Another fine week it has been! I’ve had some great time with my big boy “Z” and pups Niki and Pico. My dog walker, Dominic, has been on vacation for most of the summer so I’ve had to juggle getting home between lunch and dinner shifts at the Bistro. Whenever I can I’ll walk them first thing in the morning when it is cooler and the deer flies are not so voracious. It’s been difficult to ride outside because too because it is gnat and “bomber” season. “Bombers” is horseback slang for huge, I mean huge, flies that attack horses and bite with a vengeance. For size comparison think 15 normal house flies rolled into one. Mosquitoes are heavy around the Brady woods too. The rain invites them to breed. So, long pants and tops are in order when working in the yard. I’m not afraid of deet and spray myself heavily to protect against them and ticks. With the cooler weather the last few days I’ve been able to get lots of gardening done with little bother from the flying pests. Life is good!
August 10th was Grandma Edick’s, my mom’s mother, birthday. She died in 1979 at 87 years old. She was quite an amazing woman, bearing and raising 10 children in probably the worst economic times ever. She was a visionary when it came to meals. Meat was a luxury and only “cheap” cuts were put on her table. Shanks, hocks and ribs were the norm. Smoked pig’s hocks were the base for bean or pea soup. Short ribs were slowly simmered with onions, carrots and potatoes and lamb shanks the same. Any leftovers were made into stew and served the next day. There was always a big hot breakfast to hold you through the day. Fruits and vegetables, reasonable back then, filled her pantry. The only canned goods were those she “put up.” I remember bushels of tomatoes and peaches on her back porch waiting to be peeled and processed. My grandfather and uncle’s were hunters and fishermen so many times some sort of wild game or fish were part of supper. Mealtime was important, not only for nourishment but also catching up on the day’s happenings. Grandma always smiled. She was truly a happy person. A devote Catholic, she promised to attend daily mass if her son’s returned home safe from war. They did and she never missed a day for the rest of her life. She’d walk to the bus stop on Niagara Street, a main drag in Buffalo, and ride downtown to her favorite church. This was her “social” life too as she became friends with many of the fellow passenger’s that rode the route each day too. I was fortunate to be the one of 50 cousins to inherit her Chamber’s stove. Now nearly 70 years old it is the showpiece of my kitchen. I think of her, my grandfather and my Aunt Betty each time I use it. They were great cooks, my food mentors from an early age. I am proud to be a Certified Executive Chef but much more important to me is that I’m a good cook who learned from the best!
Sharon and Crew have worked their magic once again with the Weekend Chalkboard Features starting with a Colossal Blue Crab Meat Appetizer, tossed with Green Goddess Dressing and Presented over Sliced Tomatoes, Bibb Lettuce and Hard-Boiled Egg Wedges-- this screams 1950. Lake Superior Walleye is Dusted with Cornmeal, Sautéed and served with Welcer Farms Heirloom Tomato Pie and Wilted Greens Drizzled with Jalapeno Apple Cider Vinegar; Grilled Thin Cut Pork Chops are Brushed with a Bourbon-Peach-Basil Butter and Accompanied with Five Cheese Macaroni and Skinny Green Beans; Pan Roasted Red Snapper Presented with Stir-Fried Garlic Broccoli, Roasted Peanut Sauce and Crispy Honey-Sesame Won-Ton Strips and to finish there is a “over 21” Root Beer Float featuring Coney Island Hard Root Beer and Guernsey Vanilla. YUM!
Have A Wonderful Week Everyone!!
And, May Everyday be a Million Dollar One!
WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU AT THE BISTRO!