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Brie Is Beautiful
2
How A Pro Works From The Road
3
Can you help find a balance between ME and WE?
4
A Simple Secret to Amazing Steak
5
Secrets Of A Bartender
6
Is It Time To Rethink Your Steak Dinner?
7
Can This Bloody Mary be your wingman?
8
3 Things To Consider When Ordering Your Beer
9
Egg White Omelet
10
Click Like…Just Do It, Now!

Brie Is Beautiful

Brie with LingonberryOne of the easiest appetizers in the world to make is Brie.  It is cheese, just cheese.  Serve it warm, serve it cold, serve it with crackers, serve it with bread, serve it any way you like.  I will shoot you a couple cool versions and show you why “brie is beautiful”.

Let’s Make Some Brie

Grab a wheel of the soft cheese magic.  Brie ranges in price, find one that you are comfortable with until you lock down your palate.  It is much like wine, sometimes a great bottle of wine is under $10.00.  I bought the Brie used in this post for about $5.00.  I ate half of it before I heated it up and it was delicious.

You will need something to serve it on, or dip into it (if you heat it up it will be liquid for the most part).  I love a fresh Brie with applesbaguette but crackers can do the trick.

Once you have your two core ingredients all you need are your bonus items.  I have two versions here, one served with a Lingonberry spread and one with thinly sliced, sour, Granny Smith apples.  Next time I am going to serve up some Kalamata olives and almonds on the side.  I think you see the versatility of the Brie plan.

If you bake the cheese it only takes about 10 minutes at 350.  You can cut the corner and use the microwave.  Be aware the microwave is only about a 30 second heat-up, don’t boil it to death.  Drop it on a plate or in a little crock and set it on the plate.  Stash your apples, your nuts or you fruit on the plate and get eating!

Bonus Info

brieThis is another one of the recipes that I love.  It is easy and it looks very sophisticated and purposeful.  You are serving great shrimp, a steak, or maybe even some pasta dish so you don’t want to fire up pizza rolls as your appetizer.  Trust me when I tell you this, dropping this appetizer on the table along with some good wine and a little smooth jazz in the background is like having a police escort to date three (you may get to skip date number two).

Do some research on your own and come up with a variation that rocks.  The key is keep trying new recipes and become a better man.  Challenge yourself – Let’s Go!

How A Pro Works From The Road

Traveler

Remote office – out of a suitcase?

This may seem like a really odd question. To those of us who have careers that require travel weekly, it is a part of life. Many of us who fall into this category don’t just travel to one city in a week it may be multiple. In fact I am writing this while on a plane from Dallas to Omaha. Started this week in Omaha, was needed in Dallas, flew out on Tuesday. Now it’s Thursday I am flying back to Omaha to finish the work week, only to fly home to Minneapolis to enjoy my weekend and Easter with my Father and Daughter. Fact is, this is quite normal. So what have I learned from all of this travel?  Here are some pointers from a professional who works on the road.   I will help you survive having your suitcase double as your remote office.

First some basic travel tips.

Be loyal. What I mean is find one airline, one hotel chain, one rental car company.  The advantages of this are many. Status is one of the greatest things on the planet.  There is nothing better than free food and drinks in first class, chilling in the concierge lounge of a hotel, getting free car rentals, or better yet enjoying a comped vacation.  All because you were loyal to a chain. While status affords you all of the above, it is said getting your status is a painful journey.  When first traveling it may not make sense on why be loyal, as you have no status, no free days, no real benefits. Trust me, they all add up much faster than one would ever know, if you are loyal. Most business traveler friends I have take at least one free vacation a year.  2 out of 5 times I get a free room upgrade. My room in Omaha is the size of most apartments. When your home is your hotel, size does matter.

Next this I would highly recommend, get TSA pre-check approved.  If flying is part of your life, this will make you smile.  For $85 you go to your local airport, fill out some forms, have a background check performed, and voila… No more removing shoes when going through security. No more removing suit coat. No more removing laptop from bag.  You go through the short line set up for TSA pre-check folks.  Now add the fact that that will allow you to show up 1 hour prior to flight as you are running the fast track, versus 2 hours prior and being part of the mob.  I highly recommend you dropping the $85. Time and stress relief alone are worth it. This $85 buys you a year of fast track!

Now some packing basics.

I travel every week. I have my system down. It’s not the only system out there, it’s mine.  You need to create your own. Hopefully this helps.

