Tag Archives: food

Apple Bourbon Glazed Pork Chops

Apple Bourbon Glazed Pork Chops

Ahhh……. it’s that wonderful time of the year, when the leaves begin to turn, there’s a slight nip in the air, not too hot, not to cold, and all of my fantasy football teams are already tanking. My absolute favorite time for grilling, and cooking a little ‘Q. What says fall more than apples? And what do apples pair well with? Pork!

This is a quick, easy little recipe we came up with way back in the spring. We used it for our Easter ham, but I knew then that I wanted to hold on to it until fall. So I’ve been carrying this one around with me in my “pocket” for several months.

*Special Note: If you’re a taste as you go type cook, as I am,  DO NOT  TASTE  the glaze before you boil it and reduce it. It will taste like aweful cough syrup. Once it reduces and the alcohol cooks off, then it’s quite wonderful.

What to expect:

Definite notes of apple from the bourbon, sweetness with hints of cinnamon, and a gentle heat from the cayenne. All playing well with the richness of the pork, and subtle hints of smoke.

Yield: 4 pork chops

Time: 10-15 minutes to make the sauce, 20 minutes for the chops depending on the thickness.

What you will need:

1 cup Jim Beam apple bourbon

1 cup packed brown sugar

2 cinnamon sticks

1 tsp cayenne pepper (1 Tbls is my preference, adjust to YOUR taste and tolerance.)

4 THICK cut pork chops

Salt and pepper to taste

1-2 apple wood chunks

How we did it:

Begin by combining the bourbon, brown sugar, cinnamon sticks, and cayenne pepper in a small pot and bring to a boil while stirring.

Once it comes to a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer until it coats the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

Divide in half.

That’s it. That’s all there is to making this incredible glaze.

Now turn your attention to the pork chops.

Season well on both sides. I like to season the chops before lighting the grill. This allows the salt to break down and the chops to bask in the flavor of the seasoning. You’ll end up with a richer, more, even flavored pork chop this way.

Set grill up for direct cooking.

Oil grates.

Toss in the apple wood chunks.

Place pork chop on the grill and immediately coat the up side with the glaze.


Cook covered for about 6 minutes.

Flip the pork chop over and coat.

Cook another 6 minutes covered.

Check the temperature with an instant read thermometer. We’re shooting for 145°F, it’ll coast up a little as it rest.

Toss out any left over glazed that you used on the raw chops.

Apply a light finishing coat with the other half of the glaze that you set aside and a CLEAN BRUSH no sense getting sick because you didn’t want to dirty a second brush.

Serve and enjoy.

As all ways: Remember what you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.


*All recipes are my own creation and intellectual property.



Posted by on October 12, 2017 in Uncategorized


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Buffalo Bacon BLTs

Buffalo Bacon BLTs

Bacon has been raging across not only the BBQ world but the culinary world for some time. There’s pretty much bacon EVERYTHING. Bacon burgers, bacon donuts, bacon jam, bacon wrapped anything edible, and yes I’ve even had a caramel bacon Sunday (it was quite good by the way). In the other sphere there’s Buffalo everything. Buffalo wings, Buffalo shrimp, Buffalo hamburgers, Buffalo beef jerky….. Well you get the idea. But, what if? Is it possible? Am I crazy? Dare I take two great worlds and join them together? Who am I to play culinary god? Then I realized the Harry Burnete, the chap who came up with the Reese cup must have had the same questions. I’m sure some called him crazy. But ol’ Harry dared to do it. Dared to step outside the box and push the limits. Because of that the world is a slightly better place. So tongs in hand, sidekick at my side, I stepped out. Thus I give to you a union of two amazing worlds…… (enter Space Odyssey 2001 music) BUFFALO BACON!!!!

What to expect: A slight burn, with that wonderful Buffalo tang, mingled with hickory smoke and the deep rich savory flavor that only bacon can bring. The blue cheese dressing will elevate the flavors of the bacon and the buffalo sauce.

Yield:  6 nice size sandwiches.

What you will need:


15 minutes to make the sauce, plus additional time to let it cool.

20-30 minutes total cooking time for the bacon.

  • 2/3 C Tabasco
  • 6 Tbls white vinegar
  • 1 tsp Worcester sauce
  • 1 lb butter
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbls chipotle pepper  (cayenne pepper works well too)
  • 2 lbs bacon
  • Tomatoes
  • Lettuce
  • Blue cheese or ranch dressing
  • 6 Nice hoagie rolls

How we did it.

