Pulled Pork

1 pork shoulder
apple juice
Worcestershire sauce
molasses or maple syrup
prepared mustard
pork rub (like 3-4 oz Spade L Ranch combined with 1-lb brown sugar)
apple wood pellets

Combine enough apple juice, Worcestershire sauce, and molasses (or maple syrup) [all to taste] to marinate pork shoulder (plus 1-2 cups reserved).  Marinate for 2-3 hours [or, inject the marinade into the pork].  Pat dry and coat with a thin coating of prepared mustard and then liberally coat all sides of the pork shoulder with rub.  Rest for about one hour to allow meat to approach room temperature and rub to begin to flavor the pork.

Preheat pellet smoker/grill to 180º; place pork shoulder on grill, fat side down.  When pork shoulder reaches an internal temperature of approximately 160º, tightly wrap in foil after adding a small amount of the apple juice marinade.  Increase the heat of the pellet grill to 225º.  Cook until internal temperature of pork shoulder reaches 195-200º.  Remove from grill and place in an insulated container for 30 plus minutes.  Shred pork shoulder and serve with rolls and coleslaw.

(Note: You can also finish the foil wrapped pork in an oven preheated to 225º until the internal temperature of 195-200º is reached and continue as outlined above.)

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Shrimp Ceviche

2 lbs shrimp, shelled and deveined
2 tomatoes
1/2 onion, diced
1 can (4 oz) diced jalapeño
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup lime juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper, freshly ground
2 avocados, diced
1 tbsp olive oil

Place shrimp in rapidly boiling water for about 45 seconds and then immediately submerge in cool water to stop the cooking.  Combine all ingredients except avocado and olive oil in a ziplock bag and refrigerate for 3 hours.  Add avocados and olive oil and stir just before serving.

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Peppered Beef Jerky

1 bottle (12-oz) dark beer
1 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp Morton Tender Quick Curing Salt
1/2 tsp garlic salt
2 tbsp ground black pepper
2 lbs beef, thinly sliced

Combine all ingredients except beef and pour into a large Ziploc bag; add beef.  Refrigerate overnight.

Remove the beef from the marinade.  Dry the beef with paper towels. Sprinkle the beef slices generously on both sides with more pepper. Arrange the meat in a single layer the grill grate. Smoke for 4 to 5 hours at 150º, or until the jerky is dry but still chewy and somewhat pliable when bent. Transfer to a fresh Ziploc bag while the jerky’s still warm. Let the jerky rest for an hour at room temperature. Squeeze any air from the bag, and refrigerate the jerky.

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Apple Barbecue Sauce

This is a work in progress…

2 cans (6-oz ea) tomato paste
3 cups apple juice
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup apple sauce
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
2 tbsp molasses
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp vinegar
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp chili sauce (1 tsp Chiplotle Chili Powder)
2 tsp liquid smoke
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp mustard powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp Tahitian vanilla
1/2 tsp ginger powder
1/2 tsp galangal (or more ginger powder)
(1 tbsp honey)

In a saucepan, combine all ingredients and simmer until reduced to desired consistency.

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1-3 Rib Racks
Brown Sugar
Spice Rub
Yellow Mustard
Apple Juice
Worcestershire Sauce

Rinse ribs and pat dry with paper towels. If the membrane on the concave side of the ribs wasn’t removed by the butcher, use the handle of a spoon to open a space between the ribs and the membrane and remove.

In a mixing bowl, stir together spice rub and brown sugar (proportions to taste).  Apply an extremely light coating of mustard to the ribs (the mustard is for adhesion, not flavor).  Coat the concave side of each of the rib racks with the rub mixture. Flip the first rack and coat the convex side, being sure to coat the sides and ends. Repeat this process with the remaining racks and stack. Once all racks are thoroughly coated, wrap in foil and refrigerate for 1-3 hours.

Combine apple juice, Worcestershire sauce, molasses, and honey (to taste) and use this combination to spritz the ribs from time to time during the cooking process.

Remove rib racks from the refrigerator 30 to 45 minutes prior to smoking. Heat the grill to 180°; place rib racks on the pellet grill, concave side down, and smoke for approximately three hours.

