La Bomba Del Amanecer

bomba1Sweet.  Messy.  Totally fun.

It’s Abraham Lincoln’s birthday today!  To celebrate, I have created a drink to honor his memory.  Happy Birthday Abe!

WOOOOO!!!

WOOOOO!!!

Okay, maybe that’s not entirely true.  Tequila doesn’t really symbolize our 16th president.  But it does symbolize Mexico (to an extent), and Linocln was a friend of Mexico: Abe opposed the Mexican-American War, and in return Mexican president Juárez refused aid to the confederates (and actually jailed rebel soldiers that went to him to ask for help).  So this drink more symbolizes our continuing friendship with our neighbor to the south.

¡Olé!

Okay, I’m pulling that out of my butt, too.  This drink doesn’t have anything to do with friendship, unless you’re talking about my relationship with liquor, in which case, it’s not friendship, but eternal love.  However, today is Lincoln’s birthday, so DRINK UP!

bomba2La Bomba Del Amanecer

– Tequila
– Cerveza (Mexican Beer)
– Grenadine
– Orange Juice

The real reason I made this drink is because I wanted to create a ‘bomb’ drink, which is a drink in which you drop a shot of liquor into a beer, and I wanted it to involve tequila.  Now there is already a Mexican Car Bomb out there (it’s a shot of tequila dropped into a cerveza), so I needed to bump it up a notch.

  • Fill a glass ½ – ¾ way with a cerveza of your choosing.
  • Fill one shot glass with tequila.
  • Fill another shot glass ¾ with orange juice, and then pour grenadine slowly down the side so it pools on the bottom of the glass.

    bomba3

    Like so.

  • At the same time, drop each shot glass into the cerveza, with the tequila going in first.
bomba4

Thusly.

  • Swirl the glass once.
WARNING - Splashing may occur.

WARNING – Splashing may occur.

  • Chug.  Chug it!  Don’t be a wuss; this is a bomb, not a fine wine!  CHUG-A LUG IT!

This is essentially a mash-up of a Mexican Car Bomb and a Tequila Sunrise, hence the name, which my Spanish speaking friends assure me means Sunrise Bomb (although I don’t really know; I can barely speak English).  I wasn’t quite sure how this mix would turn out, but I am glad to say that it surpassed all of my hopes.  Instead of mixing all together, the drink tastes more like it was layered.  If I can get poetic here for a moment (and like you can do anything to stop me), it’s like watching an actual sunrise: the night of Cerveza first, then the agave flavor of the tequila starts to shine, which then is coupled with the cresting sun of orange juice, and then the pure sweetness of the grenadine of the full sun at the very end.  It’s incredibly tasty, a lot of fun, and can get you pretty drunk if you’re not careful.  In other words, it’s the perfect drink for a hot summer day.

bomba5Enjoy!

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Hair of the Dog Noodles

A Meaty, Sweet & Savory, Guilty Pleasure Recovery Meal

Phew.  All this drinkin’ catches up with a man.  Unless you’re incredibly lucky (or unlucky, depending on your view of things), we all have had to deal with the after-effects of a hardcore party.  Queeziness, headaches, slow reflexes, etc.  And it’s times like those that you want food that tastes good, is easy to eat, will fill your stomach, and give you back some shred of dignity.  What I’ve made will help you with those first three; you have no chance with the fourth because someone took pictures of you trying to make out with that floor lamp and we’ve all seen them.

You see that pack of walnuts? Fuck those walnuts, they snuck in there.

Hair of the Dog Noodles

– 8 oz of Wide Ride Noodles
– Pack of Bacon
– 4 oz of Sausage/Ground Pork
– 4 Eggs
– 1-2 Bulbs of Shallots (Sliced)
– 1-2 Garlic (Minced)
– Handful of Chives (Chopped)
– 5-6 Large Mushrooms (Sliced)
– Butter
– Soy Sauce
– Maple Syrup
– Salt
– Pepper
– Shot of Jack Daniels

This is essentially a Drunken Noodle recipe, but some ingredients have been changed to make it more breakfasty and American.  It’s also not going to be as spicy as your run of the mill Drunken Noodles since I’ve taken out the Thai Chilis; a hot pepper is just enough to push that hangover nausea to a full-blown “Can I make it to the toilet before I BLAAARRRGGGG?!!” moment.

