Mack's Corner

This Week

Dress like a Matador!

I drove by a clothing store advertizing tuxedos last week. I can't even imagine what I would do with a tux, but it made me remember prom night. I guess every high school senior in America is getting ready for their prom in the next few weeks. I couldn't tell you a single thing about my prom other than we had it on one of the river boats as it went up and down the Mississippi river and that I wore a tux. I can't remember the name of the girl I took. I couldn't tell you what we had to eat, or what songs the band played. I don't know what day it was or where we went after it was over…. But I remember the tux… At some point the week before I had seen a TV special about Matadors, bull fighters in Spain. It told about how they trained and used fake bulls to practice and watched themselves in mirrors be sure they were standing correctly and looking like a true Matador. It told how they lived and how people cheered them when they walked down the street… But the thing that impressed me the most was the way they got dressed before the fight. It was a ceremony. They were usually assisted by a dresser, a guy who knew exactly how to dress a Matador. He knew which part to put on and in what order. He knew how things should be tied or wrapped. He never talked to the Matador, neither one said a word. The Matador was focused on the fight. If he didn't it might be his last. Every fight was seen as the Matador's big moment, the thing he had been preparing for since he was a child. He was dressing for that moment …. That's the way I put on my tux. I was dressing for the one moment that I had been preparing for my whole life…

Gods like that: Ever feel like you've lived your whole life getting ready for this moment? I know a single mom who's mother died from breast cancer. She's starting a new job being an oncology nurse. She didn't know when her mother died that God was dressing her, getting her ready. She didn't know being single mom was God tying a belt around her so she would know how it feels when a woman with cancer is left alone… What has God been preparing you for … Dress like a Matador! It might be today …..   

Maybe I'll go rent a tux… I bet I can find a cow someplace …


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

New Orleans Continued …

There were too many great things to include from New Orleans to stop now… Here's another one from John Besh's "My New Orleans". One of the best cookbooks I've ever seen from one of the best chefs in the world… This simple recipe demonstrates one of the great secrets of cooking grits, rice, polenta, mashed potatoes, or anything that you wish had a creamy, rich taste… add a soft white cheese or cream and butter ... Best Cheese Grits in the Whole World! The Whole World!!

Jalapeno Cheese Grits

1 cup stone-ground white corn grits (or just any grits. Cook by directions on the box)

1 jalapeno pepper

3 tbsp butter

2 tbsp mascarpone or cream cheese (mascarpone is best)

¼ cup grated Edam cheese


For the grits (if using stone-ground): heat 4 cups of water in a large heavy pan over high heat to a boil. Slowly pour in the grits while whisking constantly. Reduce heat to low, cover, cook for 20 min stirring occasionally.

While the grits are cooking… place the jalapeno in a skillet over high heat and roast it. The thin skin will blister and turn brown. Roll it around in the pan so that it gets blistered and brown all over. Let it cool a little, then remove the skin and cut it in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and mince the rest of the pepper. Add the pepper to the grits… (Wash your hands after, don't rub your eyes. It will burn) 

When the grits are done, remove the pot from the heat and fold in the butter, mascarpone, and Edam cheese.. season with salt..

Remember the BBQ shrimp we did a few weeks ago? That would be great on top of this… or for breakfast: this and a fried egg and some sweet and sweet and the richness of the egg and mascarpone cheese…. Yummmm..



Posted by Mack Oates at 11:11 AM