The man is a grill guru, a smoker swami, and an oven oracle. Really, he’s good.
He also loves to experiment. He gets ideas in his head for various things he’d like to try out, then he researches his ideas before planning to execute them. This is the man who, before I met him, created his own TurDucKin (turkey, duck, chicken for those of you unfamiliar with this bizarre culinary concept). He tells me it was way more work than it was worth. I could have saved him the time, had I known him.
One of his recent successes was cilantro-lime rice, similar to the rice that’s served at Chipolte. With this recipe, you actually use a lot more water than usual and end up draining the rice at the end. Who knew that would work? It did, though, and it was wonderful.
His new project is cornbread stuffing for Thanksgiving. He’s made this recipe for the past two years, and while the flavor is excellent, the texture is problematic. The first year it was sort of blobby. Delicious, but weird on the tongue. Last year he cooked it in a shallower dish, and it turned out more like a casserole. Again, delicious, but not quite right. He’s still at it, puttering away in the kitchen looking for the solution. He will perfect this recipe, it’s just a matter of time.
I dare not go into the kitchen, it might interrupt his flow. There’s a grocery store roast-chicken waiting in the fridge to join this test stuffing (doing both in one day would require an effort similar to Thanksgiving, and we’re not ready for that quite yet). The house is starting to smell good, and I’m starting to get hungry. Cross your fingers that this experiment works out. It would be great to have the “perfect” stuffing on Thanksgiving.