  • Preheat oven to 400°.  When ready, bake the pack of bacon on a foil-lined baking sheet for 20-25 minutes, or until crispy.  Yes, I said to bake your bacon, and yes, I said to use an entire pack of it.  This is a hangover recovery meal, not an example of health.  Set aside when finished.
  • Soak and soften noodles in boiling water.  When done, drain, rinse, and set aside.

A note on the noodles – The kind of noodles I use are wide rice noodles (also sometimes labeled as rice sticks), an Asian noodle available in any Asian market, or online, if those kinds of markets aren’t in your area.  In the end, any Asian noodle will do; just don’t use normal pasta.

Yes, it does matter; stop arguing with me.  Never argue with a chef, especially if he’s drunk.

“It’s up to you whether I beat JUST the eggs!”

  • Beat eggs in a large bowl.
  • Melt some butter in a large skillet.  When hot, pour in eggs, and create a large, thin omelet – this can be made by constantly shaking the pan until egg mixture is mostly solid, and then flip.  Set aside.
  • In a large pan/wok, cook the sausage/pork.  Set aside.
  • Crumble bacon, cut omelet into 1” x 2” sections, and pour sausage into a large bowl.
  • In the same pan/wok, heat some oil.  When hot, throw in garlic, shallots and mushrooms.  Fry until soft.
  • Throw in drained noodles.  Mix well.
  • Pour and mix in 2 – 4 tablespoons of soy sauce.
  • Toss in 2 tablespoons of butter.  Mix until completely incorporated.
  • Salt and pepper noodles to taste.
  • Pour in bacon, sausage, and eggs.  You must mix it.
  • Pour in ¼ cup of maple syrup.  You must mix it.
  • Pour in a shot of Jack Daniels (this is called ‘Hair of the Dog’ Noodles, after all, and the whiskey compliments the syrup). You must mix it.
  • Now mix it into shape; shape it up; get straight; go forward; move ahead; try to detect it; it’s not too late; to mix it . . . mix it good (WHIPCRACK).

    Hold on, let me turn down my stereo; it’s starting to affect my writing.

  • Add in chives.
  • Serve.

Now, I know this seems like some reject from Epic Meal Time, but once the dish is made, it’s not all that; the amount of noodles helps spread out all the protein, syrup and liquor.  What you end up with is something that is equally sweet and savory, crispy and soft, simply delicious and ‘who gives a crap as long as it helps with the hangover?’  My roommate, who ate much of the finished dish, stated that it was the perfect hangover meal because it was easy to eat.  I think he meant that you didn’t have to do any hard work to consume it, like peel any fruit . . . or, like, chew it.  Every single bite will taste like glorious mix of every breakfast you’ve ever had.  Not for the vegetarian, nor the health-conscious, but perfect for a household full of drunks after a wild and crazy house party.

Enjoy!

The Spicy Cucumber

Spicy, sweet, crunchy . . . and different.

I was lamenting to my girlfriend while on a date at some small sushi bar I don’t remember the name or location of about how I was running out of ideas for the food portion of my blog.  I had done all the drinks I had concocted over the years, but the well had run dry.  I had experimented with food, both expensive and cheap, until my budget no longer allowed me the comfort to do so.  There was always the option of blogging about diet and exercise, but that would take something like 30 weeks to finish (it actually took 35), and I was too lazy at the time to consider starting that.

My girlfriend sighed, held up the Japanese beer we had split, and said to just do something with Japanese beer and sake.  A lightbulb went off in my brain, and I exalted that she was a genius.  She told me she just wanted me to shut the fuck up, which is a feeling I cause in almost all my friends, family, and random passersby.  It took me a long while to get the right mixture of ingredients, but I finally hit it on the nail.

Hey . . . where’s the god damn cucumber?!

