Friday, July 1, 2011

Origins Game Fair: Big Mike's Hospitality

If you're lucky (like me) when you attend Origins in Columbus, Big Mike will offer you hospitality.  Snatch it up.  I arrived Thursday night and was kept well fed, well rested and half in the bag until I left on Sunday.  Due to the weather we went out for dinner until Saturday, when Big Mike fired up the grill and declared we were eating in.  Here is a dinner prepared by two bachelors.

Green Beans
The green beans were prepared with red pepper, onion and a little bacon fat.  This is the only way to enjoy green beans.  I'm told that the secret to the beans is getting young green beans so that they are tender enough to eat.

Fresh asparagus - eat your heart out, HistoryMikePhD!  I used to revile asparagus as an inedible weed placed on my dinner plate by relatives with evil intent.  Little wonder, as I was only served asparagus when I dined at my Grandfather Tightwad's house.  The weed in question grew wild in Grandfather Tightwad's back yard, and since it was edible there was no sense in letting it go to waste.  Grandma Martini would cook the stuff to within an inch of its life and throw it on a plate, sans sauce of any sort.  The stalks were as big around as my middle finger, which, quite by coincidence, could be used to display my feelings about the pile of stinking green mush on my plate.  I have since revised my opinion due to being served fresh, young asparagus with thin tender stalks that has been prepared correctly - as this was.

Future Hollandaise Sauce
One of the first things I learned to cook correctly was hollandaise sauce.  Put a little hollandaise on anything and you can get people to eat it.  These ingredients were combined with some frozen butter over low heat, and when the sauce thickened it was used to enhance the asparagus.  This was my own contribution to dinner - Big Mike did the rest of the cooking.

Main Course - Steak
Big Mike got the steaks at North Market, a remarkable store near the convention center.  The store grows its own beef, which is of excellent quality.  We had to wait while the steaks were cut, which was time well spent.

Finished Product
Perfection has been reached!  Few people dined as well as we did that evening.  The steaks were perfect thanks to Mike's skill with the grill in the back yard. 

Desert was a generous portion of Laphroaig ten year old scotch whiskey and coffee made from Brazilian coffee beans that Mike buys green and roasts himself, producing a coffee that's as smooth and rare as the scotch.

Here's how!

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