Thursday, October 30, 2014

Halloween Cuisine & 2014 Las Vegas Region Halloween Destinations!



















  
2014 Las Vegas Haunted House Attractions

     There are many new Halloween Haunted House attraction in the Las Vegas Area.  Many of the old favorite haunted houses have returned this year and they are accepting victims too.  
    The annual Halloween Haunted Houses are usually temporary structures.  The locations change from year to year.  There are also several Paranormal Destinations that can be found at the same place every year.  
     The street address of the Haunted Houses and Paranormal Destinations in the greater Las Vegas area can be found in these Halloween event websites.  Information about events like the Fetish & Fantasy Ball are also listed.
     • Las Vegas Haunted Houses
     • 2014 Halloween Attractions and Events In Las Vegas - KTNV ABC News Las Vegas



Haunted House Articles From The Past



Halloween Cuisine!

Zombie!
Zombie Barf!

Retro!
   
Hooker!
Miso Hot Wings

Ghost!

Hawaiian!


Las Vegas Halloween 
Bar & Restaurant Destinations!

Bacon Extremist!
Bacon Bar, Las Vegas!

Doctors & Nurses!

Metal!

Candy!

Cupcake!

Iron Chef!

Dick!

Egyptians!

Wild West!

El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco Frozen Chupacabra Cocktail









     The Legendary Chupacabra
     What is a Chupacabra?  This has to be one of the most often asked questions in the west.  A Chupacabra is a legendary beast that has an evil reputation.  Chupacabra are most often spotted in Mexico and Texas.  There is quite a bit of local lore wherever this creature is seen.  Chupacabra stories rarely have a happy ending, so sightings of this creature are never taken lightly.

     Legend has it that the first Chupacabra were spotted in Puerto Rico late in the 20th century.  The reports from Puerto Rico are obscured by controversy, as one would expect.  Officially stating that a blood thirsty beast exists in a populated area would generate widespread panic and pandemonium, so the story was obviously quelled for good reason.  
    As time moved on, sightings of Chupacabra were logged by witnesses throughout the entire desert southwest, Mexico and Central America.  This creature has even been witnessed in South America.  Obviously the Chupacabra habitat covers a lot of ground. 

     Nobody really knows if Chupacabra have existed for thousands of years or whether this creature was a brand new species that was borne from a genetic mutation of some kind.  Some folks say that the Chupacabra came from some distant world in another galaxy.  Some even claim that Chupacabra come from parallel dimension portal, that was accidentally opened by modern science.
     A few ancient Mesoamerican cultural references describe creatures that look like Chupacabra, so it is possible that this reptilian creature has existed for a much longer time than first thought.  Those who believe in ancient reptilian civilizations, surely will cling to the age old descriptions of the Chupacabra. 

     Some of the modern witness accounts state that Chupacabra look like evil lizard people that stand on two legs.  Chupacabra have glowing eyes and spines that run down their back.  These creatures have big teeth and claws that can easily rip through flesh. 
     Chupacabra are reported to have supernatural powers, which included the ability to become invisible.  Chupacabra are able to hypnotize victims and render them helpless. 
     
     Apparently Chupacabra live on the blood of their prey.  Chupacabra prey upon domesticated farm animals and goats seem to be what these beasts prefer.  The name "Chupacabra" actually can be translated as "Goat Sucker" or "Blood Sucker," so this creature is a vampire of sorts.  
     Goats and small animals seem to be the primary target of Chupacabra attacks.  There are stories about how Chupacabra seem to becoming bolder as time goes on.  Chupacabra have been blamed for attempting to abduct small children in recent years, so Chupacabra do pose a threat that local folks do not take lightly.  When a Chupacabra is heard or sighted, a posse is formed to hunt it down.  Many folks in Texas set Chupacabra traps and it is rumored that one was actually captured. 

     Is the Chupacabra real?  Is the Chupacabra a ghost story that is designed to make kids behave?  The answer to both of these questions depends on who is asked.  Some say that Chupacabra are mangy wild dogs or mangy small bears.  Some say that the Chupacabra is a bedtime ghost story that is designed to steer kids away from trouble.  Some say that Chupacabra are like no known predator on earth.  
     All that can be said in conclusion, is that Chupacabra are scary creatures that have been seen by far too many people, to write this legendary beast off as being only a myth.  Anyone who has heard the shrieking blood thirsty screams of the Chupacabra in the middle of the night, will surely attest to this fact!       
  
