Yesterday was yet another busy day but at lease I made somthing to eat. Two things actually. The first was an Antipasto Salad. Everyone commented on how large it was for a salad and true technically this is supposed an appetizer. However this was our meal. I usually just eat this and skip the pizza that I purchased to go with it. I also usually have this with beer as it goes very well with it but again alas I skipped the beer.

I did say I made two things and yes I did. Jennifer wanted macaroni and cheese. Not just any mac and cheese either. Not home made mac and cheese but instead she asked for Kraft mac and cheese. She didn’t even want the “deluxe Mac and Cheese” but she insisted it be the orange powder stuff in the blue box!

Sam had company over as I prepared Jennifer’s dinner by boiling a pot of water as they all watched. Sam was making them Nachos while I was making the mac and cheese. I apologized and told them that Jennifer was not feeling well had had the taste of a 5 year-old. They look at me and laughed as they all said WHY? That stuff is delicious. Nothing else tastes like it.

I too had to laugh then. I did not grow up eating this but have learn to enjoy it. I still have to add some “Real” cheddar cheese and a bit of extra milk to get it down. I grew up rarely eating mac and cheese. I forget even now what the main course was when my mother served us the frozen Stouffer’s brand mac and cheese. Back then you had to heat it up in an oven and it took FOREVER. When the our first microwave was finally purchased and I learned how you could heat it up in minutes. I was in my twenty’s by then. Yes, after that, it was what I had for dinner often at 2am. Ahh the college age years. Sometimes I missed them. Well I miss the fact I could eat anything back then and not gain weight or have heartburn all night.

So I envied Sam and his friends who sat and ate there big plate of loaded nachos and watched somthing entertaining on Netflix with iced tea and sodas as I went upstairs to bed carrying two bowls of orange powder mac and cheese that was miraculously transformed into something delicious and comforting for Jennifer to eat and watched bad TV show about 90 day Fiancés . Such is the life of a chef I suppose.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)


Welcome to Monday. I hope you all had a pleasant weekend. Mine was good with the exception of having to work on a Saturday. It made the weekend go by even faster then usual. I also did NO cooking. Nope. None.  

I purchased an Italian hero Saturday night for dinner. Sam had company over and they ate dinner together. Jennifer is still not feeling well and had a few bites of my huge-a-mongo sandwich.  Between the two of us we still could not eat the whole thing.

Sam friend Ally is a lovely woman who went to culinary school before attending the same college as Sam now, so I imagine she is into food as much as I am. I could have probably talked her ear off but she was here to hang out with Sam and truth be told, probably didn’t want me talking to her about food all night. She would not be here long, so I left them pretty much alone to watch TV, talk and play some video game.

Sunday was so busy! First, I attended a BSA Scout Court of Honor. I will not bore you with all the details only to that it included Sam’s Eagle Scout ceremony. Congratulations Sam!! I am very happy and proud of you!! We had to rush out of there in the very end and attend a graduation party for our friend’s two sons. They are more like nephews to me and like Jennifer’s own sons as they were all very close when the boys were growing up. Now they are both off to college and we will miss them terribly.

I drank beer at the graduation party on an empty stomach. Then came home to eat the rest of my big sandwich with potato chips. Sam drove. Jen was feeling so badly she only ate some cheese and grapes for dinner. Sam went out to a local restaurant with his friend Ally and had Mexican food. It sounded like it was really good too. I have been there before and will have to eat there soon again and do a review in the very near future.

I feel like I am getting behind on the cookbook and recipes and will have to do some major cooking soon. The summer is winding down and work is winding up so I will run now and leave for work. Have a pleasant day! I have to get more recipes to you soon and I will!

The Drunken Chef (Russ)  


I woke up and sat at my word processor/computer/typewriter and thought to myself, “what the hell did I eat last night for dinner?! It’s getting bad that your brain does not remember the simple pleasures in life.” Low and behold, it dawned on me. PANCAKES! Yes, dear friends, I made pancakes for dinner. This was even at my dear wife’s suggestion, and she usually HATES pancakes, but she even complimented me on them and said dinner was very good!! I am sometimes amazed at the world around me. So onto today’s blog about small appliances.

