It was great to get back into the kitchen at One Britt! The past few weeks have been absolutely crazy with work, election and volunteer activities, but the weekends have been the busiest of all. Two Saturdays ago, we participated in the 9th Annual Angels Walk at Soleil Laurel Canyon. This fundraiser is sponsored by the Soleil Le Marmitons, a mens cooking club, and other great individuals to benefit the North Georgia Angel House. Ron and Brenda Laird lead the event, and it was my sixth time to walk. It is always an excellent opportunity to catch up with my friends at Soleil, and of course, a good excuse to eat some delicious Le Marmiton hot dogs! During my first Angel Walk in 2011, I had the good fortune of meeting Micki Farley, so this event holds a special place for me. I applaud the Angel Walk and the $4,000 they raised this year for an excellent cause.
Last Saturday was also consumed with volunteer activity. Joining forces with Goin' Coastal and the Kell family, we collected a ton of hurricane relief supplies for Puerto Rico. Zach and Josh Kell stored most of them in the event space at Coastal, until they ran out of room and had to move more to my office at Grant Design Collaborative. Coordinated by Buen Provencho restaurant in Smyrna, we worked with the organizers to deliver Canton's contributions direct to their staging warehouse in Norcross. Due to the generous amount of donations, Jeff Brown and I had to rent a 17 foot U-Haul to deliver the supplies! Joined by Josh Kell, Cory Wilson, Stefanie Joyner, Stephanie Villasenor and her
awesome son, Ian, we loaded 30 cases of water, a dozen boxes of medical supplies, canned goods, personal hygiene items and much, much more. Once we filled the U-Haul, I drove it to Norcross, assisted by my Co-Pilot, Jeff Brown. The truck had over 141,000 miles, and it was quite interesting driving it on 75 and 285! We made it and found the warehouse filled with wonderful volunteers who were sorting and packing all of the donations. We were so proud to hear that our delivery was the single largest of their operation, so thanks again to the amazing generosity of our Canton friends and neighbors! Special thanks to Rebekah Shelnut, Zach and Bre Kell for all of their assistance and encouragement. It was a true community effort.
Last Tuesday, I had the honor of sponsoring the Steve Buchanan and Chris Chandler Golf Tournament at the Fairways of Canton. This excellent fundraiser for the American Cancer Society is organized by one of Canton's finest, former City Councilman Wade Buchanan. Thanks to Mr. Buchanan and all of the golfers who participated this year. From golf to history, Saturday's activities included serving as a volunteer docent for the Cherokee County Historical Society's 2017 Tour of Homes. Jeff and I spent the morning at the recently renovated Hawkins-McManus craftsmen style home on E. Main Street. Ms. McManus did a beautiful job on the home, and her daughter's home next door was also included on the tour. Tammy and Stan Perkins featured their stunning renovation on the tour, and I was simply speechless when I had a chance to view their work. Thanks to them, and others, who have worked so hard to restore these beautiful homes on E. Main Street, one of the most important gateways into downtown Canton. Of course, we must also acknowledge the Historical Society for their tireless efforts to preserve our heritage.
Needless to say, I was totally exhausted by Saturday evening. I had several invitations, including a wonderful Casino Night fundraiser for the Cherokee High Boosters Club, but I needed a quiet night at home to collect myself. So, I sent Jeff and other friends to the Casino Night, and I stayed home to relax with Jazpur. I was in my PJ's by 7 pm and enjoyed a bowl of cereal for dinner. Wrapped in my grandmother's quilt, Jaz and I watched a beautiful independent movie, "Maudie," about an artist in Nova Scotia who defied the odds and challenges in overcoming debilitating arthritis to find fame and love in the most unexpected ways. I highly recommend the film, and it was the perfect way to restore and recover.
By Sunday, my chore list was quite extensive, but I was determined to find time to cook Sunday Supper. I needed the therapy and focused time in the kitchen. Anticipating our holiday trip to Spain and Portugal, I did some research on Portuguese cooking and found an interesting recipe for a spicy Piri Piri roasted chicken with potatoes. Originating in Africa, the dish was adapted by the Portuguese for a comforting and relatively simple meal. To accompany the spice of the chicken, I also made a refreshing tomato and cucumber salad. For dessert, I adapted an easy Portuguese dessert recipe called Serradura, a layered creation of whipped cream, Maria cookies and fruit jam. I added my own twists by using Biscoff cookies and orange marmalade for the fruit topping. Being Southern, I also made the dessert in small jelly jars instead of parfait dishes. Shelly Farrar of Riverstone Corner Bistro will be so proud of me! The chicken was phenomenal, but the roasted potatoes were the best part of the meal. Regardless of how you roast a chicken, just toss some potatoes in a little olive oil, salt and pepper and then place the chicken on top. I used the spatchcock method of butterflying the chicken to cook faster and cover more of the potatoes. The potatoes roast in the chicken fat drippings, and they are divine. However, the Serradura dessert is very simple and yummy, so I am posting the recipe for it this time around. It is easy to make, and everyone really enjoyed it.
Another busy week lies ahead, but I hope you all find some quiet time to restore, reflect and count your blessings. Bon appetite and best wishes to a very special community.
- Portugese Piri Piri Roast Chicken and Potatoes
- Yogurt Cilantro Suace
- Simple Cucumber and Heirloom Tomato Salad
- Serradura a la Bill
The Recipe – Easy Serradura Portuguese Dessert
1 cup heavy whipping cream
¼ cup sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
18-20 Biscoff cookies, finely crushed
½ cup orange marmalade + 1 tablespoon of orange juice or water
Crush the cookies until very fine. I used the old fashioned method of putting them in a ziplock bag and crushing them with a rolling pin. I actually used the jar of marmalade as my rolling pin!
Whip the cream, vanilla and condensed milk into semi stiff peaks.
Form layers by alternating cookie crumbs and whipped cream. Leave room at the top for the fruit topping.
To make the glaze, stir the orange juice or water into the marmalade, and heat in the microwave for l a minute until it becomes spreadable. Spoon the warm marmalade on top of the serradura and spread gently to cover.
Chill for several hours to set before serving.
Note: Substitute any fruit jam or fresh fruit puree in place of the marmalade to adapt to your own taste.