Chilebrown at home

Saturday, May 31, 2008


A true Bowl of Red does not have beans or tomatoes. I am starting off with two strikes against me. The finished product makes up for these transgressions. Today's chili is using Elk meat and chipotle en adobo. The beans are canario. There is no special reason for these beans except I had them on hand and they are tasty. The Elk meat is from my "Burrito Bitch" Randall.(Long Story). He is the 'Great White Hunter'. He is probably stalking some wild animal as we speak. Elk meat is a great protein. It is very lean. It is so lean that I have to add bacon fat. At least that is my excuse, like I need an excuse. Some tomatoe puree from last summers garden will be added. I also am using some of my favorite chile powder from Gunpowder Foods.

  1. 1 pound dried canario beans
  2. 16 ounces tomatoe puree
  3. 2 pounds ground Elk
  4. 2 strips bacon
  5. 1 tablespoon cumin
  6. 1 tablespoon oregano
  7. 1/2 cup chile powder
  8. 1/2 cup chipotle en adobo puree
  9. 1 onion chopped
  10. salt & pepper
  11. 1 tablespoon honey or sugar

Start the beans by simmering them in a pot covered by water.Let them simmer for at least a half hour.Then in a separate pan fry the bacon to render love. When bacon is crisp, eat. Brown the Elk and add to pot of simmering beans. In the same pan the elk cooked in,simmer onion for a couple of minutes. Add the onions to bean mixture. Add the chili's and spices except the salt. You might have to add some water to cover. Hold the salt until the beans are tender. This mixture should simmer for at least an hour or until the beans are tender.

The trick is to put the chili away and eat it the next day. Yeah right like that would ever happen. I like to serve it with cornbread. A good dollop of sour cream in the middle of the bowl will make a perfect Bowl of Red.

The Great White Hunter


Simple, but extraordinary are stuffed jalapenos. Cream Cheese, bacon, green onion, and salt & pepper is all it is. What an explosion of flavor. Of course there is a Chilebrown twist. These will be cooked in the Beehive Oven. I bought this fancy Jalapeno rack a long time ago. It has been more of a kitchen decoration then a cooking utensil. It was time to break it out. Later this summer the jalapenos will be home grown, but for now they were purchased at the local store. The bacon is from Eden Farms. It is a very, very good bacon. It is also special because it was a gift from my Good Friend and Best Man Larry.

The tricky part of this dish is coring the jalapeno. I used a sharp knife and the back of a spoon. There is some fancy device for coring peppers, but I have not tried one yet. Cook your bacon until crisp. Chop it up and mix with cream cheese, chopped green onion, and salt & pepper. Stuff those baby's tight. Bake at 350 degrees for aprox. 15 minutes. Oh Yeah!

Friday, May 30, 2008


Chipotles en Adobo is an all purpose chile sauce that I cannot live without. I keep a jar in my refrigerator at all times. I can take a little dab and add it to an ordinary dish and it will magically transform into a spectacular dish. Chipotles are ripe jalapenos that has been smoked to a dry stage. The smoking of the pepper preserves and dehydrates. It changes the flavor profile of the jalapeno. It raises the heat level of the pepper from tame to wild. The process of smoking brings out the fruit flavor of the pepper. It can have nuances of chocolate, caramel and even berry's. Chipotles en Adobo is a sauce of reconstituted chipotles and a cornucopia of spices and ingredients. Once it is cooked I blend it all together in a food processor and store it in the refrigerator. It will keep for months.
The first step is to find some chipotles. Every other year I take a couple of days off and smoke my own. I buy 30 to 40 pounds of red (ripe) jalapenos. I preserve them over a very smokey low fire for 24-48 hours. I try to use apple or some other mellow smoking wood. After 48 hours I take them out of the smoker and finish drying them in a dehydrator. I picked up a dehydrator at a garage sale for 5 dollars. Out of 40 pounds of ripe jalapenos you will be left with 4 pounds of chipotle. They will keep for several months stored in your cupboard. I seal some in plastic and freeze them. They will stay great for a couple of years in the freezer.
If you do not have the time or inclination to smoke your own, Tierra Vegetables is a good source to buy chipotle. Of course your local Latin market will carry them. They will even have chipotles en adobo already canned. The canned version is great, but it is not as complex as homemade.