First make the Buffalo sauce.


Combine the 2/3 cup Tabasco, 6 Tbls white vinegar, and 1 tsp Worcester sauce in a medium sauce pan over medium heat.

Add the 1 pound of butter.

After the butter is melted, stir in the ½ tsp garlic powder and Tbls chili powder.

Set sauce aside and let it cool to room temperature.

Once the sauce is cooled to room temperature, divide in half.

Place bacon in freezer bag or large non reactive bowl.

Stir the sauce very well because it will have separated by this time.

Pour half the sauce over the bacon. DO NOT REFRIGERATE! If you do your butter will solidify and you will end up with a massive chunk of butter and bacon. Assuming you let your sauce come down to room temperature, your bacon will be safe for the 30-40 minutes it takes to light your grill and start cooking.



Set your grill up for INDIRECT cooking.

Add hickory.

Cook bacon covered, in the void between the coals checking after 5 minutes.

Just a note here, if you try to cook your bacon over direct coals you will end up with bacon flambe’. Butter and bacon drippings falling onto hot coals could make for a very interesting cook, tasty no, but definitely interesting.

Once the bacon is done, add what you HAVEN’T ate to a large bowl and toss with the reserve sauce.


All that’s left to do now is build those BLTs. It just doesn’t get much better on a warm summers evening than BLTs with home grown tomatoes (matters around this house) and lettuce. Top it with a little blue cheese dressing and you’ve got yourself some foot stomping good eats.


Remember what you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with!


My wing man and son. The “who” my closing line refers to.




Posted by on August 31, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Grilled Shrimp Po-Boys

Grilled Shrimp Po-Boys

My first love for cooking actually came in the form of cooking Cajun food. I always wanted to do it, but just never got around to actually doing it. Now many years later, I’ve started searching out that passion. The true beauty for me is that I can combine my two favorite loves, Cajun food and grilling/BBQ. So once again were going to head on down to the bayou for a traditional classic with a grilled spin.

We don’t set out here at The Dodd Squad Headquarters to make food healthier, sometimes it just happens. By simply grilling the shrimp instead of battering it and deep frying it we “accidentally” made it a touch healthier. We’ll try to do better the next time. I promise.

What to expect: There’s a lot going on here. First and foremost by grilling the shrimp and not hiding it a batter, you’re going to be able to taste the shrimp, and enjoy that nice little snap when you bite through it. The rub and remoulade is going to give it a nice kick of heat with a little Cajun authenticity. Add to it the the tomatoes, dill pickle chips, and some shredded lettuce and you’ve got yourself a fine sandwich, deep in flavor and texture.

Yield: 4 foot long sandwiches

What you will need:


Time: About 2 hours total.

Cajun rub/seasoning:

  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika powder
  • 1½ teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Remoulade sauce:


  • 1 1/4 cups mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup mustard (Creole mustard if possible)
  • 1 Tbsp sweet paprika
  • 1-2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon dill pickle juice
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce (preferably Tabasco, after all it’s made there)
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced and smashed

For the shrimp

  • 1-1½ pounds 16/20 shrimp, shelled, deveined, and tails off
  • 2 tablespoons Cajun rub for the shrimp on the grill
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

4 12 inch hoagie buns

Shredded lettuce, sliced tomatoes,and dill pickle chips for toppings.

How we did it:

Begin by making the rub, you’ll need it throughout the recipe.

combine all the rub ingredients together and grind in a spice grinder to a powder. If you don’t have a spice grinder don’t let that stop you. Just mix it together, that ought to be good enough.

Make the remoulade, you’re going to want to give the flavors time to “meld.”

Mix the remoulade ingredients together, stir well, cover, refrigerate.

wp-1466541226732.jpeg wp-1466541346677.jpeg

Set grill up for direct grilling.

Season shrimp well with the Cajun rub and place on skewers.


Grill over direct heat until the shrimp is opaque and turning red. About 6-8 minutes in total turning as necessary.


In a small pan mix: ¼ teaspoon salt, ¾ stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, 2 teaspoons Cajun rub, 4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce. Heat while stirring until the butter is melted, remove from heat and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.

Add the grilled shrimp and gently toss/stir to coat.

