Friday, April 22, 2016

I'm Dyin' For Daddy D'z BBQ, Atlanta GA

With the number of times we've been to Atlanta, I can't tell you how many times we've passed Daddy D'z and I've wondered why we never stop in. Before this last trip, I was looking for new places to eat and found Daddy D'z on multiple "Best BBQ in Atlanta" lists. I decided that before we did anything else on this trip, we were going to Daddy D'z to eat.

We pulled in at 1, and the parking lot was packed and filled with the smell of deliciousness and smoke.

I went with the sampler plate (we should have split), which comes with 6 Que Wraps, 2 Ribs, Beef, and Pork with 1 side and cornbread or roll.

The Que Wraps are pulled pork wrapped in wonton wrappers and deep fried that you take a dip into BBQ sauce. If that sounded amazing, it's because they were. It's like bite size BBQ crack. I could have eaten a plate of just those.

The beef and pork were both pulled in long strands hiding under the ribs soaking up all of yummy goodness dripping off of them. The ribs were absolutely delicious and sloppy messy like ribs should be.

The ribs, pork, and beef were all very good, the Que Wraps were absolutely killer, but the macaroni and cheese absolutely blew my mind. It was like a mixture of that country meat and 3 restaurant with black pepper and it seemed like a little smoke. This is top 5 best mac n cheeses that I've ever had in a restaurant. 

Their motto is, "We Ain't Pretty But We're Good" ... that is not a lie.

Their sauce was a little heavier on the vinegar sauce than I prefer, but the food was on point.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Our New Backyard

Back before Dirt Mountain happened, I wanted to put a cover over the cooking area and build out a deck/patio with a dinning area and fire pit. Well, to stay in the political world, I didn't have enough delegates and my idea was vetoed.

As the new year came around, we started talking about the patio idea again. The original idea was that we would do the project in parts. First would be the cooking area, then we'd do the dinning area, and finish up with the fire pit section. After some discussion we decided to bite the bullet and complete the project in whole so we can actually enjoy it this year.

Day 1 - Post holes cut and footers installed for the cover's posts.

Day 2 - Met with the guy doing the stone patio portion to finalize the layout and all of the details.

Day 3 through 13 - No progress due to finishing other jobs, weather, and sick kids (see, no project goes smoothly for us)

Day 14 - Patio guys bring tools over, mark off new patio area, and remove 3 quarters of the original patio.

Photos courtesy of our security cameras.

Day 15 - Old patio is completely removed and space graded.

Dirt Mountain just won't leave us alone.

Day 16 - The first block is laid down, and ultimately turns into our future step (top not completely). They also laid down and compacted most of the gravel.

Day 17 - No progress due to rain.

Day 18-19 - Weekend off

Day 20 - The rest of the foundation has been laid out and compacted.

Day 21 - They're leveling the area, and hopefully will be putting some pavers out.

Day 22 - They start where they left off. Pavers should be finished up today.

The patio is nearly laid out, and fire pit has be put in place.

Day 23 - The patio is basically completely laid out with step and fire pit in place. Just waiting to be set into place and caps for the step and fire pit. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Bourbon & Cherry Giant Pigs In A Blanket

A few weeks back we made a trip down to Charleston to see Garth Brooks, and while we were there we visited the local Farmers Market. We're lucky enough that during warm weather seasons it's just outside of our hotel ... literally, you walk out of the side door and within 15 feet, you're in the back of someone's tent.

The last few times we've been, we've said that we should bring a cooler, but of course, we forget every time. Well, not this time my friends (although I did didn't get the size cooler I wanted). We were originally looking for Rio Bertolini, who makes the best pasta you can find, but I demanded that while we were there we had to look for Meathouse Butcher too. We first fell in love with Rio Bertolini when we picked up a few boxes of ravioli when they came up to Greenville's farmers market. Meathouse Butcher has been at the Charleston farmers market every time we go, but again ... never had a cooler to bring it home in.