Briefcase or backpack. Pick the one you like, like the one you pick – it’s going everywhere with you! I have a shoulder bag style briefcase. It’s large enough to hold iPad, laptop, charging devices, any work I bring with ( folders, papers, binders, etc). I also put my 1 quart bag of liquids and or gels in that bag. There are still airports and security Check points that don’t have TSA pre-check. For this reason I keep my laptop and quart bag in the same part of my briefcase. It saves me time. I only have to unzip 1 compartment. I also usually carry a Kind bar in my bag. You never know what delays may happen. Being stuck on a runway for 75 minutes can be frustrating at times. Weather delays can get to you. Kind Bars make me happy. What ever is your snack of choice I suggest to keep that in your briefcase or backpack. I store this under the seat ahead of me.  I want easy access as I will usually be trying to get some work done.  This has the added benefit of buying back free time in my home life. Either way it must get done, why not get it done on a plane.

Roller Bag. You need one.  One that fits in the overhead bin. It’s called a carry on. The nice thing is, most airlines allow 1 carry on and 1 personal item per passenger at no charge. Even if the carry on won’t fit because of a small regional plane, they will tag it for free.  You will tire of paying $25 and up and waiting by baggage claim for your personals.  Trust me on this.

What to pack. This is pretty basic, and will depend on your career.  That being said here is what I make sure to include: Dress pants 2 pair – Change them each day and no one knows better. Dress shirts – I bring enough for all days minus one. When I travel back home typically on a Friday I wear jeans and a button down shirt that may be a little less formal.  I prefer something that shows my personality. So clearly I pack jeans as well as a button down shirt of my choice. Also pack one suit coat. If the coat is a less expensive one and wrinkles easy, I would suggest wearing it both on the way out, as well as on the way back on the plane.  It saves on creases and wrinkles.  I also pack 1 tie, just in case.  Pack my undergarments, toiletries,etc…  Very important – if you work out remember those clothes and shoes. Also what ever you are most comfy in, your favorite outfit, I’d bring it. Sometimes that is the closest to home you get in 5 or more days. It’s good to have it with, good for your psyche.

Hopefully this helps. It’s sort of my basic guideline to successful stress free travels. If you have any things that work well for you that I have not included, I would love to hear about them.

Travel safe my friend.

Jason AbarahmAbout The Author:

Jason has been a great friend of mine for many years and has a keen focus when it comes to maximizing life.   His job has sent him bouncing around the country and he understands that work and pleasure often blend.  When he is not watching his kids play sports he is sending me tips on whiskey and tequila.  I promise there will be plenty of cool stuff from this ninja.

Thanks Jason – great post!

 

Can you help find a balance between ME and WE?

Balance

Life is a Balancing Act

So, I have this amazing conundrum in my life.  We all deal with it on a variety of levels and we all see it in other people, but tend to ignore it in our own world.  The issue is the delicate balance between what we want and our responsibility to others.  This is universal dilemma.  We want kids and want to give our lives to them, but at what cost?  We get married and approach things as a team, where does the “I” fit in the world of  “we”?  We pay taxes for roads but hate to pay taxes.  You get the idea.  What about me?!   It seems the older we get, the less in touch with ourselves we become.  Society gets in the way.

“Dude, you are just being selfish.”

When you’re an adult, you have to drop the selfish kid act.  It’s just too simplistic when you just look to meet needs, focus on what feels good, and all that crap; the greater good and what not.  I agree with this, to a degree.  Part of the premise of a society, or a relationship, is group values and group benefits as a method to make life better.

Maybe we need to make a society with benefits.  The benefits part should be pleasurable, right?  I am glad for fire trucks and roads, god bless society, but have we lost something?  Have we lost the benefits?  What would they be?

“Dude, you have needs just like anyone else.”

When you become a “mature” adult you don’t lose your sex drive, you don’t lose your dreams, you don’t lose that dudeness that makes you unique.  So how can a society exist without individuals who fill a variety of roles and have goals and dreams?  A stained glass window has thousands of little glass nubs that each have an individual role.  The entire window is amazing.  Without the parts there is no window, while the parts have limited value without the whole.  I’m rambling.  Society has rules that make the window keep out the elements while beautifully refracting sunlight.  I hate all the rules.

“Dude, you are the biggest rule follower I know.”

I confess.  My entire life I have been a rule follower to a fault.  But now, in my 40s, I suddenly find myself faced with a strange sort of bucket list.  I want to get in a fight, get a tattoo, express road rage, and even order food not on the menu.  I don’t believe this is simply a midlife phase.  I think it is a repressed part of me that has always been there.  I realize that I will probably never get a tattoo (I have discovered they are made with needles, and that is just plain stupid).   But maybe I can cross a few other, less painful, badass things off my list.

