Basque Dark Chocolate from Spain, Blood Oranges, Ginger Snaps, 2 Delicious Cheeses, Kiwi and Fresh French Bread

A tasty feast.

Basque Dark Chocolate from Spain, Blood Oranges, Ginger Snaps, 2 Delicious Cheeses, Kiwi and Fresh French Bread

Basque Dark Chocolate from Spain, Blood Oranges, Ginger Snaps, 2 Delicious Cheeses, Kiwi and Fresh French Bread

And a nice closeup of a kiwi fruit slice lit from behind:

Kiwi Fruit Closeup

Bacon Cups!

Bacon Cup

Wow, these look superb, delicious and wonderful. May have to try this sometime!

I had an occasion calling for bacon themed food and my mind immediately turned towards the famed bacon mat. I needed something a little more single-serving though, so I decided to attempt bacon cups. In the bacon mat instructions there is mention of draping the mat over an overturned metal bowl and cooking it so that it would turn out in as a bowl shape. I decided to try using the backs of various muffin and mini cake pans, I ran out of bacon before I got to try as many as I would have liked so I’ll have to try more at a later date. Any excuse for more bacon.

Read how to make Bacon Cups

"Cat" Meat Loaf for Michael's Birthday

Cat Meatloaf

Michael was always threatening to make our beloved cats (Stanley and Stella) into meatloaf. For his birthday, Kristin made him some cat-shaped meatloafs out of bison meat and they were delicious.

You could call this a “LOL loaf”

Kristin’s LOL Loaf Recipe

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef (or bison)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tsp Worchestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 tsp dried leaf thyme, crumbled (or fresh)
  • 1/4 tsp dried leaf rosemary, crumbled (or fresh)
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 3 slices bacon


Cut bacon into inch-long pieces and brown slowly over low heat. Blot excess bacon grease using paper towels on a plate. Mix ground beef (or bison), bacon, salt, pepper, eggs, bread crumbs, milk, Worchestershire, wine, onion, thyme, and rosemary. Pack into lightly greased loaf pan. Bake at 350ยบ F for 1 hour. Garnish with fresh rosemary for tail, whiskers, and onion slices for the eyes with cloves in the center. Chop a fresh carrot into triangle-shaped ear pieces.

Serves 6-8 people as part of a dinner.

Note, people sensitive to cat as a meatloaf jokes should probably stay away from this recipe. Also note: no cats were harmed in the making of this dish.

The Bacon of the Month Club does exist, and it looks delicious.

Bacon of the Month Club - Grateful Palate

In case you’d heard the rumors about the existence of an actual “bacon of the month” club, I’ve found it. It’s real, and, if anyone ever wanted to make Gabriel and Kristin happy for any reason, it would be a fun present. Only $150 for a year’s worth of bacon, too. Hint, hint. ๐Ÿ™‚

Grateful Palate – Bacon of the Month Club

Baked Pancakes

Michael came over and made baked pancakes that were spectacular

So tasty, cooked in a bed of golden melted butter in a well-seasoned iron skillet. Each one is baked for 13 minutes, and rises up over the edges of the pan. We made savory and sweet. Sweet didn’t have any additions to the pancake batter. The savory had pancetta and manchego cheese added. So good.

Michael making the bacon and heating up the maple syrup

Michael came over and made baked pancakes that were spectacular - Cooking the bacon and heating the maple syrup

Pulling the pancake from the oven

Michael came over and made baked pancakes that were spectacular - Pulling the pancake from the oven

Kristin made a delicious fruit salad to accompany the meal

Kristin made a delicious fruit salad

Enjoying the meal

Michael came over and made baked pancakes that were spectacular

Mashed Potatoes of Heavenly Temptation and Chicken with Homemade Tamarind BBQ Sauce

Tonight I made a dish that confirmed for me that sometimes mashed potatoes can be transcendent.Here is my recipe for “Mashed Potatoes of Heavenly Temptation”:

Gabriel’s Mashed Potatoes of Heavenly Temptation

  • 6-8 medium sized potatoes
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup white onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup yellow pepper, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 Tbsp French goat cheese
  • 5 strips Niman Ranch bacon
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

First, peel the potatoes almost entirely, leaving just a little bit of skin for flavor. Chop into quarters, then boil rapidly until soft. Place potatoes into oven-safe heavy dutch oven. Add stick of butter and cream to potatoes and place in oven set to 250ยบ F. Do not mash them yet.