For the sake of easiness, I will be pulling pictures off Amazon and will try to include the links. You are not obligated to buy any of these appliances at AMAZON. As a matter of fact, is it not more enjoyable to “shop for sales or deals” on all these items.

Let’s start simple with a blender, a universal piece of equipment I have been using since I was a kid making milkshakes. The last thing I used it for was the Green Goddess Salad Dressing Recipe.

Amazon Oster Blender $59.99

This is not my exact blender because mine is OLD, but this one should do the trick.

I also own a NuriBullet. This is nice when I don’t want to break out that bulky blender for a small job. It costs just as much as the blender above, but hell if you’re stuck for Christmas gift or birthday ideas…BOOM!

AMAZON NutriBullet NBR-0601

Food processor. Hardly. Ever. Use. it.

This is a small one hidden in my cabinet

You know what I do love? My Phillips Air Fryer

Philips TurboStar Technology Airfryer, Analog Interface

This is the exact one I own and I have used the shit out of this for years and it still cooks perfect frozen French Fries. Cost $179.00

Things that Toast…A TOASTER. This is a matter of personal preference. I own a two slice toaster because my kitchen is not huge. I also hide mine away in an appliance garage, which is nothing more than a “Bou-jie” name for a cabinet with a roll up door. If I were to leave it out on the counter, then it would have to be all-retro and cool looking.

Hand held Mixer. This is used in the mashed potatoes recipe that will be published sometime in the coming months. I just have not made them recently that I recall.

This one looks good for me because it stores well.

Hamilton Beach 6-Speed Electric Hand Mixer, Beaters and Whisk, with Snap-On Storage Case, White

Lastly, for today at least, is the stand mixer. For my money, nothing beats Kitchen-Aid when it comes to design and accessories. Yes, they are expensive, but it will last a lifetime. I know a wonderful woman who purchased one for her elementary school aged daughter as a gift. Now she will have that memory every time she uses it all through her adult life. Best gift EVER!

I own this small Artisan Series 5-Qt mixer that my wife got for ME as a Christmas gift one year. It was on one of those SUPER door buster sales at Kohls way back in the day. I love it and use it year round, especially when making chocolate chip cookies like the ones for those ice cream sandwiches just a few weeks ago!

That’s all today. Like the Gadgets List, I will be adding to this. Remember I have wire racks filled with cooking paraphernalia and a lot of it plugs in, so on that note, have a good weekend.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)


This is a nice side dish and starch for a big potatoes and meat meal. I love potatoes. That must be that bit of Irish in me.


3 pounds of Russet Potatoes

2 to 4 tablespoons Butter

2 table spoons olive oil

1/4 teaspoon Paprika

1/4 teaspoon Garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon Onion powder

1/4 teaspoon Salt

1/4 teaspoon white pepper


Peel potatoes. Cut potatoes into wedges. In a 9 X 13 metal baking pan, add potatoes. Pour oil over top. Sprinkle with paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper.  Mix until potatoes are coated. Add butter.

Place in oven with meat during the last half hour of cooking time. In fifteen minutes, stir potatoes. Add more oil and butter if necessary. Remove potatoes when they begin to brown.  While meat is resting, finish browning potatoes under broiler if needed.

NOTES: This is one of those recipes I asked my Aunt Betty for when my mother and I used to visit her. She used to make these with a leg of Lamb and use some of the lamb drippings in the potatoes……yummy.


How to make fish taste yummy for the kid in all of us.

So this is the famous fish and chips I make OUTSIDE. To me, fresh fish is what Summer and Fall are all about. I make this outside mostly because my wife can’t stand the smell of all that fried food in the house. Plus, you’re not heating up the house on a warm summer night. To cook this outside, I use the side burner on the barbeque, but the oil takes a while to get to temperature. I also use a cast iron pot so the temperature of the oil does not drop too quickly. Sometimes the fish takes a bit longer to cook, but it’s all worth it in the end.


