Gosh, has it really been a week since we’ve communicated.. wow. Where does that time go?
Anyway some will be relieved to know that this will be (mostly) food related, with a little bit of sports thrown in.
First, kind of a sad note, there was an article in Baynet (and probably elsewhere) that an employee of the CD Café (on the Solomons) has been arrested for siphoning off funds for years for personal benefit. Said something like over $200K in all. Was a “trusted” employee, who had risen to a position of being a money manager. What a shame. One wonders what drives an employee to take advantage and funds from somebody for years with apparently no remorse, guilt, nor compassion. We’ll probably never know, and I doubt that the restaurant will be able to recoup any of the funds. Sad.
On to more fun stuff, kind of a blending of sports and food. We’ll start with the big sporting event that’s going on right now, The Master’s Golf Tournament. (we’ll insert a small rant later). I have been fortunate enough to be able to be there twice, and indeed when Patrick Reed says it is the “heaven of Golf” he’s not far off. Sounds stupid but it is kind of a magic place almost sacred to anybody who attempts to play or enjoy the game. A unique blend of beauty and peacefulness that is a privledge to experience. That being said, I would not go back again (Thank you Tom Wolfe) and would prefer to let the memories transport me. Here’s living proof!
That was my first experience in 2008, and the second time in 2012 I got to see a couple of icons of the game
Who is still with us, and sadly The King who is not
A final word on the setting, it is a very strenuous course to walk. Very many hills, which are not really visible on TV. I hope you get to go sometime, don’t miss an opportunity.
A tradition like no other not only applies to the tournament but there are also some traditions about the concessions. One of the iconic items is the Pimento Sandwich sold there. Of course the South’s Pimento (some say Pimiento) Cheese Sandwich is kind of like our Stuffed Ham. Everybody has a favorite recipe. Anyway, there is quite a history with the “legendary”
Sandwich sold at the concession stands (for a paltry $1.50, by the way).
A quick history (borrowed from the link down below):
“For forty-five years, a caterer named Nick Rangos from nearby Aiken, South Carolina, made the Masters’ famous pimento cheese. Then in 1998, the club switched contracts and began using Wife Saver, the local Augusta restaurant chain that had been responsible for making the tournament’s fried chicken sandwiches—which are back on the concessions menu.
Back in ’98, led by franchise owner Ted Godfrey, the folks at Wife Saver set out to recreate Rangos’ pimento cheese. Godfrey and team presented several batches to Augusta National, but couldn’t get it quite right—something was missing. Luckily, a woman who worked for the tournament had frozen a batch of the original, and after comparing it to his version, Godfrey finally hit on a formula that seemed right. For the next fifteen years he served this recipe at the course during Masters Week. Then in 2013, the tournament changed vendors again. This time, people noticed. ESPN even investigated”
I of course tried the version before the 2013 change. People don’t like the new ones, but:
“You can visit the North Augusta, Fury’s Ferry, North Leg, or Washington Road Wife Saver locations (only those four; the spread isn’t sold at the other two) and pick up a container of the original stuff—or as close to it as you can now find. Does it taste as good as it did when you were sitting in the shade of a pine tree on Augusta National’s stunningly beautiful course? That’s for you to decide”
While on the subject, I found a nice (traditional) recipe in Garden and Gun (do you subscribe?) that has worked well for me. Easy and good. I have published it before, but will included it again:
2 Cups Sharp
Cheddar, grated (8 oz)
½ Cup Duke’s Mayonnaise
½ Cup Pimiento Peppers, drained and chopped (7 oz. jar)
¼ Cup Green Onion chopped (using both the green and the white parts)
1 tsp. black pepper
½ tsp. salt
Dash of Tabasco
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl, and stir with a rubber spatula. Serve immediately with crackers, or cover, refrigerate, and let flavors marinate.
Glass Onion Restaurant
Pg 24, Garden and Gun
Okay, and lastly a tradition (like no other) of my own for the Master’s. Since it always occurs around easter, there are usually (at least in our digs) a few Jelly Beans kicking around, and many years ago I hit on what became my traditional snack by which to watch the final round with, often responsible for bringing home my favorite player (like Phil). here's the recipe:
Combine ingredients in roughly equal parts, maybe leaning toward more of the peanuts. Employ personal taste.
Put finished dish in a serving bowl
Select beverage of choice
Settle back and enjoy the tournament
Mr. Woods after round two in the background, wishing he had my snack (or beverage!)
Chef's Notes: The original recipe used “regular” Jelly Beans (not spiced) which could not be located this year, and it also started out with Planter’s Cocktail Peanuts, from the blue can with Mr. Peanut peering at you, but hey. Still good. and yes, in either case they must be Brach's Jelly beans/eggs(?), nothing else will do, and they MUST have full color, no pastels, and a iron clad requirement is to include black (licorice) ones.
I will try to include the link to the whole article about the sandwiches from Garden and Gun’s Facebook page, but since it involves Facebook, who knows. Good luck
And due to the length of above wisdom, I will not go off on the Media’s infatuation with “Tiger’s Back!” who is currently holding down 43rd place, a mere 18 shots off the pace. But hey, if he shoots an 18 on the back nine, he’s right back in it!
About time to go get my traditional final round snack and later on