- Sunday Gravy with yeah right: Sweet and Spicy Thai Style Chicken Wings – August 2, 2020
- Sunday Gravy with yeah right: Grilled Gochujang Ribs! – July 26, 2020
- Sunday Gravy with yeah right: Cannelloni – July 19, 2020
Good morning everybody!
Hope everyone is maintaining sanity and social distance. We’ve got to keep pushing on, it’s our only option.
I was mentioning the other day that I spend hours each day reading about our current world situation, not because I’m forced to but because I seek it out. When trying to read something else, maybe as a much needed distraction, it just seems so fucking insignificant in comparison. Last week I read this incredibly in-depth article from The Atlantic regarding what we are in store for, resetting expectations etc. The segment on resilience had this to say…
“During the Vietnam War, Vice Admiral James Stockdale spent seven years being tortured in a Hanoi prison. When asked about his experience, he noted that optimistic prison-mates eventually broke, as they passed one imagined deadline for release after another. Stockdale’s strategy, instead, was to meld hope with realism—“the need for absolute, unwavering faith that you can prevail,” as he put it, with “the discipline to begin by confronting the brutal facts, whatever they are.'”
That’s all we have.
We have to be realistic because there will never be a “Get back to normal” moment. There will only be a new normal whatever that is.
I don’t want to be a downer, in fact I want to use this more as a message of strength. We can and we WILL survive this.
Now let’s get back to business.
Welcome back to Sunday Gravy everybody!
Easter is another meal, like our Saint Patrick’s Day feature, that occurs every year on Sunday Gravy. Shit, I think there’s 5 years of them give or take?
And as keeping with tradition, the menu items don’t change a whole lot.
Here’s last year if you want to compare it to today’s banner image.
Looking kinda similar isn’t it? All the way down to the fresh rolls. No mac and cheese this year but another familiar dish.
First thing we have to take note of, most of the meal ingredients here were found on the first weekend of the pandemic. Eldest brother found the ham, in fact the entire meat section was empty that day with the exception of hams. I grabbed the fruit cocktail…
From my neighborhood 7-11 as it was one of the only canned food items left. I still had my last package of yeast – I’ve subsequently found more – along with plenty of flour for the rolls, and we lucked into potatoes and onion for the gratin potatoes. No goddamn garlic though and that’s still pissing me off. I’ll show you what I came up with as a quick fix for that a little later.
My primary point today is that we did have a delicious Easter ham dinner by everyone pitching in and being creative. Everything we made today has been featured on a previous episode or two so I’ll get you some new photos, a quick synopsis and we’ll do it that way.
One major difference today: it was just my two brothers and myself for dinner. I texted and chatted with eldest right and youngest right sent me some video of youngest granddaughter doing an Easter egg hunt in her living room. Fuck yes I missed the hell out of them not being there as they have been every year for-fucking-ever.
Not this year though. We’re taking this shit seriously.
Let’s get after this fucker.
I’ll do this in the order prepared.
3/4 cup of 95-100 degree water
1 package of dry active yeast
1/4 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of salt
3 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 beaten egg
2 tablespoons of room temperature butter plus 2 more tablespoons of melted butter for basting.
Get your yeast, sugar and warm water into your mixing bowl and let the yeast proof for 10 minutes.
Mix together the flour and salt and beat up that egg good and proper while the yeast is proofing.
Dump all of the ingredients right into that mixing bowl.
Get your hook attachment for the mixer and attach. Set the mixing speed to the first or second setting and let ‘er rip.
Set a timer for 10 minutes and let that mixer do all the goddamn labor for you. That’s why you paid as much as you did for it yes?
When the 10 minutes are up, remove the dough, shape into a lovely circular shape and place into a large bowl that’s been lubed with oil.
Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until the dough doubles in size. Anywhere from 1-2 hours. I had my stove going most of the day so no issues with the rise.
After the dough has been risen, remove to a lightly floured surface thusly:
Slice the dough in 4ths, then slice each of THOSE into 4ths, yielding 16 little dough balls.
And (sighs) cover with a kitchen towel and let rise again. Yep, another hour.
Right before cooking they should look something like this.
Into a preheated 375 degree oven for 15 minutes. When done, baste the rolls with the remaining 2 tablespoons of melted butter and we got some gatdamn rolls.
I’m giving you the large photo because these came out fucking gorgeous.
Holy shit, yes! Damn near professional grade right there!
I went 11 for 16!
Let’s get to work on the ham.
Here’s what we scavenged this year.
