Thursday, May 23, 2013

Inferno - Fire Up the Grill

May has been a busy month. I feel like I’ve always been on the go, whether it be to a soccer game, birthday party or church event. But I’m looking on the bright side; it all involves having fun with my family and the weather has finally turned. Summer is just around the corner!

In a decidedly non-outdoor activity, I finished Inferno, Dan Brown’s latest Robert Langdon Novel. It’s a good book and I enjoyed it. But I think I set my expectations too high. I loved The DaVinci Code and Angels and Demons. What I loved most about those books was the details of little known history and the insinuation that the worlds great leaders and artists have been protecting a precious secret, generation after generation. And I love that the premise could actually be true (or maybe it isn’t – but that’s part of the fun!).

While Inferno is based on Dante’s work of the same name, the plot and the “secret” are modern. I preferred the ancient of the previous books. This book is more of a modern day thriller. While Brown’s previous works take place in the present day, the plot is very much rooted in the past. With Inferno, not so much and I was a bit disappointed. However, if I had considered this a standalone book and not set myself up for a DaVinci Code Part II I would have been much happier. And it gets you thinking about the future of the human race (I’ll say no more so I don’t ruin it for you!) Think of it more as Nelson DeMille novel (BTW – I love DeMille.)

On a bloggy note: it has occurred to me that I don’t really add pictures to my posts. Would you like me to? Or do you not care either way?

I would be remise if I didn’t leave you with at least one recipe. Grilling season if finally here! Here’s a three step plan for an easy peasy (lemon squeezy, to quote Jake) week night dinner on the grill for four:

1.       Take 1 lb shelled and de-veined shrimp and toss it in ¼ cup soy says and 2 TBS honey. Thread onto kabob skewers. Add some veggies if you’re feeling fancy but don’t sweat it if you’re not – this is meant to be easy and quick.

2.       Throw some ears of corn on the grill and cook for 15 mins. 5 minutes before the corn is done but the shrimp on the grill and cook until pink.

3.       Heat up the below recipe for baked beans. You will have made a huge pot earlier in the week so that you can have super yummy leftovers throughout the week (they taste even better the next day). Or you can cook the them on the same day. Just start them an hour before the corn and shrimp. I recommend doubling the recipe.

Maple Baked Beans

3 15-oz cans baked beans (I use Bush’s Onion flavor – saves me chopping an onion to add)
1 TBS minced garlic
¾ cup maple syrup
2 TBS tomato paste
1 TBS Worcestershire Sauce
1 TBS chili powder

Mix all of the ingredients together in a large pot (use a cast iron dutch oven and you can cook it on the grill!) Cook for about 45 minutes, until liquids reduce.

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