Tag Archives: bbq

An art related post. Sort of.

9 Aug

My friends, who like art and studied art and create art, happen to also like food. Really like food. So when some of us get together, it’s usually for a potluck type situation.

Half of the food we had on this particular night isn’t even featured. Not only did I forget to take pictures until after people had started eating, but I missed most of the grilling action entirely.

The natural lighting in this room is fantastic. It’s the type of light artists (and food bloggers) love.

Not only is the food freshly prepared, but 75 % of the bowls and serving plates are hand made as well.

There’s no official end time to these parties, and they essentially fulfill all my cultural cravings.


A Tale of Two Sandwiches

24 May

Generally, I eat pretty healthy. I love my vegetables, fruits and whole grains. I go weak in the knees for goat cheese.  Even though in January I went a month without meat, I do eat it. I just couldn’t say goodbye to bacon. I just usually try to limit it to once a week or so, but this past week that number has been a little higher. You’ll see why in a few seconds.

Sunday I went down to Long Beach yet again. By the time August rolls around, I”m pretty sure I will have sampled nearly every restaurant in the West End. As much as I love the Beach House, I told my boyfriend I couldn’t eat there again. After all, I had just been there Friday and there are too many places I’ve yet to visit.  I’m pretty sure I made his day when I enthusiastically agreed with his request to go to Swingbelly’s BBQ.

I’ve seen their sign every time I walked in the area, but Sunday the smell of BBQ wafting across the street was too much to ignore. Inside the decor is fun, with the walls full of different statement making signs. It’s an odd mix of surf town vibe and down south.  Since the last time I had pulled pork was over a year ago, I knew exactly what I was going to order. Sandwich number one: Pulled Pork on a bun.

This meal arrived after our appetizer of fried pickles and I had consumed my first Shipyard IPA. I had ordered grilled vegetables to balance out the meal (and ignored all but two of the fries), but I devoted my appetite to that pulled pork. It was delicious. I had ordered it with the smokey bbq sauce (you can pick from several options), and I ate every last bite.

I can’t eat fried food and bbq every week, and there is no way I will ever even want to attempt the Swingbelly’s Challenge, but next time I have the craving for bbq I know exactly where I’ll be going.

909 W. Beech St. Long Beach


I came home later that afternoon and was in charge of cooking for my family once again. I try to wean them off of meat centric meals for every day of the week, and there is no way I could have had meat myself after that first sandwich. Instead, I whipped up Mark Bittman’s Almost Meatless Sloppy Joes from the last issue of Cooking Light.

Boy were these good. Instead of like sandwich one, which was basically meat on a bun, sandwich two was made with just six oz of ground turkey. Most of the bulk was made of grated carrots, crushed tomatoes, mashed / whole red kidney beans, and the different spices. The whole wheat buns were stacked with red onion slices, and served along with a simple side of steamed broccoli.

The two sandwiches were definitely on two different sides of the nutritious eating spectrum,but both were so incredibly good. I’m going into a food coma just remembering these meals.


30 Apr

Blackberry Crumb Cake

Now that it’s basically berry season, I can bake my favorite go to “bbq/party/I have to bring SOMETHING” dessert contribution. It’s a pretty simple recipe, and a pretty good crowd pleaser as well. I baked two cakes for one of the bbq’s my friends throw at our old stomping grounds…and before dinner even came off the grill, one of my three plates of cake was demolished. And seriously, who doesn’t like a good crumb cake?