Assemble the sandwiches using the remoulade as you would mayonnaise.wp-1466540818028.jpeg

All that’s left to do now is surround your self with some friends, crank up the zydeco music, and take a note from old Hank Williams Sr’s book:

Pick guitar fill fruit jar and be gay-o
Son of a gun we’ll have big fun on the bayou

Remember, what you cook, isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.




Posted by on July 3, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Smokey Mac and Cheese

Smokey Mac and Cheese

I would love to tell you that this is a quick and easy recipe. That it’s something you can whip up in about 20 minutes. But I can’t. If you want quick and easy you may want to search for another recipe. If you’re looking for a recipe that will challenge your skills without taxing them to the max, this is for you. If you’re looking for a recipe that showcases your ability as a smoker, then keep reading. If you’re looking a recipe that will give you a mac & cheese that’s smokey, gooey, with rich deep flavors, then continue to scroll.
What to expect:

A very rich creamy mac and cheese with deep hints of smoke. The grilled peppers add yet another layer of flavor while the green onions not only bring texture but their own flavor. The mustard lends slight acidity to break up the heavy flavor and bring it to life.
What you will need:

Special equipment:

9X13 baking dish buttered

45 minutes for roasting and prepping the vegetables.

6 minutes for cooking the macaroni.

20 minutes total for making the béchamel (more about that later).

30 minutes for the final cook.

*Times do not include time to set up grill and get coals to lit and to temperature.

3 red peppers

3 pablano peppers (or green peppers if pablanos are unavailable)

3 bunches of green onions

2 4.5 oz cans of green chilis

2 jalapenos (optional but highly recommended )

1lb of elbow macaroni


½ cup olive oil (divided)

1 ½ lbs of smoked sharp cheddar (shredded) (divided)

*Your own cold smoked cheese is HIGHLY recommended for this, but if you don’t have any or the time I’m sure store bought will work, just not as well.

½ lb quality Parmesan cheese (shredded)(divided)

1 stick unsalted butter (more for greasing the pan)

6 tbls all flour

4 cups whole milk

¾ cup heavy (aka whipping cream)

½ tsp white pepper (ground black will work if it’s what you have)

2 tbls prepared mustard (this will be to taste)
How we did it:

Begin by roasting your peppers on a grill over direct heat, until well charred on all sides.


Once they are done place them in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, set aside, and let cool.

While the peppers are cooling cook your macaroni according to the package directions…… with a few exceptions.

  1. HEAVILY salt the water. It should taste like the ocean.
  2. Add a liberal amount of olive oil. (¼ cup or so. Or you can do it like I do, just pour it until you get a good oil slick.)
  3. Check the pasta at the ½ point of cooking, it’s usually ready at this point. It should be firm to the bite, but not “crunchy”.

I’ve found that these 3 things VASTLY improves all of my pasta cooking.

Once the pasta is done cooking, drain into a colander, shaking a few times to remove excess water. Add the remaining olive oil, mix well, and let set. This will keep your pasta from sticking together while it sets.

Remove the skins and seed pods from your now cool peppers, retaining as much of the juice as you can.

Cut the peppers into a medium dice.

Toss in a bowl with any juices you may have been able to save.

Chop the green onions along with the firm green parts and add to the bowl with the peppers.

Dump the green chilies in with the bowl containing the peppers and onions.

Mix your shredded cheeses together, then set aside 1 ½ cups for finishing.

Begin making the bèchamel.

1st mak a roux

Melt the one stick of butter in large stock pot over medium low heat.

Sprinkle flour over melted butter a tablespoon at a time and whisk in.

Once all the flour is added continue to cook and whisk or stir until it turns a light tan color. This may take longer than you may expect.


Once the roux is ready, gently add the four cups milk and ¾ heavy cream whisking constantly.

Raise heat to medium high and bring to a low boil while continuing to whisk.

Reduce heat to medium and continue to cook while stirring.

Once it coats the back of a spoon it’s ready. KEEP AN EYE ON IT, once it starts to go, it happens fast.

*If your sauce does become too thick, just give it a splash of milk to thin it down slightly.

Remove from heat, and exhale, take a drink. The tricky part is done.

While the bèchamel is still hot add your shredded cheese, about a strong handful at a time. Reserving about a cup and a half.

Stirring until melted after each addition.

Once the cheese is all melted, dump in the bowl of vegetables and mix.

