot. We went over to talk to the horse. But we could not get it to respond to our conversation. We were sincerely hoping this horse would give a little winnie, in Winnie.


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Whipped honey for brekfast, hemp pesto for lunch

          Whipped honey: Do you already enjoy the handiness of mixing peanut butter and honey? Try your whipped honey with another nut's butter, say almond or cashew. It will go straight to gourmet. Add something crunchy like walnut crumbles or sunflower seeds, or maybe chocolote nibs and you've hit the top. I accidentally got some red pepper flakes mixed in with my walnuts and that worked, too.

                      Hemp pesto
              Haven’t tried hemp? Here’s a new reason, inspired by a recipe on the back of Carrington Farms’ Ready to Eat Organic Flax Hemp Blend. While the health benefits are printed all over the package (rich in proteins and omega 3’s, easy to digest, etc.) you may be stumped as to how to use it.
                      Everybody does smoothies, what else? I amended the pesto recipe to use the seeds, olive oil and Parmesan cheese, with a friend’s dried basil, to make a thick paste for a bread and egg meal. The seeds replace your pine nuts or walnuts to make a very nice new thing. You can call it a substitute, or simply an new and wonderful thing. Of course, it’s a natural for pasta dishes, too.

                      Good Fortune
                      “In loving one another through our works we bring an increase of grace and growth in divine love.”
                      Where did I get this message? In a bag of popcorn at my credit union. Free snack and free advice. I love the unexpected.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Boudain all day long

Has boudain always been a breakfast food in my mind.
                      My Aunt Mono in Lafayette had a pan of it in little links served on the kitchen table. Of course there was sweet coffee milk for me. I don’t remember other items, besides homemade fig preserves from the giant fig tree out in the yard. I’m sure that fig production area covered an area the size of a New York apartment. I don’t even recall what we put the figs on at that breakfast table.
                      One of my earliest memories of realizing I really liked to eat was as a small child at this table. I took my mom aside and mentioned that the boudain on this visit tasted different than the kind usually served, and I didn’t care for it as much. Mom pointed out that I’d had several servings of this “lesser” boudain anyway.
                      In the ‘80s I noticed boudain being sold more often on a bun, at festivals and other types of events. So boudain became a later-in-the-day treat food.
                      I’m told some people must have their boudain with crackers and I think it’s pretty handy to serve it in a tortilla that just naturally folds around the contours of a link.
                      Then some smart somebody started smoking boudain, producing a crispy skin that I just can’t resist. More festival flair.
                      When my sister comes from Alabama, she arranges to buy boudain in large quantities and get it back home. She bought some and put it in my freezer and reminded everyone to not eat it. Repeatedly!
                      We got a text that she made it home safe, and a message that she had forgotten some of the boudain in my freezer.
                      She told us to enjoy, and my mom said she’d serve it up for our dinner. I understood her to say boudain omelet, meaning boudain folded into the eggs. But she presented boudain and omlet. Just as good.
                      It made a great meal, which we referred to as “breakfast for dinner.”
                      Readers, if you have a passion for how your boudain is best enjoyed, let me know at: