Tag Archives: Talking with my Mouthful of Food

Oh I definitely want seconds at Bad Brad’s BBQ!

31 Oct

Written by Kim Cherie Fowlkes

I rarely leave a restaurant completely satisfied and with a smile on my face. My belly was so full when I finished eating that I had to relax before I could get up to walk to my vehicle; which was basically parked at the door. I was stuffed. Probably overstuffed. The outcome here was a total surprise to me and my co-worker Sonya when we took our first bites from our respective food trays that they serve the food on.

Like a lot of restaurants and eateries, I learned of Bad Brad’s on social media and I was immediately interested because of the photos that were posted of delicious looking food. Of course I followed them right away. I really wanted to keep up with what they were doing and when they were doing it. And, now I think I have had my eye on this place for at least 6 months and I decided that I was going to see “Brad” this month; more specifically, this past weekend.

Juicy Smoked Chicken Wings

I probably had looked at the menu once or twice when I initially followed them on “The Gram“. But, this week leading up to my foodie visit I looked again and again. That menu is huge. A huge menu to me is rarely a good sign to me.  But, I could tell that they had it together and this time a large menu was a positive thing. Almost everything on the menu had barbecue involved somehow. Ribs, Chicken, Brisket, Shredded Pork and Chicken, Pizza, Nachos, Fries, Chili and Chowder were all infused with something to do with smoked meats or a BBQ sauce.   I could not decide on what I was going to order because I wanted to try almost everything! Even the things I don’t want to eat on any other occasion I wanted to try at Brad’s.

We made it to Bad Brad’s on a misty and cold Saturday afternoon. It was not a bad drive from Flint and only 20-25 minutes from Grand Blanc. We got off the express way and encountered a traffic jam right on Baldwin Rd due to road construction going north bound towards the restaurant. There was no wait when got there and we sat right down. When entering the doors you will notice that the ambiance in the restaurant is a modern, rustic blend. It was very pleasing to my eyes. The guy and girl servers were dressed in green camo apparel as if they were out hunting. It all seemed to work together.

Perfect Sweet Potato Mash

Our server Trevor came right over to introduce us to the restaurant and gave us overview of what they were about when it came to cooking. He highlighted that everything there was made from scratch and then educated us on the different bbq sauces they had to accompany the smoked meats available on the menu. All of the sauces were centerpieces on the table so that you could try them on all during your meal.

Pig Candy 

Finally we were ready to order! My friend Sonya went first but, we had both decided that we each wanted to get and order of the BBQ TRIO which included  2 bones of St. Louis style ribs, 2 nice size Chicken Wings and, 3 slices of Pig Candy.  Ok y’all, when I tell you that the meat on the ribs was oh so tender, BELIEVE ME THEY ARE. They were perfectly seasoned not too much and not too little. I didn’t use any sauce. I didn’t need it and I wasn’t interested once I had taken a bite. The chicken wings were the same way except, I tasted more seasoning and smoke in the chicken even more mouthwateringly delicious. Last but not least in the trio was the Pig Candy. When I first read Pig Candy on the menu I thought to myself, Oh that’s a cute name” and fitting because the bacon is cooked/smoked with sugar and bit of chipotle powder and then turned into what must be sweet pork pieces. But, bacon is bacon. I love bacon, I will eat in anytime so, just bring it on…. And, what a surprise I got when I tasted this bacon!! It tasted just like candy!!!  It was definitely bacon but after being marinated in the sugar/chipotle blend and then smoked it was made it to a wonderful sticky delight. For this bacon a little goes a long way so share with your friends and family.

Fall off the bones Meaty Ribs

Sonya sides included the Bad Brad’s Pit Beans, Sweet Cornbread and the Collard Greens that were dotted with Black Eyed Peas. She could not stop raving about the greens. She said she knows there has to be some southern roots back there in that kitchen.  My co-worker was just as pleased as I was with her meal. We both agreed to wear clothing with elastic in the waist the next time we return.

