This Week

Mack's Corner

This Week

Got to go see

I'm in charge of the fire alarms at church. If it goes off I get called. If it breaks I get called. I've got my phone set to put the problem calls in voicemail, but if the fire alarm goes off, that's different. For everyday stuff there's one thing that worries me: balloons. If one gets away in one of the rooms that have beam detectors and it gets in front of the beam detector, then the fire alarm goes off. Beam detectors are 2 little boxes that shine lights on each other from across the room. They're happy as long as they see the other's light, but if something gets in the way, like smoke, a balloon, an electrician's head, then they set off the fire alarm.  It's usually at 3am that the fire alarm goes off and if it's after a big event I know it's a balloon stuck on the celling and the air conditioner has blown it in front of a beam detector… I just know it, happens every time.. I hate getting up. I hate getting dressed. I hate driving back to the church, but you never know, maybe there really is a fire, I have to go see, I just have to.

We turned off the water to the whole building one day. That always puts a bunch of air in the pipes. The hot water was almost fizzing. You could run hot water in your hand and it looked white for about 5 seconds, fizzy. I flushed one of the toilets and it had the fizzy water too. Hot water in the toilets? We have a strange thing that happens every once in a while, Hot Water Toilets. The hot water has more pressure on it than the cold water and if you connect the two together, like we used to have in the mop closets, then hot water comes out in strange places. We decided it could be a new feature .. Great Coffee, Great Music, & Hot Water Toilets .. Maybe we could put that on the front sign... So anyway there I was flushing this toilet and its fizzing and I just had to see, I had to touch the water to see if it was really hot. I know I stuck my hand in the toilet, but I just had to..

God's like that, you may think you know what's next in your life, but maybe not. God knows, you know you've got to get up and go see, you've got to. I'm way more interested in what God's going to do next than what I've done in the past. I might meet somebody who will change my life or be put in a situation that teaches me something new. God may use me to show himself to somebody else. God may use me to change somebody's life and I get a front row seat to see it. You never know, you just got to go see. Quit hiding, stick your hand in..

I've got to go work on that "Hot Water Toilet" idea, maybe I can sell it to The Peabody, The first Hotel with HWT, you can't get any more hoity toity than that…


Cooking 220 - 2 pans, 2 burners, 20 minutes:

One of my favorite places to eat in San Francisco is Charles Phan's Slanted Door in the Ferry Building. The Ferry Building is right at the foot of California Street and Market Street on the bay. Order anything on the menu that says "Clay Pot". It has one of the greatest sauces I've ever had … I always wondered how they did it, now I know … 

You can see a Video of Charles Phan making Clay Pot Chicken with Caramel Sauce Here:
Clay Pot Chicken with Caramel Sauce


Yield: 6 servings


2 pounds fresh shell-on shrimp (16 to 20 shrimp, heads optional)

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 pound brown palm sugar, chopped into pieces (available at Asian markets - There's a great one at the corner of Winchester and Hickory Hill across the street from New Direction Church) or Dark Brown Sugar

1¼ cups fish sauce (available at Asian markets)

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 shallots, thinly sliced

2 Thai chiles, halved diagonally(Asian markets)

¼ cup finely chopped lemongrass (from the fleshy base of 3 stalks - Asian markets)

1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic (about 1 clove)

One 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks

¼ cup chicken stock or water

3 cups steamed white rice, for serving - or see standard rice recipe below


1. If using head-on shrimp, use scissors to remove the sharp spikes at the tail and in the center of the head. Cut off the eyes and discard.
Separate the head from the body and set the heads aside. Peel each shrimp body, removing the tail, then devein. Sprinkle with pepper and set aside.

2. Make the caramel sauce: In a large saucepan set over medium-low heat, gently melt the sugar, stirring frequently, until the sugar is lump- free, completely melted and just beginning to boil, about 12 to 14 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and very slowly stir in the fish sauce (it will bubble up). DO NOT STICK YOUR FINGER IN THIS TO TASTE IT!!! IT IS VERY HOT! BE CAREFULL!!!

3. In a large, high-sided skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the shallots, chiles and reserved shrimp heads (if using) and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the lemongrass, garlic and ginger and cook for 1 minute longer. Stir in the chicken stock and ½ cup of the hot caramel sauce. (Leftover sauce can be refrigerated for several months.)

4. Add the shrimp to the pan and toss to coat. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring occasionally, until the shrimp are bright pink, about 6 minutes. Transfer to a platter and serve immediately, accompanied by the steamed rice.


Basic Rice Recipe:

Cooked rice:
2 cups of rice in a 2 qt sauce pan. Jasmine rice is best (Asian markets-
very cheap).. Enough water to cover by 1 inch (one knuckle) Bring to a
boil, cover and put on the lowest heat you can get .. if you don't have a
heat diffuser put a skillet on the burner and put the sauce pan in the
skillet .. cook for 18 min or until rice is fluffy and tender .

Stir in 2 tbsp of butter and a little salt and pepper ... taste it, smell it ..
great isn't it ..


The great thing here is that now you know the recipe for the sauce =
everything but the shrimp…. So you can do this with Pork, Chicken,
Vegies, sliced beef, fish, mushrooms… anything … Just do step 2 & 3 and
leave out the shrimp heads .. then add your meat/veg/mushrooms/fish
as in step 4 ..

Trust me! This is great!!!!!!!


How about saving a kid's life!!

When you give Platelets it's like giving St Jude $700 - $1000. If we don't give them, they have to buy them.

Giving Platelets is like giving blood, it just takes longer (1 1/2 hours) and you get all of your blood back (so you can do it every week if you want) . I know it's a long trip to go all the way down to St Jude, but you may be saving a kid's life . plus you get to watch a movie while you're there. Call Kim at 901.595.2024 and she'll setup an appointment and treat you like family. Just tell her you're from Hope.

Directions: From Poplar, turn north on Third Street, then right on Lauderdale/Jackson Ave (first right after you go under the expressway). Enter through the north guard gate (you'll see the Danny Thomas Pavilion. Gold top).

Tell the guard at the gate that you are here to donate blood. The guard will instruct you where to park. You will then enter the hospital by the red side door closest to the blood donor parking lot. The Blood Donor Center is in the southwest corner of the hospital on the ground floor.

Appointment times are generally available Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Except on Tuesdays they start at 9:15am.

See you this weekend. Bring a friend. It's going to be great!!!



Posted by Mack Oates at 12:49 PM