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December's Online Holiday Block Party!

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Post Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:06 pm
CharredGriller User avatar
BBQ Deputy
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Posts: 5790
Location: Central Alberta, Canada
The votes are in and it looks like this month's Online Block Party is... the holidays!

Once again, judging from Steven's own posts and the posts of several members, this online feast will be one to look forward to, so please submit as many posts and pics as you like!
Unlike propane, you'll never wake up scorched and naked in another county because you mishandled a bag of briquettes.

ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
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Posts: 7324
Location: Stoughton, WI
I already have my first idea...time to assemble the ingredients!

ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 7324
Location: Stoughton, WI
I apologize for the quality of the following photos. Either the film was defective or there was a problem with the processing. :(

For many years my aunt made a Christmas Eve appetizer known as Hanky Panky, which is usually equal parts pork sausage, ground beef, and cheese. I put the beef and sausage into a perforated Weber grill basket and grilled them indirect over briquettes and a few oak branches.
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Many of the online recipes call for Velveeta but that's not something I care for, so I decided on equal parts jack and cheddar.
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After the meat was cooked I put it into a large pan, added the cheese, and warmed it over low heat until everything had melted together.
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I put some cocktail rye slices buttered side down on a grill sheet. After the mixture had cooled and set up (Mother Nature's refrigerator is working well these days) I cut it into small squares and placed them on the bread.
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Traditionally the slices are baked or broiled so I added some lump charcoal to the grill and brought the temperature up to about 325-350 before grilling them indirect until they mixture was hot through.
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I was quite happy with how they turned out. There was a definite smoke flavor but it wasn't overpowering and buttering the bread slices allowed them to get a little bit crisp underneath. However, it was a fairly labor-intensive process and took over 3 hours from start to finish, but it can be broken up by preparing the slices ahead of time and refrigerating them until cooking.

One final shot. Trust me, they tasted a lot better than they look here!
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Post Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:15 pm
CharredGriller User avatar
BBQ Deputy
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Location: Central Alberta, Canada
ScreamingChicken wrote:
One final shot. Trust me, they tasted a lot better than they look here!


Well, they look pretty good overall. This is something I'm going to think about and maybe try over the next few months, as the basic preparation gives me a few ideas, like a bread crumb and Parmesan topping or something like that.

Great appetizer to bring to the party, Brad! :D
Unlike propane, you'll never wake up scorched and naked in another county because you mishandled a bag of briquettes.

Steven Grilling Guru
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Posts: 266

Please thank your Aunt. Hanky-panky looks awesome! I'm thinking vodka poured from an ice block as a beverage. Cheers!

ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
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Posts: 7324
Location: Stoughton, WI
Thanks! It's always been a favorite of mine and I'm glad it turned out. Last night I used up the rest of the meat-cheese mixture and cooked a batch under the broiler, and they seemed just as smoky as the ones that I grilled.

When I was looking around for info online I found some sources that historically linked Hanky Panky to both Cleveland and Cincinnati. As my aunt was born and raised in southeastern Wisconsin and AFAIK never lived much more than 50 miles from her hometown I'm not sure how she found out about it!

The ice block vodka idea sounds neat. I'm envisioning the bottle (or a larger container if need be) inverted and completely encased in ice, with a tube connected to the mouth and running through the ice to the outside where a spigot could be attached. Ice vodka on tap! A second and surreptitious vent tube might be necessary so that the vodka flows smoothly, though.

Post Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:01 am
ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
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Posts: 7324
Location: Stoughton, WI
Chicken wings aren't necessarily a holiday-oriented food (although diehard football fans certainly consider autumn Saturdays and Sundays to be holidays :wink:) but one of my cousins often makes them for Christmas Eve, so at this time of year they count.

I started with the Hidden Valley Ranch recipe for wing sauce and made a couple of alterations. It was going to be a marinade so I omitted the butter, doubled everything except the amount of dressing mix (because I had only bought 1 package), and when the marinade measured 8 ounces in the cup I topped it with 4 ounces of brandy. As Sara Moulton says, alcohol is a conductor of flavor!
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The wings went into the marinade on Saturday as the plan was to grill them for Sunday lunch.
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I used my usual method of direct grilling over medium-low charcoal until they were done. I took the marinade, gave it a good boil, added about 6 tablespoons of butter, and then used it as a basting and "pourover" sauce.
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I couldn't taste any alcohol or brandy in the finished wings but they did have a lot of good flavor. I used a bottle of Hot Sauce Harry's "White Sox" hot sauce that my wife gave me after the Sox won the 2005 World Series, and thankfully it was as hot as that team and not the 2013 version, which would've been like a weak ketchup. :lol: With blue cheese dressing for dipping, these were some good wings.