The Spicy Cucumber

– Sake (one shot)
– Ginger Ale
– Green Tea (2 Bags)
– 1 Cup of Sugar
– 1 Cup of Water
– Cucumber
– Wasabi Paste/Powder

A Word on Wasabi – It’s going to be a rare thing if you actually find real wasabi outside of Japan.  The wasabi root is hard to grow and is very rare.  It’s expensive even in Japan, and that’s where it grows.  If you’re a culinary snob who argues that sake must be served chilled, or hot, or tepid, or served out of the ass of a howler monkey (all of which are legit ways to consume sake, by the way, it all just depends on the season . . . the monkey option, for example, is a Spring affair) and demand that all of your ingredients be authentic, good luck.  I’ll be getting plastered for the eighth time over here while you’re still looking.

  • Boil a cup of water in a small pot.  Place two bags of green tea (it doesn’t have to be the really good kind) in the water to seep as it comes to a boil.
  • When water comes to a boil, remove from heat and in a cup of sugar, stirring until all the sugar is dissolved.  Let syrup completely cool, then store in an airtight bottle.
  • Fill a tumbler with ice and pour in sake.

I have mentioned how I measure alcohol in a tumbler before in the Mint Tea Gin & Tonic: pour until the liquor just reaches the top of the bottom ice cube.  I have since been told this is a drunk’s way of measuring liquor.  Well . . . call a spade a spade I guess. Otherwise one shot should be fine.

  • Pour in 1 – 2 tablespoons of Green Tea Syrup.
  • Fill the rest of the glass with ginger ale.
  • Cut a slice of cucumber (I did mine with a fancy spiral cut).  Spread wasabi thinly on the cucumber (I bought the powdered kind, so while making the paste I added some of the syrup to make it sweeter), and place it on the side of the glass.
  • Serve.

Now you can drink the cocktail and eat the cucumber at the same time, letting the flavors mix together in your mouth.  This will give you the sweetness of the drink and the full power of the wasabi.  But after many trials, a hang over, and some more trials, I discovered that it’s much better to plop the cucumber slice into the cocktail before you drink it.  The wasabi will mix gently with the liquid, making the drink spicier as you go through it.  And after you’re finished with the drink, you get to eat the cucumber which is now spicy from the wasabi, sweet from the syrup, and still wonderfully crunchy.  Serve this to your friends and they will be very surprised, and very refreshed.

Enjoy!

Phil and Rosco Discover the Meaning of True Love

Phil and his wife are having dinner out with Rosco and his new girlfriend Belinda.  They are all at a fancy restaurant, in nice clothing, chatting over wine.

PHIL’S WIFE: (laughing)  It’s so great to get out on the town.  It’s hard to get Phil out of the house these days.

PHIL: I’m right here.

BELINDA: We’re out all the time, but it’s always to crazy and strange places.  I find it relaxing just to sit down and eat a simple dinner with this one.

She gestures to Rosco, who is stuffing leftover appetizer bread into his jacket pockets.

ROSCO: I enjoy the fast lane, what can I say?

PHIL’S WIFE:  So how long have you two been seeing each other?

BELINDA:  About seven months now.

ROSCO:  Six.  Seven months ago I was still stuck in that jail cell in Tijuana.

PHIL:  What’d they lock you up for again?

ROSCO:  Something having to do with trying to steal a bunch of chickens.  I honestly don’t remember though.

PHIL’S WIFE:  I’m surprised we haven’t met until now.  Ros usually brings all of his friends by our house the moment he meets them.

ROSCO:  Yeah, I had to twist his arm to set this up.  Although, to tell you the truth, I feel like I know Phil already with as much as Ros talks about him.

PHIL’S WIFE: (sighing) Yeah, these two are pretty inseparable.

BELINDA: I was beginning to think he was hiding me from Phil.

Phil and Rosco start laughing.

PHIL:  That’s preposterous; you’re lovely.

ROSCO:  I told him so.

PHIL’S WIFE: He was probably hiding Phil from you.

PHIL: That sounds more plausible.

PHIL’S WIFE: They’re very protective of each other.

BELINDA: I guess.

ROSCO:  We’ve been building on this friendship for several years now.  It’s like taking care of a car you built from scratch.

