Category Archives: The Frying Pan and The Music Man

The Gentleman Caller’s Patented Salsa

Knock knock knock.

Gentleman Caller.

I’ve said it once and I will say it again: before I go to the electric chair I am going to have chips and salsa. There are mornings when I wake up and have that craving and literally plan my day around getting good chips and salsa. And you know what? In New York City it takes some planning. That whole Pace picante sauce ad campaign had tremendous validity to it.

Several years ago I devised a homemade salsa recipe out of necessity and it’s damn good. I have tinkered with it, and I modify it from time to time, but right now I am presenting to you the basics.

I present to you The Gentleman Caller’s Patented Salsa!

Note: this recipe makes your hands stink and if you are careless about touching your eyes or your junk after handling jalapeños, wear some gloves.

Assemble your ingredients.

salsa

  • One 32 oz can of plum tomatoes
  • scant half of a large red onion
  • large jalapeño pepper
  • bunch of cilantro
  • juice of 1 1/2 limes
  • whisper of lime zest
  • capful of cider vinegar
  • capful of extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • a teaspoon of salt (that you will likely adjust)
  • 1/3 teaspoon of sugar

Get out your blender. Rough chop your onion, jalapeño, cilantro tops and add to blender carafe. Add the lime juice and microplane a touch of zest. While the microplane is out grate the garlic into the carafe. Add the vinegar, oil, salt and sugar. If you’d prefer, you can use a teaspoon of honey instead of the sugar.  Pour the tomatoes on last.

Put the lid on your blender. Pulse on low patiently to desired consistency. I like it pretty chunky but it’s delicious smooth as well.

When you reach the desired consistency, stick a spoon pretty deep in there and taste it. You will probably need to add some more salt and possibly some more sweetness, but you really can’t know till you taste. Tomatoes vary tremendously in sweetness, and sometimes the acidity of the limes and things differ. Just be patient and go a little at time.

This salsa is pretty piquant, but if you don’t like super hot food, remove the ribs and seeds from the pepper. Also, cilantro is very polarizing. If you don’t like cilantro, google another recipe. I’m kidding. You can leave it out. It won’t taste as good, but you can totally leave it out.

Careful if you take this to a party. Once your friends taste it, you will be asked to bring it constantly.

This is The Gentleman Caller signing out!

xoxo

salsa1

Tubin’ in the Creek

Printable PDF at the bottom of the page!

Knock knock knock.

Gentleman Caller.

Summers in Texas were spent, in my family at least, at our family ranch in the sleepy one-stoplight town of Johnson City, Texas at our family ranch. ranch

One of the best things about the ranch was a spring fed creek, Miller Creek, which ran behind one of the more rustic dwellings on the property. It was heaven for a kid: vast acreage, wild animals, phenomenal food; and, if you were good, Poppa would take you to the Dairy Queen after naps. Mind you one time I didn’t have shoes on and the girl behind the counter asked us to leave the Dairy Queen.

My dad and Poppa would collect assorted inner tubes off of big trucks and such. They’d fill those big black tubes with air and down to the creek we’d start. We’d drop our tubes in the frigid spring water on one end of the fence line and let the current carry us to the other. Me and my little sisters, who are all little shits, would try to flip people off their tubes or drag my Granny into the “snake bank” – areas with high grass that no doubt (in Granny’s mind) were maternity wards for water moccasin.

Johnson City, Texas is famous for Freestone Peaches and we’d always get bushels of succulent peaches in the heat of summer. That memory inspired me to concoct this sweet summery cocktail topped with a brightly colored “tube” – a delicious peach ring candy. Yeah, it ain’t classy, but it’s delicious.

I present to you the Tubin’ in the Creek.

tubin2

tubin

What you need:

Put your shaker and a pint mason jar in the freezer. When the shaker is cold, put some ice in it.

Add to the ice:

  • 2 oz. peach whiskey (I am using Bird Dog)
  • 1 oz. peach nectar (this is easy to find in ethnic food sections – I am using a Greek variety)
  • 1/2 oz. Aperol
  • 1/2 oz. lemon juice
  • 2 oz. San Pellegrino lemonata
  • 2 oz. club soda

Shake it shake it shake it!

Fill your mason jar with ice cubes. I like square ice. Square ice is the most visually appealing. They make silicon molds to get perfectly square ice.

Strain the shaken liquid into the jar. Top with a candy peach ring. If you can keep from eating more than one peach ring, I’ll send you a prize.

You’re going to love this. It’s summer in a glass.

This is The Gentleman Caller signing off!

xoxo

TUBIN’ IN THE CREEK

Kampei! The Lychee-tini

Printable PDF at the bottom of the page!

Knock knock knock.

Gentleman Caller.

Ahhh, the delicious lychee fruit. So many Americans have probably never encountered it. It’s like a sweet eyeball that you just can’t help but roll around your mouth.

At Trip of Love we have a trio of sisters who have seen our show a combined total of 85 times. The Gentleman Caller and company have affectionately monikered them “The Trip-lets of Love”. One of the sisters, Christine, apparently thinks we’re wasting away and brings us delicious snacks. A few weeks ago she handed me a can of lychee fruit. They are of Asian heritage, so it makes perfect sense.

I got home with that can and said to myself,”What can I do with this?” I popped open that can, and it was perfectly clear.

I present to you the PERFECT Lychee-tini, Gentleman Caller Style.

lychee

What you need:

Put a martini glass in the freezer. Not one of those big boys. You want to be able to stand later. Also put your martini shaker in there.

After things are cooled off, into the shaker with some big ice cubes measure:

  • 1/2 oz lemon juice (from a lemon, not reconstituted.)
  • 1 oz lychee syrup (you should get the can that says lychees in heavy syrup.)
  • 1 oz “enhanced” triple sec (see below.)
  • 2 oz Hendricks gin
  • dash of bitters
  • lemon peel (use your carrot peeler on the lemon to cut a thin peel.)
  • Shake it shake it shake it!

Into your chilled glass put a single lychee fruit and the lemon peel. Pour. Live your life. xoxo

KAMPEI! THE LYCHEE-TINI

**Enhanced triple sec: get a reasonably priced bottle of triple sec and peel an orange like I instructed you to peel the lemon: with a vegetable peeler. Pour out at least an ounce of triple sec and use it in a margarita or something. Insert all the peels. Let stand for a few weeks. It will rock your world.