There is core need for expression that humans have, that humans need to express.  It is there for all of us, we just deal with it in different time frames and on different levels.  Don’t tell me you don’t have a little part of you that would move to Aruba under an assumed name and start over if you could pull it off.  This is what I speak of.

Back to the original point.  Damn.  How do you find balance?

I don’t have an answer  to this, quite frankly.  I wish I did.  My research has shown that republicans will blame Obama.  Democrats will cite my lack of compassion.  NRA guys will recommend that I buy a gun and ignore all other amendments.  Artistic types will offer expression as an escape.  That is the core of my blog: blend this shit,  add a pinch of who knows, and eventually find the truth.

I doubt the comment section will add insight.  Let’s be honest, people.  Most comments are a combination of ignorance and safely anonymous vitriol.  Go ahead and comment.  Prove me wrong.  I dare you.

So, back to the point.  I am going to go to school, study legitimate resources (don’t be shocked… not Facebook or the omnipresent Google) and try to find that elusive truth.  I have come to the conclusion that educated folks seem to help more that opinionated folks.  Perhaps a book, perhaps a blog.  Maybe a beer with strangers?

I will keep y’all posted on what transpires.  Psst…. Let’s go!

A Simple Secret to Amazing Steak

great steak

This is going to sound like back peddling, but a big giant steak is what you need.  No, I am not running for office planning my flip-flop on stances.  A Steak Salad with a reasonable amount of meat is perfect for that balanced diet.  A gigantic steak is perfect for the summer grill.  The two are not mutually exclusive, they can co-exist in captivity.  I understand in the wild a big steak and a salad are natural enemies, like a kitten and a squid.  But in the friendly confines of your home it is harmonious and fan-frickin-tastic.  The part that is missing is a brilliantly delicious and simple seasoning.  Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present Tarragon Butter.  This is the simple secret to an amazing steak.

Let’s Get To The Meat Of The Issue

If you are going to eat it, make sure it is worthy of those calories.  I am not saying you need to blow 50.00/lb on a prime cut of meat, just get something you like.  I watch the sales and keep a keen eye out for New York Strip or Ribeye.  I have tried many of the “lesser” cuts with limited success.  When you go too far down the beef food chain you become entirely dependent on the seasoning and the cooking style.  Promise me this, you will wait to try this recipe for a good cut of meat before you tell me it is terrible.  If you experimented with 1.99/lb ass steak don’t come crying to me.

Make sure that you are not cooking from frozen.  Better yet, get it from the butcher and then go directly to the grill.  If you have to thaw it out do not use the microwave, that dries things out and you lose before you begin.  It is akin to the Minnesota Twins in the 1990s and early 2000s going into Yankee stadium.  Sadly no matter how good the cut of meat was on the mound the pinstriped devils cooked the life out of them.  (thank-you for indulging that analogy, it helps me deal with my pain when I write it or speak it out loud).   Lay that steak on a cutting board and massage a little salt and pepper on one side and get ready to grill it.

Let’s get the grill good and hot, fire it up to that 450 – 500 degree range so the meat sears right away trapping the juices inside.  This works in a frying pan as well, I just prefer the grill whenever possible.  For the sake of argument here lets pretend you are using the grill you like the best.  I don’t have the energy to hear from the charcoal snobs or the gas aficionados, just go with what you know.  That hot grill your steak is on will cook pretty fast.  Depending on how you like your meat let it go on one side until it is well over half way done.  As soon as you flip that bugger, lather on the butter.  Aha, I am finally getting to the rub.

Treat The Meat Right

While my steak is breathing I get the secret weapon ready.  Grab a 1/2 stick of butter, real butter.  I say real butter because the health ship has already sailed, you may as well enjoy drowning in the bay of cholesterol.  Then get some fresh Tarragon finely chopped or crumbled (depending on freshness) and mix it with the butter.  This creamy magic will be an old-school delight.  Do you remember buying a 45rpm record and realizing the B side has the coolest song?  The B side of your steak will make you forget why you even seasoned the A side.  This is a simple recipe, butter and tarragon.  Please tell me you can remember that.  A great way to prep this is to whip up a large batch, spread it on wax paper, roll it up and freeze it.  Now you can knock a piece off any time you want good buttery meat.

Back To The Grill

If you recall we still need to flip that steak and go to the second side.  Put a healthy amount of the butter/tarragon mix right on top of the side you have seared.  It is going to melt fast and fill in every little opening in the steak.  The reason this goes on last is two-fold.  The first reason is that it is a quick melt, you don’t want to have it all cooked off when you eat it.  The second is that when ittarragon steak melts and drips over the sides the grill flares up and can char the steak.  Remember, your steak is almost cooked so plan on a couple minutes on the grill then straight to the plate.  It should be noted that some people like a well done steak.  The flare up and butter accelerant will add an instant crisp to the outside edges of the steak, so it may not be a bad thing for everyone.