  1. 1/4 pound chipotles
  2. 4 ancho chiles
  3. 2 tomatoes
  4. 8 cloves garlic peeled
  5. 2 bay leaves
  6. 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  7. 1 teaspoon oregano
  8. 2 sticks cinnamon
  9. 3 cloves, crushed
  10. 2 cups waster
  11. 1 sprig thyme
  12. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  13. 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  14. 2 teaspoons salt
  15. 1/4 cup cider vinegar
Boil a pot of water.Take pot off of stove and place chilies in boiling hot water and let them rehydrate for 20 minutes. Drain and remove all stems. Reserve 1/2 cup of soaking liquid. Place rehydrate chilies in a large heavy pot and add all ingredients including 1/2 cup of soaking liquid. Simmer for 45 minutes. Take off heat and let cool for 20 minutes. Remove bay leaves and cinnamon. Place mixture in food processor and pulse. Store in refrigerator.

There are so many uses for this chipotle puree. Try adding a dollop to your mayonnaise. Mashed potatoes are a good candidate. Use some sauce in marinating your meats. Add some vinegar and honey and use as a barbeque sauce. Baked beans will never be the same. Kick up your homemade bread with a tablespoon or two. I could go on and on, but I am hungry!

Czechoslvakian Photo By Biggles

Monday, May 26, 2008


Jeeze Louise, I may have been a little harsh on the score of Bacon Jam. I originally gave it a 2.5 stars out of 5. I think it should not be called a Jam. When you see the label of a jam you have expectations of something sweet. This product has some savory sweetness. It does not deliver in the category of something to put on your toast. It does have qualities to deliver to Meat. That is why I am giving this a second review. Today, I am trying this product with a Buffalo Hamburger. I am going to put it on a homemade English Muffin and top it off with a slice of cheese.

The grill has been fired with Mesquite charcoal. The muffin is in the toaster oven. The burger will be cooked medium. The burger will be flipped after 5 minutes or so and the cheese will be added. Here is the test. I am going to spread Bacon Jam on both halves of the English Muffin while it is still warm. The burger will add some heat to melt the Bacon Jam. There will be a hunk of lettuce added during serving. I am hoping for the best.

The burger is off the grill, the cheese is melted, and the Bacon Jam is melting over the English Muffin. I take a bite. I take another bite. I can taste the Bacon Jam. It is a accompaniment that is welcome. It is a little sweet like a relish should be. It has the bacon flavor that we all Love. It is not overpowering. I think it is a hit. The rating will be raised to 3.5 stars out of 5. I think the original score was low because of the wrong labeling of Bacon Jam.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


Today I am making my version of Paella. It will be made in a custom barbeque called the 'Texas Party Wok'. The Party Wok is made out of recycled plough discs. The middle disc holds charcoal to heat the top disc. The top disc is polished smooth to create a great cooking surface. This Party Wok is a lot of fun. Its uses are only limited by your imagintion. The paella will be a combination of Chicken, Sausage,Shrimp and rice.

  1. 3 pounds Chicken Thighs
  2. 2 pounds Shrimp
  3. 1 pound sausage
  4. 1 cup peas
  5. 2 cups rice
  6. salt & pepper
  7. 3 cups water
  8. 1 pinch saffron
  9. vegetable oil
  10. small onion diced

Fire up the Party Wok. Season the chicken thighs with salt & pepper. Add some oil to the wok and fry the thighs for 15 minutes or until browned. Reserve the thighs. Brown the sausage and reserve. Place some more oil in wok and cook onion for 4 minutes. Add the rice and stir until fragrant. Add the water and saffron, then stir. Arrange reserved chicken and sausage. Place shrimp and peas into mixture. Cover with foil and let steam for aprox 15 minutes.

This is my Cowboy Paella. It is a fun party dish. Who would think that Texas would make Party Woks!


