Wednesday, September 23, 2015


I'm planning my 50th birthday party. I've always wanted to do a vodka and caviar party for the big 5-0, but am going even better with a Russian-themed cocktail party. 

My dad's dad (paternal grandfather) was actually Ukranian, but I'll be substituting some of the Russian items with foods I grew up with; for example, I think that my great-aunt Pearl's cydik, which I usually only make for Easter, would be a really tasty base for caviar and go well with vodka. She married my paternal grandfather's younger brother. She lived with my grandfather's parents after she married my uncle and learned how to cook Ukrainian food. She taught me how to make Ukrainian cydik and paska, and Polish pierogies. 

Here's the menu:

Here's the cookbook that inspired my party food. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


We had Hambone and Spotted Dick aka Dickie butchered two weeks ago about. Ended up with 330 total pounds of various pork products: bellies, jowls, ribs, chops, tenderloins, Boston butts, picnic shoulders, and hams.

So far, I've started one belly in brine for bacon along with the jowl. Made fresh Italian sausage, bratwurst, and breakfast sausage. Made smoked kielbasa this past weekend. 
Pork: it's what's for breakfast, lunch, AND dinner at our place.