I have no goddamn idea what a fucking “Crunchy glaze” entails and I sure as shit wasn’t about to find out today.
It came with a packet of goo that, needless to say, did not grace the outside of my fucking ham.
Let’s get a look at what we had to work with.
Yeah, that’s a pre “spiral sliced” ham and while I would normally prefer working with an unsliced version? We found a motherfucking ham in a pandemic! I ain’t gonna get too choosy.
That fruit cocktail I mentioned earlier provided the fruit juice for today’s glaze which was most goddamn certainly NOT of the “crunchy glaze” varietal.
For continuity sake I started this ham prep while the dough was doing its first rise.
Let’s make a bastardized glaze today. If you suspected that pineapple was not available then you’re one smart motherfucker.
Anybody else here fucked around with fruit cocktail when they were younger?
Ma used to add whipped cream and a sliced banana and call it “fruit salad.” My Grandmommie added coconut to the same concoction and called it “ambrosia.”
It was served straight up as is today as a side. We did need the juice from it though to make our glaze.
That got your attention now didn’t it?
Simple glaze today with the fruit juice, a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, a tablespoon of dark brown sugar and a couple of shots of bourbon. Mix well.
Place the ham flat side down in a baking pan and distribute the glaze evenly over the ham.
Cover the ham with foil and cook in a preheated 275 degree oven for 15 minutes per pound. This was about 9 pounds so it went for right at 2 hours.
While the ham is cooking and the rolls are on their final rise let’s make our tasty ass side dish for the day.
Gratin Potatoes! – ish
this would be the normal “non-pandemic” recipe
2 pounds of peeled and THINLY sliced russet potatoes.
2 cloves of minced garlic (goddammit!)
1 pint of half and half
3/4 cup of grated Gruyère cheese.
A few slices of onion, thin sliced like the potatoes – I’ll get to that.
1/2 teaspoon of thyme
1/2 teaspoon of NUTMEG!
Some fresh grated Parmesan. Oh course it was Parmigiano Reggiano.
Salt and pepper to taste
Now let me show you how I did this version.
Peel your potatoes and get out the mandolin. Slice into a slightly lubed baking dish. First potato.
Then similarly slice a few slices of onion and follow with the last of the potato.
Mix together the half and half with the nutmeg, salt and pepper then add in the grated cheese. I had no luck finding Gruyère this year but DID manage to procure a very nice Dutch gouda that worked fine.
This is also where you would normally add your minced garlic (fuckers.) Since I was out I used 1/2 tablespoon of granulated garlic.
But I just couldn’t leave it at that! No fresh garlic? Fuck off!
Shifting the brain into overdrive mode I had to come up with something.
THEN! An epiphany! In my refrigerator right at this very moment was this…
A container of hummus with roasted garlic right in the middle!
Goddamn right I did!
I know, I know but it was better than just granulated garlic! Plus maybe a little hummus could do something? I don’t know what but it couldn’t hurt.
I added the garlic to the wet mixture and combined.
Pour this mixture evenly over the potato/onion and finish off with some grates of the parmesan.
These will cook in a 375 degree oven for 35-40 minutes.
Let’s get you the time sequencing for today’s meal:
Make the dough and while it’s doing its first rise, prep the ham and get in the 275 degree oven for 2 hours. Remove the ham and leave the foil cover on. Increase the oven temp to 375 and start cooking the potatoes. Fifteen minutes before the potatoes are done get the rolls in the oven allowing them to finish cooking at the same time as the potatoes.
That ham will stay plenty warm enough while finishing everything else. Let the potatoes cool for about 5-10 minutes and it’s fucking service time!
You know who would have been of help here? My son-in-law, He usually does all of the “holiday meat” slicing. I can’t slice a slab of meat for shit.
Cut out a wedge of that potato dish, get some ham on there, yes even grab a spoonful of the fruit cocktail and finally a couple of them rolls.
It was fucking delicious! Damn near brought tears to my eyes. That ham didn’t need no goddamn “crunchy” glaze when we can make our own.
Those potatoes were fantastic despite the glaring lack of garlic. Shit, even the fruit cocktail worked to cut the saltiness of the ham.
Them rolls though?
That’s the motherfucking money dish right there. Break one of them rolls in half then put a slab of that ham on there?
My bread game’s getting strong as shit y’all!
We did it!
This is top goddamn notch Easter family dinner here.
I miss my daughters and I miss my granddaughters and son-in-law but if all goes right? Maybe next year.
Be strong everyone.
Endeavor to Persevere!