     El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco
     El Rudo is a legendary Lucha Libre Wrestler.  "Lucha Libre" translates to "Free Fighting" or an unlimited free form wrestling style.  Lucha Libre Wrestling is big time popular in Mexico and the Southwest.  
     Lucha Libre Wrestlers are some of the most agile athletes that there is in any sport.  These big athletes do hardcore wrestling moves combined with daring acrobatics.  
     Spectators are thoroughly entertained by this wrestling style.  Each Lucha Libre Wrestler's has a unique character theme.  Lucha Libre characters represent good and evil to an extreme and this makes for some dramatic entertainment that really gets the crowd involved.  Every fan has their favorite Lucha Libre hero that they support.  Lucha Libre really gets the fans involved and this is why Lucha Libre is number one! 
  
     Tequila products come in all shapes and sizes.  There are many avid tequila bottle collectors that never pass up an opportunity add a unique new tequila container to the collection.  Some antique artisan tequila bottles have high collector value.  Every artisan tequila bottle is a conversation piece.  

     When I first purchased a bottle of the newly released El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco, I posted a few pictures of this tequila on a social network website.  The Lucha Libre Wrestler foodies that occasionally check this food website out, really liked what they saw.  El Rudo Tequila was an instant smash hit with the pro wrestler crowd!

     As far as tequila quality goes, El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco is pretty darn good.  El Rudo Tequila is smooth and the blue agave flavor pleasantly lingers on the palate.  This tequila has just enough bite to make things interesting.  
     El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco is nice on its own, when served neat with lime and salt.  This tequila has plenty of rich cactus flavor, so it is a nice choice as a mixer for cocktail recipes that accent the great flavor of classic tequila.  
     El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco is definitely worth recommending and the bottle is a great conversation piece!  For more information, follow this link:

     Cigar Pairing
     Te-Amo Cigars of any kind are a classic choice for pairing with good tequila.  Cigar fans need no introduction to Te-Amo Cigars.  Te-Amo is a classic Mexican cigar company that has a great reputation for quality worldwide.  
     The Te-Amo World Selection Series Dominican Blend offers a smooth mild tasting wisp on the palate.  This fine stick offers easy going relaxation.  
     Te-Amo cigars can be found at the largest humidor in Nevada, which happens to be the Paiute Tribal Smoke Shops in Las Vegas. 
     For more information, follow these links:
     • Te-Amo
  
     To keep things in perspective I do fire up a good cigar once in a blue moon, when there is something worth celebrating.  Like all vices, moderation is the key to maintaining health.  I tend to keep the few cigar endorsements in this website short and sweet, so temptation is minimized.              
        
     Frozen Chupacabra Cocktail
     A good Chupacabra horror story on Halloween can really spice up the party.  Spicing up a party is what a good Chupacabra Cocktail is all about!  
     There is no single definition of a Chupacabra Cocktail.  There seems to be as many Chupacabra Cocktail recipes as there are bartenders that make this drink.  There are many variations of the recipe, but all have one thing in common.  A Chupacabra is a variation of a basic margarita recipe.  
     *Guidelines
     Agave Liquor or Damiana Liquor can replace Triple Sec in the recipe.  The Tequila is usually blanco or anejo.  Fresh lime juice is essential.  Lemon Juice can be added.  The rim of the glass is usually coated with spicy chile pepper flavored salt.  Relatively few versions of the Chupacabra are prepared as frozen drinks.  Garnishing with pickled chile peppers adds more Chupacabra Bite! 

     Chile Pepper Salt:    
     Any spicy level of heat that is preferred is fine, but mild to medium spicy heat is best for guests.
     - 1/3 cup course Kosher salt
     - 1/4 teaspoon Spanish Paprika
     - 1/4 teaspoon Ground Chile Pequin or Ground Chile Arbol
     - 1/2 teaspoon Mild New Mexico Chile Powder
     Mix the ingredients together and place the flavored salt in a shallow rim coater dish.

