Savory BBQ Chicken Drumsticks

It’s officially summer! Well, not yet but it sure feels like it so I’m declaring it. What better way to kick it off with some awesome BBQ. This is a fast and simple marinade you can make for chicken or steak. I preferred to make chicken this time because I’ve been eating a lot of it lately. Doesn’t that picture above just make you want to scream? Here’s how to get started.

Sugar
2 cloves of garlic
Black pepper
Worcestershire sauce
Soy sauce
1 lime (sorry not pictured)

Chicken goes into the pool. Normally I like to marinate inside zip lock bags overnight but this was okay for 4 hours. Meat is always best the longer it gets to marinate. Probably the only other thing I’d change about the recipe.

So once you have the chicken off the marinade, go ahead and pop them on the grill. Reserve the marinade. High heat to start then once they are on, lower the heat to low. I primarily work with a gas grill but charcoal is always best. The reason you want to work with low heat is because drumsticks take awhile. You want to make sure juices run clear and your chicken is cooked all the way through before serving to guests.

When the chicken is done and off the grill, go ahead and let the drumsticks rest as the juices redistribute back throughout the meat so that when you take that first bite you get nothing but packed flavor and moistness! You’re ready to begin your sauce. With the marinade you had, go ahead and put it in a pot to begin boil.

Once you get the boil go ahead and reduce the heat to a nice simmer and add pancake syrup. What wait?! Pancake syrup you say?

Most definitely! This will not only make your sauce taste that much more better, but it will also slightly thicken it!

Off to the side I just blanched some green beans then put them in an ice bath to “shock” and slow down the cooking process as well as setting the color. We now have a vegetable and a way to make the dish look appetizing.

Set your chicken on top of the green beans and drizzle some of that wonderful sauce on top of the drumsticks and around the plate. Ready, set, ENJOY!

Savory BBQ Chicken Drumsticks
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Ingredients

  • 9-10 drumsticks
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1/2 c worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 c soy sauce
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 2 T pancake syrup

Directions

Begin your marinade with chopped garlic, sugar, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, lime and pepper. You may add cayenne pepper if you like heat but not necessarily needed. Stir all ingredients and add to chicken in a 1 gallon plastic bag from 4 hours to overnight (recommended).

Remove chicken from marinade and reserve marinade to cook in a pot for sauce. Grill your chicken on a gas or charcoal grill on high heat to begin and then to low heat throughout. You will want to make sure chicken is thoroughly cooked and that juice run clear. Remove from grill and allow to rest to have juice redistribute back and throughout chicken.

With the reserved marinade, boil then reduce to a simmer and add 2 T of pancake syrup and mix as it slightly thickens. Spoon sauce over chicken and enjoy!

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Shrimp and Grits

I had some shrimp in the freezer and I wanted to make use of it. I’ve always heard about grits and the closest thing I’ve ever made to them is Malt-O-Meal. I can say right now they are not exactly the same. The thought of butter and cheese was a hands down winner for me so why not try making grits? Then I thought shrimp is just boring boiled or sauteed. Let’s add BACON! Because we all know bacon is best! When you fuse everything together, this is how it turns out.

So here are your ingredients. Quick cooking grits, shrimp (use fresh if you can), bacon, parsley, green onion or scallions, a couple cloves of garlic, 1/2 stick of butter, half a lemon, shredded cheese and salt and pepper.

Level out a cup of grits and add to 4 cups of boiling water. You want to cook the grits until it soaks up all the water and don’t forget to stir occasionally. Box recipe calls for at least 20 minutes but they were done in about 12 minutes.

Add salt & pepper, the 1/2 stick of butter and a cup of shredded cheese and it’s done. It should be the consistency of oatmeal.


Grits will have a tendency to tighten up once you’re ready to set up your dish so to loosen it just add a little water and stir.

Now the best part. BACON! I have about 5 slices here and you will just need to cook and chop them up. Reserve the bacon fat because that’s what you’ll use to cook your shrimp. Go ahead and cut up the rest of your prep and set aside.

Now on to the shrimp. You really could do this tedious task first because the other stuff is faster. If you have frozen shrimp you’ll need to defrost them in water. It won’t take too long but as for peeling and deveining shrimp, be prepared to take some time. For this dish I left the tails on so you’ll need to peel the rest of the shrimp.



Reserve the shells and add them to a medium pot of boiling water. You’ll be using this shrimp stock as a sauce for the finished product.

Now take the pan you cooked the bacon in and start cooking the shrimp as well as adding the rest of the ingredients








At the end, go ahead and add a ladle or 2 of that delicious shrimp stock and simmer a bit and take the pan off the heat. You don’t want to cook the shrimp for too long because it’ll get rubbery and the dish will just be ruined.

You can now go ahead and spoon a little of those wonderful, buttery, cheesy grits onto a plate and the incredible shrimp with bacon directly on top. Spoon the sauce on top and around the plate to make it pretty and you’re ready to eat! Enjoy!


