Monday, December 28, 2009

Baked Ham

I made this ham for our Christmas Day Buffet. It was very tender and literally falling off the bone when we served it.

I used an injection marinade made from apple juice, garlic powder, ground black pepper and ground red pepper.

When placing the ham into the roaster bone down, I poured 2 cups of apple juice into the bottom of the roaster. I then sliced about 1/4 inch deep into the back of the ham into squares about 1 1/2 inch wide.

Next I poured a Sweet Apple Honey Mustard Dressing onto the ham for my glaze. I placed the ham into a preheated 350 degree oven and baked until the covered ham in to bake. I basted it once and continued to cook it until it reached an internal temperature of 180 degrees.

Let it rest before carving and serve.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Mistletoe Martini

This is an excellent recipe for a nice holiday martini.


1 1/2 oz vodka
1 1/2 oz Midori Melon Liqueur
1 1/2 oz Grenadine

Mix ingredients in a shaker with ice.  Pour into glass.  The red grenadine will separate from the rest and you will have a green and red layered martini to serve your guests.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Salsa Bread

Here's a quick and easy appetizer idea.


1 tube of  Pillsbury Grands
8 oz salsa

Separate the biscuits and cut each one into 9 pieces with 2 slices across and 2 lengthwise.  Pour salsa into a bowl and add the biscuit pieces.  Thoroughly coat the pieces with the salsa and pour them and any additional salsa into a greased bundt pan.  Bake 35 minutes at 350 degrees.  Wait 10 minutes and remove from the pan. 

Serve and enjoy!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Jalapeno Confetti Dip

Try this for something new during the Holiday Season

1     8 oz cream cheese (softened)
1/3  cup candied jalapenos (chopped)
2     tbsp diced pimentos

Combine ingredients until blended.  Chill and serve over crackers or cocktail rye bread.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Apricot Pork Roast
Apricot Pork Roast


3-5 pound pork roast
1 can apricot halves
black pepper

Slice the pork roast from side to side about 3/4 of the way across.  Open the roast and lightly salt and pepper the inside of the roast.  Place apricot halves into the roast and spoon over some apricot habanero jelly.  Close the roast and tie it shut with butcher’s string. Place it onto a medium heat grill and liberally spoon on some of the additional jelly.  Continue to apply additional jelly to throughout cooking. 

Serve with additional jelly on the side.

If you do not have a favorite Apricot Habanero Jelly, check out

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Brie with Kahlua and Nuts

Here's a nice appetizer for your Thanksgiving Dinner.

1/3 c. nuts, chopped (pecans or walnuts)

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1/4 c. Kahlua

3 tbsp. brown sugar

1 14-oz. round Brie

Combine first 4 ingredients

Place Brie in shallow baking dish, cover with mixture.
Bake at 325º for 8-10 minutes.
Serve with crackers

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Here is a fun idea for your fall get together

We were recently out for the day and had the opportunity to visit the Illinois River Winery in Marseilles, IL.  The tasting room was open and we decided to take the opportunity to sample some of the offerings.  We were not disappointed.

We had the chance to go through our tasting with Greg, the owner of the winery.  If anyone knows the wines it is him.  He made some suggestions and was willing to discuss any of the wines.  We had a number of favorites but I am going to discuss one in particular that would make a great addition to your Thanksgiving feast.

The wine I am talking about is their Hallowine.  It is an apple based wine spiced with cinnamon, nutmeg etc.  It is served warm to hot and is absolutely divine.  It retails for $14.00 per bottle and is well worth the price.  A great wine to serve before or after dinner.

There is a similar wine which is called Chateau St. Nik which is also an apple wine, but is spiced differently.  It contains a more cloves.  Also a very nice wine.

This is a local winery who has a number of great offerings.  As opposed to picking something nondescript from your local grocer, go a bit further and pick up something special for your special occasion.

If you have a favorite winery,  post a comment to let us know about it.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Holiday Gift Idea

With the Holidays coming soon, it is always a great idea to plan ahead for the best gifts.  Food is always one of the best gifts you can give.  Food is personal and shows that you thought about the person that is receiving the gift.

This season, we have come up with a gift that can either be wrapped or mailed.  It can be customized to your needs and goes anywhere just fine.