BELINDA: When did you two meet each other?

PHIL:  In college.  We roomed together for a year.

BELINDA: I can imagine what kind of crazy parties went on in that apartment.

PHIL:  Actually, we never had a party in that room.

PHIL’S WIFE: Really?

ROSCO:  Yeah.  We didn’t even really start drinking together until a couple of years later.

PHIL’S WIFE:  I never knew that . . .

ROSCO:  Yeah, I wasn’t much of a drinker until this guy came along.  Frankly, he was one suave shrug away from getting me totally wasted that year we lived together.

PHIL:  Really?

ROSCO:  Yeah.

PHIL: Now you tell me.

ROSCO:  Well, I never thought it was such a big deal.  One of the reasons I never drank before then was because I never had a good enough reason to drink.

PHIL:  Yeah.  If I’m honest, I felt the same way back then.

They both stop eating and look at each other.  Silence.

ROSCO:  Phil?

PHIL:  Ros?

Rosco reaches across the table, Phil extends his arm, and they grasp each other’s forearms as if they were knights greeting each other on the battlefield.

ROSCO: You give me a reason to drink.

Phil gasps.

PHIL: I . . . I’ve waited so long to hear that.

They share a moment. 

ROSCO:  WAITER!

A waiter appears.

ROSCO:  Two mugs of whiskey for the gentleman and I/

WAITER: Would you like a single or –

ROSCO:  Two MUGS of whiskey, pronto!

The waiter hurries off.  Phil’s Wife and Belinda simply sit and stare at the full grown men, who now have tears in their eyes.

BELINDA: Ros?

PHIL’S WIFE:  Shhh.  It’s best not to disturb them when they are in their “Bro-mance” Mode.

PHIL:  (not taking his eyes from Rosco) CURB THY TONGUE WHEN SPEAKING OF OUR LOVE, WENCH!

ROSCO: Yeah!

A waiter appears with two mugs.  Phil and Rosco each take one.  They look at each other, clink their mugs together, and then raise them high above their heads.  Silence.

PHIL & ROSCO: May we never go to hell, but always be on our way!

They quickly drink the mugs of whiskey in one go.  They slam down the mugs, share one final moment together, and then go back to eating their meal as if nothing happened.

BELINDA: What just happened?

ROSCO: Magic.

PHIL: (to his wife) You’re going to have to drive home.

PHIL’S WIFE: You don’t say . . .

ROSCO: Yeah, we have about fifteen minutes before we turn into blithering idiots.

PHIL’S WIFE:  I’ll get the check.

BELINDA:  That was crazy.

PHIL:  Not really, but you might want to finish your meal quickly.

They all eat.

ROSCO:  Wait . . . so are we, like, married now?

A Few Thoughts on Drinking

As a man who loves to drink, I have spent quite some time at different bars, restaurants, clubs and homes exploring the world of liquor.  It’s not so much that I’m an alcoholic (although I know many who would refute that) but over time I have come to realize that it’s not the effects of liquor I enjoy, but the actual taste of the liquor itself that I love.  There is a whole world to booze that I find fascinating and captivating, but it is a world that takes effort to enter.  The differences between Jack Daniels and Wild Turkey are very subtle until you get your tongue tuned to them, at which point the differences are glaring and obvious.  I have come up with not so much a guide, but ideas to keep in mind if you want to become a connoisseur.

Know Your Limits

It’s important to know how your body reacts to liquor: how fast it metabolizes in your system, how long it takes for alcohol to hit you, which ones will leave you with a worse hangover.  Everybody is different, and until you know your exact limits all you’re doing is drinking blindly.  To appreciate liquor you must be able to keep yourself from going over the edge, or even getting to the “A Little Tipsy” stage.  You have to be able to keep yourself in the “Warmed Up” area for a prolonged period of time, and that takes not just knowing the liquor but also yourself.

We All Have Bad Experiences

I know this will make me throw up, but hell that's a small price to pay for love.

