Monday, May 14, 2012

Happy Belated Mother's Day

I hope all you mothers had a good day.  Hearing from the kids is good regardless of their age.  We did well:  called the remaining mother, got a call from number 1 son and a visit from number 1 daughter.  What could be better?  Daughter brought lobster for herself and her mom; steak for me (shellfish allergy).  It worked out beautifully.  She also brought a DVD from Redbox.  It is the first Redbox we've ever gotten that was in just awful condition.  Someone must have been handling it with peanut butter on their fingers.  It took half a dozen cleanings before the thing would play.  Nasty!

On Saturday I indulged myself in doing something I've always wanted to do:  create pulled pork on the bbq.  I started about 08:30 making a rub and soaking wood chips.  I stole ideas from a couple people on the website.  My main guide was this instructable.  By 09:00 I had the pork butt on the bbq.  I was having trouble getting smoke, perhaps the fire wasn't hot enough, but had a serendipitous moment.  We had a couple of uncooked sausages that we wanted for a late breakfast so I tossed them on the bbq directly above the charcoal.  The fat dripping off the sausages onto the charcoal got the smoke and fire going very nicely.  I tried keep the fire low and indirect and was successful for a while.  After an hour or so though I was unable to stay in the 225F - 275F range (107C - 135C); got up to 300F (149C) for a while.  It went quite well though; this is a photo from about 13:00 - 4 hours into the cook.  That hard layer on top is a fat layer that was hopefully dripping down into the meat as well as the drip pan.
Finally about 14:30 I started losing heat.  I did not start with as many charcoal briquets as suggested by my guru (didn't have any more!) but I did have some lump charcoal.  Lump usually burns faster and hotter than briquets which is the reason I didn't want to use it but when I put it on top of the already burning briquets, it just lay there.  It didn't even smoke.  I've no idea what happened there!  Anyway, I needed heat so I turned on the gas bbq and moved the meat over to it.  I figured it had gotten a big enough dose of smoke anyway.  Using the gas (Weber Genesis) with one burner on as low as it would go and the other two off, we were sitting right at 275F - perfect.  I had to shove the bbq back next to the house so the wind wouldn't blow out  the flame but it worked!  It was almost 17:00 when I wrapped the meat in foil and took it into the house.  We prepared a salad and some vegies while the meat rested - we are trying to learn to rest meat after cooking but it sure is hard after you've been working on it for eight or nine hours!  We finally got to eat; and I must say it's good.  The wood chips I used were mesquite, not what the guru suggested, and we did find the meat has a slightly odd taste.  But it was what I had and it is very good; just a little odd.  I was pretty shy about making the rub too strong and as a result it was quite mild.  Next time there will be more zoom to the rub.  For a first try though, I'm very happy.

This week we have medical tests for my self and my wife and a return visit with the vet for the dog.  We sure do spend on the medical front!  Last time we talked with the vet she noted that the dog as cataract on both eyes.  "There are several vets in the valley who will remove that for about $3000 an eye."  Jeez, give me a break! 

I've downloaded a utility called TreeSize Free (via a link from CNET).  It lets you know how much space is being used in various files on your computer.  It has always bothered me that I can't get that information from the operating system but maybe I'm weird.  This thing though went through my computer in a few minutes and told me all kinds of interesting info.  For example, all the photos I've been taking and scans I've been doing are taking up 9GB of space!  And I'm no where near done!  I'm going to back everything up though.  Losing all those photos would just be a killer!

I've got to go.  Hope you have a good one.  I'll try to post a bit more; once a week is just bad. 


Croft said...

Copy your photos onto DVD's and store them someplace. 9 GB is only 2 - 3 DVD's.

Croft said...

Get your daughter to store the DVD copies for you. Then they are safe no matter what happens.