Shrimp and Grits
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Ingredients

  • 1 lb shrimp fresh or frozen w/ tails on
  • ½ c fresh parsley
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 c green onions or scallions
  • ½ stick butter
  • 1 c quick cooking grits
  • 8 c water (4 c for grits / 4 c for shrimp stock)
  • 1 c shredded cheese
  • 5-6 slices bacon
  • ½ lemon
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Directions

Start with the shrimp first as this is the most tedious to work with. Defrost your frozen shrimp in water. You’ll want to peel and devein both sides of the shrimp. Reserve the shrimp shells and add to 4 cups of boiling water. You will use the stock at the end to make a sauce.

Once you finish prepping the shrimp, start the grits. In a medium pot boil 4 cups of water. Add 1 cup of grits and stir occasionally until water has soaked up. The box calls for 20 minutes but mine were done in 12 minutes. Be sure you taste the grits to make sure it’s cooked. Add some salt and pepper, ½ stick of butter and 1 cup of shredded cheese. Stir and taste again. It should be delicious!!

In a 10-12 inch pan, cook 5-6 slices of bacon. Chop up the bacon and set aside with the other ingredients of chopped garlic, chopped parsley, chopped green onions and ½ a lemon. In the same pan you cooked the bacon in, dump some of the bacon fat out leaving just enough to coat the pan. Add the shrimp, garlic, lemon juice, parsley and green onions. The shrimp will begin to cook quickly and turn pink. Add about 1-2 ladles of shrimp stock and reduce to a simmer. Add the chopped bacon at the end.

To being plating, scoop a big spoonful of grits onto a plate. If it’s too thick you can loosen it up with a bit of water and stir. You should have the consistency of oatmeal but not thick. Add the shrimp and bacon on top of the grits and spoon some sauce on top as well as around the plate.

The Quest for the Best Salsa!

So I decided to experiment a little with salsa. It’s the perfect compliment to Mexican food and one of the easiest sides to make. When I learned to make my own salsa, I never purchase store bought again. There’s something about the freshness of making your own salsa that goes a long way and something you should be proud of. Growing up in San Diego there was this hole in the wall Mexican spot called Albertos, which later became, Alejandros, which later became what it is now, Cotixan.

8110 Mira Mesa Blvd
San Diego, CA 92126
http://gotburrito.com/

No disrespect to the current establishment but to anyone who has lived in San Diego and sinked your tastebuds into the Albertos/Alejandros liquid salsa it’s AMAZING! So amazing that instead of ordering drinks I straight shot salsa. Thus earning the nickname from one of my close friends Nimitz…Hot Shot! Since the building has been under new management it hasn’t been the same. I’m still trying to recreate it so stay tuned to when I do.

So here we go. Here’s a salsa I’ve experimented with over the weekend so I welcome you all to try it as well.

So while you’re out shopping, you’ll need some essentials. I decided to go with this type of chile. Depending on your heat tolerance, I have a pretty high one. I used about a handful. You may want to go less than that but if you’re a daredevil like me, be my guest.

They don’t call me the Blazing Wings Champion for nothing…

Anyways haha let’s get started. These are all the ingredients you will need.

You’ll need to roast the chiles, tomatillos and garlic. I didn’t want “direct heat” on the ingredients so I masked the heat with foil. What I’m trying to achieve here is to char the ingredients. You can also achieve this by putting this on the grill. You will still need to use foil though.

The chiles will go fast so you’ll need to stand by the stove so they don’t burn. If you completely burn your chiles, the salsa will suck. Put the chiles into a pot of boiling water to soften them.


Once you get a good char on all sides of the tomatillos, go ahead and put those in the pot of boiling water. If the chiles are soft, you can go ahead and put them into the blender. The garlic is done when you can peel the skin easily. Be sure not to burn these also.

You’ll want to go ahead and chop of the cilantro and onions. I saved a little to the side to garnish the top of the salsa. Everyone eats with their eyes first. Just remember!


Everyone goes into the blender!



I added a few ladles of water that the chiles and tomatillos were boiling in. Reason for this is so that when you eventually refrigerate your salsa, you won’t have coagulation from the tomatillos. I’ve had some throughout experimentation so I’d probably recommend you use less tomatillos the next time you make salsa.

Finish with lime, salt and pepper to taste and you’re done!



So is it the best salsa I’ve ever had? No, but it’s delicious and the quest continues…

Roasted Tomatillo Chile Japones Entero Salsa
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Ingredients

  • 8 tomatillos
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 red onion
  • 1-2 limes
  • Handful of whole Japones Entero chiles
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • salt
  • pepper

Directions

Roast the tomatillos, garlic, chiles in a large pan. Line the pan with foil. Start a pot of boiling water and when tomatillos and chiles are nicely charred, put them in boiling water to soften.

Chop cilantro and dice red onions. Reserve a ¼ cup each of the red onions and cilantro for garnish. All ingredients will be blended so everyone goes in. I used about 1 ½ juiced limes in this salsa and depending on your tastebuds you can always add more. Salt and pepper to taste. Put your salsa in a bowl and garnish with the red onions and cilantro.