Crouton’s Fortress of Smoke™

I’m starting an equipment & technique section on this blog. This post is the first entry for the new section … the subject is Crouton’s Fortress of Smoke™; specifically some techniques for setting up and using a Weber Smoky Mountain cooker.

In the past Ditalini and I have smoked and devoured salmon, turkey, chicken, duck, […]


Fourth Rule of Cooking Club

Don’t overload electrical circuits.

Members of our cooking club met last night at the home of Magret de Canard for our second attempt at a do-it-yourself dinner, this time to cook our own meats and vegetables on raclette grills. Everyone had a role to play in preparing dinner beforehand: Houskový took charge of the roasted […]


Separating Egg Yolks

Don’t worry about the language. You’ll get it.

Is that cool or what?


Fresh Hatch Chiles

This entry isn’t a recipe, though it’s closely related to one, Crouton’s New Mexico Green Chile Stew. I wanted to share a bit of local color with you, namely the Hatch green chile roasters who set up shop in front of our local Safeway during the season. Here they are with their gas-fired roaster, burning […]


Crouton’s Grilled Salmon w/Potatoes & Green Beans

This is easy, and always good. It’s a dinner a husband can cook and a wife will love.


Salmon 2-3 wild salmon filets (1 to 1 1/2 lbs) 1 tbsp butter 1 tbsp honey fresh dill Potatoes 12 small red-skinned potatoes 2 tbsp butter fresh dill Green Beans 1/2 lb fresh green beans […]


Beer Can Chicken on the Barbie

Beer can chicken on the barbie (with sweet potatoes)

Everybody has a barbecue beer can chicken recipe. How is mine different? It isn’t, but I’ll try to make up for that by discussing good techniques for cooking it.


whole fryer chicken seasoning half a can of beer


Remove the giblets, rinse and […]


Italian Family Barbecue Revisited

Here’s the original recipe, if you want the details.

Grilled artichoke, polenta with onions & peppers, Italian sausage

A few variations this time around. We recently bought a new gas grill, and in my zeal to protect it and make it last forever, I’m using grilling pans and sheets. You can see them in […]


Baking Potatoes on the Grill

Sweet potatoes (w/beer can chicken)

This works well with baking potatoes, sweet potatoes, or yams:

Under running water, scrub dirt off potatoes and rinse, then pat dry. Leave skin on. Pierce potatoes lengthwise with shiskabob skewers, then wrap in foil.

The skewer does two things: it pierces the potato so that steam can escape, […]