Saturday, May 24, 2008


All right, calm down, it is true, We are reviewing Bacon Jam. This is a first. Have you ever heard of such stuff? When I saw it I had to try it. We ordered it off of E-Bay from "Skillet". 'Skillet' is a movable Diner located in Seattle Washington. It sounds like a great place to grab a bite of killer pork. They are making this Jam and putting it on their burgers and selling it to go. We invited the Reverend Biggles over to try this concoction. I made some mini English Muffins for the tasting. The hardest part was to wait for two days for the weekend. The weekend is here and we are tasting.

We toasted the muffins and had butter ready. The Reverend showed with his camera in tow. The lid was removed and a whiff was the first order. The first smell was a hint of vinegar. You could smell a bacon odor to top it off. Our first impression was not that great. It looked kind of nasty. There was a streak of fat down the middle of the jar. I tried a small scoop naked on a spoon. It was not very sweet. I thought jam was supposed to be sweet. I tasted onion, bacon and vinegar. It was pleasant. I would call it a chutney more than a jam. We then tried it on a mini English Muffin. The Muffin was warm, so the bacon jam melted a little into the bread. This brought out more of the flavor. I was really enjoying this now. What did Ms. Goofy and The Reverend think?

The Reverend took two small little bites. He then dropped to the floor and started to spin circles on his elbow screaming(Whoop, Whoop,Whoop, ala Curly Style). Ms. Goofy went for the butter infused bacon jam muffin. She thought it was Okay. Dr. Biggles politely said he like the bacon jam. He only took to micro bites.

The consensus was that it was not really a jam. I liked it and thought it would be great for a burger. Ms. Goofy and Biggles said they liked it, but, truthfully they didn't. Skillet's Bacon Jam will get a 2.5 star out of 5 rating.

Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
Cost: 8 bucks and 6 for shipping
Where: Seattle Wa. (Order from E-Bay)

Photos by Biggles

Friday, May 23, 2008


Cowtown Bar-B-Q sauce is in the house. I had a special delivery by two special Truck Driving Women from Kansas City. They run a sleeper team truck starting in Kansas City, to Richmond California and return in a 5 day period. They brought a gift of an assortment of Ribs, Chicken and Brisket from 'Famous Dave's'. They also brought a sauce called 'Kansas Citys COWTOWN Bar-B-Q Sauce". I am one happy camper. The barbeque from Famous Dave's was scrumptious. It got devoured quickly. The brisket was very smoky and tender. This is one takeout delivery that was unique. Kansas City does barbeque very well. I think I will have to give them a run for the money by smoking some ribs myself. I am going to use the Cowtown sauce as an accompaniment for some applewood smoked spareribs. I am going to try a new recipe for barbequed cole slaw. Let the fun begin!

Grilled Cole Slaw

  1. green cabbage cut into 8 wedges
  2. 5 tablespoons mayonnaise
  3. 5 tablespoons cider vinegar
  4. 3 pickles jalapenos minced
  5. 2 teaspoons of jalapeno pickling liquid
  6. salt & pepper
  7. vegetable oil

Start a barbeque fire. Take cabbage and brush with vegetable oil. Season with salt & pepper. When fire is nice and hot grill cabbage wedges over high heat until charred. Remove and reserve cabbage wedges. When cool enough to handle, finely slice and place in large bowl. Whisk mayonnaise, cider vinegar, jalapenos and pickling liquid. Add mixture to cabbage an toss well. Season with salt & pepper.


Today I have a slab from my local Supermarket. I have trimmed some of the extra fat. I left the peel on today for kicks. I am rubbing it with my friend Scott's, Rub. (Survival Spice). Let it sit for a couple of hours or overnight in the refrigerator. I am using my Weber Rocky Mountain Smoker. It is an easy process. Light the Charcoals, fill the water pan, and add 4 chunks of apple wood. When fire is going place meat on grill. Adjust the vents to maintain a temperature of 225 -250 degrees After 2 hours flip or rearrange ribs on grill. After 3 hours start checking the rack to see if the bone will fall away from the meat. When it is there add your sauce.

