Once again, another blast from my past during my days on St Thomas, US Virgin Isle...
THESE WERE AMAZING!
I got an order from Amazon.com over the weekend. In addition to a couple of murder mysteries, I ordered a couple of cook books that I have had on my wish list for a long time. Why, you may ask (oh wait, that's not you, that's my wife asking), am I ordering 10 pounds of books when I have to get them back to the states in only a couple of weeks?
Well, in order to get free shipping on the two paperback murder mysteries I was really ordering, I needed to order just one more book. I just couldn't decide which I wanted more. So, in the words of my wife, "When we have to pay a fee for over weight luggage, that free shipping will be pretty expensive".
What a killjoy.
So... The only way to justify this weighty extravagance is to cook from the books before I leave. And just a sample of the bacon was enough to make my wife agree that I was a wise man. Wise beyond my years. She practically worshiped at my feet with each bite. If her mouth wasn't full, she would have sang my praises to the island. And for any husband out there who believes any of that, I have a bridge in the Virgin Islands to sell you.
But she did like the bacon, she just ate it with a superior tilt of the head. You know how you women get.
So, let's talk Bobby Flay and the MESA GRILL Cookbook...
WHAT A BEAUTIFUL BOOK! In all seriousness, I am working on my presentations. I even got a complement or two recently on how my photographed food looks. Bobby's Mesa Cookbook has an illustration for most of the dishes, and every one is worthy of a magazine cover.
WHAT A USEFUL BOOK! Again, in all seriousness, Tex-Mex, southwestern cuisine is not a specialty of mine in any sense of the word. The fist 20 pages of the book has ingredient list, definitions, pantry stocking tips and basic techniques explained clearly and in a handy place to find when you run across a term or ingredient you are not familiar with. While the recipes are a bit exotic and many of the ingredients are not in my standard pantry; I can envision at least an attempt to follow the directions armed with the first 20 pages. He even has a section to help you find some of the more exotic ingredients.
WHAT A COLLECTION OF RECIPES! If you watch Bobby on the Food Network, you have probably seen his Throwdown show, or maybe his Grillin' It with Bobby Flay show. When I watch these, I always get the impression that he wants you to succeed. His choices for chapters and recipes continues to give that impression. In addition to the 20 pages of basics, he has chapters on sauces, relishes and vinaigrettes; Drinks, soups, salads and even a terrific section on Brunch (breakfast) dishes.
Which is where I found this gem...
1 cup Sugar
1 cup Red Wine Vinegar
1 ripe Mango, pealed, pitted and coarsely chopped
1 TBS Honey
1 pound thick sliced Bacon
Salt and Pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 375
- Combine sugar and vinegar in a small sauce pan and cook over high heat until the sugar is melted. Add the mango and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is reduced by half and the mango is soft, 5 to 6 minutes.
- Transfer the mixture to a food processor and process until smooth. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Add the honey and season with the Salt and Pepper.
- Place the bacon on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and brush the bacon on both sides with the glaze. Bake, brushing the bacon with more glaze every few minutes until golden brown and just crisp, 10 to 12 minutes
You'll have to come back tomorrow to see my recipe for Mango Glazed bacon wrapped Sea Scallops. And I have a few more ideas with what to do with more of this candy bacon!
Just as pretty as you can imagine, but more importantly, it is like bacon candy, sweet, salty and lick your lips GOOD EATS (ooops, that's the other book (the really heavy one), and a discussion for another day)
The book retails for $35 (save over $10), is full size, full color, LOTS of full page photo illustrations. Worth every dime!
It's the most important meal of the day. From fancy to simple, there are always ways to dress up a breakfast dish. These are the meals that make Bed and Breakfast Inns legendary (and usually easier than you think).
Here's your chance to make your guests Ooh and Aah!
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