     El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco Frozen Chupacabra Cocktail:
     Yield: 1 large cocktail serving!  
     Damiana Liquor or Agave Liquor can replace the Triple Sec.
     The alcohol measurement is standard.  Many margarita drinkers prefer a double shot portion of tequila, especially when the tequila is a call brand.   
     Measure 1 cup of ice cubes and place the ice in a blender.
     Add 1 ounce of El Rudo Lucha Libre Tequila Blanco.
     Add 1/2 ounce Triple Sec.
     Add 1 teaspoon of Light Agave Nectar.
     Add 1/2 ounce of Lime Juice.
     Add 1/2 ounce of Lemon Juice.
     Blend the mixture till smooth.
     Coat the rim of a fancy margarita glass with Chile Pepper Salt.
     Pour the Frozen Chupacabra into the glass.
     Garnish with an 4 to 5 Pickled Green Tabasco Peppers that are speared with a fancy cocktail pick.
 
     Viola!  "Scientists discover a Frozen Chupacabra in a remote area!"  Yum!

Bigfoot Mission Roadkill






     Rites Of Passage
     In northern regions, Halloween week is usually the last opportunity of the year for adventurous kids of all ages to go on a camping trip in the mountains, without having to worry about a surprise blizzard causing a dangerous situation.  Outdoor adventures of any kind during Halloween week almost always inspire haunting themes.  Sitting around a campfire and telling ghost stories is a tradition this time of year.  Sneaking up in the middle of the night to scare the bejeezus out of unsuspecting campers is part of the deal too.  

     Having the living daylights scared out of one's own being in the middle of a dark spooky night, somewhere out in a remote wilderness area actually is like blowing the dust off of an old book.  The is nothing like a good scare, to shake off the cobwebs and vanquish lingering preconceived notions.  All previous thoughts are quickly forgotten and adrenalin brings on great clarity, during a heart pumping moment of fun filled terror!
  
     Some describe an outdoor venture during Halloween week as being a rite of passage, especially when a haunting event is planned for the middle of the night.  Timid souls learn to overcome fears and the strong become leaders.  Heroes save the victims and the weak dig through the backpack for fresh underwear after the bone shaking scare is over.   

     During Halloween week, many folks spend tons of money going to carnival style haunted house attractions.  Many are worth the money, but some spook house attractions are simply a one-timer rip off.  
     There are people that scoff at the thought of paying money to enter a haunted house attraction.  These folks tend to prefer a real paranormal experience.  Going to someplace like an old abandoned insane asylum building or western ghost town well after dark is more to a realist's liking.  

     Sneaking into the old haunted house at the top of the hill at the stroke of midnight, where an old witch supposedly lived, is a rite of passage for overcoming fear that many adults remember doing as child.  Being called a scared chicken and being left behind, always leads to further torment from peers.  One simply decides within their inner self, to make the commitment to become bold enough to overcome intimidating fear, in order to be accepted by peers. 

     The World's Most Elusive Creature 
     Bigfoot creatures go by many names worldwide.  Many local cultures offer lore and tales of this creature that confirm modern eye witness accounts.  
     From the Himalayas to the Allegheny Mountains and throughout Canada, Bigfoot has been witnessed many times.  Russia has a legendary Bigfoot that lurks in vast wilderness areas.  Even the vast Everglades Swamp has a Bigfoot and this creature has even been seen by hundreds of motorists along the Tamiami Trail.  With so many sightings worldwide, especially in the American Pacific Northwest, one would think that this mysterious creature would have been captured at some point in history, but as everybody knows, this is not the case. 

     There is nothing that Natural History Museums and anthropologists would like more, than an official confirmation of Bigfoot, in order to further their cause.  Official confirmation of Bigfoot would provide opportunities for scientific organizations to be in the limelight for many years to come.  When big discoveries are made, funding donations increase dramatically, so there is inspiration for scientific organizations to find Bigfoot.

