It was one of our first warm spring evenings! Yay! It snowed last week, and this week it is practically summer.
I wanted to take it easy so the Handyman grilled up some Italian sausages and I made a potato salad and some baked beans.
I found this recipe for baked beans with "a kiss of bourbon" on this website "amazingribs.com" and thought I would give it a try. I adapted it quite a bit...actually I just added bourbon/whiskey to my own recipe.
It was really easy and it was really good. I thought it funny that the author put in a side note to Texans, an alert to them, if you will.
He said if you are from Texas you might not like these beans because they are sweet. That's the way the rest of the nation likes it's beans. Sorry.
(kind of like cornbread....the rest of the nation likes it a bit sweet)
We also had a funny moment in front of our liquor cabinet (pantry--like we would have a liquor cabient!)...the recipe calls for 1/4 cup Kentucky Bourbon or Tennessee Whiskey.
We had Kentucky Whiskey, so the Handyman didn't want me to use it.
We did and he loved these!
I made them in the oven, but you could slow cook them on top of your grill or smoker, or even on top of the stove, if you'd like.
Bourbon Kissed Barbecue Baked Beans
1/2 pound bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
1/2 onion, chopped fine.
1/2 green pepper, chopped fine
3 cans (15oz) of your favorite beans --you can mix and match. I use kidney beans and pinto beans.
1/4 cup of your favorite bbq sauce
3 T. Molasses
1/4 cup brown sugar
4 T. Kentucky Bourbon or Tennessee Whiskey
Mix everything together and put in a Dutch oven or bean pot and bake in a hot oven 375 degrees, uncovered for 1 hour.
The Handyman, loved, Loved, LOVED the beans this way...with the addition of the bourbon.
The taste was very subtle.
*for the amazingribs.com recipe, they had raisins and jalapeño as well as some other seasonings such as mustard and a bay leaf. I did not use any of these. Mine was pretty basic.
It is late Friday evening... and while the Handyman is watching a movie, I thought I'd take a few minutes to post about Flashback Friday, a meme hosted at Lovely Little Shelf.
Every Friday we’ll post about the books that we loved. Do this however you want. You can outline the plot as you remember it, tell why you remember this particular book, talk about how it is still affecting you, whatever you want. This part is totally up to you. Feel free to nab the little guy up top and put him at the top of your blog post.
Come over to Lovely Little Shelf and comment (with a link to your blog) on my Flashback Friday post. Explore each other’s childhood book loves.
Don’t feel like you have to participate every week, although that would be fun! Anyone is welcome to join at any time.
I have a book shelf in my spare bedroom, that is full of children's books and while I was straightening it this morning I came across "Meet the Austins" by Madeleine L'Engle. The same L'Engle who wrote "A Wrinkle in Time."
I love Madeleine L'Engle. I loved A Wrinkle in Time, but I think that Meet the Austin's is my favorite L'Engle book of all time.
The Austins were the family I wanted to have...before I had a family.
They listened to Brahm's Second Piano Concerto, and made standing rib roasts and used phrases like "we all love him tremendously." They were noisy and chaotic and had a Great Dane named Mr. Rochester.
It was the kind of book that gave you a warm feeling inside. The Austins were a family with 4 children, whose lives are interrupted when their parents bring home an orphaned girl to stay with them for awhile. She makes life rather difficult for them, but as the story develops all five children grow and flourish in their relationships with each other. It's funny at times and sad at times, but basically just the story of a loving and likeable family.
I enjoyed the Austins in a number of other books too, they have been characters who have stayed with me since my own childhood.
They feel like old friends.
These books by L'Engle all feature the Austin family:
Meet the Austins, 1960
The Moon By Night, 1963
The Twenty-Four Days Before Christmas, 1964
The Young Unicorns, 1968
A Ring of Endless Light, 1980
The Anti-Muffins, 1980
Troubling a Star, 1994
Miracle on 10th Street, 1998
A Full House, 1999
Madeleine L'Engle writes both children's books and adult novels. One unique thing and what I especially love about L'Engle books, is that they are all connected. One of the recurring themes in L'Engle's fiction is the interconnectedness of all things. The books themselves reflect this idea; nearly all her fiction books can be linked.
I love the "Cross and Connect" theme. If you want to see how her characters are linked together (and more) check out this site.
L'Engle's best-known works are divided between the "Chronos" and "Kairos" frameworks. The former is the framework in which the stories of the Austin family take place, and is presented in a primarily realistic setting, though occasionally with elements that might be regarded as science fiction. The latter is the framework in which the stories of the Murry and O'Keefe families take place, and is presented sometimes in a realistic setting and sometimes in a more fantastic or magical milieu.
Most of L'Engle's novels from A Wrinkle in Time onward are centered on a cast of recurring characters, who sometimes reappear decades older than when they were first introduced. The "Kairos" books are about the Murry and O'Keefe families, with Meg Murry and Calvin O'Keefe marrying and producing the next generation's protagonist, Polly O'Keefe. L'Engle wrote about both generations concurrently, with Polly (originally called Poly) first appearing in 1965, well before the second book about her parents as teenagers (A Wind in the Door, 1973). The "Chronos" books center on Vicky Austin and her siblings. Although Vicky's appearances all occur during her childhood and teenage years, her sister Suzy also appears as an adult in A Severed Wasp, with a husband and teenage children. In addition, two of L'Engle's early protagonists, Katherine Forrester and Camilla Dickinson, reappear as elderly women in later novels. Rounding out the cast are several characters "who cross and connect", Canon Tallis, Adam Eddington and Zachary Gray, who each appear in both the Kairos and Chronos books.