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On-Topic & semi-OT: Our Easter 2011 Spread...

stikestike Posts: 15,597
edited 10:33PM in EggHead Forum
I think this year was our biggest spread, and only one minor issue. The lamb went on late because i forgot to use foil on the platesetter, and it took a while to burn off the ham's sugary drippings. Other than that, pretty flawless, for once :laugh:

some older photos here, but most are from yesterday or from preppping this week.

beautiful day for a feast. it eventually hit 81 here north of boston. this was 10 am or so

a few apps were home made gravlax...

i thought i was pretty clever coming up with using the foodsaver to do the cure. made it much easier, zero-mess. i'll do this again. rubbed the cure on the skin, laid it skin down on a bed of dill in the bag


then more cure/dill, and sealed it tight (foodsaver vacuum sealer)

not too bad slicing... :ermm:

on the table

made some chicken liver mousse
the big one was on the table, the rest are for us and or given away as Easter 'door prizes' (along with pancetta, bacon, and duck prosciutto) :)

some pancetta and bacon 'door-prizes'

pancetta, dried three weeks:


used the ends for a couple quiches my wife made


another app... i showed some pics of this a month or so ago when i mad it. it's lamb ham served with a sauce of good dijon mixed with equal amounts heavy cream.

here are the pics from before...
cure, including lavender

hot smoking (at left) with applwood, lilac)

smoked (the lamb ham in front)

it was fan-frigging-tastic

another app of duck prosciutto wrapped around mango. two types, regular salt-curd duck, and the other cured with salt/juniper/rosemary/pepper. the herbal cure a bit too subtle. next time i will jack it thru the roof


home-cured 20 pound ham, this is it hot smoking a few weeks ago

yesterday, i scored it before going on for the cook

about four hours along at 250 with some additional smoke

with mustard, brown sugar, and crushed ginger snaps, sprinkled with bourbon (Alton Brown's Recipe)

sliced pre-devouring

also did a leg of lamb.

rubbed in good ground dark mustard, many many mint leaves,, some rosemary, salt, pepper


roasted at 400+ for a little under an hour, served rare

bacon brittle
damn good, though i could use more bacon next time. greased the pan with bacon fat and butter :laugh:

home made bacon

took the sugar to 305, with bacon, red pepper flakes


and a ridiculously fantastic pavlova made by essexco's wife. i'm out of my head over this dessert. it's crazy good

essexco himself did a chocolate torte that was amazing. eggs, dark chocolate, and butter. that's it, three ingredients. no pic.... (sorry essexco)

that's it for the pics... we had some home made pickled beets (purple, gold, zebra), which amazed me with literally universal raves. my picky brother, every adult, little kids... everyone took some and enjoyed them. i was thinking it would be my wife and i eating them alone. they were home made. no pics... had some thin sliced onions in them too.

cheeses, asparagus with duck prosciutto, the quiches, fruit salads. a ton of food. many folks brought desserts, in recognition of the fact that we forgot desserts one year entirely :laugh:

this was all mostly done by my wife and i last week, along with repainting the living room, and painting/papering the entry/stair-hall ceiling and walls, as well as building a bookshelf for my books

we're wiped out :S

thanks for looking
hope you had a great weekend
ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante


  • Susan EgglaineSusan Egglaine Posts: 2,437
  • dugdbugdugdbug Posts: 244
    Its like a dream :cheer:
  • That is unfreakingbelievable. What a spread!!!!!

    We went the other way, laid on a beach all last week and had steaks, baked spuds and asparagus with a couple of friends last night.

  • Capt FrankCapt Frank Posts: 2,578
    That is all fantastic, plus painting the house! :ohmy:
    When do you find time to work? :silly: :laugh:
  • Is that all?? WOW! An unbelievable spread you put out there. You friends and family are very lucky people. Take the rest of the week off!
    Happily egging on my original large BGE since 1996... now the owner of 6 eggs. Call me crazy, everyone else does!
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 19,610
    amazing spread :) i caught 8 salmon, let them all go, ate some tuna straight from the can, later cooked some riblets :laugh:
  • MaineggMainegg Posts: 7,787
    incredible Jeff... just incredible.... Ummm any vegis? and I am a pavlova fan too.. just something about it.
  • gdenbygdenby Posts: 5,269
    Holy Moly! Just lookin' at all the food, I can't get out of my chair!