Put It In Your Mouth

The steak is done, it is on your plate and ready to go.  Now the money shot, your friend, family member, wife, date gets to taste it.  The mix of butter dripping from the corners of your mouth and the tarragon dancing on your tongue is enough to bring a tear to your eye.  Mix that with some asparagus, baby red potatoes, and some red wine…winner.  I also like having a little tub of the butter mix on the table or on each plate to enhance the situation.  DON’T YOU DARE USE STEAK SAUCE.  I will drive to your house and scold you in a very stern manner.

As Always….

Nothing is set in stone.  If you do not like Tarragon (and shame on you) try another seasoning.  Experiment with tastes.  The key to any steak recipe is to let the meat do the talking.  You are simply adding to it, not overwhelming it.  I look forward to feedback and some of your greatest recipes.

Let’s Go Grill!

 

Secrets Of A Bartender

Drinks

I have been a long-time bartender and feel obligated to tell you, it isn’t hard.  I know the kid with the baseball hat and stern look seems like an expert but, his barely hidden angst is based on his desire to trick you into thinking he is a booze savant.  He is a nice kid, he is trying, but truth be told his job is more logistics than it is making great drinks.  Ladies and gentlemen, I humbly offer you…the secrets of bartending.

How to be a bartender

I absolutely understand that you are not looking for a second job that keeps you awake with drunk idiots until 2:00am.  I am talking about getting some liquor cred in your crib when entertaining.  There are a few different schools of thought on this.  You can try to be a full bar and impress people with your vast knowledge of all things booze.  That is a fools errand both economically and in terms of keeping inventory fresh.  A good bartender has a handful of key mixes and knows how to sell it.  Steer your guests toward the drink you own, the drink that has a cool glass, proper garnish, and consistent delivery.

Get your game-plan set up

It is important to have a plan.  This is not just advice tied to making a drink.  This is how you survive a fire in your house.  This is how you master the wing-man experience.  This is how you defeat ninjas.  This is how you entertain friends when they come over.  Have a plan.

The game plan for you is a couple cool drinks made out of core liquors.  If you want to spread out your options you need a Whiskey plan, a Vodka plan, a Rum plan, and the sneaky little Tequila plan.  I have enlisted some help from friends all over the Internet.  Sit back, read, bookmark, and make these drinks kids.

Whiskey

Let’s pick some categories –  our friends at BuzzFeed want you to take whiskey to the next level.  Learn your whiskey.  We have discussed this so don’t make me come over there.  I will pull this car over…

Whiskey is my favorite drink.  Here are some great options for you.  You cannot make them all, but you can get really good at making a couple of them!

Go grab the ingredients and make some beautiful cocktails.

 

Vodka

Image:Make Low Calorie Vodka Drinks Step 2 Version 2.jpg

Let’s take a subtle turn with the Vodka.  A wink and a nod to those trying to stay in shape.  A site that is all things to all people, wikiHow, has a few tasty little drinks that will keep her in her tasty little dress.  You also need to feed the liver occasionally without feeding the rest of the body.

Rum

Paradise  LIGHT RUM MALIBU, BLUE CURACAO, PINEAPPLE JUICE, GRENADINE Instructions pour grenadine & light rum over ice, layer (pour slowly over an upside down spoon) malibu and pineapple & layer blue curaçao on top.Rum is so versatile and, it reminds everyone of the coolest vacations.  Rum is in all of the good stuff, fruity and delicious.  This link is to Pinterest and contains a huge pile of fun drinks.  These drinks may be the opposite of the last groupings of Vodka.  There is tons of sugar in rum and is not good for your diet.  That is ok, not every drink is designed for utility, some are just to drink.  Rum has so much potential to be creative and fancy.  You get to be fancy, nice!

 

Tequila

Sure, traditional margaritas are yummy and all, but you can do much more with tequila.Oh Tequila you rascal.  Things are going great, you are drinking a few cold beers with the crew and then…Tequila.  For some reason we are drawn to late night tequila shots like pre-teens to a former Disney-Star/Pseudo-Singer concert (a tortured analogy but I like it).  It is the way to end the night.  I actually have mad props for the tequila shot to end the party.  It is so much better than the endless list of Scooby-Snacks or Snake-Bites or any shot du jour that comes along.  Tequila is manly and dangerous (thus manly, but we covered that).

