Blessed I am.
Blessed with time this holiday season.
So I made my gifts. They came from the kitchen primarily. I feel good about that.
I would feel better if my sewing machine wasn't at the very back of the spare room's closet. Next year. I mean as in January 2011, I will find that hunk of metal and figure out how to sew because I really want to make these hand towels in fun funky colors.
I also want to race road bikes.
And get a job......
My Dad has become a fantastic little "kitchen bitch" these days. He has ventured out of his comfort zone of tried and true ribs, hamburgers, fried potatoes, steak... you get the idea. In the last few years he has purchased a meat grinder and makes his own ground beef and pork. I can get behind that. Over the summer I popped in to soak up some of the beach house goodness and he had made these delightful crab cake/sandwich thingys which consisted of crab salad, cheese, more cheese, a slice of home grown tomato, atop an open faced English muffin, finished under the broiler. Wow. He also sent me home with strawberry jam one day. Last time a bag of beef jerky from the smoker. Need I say more?
When I sit with him at the table, drinking coffee, I see his mom, my grandma Carol, shining through.
I am blessed.
My Dad was the easiest and most intriguing person to come up with a gift for. He would be into anything. He loves to grill all summer, I take that back all year, he keeps his grill under cover making it possible to cook outdoors in what seems like 300 days of rain that Bellingham gets a year.
I trolled the web and found a BBQ sauce recipe from Smitten Kitchen. Um yeah, the obsession continues.
The perfect gift for the men in my family!
Ina Garten’s Barbecue Sauce
Adapted from her Food Network show
This is a tangy, subtly spicy, delicious barbecue sauce. You can freeze it in one cup containers to use later. Works like a charm. I smoothed my final sauce out in the blender. You could leave it with the small chunks of onion floating around as well and save the final steps.
Makes 6 cups
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion (1 large onion)
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup tomato paste (10 ounces)
1 cup cider vinegar
1 cup honey
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 cup hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
In a large saucepan on low heat, saute the onions and garlic with the vegetable oil for 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions are translucent but not browned. Add the rest of the ingredients. Simmer uncovered on low heat for 30 minutes. Use immediately or store in the fridge. If desired, blend in a food processor/blender for a few seconds for a smooth texture.
Do ahead: This sauce freezes excellently, for months at at time.