OUR LIFE IN 3D

The Home of Daddy's Day Dare! ~ I am just trying to stay above water

I bought my wife cooking lessons for her birthday.

Yes, I was going out on the ledge here,

hoping she wouldn’t get offended.

But she thanked me for them!

The cooking lesson was with one of Charleston’s celebrity chefs, Bob Waggoner

Chef Bob is by far more than just your average super chef.

He was trained under Great Chef Michael Roberts at Trumps (before The Donald) in Los Angeles.

He then traveled to France and worked under another dozen Michelin-starred chefs for several years, then down to Venezuela for a year to work under Jean-Paul Coupal.

In 1986 he returned to France as chef at the Hotel de la Poste in Avallon. Two years later, he opened his own restaurant, Le Monte Cristo, in Monéteau. In 1991, he closed the restaurant to join Jean-Pierre Silva at Le Vieux Moulin.

In 1994, he returned to the U.S. to work at the Wild Boar in Nashville. The restaurant received numerous awards.

In 1996, the Great Chefs television team showed up to tape Chef Bob for the Discovery Channel’s Great Chefs of the South series. This led Chef Bob to his own cooking show on PBS and later Turner South, in part because of his cooking but also due to his large personality we soon found out. 

About the same time, the management of Great Chefs received a call from the general manager of the Charleston Inn, saying that they were in immediate need of a Great Chef. Chef Bob was put together with the Charleston Place Inn management, and the following week Chef Bob Waggoner became the new executive chef of the $1000 per night Charleston Place Inn in Charleston, South Carolina.

Our evening was marketed as a dinner party with 8 other interesting people. We were to create a 3 course meal, using fresh, local ingredients as well as the executive chef ways of preparing those items.

We mingled a bit at first, finding out about our other chef trainees and  coaxed on with bottomless glasses of a French pink Champagne. Bob mingled as well and we all got to hear some of his stories in a very down-to-earth manner (he is a funny guy)

Bob had everything prepped for us

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Here are the trays of ingredients for a duck entree in front of us. The ingredients for a sea scallop recipe were on the other side of the U-shaped prep table.

I want to tell you what these recipes are called but…..

I don’t remember.

Call it old age.

Call it my beginning of dementia.

Call it the four glasses of pink champagne that I had before we started prepping dinner.

And Yes, I don’t remember what the name of the pink champagne was either but it was good!

I guess I should have taken notes.

Thankfully I did bring my camera.

First we made a dessert sauce reduction using 2 bottles of wine and a handful of fruits and spices.

This simmered the whole night while we cooked.

Next Bob had us prep the sea scallops recipe using the ingredients he already prepped for us

“Stupid Hot”

Here are a few cooking tips he gave us.

1) When slicing, cut with the back end of the knife. Keep the sharp end on the cutting board

2) He uses Grape Seed oil as his vehicle for seasoning pans. It gives off virtually no taste and you can cook with it at extremely high temperatures.

Not hot temperatures.

Stupid Hot temperatures.

3) If you are in a sea food store looking for scallops ask for the ‘Dry Packed’ scallops.

He tells us most scallops come off the vessels and are put into a large tank where they are iced down but also some preservatives are added.

These can be seen when you cook the scallops and a milky white liquid comes out from the bottom. As you can see above there is milky liquid coming out of these puppies.

Its just fresh fresh scallops and some seasoning.

No off flavors.

We seared the scallops on Stupid Hot heat then sauteed the vegetables prepped for the sauce.

We finished cooking the sauce, laid it on our plates and placed some prize scallops on top.

Viola!

Yes, I made that.

Time to taste this treat we expertly made (thanks Chef Bob).

Bon appetit!

The second course was a fantastic Duck recipe.

I forget the name but its in his cookbook.

Well I have to be honest,

I can’t pronounce the recipe either.

It was in French.

We used some sugar snap peas, sliced onion, some fresh honey, blueberries, a kumquat, and about a cup of Cabernet.

We all stood at our amazing cooking stations, first searing the duck to hold in the juiced and then baking the duck with some duck grease (think bacon grease but better) to keep it moist and yummy!

The young couple there were getting married in 2 days in downtown Charleston.

We got to hear more stories and jokes while the product cooked.

Like:

Q. Why were we using metal spatulas on the high priced Teflon saute pans?

A. Because Mrs. Waggoner was not there to tell him he couldn’t.

The duck finished.

We dressed it and viola:

Our well traveled restaurateur prize winning host DID admit….

restaurants can / may charge $5 extra

just for drizzling the sauce around the side of the plates, like above.

Can you see in the sauce?

Cabernet, blueberries, a kumquat and some honey sweet onions.

Finally. we placed some fresh berries in a dessert cup. added some yummy vanilla ice cream over top and then the reduced dessert sauce of wine, cloves, and other ingredients that I cant spell.

So in the end, I made my wife a wonderful three course dinner including

” expertly” prepared dry-packed sea scallops as well as a nice tender slice of duck.

OK,

I made it for myself and she made hers.

But she DID have a fab birthday dinner overseen by a very talented Chef,

as well as Chef Waggoner.

and lots of wine.

Oh wait, that was me,

but she didn’t mind.

The dinner was a breeze.

The object was to please

my wife as she smiled and said

“car keys” please.

That’s it for now knuckleheads.

I’ll try to do a better job next time.