The box shown above retails for $26.00 and contains 3 high quality products that make great gifts by themselves.  When combined together, they make a gift that shows that you thought the gift through.  You didn't just pick it up at the checkout line of the big box mart.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

November Contest for a $5.00 Gift Certificate

How to Enter:

·     Enter a post on our guestbook at

·     Follow us on twitter & send us a tweet @
·     Become a fan of & leave a comment Dads Roadhouse on Facebook

There will be one lucky winner drawn from the entries on December 1, 2009!

Monday, November 2, 2009

National Deviled Egg Day

Today is National Deviled Egg Day.  It is a simple treat that we all make, but again, there are regional deviations as well as personal preferences to make them good.  Below is a recipe that might be a little bit different than you are used to.  Feel free to share your recipe below.

6 Hard Boiled Eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 dry mustard
3 tbsp mayonnaise
1/2 tsp red wine vinegar

Peel the eggs and cut in half lengthwise.  Remove the yolks and place into a small bowl.  Mash the yolks with a fork adding the salt, pepper, mustard, mayonnaise and vinegar.  Mix well

Mound the yolk mixture into the egg-whites and add a bit of paprika to the top of the eggs right before serving.

For a variation, add 1 tbsp horseradish or your favorite hot sauce to the yolk mixture.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Free Betty Crocker Potatoe Samples

Click here for your free sample of Betty Crocker Potatoes.

You can either choose Au Gratin or Garlic Mashed Potatoes.  You will have to agree to receive their newsletter to get the potatoes, but that's it!

Homemade Bread - the easy way...

With autumn coming quickly to the mid-west, temperatures begin to fall outside. Soup and bread become a good and hearty meal for either lunch or dinner. When you get that urge, here is a recipe that will let you make a loaf of bread in about an hour.


3 cups self rising flour
12 ounces beer
3 tbsp sugar
1/2 cup butter

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix sugar and flour together. Add beer and continue to mix until it is a wet and sticky consistency. Put the dough mixture into a well greased 9x5 loaf pan and distribute evenly throughout the pan. No need to push the dough into the corners. Melt the butter and pour over the top of the dough. Place the pan into the oven and let bake for about 60 minutes. Stick a toothpick into the loaf to see if it comes out clean. If it does, it is done.

For a variation of the recipe, don't be afraid to add your own combination of herbs or spices to the bread. Try it with either a light color or darker color beer such as a stout. Let me know your favorite variation of the bread recipe.


Friday, October 23, 2009

"Local" Artisans

Artisan, what does the word artisan mean? According to, as a noun, it means a person skilled in an applied art; a craftsperson. Why is that important?

In this time of our economy, it is a very important term. We all have a variety of local artisans that provide us with a variety of products and services which are often superior to those of the Big Box Stores. The quality that we should all expect, but often settle for something else

With the holiday season approaching, take a few moments and consider the opportunities you might have around you who could indeed provide you with craftsperson type work in their field. It might cost a few cents or maybe even a few dollars more, but I would imagine that in most cases, you will get a much better value for your hard earned money. Keep in mind that if cheaper was always better, we'd all be driving Yugo's right now.

Over the next few weeks, I am going to explore some "Local" Artisans and the products and services they offer with the idea of promoting the high quality they provide and often times the higher level of service that you don't typically get at the mall stores.

If you know of someone in your area that would fit the description, please feel free to have them get in touch with me via a comment here, or via email at . I would love to meet them and learn about their specialty and how they do it.

Check back soon to meet a few of my local favorites and why they are some of my favorites.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dad's Roadhouse: Spicy Salsa Chicken

Dad's Roadhouse: Spicy Salsa Chicken

Spicy Salsa Chicken

If you'd like to spice up your chicken this weekend, try this...

Lightly salt and pepper your boneless chicken breasts. Grill or broil them as usual on one side. Flip them over and take a spoonful of your favorite salsa and slather it over the top to let it cook in.

Serve with rice and veggies for a quick and simple meal.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A Great Fall Salad

Romaine lettuce
1/2 cub Gorgonzola cheese crumbles
1 Apple cored and cubed into small pieces
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Dads Roadhouse Sweet Apple Honey Mustard Dressing (to taste)

Mix the ingredients with the dressing and serve. It makes Add Image for a great fall salad.