Shots are easy – so here are some non-shot drinks.  If you want to get girly there is no better way to start the Cosmo.  The best thing is you may be able to link to articles about “finding her O” or “bedroom secrets”.  That is free bonus people, just another viewblender service.

And the chaser

I know this article did not build your bartending resume enough to test out of bartending school, but it is a start.  The key is finding a couple items in the links above and learn them.  You don’t need hundreds of ingredients or cutting edge equipment.  Just add your flair, some personality, and smile when you make drinks.  I do know this, people hate  it when you are dick.  That is a poor attribute of a bartender, especially your home bar.

Drink up

Let’s Go!

 

Is It Time To Rethink Your Steak Dinner?

steak salad

Steak is great.  That may be the best way to explain this recipe, simply Steak is great.  The downside is we eat way too much red meat as rule. We all need to find ways to get the taste without driving the bad juju truck through our heart.  There are plenty of scientific journals, like this one from the Journal of the American Medical Association, that point towards healthy humans not needing much red meat.  There are a bunch of articles that say eat it for breakfast too I guess.  Just be sure to check your source.  The point is we need steak because it is great, let’s just be smart about it.

Steak Dinner Disguised as a Salad

Here is what we are going to do.  We are going to find a bunch of ways to add protein to a great salad.  First get some thin, seared slices of New York Strip Steak and pile them deep on the other proteins.  The recipe is a basic salad which allows you to fit the ingredients you like into your diet.  The 21 Day Challenge will help you measure them out when you are ready to get serious about weight loss and health.  If you are on the other end of the spectrum, and are looking for more calories and protein, you can count this as a breath of fresh air in a protein shake and fried egg world.

The Recipe

Start with a fresh bed of greens like Spinach and Endive.  I am not picking the steak saladamount, you are an adult, give it a whirl.

Grab a big, I mean a big fist-full of rinsed black beans (or Garbanzo beans – love them and it is a fun word) along with Feta  or Blue Cheese.

Next go crazy with the good vegies like Bell Pepper, Cucumber, Red Onion, Green Onion, Mushroom, and Tomato.

You are on your own with the dressing.  I love creamy Blue Cheese and French mixed, but that is food nightmare.  I also enjoy a good vinaigrette, that will probably not destroy all the work you did trying to be healthy.  Heck, snatch up some fruit as your topping and leave out the dressing all together.

Don’t Forget The Star!

Grill the steak if you can.  Everyone loves steak on the grill, even vegans.  Ok, not vegans but that is it, everyone else does.  Leave some life in it.  You are not going to be dumbing it down with steak sauce so the meat has to stand on its own merits.  You may also be using less dressing leaving the delicious juices as the moisture in the meal (did that accidentally sound sexual?).  If you are cooking on the stove top try slicing the steak first and flash fry the thin strips on a very high heat.

And the long game…

Men, and women who want their man to be a man and cook something other than a giant steak on the grill, add this to the arsenal.  You have very little prep time with the salad other than a good wash and cut.  You can still crank out a perfect medium rare New York Strip and…YOU LOOK EVOLVED!  The best part is that you may actually become evolved.  Steak is Great.  We started with that and now it is time to add other great things.  Healthy eating is great.  Veggies are great.  Your swagger is great.  Having the ability to cook is great (and sexy).  Keep cooking, keep trying and you will do just fine.

If you are just plain sick of your food rut or if you are hoping to impress a lady friend with a little more than being able to belch the alphabet, this is a good play.  Go forward and eat steak.

Let’s Go!

Can This Bloody Mary be your wingman?

Bloody MaryThere is something beautiful about a well crafted Bloody Mary.  If built correctly all of your senses are impacted.  If your Bloody Mary is plain and uninspiring it is time to get a check-up from the neck-up.  This drink can help you on all fronts, your liquid wing man if you will.  Come over here, sit down and let’s discuss core drink #3 – The Bloody Mary.

How To Crank Up Your Bloody Mary

First you need to find your why…

The Bloody Mary is an experience as much as it is a drink.  Local Bars often offer free breakfast with a Bloody Mary (you pay a pile for the drink but, the concept is sound).  I recently had a couple of drinks where the server brought me a frosty glass with ice and booze in it and sent to me the Bloody Mary Bar.  This was cool because I had dozens of solids to choose from along with a few great liquids.  Both of these situations hit the “business” why.  Your why is probably a little different.  I like to create an experience with my drink.  It is as much fun to discuss the recipe as it is to drink the results.  I want my friends who have one at my house to remember the moment.  A good buddy of mine  tries a different mix and blend every time he makes one.  His “why” is to experiment and create.  Your why may be as simple as you are tired of appetizers and this is your offering when guests are waiting on the meal.  Whatever it is, the Bloody Mary is so much cooler than cheese and crackers.