     Divining Bigfoot fact from fiction is not always easy to do.  So many hoaxes have taken place over the years, that many people now assume that the entire premise is false.  
     Most of the elaborate Bigfoot hoaxes have taken place in the Pacific Northwest.  At the same time, the vast amount of unexplained witnessed Bigfoot sightings far outweighs the evidence that has been proven false.  So, the legend continues and the numbers of those who believe this creature exists is greater than those who do not.     

     The Real Master Of The Bigfoot Search Game
     Bigfoot is one of the most hunted creatures on earth.  The reason being, is that Bigfoot has been witnessed many times, yet there is no conclusive evidence that officially confirms the existence of this creature as being real.  
     During the week of Halloween, many people make a pilgrimage to remote areas in the wilderness with the hopes of experiencing a first hand account that can confirm the existence of the legendary Bigfoot.  Some Bigfoot hunters organize search parties.  They camp as group in remote forests where Bigfoot has been seen gathering food more than once.  
     The entire Bigfoot search mission almost always starts as a serious venture.  If no signs of Bigfoot are found, the search mission gives way to a good old fashioned party in the woods, with plenty of campfire side Bigfoot tales being told. 

     It seems like those who pack the most scientific equipment and those who have the most serious intention of spotting this creature, end up being the least likely to run across Bigfoot in the wild.  Based upon witnessed accounts, is seems like the folks that have no thoughts of spotting Bigfoot at all, are the ones that see this creature the most.  
     As the legend goes, Bigfoot creatures have a reputation for psychic ability on a grand scale and they can easily sense when they are being pursued.  Basically, a Bigfoot knows what the trackers are up to well in advance.  A Bigfoot knows where the trackers are in the wilderness and where they are going.  
     So in reality, Bigfoot is the master of the game.  It is Bigfoot that decides whether a human gets close or not.  It is also Bigfoot that decides whether to scare the living daylights out of unsuspecting sleeping campers in the middle of the night with its eerie howls. 

     Bigfoot Mission Roadkill
     Since those who have no intention of seeing Bigfoot seem to see this creature the most, it makes sense to minimally prepare for a Bigfoot sighting venture.  Premeditated thoughts of finding Bigfoot lower the odds of success.  The least prepared have the best chance of spotting Bigfoot.  With this in mind, those who pack no camera or special equipment seem to be best off. 

     Grabbing some Jerky and an Energy Drink before venturing off to look for Bigfoot for a couple hours is as good of a plan as any.  There really are no standard rules to follow, so no single plan is better than another.  
     Hiking a few hundred yards down a wilderness trail, then hanging out for about an hour somewhere that offers a view of open ground is the way to go.  Popping open a can of energy drink to stay alert is not a bad idea, especially if bears are around.  Munching on a big beef stick always seems to inspire a survivalist mode.    

     Jack Link's Squatch Sticks by far, are the top choice of Bigfoot Mission Roadkill Survival Food.  Squatch Sticks are a recent gas station convenience store phenomenon.  Many folks like munching on roadkill like this while going on a long drive.  
     The word "Squatch" is short for the Native American word "Sasquatch," which translates to Bigfoot.  The word "Sasquatch" brings another fact to light.  Since the word "Sasquatch" has been used by Native Americans to describe Bigfoot for thousands of years, this confirms that Bigfoot has existed since long before Columbus thought he discovered India.  
     One cannot help to think of stuff like this while mindlessly munching on a Squatch Stick, while sitting on a log out in a forest out in the middle of nowhere.  A Squatch Stick definitely provides a Bigfoot Mission mindset!

     Energy drinks are all about the same.  Some are natural and some are artificial.  Some taste better than others.  Most energy drinks are nothing more than pumped up sodas with fancy names, so they should be respected as such.  Drinking a soda or energy drink is okay to do once in a blue moon, but consuming items like this too often can lead to health problems. 

     As an afternoon Bigfoot Mission Roadkill choice, selecting a Monster Energy Drink adds a little more drama to the cause.  The word "Monster" combined with "Sasquatch" sets a mood for conquering the fear of the unknown.  The extra caffeine sets the nerves on edge.  When the woods become dead silent, that is the time when one expects something big to happen.  When pumped up on caffeine during a creepy silent moment in the deep woods, the sound of a snapping twig can make a person jump clean out of their own skin!  
  