Add the 2 tablespoons mustard, mix well.

Taste. This will be the primary flavor profile of your mac and cheese. If it taste to heavy, add a little more mustard. However you don’t want to taste the mustard but it should at this point have a barely, almost unnoticeable acidity to it.

If it taste well balanced and is to your liking, add the macaroni and stir well.

Take another taste, because it’s time for another decision. If the smoke is solid your not going to want to add more smoke by smoking the final product on your grill.

Pour into the buttered 9X13 pan.

*Recipe up to this point can be made 1-2 days in advance, covered and refrigerated.

When ready to cook, sprinkle remaining cheese on top.

Set up grill for indirect cooking, medium to slow coals.

If you want more smoke nows the time to add it. I recomend something light at this point like apple, cherry, or maybe oak.

Place pan on grill.

Cook until the cheese on top starts to turn a nice golden brown, about 10 minutes.

Foil the top and continue to cook until it’s heated through, about another 20 minutes.

There you go,all that’s left to do now is enjoy some very creamy, smokey mac and cheese.

Remember what you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.

*All recipes on this site are solely those of the author unless otherwise stated.


Posted by on February 27, 2016 in Uncategorized


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Amazingly Easy Hot Sauce

Amazingly Easy Hot Sauce

As I mentioned in a previous blog post, my dad gave me a BUNCH of hot peppers. Of which most are either ghost peppers or scorpion peppers, some of the hottest peppers in the world. And as I mentioned I told him I’d figure out what to do with them. So, I’m making him several Christmas presents. This will be stop #2 on our road of what to do with a ton of hot peppers.

In these recipes I’m using the ghost and scorpion peppers, but use whatever you can get and whatever your heat tolerance will handle. It would be fun to mix in other peppers in and see what you get.

What to expect: This recipe will give you an amazing flavor. In the beginning you will notice a sweet taste right up front, then a healthy bight of the vinegar, finishing with an earthy taste from the peppers.

What you’ll need:

hot sauce blog 2

About 1/2 hour of time (at least 1 week and up to 3 months for aging)

Enough peppers to fill the bottle or jar you’re using

2 cups cider vinegar

1 Tbls sugar

1 tsp salt

How we did it:

Begin by placing your jars or bottles in boiling water and boil for about 3 minutes or so.

Wash, clean and dry all your peppers thoroughly.

Remove the stem ends from each pepper.


Place peppers in jar or bottle.

Bring cider vinegar, sugar, and salt to a boil.

Taste for seasoning, adding sugar or salt to YOUR taste.


Pour boiling vinegar mix into container to cover peppers.

Give a little shake to release any air bubbles.

Top off, seal, and store in refrigerator.

And that’s about it. The longer it sets the hotter and more flavor it will take on from the peppers.

Remember: What you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.


Posted by on November 16, 2014 in Uncategorized


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mrdodd’s Ghost Pepper Hot sauce

mrdodd’s Ghost Pepper Hot sauce












The good Lord has blessed my dear dad with two things, great soil for growing hot peppers, and a desire to grow hot peppers. LOTS AND LOTS of hot peppers. Every year he plants tons of peppers, then when his crop comes in it’s always the same question. “Son, whatever in the world am I going to do with all these peppers?” At which I reply “Give ’em to me I’ll figure something out.” This year was no exception, as you can see in the picture above he didn’t let me down. The difference this year though was all he had was Ghost peppers and Trinidad Scorpion peppers. We’re looking at some REAL HEAT here people…… and lots and LOTS of peppers to do something with. So you’ll probably be seeing quite a few pepper recipes coming from here over the next few weeks.

First up is our hot sauce or AKA mrdodd’s Ghost Pepper Hot sauce. Let me say when I’m using peppers or hot sauce, I use the heat ONLY as a flavor/dish enhancer. I’m never looking for melt your face off heat. If a dish is too hot too enjoy then it’s really kind of pointless.

What to expect: Heat obviously. The ghost peppers give you a nice front of the tongue burn. By adding chipotles we get a nice hit of smoke, and the roasted red peppers will lend a deeper richer flavor. The cider vinegar offsets the richness to lighten the taste.

Yield: 3-4 cups of hot sauce.

*** CAUTION***

If you’re not use to handling hot peppers or have any doubts, wear gloves. These peppers are the real deal so handle with caution. As a side note if you wear gloves once you remove the gloves there is no fear of getting it in your eyes.