    Having tried once, and failed miserably at gravlax, I'd be happy to hear your method sometime when you've recovered from that immense production.
  • Little ChefLittle Chef Posts: 4,725
    Stike: Wow! Wow! WOW!! You were one busy man! I hope your guests are the type that appreciate the efforts that went into all that charcuterie work! A very impressive spread to say the least! Looked into the lamb ham and will be trying that soon. Hope you can have a down day or two to recover.
    Also, curious, how long did you cure that honker ham!?
  • vidalia1vidalia1 Posts: 7,091
    You are the Man, the Legend, the King.... B) ;) :)

    All that and you can't drive 1 1/2 to NH for an Egg fest.... :whistle: :pinch: :ermm:

    Amazing food & pics.... :) :)
  • AZRPAZRP Posts: 10,116
    Incredible spread! How many were you feeding? -RP
  • reader40reader40 Posts: 69
    I don't even know what to say about that except MY GOSH! that looks unbeliveable!
  • MaineggMainegg Posts: 7,787
    he says that EVERY YEAR Kim LOL
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    my wife and i, and our two sons, 10 and 8. the youngest eats chicken nuggets, so three people, really.
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    just kidding... was about 20, friends and family, actually.
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • AZRPAZRP Posts: 10,116
    Had me scratching my head there for a second. :laugh: -RP
  • Grandpas GrubGrandpas Grub Posts: 14,226
    Wow, that is a lot of work. Those pictures sure look wonderful. Thanks for posting.

  • Woah. You should have labelled your thread "pic light".

    Peanut brittle is a favorite of my wife. She was surprised at how much she loved Rick Bayless's bacon pecan streussel (on top of vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce), so I'm definitely going to have to try making her bacon-peanut brittle. How much did you pre-cook the bacon? Risk of overcooking in the sugar? or did you add it immediately before cooling the candy?

    Please elaborate on "good" dijon. What do you look for in evaluating? i.e. how does it differ from the American standard?

    Lhamb: same curing process as american pork ham? (wet brine, injected?) Were you following a recipe that had a recommended curing time, or were you able to evaluate how far the brine had progressed, and adjust?
  • Cpt'n CookCpt'n Cook Posts: 1,917
    Very nice job Stike, looks great.
    We did the Alton Brown ham again this year and it came out perfectly. It's a nice recipe.
  • ranger rayranger ray Posts: 812
    you should cater the royal wedding!////// how's the lilac for smoking?..... i have tons of it around my house.... it never occurred to me to use the wood!?? why.... i don't know..... thanks! rr
  • beesbees Posts: 335
    What a beautiful series of cooks,I bet you were only able to feed the lower state of Mass. Was the salmon already smoked before brining? Thanks for sharing, Randy
  • RRPRRP Posts: 19,327
    Quite the spread there, dude! Bet you WOWed a few people!
    L, M, S, Mini
    Dunlap, IL
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    added the bacon towards the end so it wouldn't overcook, but it was pretty crispy to begin with

    by "good" i meant just a decent dijon. a solid grey poupon-level mustard is fine. :laugh:

    the lamb ham is dry-cured, no injecting (was boneless). i followed victoris wise's recipe in "American Charcuterie", which was a recommendation by LC
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • atlpatsatlpats Posts: 102
    Incredible looking spread!! I especially enjoyed the way you staged some of the photos, looked like they were from a cookbook.
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 10,154
    jeff, you guys do nice work! great food and great pics!!! curious though - what type of lighting do you use for your photos? they always look so good.

    I will not eat oysters. I want my food dead. Not sick, not wounded... dead.

                                                      Woody Allen

    Central Connecticut 

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    "lighting" :laugh:

    i have nothing but one overhead round fluorescent light in the kitchen, and it's usually off. the only open space in the kitchen to work on is near the kitchen sink, near a window.

    the sink has a drain board both sides, centered on a window, and that's the only light i have to make work. flash doesn't work well, so i usually try to hold the camera still and use no flash. so all the pics are lit by daylight 99.9% of the time.

    here's a shot showing the set up. though this is from the other side of the sink

    it's not that it has great light, or looks cool, it is literally the only counter space to work on. one corner, two feet on one side and the sink for two feet on the other. kitchen is 8x10 or so.
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 10,154
    That's the problem!! I very rarely cook before it gets dark!! hahaha. Even in summer. Might be worth getting my butt in gear earlier, just for the light! Thanks, Jeff.

    I will not eat oysters. I want my food dead. Not sick, not wounded... dead.

                                                      Woody Allen

    Central Connecticut 

  • ZippylipZippylip Posts: 4,528
    I wanted to say something awful because I don’t like you much, but that is the most impressive series I’ve ever seen on this forum
  • MaineggMainegg Posts: 7,787
    god I want that sink.......... :(
  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 28,159
    I called dibs a long time ago


    Caledon, ON


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