Monday, July 9, 2007
The Backyards of Greenlake and Ballard
Here's a new concept: the summer in July. Here's another new concept: friends with backyards. Put em together and what have you got? No, not "bippity boppity boop", but rather the spontaneous and relatively rampant sprouting of the most american of american gastro-indulgences, the mighty BBQ into my sun shocked keester.
Up until very very recently me and BBQ's have been somewhat at odds insofar as I've never quite followed suit due to, as many of you know, certain pesky vegetarian tendencies clinging to my proverbial palate like so many barnacles (unless of course said barnacles happen to be Prince Edward Island mussels in which case I encourage said clingning.....yummmmmmm). The majority of these hang-ups are seemingly irrational and isolated fears of various meaty textures: the all-too-visceral reaction to slicing into a steak, the ruby fleshyness of sushi, and, the piece de resistance, the mealy pearly fatty meaty pattyness of bbq'd chuck.
But dear readers, recently something has shifted. I dont know if it is acute sunstroke or the rather credible encouragements of a few of the pacific northwest's more credible and carniverous foodie friends, but I'll be DAMNED if this particular brutha hasn't chowed down not one but TWO of the aforementioned wretched meat-disks in the past week. For those of you NOT conducting research for my biography, that is two more burger pies than I've crammed down in the last 12 years and as such I must say, I've got it bad.....real real bad.
I was spoiled though. My chopped-chuck-cherry was popped not by a soggy Big Mac but by hand made patties of 20% fat content beef lovingly littered with beautifully forward chunks of bleu cheese and bacon and grilled over a smoking hot charcoal ( NOT propane but charcoal) grill by, frankly, folks who know what the fuck they be doin. Burger numero uno down. Check. No remorse, no food phobic guilt or self-induced sickness, just good old fashioned cowey goodness.
Burger numero deux came a mere few days later at yet another BBQ ( two BBQ's in one week....who knew?!). This was, as I quickly found out, an inadvertently Coors sponsored event which filled me with both a sense of pride AND overwhelming dread (akin only the transcendental thrill of becoming a father yet tragically simultaneously becoming a father to a really really really FUGGGGGGGGGGGGLY baby). Anyway, 17 or 18 cold activated bottles later and I'm practically tearing chunks out of party-goers rear ends I want some red meat so bad. So to the grill with me....this time with SHIT ASS tubular pre-packaged and pattied Costo-esque hunks (the radically opposite and yet equally delicious end of the burger spectrum, fyi). Thick cut olive oil soaked sweet onions on the grill, charcoal licked white buns, dijon, mixed greens, and a little melted cheddar and I sware to my dear hobbling christ that I was ready to convert forever to bloody church of burgerism (though, tragically, pickles were missing....EH HEM....is it a Jew thing I ask you?)
What the FRICK is my point you ask?! My point is that cow tastes god damn splendid....ESPECIALLY when its all ground up and humiliated and barely recognizable. I hear, in fact, it is PARTICULARLY muy delicioso when served mid-rare....all drippy and moist and faintly bloody. But hey, I'm still warming up to the whole process so just take er easy on me will ya and keep the god damn Coors Light comin....it's sure to help