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Yow, been really busy, can you tell?
Early Saturday morning I found myself making coffee, quiet house, sun not quite up yet. All that could be heard were my feet across the creaky old floor and some clanking of dishes. With the kitchen door open to the outside, crisp bay air was flowing through the house with glee.
Oh boy, I can hardly wait for that first cup!
No half and half, oh well. Chores & coffee, the day was looking up. I set my cup on the butcher block table to the right of the stove. This table houses large jars of wooden and shiny metal implements, salt pig and a scattering of items that either need washing or putting away. On the wall at the back of the table are at least a dozen kitchen knives and 4 sharpening steels, looks cool and very functional. Above, is an open cabinet filled with boxes of cocoa, oatmeal, coffee supplies, all kinds of kitchenny stuff. This, is my command center.
I stand at this table and go for that last glug of coffee. You know the one? The last slam of goodness that signals the next step in the day. The one that sends you in to overdrive, inspiration to get your day on!
GLUG, … hiccup, burp, COUGH. All at the exact same moment.
Normally, it’s not such a big deal. Gross, I’ll admit. But with a mouthful of black coffee? That’s right, I got a 3.5′ cone of black coffee spewed over all. Up in the cabinet, covered the knives & steels and whatever was on the surface of the little table was covered.
If that wasn’t bad enough, it began to drip. Yup, drip. So, not only now was everything splattered, but it was now running down the wall, down the blades, down the wooden spatulas and in to the jars and gently soaking in to my kosher salt.
Bring it on Monday, I can totally kick your ass.

It’s hot – A Meathenge Labs Technical Letter

Um, we’re in the middle of some kind of summer thing, heat. Oh sure, we’re near the bay (a little cooler) and the inland areas are shooting upwards of 109. But our fog is gone since last week and there hasn’t been our usual wind storm in the afternoons either. This means we just sit and bake. We don’t usually get our warm days and evenings until October, and it’s mild even then. Nope, I just checked the thermo meter at about 4pm and it’s 86!
Dude, I’m totally sweating. Just sitting here, sweating. I don’t get it and I don’t like it.
What does one do in such desperation? Cut the legs off yer jeans. Problem solved. This is a Meathenge Approved Tech Note and I approved it personally.
ps – Yeah, I have 4 pairs of speakers in the living room. There’s 5 more pairs on the property. And yes, Spongebob Squarepants is also Meathenge Approved.

Here come the judge – 5th Annual West Coast BBQ Championship

You heard that right, myself, Chilebrown and Ms. Goofy will be officiating this food related event. How’d we get to hold such a position? We were asked, that’s how. We’ve never done such a thing, so we’re really looking forward to it.
Our day starts early, but you don’t have to. I think the judging starts about noon, so you’ll wanna come by a little earlier than that to see what all the hubub is about. Where?
The general vicinity of Texas and Jefferson Streets (and surrounding areas), Fairfield, CA. Comon by and enjoy yourself, there’s tons of stuff going on, tomato festival, vendors, games & clamato.
xo, Biggles
ps – Am writing this at 4am and not quite right with the world yet. Am taking the boys to the mountains, 8600 feet up! Whar’s muh coffees foo?

Oscar Mayer Fully Cooked Bacon – wtf?

This last weekend I made it in to our local, pretty large, grocery mart. I required a few things that Omar, 2008’s shopkeeper of the year award worthy, didn’t stock. I perused the isles of said largish mart, and there were products in attendance that were noticeably not there previously. What struck me first was the Bariani Extra Virgin, my favorite green extra virgin. Then, opposite that, on the top shelf I spied a jar of Marmite? Red Mill flour! 3 times the organic produce (Feel Good crap, but even so), the list goes on. I don’t care that much, and grab my 3 paper sacks (for $110.00) and skeedaddle.
I was left with this haunting thought, “That store doesn’t suck as much as it did a few months ago.” I won’t be frequenting any more than I did last week, but damn an shit. Ya know? Even way out in El Sobrante, where the demographics meander. Maybe, ever so slowly, things could very well be looking up.
Then Ear Ache wanders in to work with this in tow. A box of Oscar Mayer Fully Cooked Bacon, wtf? I suppose it’s kind of a relief, knowing that The Man is still a fucking idiot and has about as much cohesive thought as a near death, bed ridden, 5 legged badger on morphine. But I have my hopes ya know. Or maybe this is their attempt at making a technological advancement up and over from bacon bits. The world may never know.
I can see there’s a heading, or direction. But where are they going? Do they even bother to look? This my good people, be some rhetorical questions.