After handling the peppers I washed my hands, did dishes several times and hours later forgot and rubbed my eyes. In a word @#$%& it STUNG!


What you’ll need:











About an hour of time

3 red bell peppers

3 cloves garlic

5-6 ghost peppers (if you don’t have access to ghost peppers I’m sure habaneros will work)

2 chipotle peppers in adobo

1 1/2 Tbls of apple cider vinegar

Salt and pepper for seasoning

4 cups water

How we did it:

Begin by setting your grill up for DIRECT grilling.

Char red bell peppers on all sides until the peppers are soft and heavy.











Once they’re done place in a bowl and set aside.

While the peppers cool roast your garlic until darkened and soft.

Slice your ghost peppers.











Place the ghost peppers in a ban with 2 cups of water and bring to boil.

Finley chop the roasted garlic and had to the pan with the ghost peppers.

Coarsely chop 2 chipotles and add to the water with 2 tsp of the adobo.

Remove skins from the roasted red peppers discard the seed pod reserve as much of the juices as possible. Coarsely tear the peppers and place in the water with the rest of the ingredients.

Cook until reduced by roughly 1/2.











Place into a blender and “liquefy.”

Add the remaining water.

Add the apple cider vinegar.

Mix well in blender.

Taste, adding salt and pepper, a little at a time. The sauce should be savory with high notes from the vinegar. You may have to add more vinegar, just play with it until you find the taste you like.

Bottle in bottles or jars that have been boiled.


Enjoy or unleash it upon your enemies.











Remember what you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.






























Posted by on November 9, 2014 in Uncategorized


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Hickory Smoked CHICKEN and Noodles

Hickory Smoked CHICKEN and Noodles

What could possibly be more comforting than CHICKEN and noodles on a cool fall evening? Maybe toss in some mashed potatoes and homemade biscuits, and you have nothing but a plate of pure comfort on a cold night. My problem with chicken and noodles is: 1) it’s usually bland and 2) it generally ends up being NOODLES and chicken. There’s nothing worse than having to go on a “scavenger” hunt to find the chicken in my noodles.

I thought to myself “we can do better than this.” My goal was to elevate the chicken to it’s proper place, as the feature of the dish. A quick recipe search on Google explained everything I needed to know as to why the chicken wasn’t the feature of the dish. Almost every recipe had two things in common. First they only called for chicken breast, and second they all wanted me to BOIL my chicken. Some tried to get fancy by suggesting adding this soup or that soup, a pinch of this or a pinch of that, but nothing to really elevate the chicken. Well Mr. Chicken you no longer need to live in the shadow of the noodles, YOUR DAY HAS COME!!!! IT’S TIME TO STAND UP AND BE PROUD THAT YOUR A CHICKEN!!!!!

What to expect: Nice big flavorful bites of chicken, well seasoned, with a simple little taste of smoke that’s not overpowering. Oh and some noodles.

What you’ll need:











About 2 1/2 hours

1 4-5 lb chicken

Salt and Pepper

Olive or vegetable oil

2 qts chicken stock

2 qts water

Either your favorite noodle recipe or a  1 lb package of  egg noodles  from your local grocer.

How we did it:

Begin by setting up your grill for INDIRECT cooking.

Wash and rinse the chicken inside and out.

Run your hand up under the skin on the breast and oil it.

Salt and pepper it heavily.

Do the same with the thighs and legs.

Then oil the entire chicken on the outside.

Salt and pepper the outside of the skin.











Once the grill is ready place the chicken on the grill between the two piles of coals.

Rotate the chicken 90 degrees about every 20 minutes so that it will cook evenly.


Once you register an internal temperature of 165f on the breast and 185f on the thighs remove it from the grill.

Remove the chicken from the bones cutting into thick bite size chunks, and set aside. Use ALL the meat. Both white and dark. Remember we’re looking for flavor here.











Mix the 2 qts chicken stock and the 2 qts water together and bring to a rolling boil.

Add chicken and noodles.

Cook until the noodles are al dente.

Drain, TASTE, and SEASON. Adding salt and pepper as needed. CYMERA_20141102_202256 (2)










Now enjoy as you hear the wind whipping the leaves around outside. Remember what you cook isn’t nearly as important as who you cook it with.



Posted by on November 2, 2014 in Uncategorized


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