Add Image

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What do you put into your Chili?

Today is the day for the first batch of chili for the season. Luckily, today I have a variety of peppers on hand to make it a nice batch. I am not sure that I ever make the same chili twice, but they all seem to turn out well. I was just wondering what do you put into your chili to make it special?

Today's Chili:

2 lbs ground beef
5 cloves of garlic - minced
1 small white onion - chopped
2 poblano peppers
2 jalapeno peppers
1 sweet red pepper
2 Hungarian wax peppers
2 cans tomato sauce
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can hot chili beans
1/2 cup water

Brown the beef along with the onions and garlic. Add the water along with the chopped peppers. Add the remaining ingredients and simmer long and slow to let the flavors blend. Season to taste with salt, pepper and your favorite habanero pepper sauce. Top with shredded cheese or sour cream if you like.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Stovetop Sauerkraut

With the weather turning colder here in the midwest, we tend to have a time where veggies come in from the garden in abundance whether they are ready or not. This weekend they are talking about frost and snow.

We have that abundance with cabbage currently and last night I turned some of it into Stovetop Sauerkraut.


1/4 cup vegetable oil - Olive oil would work as well
1 cup water
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 3/4 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 cloves garlic - peeled and diced
1 tsp whole mustard seeds
1 cabbage shredded like sauerkraut

In a Dutch oven, add the oil, water, vinegar and sugar over a medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Add the mustard seeds and garlic to the liquids and stir. Add the cabbage and continue to cook until the cabbage is soft and the liquid reduces. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Optional is adding 3-4 slices of chopped bacon at the time you add the mustard seeds and garlic.


Thursday, October 8, 2009

Something new in the store...

We are pleased to announce the arrival of 2 new salad dressings to our line. The first is a Red Raspberry Vinaigrette and the second is a Sweet Apple Honey Mustard Dressing. Both will make a nice addition to our line.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Chicken Burgers with Olives and Feta Cheese

If you haven't been to a good meat market recently, it might just be time to take a trip over there. We have a favorite that is not too close to home, but they always have something fun to try.

Last night, I had the opportunity to grill up some Chicken Burgers with Olives and Feta Cheese. It is a lot lighter than a normal hamburger and makes a nice quick dinner as well.

Be sure to support your local meat markets so they can be there for you. Also, don't be afraid to ask them for ideas and suggestions while you are there. You may be surprised what they can do.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Gourmet is a word we hear all of the time. It is thrown around with almost any meal or dish that takes actual preparation or possibly does not come out of a box. May it be just a little bit overused?

I went to and looked it up online and here is the definition at

1.a connoisseur of fine food and drink; epicure.
2.of or characteristic of a gourmet, esp. in involving or purporting to involve high-quality or exotic ingredients and skilled preparation: gourmet meals; gourmet cooking.
3.elaborately equipped for the preparation of fancy, specialized, or exotic meals: a gourmet kitchen.

I was indeed surprised to see the word "purporting" in the definition and I guess that would answer my question. As long as people imply that it is high quality or full of exotic ingredients, then they are ok to use the phrase and they would be correct to use it.

It does indeed seem to leave a lot of room for interpretation.

Our Sweet and Hot Chicken Wings Chosen as a Winner!

We know how to make great wings around here. Another example is being selected as a featured recipe in the Armadillo Pepper Recipe of the month contest.

If you need an idea for the big game or any other time, ask for suggestions.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Lots of tomatoes and nothing to do?

If you live in the Midwest, you know that it is the time of the year that as the temperature falls, you may indeed have a lot of tomatoes come in off the vine as opposed to letting them freeze. Here is a quick and easy recipe for a pasta dish that will help to put a few of those to good use.


1 cup diced tomatoes
1 pound pasta - spaghetti works fine
2 cloves minced garlic
Olive oil
Basil to taste - use fresh if you have it

In a skillet, heat some olive oil over a medium high heat. Add the garlic and then the tomatoes. Salt and pepper them lightly while stirring. Add the basil when the tomatoes begin to break down and there is liquid in the pan. Continue to lightly stir the mixture to keep it from sticking.