The Mix

There are hundreds of pre-mixed Bloody Mary offerings.  It is super fun to randomly buy some, and try some.  There are two solid camps that Bloody Mary mixes seem to fall into.  The thick, robust dark mix that is smoky and almost beefy.  This most often what you get when your neighbor makes their own mix. Many of the bottles at the liquor store fall into this category as well.  The other option is the lighter, sweeter mix that generally uses less worcestershire sauce or leaves out  the beef stock.  I buy mixes based on the coolness factor of the label or the fact that they are on the end cap marked down 90%.  It has helped me figure out my go-to mix.  I have ended up with Zing Zang as my hands down favorite pre-mix.  I like sweet and tangy so this hits the mark.  For me the only time I even think of bloody mary mixaltering the recipe is when I crave a little horseradish.

My homemade mix was wildly popular at my bar (back in the day, I no longer have it sadly).  Here is what used to be a closely guarded, yet not so secret, recipe

The Hair of The Dog Mix

bloody mary mix1/2 gallon container of Clamato Juice – I know, Clamato.  When you add some of the key ingredients it tames down the “clam” nuances.

1 1/2 Ounces of Rose’s Sweetened Lime Juice – I had experimented with pickle juice but liked this better – but feel free to alter away

1 1/2 Ounces of Worcestershire – I am no chemist, but I think this is the fluid that tames the clam   1 Tablespoon of celery salt  1 Teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper – or none if you are a giant baby.

The Vodka

I have gone on record about my decision-making process on Vodka.  It matters if the Vodka is the key flavor, or if you drink a significant amount of the liquid spuds.  The mix has so much flavor that no one should have any way of telling if you used Grey Goose or Karkov.  I will give on the way you may feel the next day, but anyone who says they can taste it is delusional.  The most important part of this is where you apply the heat.  I am a firm believer that the spice factor of the drink should be infused in the Vodka, not the mix.  When I order a Bloody Mary I expect the same flavored drink no mater what the heat content.  The heat certainly has flavor and will alter the way it taste.  By adding it to the vodka you will minimize the impact.  Take a big decanter and fill it with a bottle or two of vodka, cut up a bunch of hot peppers, and let it absorb.  Now you have a plan!  If four people want spicy drinks and two chumps want mild you are covered.  The only variable is which vodka pour; heat or no heat.

Garnish

If it is green, made of cheese, or made of meat it belongs in your drink.  Any slap-monkey can pour liquid into a glass.  A gifted slap-monkey can make it sing.  This is your signature on the painting, the beard that makes your face manly, the sweet hood-scoop on your 87 Monte Carlo, so do it with panache.

The Rim

bloody maryDon’t  put a straw in this drink, unless you are worried about your lipstick, this gem is supposed to hit your lips with flavor.  I mix salt, black pepper, celery bloody marysalt, and cayenne pepper together for my rim.  Slide a lime wedge around the edge of the glass until it is good and wet, then get the savory grains of flavor on that rim.  Some people prefer just salt or even just celery salt.  Those are a little mundane I fear, but hey, it’s your drink.  If you are making a large number of drinks regularly then grab a “rimmer” and keep it in a cool dry place.  There are multiple layers in the rimmer allowing you to have different seasonings for different drinks stashed away.   You can also get some pre-made rimmers that are cool and have funky combinations.

The food

Shrimp is classy, a beef stick is woodsy, veggies are hip, olives are classic, cheese is mandatory…  Do you get the drift?  This step is based on your budget and your willingness to finish the job.  I started with the multi-sensory explosion that this drink represents.  You touch the cold glass, you see the bright colors, you smell the seasoning, you hear the crisp crunch as you dive into the garnishments (I know this isn’t a word but is should be) and the taste is out of this world.  The ingredients that you hang on the glass and dip into the drink are all designed to build up that experience.  Choose wisely… or just wing it!  Much like your mix, the ingredients are part of your look.  Cucumber, pickle, olive, stuffed olive (even better), pickled asparagus, shrimp, cheese, onions celery, blah, blah, blah.  Go get what you like.

Enough drama – let’s drink

Now that you have the foundation you can drink it!  As you experiment, remember the worst-case-scenario is that you get stuck drinking your flaws!  Take this drink to the top of your “go to” drinks.  Your martini, your smooth guy whiskey-on-the-rocks, your favorite beer, and now your breakfast drink.

Let’s Go!