Sweet with a spicy kick Cornbread

I was also impressed with the side dishes I had ordered. I was stumped there too but, lucky for me they had a Side Sampler which included any 3 sides. I got 4, Fries, Coleslaw, Sweet Potato Mash and Cornbread.  So, I always have to know how the French Fries are wherever I go and the fries did not disappoint here. I wanted more fries.  The Coleslaw reminded me of the coleslaw my Grandmother used to make when my mother would barbecue. They gave me plenty of that, enough for leftovers. Next I tried the Sweet Potato Mash. There was no description on the menu so I was not sure if this dish was a savory mash or sweet mash. I learned upon its arrival at my table that it was a perfect mash. When I asked Trevor what was in the side dish he wasn’t sure but he did find out for me. He let me know that it was cinnamon, nutmeg, butter, salt & pepper. I agreed to try it and when it came to the table I mixed in the spot of sweetened butter that was intended for my cornbread. I hadn’t even tried the sweet mash yet. But, when I did….It was a winner. It was again perfectly seasoned; not too sweet, not too savory. I could taste definite sweetness but the little taste of saltiness balanced it right on out. I wanted more of this too. The perfect mix into this outrageous meal was the Oh So Sweet Cornbread that is sprinkled with pieces of hot pepper throughout and is baked in a the form of a small round disk as if it was baked in a tiny cast iron skillet. I didn’t know if this was a side or dessert. It really didn’t matter though. I should have got one for each course.

The one thing I knew for sure before I got there is that I was going to get the dessert of Sugar Donuts that is served with a trio of sauces. But, after that meal of meals, there was no way I could think about dessert. That festival of food that landed at my table had me finished for the day. I may just have to work my way backwards next time if I plan to make it to dessert.

Coleslaw like my Grandmother’s

Bad Brad’s is taking the Culinary and Barbecue industry to school and I learned all about it on Saturday. Check out Bad Brad’s BBQ menu and let me know how you like it when you go!

I had to take some Sweet Potato Mash Home! 🙂

Made From scratch: A passion for baking leads Kim Fowlkes to success in and out of the kitchen – The Hub Flint

19 Oct

I googled myself today and this is what I found. I did this interview back in April I think. Today was my first time seeing the article that was written. What a surprise!😊😊😊😊😊

Click the link to read!


Made From scratch: A passion for baking leads Kim Fowlkes to success in and out of the kitchen – The Hub Flint
— Read on www.thehubflint.com/made-from-scratch-a-passion-for-baking-leads-kim-fowlkes-to-success-in-and-out-of-the-kitchen/

Effortless Creamy Caramel Apple Dip

18 Oct

Hey Peeps!

I got a good one for you today!!!!…This recipe is so quick and effortless to make. Put this in the 5 minute or less recipe section of your files. A little bit ago I wrote about my favorite foods for Fall and Winter and I probably listed 3 or 4 foods that had apples involved in the recipe.  Foods with apples are favorites of mine that stay at the top of my list. Since this is the beginning of Fall and today’s weather is so reflective of it here in Flint, Michigan I thought I would share this comforting and Effortless Caramel Apple Dip.

Make sure your cream cheese is softened prior to mixing.

And your brown sugar!

Use a large bowl to mix them together with an electric mixer.

Mix in pure vanilla extract next.

Go ahead and give it a taste!….. I did. 

 

This easy peasy dip is a favorite of mine because of its taste and its simplicity. It is very simple to mix this up but, plan to make it a day ahead if you can because it tastes better when served on the next day. Serve with sliced apples, fresh strawberries and crunchy pretzel sticks. You may garnish it with finely chopped peanuts but, I did not because my daughter has a nut allergy and I am always cautious whenever she might be eating anything I make.  Feel free to make two batches; one with nuts and one without. Just be sure to label the dishes *with nuts* or *nut free*.  Prepare this bowl of cream cheese heaven for your upcoming potlucks, holiday parties or tailgates. You will  love, love, love the taste of the blended cream cheese and brown sugar together. And, more than that you won’t believe is basically, that’s all it takes! Smile.

Effortless Creamy Caramel Apple Dip

2 (8oz) bricks of cream cheese softened

1 cup light brown sugar packed

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/4 cup finely chopped peanuts *optional*

Using an electric handheld mixer blend together the cream cheese and brown sugar in a large bowl, on a med-low speed until combined. Add in the pure vanilla extract and mix on low.

Transfer the brown sugar mixture into a serving bowl and garnish with *peanuts* if using. On a complementing serving platter prepare sliced apples and fresh strawberries.