After about 5 minutes you will see the tomatoes start to break down a bit and the misture will have a smoother texture. You do not want to cook it down to a sauce. You do want to retain the tomato chunks as they are. When pleased with the consistency, pour over cooked pasta, mix and serve. It can make a great meal with a salad or add a chicken breast to it for another variation.


Sunday, October 4, 2009

A different type of ribs...

Want to try something a little bit different for your BBQ Ribs? Try using a little bit of a Jamaican Jerk Marinade on your ribs before you toss them on the grill. It gives them a whole new flavor and it might just be a little bit that bites you back.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Hot vs Hot

In many hot sauces, I have come to realize that heat is often the desired goal. That can be wonderful if taste is not the ultimate goal. Many hot sauces are full of capsicum which is the heat of a pepper, but not the flavor associated with the fleshy part of the flavor.

To enjoy a hot sauce, you should indeed be able to taste the flavor of the peppers and other ingredients that make the heat possible. Without flavor, heat is just hot.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Salsa or not?

For many years, we have enjoyed salsa in numerous styles. Homemade, fresh, gourmet, etc. It may have peppers or fruit, be hot, medium or mild, even corn or beans. Whatever the variety it was salsa, it must be good. Or so it seemed.

Recently, a relative brought us some salsa as she knew we like salsa. There were 2 types and both were from large, conglomerate type companies.

We took them on a weekend camping trip. When we tried them, we realized how tasteless they were. In very short order we decided that plain chips were better than eating the salsas.

The good news is that we used the remaining salsa in the rice cooker and made what was almost like Spanish rice. We also remembered that sometimes bigger companies just don't compete on quality.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Homemade Chili Powder

As your peppers come in at the end of the summer, consider drying a few of them to make your own chili powder. It is a great way to control how hot your chili powder is and adds a great flavor option to your chili, soup or stews during those cold winter months.

There are a number of methods you can utilize to dry peppers. I will let mine set out for awhile in a bowl until they begin to shrivel a bit. Then, put a piece of aluminum foil on a cookie sheet to protect your next cookies from tasting like peppers. Spread the peppers evenly on the foil and turn you oven onto it's lowest setting. Put the peppers in and let them "roast" all day.

Upon removing them, you will see that they have dried more. If you are not sure they are dry enough to store, leave them either in the oven for awhile longer or spread out on a flat surface for a few more days.

Slice the peppers open and take out the seeds. It you like it HOT, leave the seeds with the peppers. Some folks use a seperate coffee grinder to speed the work. I use a large knife and chop, chop, chop. The smaller the better. Spread the chopped peppers out and let it dry awhile longer. Come back in an hour and chop some more.

When you are happy with the texture of your powder, place it into an airtight container to use as you please.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Albuquerque, New Mexico Salsa Fiesta

We had the opportunity last weekend to spend a few days in New Mexico and get reacquainted with the cuisine of the great southwest. Hatch chilies were on almost every menu. I was even able to try a pepperoni and green chili pizza at a local pizza place.

While we were there, we had the opportunity to listen to Chris Maher of Caleb and Milo Products who produce salsas and other food products for Whole Foods. He was quite enjoyable to listen to.

The key ingredients for him are tomatoes and onions with some type of pepper. He traced the origin of salsa back to the Incas and from there, the variations have come from all over the world. He also made some interesting points about common bases in foods in various cultures and pointed out yogurt and cucumbers as a base to so many items in different cultures. Amazing how good food becomes universal.

Monday, August 3, 2009


Encouragement to continue can come in many ways. But the best ways often come to you in ways hat you never expect, but out of the blue, you get a sign to continue along the way to motivate you to carry on. Sometimes the signals will lead you in ways you never expected, but encourage you just the same.

MckLinky Blog Hop

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Summer Baseball season is finally over

This season has been a lot of fun for both the kids and the coaches. Finally wrapped up the season with a 2nd place finish at the Benedictine University Best of the Midwest Trophy for the boys. Congratulations to all of you.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sweet 'n Hot Chicken Wings

Sweet 'n Hot Chicken Wings


2 pounds chicken wings
1/4 cup cayenne hot sauce
1/4 cup honey
1/2 tsp minced garlic

Salt and pepper chicken wings on both sides. Place wings on a hot grill until done. Combine honey, hot sauce and garlic in a mixing bowl and stir. Add the fully cooked wings to the mixture. Toss them to coat thoroughly and serve.