3 Things To Consider When Ordering Your Beer

beer

 

I often hear something like ” Lets go to 1234 Fake Bar, they have 100 beers on their bottle list!”…. Awesome…..I’m all for variety, selection, and the like. 100 bottles on your beer list is a feat that takes a lot of saying yes to your distributors as a buyer for an establishment . It begs the question though… How closely is this list being monitored? You see, BEER DOESN’T LAST FOREVER. Hops fade faster than batteries from the dollar store. Beer actually gets old pretty quickly. A person needs to know how to navigate their way through a list that size, because there are land mines everywhere. These are thoughts that should enter your mind when selecting:

Top Three things to consider

#1 what is the draft situation?

In this beautiful resurrection of great beer these days, it flows like wine….only on tap. Tap beer is generally the way to go unless you have access to a solid cellar.  Kegs are the best known keepers of beers, and so are widely used. Cans are mini-kegs, hence the movement you see in craft beer toward canning. Bottles however, aside from keeping the beer centrally located, don’t do it a ton of favors. They allow light to penetrate and break the beer down. Particularly non-brown bottles. Also, the seals in the caps can break down over time and allow for quicker oxidation. Particularly twist-offs. Light and oxidation are the two biggest enemies of bottled beer.

#2 Don’t order hoppy beers.

I’ve already touched on this, but there is a reason Stone Brewing made an IPA called “Enjoy By” IPA. Hops fade. Quickly. Seriously. Get your IPAs on tap, or order one that’s newer to the market. There are a tiny few breweries who claim their triple IPA ages well, and a few do. The hop profile fades, but it is so big that it really just changes and mellows. These are unicorns, though. 99% of all “hoppy” beers should be consumed as soon as possible. From the second they are born.

#3 Beware of mean green

Green bottled import lagers are always “skunked” by the time you get your hands on them. A Heineken in Holland tastes nothing like what you are used to here. Think about the time it takes to get from the brewery to your location. This to me is good news, because I enjoy that funkiness from time to time, and at least you know what your in for.

Pick one already….no pathogens can grow in beer so it is pretty unlikely this decision will be fatal. It’s just beer.

Now don’t be a pain in the ass and start asking bartenders to read the date codes on all 100 of their bottles or anything. Just use a little discretion. Order beers that age well, or stick to seasonal brews. And don’t be so enamored with a bars ability to bring in every beer they’ve ever heard of. What really makes a great beer destination is someone who cares manicuring the list to keep it current and fresh.

peter moeller

 

About The Author:

Pete is a swaggy bitch with beer cred.  He drinks beer like most people drink buttermilk – like a lunatic.  Located in the beer capital of north America, Wisconsin, Pete is an instant expert.  When he is not raising his family he is stalking other families with the honorable purpose of helping them drink better…

Thanks Pete – we look forward to many posts to come!

 

Egg White Omelet

 

Egg White Omelet

 

Wether you are tying to lose weight, bulk up, or just maintain your physique omelets have a place in your diet.  This particular option leans toward the “lose weight” part of the equation.  I don’t want to quibble about why, let’s just make an omelet.

Awesome Egg White Omelet

Breakfast is one the greatest meals.  It starts your day off on the right foot, tastes great and has unlimited options.  A full tummy keeps you from saying stupid things to your boss.  I helps calm your troubles when boxes of donuts keep showing up in the break room and it gets the body fueled up.  The problem for most people is trying to get that last minute of sleep.  This menu will take some time to prep and cook but it is so easy to plan ahead and make this a ten minute meal.

Recipe

Beat One Egg and 1/2 cup of egg whites while the pan pre-heats, beat that egg.

Pour liquid mix into a pan over a medium heat.

Let the eggs set up before you flip the omelet.  Make the move when there is very little liquid left on top otherwise it is a mess.

Immediately add cheese followed by all dry ingredients.  The cheese needs to melt.

Once everything is spread evenly on top, fold the egg in half and slide onto your plate.

Ingredients

omelet ingredientsThis particular omelet used the following:

•1 cup Chopped Spinach  •1 Tbsp finely chopped Red Onions and Green Onions

•2 medium Bella Mushrooms • A sprinkling of Feta Chunks or Shredded Cheddar to taste •Serrano Pepper slices if you like a little heat • Top it with Diced Tomato and some ground Black Pepper.

Pro Tip – Spinach goes on last to help give the cheese more time to melt.

Pro Tip 2 – get all of this chopped and prepped ahead of time.  Take some little containers and put your entire mix inside except tomato and spinach.  All of the other items play nicely together in the fridge.  The goal of this is to minimize prep time and get you out door energized to start your day.

