Mack's Corner

This Week

This week 11-10-15

Fritos and a nice 66 Rothschild

One of the little known facts about Hope is that I make all of the communion bread. I've done it for every communion service we've ever had, all 27 years. Currently I make about 150 loaves for church wide communion. People always come up to me and say how great the bread was. Of course I know that they only got a pinch of it to taste. One time I left the salt out and it tasted terrible, people still said it was great. I think what makes it taste great is that you can't have much and you only get it a few times a year. It's like Coors beer was back in the 70's, when they wouldn't ship it east of Colorado. People would drive non-stop for 2 days to bring back a 6-pack, then drink it. Because it was all gone, they could tell stories about how great it was and how it was like drinking spring water from Mt Olympus. etc...etc... It was great because you couldn't have it and people who could talked about it like it was mythical. Later when they started shipping it to Memphis, it turns out that it tastes just like everything else.. Nothing mythical about it. I once had soft shell crab at Erling Jensen's restaurant. It was one of the best things I have ever eaten. That was about 15 years ago and it gets better and better. Not only do I not eat there very often, but you have to be on time for the soft shell crab. You can't walk-in in January and say "I'll have the crab" because there won't be any in season until May. So I've had it 3 times.  I remember it being great all 3 times. When I was in College I wanted to explore everything. I was reading a magazine and they were talking about the great wines from Bordeaux France, the best in the world (this was 1972). So I went down to the wine store about a 3 blocks form campus and sure enough there they were, First Growth, Chateau M($425), Chateau MR($575), Chateau DY($400), Chateau HB($400), Chateau L($800), Chateau LR($549), 1966 vintage (Now).. about $25 a bottle (I'll let you guess the initials). I thought they were OK, I didn't pass out or anything.. I tried them all, I could get one any time I wanted, nothing special. I often sat there in my dorm, writing a program for a computer class, eating Fritos and sipping a glass of 1966 Chateau HB (my favorite).. Today, 2015, those bottles are mythical. 

God's like that: He gives us great things every day. He gives us so much that it's no big deal. We don't even realize what we've got. Instead we think about the things we can't have, the mythical stuff. We think "If I only had that, my life would be complete." .. Of course if you did have it, then there would be something else to take its place. God says your life is complete, he's given you everything you need. Just because you're not rich doesn't mean you don't have great kids. Just because you're not in good health doesn't mean you don't have friends. Just because you hate your job doesn't mean your spouse is not your best friend.. You've probably got something that a lot of people would give everything they own for just a taste.

I've got 2 of those old bottles in my Kitchen. Chateau DY has Grape seed oil in it and Chateau MR has Olive oil. I wonder if the bottle is worth anything? Maybe I just need to tell enough people that they can't have it.. Fritos, a nice 1966 First Growth Bordeaux and writing code. How can it get better than that?


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

The hardest part about this is going to the grocery store. This dressing is good on anything. You could put it on fish, chicken, mashed potatoes, or use it as dip.

Green Goddess Chicken Salad

A little History:Green Goddess dressing—a mix of mayonnaise, sour cream, herbs, anchovies and lemon—was created at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco in the 1920s, as a tribute to an actor starring in a play called The Green Goddess.


2 oil-packed anchovies, drained (Don't be scared, this makes the flavor)
1 small garlic clove
1/2 cup packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/4 cup packed basil leaves
1/4 cup coarsely chopped dill
1 tablespoon oregano leaves
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons snipped chives
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
One 1-pound loaf of ciabatta—bottom crust reserved for another use, bread cut into 1-inch cubes
One 2-pound rotisserie chicken—skin and bones discarded, meat pulled into large bite-size pieces
8 piquillo peppers (from a 9.8-ounce jar), drained and quartered lengthwise
3 inner celery ribs with leaves, thinly sliced
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved


In a food processor, pulse the anchovies, garlic, parsley, basil, dill and oregano until coarsely chopped. Add the mayonnaise and lemon juice and process until smooth. Fold in the chives; season with salt and pepper.

In a large bowl, toss the ciabatta with the chicken, piquillo peppers, celery and olives. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

The dressing can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.


Posted by Mack Oates at 1:35 PM