Months ago, four, to be specific, an idea of a grill and outdoor furniture for this condo was formulated. It wasn’t my idea. Props have to go to Brian (you know who you are) for the suggestion and direction and to Emy for her tireless efforts to get it done — not always an easy prospect around these parts. But enough of the logistics of a killer grill getting to my house, let’s talk people and food and a general all around fun and delicious Friday night.
Actually, there isn’t much “talking” needed here, other than this …
This grill came into my life on Friday. It’s a thing of beauty and once I heard the purhase was going to be made it didn’t take a New York minute for me to realize I’d be cooking with gas and I announced I was going to host a spontaneous Parrillada! We were going to break bread and break in that grill together. A Friday night Parrillada at my house! My first!
I loved that there was no hesitation, that although it was a very last minute invitation, all but 2 people were able to drop everything and come over to share in the fun of breaking in a brand-spanking new grill with me! We were missing two team members, but we’ll do it again — very soon.
After going to the market and coming home with enough groceries to feed most of San Pedro Sula we prepared for hungry guests to arrive.
Emy proclaimed, “I don’t know how to cook!” and was put right to work preparing the Chimol. She did a great job! Everyone loved the tangy salsa with a kick.
I prepped the steaks. They were labeled as Rib Eye and I couldn’t see into the packaging because … well, they had clearly been previously frozen and the defrosted liquid kept me from getting a good view of the meat until I opened the package at home. There was no marbling and the texture of Rib Eye just wasn’t there. I’m going to guess it was a lesser cut of beef, but see all of that up there? It’s not all of the steak I picked up. There was over 5 lbs. of meat and it cost me just $20 and the best part … it was grilled! Almost everything tastes great on a grill, right?
Carlos helped us out in the kitchen with a few straightening up details and he looked a little surprised about it.
Why does it not surprise me that “The IT Guy,” Jonathan, who we all rely on to keep us connected at work was a wizard at lighting the Fundido thingy (my tech word for traditional clay fondue pot — Anafre) and as the photo shows, he didn’t spare anything to get the fire going.
I think it was a personal challenge, but after a little while he struck pyrotechnic success and we had flames with a method of fire-starting I hadn’t seen before.
The fundido was a success.
Gearling stepped right into multitasking by prepping and chopping the celery and onions for the Celery Salad and then moved onto the fundido, frying beans, cooking chorizo and adding the flair needed for a treat that was scarfed up quickly.
So good! A tortilla chip, chimol and fundido fixin’s! I sure wish I had some of that right now. I have to say, it beats nachos from a restaurant.
Ana is another team member that doesn’t get into cooking, but she was all about showing us she can cook corn if need be, and with a smile on her face to boot! I made the mistake of leaving the cobs on the grill far too long so it was more like cow corn, but the char on the kernels make me happy and while we had a lot leftover, I have big plans for that corn tonight. Think corn bread with Jalapeño peppers.
Once again, Emy is at it. I whipped up a quick barbecue sauce with Molasses, soy sauce, ketchup, vinegar, Sriracha sauce, and a splash of hoisin sauce. Nothing difficult — it just adds the right amount of sweet and salty to the chicken with a hint of Asian flavor.
As usual, the kitchen is a big meeting place — until the food is ready, that is. Vanesa looks ready to eat and Mario appears to see something that makes him either scared or anxious. Not sure which. Carlos, on the other hand is all about the food. You can see it in his face.
I’m pretty sure I was a bit too eager with the corn purchase. Emy tried to contain me, but my stubborn side won — this time. Lesson learned.
Herman got into grilling duties, once Jerry figured out how to get all of the burners turned on and get the heat back to grilling temperature so we could eat cooked, rather than raw carne. Thanks Jerry!
Not sure was this debate was all about, but food soon cured all.
There was no ensalada caprese left at the end of the night even though you could barely see the tomatoes. Tomatoes are always refrigerated here which makes me nuts but they keep some of the Romas out on the other tables. They’ve been refrigerated as well, but even though the bag I picked up was cold, there is some measure of confidence in the tomatoes I put in the cart. I knew that the oil and vinegar I would be putting on the stacks would help with the texture and lack of taste of a formerly refrigerated tomato. Hmmm… can you tell I have issues with refrigerating tomatoes?
Ana, Emy and Gearling helped finish the set up and were ready to eat with the rest of us. I can’t wait to do this again!
Finally. Food time. Buen Provecho! Thanks guys, you made it a fun night and I finally feel like I’m home.
And really, can we have a casual BBQ without Red Solo Cups?! No, these aren’t the actual brand. The store only had Blue Solo Cups and, well, it just didn’t seem right.
(Warning, this is not the edited version. What fun would that be?)