That being said, to know your limits you have to go past them, and you can’t be scared to do so.  It’s one of those times where you’ll only know where the line is once you’ve crossed it.  And once you know where that line is you can’t be afraid to walk up to it.  I’ve heard many people who have had a bad night with tequila and then sworn it off for the rest of time.  We’ve all had a bad experience with tequila.  It’s fine if you’re not interested in becoming a connoisseur, but if you claim to “love drinking” then this line is just an excuse.  For this purpose, drinking is about not being afraid, and in learning hobbies the failures teach you as much as your successes.

That Rule of “Liquor before beer, In the clear, Beer before liquor, Never sicker” is Bullshit

I have mixed all kinds of liquor in all sorts of combinations and the reason I got sick is because I just drank too much too quickly, not because I started with beer.  This doesn’t really come into play with the hobby of drinking, I just hate this rule.  I drink what I want, when I want.

Do Research

I've read this sentence 18 times and I still don't know what it's saying. Time for another belt.

Find out how the individual liquors are made.  Research how liquor actually impacts the human body.  Find out why real martinis are stirred not shaken.  Know what taking it “old fashioned” means.  Understand how temperature changes the viscosity and taste of alcohol.  Learn all the basic cocktails by taste alone, and learn how they are made.  The more you know the deeper the experience.  But . . .

Cocktails Do Not An Experienced Drinker Make

Drinking is not like juggling, where the more experienced you become the more things you can juggle.  The more you mix with your liquor, the easier it is to drink.  This is great if you want to get plastered, as a drink with a ton of alcohols will do the trick in no time (for example, Long Island Iced Tea, a name I’ve never really understood since there’s 0% tea in it).  But you also don’t taste any of the liquor, and taste is the name of the game in this respect.  It’s okay to start off trying different cocktails, but at some point you will have to progress to simple cocktails, and then after that you will have to go to taking the liquor straight.  Don’t be scared.  And I’m not saying you have to give up cocktails.  My favorite drink of all time is a Gin & Tonic and it’s primarily the thing I order every single time.  But if you want that connoisseur title, you got to put down the margarita and take that tequila on the rocks.

Be A Person With Standards, Not a Snob

A person with standards will never order cheap stuff or drinks that are more sugar than liquor.  A snob is someone who judges others for not ordering drinks how they order them.  The first one is the tao of drinking, the second will leave you drinking alone.

Scotch is the Pinnacle

How many of you would I kill for this bottle? ALL. ALL OF YOU.

No one starts off liking scotch, but scotch doesn’t care if you like it.  Scotch is like a Magic-Eye puzzle; until you learn how to taste it, until you know the method, you’ll never get it.  But once you do, an entire world of magical shapes and colors appears.

Don’t Give in to Peer Pressure

Don’t let your friends push you faster than you are willing to go.  If you’re not interested in getting plastered and you really want to enjoy your drink, then fuck ‘em.  If they don’t understand that you’re not trying to get drunk, or you would rather pay more money for one drink than getting twice as much for the cheaper stuff, let them go sit on a tack.  In a few years you’ll be able to sit back and really enjoy a glass of 60 year old Morlach and be an example of class and experience while they are throwing up in the bar toilet.  That might seem silly now, but the older you get the more you realize drinking until you’re sick is one of the stupidest ways to spend your time and money.

That being said . . .

Take the fucking shot, you sissy.   Remove the stick from out of your butt for a second and remember that drinking is also about friendship and fun.  The fine liquor is too expensive and it takes a long time to develop your tongue to them to be drinking it all the time.  You’re at a dive bar, not visiting some castle in the barony of Westmorland.  Kick off your shoes, take a shot of Jack, and get hammered until screaming “Come On Eileen” at the top of your lungs is not only the best idea you’ve ever had, it’s the best idea anyone has ever had.

And not with karaoke or with the jukebox, either. Just start singing.

The Cherry Garcia

Liquorfied Ice Cream = What My Childhood Was Missing

For those of you who don’t know me well or a little or at all, I love alcohol.  I love alcohol.  I want to have a sex change operation or pray to the goddess Aphrodite to give me ovaries so I can have alcohol’s children.

Or pray to Odin to turn alcohol into a woman that can bear my children. I go back and forth on the matter.

