A while back I came into luck and had received a can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce and had been saving it for something special.  Well that time has arrived and like the title says what happened as a result ‘ain’t yo mamma’s corn bread’, its a smokey, mildly spicy kick in the pants that will continue to remind you that you ate this delicate piece 30 minutes later.  Now usually I make corn bread with chili to help absorb the bite, not so with this corn bread it may become a staple to stand on its own.

With our company pot luck in mind I decided I might cook a dish up to remember and as we were asked to bring a ‘dish to pass’ what better dish to pass than some innocent looking corn bread.  So with that you might want the recipe which I scavenged out an old issue of Cooking Light, so here it is.

Chipotle Bacon Corn Bread

Ingredients
1 c all-purpose flour
3/4 c yellow cornmeal
3 tbsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/3 c fat-free buttermilk
2 tbsp melted butter
1 1/2 tbsp chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
cooking spray

Instructions
Preheat oven to 425°F

Combine first 7 ingredients in a large bowl, stirring well. Combine buttermilk, butter, chiles, and egg in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture; stir just until moist. Fold in bacon. Pour batter into an 8-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray.

Bake at 425° for 18 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack.

Of note in the haste of preparing this dish I did forget to include the baking powder and it still came out very nicely.

Well tomorrow will be the taste test, will have to see if I come home with any leftovers.

Edit: The cornbread was a hit last week at the potluck, infact it was so good I made another batch today minus the bacon to go with our chipotle and black bean soup, should be a spicey/tasty combo.

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Potato and Bacon Chowder in stock pot

Since we got back from our honeymoon we have been aching to cook some recipes in our new cookbooks we had picked up at the flea market well today was round two for the ‘fast healthy food’ Reader’s Digest cookbook and if our first two recipes from this cookbook are any indication of the rest of the book we might as well throw it out.  First we had made a pasta that was bland and this time we made the potato and bacon chowder which in all fairness one ingredient was substituted, instead of using Canadian ‘bacon’, I used real bacon, a nice juicy end cut from a slab of bacon prepared by a local butcher.  That said the chowder was an excellent base on which to build a fantastic potato and bacon chowder but the product that was yielded by following the recipe in the book was boring.  In the end it was Old Bay Seasoning and my spice rack to the rescue to save the day and this pot of chowder I sacrificed a prize piece of end bacon for.

So with no more anticipation here is the recipe from the book.

Ingredients
1 Qt Whole Milk
1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 Ounces Lean smoked Canadian bacon, rind removed and finely chopped (note I substituted real bacon!)
1 large onion finely chopped (slap chop to the rescue here)
2 tbsp all purpose flour
14 oz smooth, thin skinned potatoes, scrubbed and finely diced
1 parsnip, about 5 ounces grated
Freshly grated nutmeg
4 oz baby Spinach leaves
Salt and Fresh ground black pepper

Instructions
1. In a saucepan, over high heat, bring the milk just to a boil. Meanwhile in another large saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat.  Add the bacon and onion and cook, stirring frequently, 2 minutes.  Add the flour and stir to combine, then slowly add about one-quarter of the hot milk, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan to mix in the flour.  When the roux thickens, stir in the remaining hot milk.

2. Add the potatoes and parsnip. Season to taste with salt, pepper and nutmeg.  Bring just to a boil, stirring occasionally.  Adjust the heat so the soup bubbles gently.  Half cover the pan and continue cooking until the vegetables are nearly tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.

3. Stir in the spinach and continue cooking until the spinach wilts, 1 to 2 minutes. Taste the soup and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.

That is where the recipe in the book ends I would add a step 4 to season until it tastes like more than potatoes and flour.

Serves 4

Let me know what you think, it just seemed bland off the bat to me.

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Well before we get right down to it prehaps I should mention that today was an exceptional day for smoking (bitter sarcism injected throughout that last statement), if I had not been forced, have already prepared my meat for smoking I would have just thrown in the towel for smoking today, but I had no choice, so I did what you do when you have no choice.  Upon rising at 0900 this morning it was rainy and windy, so I thought I would wait tell after noon to smoke my fatty, after all it had already been rolled.  Well noon brought around no positive change in the weather so I just did what I had to do, I got the charcoal ready.

Smokin' on a rainy day

I digress so after getting the smoker going in less than ideal smoking weather I popped the fatty on the smoker and let it smoke for 1…2…3…did I mention it was windy…4 hours until the thermometer read 165.

My Fatty on the smoker

Once it was done I pulled it off, let it rest and then dug in.

Picture of the Fatty

A sliced fatty

All said and done it was worth the effort, my tomato basil fatty has been my first fatty but certainly not my last.  It took a chunk of the day to smoke this fatty over charcoal and bits of hickory and cherry but it was worth it.  It was a culinary delight and an arterial nightmare.

Disclaimer:  While I may rave that this was in fact a delicious meal it would not be right to omit the opinion of my wife, who claims it was good but salty, it was certainly a man meal.

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While this ia  new concept to me many of you may be turned off by the title, I would encourage you to roll on.  Like its contraband counter part the fatty we are talking about must first be rolled, so that is where this process will begin.  But before we do perhaps we should look at a definition of what exactly is a fatty.  A fatty is a bit of sausage rolled out filled with some tasty goodness rolled up, wrapped in bacon and smoked (more info over at Smoking Meat Forums.  Having never assembled, much less smoked one of these tasty looking things I thought I would give it a try.  So I took some pork sausage and bacon out of the freezer last night and tonight assembled my master piece I will smoke it in the morning.  Below is my ordeal in a step by step fashion with pictures.

1.The Pork Sausage all rolled out.

Pork Sausage Rolled out for the Fatty

2. The bacon weave found out after all was said and done a much easier looking way to accomplish the same thing.

Bacon Weave awaiting the Fatty

3. Getting the fillings ready to the tomato basil fatty

The Fatty all filled up with Tomatoes, Basil and Mozz Cheese

4. The Fatty ready for the smoker…

The Fatty waiting for the smoker

It almost looks tasty enough to eat right now, but in the morning I shall throw it in the smoker and try it for lunch.  Check back later tomorrow for an update.

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Since I have gotten married cooking for two is well not like cooking for one.  I have to take into account my spouses tastes in food.  I am sure many of you also have a similar problem…what do you do when your tastes don’t align?  Well in most dishes it requires making two separate dishes, compromising or just not eating that delectable food you crave but cannot have when your significant other is about.  Well recently we discovered that pizza is an opportunity to make everyone happy, just make sure you split it down the middle.  In a sort of humorous moment I realized this while baking a pizza the other day and thought I would share.

Pizza for two

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