3 quarts to 1 gallon peanut oil or canola

1½ pounds 1-inch-thick cod fillet cut into about eight 3-ounce pieces  

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour 

1¾ cups water

¾ cup cornstarch 

1 tablespoon sugar

½ teaspoon ground white pepper 

1 tsp salt 

2 tsp baking powder

2 yolks

1/2   a bottle of flat Guinness beer (6 ounces), cold


Mix flour, sugar, cornstarch, pepper, salt, and baking powder in large mixing bowl. In a separate large bowl beat egg yolks. Add water and beer to yokes and whisk. Slowly add the dry ingredients to wet whisking until smooth.

Heat half a pot of peanut oil to 375 degrees. Preferably using a cast iron pot or good electric deep fryer.

Thoroughly dry fish with paper towels. Using tongs, dip 1 piece fish in batter and let excess run off, shaking gently.

When oil reaches 375 degrees, increase heat to high and add battered fish to oil with tongs. Fry, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer fish to thick paper bag or paper towels to drain.

Serves 5

NOTES: Serve with tartar sauce and cocktail sauce and Fresh French Fries.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)


Here is the tarter sauce recipe for the fish and chips. This is also good with fried shrimp, fried flounder, or any fried fish. To me, this beats out ANY store bought jarred stuff hands down.


1 1/2 cups mayo

3 tablespoon sweet relish

1 tablespoon yellow mustard

1 teaspoon lemon juice

scant 1/4 teaspoon onion powder


In a small bowl put 1 1/2 cups mayo, 3 tablespoons sweet relish, 1 tablespoon yellow mustard, a squeeze from a 1/4 wedge of lemon (careful of the seeds), and a dash of onion powder.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)


Ahhh yes, good morning. It’s been dreadfully dreary and raining the last few days here on Long Island. Perhaps that’s why I’m feeling so tired, or maybe it’s that I am waking up at all hours of the night. I remember my mother complaining about such things, but never thought I would live long enough for this stuff to happen to me! Well, I’m awake and getting ready to go to work. BLAH. Thank the gods for coffee. Who invented this stuff anyhow? I should really look that up one of these days when I have nothing to do, which lately seems like it will be never. At least I have managed to keep cooking something every day.

Lunch yesterday was a salad of lettuce, tomato, cucumber, and grilled chicken with Green Goddess Salad Dressing . I don’t know if I even took a picture of it, but the recipe is surprisingly simple. That is provided you have a blender, otherwise I imagine it would be very difficult. I should start to put together a small appliance list, huh? Okay, maybe tomorrow’s post could be that. Let get today’s recipe —



Electric Blender

Wooden spoon

Chef’s Knife

Cutting Board


1 cup of watercress (stems removed)

1 cup flat leaf parsley (stems removed)

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup canola oil

1/4 cup Italian Salad Dressing (Vignette)

1 tablespoon Tarragon

3 tablespoons chives

1 clove garlic chopped

3 small or 2 large anchovy filets packed in oil

Fresh squeezed lemon juice (approximately 3 tablespoons)

1 tablespoon of cider vinegar


Wash and destem the parsley and the watercress then add to the blender. Remove the tarragon from its stems and place it on the watercress. Next, layer on the chives. Add the chopped garlic and the three anchovies. Add the mayo on top. Now, pour over all your liquids, like the lemon juice, canola oil, and salad dressing.

Cover the blender with its top and PULSE the blend until it starts to chop up the greens. You may need to stop and stir the dressing using a long wooden spoon. Make sure the blades have stopped before adding the spoon to stir. Continue pulsing and stirring until it begins to blend smoothly. Continue to blend on low for one to two minutes. Pour into a condiment bottle and serve. Makes about a cup and a half of salad dressing.

This is one of Sam’s favorite salad dressings. I think it’s perfect for the spring and summer when all these fresh herbs are in the local farm stands abundance! Does it make a good dip for carrots sticks and celery?

Enjoy life, stay healthy, and may everyone be kind to you.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)


© Russ Ahrens and The Magic of a Perfect Pairing, 2021


This past weekend, I grilled up some New York Strip Steaks. I could eat this every weekend if I had my choice, but these days beef is expensive. Plus, this is time consuming when compared to just throwing them on the gas grill. I just love the taste the charcoal lends to the steak. This is one of those meals I love making for friends and will have to do it again SOON!

I start my charcoal using this type of charcoal chimney starter with no lighter fluid. to get it stated I use rolled up newspaper with a little olive oil on it.

