Dave Duncan

"Eat Well, Stay Fit, Die Anyway"

Archive for the 'Recipes' Category

Dangerous Dan’s VIII; Celebrating Eight Years of Gluttony

Dear friends (and others),

Some of you are stalwarts at this annual event, while others are hearing about it for the first time.  Rest assured, you are all being cordially invited because you are human and eating food is a requirement for life, and if you read this blog you might just be disgusting enough to get a kick out of this food in particular.

Of course, I’m referring to the annual pilgrimage to Dangerous Dan’s Diner on Queen Street East (at Broadview) where we will try our best to take down Coronary Combos in the battle to show those uppity vegans who’s boss.

The seventh annual trip will take place on Sunday, November 20 at 4:00pm.  In keeping with tradition, this year’s trip will be on the same day as the Toronto Santa Claus Parade, so keep that in mind for your commute to the holy shrine of beefdom.  In case you’re wondering why, we’re holding it in the afternoon to avoid both the lunch and dinner rushes, and so that everyone taking part really only has to have one meal that day.

For the uninitiated, these burgers are ridiculously huge, but not altogether untasty.  To get an idea of what you might be in for, check out 2009’s public invite and the photos that followed, after we rode the burger bus.  Then, tell me that you wouldn’t love a photo like that for your Facebook or Twitter profile pic.

As always, spectators, friends and significant others are more than welcome (this event is open to all genders), but we encourage anyone not taking part to be supportive rather than judgmental.  After all, consuming these combos is a feat of arms, as it were.

Feel free to forward this along to anyone who might want to take part, watch or even document this event for future posterity.  If you know anyone with first aid skills, or who is particularly handy with a defibrillator, they would be welcome too.

Mark the event in your calendar, share it with your friends, make sure your camera (and stomach pump) are charged and ready to go and for goodness sake, start training now.  I hope to see you all in the land of beef in a few short days.

If you’re coming, just leave a breif comment here to let me know.  The folks at the diner have asked we provide numbers so they can have enough cows killed ahead of time.

Thanks, and see you there!

PS: I have every intention of bringing my son to witness this annual feat, and also to compare how big he is compared to the burger.

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Ol’ Timey Cures for What Ails Ya

I’ve still got some aches and pains in my old bones and I’m still a bit dizzy, but I’m in much better shape than most people I’ve talked to who have had this same cold and I owe it all to an old timey cure that has been in a hit in my family since the old timey times where just ‘times’.

One of the worst parts about a severe cold like this is the chest congestion that locks up your breathing and all that mucus that just sits there waiting until you can build up strong enough coughs to… well, you know.  As you lie back hearing your breath gurgle, you daydream of building a fire in your lungs to burn it all out so you can breathe again.  Well my friends, here’s the fire you desire; it’s called a Mustard Plaster.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • One tablespoon of dry mustard
  • Three tablespoons of flour
  • About a cup of boiling water
  • Either a paper bag or a cotton rag
  • A thin towel
  • A couple of heavy sweaters

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Mix the mustard and flour in a bowl in a bowl.
  2. Add the boiling water until you have a gooey paste.
  3. Spread the paste on the paper bag or rag until it’s roughly the same surface area as a DVD box.
  4. Wrap the bag or rag in a towel and lay it flat on your bare chest, centered over your sternum (right over your lungs).
  5. It might take a few minutes before you start feeling the heat, but it’ll come.  Be patient.  Once it does, leave the plaster on for 20-30 minutes AFTER it gets hot.
  6. As soon as you take the plaster off, it’s VERY important you keep your chest bundled up and warm, so put on a couple of heavy sweaters and curl up under a blanket.

Note that a mustard plaster doesn’t work with a dry, hacking cough situation as it effectively loosens chest congestion and helps detach the mucus that’s clogging up your lungs.   Depending on the severity of your chest cold, you might have to repeat it once a day for a few days until you burn all the evil out of your system.

If you’re suffering with this particularly nasty seasonal cold, I wish you Godspeed and good luck in getting better, and if you haven’t got it yet, count yourself lucky.

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Southwest in a Snap

Danielle and I get a great cooking magazine from my parents (part of our Christmas present each year) called “Taste of Home; Simple and Delicious” that has really delicious and easy-to-make recipes.  May’s issue included a shrimp and avocado salad that has been a big hit a couple of times at our place, and since people are asking for the recipe, I’m too lazy to email it AND I’m sure people will ask for it again, I’m just going to share it here.

Shrimp and Avocado Salad

Prep/Total Time: 25 mins
Yield: 4 servings

1lb uncooked large shrimp (peeled and deveined)
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. olive oil
5 cups hearts of romaine salad mix
1 cup fresh or frozen corn
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1/2 cup chopped sweet red pepper
1 medium ripe avocado, peeled and thinly sliced

Cilantro Vinaigrette:
[this tastes basically the same as any vinaigrette dressing, so you can just used bottled to save time and effort]
7 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
1/4 cup lime juice
1-1/2 tsp. sugar
1 small garlic clove minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper

In a large skillet, cook the shrimp, garlic, chili powder, salt and cumin in oil over medium heat for 3/4 minutes or until shrimp turn pink; set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the romaine, corn, peas and red pepper; divide among four serving plates. Top each with shrimp and avocado.  In a small bowl, whisk the vinaigrette ingredients and drizzle over salad.

This is basically the perfect non-BBQ patio meal, and it goes great with any summer drink.  It’s really easy to scale up or down depending on the size of the group you’re feeding and it’s a feast for the senses.  Now, go forth and share.

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The Idiot-Proof Step-by-Step Guide to Baking Bread

There was a time when I thought baking bread was probably the hardest thing in the world.  It seemed like the kind of thing professional bakers or pioneering homesteaders could do, but not a guy like me.  Then, a few years ago, I asked my grandmother to show me how to bake bread at home, and I found out just how easy it is.

So, from my grandmother to you, what follows below is an idiot-proof illustrated guide to baking your own bread or rolls in the comfort of your own home.  The only really specialized tools you’ll need are bread pans, but you don’t need those if you want to make delicious dinner rolls instead, just use muffin tins.

I won’t assume any culinary knowledge whatsoever, so don’t be intimidated at all by this process, and if you DO have some skill in the kitchen, just enjoy the read and the photos, and take from it what you will.  The entire recipe is after the jump, and if you want to see a larger version of any photo, just click on it.

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