Calling all Chicken Wing Recipes...

For the next 30 days, I will be collecting chicken wing recipes so we will have some great wing ideas during the Labor Day Weekend and the upcoming football season.

The wings may be grilled, baked, fried, smoked, broiled, boiled or however you like your wings. Please be complete in your recipe so that someone can indeed enjoy your wings just like you like them.

Enter the recipe on your blog and then click below to add your link for your wing recipe to the contest.

The winner will be someone who has become a follower of my blog and submitted a recipe. The winning entry will be randomly selected as I may not have time to make all of the recipes by the end of the contest. The winner shall receive a Habitat for Humanity Cookbook entitled "Simple Decent Cooking". Good Luck to all...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ballpark Food - What's your favorite park?

Last Friday, we went to US Cellular Field to see the White Sox play the Baltimore Orioles. It gave us a chance to visit one of the better food and family parks in the country. They have done a lot of work to bring a variety of food choices and keep the prices not too bad for the fans.

We had center field seats for the game. Right at the top of our section, near the Fan Deck and the statues of Minnie Minoso and Carlton Fisk is a stand that features Mexican inspired foods. We ordered three different items. The food was great!

I ordered the Nachos Supreme. It came with salsa, cheese and jalapeno peppers. I also ordered a side order of sour cream. My wife had the Chili Cheese Fries and my son ordered a Chicken Quesadilla. The total for the three items was $14.50. The portions were very generous and the food was quite delicious.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A blog post about wineries

Anytime I read about a local winery or wine region, I think of how much fun it is to visit and sample local wines. We are suckers for wineries when we travel. It is a great opportunity to bring back a vacation souvenir when you travel and remember the trip when you enjoy the bottle back at home.

We often visit a region in Southwest Michigan which lies right next to Lake Michigan. There are several local wineries with locally grown grapes that put out some pretty nice wine. If you ever are in the area, the wineries near the Red Arrow Highway are worth some attention. St. Julian is a particular favorite of ours, but there are plenty to choose from. Each has their own style. Some will even sell grapes for wine making in the fall.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Smoking meat on a gas grill

If you've ever wanted to add a little bit of smoke flavor to your gas grilled meats, read on. There are a number of ways to do it.

You may have a grill that has a built in smoker box. That is the easiest way. Soak some wood chips in water for an hour or longer to get them good and wet before adding to the box. It is being wet that helps them smoke vs char and helps to add the smokey flavor without making the meat seem like it was over a campfire.

You may also buy a seperate smoker box. This is typically the method that I use. Once again, soak the chips, add them to the box, and put the box over one of the burners on the grill. The particular grill I use has 6 burners so I am often able to dedicate one burner to controling the heat for the smoke. I like to set this up off to the side so the smoke is in the grill, but not coming up directly into the meat.

If none of the above are available, a small aluminum pan or even aluminum foil shaped to hold the wet chips can also be used. It allows the heat to go into the chips and smoke to come out with little cleanup required.

If you've never tried it, don't be shy. Smoke flavor added to your grill can get you the same flavor as the tru BBQ Houses around the country right at home.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Foods Across America

Here's a way to get some great food gifts for you or a friend. Foods Across America can ship high quality meats to help enjoy the summer barbecue or to share that joy with somebody you wish you could be with that is far away. Clicl below and give it a try.

10% Off Any Order at Foods Across America! Visit Us Today!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Holiday weekend...

This is a great weekend to get together with some friends, have a Bar-B-Que and enjoy our nations freedom. Because it is an American holiday, the great part is that the simple backyard Bar-B-Que menu is quite appropriate. What does not have to be the same is how you prepare the menu. Try to add a little twist to the ideas and bring out bold new flavors.

When you are packing your hamburger patties this weekend, add some minced garlic and your favorite hot pepper sauce to the mixture to give them a little bit of zing. Add a chunk of cheese to the middle of the patty. Or maybe even a terriyaki glaze for a twist.

