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@QuarryLaneFarms presents #OysterFest2012

So OysterFest started back in 2010 where we basically ordered hundreds and hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of oysters with one simple rule: As long as everyone shucks oysters, you can eat as many oysters as you like. Raw, cooked, in your pants…didn’t matter. Just wanting to share the oyster love by shucking and sucking these great bivalves. You bet, OysterFest was an instantaneous hit.

Fast forward to 2012: Did someone order hundreds and hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of oysters again?

Fo shizzle nizzle….cause this one’s a winner-winner-oyster-dinner.

Well, there was a whole lotta shucking going on – At this point, I am pretty sure I qualify for the MuthaShucker trophy.

Here’s the menu run down…

Soup: Cream of Asparagus Soup

Asparagus from the Chef’s Garden in Huron, Ohio. Easily the best asparagus I’ve ever had in my life.

@TheChefsGarden Asparagus – Fit for a king!

And it was pretty healthy since I added a whole bunch of creme fraiche too.

Super mahalos to @sobechic for the magical veggie box.

Salad: Watermelon feta basil

Watermelon, feta, basil, balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper

Yeah, call me a chick…I got this one from Pinterest.

Apps: Various cheeses from Grandpa’s Cheese barn and QLF Veggie platter

Grandpa’s Cheese Barn in Ashland, Ohio sounds creepy but it’s a great tourist trap place.

Grandpa’s Cheese Barn

Thanks to @srouser for the awesome Whiskey Cheese pick! Grandpa’s Cheese Barn is also a great pit stop between Columbus-to-Cleveland.

Also – who doesn’t enjoy a good veggie platter?

Veggie platter w/ dip

Yeah, call me Nancy now cause I got the dip bowls idea from Pinterest too. Mamsey Pansey!

Main: Chincoteague Oysters (VA) and East Point Oysters (NJ)

Chincoteague

East Point

We order oysters by the hundreds

Don’t judge. If you order your oysters by the hundreds, probably a better guarantee on freshness cause your fish monger should order fresh case(s).

Us? We have a direct line to Mr. Verba at Euclid Fish (@EuclidFishCo). Solid guy – trust him w/ my bivalves.

We can’t stress this enough – YOU SHOULD BE ON A FIRST NAME BASIS WITH YOUR FISH MONGER. Nuff said.

Here are my favorite shucking tools.

Happy Mother shucking!!!

Use whatever you like…but I’ve been using this stuff forever.

Raw Oysters – Oysters should always be really fresh, clean and clear briny deliciousness. Not cloudy or dirty.

Briny oysters clean and delicious

And shucking should be clean and easy.

There are about a million toppings and stuff to put on, but I’d really suggest you try a few without anything. Yes that’s right – really taste the oysters-plain, see what the oysters ate, and really taste the water they were raised in.

Balls out time cause it really tells a lot about your product and your fishmonger.

Also clues on oyster freshness, from outside the shells, check out the seaweed that arrives on the shells/in the box too.

Seaweed so fresh, you can eat it

Pretty fresh huh?

Roasted oysters

Similar to an Oyster Roast in Charleston, this is a simple alternative to those who can’t get over their textural issues.

Step-1: Throw them on the grill.

Step-2: Wait 3 minutes

Step-3: Easily open oysters.

Step-4: Devour.

Step-5: Hit on your oyster roaster guy (OK, this one is optional…sorta).

Rinse/Repeat

The oysters should cook in their shell and suck up the briny jus inside.

Oysters also pop open when they are ready to be pulled too.

Oyster roasting – pops when ready

So easy, a caveman can do it.

Deep fried oysters

Fresh shucked larger oysters, secret breadcrumb mix, deep fry for 1 minute, serve hot.

Fry baby fry!

Doesn’t get any easier right?

Dessert: mini lemon tarts and cake pops

Super huge thanks to @hfish of MyGreatBigRecipeChallenge for the mini lemon tarts.

Awesome crust!

Cake pops…yes the coolest dessert yet!

Cake pops and props

Easy and fun stuff – cake pops seems to be the latest rage for desserts.

They were delicious!

In the end, OysterFest2012 was all about great friends and meeting new folks. And yes, the props helped too.