During my senior year in college while I was trying to deal with a surplus of rum that I happened to have at the time, I discovered that rum mixed with cherry coca-cola tasted a lot like my favorite flavor of Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream, Cherry Garcia.  It was my first experience in liquor tasting like other foods (e.g. Flaming Dr. Pepper, Irish Car-Bomb).  It also marked the beginning of The Era of Blackouts, a period of time I know I would feel ashamed about if I could only remember it.  Since that day I have continued to work on the formula and I have recently perfected it!

The Cherry Garcia

– Cherry Rum
– Cream Soda
– Bing Cherries (2)
– Chocolate Fudge Shell Syrup

  • Chill a tumbler in the freezer.  At the same time, cut a wedge out of two cherries, place them in a shot glass full of the cherry rum and also place in freezer.  (I left the stems on the cherries because it made the photo more interesting but I would suggest you take those out.)
  • Pour chocolate fudge shell syrup (look here if you want to make it yourself) into a small saucer.
  • When tumbler is thoroughly chilled, place it upside-down in the saucer so the rim is covered in hardened chocolate.  Replace in freezer.  Repeat this four or five time, or until the rim is covered with a healthy layer of chocolate.
  • When the rim is finished, put some ice in the tumbler.
  • Pour in the shot glass full of cherry rum and cherries and then fill the rest of the glass with cream soda.
  • Serve immediately, as the chocolate rim won’t stay firm forever.  If you’re not going to start drinking the moment it’s done, put back in the freezer.

What you end up with is a cocktail that tastes exactly like Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia.  Creamy, cold, a hint of cherry and a taste of chocolate with every sip!  And save the cherries until the very end, you’ll thank me.

Enjoy!

I Can’t Learn From My Experiences Unless I Make A List Of Funny Observations

– I am capable of having 12+ drinks a day without any noticeable ill effects.

– Apparently, the color of the ocean is supposed to be blue.  LA living has not prepared me for the utter blue bluey blueness of the ocean.– The opposite of “yoink” is “plop”.

– The real New Orleans is outside of the French Quarter, just like the real Los Angeles is outside of Beverly Hills.– The little stick figures I draw on all the bills I sign for to spread joy actually works!

– I’m afraid I am losing my hair.

– Gin Martinis > Vodka Martinis, no question.

– Working out everyday while on vacation is absolutely feasible.

– Dieting on vacation, however, is not.

– Cruise lines aren’t staffed by Americans.  I only met 1 or 2 American workers on the ship the entire time.  It was explained to me that the cruise doesn’t pay enough.  “If they paid well, all these jobs would be filled with Americans.”

– Louisiana Pain Perdu > French Toast, bar none.

– I could get EXTREMELY used to fine 3 – 4 course meals for dinner.

– Travel + Chain Restaurant = Silly

– In America, the distance between extreme poverty and extreme wealth is usually miles.  In small countries, you only need to turn your head to the next house.

– Being required to use your passport to travel and but not having it stamped is a great injustice.

– Freshly made pizza, available 24/7, is a dangerous thing.

– If you always talk out of your ass but happen to be right at least 50% of the time, you aren’t intuitive, you’re lucky.

– Southern Comfort Manhattans ROCK!

– The best time to start taking photos/videos of your vacation is while you are packing.

– It’s easy to live without the internet for a couple of weeks as long as you don’t mind the feeling of constant information flow being replaced with ignorance of daily affairs akin to a Neanderthal’s.

– It is not easy for me, however, to live without my guitar for two weeks.

– On Isla Roatan, the houses have no numbers on them.  They are known bu their colors instead.  “I live in the true blue house on the south side of the island.”  I support this system.

– To calm a turtle down, rub the underside of their neck.– The money saved at Duty Free Shops

– Standing on the highest desk on a moving boat singing “Never Gonna Give You Up” loudly in the middle of the night is awesome.

– Even though I have spent, in rough estimation, maybe a year – year and a half with my father all together, it is extremely apparent that I am my father’s son.

– It had been 13 years between this vacation, and my last.  I am afraid that it will be just as long until my next vacation.