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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Are You Ready For Some BBQ?

With Labor Day weekend coming up it reminds me of lazy days and lots of good BBQ!   Being a Texan born and bred I am used to a delicious, thick, red BBQ sauce slathered over some mouth watering smoked brisket or better yet, some delicious tender meaty beef ribs!  But, having married someone from North Carolina I have to embrace BBQ which is very different  from what I am accustomed to.  I remember my first taste of BBQ in North Carolina, I was told it would be very different from what I was used to and boy were they right!  I was expecting some sort of cut of beef and instead got a plate of pulled pork.  After my shock, I asked about the sauce and a bottle of very liquidy slighty reddish sauce was handed to me;  with a little hesitation I poured some over my pork and was surprised to taste vinegar.  I’ve since acquired somewhat of a taste for NC BBQ and being a loving wife have tried to make the sauce myself for my transplanted husband!  I’ve tried several different recipes and am waiting for a shipment of a bottle of his favorite sauce from a restaurant back home that I can taste and hopefully be able to somewhat duplicate.

Here is a recipe I tried last….

North Carolina BBQ Sauce
1  C. White Vinegar
1  C. Apple Cider Vinegar
4  Tbsp. Brown Sugar
1  Tbsp. Cayenne Pepper (or to taste)
1  Tbsp. Tabasco Sauce (or to taste)
1  tsp.  Salt
1  tsp.  Black Pepper

Combine all well and store in a jar in refrigerator.  Will keep for 2 months.

While we are on the topic of BBQ, I’ll include a recipe for a South Carolina BBQ Sauce that I also tried.  SC uses a mustard base sauce and for someone from Texas it is very different indeed!  But, I have to say it’s not too bad!  My husband had some and although it is very different from his NC vinegar sauce said it’s pretty good.

South Carolina Mustard BBQ Sauce
1  C.   Prepared Yellow Mustard
½  C.  Balsamic Vinegar
1/3 C. Packed Brown Sugar
2  Tbsp.  Butter
1  Tbsp.  Worchestshire Sauce
1  Tbsp.  Lemon Juice
1  tsp.  Cayenne Pepper (or to taste)

Mix all in a medium saucepan and simmer over low heat about 30 mins.  Stir occasionally.  Store in a jar and refrigerate.

Ok…Let the BBQ’s begin!  Which type of BBQ do you like prefer?  Are you willing to try something different?  I’d love to hear!   I hope you all have a very happy and safe Labor Day Weekend!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Battle of the Gaming Devices

The Nintendo Wii released in late 2006 rapidly took the country by storm with its motion based player movements. Young and old alike were able to share the fun. Nintendo did not disappoint us by making sure we had great games like Super Mario and many other fun titles to enjoy.

The Wii negatives would be more lackluster games that the advanced gamers are looking to play as well as its limitations for other home entertainment options such as Blue Ray DVD play and internet browsing with flash. Challenging online play is also a negative.

The Xbox 360 gaming unit now offers a motion bar known as Microsoft Kinect that provides game play using your body without holding onto anything. Despite the new addition, the gaming system just does not have the same appeal as the Playstation 3 which provides more of a total entertainment experience.

Just take a drive to your local Walmart and see which consoles are in the locked glass case and which have been sold out. Plenty of Xbox 360 units are ready for purchase most likely and no Playstation 3 machines to be found. The PS3 provides more family entertainment with the inclusion of a Blue Ray DVD player which also upscales the quality of regular DVD movies. Browsing the internet is a breeze as well as downloading movies and TV shows.

This post was not intended to provide a serious gamer review of machines but instead provide information to those who are looking for some family entertainment and fun on a budget. The Wii will provide hours of fun but the Playstation 3 will provide years of total family entertainment. The PS3 has much to offer whether you are a serious gamer or not. I would skip the Xbox 360.