Reap what you Sow

80 degrees and no humidity, a few billowy clouds grace the brilliant blue sky.  It’s a perfect summer day in Hartford, and the destination is the Billings Forge Farmers Market.  The only thing better than taking in a local farmers market to load up on fresh produce and other sundries is getting the chance to entertain the crowd.  That’s what The Grimm Generation had the good fortune to do this week .  For along with area farmers, vendors and artists; local music is a part of the scene here too.  It’s a fine way to while away an afternoon and a prime destination for purchasing what’s in season.  Jason and I left with three grocery bags loaded with eggplant, pears, cantaloupe, coffee (ooh, coffee), onions, potatoes, zucchini, peppers and home made bread kindly donated by the market’s merchants.  When we returned home, I knew exactly what was for dinner.

Ratatouille (It’s not just a movie about rats)Ratatouille

  • 1 eggplant, cut into one inch pieces
  • 2 zucchini, cut into one inch pieces
  • 1 1/2 cup green beans, stems removed
  • 1 1/2 onions, sliced
  • 1 green pepper, cut into one inch pieces
  • 1 red pepper, cut into one inch pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 14.5 oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 bay leaf
  • teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • salt & pepper*
  • Parmesan cheese

*Make sure to remember to season each layer of vegetables that you saute.

  1. Let the eggplant and zucchini rest in a colander for 30 minutes to draw out excess moisture, blot dry.
  2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, saute eggplant and zucchini in olive oil until golden, about 12 minutes.  Remove from pan.
  3. In same pan over medium heat, add green beans, onions, peppers and garlic and saute until softened but not brown.
  4. Return eggplant and zucchini to pan.
  5. Add can of tomatoes, bay leaf and thyme
  6. Reduce heat and let simmer for 20 minutes
  7. Stir in basil and serve with sprinkled Parmesan cheese and crusty bread.

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The Drinkers Companion Guide to Your F***ed Up Summer – Week 6 Recipes

Slow Language is a beautifully aching love song written and sung by Jason P. Krug.  In his honor, I created the Slow Language Cocktail which includes Sambuca, the alcoholic beverage of choice on the rare occasion Jason does imbibe.  The sweet anise flavored liqueur is a great compliment to the smoky and mellow components of Cafe Patron.  Drink more than one of these and I assure you, your language will become slow.

Slow Language

Slow Language

  • 2 ounces Cafe Patron Tequila
  • 1 ounce Black Sambuca
  1. Fill low ball glass with ice.
  2. Add Cafe Patron and Sambuca and stir.

Your friends will wonder what’s in this delightfully sweet, tart and tangy inebriant.  It’s up to you whether or not you want to keep it to yourself or share.

Keep It (Like A Secret Recipe) Cocktail

Keep It (Like a Secret Recipe)

  • 1 1/2 ounce Dragon Berry Bacardi Rum
  • 1 ounce Fragoli Strawberry Liqueur
  • 1/4 ounce Amaretto Liqueur
  • 1/4 ounce Southern Comfort
  • splash of sour mix
  • splash of cranberry
  1. Add all ingredients to ice-filled cocktail shaker.
  2. Shake and strain into martini glass.

Wonder why it was The Last Record Party?  These were being served.  The cupboards were cleaned out for this cocktail.  It sounds like an odd combination but makes for a really smooth and none too sugary beverage.  The shiny, black color is pure vinyl, baby.  “Shimmy and shake!  Stutter and break!  Leave it all on the dance floor!”

The Last Record Party Cocktail

The Last Record Party Cocktail

  • 1/4 ounce Stoli vodka
  • 1/4 ounce Bacardi rum
  • 1/4 ounce Tangueray gin
  • 1/4 ounce Sauza Tequila
  • 1/4 ounce Triple sec
  • 1/4 ounce Stoli Raspberry vodka
  • 1/4 ounce Southern Comfort bourbon
  • 1/4 ounce Amaretto liqueur
  • 1/4 ounce Blue Curacao
  • 1/4 ounce Southern Comfort Peach liqueur
  • 1/4 ounce Chambord Raspberry Liqueur
  • Splash of brandy
  • Splash of sour mix
  • Splash of cola
  1. Add all ingredients to ice-filled cocktail shaker.
  2. Shake and strain into martini glass

Thanks for tuning in these last few weeks.  I’ve had a lot of fun coming up with all these cocktail creations.  Hope you have enjoyed making one or two.  Now, perhaps it’s time to give up drinking for six weeks.  Hey…isn’t that a song?

Remember Folks: Drink responsibly.  Listen responsibly.

http://www.thegrimmgeneration.com

Canada Rocks!

Celebrating Canada Day (a little late) with some childhood favorites courtesy of me mum and dad who brought treats back from their weekend visit to their hometown in PQ. Best item in the lot is the bag of Canadian cheddar cheese curds.  Cheese curds, also known as Squeaky Cheese have a soft and moist texture that, upon taking a bite, makes a squeaking sound in your mouth.  It’s a really nice mild cheese that melts incredibly well.  You can snack on it right out of the bag or add it to a plate of spaghetti and sauce or a bowl of tomato vegetable soup or any variety of dishes where melted gooey cheese would be an enhancement.  Tonight we will be making Poutine for dinner,

Yum Yum salt & vinegar chips, Jos Louis and Ah Caramel snack cakes and Canadian Cheese Curds

a traditional Canadian dish served in most restaurants and made at home too.  The melange of french fries, gravy and cheese makes for a perfect dish of simple comfort food.

Poutine

  • french fries
  • poutine gravy mix (or brown gravy mix)
  • Canadian cheddar cheese curds
  1. Cook fries according to package directions.  Or make them homemade for a more authentic experience.
  2. Cook gravy mix according to package directions
  3. Layer fries and cheese in a bowl and pour gravy atop.
  4. Mmmm.

The Drinker’s Companion Guide to the Soundtrack of your F***ed Up Summer

The Last Record Party available at http://www.thegrimmgeneration.com

If you’re going to make poor decisions, lower your inhibitions and have a full-fledged fucked up summer then you’re going to need cocktails. This makes the whole unseemly business much easier and really speeds up the whole process. With that in mind, I’ve created some recipes for some tasty libations for the season of excess.
Now, I don’t know about you but I try to keep my caloric intake on the low side when imbibing. This helps keep my weight down and keeps my options open with scoring with the more superficial cads out there. Also, I’d rather chew my calories than drink them. So you won’t find any recipes for ice cream drinks or over the top sugary concoctions. What you will find are interesting and unique drinks that will refresh you during the hot summer months.
So starting on Sunday, my six part series will bring you three different cocktail recipes weekly inspired and named after the songs on our CD, The Last Record Party. Along with the recipe, perhaps I’ll spin a tale or divulge a secret or two about the song. Join me, won’t you?
See you soon, and until then…cheers!