November 15 already? Woah.
My mind is scattered. I’ve been going through pictures of Jeff Evans for the memorial this weekend and it’s, well, it’s hard. As Robbie Robertson said in a song lyric we often quote “this is sure stirring up some ghosts for me.” It all leaves me a bit cotton-headed, so given my cotten-headedness I will give you some very random notes with flashes of focus.
We did a thing on Monday. We went out! Rose Bowl happy hour with the Tumbleweeds. It felt so good and they even did one off my favorites, Crazy Arms. It was delightful. I should have brought a pain pill so I could have stayed longer. I don’t do great on straight backed chairs. Oh well, I’ll be there at the next show, pain pill in hand.
Here’s the master, Ray Price, doing my song:
And here is how I first fell in love with the song way back in early Mavericks days. This really captures what they were like in those early days. I’ll never forget those four nights in a row listening to them at the Chicago Marriott on North Michigan Avenue. This is down the road a few years but it’s so worth clicking on. Oh, and you get Trisha Yearwood and Marty Stuart in the mix too.
I had a request for Ernie’s biscuit recipe. If I’m not mistaken it’s an amalgamation of recipes from two different editions of the Joy of Cooking. Here you go.
Ernie’s Drop Biscuits
2 cups of flour
1 T baking powder
1 t of salt
6 T of butter
1 cup of milk
Mix dry ingredients. Divide butter into chunks and then cut into the dry ingredients until about the size of peas. Add milk (plus more if needed, usually another drizzle). Spoon onto greased cookie sheet and bake 15 minutes or so at 450 degrees until lightly browned on top.
I just love the morning light and the bit of frost on the roof when I look out my bedroom window.
We used our Triple S turkey backs to make turkey stock. Some of it is now residing in the freezer awaiting the turkey and stuffing. Some of it went into a make ahead gravy. We will still add some of the pan drippings to the gravy, but honestly, it is fantastic as is.
You can count on Alison Roman’s recipes.
Brown Butter Gravy
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
½ cup all-purpose flour
4–5 cups turkey (or chicken or vegetable) stock
Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper
1–-2 fresh or dried bay leaves and/or a few sprigs of thyme
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar, plus more
2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari, plus more
- Heat butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. As butter starts to melt, then brown, use a whisk to stir while scraping up the bits along the bottom of the pot. Once the butter is fully browned and smelling like gorgeous toasted hazelnuts or popcorn (about 3–4 minutes), reduce heat to low. Sprinkle in the flour, whisking constantly and continue cooking until the flour has turned deeply golden brown, the color of a perfectly toasted piece of bread, or a latté, about 5 minutes or so.
- Slowly whisk in the stock (careful, it will splatter), letting it bubble, thicken, and completely incorporate between additions until all of it has been added. Bring the mixture up to a simmer, add bay leaves or thyme, 2 tablespoons each of sherry vinegar and soy sauce, then season with salt and pepper. Continue simmering until it reaches your desired consistency (I like mine thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, but not so thick that it won’t effortlessly pour out), tasting and adjusting with more vinegar or soy sauce as needed.
Ok, I’m out of bay leaves and my thyme plant seems to have given up the ghost, but the soy sauce and sherry vinegar are absolultely necessary. It sounded like a lot of soy sauce and vinegar so we tried putting half in. Nope, she knew of what she was writing with this!
And lastly, last night’s dinner. Would it have better with the sprinkle of feta cheese I planned to put on top? Well, yes, but it was damn good anyway. Chicken thighs with a bit of sumac, salt and pepper, Brussels sprouts and small potatoes halved drizzled with a bit of olive oil and salt and pepper. All good but the magic was our red green tomato cut into chunks and roasted with it all at 450 degrees. Some of our beautiful green tomatoes we got from Heather and Steve have turned red and gold. However tomatoes like that sometimes still have a bit of a green tomato texture. Roasting these was brilliant if I do say so myself. Little red umami bombs.
And with that I must leave you. On to making a gluten free dessert to pop into the freezer.