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Sunday, May 4, 2014

Run for the Roses...

Yesterday, May 3, 2014, was the Kentucky Derby. Now, normally, I'm not a big fan of horse racing- but this year, a local guy had a 'workingman's horse' in the running, and so Kevin and I decided to celebrate the Derby in high style!
It's a crazy thing, but this local horse, California Chrome, actually won the Derby! The owner works in Gardnerville, NV- just a couple of miles away, and lives in Topaz Lake, NV which is just a hop, skip and a jump away from us!
Anyhow, I stopped by our local liquor store, Aloha Liquor Store, which is an awesome place with great owners. Same place where we order our keg of beer for the kegerator...which we have to order tomorrow- we just ran out today! I talked to one of the staff members and told them that I... 1. don't usually drink bourbon 2. I don't like harsh liquor that tastes like, well, liquor, and 3. I didn't want to spend an arm and a leg, but I wanted a good bourbon to make some mint-less juleps.
After tasting 3 different types of decent bourbon,(Aloha lets you taste before you buy!!)  I decided on the Four Roses Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. It was very smooth, and had a nice mellow, silky feel. And the best part is that it only cost an ARM!  Yes, the tastings were all total less than one shot- and I live about 1/2 mile away, so yes, it's safe to taste and drive straight home :)
When I got home, I followed the 'classic recipe' for mint juleps...but we left out the mint. Neither of us are big fans of mint (if I have a mojito, I usually ask for it mint-less) so we added 2 teaspoons of simple syrup (1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water, boiled, and cooled) to 2 ounces of bourbon over shaved ice. We didn't have silver cups (traditional) and my copper mugs (for Mocow Mules) are packed in the garage somewhere, so we just used a short, fat 8 ounce juice glass and doubled the ingredients :) YUMMY!
OK, the picture is a little blurry, but I think I took the picture after the second cocktail, so forgive me!
We also made a classic Derby meal for dinner...Hot Browns.
This dish is named after the famous "The Brown Hotel" ...here's the story of the Hot Browns if you want to read it.
I decided to use Bobby Flay's recipe that I saw on one of his 'Throwdown' shows...and it was DELICIOUS!
I fried up a couple of slices of bacon...(there is a slice in the pan for Bridget the Yorkie) ...

roasted some tomatoes in the cast iron pan...
made a Mornay sauce with some smoked paprika,Cracker Barrel Sharp White Cheddar cheese and Grand Padano....
and I baked some 'Texas Toast' instead of making my own 'egg bread'. I also used some sliced roasted turkey from Trader Joe's and added some sauteed mushrooms as my own twist.

I put the tomatoes, turkey and mushrooms on the hot Texas Toast, added the Mornay Sauce and a slice of bacon and broiled until the sauce was browned.

It was so good!

Hope you make this- it is so Fatty Mc Fat but so delicious once a year!

This made me think of the Dan Fogelberg song, "Run for the Roses". I loved all of his music in the 80s.

Born in the valley
And raised in the trees
Of Western Kentucky
On wobbly knees
With Mama beside you
To help you along
You'll soon be a growing up strong

All long lazy mornings
In pastures of green
The sun on your withers
The wind in your mane
Could never prepare you
For what lied ahead
The run for the roses so red

From sire to sire
It's born in the blood
The fire of a mare
And the strength of a stud
It's breeding and it's training
And it's something unknown
That drives you and carries you home
And it's run for the roses
As fast as you can
Your fate is delivered
Your moment's at hand
It's the chance of a lifetime
In a lifetime of chance
And it's high time you joined in the dance

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