Remove from grill and increase grill temperature to 225°. Wrap ribs in foil, adding a small amount of the apple juice mixture; return to grill for approximately 2 hours. Check for doneness.  For fall off the bone tender ribs (technically overcooked), increase the cooking time while in foil. Remove foil and return to grill for approximately one hour, using your favorite barbecue sauce to glaze the ribs (if desired).

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Dr Pepper Barbecue Sauce

1 bottle (20-oz) Dr Pepper
2 cups ketchup
1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ginger powder
1/4 tsp galanga powder (or substitute an additional 1/4 tsp ginger)

Combine all ingredients and boil until thickened.  Root beer or cola could be substituted for Dr Pepper.

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Dan Dan Noodles

1 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp sambal oelek
1 Tbsp garlic, minced
1 Tbsp ginger, minced
2 green onions, sliced
1 lb chicken or turkey, ground and cooked
2 pkgs fresh egg noodles, cooked
corn starch

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup ketjap manis
1 cup cooking wine
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp fish sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp sugar
3 1/2 cups chicken broth

Heat wok; add oil. Sear sambal oelek, garlic, ginger, and green onion for 5 seconds to release flavors.  Add cooked ground chicken; sear, stirring and tossing for 5 to 10 seconds.

Add all sauce ingredients. Simmer for 20 seconds. Add egg noodles to boiling water and heat for 5 to 10 seconds. Remove noodles from water and place in strainer. Move to serving plate.

Thicken chicken and sauce with a mixture of corn starch and water (equal parts). Consistency should be a very thick sauce to stand on top of the noodles. Pour over center of noodles. Garnish with bean sprouts and julienned cucumbers.

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Beef and Green Beans

1-2 lbs thinly sliced beef
fresh green beens

3 Tbsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp katjap manis
1 tsp hoisin sauce
1 tsp oyster sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp white pepper

1/2 cup chicken broth
1 Tbsp ketchup
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
2 tsp sugar

Wok Prep
vegetable oil
1 onion, cut into chunks
1 red bell pepper, cut into chunks
1 tsp garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, minced
1/2 tsp sambal
1 Tbsp black bean sauce
rice wine

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Sweet Potatoes

4 cups cooked mashed sweet potatoes
1 cup white sugar
4 eggs beaten
1 1/5 cube butter melted
2 cups half-and-half
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves

3 cups corn flakes not crushed
2 cups chopped pecans
2 cups light brown sugar packed
3 cups melted butter

Combine sweet potato ingredients; pour into 9×13 pan and bake for 30 minutes at 375° to 400°. Remove from oven. Combine topping ingredients and spread over sweet potatoes. Return to oven and bake an additional 10 to 12 minutes. Serve hot.

(Revised Dec 2015)


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Candied Apples

3/4 cup water
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 tsp red food coloring
1 tsp cinnamon flavoring
6-8 apples

In a saucepan, combine all ingredients except apples.  Bring to boil over high heat; reduce heat to medium-high and boil until temperature reaches 290°.  Push wooden sticks into clean, dry apples and dip apples into mixture to coat.  Place on silpat to cool.

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Mushroom Bisque

MushroomBisque1 onion, diced
2 lbs fresh mushrooms, sliced
chicken stock
half and half
chicken stock
lg bay leaf
sambal oelek (optional)

In a large frying pan, melt butter; add onion and mushrooms.  As mushrooms cook down and begin to release moisture, add sherry and chicken stock; cover.  In another pan, make a rue from butter and +/-3 heaping tbsp flour; cook until golden.  Stir in half and half.  Once combined, stir in juice from mushrooms.  Place 2/3 to 3/4 of mushrooms in food processor and process thoroughly (adding stock if necessary).  Pour processed mushrooms and remaining sauteed mushrooms into soup mixture; add a small pinch of thyme, bay leaf, and sambal.

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Prime Rib

PrimeRib1 prime rib roast
prime rib seasoning

Remove prime rib from refrigerator at least two hours prior to cooking.  Rub exterior with prime rib seasoning; let stand for at least one hour.  Place in a 500° oven for 20 minutes; reduce heat to 325° and cook until interior temperature reaches +/- 120°.  Remove from oven and allow the prime rib to rest for at least 30 minutes before slicing (internal temperature should reach about 130°).  First slice ribs from the roast and then slice roast and serve.