Enjoy your barbeques and enjoy your friends!

The Drunken Chef


Monday, Monday. I am for the three day weekend. The weekend was good but too short. My weekend started at BCH (Babylon Carriage House and then it continued on to Saturday with grilling steaks over charcoal and ended with heading over to see my sister for a couple of hours of pizza and old pictures.

Lets start with Friday night. Scott and Alison had returned from their Florida trip on Monday, and we were looking forward to seeing them and hearing all about their adventures. It helps that the Carriage House has some excellent food. Lets see if I can remember it all… We started with a cold bottle of Gabriella and macaroni and cheese with lobster meat (pictured below). There was also one of our staples, truffle mac and cheese. The truffle mac and cheese was as good as always. For starters they had a chopped tuna and avocado appetizer. We love this and don’t always see it so…. that was the first thing on our menu. The lobster mac and cheese was also a surprise on the specials menu. So we needed to order that. It was delicious from the first bite with just a hint of lobster on the palette. We were ALL lucky enough to get a least one nice big bite of lobster meat each and that out of a single serving. Considering there were five of us, including Alysa it was terrific! Next was the chopped baked clams. Three of us split one order of those. Having one clam each. I always love their baked clams and once again they did not disappoint me. Then there was the Cesar salad. I skipped the salad saving room for the main entre.

Scott had brought with him a red wine from BV. At the very beginning of our dinner, even before the first appetizers came, Scott had the waiter open the red wine and pour it for three of us to let it open up. By the time we were ready to order our main course the wine was ready. We decided to order the steak and rack of lamb. Now when I say “we decided” that means Jennifer and I let Scott suggest what pairs well with the wine. Even though Jennifer doesn’t drink she always loves his choices in food selection. I enjoy not really having to make a decision. So we are both very thankful for the fact Scott does this for us and does it so well. The lamb was a special this Friday and since most of don’t eat lamb often that made it an easy choice.

I started with the steak and the red wine. OMG. The steak was cooked perfectly! It was heavenly with he wine. Seasoned perfectly! Even though I love salt, it didn’t need any. I sipped the red wine before and after eating each bite. It was a slice of heaven. I took a break from the steak to try two of the lamb chops. To me, they were also cooked perfect. On the other hand Scott liked his lamb a little less well done, more rare. It did come out exactly how we ordered it, I thought. The lamb to was seasoned nicely just like the steak. Not the same seasoning of course. The lamb was season with garlic. It had more of a lamb taste for a chop then I’m am used to but if you like lamb then that’s what you want. It was nice with the wine but not a perfect match like the steak. Scott said: “The BV wine was a classic Bordeaux blend and perfect for the steak. The lamb would have been better served with a French Southern Rhône wine like a  Grenache, Syrah or Mourvèdre.” I decided to end the meal by going back to that steak and a second glass of the wine BV “Bordeaux blend”.

This wine went great with the steak

Thats all for today. More happened this weekend but Im tired and need rest tonight so I will leave off here for now.

See you Tuesday. Enjoy and be well.

The Drunken Chef (Russ)


Where did the week go? I’m even a little bummed that it went by SO very fast. I need to take the time and slow down. It just seems I have been so busy lately. The weekend is here and I have a full schedule. I think I’m sad too because Sam is going camping this weekend and won’t be home.

Well that means beef and pork are on the menu since those are two things Sam does not like. Tonight will be a trip to the Babylon Carriage House or as we like to call it, “BCH”. Our friends are back from Florida and it will be nice to see them again. It will also be fun to here all about their wonderful culinary and wine experiences.

Yesterday for lunch we all had tacos (see below). Everyone seemed to like them or they were just being nice and said they did. Either way at least they ate and went back for seconds, so it could not have been terrible.

Last night I didn’t eat anything amazing. After a short early evening Scout meeting, I made plain old cheese ravioli and heated up my left over meatballs and sauce to go with it. We all (Jen, Sam and my mother -in-law) all watched Jeopardy and Samantha Brown’s vacation spots to love. Then we called it a night and went to bed.

Up early this morning to get ready and come to work.

So that’s all for now. Enjoy the weekend!

The Drunken Chef (Russ)