Dawn of another 100 degree day – Yay?

No yay. Anti-yay. Last year it never got over 80 here in Richmond. My outdoor kitchen area topped out at 102 around 4pm. At 5:25? The kitchen was 94, what’s up with that? Yeah, okay I’m a weenie. But I don’t need yet another reason to sit like a lump on the sofa, watching M*A*S*H and pissing vinegar about everything and everyone around me.
Pure & simple, this heat is just plain ol’ communism.

The Blog & Website Cuss-O-Meter!

The Blog-O-Cuss Meter - Do you cuss a lot in your blog or website?
Created by OnePlusYou

Hmm, well, while I have had my rants I’ve attempted to keep Meathenge fairly clean and ready for everyone, even vegetarians. So, it didn’t surprise me that I rated so low on the cuss-o-meater. But it was fun! For a moment, I think. Thank you to Dagny for showing me the way.
Happy Friday !!!

Monterey – I’m going, bye!

Yup, as we speak the wagon is getting loaded up and the cooler packed. There’s a dozen El Salvadorean chorizos in there, a pork loin roast (Thanks CB!) and a dozen 1″ thick pork chops. I needs muh snacks!
bye bye
dot dot dot, we’re baaack! Well, okay we got back yesterday about 11am. I went through some of the images I took and thought I’d share.
Here you can see Z, waaaay up on the top of the dune there. The boys spent several hours climbing up and down these dunes. This was the largest and Tiny E decided that maybe when he was older he’d attempt it. Just so you know, the right side of the dune is far less aggressive and not so scary.
And yes, the aquarium is awesome. Changed a lot over the years though, they have penguins now. When I visited years ago they were showcasing Monterey Bay marine life only, now it’s all over the map. And they’ve added 9 million activities for kids. So, obviously it’s packed with tons of families enjoying themselves. This isn’t necessarilly a bad thing, but damned those strollers are evil. I counted at least 3 gift shops and 1 of which is about the size of a large market. Ahhh, the mighty dollar wins again. Go during the week, not on the weekends.
xo, Biggles

Whoa there, it’s 94 in the shade buddy! What’s for din din?

Yeah, huh. Here in our part of the East Bay, the temperatures rarely go below 40 or above 75, it’s just that way. That isn’t to say we don’t get our heat waves, I remember it hovering over 104 a few times and surely in the 80s. But yesterday, and at least this today, it was 94 in the shade.
My favorite part was when Z came running in saying, “Papa !!! It’s 120 degrees outside!”
“Um, the sun was hitting that thermometer there sonny boy. Put it in the shade, ya foo.”
Well, when the temperatures are high, the house is stuffy what meal really hits the spot? No, not watermelon, salad or tofu. It’s that good ol’ roast turkey dinner. I fired up the gas oven for 3 hours and made us some juicy roast turkey, mashed taters & gravy! The plates were licked clean and that was pretty much that. And today for lunch, turkey sammiches!
xo, Biggles

Pasta Roni, Nature’s Way – Olive Oil & Italian Herb – Um, what?

What.jpgAnd I will, repeat. Uh, whatchu talkin’ ’bout Willis?
I spied with my little eye, this box on the shelf at our local mega grocer. It’s a convenience food, all ready to shorten the time in the kitchen and feed the brood on the quick & easy. But, like it’s pasta, olive oil and Italian herb. Couldn’t I just take pasta, oilive oil and Italian herb and make my own? Or even do a switchy poo and pull out some French herb? Maybe I should just switch gears and whip out some Hawaiian herb and make it all go away.
Aloha, Biggles

Cook’s Illustrated Magazine – Those bastards sent me another damned free copy

Author’s note: There is actually a point to this post other than a poorly written rambling rant.
After giving this another thought, nope. This is a poorly written rambling rant without a point.
Quite a few years ago now, maybe 7, I received my first copy of Cook’s Illustrated Magazine. I signed myself up for a few years, was feeling full of myself because we’d bought our first home a year before. Life was going to be grand. Aww, I remember it fondly, one of my first issues and it was spring time, a grilling issue and it was all mine.

