We had friends, Laurie and David, and her sister and brother-in-law over for dinner to make up for their missing out on the prime rib Christmas dinner. We had the same basic meal of smoked rib roast, twice baked potato, homemade rolls, Caesar salad, and cake for dessert – provided by them.
But before we ate and since there were five hot sauce eaters in the house, we did a little taste test – a favorite thing to do around here. Since I’d gone to the Pepper Palace during our Gatlinburg trip and bought Fire Ant Juice to go with the three I had on hand, I couldn’t let the tasting opportunity pass by. For this tasting, I used Fire Ant Juice. Sriracha, Franks, regular Tabasco, and asked each participant to rate them best to worst. We had unidentified cups of each sauce and pieces of homemade bread and oyster crackers for dipping. This is a post-test shot.
The results were:
1. Sriracha - 9
2. Tabasco, Fire Ant Juice – tied at 13
3. Frank’s - 15
Sriracha was the clear favorite being selected 1 or 2 by everyone, but as David pointed out, the best sauce still depends on what it's being used for. And what does this test prove – absolutely nothing as evidenced by the vast number of, sometimes very different, hot sauces stocking the store shelves.
For the rib roast, I once again used the reverse sear method in my smoker as described in my Christmas meal post. A major storm system moved through the area while I was cooking and we needed the rain, but not an inch plus in a couple of hours. I didn't spend much time hanging around the smoker and from what I saw on TV the next day, it looks like we dodged a bullet.
mashed potato recipe for the stuffing. The Caesar salad was just romaine lettuce, Newman’s Dressing, and homemade croutons. We also decided to add a first course of French onion soup, which we had in the freezer. I'll blog about it next time I make it, but I used a recipe from Cook's Illustrated that caramelizes the onions in the oven for 3 hours and makes an outstanding soup. I didn't have any gruyere or other swiss cheese, so I used a combo of mozzerella, for stringy, and romano, for flavor - it worked very well. Forgot the photo.
The three shots of my plate all came out blurry and I failed to get any of the other dishes, so please pop on over to Big Daddy Dave's for shots of everything.
It turned out very well except the beef base I used resulted in an au jus that was so salty it almost ruined the meat - it will be made with consumme from now on. Can you believe I would only eat beef well done until I was 16 years old - age does bring a little wisdom.
I didn’t get a shot of it either, but Laurie’s cake was outstanding.
A final muffuletta comment. I went back to our trip to Nola and compared my muffuletta to the one from Central Grocery and they both looked similar and good until I saw the one made by Rawtalent, it's awesome.
Have a great day and thanks for stopping by.