Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Best Pic Ever

Well, I like it anyway. This pic, and about 200 others, have been stuck in my Father in-laws camera since The Jack. I'll be updating my Picasa site soon with some of those photos if you are interested. But for now I just wanted to share this one as soon as I could. It's the open-air pavilion up on Barbecue Hill, as the sun sets over the Hollow.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


I just got an email from They informed me that my blog would be included on their web site in an article called 20 More Sizzling BBQ Blogs. I thought that was real funny. If I had to summarize my blog, I don't think I would use the words sizzling or BBQ. Looking back at some recent posts on this blog we have: homemade pasta, an homage to an old restaurant, many posts about pho, and pics of the Caribbean. Clearly not sizzling BBQ. So, I thought the least that I could do would be to post something that remotely resembled BBQ. The pic above is of chicken wings that I cooked in my chicken cooker. I know that some might not think of this as BBQ and their probably right. But I did put BBQ sauce on them; and this was practice for a BBQ competition. So, it's kinda BBQ. Or at the very least: BBQ related.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Homemade Pasta

Fresh pasta is so simple to make. Flour, eggs, and a little time. Once it's cut to shape you can toss it in salted boiling water, or dry it out and store it in the fridge for a few days. This batch I'll be cooking later on tonight. Hopefully I remember to take a picture of the finished dish. Stay tuned...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The End of an Era

If you're from the Merrimack Valley area and this half torn down building does not look familiar to you...go get your Grandmother. She would recognize it for sure. The Cedar Crest restaurant on Broadway Street, Lawrence, MA was the place to be back in the 60's and 70's. It had dark wood paneling, studded leather booths, Tiffany lamps, and the wait staff would all wear bow ties. It was where you and your family went if it was a special occasion. The food was old school: prime rib, open faced turkey sandwich, braised short ribs, baked stuffed jumbo shrimp, and homemade chicken soup. That's what I miss the most, the chicken soup. It was simple and salty, with tons of rice in it. When ever anyone got sick this was the go to meal. Somehow, after eating the soup, you just felt better. The first time that I ever tried veal was at the Cedar Crest. It was called veal on a heal. It was just veal parm, served on locally made Italian bread. Hand battered veal, nice crusty bread, homemade marinara sauce, and melted provolone. Just a damn good sandwich...but now it's gone. The building is being demolished to make way for a Burger King. Yep, 'Home of the Whopper.' No more hand battered, no more homemade, and no more locally sourced bread. Now people in that neighborhood can order processed, frozen fast food off a dollar menu. For over 70 years families have enjoyed quality time while dining on great food at the Cedar Crest. Now parents can keep their kids strapped in the car seat while they get dinner from a drive thru.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Snowshoe
GC I smell smoke
RGC q-haven
3rd lakeside smokers

Bright and Early at The Snowshoe

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Snowshoe Grilling Challenge

This Saturday Kris and I will be competing in Abington, MA at the Snowshoe Grilling Challenge. This event is in it's 17th year! This will be Lakeside Smokers' 4th year competing there. Typically, we don't do very well in grilling comps, and the Snowshoe is no exception. We have got a couple of calls over the years, but I don't think we've ever managed to get in the top half overall. But that's okay, it's a real fun event. A great chance to see everyone again, shake off the rust, and start cooking. Don't get me wrong, I cook outside over flame all year long. But, packing up all your gear and cooking in a parking lot is a whole different ball game. It's great practice for the upcoming BBQ season. Here are some pics of failed attempts from previous years:

Grilled Beef Tenderloin

Spicy Breakfast Fatty

Cedar Planked Salmon