I don’t know how this saying came about, but your 30’s are called the “dirty 30’s.” I have been in my thirty’s for a few years and there is nothing dirty about them. I will say that most people have grown up and will continue to grow up while in their 30, becoming more responsible with each passing year.
The last of the 20-somethings, Nancy, had her birthday on Sunday so we celebrated with some friends and family at the house. I was in charge of cooking and Nancy wanted ribs, mac and cheese, and grilled vegetables for the evening. For an appetizer I cooked a kick ass brie dish that was completely gone in no time. The mac and cheese receipt was taken from a grilling cookbook. For the ribs I was able to use my new rib rack that Matt got me for Christmas and rib cook book that went along with it. The three racks I purchased fit nicely in the rack and I got to cooking around 4pm.
I was busy in the kitchen prepping food when our guests started arriving about 5:30. I was so busy getting things ready I completely lost track of the time and didn’t start cooking the ribs till almost 7:30. We planned on eating around 8 so I blew that time out of water real quick. In the end there where two 45 minute cooking seasons before the ribs were finished.
To prepare the ribs I used a maple and brown sugar rub and separate maple glaze for the ribs and I must say they were fantastic! I was a little worried about the time it would take to cook everything and the ribs not coming out good. In the end the cook time took longer than I estimated but the ribs where cooked perfectly and everyone loved them. It was a good feeling that for 10 minutes the house was quit. All evening the the house was filled with conversation and commotion, you could hear a pin drop while everyone ate the ribs. We ate two racks for diner and later in the evening we finished off the last rack as a late night snack. The only thing I screwed up was the timing, but that didn’t matter when the food was finally served.
I started the ribs off for 45 minutes of indirect heat on the grill, to this I added a handful of smoking chips to each pile of coil. After the initial 45 minutes it was time to add more coals and start the vegetables cooking. I got a second pile of coal going and put the ribs right over the head, flanked on each side by vegetable skewers. I also used this time to apply a generous amount of glaze to the ribs. Half way through the basting process while talking to Nancy I see the door open and someone yelling “there is a fire in the kitchen” with the fire alarm going off in the back ground. I couldn’t believe it and being right in the middle of basting the ribs I couldn’t do much about it. I asked Nancy to investigate for me and she confirmed that yes there was a fire in the oven. The mac & cheese was suppose to brown under the broiler and I put the food to close to the burner so the crust caught on fire. I never panicked, I just calmly put the lid down on the grill and walked in side.
Everyone was gather in the kitchen not sure what to do. Tracy was desperate to put the fire out, scurrying around looking for a fire extinguisher I suspect. First job was to stop that damn fire alarm, so I barked at Bobby to pull it off the ceiling and take it outside, now I could hear myself think. I grabbed an oven mitt and pulled out the casserole dish from the oven, indeed it was on engulfed in fire. Then as the calm person I am I blew out the fire, crisis over. The mac & cheese was a little worse for ware but everyone was safe and the house was still standing with no damage. I looked at Nancy and asked if that was enough excitement for her birthday. The casserole didn’t look pretty, but I scrapped off the burnt crush, reapplied a fresh layer and put it back in the broiler much lower from the heat source. After the only emergency of the night was over I went back outside to tend the ribs while everyone else went back to talking, smoking and drinking.
Another 45 minutes passed and it was time to pull the ribs off the grill. At this point it was well past 9pm and I was nervous. I had never cooked ribs before and I was not sure how they would turn out. Would they be cooked enough, burned, taste like crap? I didn’t know. When I opened the grill lid to look a quick scan revealed the vegetables looked perfect and ribs didn’t look burn, but I was only looking at the underside so not a good judge. As I brought the three slabs into the kitchen everyone has assembled to watch, which is typical when someone in the family grills. I laid them on the cutting board and flipped them over…..they looked amazing! The next test, doneness. When I cut into the first one it was perfectly cooked with just a bit of juice.
After eating it was time for a nap, everyone was so full the food coma was quickly setting in. To jolt use back to life the smokers all had a cigarette in the cold, another round of shots and time for a little dancing. For Christmas Nancy got Dance Party 2 which we played for almost 2 hours. Of course the the fellas didn’t fell much like dancing but after I got up there and showed them how it was done everyone loosened up. We traded off between everyone and had a grate time shacking our booties. I know Nancy took a few videos and I don’t even want to see what I look like, I probably look like a fool but it certainly was fun.
Another cigarette outside which brought us just past midnight and officially Nancy’s birthday. A quick happy birthday and some awesome cookies Matt made and it was back in side. This late in the evening we lost Nicole and Jeff but the rest of use stuck it out for a round of poker. It is becoming something of a tradition that when the family gets together for a party we get at least one round of poker in. The stakes are only $5 but it is a ton of fun talking shit. We killed the last rack of ribs while playing, had to satisfy the midnight munchies and the ribs certainly hit the spot on that.
The next morning the ladies where not feeling well. Both Tracy and Nancy had a lot to drink, I think it was the jello shots that put them over the edge. Thankfully Bobby was feeling good and made some kick ass omelets for everyone using the grilled vegetables and left over cheese from the night before. The rest of the day Nancy and I didn’t do crap. It was a lazy day spent watching tv and getting a few things done around the house. I personally couldn’t think of a better way to spend a Sunday