Crank It Up

There are 500 different hot sauces out there and they are great on eggs.  You can get stuff that burns going in and reallyhot sauce burns going out or you can get some added  flavor with a reasonable little zing.  Go crazy, try a few different ones.  Here is a little sample pack of some tasty common hot sauces.

I chopped in some serrano peppers but like everything else pepper species are more prevalent than Kayne West rants.  You may want to reference some charts that explain the heat.  Ease into it cowboy, it is not a challenge on Fear Factor.

Grab Some Meat

I LOVE BACON.  That is not going out on a limb, but, bacon is basically magical fat and salt and should be moderated.  God I hope I did not lose readers.  Put a little in the omelet.  The nice thing is you can get the flavor and fun that is bacon without eating 17 strips.  Toss some crumbles of fresh bacon inside that little egg flavored bacon holder and feel good about your diet.

Jimmy Dean has a tasty Spicy Sausage that is easy to cook and full of tangy delights.  Go to the meat market and try Andouille Sausage or Steak (don’t over cook steak in you omelet) or even Smoked Salmon.  Then you can really fly in the face of convention with cheese sauces (not cheese wiz zippy) or cream sauces.

Seal the Deal

In the true spirit of this blog’s recipe plan you need to remember how this adds to your swag.  A true gentleman offers up a hearty and aesthetically pleasing breakfast to his date so she is fully energized for her walk of shame.  OK, maybe that is a little harsh but I don’t make all of the rules.  We are taking this one step at a time, no judgment.   To be fair, you may be visiting her abode and would move from a strong 5, marginal 6 in the right light, to a pimpin’ 8 if you had breakfast for her in bed.  Pro-Tip – cooking from her fridge gives a peek into her psyche and you didn’t have to buy the groceries.

Let’s Go!

 

 

 

 

Click Like…Just Do It, Now!

like jesusThis is an old saw of mine but, the other day on Facebook…

Facebook is supposed to be a  little snapshot into our lives,  a fun way to keep in touch.  I have recently been informed I need to Click Like if my parents beat me and now I am awesome!  Click Like if I drank from a hose or rode in the back of a truck and lived.   Not to be a stickler for detail but how in the hell do you click like if you got cholera from some asbestos infused goo that was impregnated in the 20 year old hose… and died.

Clicking Like gives you freedom!  I no longer have to think about the danger of riding in an open bed of a pick-up flying down a gravel road at 60 mph.   As a kid I worked on farms every summer.  I recall our employer was heading to the farm with a pile of us in the bed paying $2.00 an hour, so clearly time was of the essence.  We flew down the highway, byway, and gravel road to ensure the weeds were eradicated.  We were damn lucky that we didn’t fly out of that truck with our little lunch box and water bottle in tow.

As a sixth grader I had a classmate who was rushing lunch out to his dad on the tractor.  He got run over because it was too hard to stop the tractor so the child could hand him his food.  Time was of the essence.  Can I Click Like and fix the catastrophic injuries Kelly suffered?

Don’t panic, we are still able to use our mouse to make life better.   I can Click Like to do something for Jesus (apparently the Son of God can be bribed with likes).  I can Click Like if I love my kids.  RELIEF!  Now I don’t have to waste my precious internet time telling them in person.  I can Click Like because I have a great kid, or mom, or goiter, or something so I am off the hook with pick-up truck guilt.  I am sure we are fine and able to live a guilt free life.

I also am sure of this, just because you got beat by an adult with a belt doesn’t mean you turned out great.  What that means is your parents were perhaps not evolved enough to communicate or teach without violence.  We don’t even know how it is even possible to use your tanned hide as a gauge to measure future greatness.  You are probably an ass.  I may be generalizing but come on people, come on.  That same logic a few generations ago would have been something like this…  Chisel Like into your stone tablet if you drown your sister to save your family from the witch she had become.  Grow up.  Just Grow.  Do something other than wax nostalgically about barbaric ignorance.

I think the kid who drank from the hose turned out ok by accident or on purpose.  I think the kid in the truck was able to Click Like later in life due to the patience of a teacher worked with him.  The truth is we survived because we are unbelievably complex emotional machines.  We can be Martha Stewart in the kitchen and still pound a beer at the bar.  We learned from our past, we read a book, we watched more than one news channel and we want to move the next level.  We are destined for the place we are destined to end up (sorry for that).  Don’t get hung up on it, try some new things, embrace the chaos and kick some ass in personClick Like if you are going to shut your laptop and live your life.

PS – I am no Jesus expert but my upbringing taught me that prayers and actions seem to have more of an impact than clicking.

Let’s go!

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