Sunday, July 6, 2008

Battle Blue Foot Chicken - July 6, 2008

We had a small, but lively group for Battle Blue Foot Chicken. The Park was jammed packed with the remaining July 4th crowd and the Corvettes put on a great, up-tempo show of Rock & Roll oldies.

Our menu was fabulous again. Although Pam hinted at painting her toenails blue and sweet-talking Colonel Sanders at KFC for a bucket of chicken, she surprised us with Pam’s No-Time-for-Chicken Macaroni Salad (see the cute picture of sous-chef Olivia getting ready to serve the salad).

Kai made Larb, "the unofficial national dish of Laos and also a common dish in Thai is a meat salad, most often made with chicken, beef, duck, turkey, pork, or even fish, flavored with fish sauce and lime...the meat is minced and mixed with chili, mint and, optionally, assorted vegetables" (yes, I got this from Wikipedia). We wrapped Kai’s tasty Larb in lettuce leaves and it was excellent.

Chef Brad came through with Tomatoes Stuffed with Brad’s Famous Chicken Salad. Brad’s Chicken Salad is not your everyday chicken salad...his is complemented by Pistachios and roasted garlic (check out the photo of Max oohing and awing at those tomatoes!)

If you couldn’t taste the garlic in Brad’s tomatoes, you most certainly tasted it in my Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic, from Ina Garten’s Barefoot in Paris cookbook. White wine, Cognac and a little cream finish off the gravy.

John made his famous Chicken Nachos, with a hint of chipotle, all the fixins' and surrounded by blue corn tortilla chips, and then bid us farewell before leaving for a 3-week diving gig in Oregon and Washington.

Congratulations to Bill and Janice, who joined us and shared the happy news of their engagement and wedding plans. It was a great evening and finale to a festive and long holiday weekend!

We now must deal with Battle Blackfish. After consulting Google, I learned the following: Blackfish, also known by its Native American name Tautog, is found from Nova Scotia to South Carolina and most abundant from Cape Code to the Chesapeake Bay. They are distinguished by their large lips and teeth, which are used to catch and eat their favorite foods, shellfish and crabs. Blackfish has a relatively firm white meat, which makes it well suited for a variety of different preparation methods including fish stews and chowders. In fact, in many seaside towns, blackfish is the traditional ingredient in fish chowder. "It's a mild tasting fish somewhat like sea bass," says George Leeman of the Shinnecock Fish Dock. Blackfish can be used in almost any recipe that calls for lean white flesh fish with a mild taste like cod, sea bass, tilefish or halibut.

Again, because it is probably impossible to find this fish locally, I consulted Kai and we both agreed all chefs may substitute any "lean white flesh fish with a mild taste." Let the Battle begin...

Denise & John

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