The Coleslaw was great. The grilling brought out the sweetness of the cabbage. The ribs were falling off the bone. I hope Ms. Goofy does not make a midnight raid to the refrigerator, because I would like some ribs tomorrow. You know what, Kansas City does not have anything on Chilebrown's Barbeque!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Mark your calendars for September 6. This is the date of the Rodeo Chili Cook off. I will be there defending our First Place title from last year. It is a Chili Cook off and Car Show. It will be held at the 'Lefty Gomez' field in Rodeo, California. Last year our team made a Tri-Tip Chili. It was voted as the crowd favorite. We had a lot of stiff competition. The field consisted of 12 other teams. The local church, fire department and a local politician were present. We had to prepare a 5 gallon pot of chili in 4 hours. Everything had to be prepared on site. We had to adhere to all Health and Safety codes. It was a little nerve racking at first. Once we had everything set up and cooking, the nerves settled. The 12 ounce cans of liquid refreshment might of helped too.

Our chili was done in plenty of time. We just had to wait for the 12 noon starting gun. A couple of booths down was vacant until the last hour. It was the booth for our local politician. I will not mention his name to spare the embarrassment. He came in with a crew who were bringing in boxes of material. After a little investigation we found out what was in the box. It was large cans of Nalley's Chili. The nerve of this fake to try to pass off canned chili. Well he was outed and disqualified. I wonder if this is a statement of all politicians. The gun sounded and the crowd surged. Our Chili was gone in less than an hour. We could relax until the votes were tallied. At the end we were victorious. It was the end of a good day!

I hope you can make it September 6. Come by and say Hello!!!!!

Saturday, May 17, 2008


There is nothing like laying a foundation of Sourdough Pancakes in your stomach to start the day. I eat three or four and my stomach expands to Homer Simpson proportions. I also include another food group to this meal. Of course, the food group is named Bacon. Today's bacon just happens to be Nueske's bacon. It is the smoke bomb extravaganza. I take these two ingredients and put a huge slab of butter and drown them in Pure Maple Syrup. It is a simple guilty pleasure. Man, Oh Man!, I am going to take a nap before I have to get up to start lunch.

Sourdough Pancakes
  1. 1 cup of sourdough starter
  2. 1 cup of water
  3. 1 cup of flour
  4. 1 tablespoon sugar
  5. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  6. 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  7. 1 tablespoon oil
  8. 1 large egg

Take the starter, flour and water and mix together. Let sit covered on counter overnight. The next morning add remaining ingredients. Mix everything well. Cook on hot oiled griddle.

Friday, May 16, 2008


Yeah, Oh Boy!, We are having a good time. It is Nueske night tonight at the Chilebrown house. There is Ham and Scalloped Potatoes with Nueske Bacon. I threw in a salad with Zukerman Farm Asparagus with 'Nueske Baco Bits'. We also made a cranberry,bacon,and cornmeal bread.
It is in the upper 90's today. That is an unusually high for our area at this time. We only have a couple of dozen days that it ever reaches this temperature. We are whining because of the heat. Everything was cooked outdoors today. The Ham was warmed in the Weber. The potatoes were cooked in one of my smokers. The Bread was made in a Dutch Oven. (Practice for the Rendezvous).

The Ham was put in the Weber. It was put in a large cast iron pan with a Trivet. I had to use a Trivet. It had to be done according to my Mentor and Hero, Dr. Biggles. It raises the meat from the bottom of the pan to prevent burning . I covered it with foil. I was basically heating it up. It was already cooked and smoked.
Everything turned out great. I cannot wait for the sandwiches tomorrow!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


I wish I received a royalty for advertising a company. I would accept all stipends in form of products from the Nueske company. They are running a sale that involves Free Shipping on all orders.(till May 20) This was an offer that I could not refuse. I ordered a Ham and some Slab Bacon. The bacon is some of the best I have ever tasted. It is the smoke bomb deluxe. If you have been existing on your local supermarket brand bacon, do yourself a favor and try bacon that is inspirational.