***If making ahead, transfer mixed dip into a plastic container with a lid and refrigerate until ready to serve***

Happy Dipping!

An apple slicer/corer is a life saver. Use this for anything that requires an apple.

Use 2-3 teaspoons of lemon juice to keep your apples from turning brown.                        They will keep overnight too!

Perfect Slices in the making!

More Slices.

These fresh strawberries are bright red and so sweet! Delicious!

Can’t wait to share this yummy treat with my family! 

 

3 Days in Chicago and back home…

23 Sep

Whew! What. A. Weekend… How fast it went. I have just got through the door, ate a quick bite and brought in my bags and have gotten myself into position to go right to bed. Food,  fun and, travel can wipe a person out. I am so excited to share with all of you all the exciting things I did this weekend. My sister who lives in Texas met me in Chicago. When we decided to make the trip we both created a to do list while in the windy city. We checked everything off on our list. Every place but, one place was somewhere that had food. No kidding. That’s all we wanted to do. Eat. Try new restaurants. See new things. How awesome was that?! Pretty awesome I must say. Even though we checked off visiting every place on our list. We did not eat at every single one.  But, I will be back to eat at the ones I did not try this time.

Here is a list of all the food we tried this weekend:

  • pancakes
  • eggs
  • biscuits and gravy
  • hashbrowns
  • hummus and pita chips
  • vegan pita wrap
  • caramel cake
  • a german chocolate cake
  • peach cobbler cupcake
  • double chocolate cupcake
  • birthday cake cupcake
  • red velvet cupcake
  • apple pie empanadas
  • pierogis
  • fried chicken
  • mac & cheese
  • sweet potatoes
  • collard greens
  • cornbread
  • polenta potato cake
  • vegan fish tacos
  • vegan biscuit

I think that’s about it… Oh, I did get some popcorn from Garret’s and Nuts on Clark… We will talk about all of this later… I need to repent for all this gluttoness sin I committed this weekend.

A full review is coming this week. Stay tuned.a

Kim Cherie

#septemberwritingchallenge

day23

 

 

All About Raisins…..

12 Sep

As you may already know last week I was on the hunt for muscats. Before last week I had never even heard of a muscat. Learning about them came about when my dad told me his mother used “larger raisins” when making a Blackberry Jam Cake. I did know what he was talking about and because it had been so long since he had one he could not remember what the “larger raisins” were called. He called my aunt and she remembered that they were called something that began with the letter “M”. That’s all I needed to begin my search on the internet.  After a few clicks of the computer mouse some creative google searches I found out what the “M” word was. Muscat or Muscats.

After learning that muscats were not readily available in the grocery stores in our area, we bought some online from California and they arrived quite swiftly. Packaged in bulk, fresh and tasty. Before ordering from the internet, my dad and I were in and out of stores looking for muscats and; in our search I discovered they were several varieties of raisins. Now raisins might not sound overly exciting to read about but they are a great snack and go well in many baked goods, cereals and, salads. I use baking raisins specifically in my soft Oatmeal Raisin Cookies and traditional raisins in my delicious Coleslaw recipe which you can find here.

Here is a little more info on raisin varieties:

Baking Raisins: These are a must for me when I bake. They are not always available everywhere so stock up if you bake a lot. Baking raisins come in 6 ounce pouches filled with the traditional raisins and small amount of a sweet syrup that I believe partially rehydrates them which will leave your baked goods even tastier.

Dark Seedless: Raisins that are made from Thompson seedless grapes that are dried for several weeks. These raisins are good for almost anything.

Golden Seedless: Also from Thompson seedless grapes treated with sulphur dioxide to prevent darkening. These grapes have a shorter drying time. Use these for cooking and snacking.

Zante: Zante grapes produce tiny, dried currants often used for baking.

Last but not least:

Muscat: Muscat grapes yield large, fat, dark, very sweet raisins. Use muscats for snacking and baking too. Beware of the edible seeds inside the muscats. The seeds may be left in or out when baking but, I would suggest cutting the muscat in half and taking the seeds out one by one.

This concludes today’s lecture on raisin varieties. Tune in tomorrow for another episode of Talking with my Mouthful of Food. 😉

Kim Cherie

#Septemberwritingchallenge

day12

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