Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Ahhh, Meat.

Humans are omnivores. My family definitely leans on the carnivore side of omnivore. We like meat.

I've been enjoying hitting up the bbq out back this summer. Each year I seem to get more adventurous in my cooking, and I am really enjoying the results (and so are our digestive tracts). I know that this year has seen me take a leap or two, and I do attribute that to having purchased most of an animal instead of the usual cut at a time. It has put some items in my chilly box that I normally would not get, thus stretching my cooking repertoire. It has been fun learning to wait.

and wait some more.

Check the meat.

Wait. Baste it. Wait.

Check it one last time, and......


(Country style ribs, rubbed, smoked and sauced)

I'm not one to follow a recipe. I'll look them up to get ideas, mesh a few together and see what happens. Tweak the next time if needed. So you can see why slow cooking some meat over a fire and some hunks of wood would appeal to me. Not only does it hearken back to the primitive and carnal nature of man, but it is also an art form. There is no exact a+b+c leads to d,e and f. Let the meat rest, season it, build and maintain the fire, check at the right moments, guess, feel. That's cooking.

Where the fun comes in is the kids asking what kind of animal I just put on their plate. No, silly, not because it is in such an unrecognizable form on the plate, but because they are curious and still learning. Usually an answer of pig, cow or chicken suffices, but occasionally we will get into the more exact cut. Our answer will prompt an affirmative response from the kids; I believe that they would eat anything that I have pulled off of the grill.

So, now that we have established the joy of cooking and the kids' curiosity and response, here is a tale from the summer.

Steph is at the State Fair with the kids. This usually involves going over two different days to see the various exhibits for the kids and also tour the animal showings. So as they are walking through the barns and passing some prize winning swine, Ian looks up and exclaims, "I like pig!". I'm sure the farmer thought this cute kid likes the animal and is sharing this with his mother. Reality: he's hungry.

Pork chop, anyone?

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