Spiedies!

I was sent this article originally posed here. Its awesome and will give you everything you need to know about this classic upstate NY food that is starting to get to the rest of the world. I like to make my own marinade but if you can grab some off the shelf, they are all pretty good. Enjoy!

Chicken Spiedies on the grill

Spiedie Sandwich (SPEE-dee) – If you find folks who know of spiedies, they are most likely originally from Binghamton in Broome County, New York, or they know someone who is.  Broome County is in New York’s Southern Tier, southeast of the Finger Lakes and just north of Pennsylvania.

People who live in the area eat them at restaurants, from street vendors, buy from supermarkets, and even make their own at backyard cookouts.  Spiedies have been completely integrated into the food culture of the region, and natives who have moved away from the area have been known to have commercial spiedie sauce shipped, by the case, to their new homes.

If you don’t want to make your own sauce you can also buy Lupo’s Original Endicott Style Spiedie Marinade Sauce or Salamida Original State Fair Spiedie Sauce and Marinade from Amazon Affiliate Links.

History of Spiedies, Spiedie Sandwich:

The name comes from the Italian spiedo meaning kitchen cooking spit.  Originally made from lamb, they are now made with virtually any meat.  It is chunks of lamb, pork, chicken, beef, or venison that has been marinated for days in a tart sauce and then grilled on a metal skewer, usually over charcoal or gas.  The traditional way of serving is between sliced Italian bread with extra sauce poured on top.  The Spiedie, skewer and all, is then inserted in sliced Italian bread.  The bread is used as a sort of mitt, wrapping around the meat.  Pull out the skew and you then have a wonderful and delicious hot sandwich.

An annual three-day community gathering is held featuring hot air balloons, live music, and hundreds of varieties of spiedies cooked and sold by countless vendors.  The weekend of entertainment and fun always concludes with the Spiedie Cook-Off on Sunday.

They originated with Binghamtons Italian immigrant population in the 1920s.  Augustine Iacovelli from Endicott, New York is believed to have popularized the Spiedie by introducing them in his restaurant, called Augies, in 1939.  The original sauce, which he called Zuzu, was wine vinegar, water, lemon juice, garlic and mint. His spiedies caught on so well among the local railroad workers and shoemakers that for years every little corner grocery had a spiedie stand on the street in front of it.

Spiedie Sandwich Recipe (Author: What’s Cooking America)
Ingredients

  • 2 pounds meat (chicken, lamb, pork or beef), cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes*
  • 1 cup olive oil, extra-virgin
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice, freshly-squeezed
  • 3/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (granulated
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons thyme, dried
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons basil, dried
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons oregano, dried
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper, coarsely-ground
  • 1 loaf French bread or Italian bread, thickly sliced
  • Metal Skewers

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, combine olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, and sugar. Add garlic, bay leaf, red pepper, thyme, basil, oregano, salt and pepper; stir until well blended.
  2. Place prepared meat in a large re-sealable plastic bag set into a shallow dish. Pour marinade mixture over meat and close bag. Marinate in the refrigerator for a least 24 hours and up to 3 days; turn bag occasionally to distribute marinade. Remove meat from refrigerator and let stand in marinade at room temperature for 2 hour; drain, reserving marinade.
  3. Preheat barbecue grill.
  4. Thread 4 to 5 cubes of meat onto each metal skewer. Place onto the prepared hot grill and cook approximately 8 to 10 minutes or until done to your preference, basting with reserved marinade. Remove from grill and serve immediately.
  5. To serve, fold the bread over the contents of the skewer and pull the skewer out, leaving the meat sandwiched within the bread.
  6. Makes 6 servings.

Recipe Notes

* Use boneless and skinless chicken breasts, pork tenderloin, top round steak, or leg of lamb.

If you don’t want to make your own sauce you can also buy Lupo’s Original Endicott Style Spiedie Marinade Sauce or Salamida Original State Fair Spiedie Sauce and Marinade from Amazon Affiliate Links.

Tennis Anyone?

Umbrellas and Palm Trees are everywhere!

I love tennis. The look of the courts, the smell of a fresh can of tennis balls, the squeak of shoes on the court. I love the somewhat snooty fans of the sport, especially the ones who go to the tournaments. I love the stadiums that the big tournaments are played in, they are super fancy and have great restaurants. Its all very country club.

For years I attended the US Open Tennis Tournament in Flushing Meadows. Its big time and probably the biggest of all the major tournaments. Its hard to get to the east coast for some tennis so now I try an attend the biggest west coast event and was lucky to catch a a couple matches this week at the BNP Paribas Open In Indian Wells, CA.

The BNP Paribas Open is the largest two-week combined event outside of the four Grand Slams and the most-attended WTA Premier Mandatory and ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tennis tournament in the world. The grounds are amazing with 100’s if not 1000’s of palm trees. Courts are pristine, like they were built yesterday and no matter where you look, the grounds are perfectly clean.

$40 gets you in for a session or 2

I paid $40 for a night pass, face value from a guy selling tickets in the parking lot. Nose bleed seats in the main stadium but I didn’t care as it was sold out. The one and only Rodger Federer VS fellow Swiss player Stan Wawrinka.   Rodger took it in 2 sets but Stan gave a good show as he tried to hold on.