Until then be safe and show someone some gratitude.

What a wonderful world

It is with both joy and sadness as we celebrate the passing of my father this month. He was a great man, not great by fame or fortune, but great as a human being.

He always smiled, would think of others before himself, and never took a harsh tone.

He spent the last 7 years in a nursing home, suffering from the progressive effects of Dementia. Here are some pics from Dad with my family. Dad’s life can be seen in progression for those who care to see my hero as he grew through life.

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Read more…

Genes

Have you heard about the change the Optometrist s are trying to make?

They want to change the term 20/20 to something else when you are seeing well.

Cause who wants to see 2020 again?

We usually don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day at our house, as some long time readers might know.

But this year…..Covid restrictions and all we decided to just stay home.

We decided to research our ancestry a little bit imstead.

Low and behold it turns out I have royalty in my blood some how.

I uncovered this picture in my research ….

What do you make of that?? Who would have thought?

There’s not a lot of information on the picture but what does my great great great great grandfather look like?

A Barron?

A Lord?

A railroad tycoon?

It’s crazy thinking what or who this guy was.

Christmas 2020 ~ the Quarantine Qwistmas

I know, I know… A little late.

Sorry, we’ve been a little busy putting an end to Christmas

…and 2020

…and getting jobs

in general this January.

Its been tiring!

(I still have one more gift to return)

It was tough being Santa this year!

Our Christmas spirit was waning with out all the fuss and relatives..

….it seemed like 2020 was even going to take a dump on Christmas too.

It started with some hardware getting inserted into one of Santa’s slay’s front tires..

Yep. that’s the inside of the tire.

But we shook it off.

We decked the halls..

Played stupid reindeer games (quarantine style)

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The 2020 Grinch couldn’t stop Christmas from coming after all…

Fahoo forays, dahoo dorays
Welcome Christmas, Christmas Day

or stopping Christmas Dinner

Thanks Cracker Barrel! They even had the WhoHash

It was a quiet, low-key Christmas in Whoville.

And, in the end, everyone got what they wanted.

That’s it for now Knuckleheads.

I’ll try to do a better job next time!

Which could be this week…

Cuzzz…

We found out last Friday that our youngest was exposed to a schoolmate with Covid the prior Tuesday.

So we are literally quarantining…

again.

 

I gave my car to a Pop Star

That’s right.

A pop star flew into town (with his family) and needed a car,

so I gave him mine.

Thankfully,

he returned it.

He also paid me,

ME,

for letting him use it.

That’s right, in today’s peer-to-peer rental society you can actually rent out your car, your home, your pool, or most anything.

Last August, when we traveled to the mountains, we actually rented some local’s Audi to get there. It was bigger than ours and we needed the space for the dogs.

So I thought, my wife works from home, and her car is just gathering dust in the garage, so why don’t we make use of it and let other people enjoy it. Covid be damned.

So we did.

We actually traded her car in for a nice SUV that others would actually rent.

And its worked!

The first month we had it, the car was rented for 24 of the 31 days in the month. That took care of the new car payment as well as some extra spending money for this MBA grad that still hasn’t found employment during this Covid thing.

The Pop Star?

Well, I hate to say it was someone I had never heard of.

But that is not unusual as I am frequently critiqued for not listening to music from this century

…..by my kids.

His name was Reese Brunke a 22 year old out of Chicago, with a huge following there. He does some pop, hip-hop and some R&B.

I asked my kids about him and they checked his youtube profile. Sure enough it had over 23 million followers so he must be huge….according to my girls.

Originally filled with a little anxiety about renting my property to a pop celebrity, as I had done that in my early years with some very tragic results. But my fears were soon relieved when I met Reese.

For 22 he was mature beyond his years, a nice guy with a good head on his shoulders.

He and his family wanted to take the car to the beach for the week. (sounds from the movie Pyscho in the background)

What if he decided to run up and down the beach with my car!

Not good!

Not good at all!

And this new generation might do anything, right?

But he was cool with everything and returned the car just as I had given it to him.

I didn’t let on that I knew who he was.

….until his Mom asked.

I said I actually did hear of him and was honored to meet such a fine and successful young man.

He asked if I had a FB or Instagram account in which he could give me a shout out on.

(Me?)

I said no, just a very unpopular blog.

I followed with how I already had a title for this post though, “I gave my car to a pop star”.

They all laughed and so now I am living up to my end of the deal.

And then, as Mom’s do, she asked if I had seen his newest video called ‘Blackout’?

Listen to it, its good

..and pertinent.

And now you all have seen it too.

Mission accomplished Maria 🙂

And so

that was my brush with fame.

…and my car’s.

Check Reese out!

He’s a great guy and I wish him much success!

I want to say something hip and cool here for a 22 yr old city guy but I am not that down I suppose.

Not at his level.

Reese, best of luck!

Come back to SC with your family again. It was great meeting everyone!

We have lots more beaches!

And I have a cooler and some beach gear you can use next time.

(for a small fee)

I could even fill the cooler with something you like.

Just let me know how you hip popular Pop Stars roll!

 

That’s about it for now knuckleheads.

I will try to do a better job next time.

Until then…..

Its time to exhale!

There’s a new sheriff in town with lots to do.

Don’t forget to wear your masks!

And show somebody some gratitude!

That way…

You can be a pop Star too!

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