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Ginger Caramel Pork Belly

Caramel Ginger Pork Belly2 slabs pork belly
dried minced onion
1-1/2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup fish sauce
2 tbsp ketjap manis
1 tbsp, grated
1/4 cup mirin
2 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp sambal oelek
2 bunches green onion, roughly chopped

Liberally sprinkle pork belly with dried minced onion on all sides; wrap tightly in two layers of foil.  Place in a loaf pan or 9×13 and roast in the oven for 5½ hours at 200˚.  Turn off the heat and allow the pork belly to cool for 2 hours in the oven; refrigerate overnight.

In a mixing bowl, combine brown sugar, vinegar, fish sauce, soy sauce, and ginger.  Brown pork bellies on top and bottom. Remove pork bellies and pour in mirin to deglaze the pan. Cut pork bellies into chunks and return to pan with about 1/4 of the sauce mixture and caramelize.  Add remaining sauce mixture, garlic, and sambal; cook until sauce coats a spoon.  Add green onions and continue cook until they are the desired donenes.  Serve over rice.

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Baked Beans

BakedBeans1 lb navy beans
1 cup brown sugar
4 tsp dry mustard
1/4 cup molasses
2 tbsp ketchup
1 tsp liquid smoke
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
1 lg onion, diced
1 bell pepper, diced
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 lb thick sliced bacon, cut into pieces and fried

Soak dry beans for 8 hours or overnight; drain. Place beans in saucepan and add water to 1 inch above beans. Heat to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Pour contents of the saucepan into crockpot. Add remaining ingredients and cook on low for 8 hours or until beans are tender. Water can be added during the cooking process, if necessary.

Pressure cooker version: 2 cups dry beans, 32 oz chicken broth, and remaining ingredients (except bacon) in pressure cooker. Cook on bean setting (high pressure) for 40 minutes. Add bacon.

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Zucchini Cobbler

This tastes a lot like apple cobbler and is a great way to use some of the zucchini from the garden.  

12 cups zucchini (seeded, peeled and sliced)
1 cup lemon juice
1 1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp nutmeg

4 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups cold butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup pecans, crushed (optional)

In a large saucepan over medium-low heat, cook zucchini and lemon juice for +/-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until zucchini is tender.  Add remaining filling ingredients; cook for five minutes.  Set aside.

Combine flour and sugar; cut in butter.  Stir 3/4 cup into zucchini mixture.  Press half of the curst mixture into a greased 9×13 baking dish.  Spread zucchini mixture over crust.  In remaining crust mixture, stir in pecans (optional) and sprinkle over zucchini mixture.  Dust with cinnamon.

Bake at 375° for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.

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Hamburger Sauce

1 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp catchup
1 tbsp chili sauce
1 tsp white vinegar
1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
1/4 cup dill pickle relish
1/2 cup sautéed onions
2 tsp agave sweetener
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ketjap manis

Combine all ingredients.  Refrigerate for several hours before using.

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Hoisin Salmon Glaze

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1 tbsp sambal oelek
1 tbsp ketjap manis
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp olive oil

In a 9×13 baking dish, whisk together all ingredients.  Marinate salmon for +/-30 minutes (15 minutes on each side) prior to baking at 375°.

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2-3 cups fresh basil leaves
4 cloves garlic
3/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process into a paste.

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Braised Fennel

image1-3 bulbs fennel
butter or olive oil
14 oz chicken stock

Slice fennel into sections and lightly brown edges in butter or olive oil; braise in chicken stock until soft.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

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Creamy Cauliflower Soup

image1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp butter
salt to taste
1 head cauliflower, chopped
1 qt chicken stock
1⁄2 cup heavy whipping cream
nutmeg to taste
cayenne pepper to taste
In a sauce pan, combine butter, onions, garlic and salt; sweat over low heat. Once the onions are translucent, add cauliflower and chicken stock; bring to boil and then reduce heat and simmer until cauliflower is completely softened (about 30 minutes). Use emersion blender to blend mixture to a creamy consistency. Stir in cream, nutmeg and cayenne (just a small sprinkle of each; too much nutmeg or cayenne will overpower this soup).
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