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Meathenge Labs travels to Monterey

Admittedly, I don’t have any food prose for today. But the photographs came out so nicely, I wanted to share them with anyone that might be interested. And yes, had a wonderful time with friends. We spent our time talking about old times (1985 roomates), relaxing and eating Fatted Calf faire. Luckily enough Jeffrey lives in Calistoga and stopped by Oxbow on his way down.
xo, Biggles
ps – If you click on images you should receive a far larger one in return.

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Tonight is brought to you by Chocolate, butter and Janis.

Let’s have a little juicy excerpt from Big Brother and the Holding Company on the Mainstream label …
Peter Albin – bass
David Getz – drums
James Gurley – guitar
Sam Andrew – guitar
Janis Joplin – vocal
Side 2, 3rd cut:
Down on me, down on me,
Looks like everybody in this whole round world
They’re down on me.
Love in this world is so hard to find
When you’ve got yours and I got mine.
That’s why it looks like everybody
in this whole round world
They’re down on me.
Saying they’re down on me, down on me.
Looks like everybody in this whole round world
Down on me.
When you see a hand that’s held out toward you,
Give it some love, some day it may be you.
That’s why it looks like everybody
in this whole round world
They’re down on me, yeah.
Lord, they’re down on me, down on me, oh!
Looks like everybody in this whole round world
Is down on me.
Believe in your brother, have faith in man,
Help each other, honey, if you can
Because it looks like everybody in
this whole round world
Is down on me.
I’m saying down on me, oh, down on me, oh!
It looks like everybody in this whole round world
Down on me!!
I dedicate this post to Kathryn & Gloria.

xo, Biggles

A meme! 5 Sordid Facts about Dr. Biggles.

Yay! Zoomie over in Zoomiestation tagged me for a meme, 5 Sordid facts.
Okay, last things first. One of the most evil parts of these things is, once tagged, we get to tag 5 other people who have to go through the same fun we do. Cool, eh?
First off, let’s bring in our good friend and colleague Chilebrown at Mad Meat Genius. Then and only then, Monkey Wrangler at sourdough monkey wrangler. If Doctor Jones was here, he’d be next. But alas, Dr. Five Pints is elsewhere. Jerry over at Cooking by the seat of my Pants! needs a little detour from the food network. Oh, Kevin of Seriously Good could use some of my good pestering, for sure. And because it’s always nice to be asked to play in someone else’s sandbox, I invite Shuna of Eggbeater. If you’d like to be tagged, axe or just take it upon yourself to do one too. Then yell at me in the comments so everyone can visit your playtime. Now, without further ado ..

  • I buy a pack of cigarettes each year in an attempt to start smoking. So
    far, in over 10 years, no luck.
  • Once a year or so, I’ll freak out and gut something. Such as a room, closet
    or area. Then, start over clean.
  • I let my dish sponge rest on its side so it dries quicker, it’s my nature.
  • I’m very proud of many things that I do and will mention it until you say,
    "Great job Biggles! Now go the F away."
  • My hobbies/jobs have all included computers & electronics since 1971 (when I took my first record player apart to remove the speaker so I could add them to another rig.) But I hate them all and would rather live on an apple farm and not be bothered.

Alright, so the sponge thing isn’t so sordid. But I wanted to mention it until I get praise.
xo, Biggles
Now, about that orange picture. A man with a handtruck loaded with bags of oranges knocked at my door. I bought 15 pounds worf, turned to juice. I condered doing something else with them, but I didn’t think they’d have much life left in them (plain jane Oranges) and it was mid-week. No time pally boy!