It’s been an eventful weekend (as the title of this post might suggest).
First there was a tailgate party followed by the Atlanta Braves double-header Saturday in honor of two of my favorite people who have birthdays just a few days apart. My contribution to this celebratory tailgate was an attempt to satiate my unquenchable desire for some Peruvian Chicken. If you’ve lived in the DC Metro area and you’ve stumbled upon the glory that is El Pollo Rico or any of the other very popular peruvian chicken chains in the area you understand my longing. Peruvian chicken is the perfect combination of crispy flavorful skin over some of the moist-est and most delicious chicken you’ll ever taste. It’s cooked on a rotisserie spit in a brick oven and the taste is completely un-matchable.
The spice mix they season the chicken with is apparently a closely held secret as I’ve spent the entire 6 years I’ve lived in Atlanta trying to find some match for it. I’ve found several recipes that are close but there’s just something missing that I cannot put my finger on. I suspect given my ongoing addiction to it that the secret ingredient might be crack cocaine. After all, when I lived in the area, I ate peruvian chicken at least twice a week to stave off the shakes and even though I’m six years (almost seven) “clean” by force of the 10 hour drive between me and my lovely El Pollo Rico I still get withdrawal symptoms just thinking about it.
I’ve found several recipes for it but have yet to actually find an equal substitute. There is a restaurant in Decatur, GA that has some peruvian chicken and it’s *almost* the same glory that is my favorite DC chain but they lack my favorite yellow sauce. You see, peruvian chicken is three-quarters about the chicken and a quarter about the dipping sauces. My preference is a “mild yellow sauce” as opposed to the “spicy green sauce” but I hear that different chains have different versions and that there may be a spicy yellow sauce floating around out there too that I’ve never tried.
But, looking for a quick and easy tailgate grill food, I thought I’d marinate some chicken wings in a recipe that claims to be my beloved peruvian rub. I’ve never made wings before, and it did occur to me that I should perhaps choose a food I’ve made before to serve at a party but I wasn’t the only one bringing grillable food so I figured “what could go wrong?” So, I used this recipe and crossed my fingers that it would satisfy my desire for that crispy, juicy, spicy deliciousness.
The chicken was fine (but still missing some mystery ingredient) and thanks to Justin for grilling it (and testing done-ness of the first wing by risking salmonella via the ‘bite test’). And it was tasty (although needed more salt I thought). But since I realized my mayonnaise was 5 months expired it was lacking the yellow sauce (which is basically mayonnaise, mustard, and lime juice as best as I can tell).
Then just as the party was in full swing, everyone was fed and we were getting the flip-cup action going, the cops shut us down. Apparently there’s some rule that you have to vacate the parking lot of Turner Field after the game starts. Since it was a double-header we tried the “uh, we’re tailgating for the second game” excuse. Let me tell you, this
asshole lovely cop was not hearing it. In fact, she sat there yelling at the tailgate next to ours with her hand on the butt of her gun in very intimidating fashion as a few of their more assertive party-goers tried to ask questions. We used the opportunity to pack up in a hasty manner (and video the entire exchange because we were SURE she was going to use her taser on one of those guys from the tailgate next to ours). She even yelled at me for ‘standing around’ while I was waiting for my friends to get out of the porta-potty. Look lady, even with a badge and a taser, you can’t control the call of nature. She’s a real peach. So, I’d like to take this opportunity to inform Turner Field that you will not be getting our parking funds any longer. We’ve already researched alternative tailgating locations and have settled on a new location that will let us tailgate longer – especially before a double-header. And, I’ve checked the website and there’s nothing there about this ‘must cease tailgating after the game starts’ rule…so I call shenanigans.
So after narrowly avoiding being arrested and/or tasered we proceeded to the game with Karen’s purse packed to the hilt full of hotdogs. (We’re classy – and frugal).
Then Sunday I decided I would be all productive and get dinner in the crock pot, make a loaf of bread and let the bread maker do the work. And I was in full swing in the kitchen when I dropped the biggest glass bowl I own and amputated my toe. Ok, so it wasn’t amputated but as you can see from the below picture, it was a pretty severe injury. I thought about leaving the bloody footprints all over the kitchen floor to freak out the cleaning lady but decided that was pretty unsanitary.
But honestly, my roommate saved my life…or at least a toe. You see, I was in the kitchen barefoot. And all the shards of glass were between me and the broom and vacuum and all means of escape with the possible exception of crawling out through the kitchen window above the sink into the shrubbery which I momentarily considered and then reminded myself that I’m afraid of the great outdoors WITH shoes on and no horrifying bloody injuries that might attract coyotes. Thanks Jo for rushing to my aid with flip-flops – you totally saved me from certain death by coyote. And let this be a lesson to you, wear shoes in the kitchen or trade out all your dishes for plastic or styrofoam a la McDonald’s in the 80s. Might not be all “green” but you’ll exit the kitchen with all your tootsies in tact and without being mauled by coyotes.
After I saved my foot and cleaned up all the glass and cried a little over the gash it left in my new wood flooring, my bread maker turned on me. Instead of the delicious honey oat bread I was expecting it produced what can only be described as “A very hot brick.” It went straight into the trash and I was sad.
So for those of us keeping score:
- Tailgate Cop: 1, April: 0
- Glass Bowl: 2, April: 0, Wood Floor: 0
- Bread maker: 1, April: 0
- Coyotes: 0, Joanne: 1
I have higher hopes for this coming weekend. They include pie.