I'm not making excuses for the lack of posting recently because I don't have any good ones. I've been busy (what's new?) and things have been changing (what's new?). I've been doing more writing at work lately (that is not completely new, just increased) so maybe that's why I've been writing less at home (not an excuse - a possible explanation... there's a difference). And I've been doing other stuff... but tonight I'm prompted to post because I want to and it's been too long. And I've had my share of hearing some sad or depressing things today, so I'm going to a) do something that makes me happy (write) and b) do it about something I enjoy.
Did you know that it's officially spring now?! The first day I really noticed it was when I came home a couple of weeks ago and was able to pull out the old grill to make dinner! I'm not sure what it is about the first grill of the season, but it is second to none. Seriously. So we had grilled pork steak for dinner and it was delicious. And simple, with some tastefully simple seasoning of some sort that was sitting on the counter and butternut squash risotto (found in the frozen section of your local Byerly's... if you don't have Byerly's, I'm sorry because you are totally missing out).
A friend of mine said that she didn't know anyone from around here who ate pork steak, so she was surprised -- her family in St. Louis ate it a lot, but apparently not in the Madison area. Boy are they missing out. We had this relatively often growing up and I love it. If you haven't tried it, please do... and then let me know what you think! (p.s. Laura - this is also what I use in grandma's mock chow mien hotdish in case you decide to try that with your grandpa.)
Also, if you haven't had pork steaks, they are ginormous and since it's just the two of us, it makes for some good leftovers. So, a couple of days later after that was gone we had grilled chicken with McCormick's Grill Mates marinade (chipotle pepper style). Again, highly recommend. We love these seasoning marinade packet things -- just put them in a gallon ziploc bag with oil and water (and whatever else it tells you to do) and marinate for the day. It turns out looking like this:
With some mixed greens, apples, feta cheese, and some cranberry vinaigrette dressing it's not too shabby for dinner.
So here's the thing that I think I've finally learned about grilling: It is unnecessary to keep the heat on high or medium-high. Getting it done faster is not the goal. Doing it well (but not blackened... if you know what I mean) is the goal. So for goodness sake, turn the heat down. The other thing I've learned is that you don't have to open the cover when it's smoking. It's a grill. It's supposed to do that. AND if you turn the heat down a little, you have less fires which previously necessitated the opening of the grill. Seeing the correlation here? It took me a while, too...
So far, two successful grill experiences... I win!
And then it snowed again. But it was nice this week, and now it's raining, and it might snow this weekend a little... but I don't care because it's spring! And I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Hang in their, friends. Things are looking up and it's good to be back.
Oh, and p.s. -- a special shout out to friend Chad today. Good luck at the fight this weekend, buddy!