If you like tennis or just want to go have some fun, grab a cheap seat at a pro tournament one day. It’s a great way to spend a few hours out of the ordinary and into a small world of a sport that is played worldwide.

My love/hate relationship with Netflix

Let me start by saying I love Netflix. The service is great, the programming is great, the interface is great, it always works, never buffers and is really reliable. The customer service on the other hand suck ass in a big way. For a giant tech company they really need to get a handle on it. Continue reading for what happened and my rant.

Netflix New

Today,  I received this message from Netflix stating there was a new sign-in on my account from a computer in Central Java  Indonesia and if I didn’t recognize it to change my password. Well I’ll tell you right now I don’t know anyone there and I’m not there watching Netflix so pretty sure its not good.

Now, I am someone that reads email as it comes in and I immediately went to log in to secure my account but to no avail I was locked out and got this message next.
Netflix Email

This one is warning me that my email has been changed and that I’ll need to login with the new email address now. Again, I haven’t been able to log in so is this the work of some tricky Netflix robber looking to get my $7.99 a month subscription?

On both messages, the email creators at Netflix are super willing to help me secure my account and they also indicate they are my friends.  Follow along as I show you how they are the dumbest billion dollar company I have had the pleasure to have called.

Now, you may say something like, why would you call? Just create a new account and move on… well aside from the 5 years of history and knowing where I and the rest of the family is in the binge watching , its my freaking account with my information and I want it secured!

So I start the brain damage of calling in and after a 5 min hold I get a nice gal in another country. She speaks pretty good English so I give it a go. I explain the situation figuring they would fix me up and I would be good but first, they want to verify its my account. No big deal, they ask for last 8 numbers of the credit card I have been using and I give them the card # and state its the same card I have had on file for 3 years. “Sorry sir, I don’t have a record of that card” she says. I am perplexed as I am looking at credit card statement online showing pages of Netflix charges.

After about 15 min of this back and fourth on how they don’t have this card on file, I ask if there is another way they can verify its my account. “No Sir, the credit card is the only way I can change your email back” she says. “I can cancel your account and you can get a new one”, she continues.

Seems that the folks at Netflix know my account was hacked, they have records of the inappropriate access, the recent change of email address, my call in moments later and everything BUT the credit card on file and THAT’S what they need to verify but not to cancel the account. Seems crazy to me that they would not just fix the account. Add to it that my friendly agent #1046089, said I would be getting an email of my cancelation. When I asked if they would be emailed to the old email address on file or the the hackers email, her response was “The hacker will get them”. Beautiful!

All and all, it’s just silly. I created a free trial and will be binge watching again in no time.

 

 

 

 

Matrix Screen Saver

If you were around in the 90s you probably watched The Matrix and maybe even some sequel Matrix movies. If you recall there was this cool falling green characters that represented the virtual space that was The Matrix.

Come to find out those characters were just sushi recipes!  This snippet from Christopher Hooton (Read his post here) states:

The falling green characters at the beginning of all of the Matrix films have become perhaps the most recognizable visual from the film, signifying how everything in the franchise’s universe is a vast fabrication.

So what constitutes the code? An incredibly complex equation? Chopped up passages of Heidegger? Nope, it’s just a load of recipes for sushi.

The Matrix production designer Simon Whiteley told CNet of the apparently indecipherable collection of Japanese hiragana, katakana, and kanji characters: “I like to tell everybody that The Matrix’s code is made out of Japanese sushi recipes.

“Without that code, there is no Matrix.”

Needless to say, its cool whatever its made of. So cool in fact I made it my screen saver! Download your own copy of Red Pill Screen saver for MAC here or look for others here

 

Palm Springs Air Museum

The Palm Prings Air Museum is a really cool place to check out vinatage aircraft and memoribilia. They host private events, weddings and other fun things if you are in the market for an event location.

Check out their web site: https://palmspringsairmuseum.org/ 

The Palm Springs Air Museum is a living history museum dedicated to educating the public about the role Air Power played in preserving American liberties and way of life. The Museum preserves, exhibits, and flies aircraft from World War Two, Korea, and the Vietnam Wars. Most of the aircraft are in flyable condition.

Many of our docents are veterans and are willing to share their experiences and sacrifices for the education of future generations. In addition to flyable and static aircraft, the Museum uses permanent and temporary exhibits, related artifacts, artwork, and library sources to perpetuate American History. Children 5 and under and all active military with ID (and their immediate families) receive free admission. Non Profit Tax ID # 33-0615350.

Beatles Day!

Join me as I play some drums and sing some songs at the annual Beatles Day at The Sawdust Festival in Laguna Beach, CA. The Sawdust Festival is an annual summer art and craft festival that has works from local artists as well and music every day on 3 stages. Good food, beer and wine bring people from all over the world to join in on the events. Beatles Day happens 1 time each year and highlights the talent of Southern California’s best Beatles bands.

Playing at Cooks Corner today!

Today I’ll be playing some First Generation Classic Rock and more and the coolest place around. Great food, drinks and people. Join us! 12- 5 on the patio with The Really Classic Band. Eddie Mariscal in guitar, Selly on bass and yours truly on the drums.