Brussel Sprouts with Onion- Bacon Marmalade

Bacon Marmalade pt. 1- First try

The Imp cooks! Ok, I try.

This was my first attempted at Bacon Marmalade. Yes, you read it correctly, Bacon Marmalade! This recipe isn’t a jam, its more like a sauce with bacon in it. Let me explain how we discovered this fantastic meal.

My husband and I just celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary in Glen Ellen, California. Glen Ellen is located in Sonoma Valley, also called Valley of the Moon, which is known for their vineyards, wines and Jack London. We stayed only one evening at a beautiful bed and breackfast, the Gaige House (http://www.gaige.com/) . That is a whole blog post in itself, but trust me, the creek side Zen room can only be complemented by a nice fine champagne and chocolate while you sit on your private wood deck overlooking the creek. Anyway, back to the food!

We were told by the inn’s host, that the Glen Ellen Star (http://glenellenstar.com/) restaurant was owned by a chef that was from the French Laundry.  My husband owes me a date at the French Laundry (which we will never be able to afford), so we had to give this a try. Our meals were fantastic; we went out of our safety zones and ordered something that we wouldn’t normally order. As the cook had explained to me, this would be the best place to leave our safety zones because it will be the best that you ever had. So, I ordered octopus and he ordered a bass. My husband fell in love with the bass, my octopus tasted great but I couldn’t get over the fact it was an octopus. I love octopus and I’m a former squid, so it just didn’t seem right. The cook was correct, if I was ever going to try it, the Glen Ellen Star would be the place. What we were mostly impressed about was the brussel sprouts with a Bacon Marmalade.

My husband is now willing to drive the hour and half back to Glen Ellen every week to eat the brussel sprouts, to save us on gasoline, I’m going to try to make it myself. I looked for advice at the all knowing Google machine and it spit out a few recipes. People mostly talked about making a jam. We didn’t eat a jam marmalade at the Star, we had perfectly blacken sprouts with a chunky, crispy bacon with magic sauce everywhere. Seriously, magical sauce. I did find this recipe on the link below, and I gave it a shot. I know it won’t be the same, just by the amount of onions it has. I will follow the directions the first time and then work my way through until I can match the Star’s. I really doubt my husband will mind.

Patio Daddio BBQ- Onion Bacon Marmalade

http://www.patiodaddiobbq.com/2011/11/onion-bacon-marmalade.html

Onions and Tyme, a lot of onions and tyme

Onions and Tyme, a lot of onions and tyme

Here is my review of the Bacon Marmalade…

  1. Sauté some onions, fry some bacon and add sweet BBQ sauce instead- It will save you alot of time.
  2. Takes a lot of time to simmer down 4 lbs of onions- Once you became impatient ant put the burner on high, watch out, it will still burn the bottom.
  3. Taste fantastic on burgers!- It’s like In & Out’s animal style, just with bacon!
  4. Taste ok with brussel sprouts- I need more stiffness to the bacon.
  5. Too many onions- Well duh..it is a Onion Bacon Marmalade, the word “Onion” does come first so I should assume it the main ingredient.
Taking FOREVER to simmer down the liquid

Taking FOREVER to simmer down the liquid

Was this recipe bad? Not at all! It had great flavor in-between the massive amount of onions and such a small amount of the bacon. The recipe also made a generous amount, not too much and not too little. The 4 lbs of onions is what gave it the abundance, I had just enough left over after the brussel sprouts to add to my cheese burger the next night. Give this Onion Bacon recipe a try, you will not regret it, but I want more!

 

 

Here is my suggestions to myself for the next time around-

  1. Add some heat- Just enough to counter act the sweetness
  2. More Bacon less Onion- I’ll make this receipe my own, with less onions.
  3. Garlic- Maybe, still thinking on that one
  4. Possible crock pot- Once again, I haven’t thought that one through. May take the lid off so the liquid could evaporate. Or take out the liquid and boil it down.

See? Not too many changes. The changes I plan to make will alter the receipe significantly, which is fine…I just want more Bacon Marmalade!

Penis Cabinet

Kitchen Makeover- An Overview

Yes I know, a blog website is meant to be updated and I have not done that, I am sorry.  I haven’t been sitting on my butt, simply put, I’ve been painting my kitchen for the past month.

A month to paint a kitchen? Yes, I’m just painting the cabinets, it is taking quite awhile, a lot of sweet and tears but I think it’s well worth it. So lets begin, at least the overview.

Before the chaos started.

Before the chaos started.

I’ll spare you the details of how to strip your kitchen, there is plenty of information on the internet. I could bitch about all of my struggles instead…nah, you probably hear enough complaining through your day. Let’s be positive then, how would giving my kitchen a makeover allow the opportunity to better myself.

1. Keeping my mind busy- otherwise you’ll drive yourself crazy.

2. Working towards a goal

3. Giving my kitchen a open and welcoming feel- onstead of the horrible green walls and a penis on my cabinet door.

4. Something new to learn- how to paint, hand drill and sanding.

5. Surprisingly exercise- the sanding is a prefect arm workout.

6. The rediscovery of yoga- ok, it has nothing to do with repainting my kitchen but my kitchen caused me plenty of stress that needed to be released.

This list is probably much longer, but those are the main positives for destroying my cabinets.

The cabinet frames all sanded down...phew what a work out!

The cabinet frames all sanded down…phew what a work out!

I’ve found that boredom is the worst part of unemployment. You’re sitting along in your house with little or no money, applying for jobs and receiving negative emails that your job application was not accepted, you start to become hard on yourself. You have to stay positive! I know that hard to do, but keeping your mind busy with something new or what you enjoy can make a huge difference on your state of mind. There is no reason, you should be hard on yourself being unemployed. It’s a waste of energy.

Use your energy towards a goal. It makes you feel better and gives you a reason to get up in the morning.  You have something to be proud of and even more importantly, you have something to talk about to others. When I was unemployed in 2011, I found myself discussing the same things over and over again with my friends. No wonder my friends didn’t want to hang out with me, I was a complete downer! Dismantling the cabinets and my frustrations and rewards, what great discussion piece. Most likely, your friends share your troubles with paint, sanders and drills.

Painted drawers, what do you think?

Painted drawers, what do you think?

Now for the last point; yoga.  I view this project as a job, I take days off and I only work until about 5pm. I had mentioned earlier in a past post, that keeping a schedule helps with the anxiety and gives you a purpose. I’ve given myself a schedule, including days off therefore; I deserve some R&R. Practicing Yoga seemed appealing to me because of the first high I received the movements with one class back in 2002. Finally, I felt that my body and mind needed something more, especially my flexibility and even soreness from sanding. With my anxiety, Yoga has always been appealing to me due to the mobility and the practice of meditation. I cannot meditate as of yet, but give me time, anything that will help my anxiety is greatly welcomed.

I know this was a brief discussion of what I’ve done in the last month. I’ve been kept busy with my 7th year wedding anniversary, friend’s birthdays and other gatherings. I’ve been busy, trust me. Tales of my anniversary will come later and probably some bitching about my kitchen. I guess I’m not going to let you guys off that easy without hearing some complaints :-) Hopefully, it won’t be another month until we talk again.

Of course, I had my manger onsite.

Copper inspecting my work

Copper inspecting my work