Post Thu Dec 19, 2013 4:48 pm
beercuer User avatar
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Posts: 2269
Location: Southern Californy
Inspirational and creative holiday cooking there, Brad! As you can tell, you've got my huger going Image-- which is exactly the way you could expect me to behave were I there. :lol:

I did a little holiday cooking myself, just some beef jerky.

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A little Moosehead wit which to wash it down. Need to make a few more batches. Also am making a "Christmas-y" pizza with green and red peppers, Canadian bacon, pineapplte, black olives. Pina coladas are the preferred Christmas time drinks for that.

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Got beer???

Wolfpackbbq well done
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Posts: 2621
Location: Valley Springs, CA
I made Egg Nog with dad. We used 750ml+ of brandy with 2 quarts of milk. It's goooood. The pictures are not very exciting.

On a somewhat bbq/open fire cooking present side. I made a trivet for my dad to use with his cast iron dutch oven while camping

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beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2269
Location: Southern Californy
...And here is my holiday Christmas pizza (with the red and green peppersi). The greens are Anaheim chiles.

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Got beer???

ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 7324
Location: Stoughton, WI
Wolfpackbbq wrote:
I made Egg Nog with dad. We used 750ml+ of brandy with 2 quarts of milk. It's goooood. The pictures are not very exciting.
Are they perhaps a little blurry? :wink: Nice job on the trivet, too - I'm sure your dad will put it to good use!

The jerky and pizza look great, BC! Did the Anaheims make it ho-ho-hot? :wink:

beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2269
Location: Southern Californy
ScreamingChicken wrote:
The jerky and pizza look great, BC! Did the Anaheims make it ho-ho-hot? :wink:


:lol: Ho-ho-ho, no, Brad. I really did not find the Anaheims to be any hotter than say Christmas bell peppers. Thanks! My next batch of jerky, I;m going to make with tritip.
Got beer???

Post Tue Dec 24, 2013 10:14 am
Steven Grilling Guru
Grilling Guru

Posts: 266

Mighty fine looking chicken wings, beef jerky, and pizza. I know where I'm heading next holiday season! Our warmest wishes for happy holidays and a healthy New Year!

beercuer User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 2269
Location: Southern Californy
Steven wrote:
Mighty fine looking chicken wings, beef jerky, and pizza. I know where I'm heading next holiday season! Our warmest wishes for happy holidays and a healthy New Year!


Likewise, Steven, and an eggnog cheers to you! :cheers: :bbq:
Got beer???

ScreamingChicken BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 7324
Location: Stoughton, WI
Thanks for the kind words! Looks like I might have to get more wings next year. :wink:

On Christmas Eve I finally made up my mind for Christmas Day dinner: a rotisserie rib roast. After seasoning it well with salt and pepper I added some garlic slivers to the fat cap for more flavor. The ribs had already been cut so I cut the strings and seasoned the bottom side of the roast, and I also seasoned under the fat cap. Then I tied everything back together.
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Everything was going fine until I decided to finish the roast with a blast of high heat. Somehow the strings burned and broke, and the ribs fell off into the grill! :evil: Because I had set up 2 coal piles they fortunately fell into the empty space in the middle, although one edge did rest up against one of the charcoal rails and got pretty well done. In fact, they were cooked quite thoroughly but I was able to get them out before they were ruined.
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The roast itself emerged mostly unscathed and at a nice medium-rare center temperature. If you look closely you can see the broken strings. :(
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I prefer to order my rib roasts from a local processor but because I waited until the last minute I had to get an Angus roast from the store. But it had a nice fat cap and some nice marbling, and turned out well. I didn't use any smoke because my parents were planning on stopping by, but the afternoon snow forced them to turn back.
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If you guessed that I forgot to serve the mushrooms you're right. :oops: Fortunately there was plenty of oven-roasted cauliflower, mashed potatoes, and homemade sour cream rolls to make sure no one left hungry; we had planned for up to 8 people but the final count was 4 so there was more than enough to go around.
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I hope everyone had a great holiday dinner!

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