Mrs. Lips galore, Mr. Meatballs, and Ms. Talonclaw busting out the props!

The Brit and Ms. America (with a guest appearance from bowtie sausage fingers)

Ladies all at once now…

Stash McGee and Smiles McGee!

Cake pops and props are a hit!

Mrs Bowtie and the Aloha Shirt Bandit!

Mr. Bond and Mrs. Peggy Sue

In the famous words by Bourdain, “So what did we learn today?”

Oysters + Bourbon + Props + Friends = Another successful #OysterFest2012.

Sweeping up shells and dreaming of the next OysterFest.

Reporting live from QuarryLaneFarms….

Has it really been one year since we started this blog?

Happy Blogoversary!

Blogoversary! uncha-uncha-uncha

We started this blog on February 2nd, 2010: so what better way to recap one year in the blog-o-sphere with a list of my favorite posts, sexy time posts, and of course our favorite food porn.

Most favorite posts:

1. Boeuf Bourguignon and guest Chef Fornication Francois : This is one of my favorite posts because I actually write a character evolution piece using food and Julia Child as the vehicle. Brings me back to my creative writing class in college. I am most proud of this post.

 2. Cantankerous Clams – Cause you’re gonna want to lick the bowl clean : Start to finish, step by step, almost all pictures. Keepin it real yo.

3. What is the best part of a McDonalds cheeseburger? : This post/memory drove me back to childhood…like hanabata days kine. Almost like that moment in Ratatouille where one is thrust back into childhood. The post obv not so much about the actual food itself, but the actions around food that drives us to eat.

4. Iron Chef Cat Cora meets a stoned stager and photographer : My attention to gas station details are second to none.

5. Chef Rick Bayless, as an orphan, were you found on the steps of a church wrapped in a tortilla shell? : Did you just picture Chef Bayless IN a tortilla shell? I did.

Sexy time posts:

1. Top Chef Jennifer Carroll in a bikini, Bacon bikini, Padma licking BBQ sauce sweaty-naked or https://quarrylanefarms.wordpress.com/2011/01/16/beach-fufu-drink-top-chef-boobs-thanks-chefjencarroll-damn-you-ericripert-caymancookout/ : The first started out as we mocked another Cleveland blogger. But with the popularity of Top Chef and BravoTV, these two posts seem to be very popular thanks to the bikini pictures, Chef Eric Ripert’s je ne sais quoi, and of course Host Padma Lakshmi licking. Grab a kleenex.

2. Wear your bikini for the 120lbs of pig Happy 4th of July – #oinkfest2010 : Cause our foodie friends are way cool esp since the piggy was so. damn. good. and the hot chicks in bikinis were outstanding. Love America on the 4th of July.

3. Symon Fieri QuarryLaneFarms Brown and DeLaurentiis: All in one place – Cleveland : One picture at the end (thanks HD) makes this post worth visiting. You’ll need a moment.

Food porn:



1. The Best Burger in the world is… : This post is still causing plenty of controversy. Food porn indeed as my vote for the best burger in the world.

2. Gigantic smoked turkey leg…Disneyland style. : Lotsa people with large pieces of meat. Nuff said.

3. @Nomnomtruck – The best banh mi sandwich ever #perfection #hotchick : The detail and close up/macro shots we took of this amazing sandwich is enough to get you a “culinary boner”.

Bonus: B-Y-O-Bacon at Mhenry in Chicago #eggslut : Just look at the last picture post. Happens to me all the time. “Don’t move, I’ll get you a towel…”

Entree the proverbial Bourdain phrase: “So what have we learned?” Well, I can easily say we here at QuarryLaneFarms enjoy our successes/failures of cooking, writing, photography, and of course eating. Our belief remains: Sharing your food is really sharing your soul, your thoughts, your imagination, and most importantly, the history of your family.

Thank you to all of our readers.

Special thanks to Joolie, Snoozie, Curtis, Giner, Sneakerhead, KHWattz, Ms. Veggie, Mr. Drenalin and of course all of our families. We’d be lost without you.

A wise friend said to me, “Keep drinking cause it gets better!”

Wilco

Reporting live from QuarryLaneFarms…

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