Be a little bit creative and enjoy your freedom this weekend.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Road trip out east

During the past week, I've had the opportunity to travel to Cooperstown, New York and enjoy some of the local eateries that are found in the mountains. While many of the establishments are following along with the rich baseball tradition that is in the area, we also visited a few that did not.

Our first stop was to an establishment that was called "Redneck Bar-B-Que" located on State Route 28. It offered both indoor and outdoor dining and had a nice variety on the menu. They make their own sauces and sell them to take home if you'd like.

My wife and I both ordered the pulled pork sandwich which came with fries and slaw. My son ordered the chicken breast sandwich with the "Dr. Pepper" Bar-B-Que sauce. We all enjoyed the meals although my son found the sauce a bit too spicy for his palette.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Coffee for Fathers Day

If you are like me, a good cup of coffee is a great way to start your day. Here is an idea to get some great coffee and a free coffee maker too.

Get Your FREE Coffeemaker Today!

Click on the button above to get your free coffee maker today!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Awsome Steak Marinade Wins Recipe Contest

I recently posted a reccipe for an Awsome Steak Marinade. I posted it on a recipe contest at They selected it as one of two winning entries in their June newsletter. Thanks! - Gourmet Honeys, Jellies, Jams, Relishes, Salsas and more.

Bacon wrapped chicken fillets

Doesn't adding bacon to almost anything make it a little bit better? Last night we had some chicken fillets, wrapped in bacon and marinated in an Italian dressing. Put them out on the grill over a medium high heat for about 10 minutes. They were served with a tossed salad and cheesy garlic bread. A very nice meal without a lot of work.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Grilled Salmon

Here's a quick and simple way to fix salmon. I had a 1 pound salmon fillet. I have a spray bottle which contains infused olive oil. Lightly coating the salmon and then sprinkling the fillet with freshly ground black pepper.

I put the salmon into a grill basket and placed over a medium high heat on my gas grill. The grill basket is a great way to keep fish from breaking apart on the grill.

There are a number of great grilling related products and ideas that you can find at . Click on the link and check out a wide selection of cooking related products for you.

Up To 80% Off! Clearance Sale Now at!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Another Fathers Day idea

Sometimes it is the simple pleasures that make special occasions special. If dad is a coffee drinker, here is an opportunity to do something special for him. Boca Java coffees roast a variety of different flavors so you can get dad whatever he enjoys.

Coffee Duet $15.95

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Monday, June 1, 2009

Spreading the green

Over the weekend, I had a chance to get into the garden a bit. I have some perennial plants such as hostas and day lillies that need splitting. I dug up a few of those along with some purple cone flowers and white spider wort and added them into a small garden I have started off the deck at our weekend campground estate.

We enjoy the time to get away and relax. With the newly added flowers, it will feel a little bit more like home.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Grilled Pork Roast

Early last week, I posted a link to a Kingsford Charcoal Coupon. On Monday, we got a chance to put the coupon to good use. With the purchase of the charcoal, which was on sale for the holiday weekend, we had to purchase another item. We selected the KC Masterpiece BBQ which was on sale for 99 cents with a $1.00 coupon with the purchase of Kingsford. That got us a $6.00 coupon for pork. We selected a pork roast for $6.19 to use with the coupon.

Additionally, Kingsford had also partnered with Budweiser and Bud Light for $3.00 off of a 18 pack or larger of cans or bottles with the same charcoal purchase. $8.99 for a case of Bud Light. Along with the Bud Light came a 12 pack of bottled water for free.

I put a Cugino's Garlic Rub on the pork roast and tossed it on the grill with indirect heat.

River Street Gourmet carries a wide variety of spices and rubs along with almost enything you'd need to put together a fun meal for you or your guests

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

As a lasting tribute to Memorial Day, spend some time in the yard and create a Memorial Garden of your own. You can use traditional items such as plants and trees, but take some time and consider some different possibilities as well.