Nueske has been around since 1933. They are located in Wisconsin. They smoke their Meat Products with sweet apple wood smoke. It is my favorite choice of smoke. The bacon is smoked for 24 hours. I can consume a piece in 30 seconds. I cannot wait to make some stuffed mushrooms.
I have not tried the Ham yet. I just opened the package and I can taste it just by the smell. Is it Friday Yet?

Sunday, May 11, 2008


Martin and I were hanging out at the Asparagus festival. He asked me if I had been using any of his recipes lately. I told him that I would break out one of my favorites from his book. He was pleased. "If Yan Can Cook, So can Chilebrown."

I used to make this dish a lot back in the day. It is one of my favorites. I have not made it in a while. Of course, I put my barbeque twist to it. We made a trip to the International Market in San Pablo. This is a great store to buy Meat and Fish on the cheap. They have a high turnover of merchandise. This makes for fresh Pork. We are heading to Alemany Market in San Francisco for our vegetables. Asparagus, Mushrooms and stuff were procured at the market. We did not see Chris from 'Zukerman Farms' today. We saw him a couple of weeks back and we are happy that he is well,

  1. 1/2 cup hoisin sauce and soy sauce

  2. 1 tablespoon sesame seed oil

  3. 1 tablespoon dry sherry

  4. 2 tablespoon kethcup

  5. 1/2 teaspoon of Chineese five spice

  6. 1 teaspoon of minced ginger

  7. 1 tablespoon of orange peel

  8. 3 pounds of pork

Cut pork into steaks and marinade with rest of the ingredients.. Cook in 350 oven for 30 minutes. I put it in the barbeque with an indirect heat for 30 minutes. Serve with Asparagus Chow Mein. Good Eats!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, May 10, 2008


I love you Mom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


What puts the Chile in Chilebrown? Well today it is the shipment of Chile Peppers I just received. The 'UPS' man left me with a package of Chile Pepper Plants on my front porch. These peppers were hatched by the 'Cross Country Nurseries'. They have a mind boggling selection of different and unusual plants. I wanted to grow a couple of Bhut Joklia peppers. They are the 5 times hotter than the Habanero pepper. I am burning with a capsicum rush already. I also procured these plants; Trinidad Perfume, Czechoslovakian Black, Devils Tongue, Black Prince, Beni Highlands , Aji Rojo and the Peter Pepper.(I will leave the last one to your imagination) This is a line up of heavy hitters. There will be Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight. What will I do with all these exotic peppers? They are beautiful plants. It will be a cornucopia of color in the pepper patch. I will make marinades and salsas. The salsa will be only for the brave. I am trying to perfect my 'Elephant Repellent'. I have had great success. There have been no Elephant raids in the garden.

Let's step back in time and reflect how I became a pepper 'FREAK'. It was in the late 70's, Rex and I went out to dinner before hitting the clubs. We went to the 'Sante Fe Bar & Grill' in Berkeley California. Mark Miller was the chef at the time. We ordered an appetizer of some barbeque skewered beef. The accompaniment was a tiny bit of 'El Yucateco' hot sauce. This sauce was bright green. It had a kick that knocked my socks off. After the burn had subsided, there actually was a great flavor. I was hooked.

This was a gateway sauce, to my burning path, for a Pepper Quest. I am searching for new chile flavors. We have attended Hot Sauce Conventions. There is a pilgrimage to Stockton California every year, to buy a 50 pound sack of roasted "New Hatch Type" peppers. Chili contests have been entered and won. Chile usually makes an appearance in all my dishes. Home made Chipotle is a week long 'Smoking Adventure'. I no longer go for the big burn but will not shy away. Chile Peppers puts the Chile in Chilebrown!!!!!