We pulled up to the farmers market and the very first 2 booths were Meathouse Butcher and Rio Bertolini. I'm 99% sure that as we pulled into the drive we each heard angels sing AAAAHHHHHHHHH!

We walked away with 3 boxes of ravioli from Rio Bertolini, a pack of Jalapeno-Hickory Bacon, a pack of Boudin Sausage, and a pack of their Bourbon & Cherry Pork Sausage.

We had been debating on what to actually do with the sausages, but then we were watching American Diner Revival one night and Amanda Freitag made a pig in the blanket with a full sausage link for one of the diners. As were were watching it, we both turned and looked at each other and said, "oooh that's what we can do with the Bourbon & Cherry sausage!"

So here we are ... a Bourbon & Cherry Giant Pig in a Blanket.

We took the 2 full sausage links.

Seared them in a cast iron pan.

Kind of use the technique of doing a wellington, and put them in the fridge for a few minutes. Once they were out, we rolled them up in puff pastries. We cut the excess off and pressed the extra pieces together for pig #2. No need in using 2 sheets and wasting the excess.

Rolled them up and placed them on a baking pan.

Rubbed the top with some melted butter, then added onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, basil, chives, and smoked pepper. Then put it in a preheated over at 400 for 20 minutes (we originally did 15, but then put them back in for another 5 to finish up).

Once they came out ... pure amazingness ...

I'm so good, I actually made my cut right on one of the real cherries.

We're debating if we can talk Rio Bertonlini's people into bringing up some Meathouse sausage when they visit the Greenville fresh market this Summer. I will DEFINITELY be taking a larger cooler when we visit Charleston again, and we will DEFINITELY be making these again.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Peanut Butter Dog Bone Treats

Yes, you read that right. Rhett is now so spoiled that we make him special treats and I'm posting the recipes on my blog. For those out there that aren't dog lovers, I'm sorry. For those out there that are dog lovers ... I'm really not sorry, and you're welcome.

2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oats
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 cup room temperature creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup grated Parmesan

Be careful with the peanut butter, there's a lot of changes being made to peanut butter that's making it not safe for pets. Check yours to make sure that it doesn't include Xylitol.

Preheat your oven to 375. Combine the flour, oats and baking powder, and then stir in the broth and peanut butter until it turns into a dough.

Lightly flour your work surface and knead the dough for 30 seconds until it's smooth. Roll the dough out till it's about 1/2 inch thick, and cut your cookies out.

Place the bones onto a baking sheet with cooking spray or parchment paper, and sprinkle the Parmesan on top.

Bake for 20 minutes or until light brown. Transfer to a wire rack so they can cool off, and then make your little guy or girl love you even more.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Drunk Banana French Toast

For the New Year, I felt like we needed a breakfast that'd help numb that hangover everyone has today.

We have brioche french toast with a loaded banana sauce.

Whisk together 3 large eggs, 4 large egg yolks, and 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar until it's smooth.

Then whisk in a cup of milk, half cup of heavy cream, and 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon and vanilla extract.

Make 1/2 inch thick slices of your bread. Notice my fancy new ceramic knife I got for Christmas.

To cook the french toast, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Once melted, place your bread into the batter on both sides until it's soaked. Then move the bread to the saute pan and cook for about 2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
(If you need to keep some slices warm, put them on a baking sheet in your oven at 250 degree)

The sauce is really easy, and can be done at the same time as the toast.

First, melt 4 tablespoons of butter over high heat. Once it is melted, whisk in 1 cup of light brown sugar and  a pinch of ground cinnamon until the sugar has melted and it has thickened, approximately 5 minutes.

Add 2 sliced ripe bananas and cook until slightly softened ... a minute.

Remove from the heat and add 2 tablespoons of banana liqueur and 1/2 cup of dark rum or whisky if you don't have rum (mini bottles work as perfect substitutions). Add the sauce back to the heat for about 2 more minutes (your choice) to cook the alcohol off.

This was sweet, but the alcohol helped cut the sweetness and give you that kick to get your day going.