A rock garden can become an interesting focal point in a yard. Maybe a water feature such as a fountain or a pond. Even a simple seating area such as a bench or bistro set to enjoy your yard and take the time to reflect and remember what Memorial Day is all about.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Outdoor Lighting

This week I was able to purchase some small, solar powered outdoor lighting to add to some planting areas that I put the edging around last weekend. The solar lights are environmentally friendly and should provide just the right amount of light in a fairly dark part of the property.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Wine cocktails becoming more trendy again

As we often see, life runs in cycles. It is the same with trends in food and beverages. Wine cocktails are once again making a comeback onto the scene. While a nice glass of wine will always be something you can enjoy by itself, with summer coming on, don't be afraid to try something different along the way as well.

For something a little bit sweet and refreshing, try something like this:


½ lime
2½ teaspoons sugar
3 ounces Merlot
Lime spiral to garnish

Muddle lime and sugar until all lime juice is extracted.
Add wine. Pour with ice into a shaker and shake vigorously.
Pour into a lowball glass and garnish with a lime spiral

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Free Oscar Meyer Hot Dog Coupon

It's for a mail in coupon from Kraft and Oscar Meyer that should arrive in time for the 4th of July cookout with the family.

Free is always a good thing! It's only good today so hurry.

Ready to get into the garden?

I know that it's starting to warm up and looking a little less like a swamp outside, so it must be time to start working in the garden. Here's a place to look for some of your gardening needs. They have a current sale that is $20.00 off an order of $50.00 or more. That's like a 40% discount on whatever you'd like for your garden.

Check them out.

Click here for $20 off your first order of $50 or more at Michigan Bulb!

Free $20 Off First Purchase!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Something I found today

A link to a spot that can check all of your favorite blogs including this one...

Subscribe with Bloglines

Great idea for the Memorial Day Holiday

Save $6 on on "The Other White Meat" from Gather Round the Grill when you purchase any 13.5 lb of larger Kingsford or Kingsford Match Light Charcoal and one (10) of the following participating brands: Ball Park Franks, Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing, Glad Product, KC Masterpiece Product or Vlasic Pickles or Relish. Coupon expires 12/31/2009 and you can pair it with coupons for the other products to save more.

Makes a great way to get the party started!

Steak Marinade

This morning I entered the following recipe on the submit your recipe contest at It's a favorite around here and might be fun to try for the upcoming holiday weekend BBQ. Try it with some friends.

Awsome Steak Marinade


1/2 cup favorite steak sauce
1/2 cup bourbon
1 medium onion
2 tblsp favorite hot sauce

Dice onion and add to pther ingredients. Mix together. Place steaks in a large flat baking dish or freezer bag. Pour marinade over the steaks and let marinate for 1-4 hours.

Grill steaks to your liking and place remaining marinade in a sauce pan. Bring to a slow boil and then simmer for 10 minutes. The sauce can then be served over the steaks.


Monday, May 18, 2009

Last nignt

Last night, I stoked up the gas grill and added wet hickory chips to the smoker box. Knowing this is going to be one of those hectic weeks, I planned ahead and was able to cook 3 separate meats while I had the time. BBQ Rips, Butterfly Pork Chops and Chicken Tenderloins all on one grill.

We have a son that plays travel baseball and knowing they have two games, a practice and a Memorial Day Tournament, it seemed like a good idea for me to get some food ready before spending the evenings wondering what to have when we get home or annoying the neighbors with the grill going at 9:00 pm when we get home from a game.

It also helps to use a bit less propane when cooking in quantity for a few days. Saving a bit here and there never hurts at all these days.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Hosta plants

Maybe it will warm up enough this week to split some hosta plants.

Sunday gardening

It's been a bit wet and chilly to do a lot of gardening so far in Illinois. Today I was able to get a few tomato plants in the ground along with some edging that I was able to reuse from Freecycle. Hopefully it pays off later this summer,

Saturday, May 16, 2009

A couple of links to get started

I added a few links on the right side to get started. The link on the top is for Boca Java Coffee. That is what is in my cup here this morning. They have a variety of blends and flavors to choose from. Light roast, medium roast and dark roast too. Click on the link and try the 4 bag starter set to find a favorite.

Something Old, Something New

After years away from working with specialty foods and fun stuff for the yard and garden homes, I am beginning a journey back to a place that will encompass a lot of information about the things that I enjoy most.
My wife and I have always looked for great food and fun things to share with friends as well as to make the quiet moments we can share together special. That is what this will all be about. Making special moments and memories and doing it with simple things and ideas.