Next, chop bacon into 1″ pieces and cook in skillet over medium heat until brown and crispy. Remove bacon from pan onto plate with paper towels.

Next, add onion and pepper to the bacon pan. Saute for 5 minutes, then add the garlic and ginger. Stir together and saute until onions are translucent (about 10 minutes).

Remove potatoes from oven. Add sauteed onion, pepper, garlic and ginger from the pan to potatoes. Mash together using a potato masher or forks until thoroughly mixed. Add 3/4 of the bacon pieces and the goat cheese to the mixture. Add sprinkling of salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. Place back in oven until ready to serve.

To serve, place a portion of potatoes onto plate and top with remaining bacon pieces in an artistic manner.

Serves 4-6.

Note: You may be filled with a feeling of absolute contentment after eating these potatoes.

To accompany this, I also made a tasty tamarind-bar-b-que chicken sauce that also turned out rather lovely and a simple salad consisting of one boston lettuce leaf plus a tiny amount of steamed spinach.

Delicious soup with ham

A vegetarian stew made with potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, onion, and other goodness topped with leftover honey baked ham pieces simmered in their own juices and vegetable stock. Veg + total not veg. Flavorsome ๐Ÿ™‚


Tasty 3-citrus salad greens

Making Hot Fudge Sauce (aka "Bee's Eyes") at Mom's House on Christmas Eve

Hot Fudge Sauce recipe in the Joy of Cooking 1964 Edition

When we were children, my parents would make this delicacy. They called it “bee’s eyes,” due to the dark bubbly surface of the chocolate sauce. It is very tasty, and did, in fact, “enrapture children” with its magical hardening over ice cream trick.


About 1 Cup

The grand kind that, when cooked for the longer period and served hot, grows hard on ice cream and enraptures children.

Melt in a double boiler over–not in–hot water:

  • 2 oz. unsweetened chocolate

Add and melt:

  • 1 tablespoon butter

Stir and blend well, then add:

  • 1/3 cup boiling water

Stir well and add:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons corn sirup

Permit the sauce to boil readily, but not too furiously, over direct heat. Do not stir. If you wish an ordinary sauce, boil it for 5 minutes. If you wish a hot sauce that will harden over ice cream, boil it for about 8 minutes. Add just before serving:

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or 2 teaspoons rum

When cold, this sauce is very thick. It may be reheated over boiling water.

Recipe is from The Joy of Cooking, 1964 Edition [page 711]

Making hot fudge sauce

Making dessert  - Ice cream with bananas, hot fudge sauce

Pouring hot fudge sauce on the ice cream dessert

Ice cream dessert ready to serve

Delicious Homemade Rustic Potato Chowder

Today I made a delicious soup for lunch — a hearty rustic potato chowder.

Made from this recipe from 101 Cookbooks: Rustic Potato Chowder:

Rustic Potato Chowder

  • 8 to 10 slices Smart Bacon (or real bacon if you’re not-veg)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 3 shallots, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 4 cups diced, unpeeled new potatoes, any color (1/4-inch dice)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 4 cups organic milk (low-fat is fine)
  • 1 cup Gruyere cheese, grated
  • another 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • fresh chives and/or chive flowers

Create the base: In a large pot cook the Smart Bacon according to package instructions, until browned and crisp. Cool and chop into small pieces. Set aside.

Add ingredients and simmer: In the same pot over medium-high heat, add the extra-virgin olive oil, onions, shallots, and garlic. Saute for 5 minutes, or until the onions start to get soft.

Add the diced potatoes and teaspoon of salt and saute for about two minutes. Now add the mustard and milk. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 25 minutes, or until the soup thickens and the potatoes are soft throughout.

Whisk and season: Whisk in the Gruyere cheese, another teaspoon of salt, and a couple pinches of pepper. Garnish with the bacon, fresh chives, and/or chive flowers.

Makes about six big bowls.

I made mine without the shallots or Gruyere cheese since I didn’t have any on hand, and in using up some potatoes ended up with closer to 6 cups of potatoes. So I increased the milk by another cup and a half. Also I only used 6 strips of bacon to start.

Garnished with bacon pieces and fresh rosemary from the garden.

Cam working on his chili

Cooking up a mean bison chili with plenty of cayenne powder, texas chili powder, bison, onions, tomatoes, and organic black beans.

The final results:

Cam's chili on the stove

So tasty!