Thinks he is one Hot Pepper!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, May 3, 2008


Ms. Goofy and I had a beer date with Dylan (Sourdough Monkey Wrangler) at "The Trappist" Belgian & Specialty Beer Bar. Dylan was on his way to an Oakland A's game. We were on our way to Dinner at 'Mexicali Rose'. We arrived at the bar a little before Dylan. Let me first tell you about my beer knowledge. Way back in the day, I was a beer aficionado. I hung out at one of the original Brew Pubs. This was Buffalo Bills in Hayward. Bill Owen's poured me a few beers. We made trips to Judy Ashworths "Lyons Pub in Sunol. We actually planned vacations around visiting Brew Pubs before we started having Meat Adventures.I brewed for a brief moment. I am no stranger to good beer. I know what I like and I know about different styles of beer. I do not know a lot about Belgian beers. I have tried my share of Trappist Beers. We were looking forward to visiting the Trappist. We have heard a lot of good things about this place. It has only been open for a short while. It is located in Downtown Oakland.

It is a very nice looking place. The actual bar is fairly small. There are a couple of tables in a small back room. There are about a dozen seats at the bar. We arrived shortly after they opened a little after 2 pm. We bellied up to the bar and looked over the beer list. The beer list was massive. There is 15 taps and 140 different bottles of beer. We needed some help. Ms. Goofy, Myself and one other customer were the only people at the bar. We started to quiz the bartender about what we should order. The bartender knew right off that our knowledge of Belgian Beers was lacking. We made no claims that we knew different. We were asking for his help. Well he was not much help. He read the beers on tap that were listed on the chalkboard. He recommended a beer from Lagunitas Brewing. It was a Witbiere. Witbiere is a barley/wheat top fermented beer brewed mainly in Belgium. My eyes lit up. I have always liked Lagunitas products. Bingo! I will have one of those. Ms. Goofy settled on Val Dieu Triple Beer. Fortunately Dylan walked in the door. He asked us what we ordered. He right away corrected the Bartender about my beer. It was not made by Lagunitas but Russian River Brewing. Dylan steered us to ordering a sampler. Well why didn't the bartender suggest that? Dylan knows his Belgian Beers. He rattled off a list of beers that were good. All of a sudden the Bartender became more helpful. He could match Dylan with Belgian Beer knowledge. He did not have time or inclination to help us newbies. We ordered a sample of 4 different Belgian style beers. They were most enjoyable!

That is enough of my Rant. The beer was great. The place is small and way cool. I am glad Dylan was there to help us out. The list of beers is a little overwhelming Our experience could of been a lot more enjoyable if the bartender would have had a little more patience with customers that were not Belgian Beer Experts. We defiantly will return. I still have 150 more beers to try.

The Trappist
460 8th St.
Oakland, Ca. 94607
510 238-8900

Thursday, May 1, 2008


The Other,Other White Meat. Berkshire Pork is a special treat. Berkshire is a breed of hog. Today's roast comes from the Eden Farms located in Iowa. They are a cooperative of 25 small farms. These hogs are raised in a healthy ,environmentally friendly way.The hogs are raised outdoors and are allowed to roam. They receive no hormones or growth promoting antibiotics. The meat is distinctive because it is richer and has a darker color. Today's roast is called Kurobuta. This is Japanese for 'black pork'.I was able to order this roast through Prefered Meats .

I am only prepping the pork roast with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper. It will be accompanied by some Spinach and Ricotta Ravioli's. They will be dressed with some Olive Pesto. These were both procured by the "Sonoma Olive Company". I had to throw in some Asparagus. You know I had to. I am cooking the roast in one of my favorite Barbeques. It was made by the 'New Brauenfels' Co. They are no longer in business as far as I know. This smoker is heavy duty. I use it for important cuts of meat. It is basically an oven. I can control the temperature with a side vent.

I trimmed some of the 'Fat Cap', of of the roast. I originally thought the fat was a little excessive for such an expensive cut of pork. I stuck the excess in a pan and fried it up for Mojo & Oscar. Oh! you lucky boys! Next time I will save it for sausage. The smell of the fat frying was like heaven. Is that sick? Well maybe. I just had my cholesterol checked, and I am one of the lucky ones. I guess it is all do to the Fava Beans and Life with Ms. Goofy!!!! How did it taste you might ask? It was ''Pork Nirvana"!!! The raviolis and asparagus just added to the bliss.