     Carefully selecting roadkill items that have names that clearly identify Bigfoot Mission intent is not a bad idea.  When an innocent bystander sees a Bigfoot hunter wielding a Big Squatch Stick and a can of Monster, one knows that some serious Bigfoot tracking business is about to go down.  This might even inspire someone to ask if Bigfoot is real.  This is all that a story teller needs to get the ball rolling.  Ce est la vie!

     Monster and Squatch Bigfoot Mission Roadkill is fun munch option and this combination is a good conversation starter.  Fun is what it is all about when searching for the elusive Bigfoot!   

     Here are a few links for those who heed the call:
     • Jack Link's Beef Jerky 
     • Monster Energy
     • North American Bigfoot Search           

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Jamaican Jerk Beef Skewers & Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread

























     Good Voodoo And Bad Voodoo
     I have worked with many people in Florida who came from the Caribbean Islands.  During the peak influx of Haitian immigration during the years of political turmoil on that island, Florida basically became "Haitian Island #2."
     Even though these folks took refuge in Florida, Haiti was still home for most.  Some were so fed up with politics and living conditions in Haiti that they vowed to never return.  Some became so fed up with Florida politics, that they could not wait to get back to their homeland.

     Back in the 1990's, Haitian immigrants were seeking any kind of job they could get in Florida.  Because modern Florida is basically nothing more than a big retirement home and a seasonal tourist trap, entry level health service related jobs and hospitality industry jobs that paid substandard wages were fairly easy to land.

     Florida is a state that outlaws organized labor.  This state has taken the Right To Work Law bias to an extreme, that greatly favors employers.  Basically, wager earners in Florida cannot be part of an organized labor union, so there is no bargaining power.  Because Florida Right To Work Laws favor employers, wager earners have few employee rights, as far as job security and unemployment compensation are concerned.

     The average wage in Florida is far below modern standards and the high cost of living in that state guarantees that wage earners will be subject to an existence of continually fending off debt, while living on one low paycheck to the next.  What this all adds up to is a state that depends on cheap labor that cannot organize to gain bargaining power, which is the same thing as white slavery.

     Haiti is a nation that was borne from the Spanish, French and British slave trade.  Haiti is the first African origin nation in the western world.  Anytime that slavery exists, a nation has two cultures.  The culture of the ruling party and the hidden culture of those who are subject to the powers that be.

     To a degree, the language and tradition of the hidden culture often is secretive, so the ruling power has less information to act upon.  Pigeon English and many Slang Tongue languages of the Caribbean developed as a means of communication within the hidden culture of slaves and downtrodden people.  These languages were less likely to be interpreted by the ruling powers, so these Slang Tongue languages allowed the subjects to speak freely amongst themselves, without having to worry about retaliatory recourse.

     Traditional ancient religious practices also exist in oppressed hidden subcultures that are subject to an absolute power authority.  Often the ancient religious practices are pagan in nature, so throughout history these kinds of ancient religions had to fly under the radar of Christianity and Catholicism, in order to avoid persecution.  Often the traditional religious practice of an indentured subculture suits the needs of the people who need help the most.  Voodoo is a good example.

     Voodoo is one of the most misunderstood religious practices that there is.  Voodoo does involve spell casting, sacrificed offerings, symbolic tokens and worshipping deities that are gods of certain realms, so by the old school Catholic inquisition definition, Voodoo is a pagan religious practice.

     Many people understand the meaning of the old "My Church Is Better Than Your Church" parody novelty song that was aired on local talk show radio stations in the 1980's.  When an organized church and state entity seeks absolute power, a cooperative joint venture is the means for accomplishing this goal.  The armies conquer and the church unleashes propaganda that is aimed at all other religions.

     Throughout the history of the Vatican-Roman Empire cooperative effort, the Catholic religious order used every means possible to propagandize pagan religions, in order to justify the violent acts that were committed upon subjects that practiced pagan religion.  This was all part of the Roman Empirical master plan for attaining absolute power over conquered civilizations.
     Acts of genocide and religious cleansing began during the times of the ancient Roman Empire, when the power broker leaders of the empire realized that to completely conquer a barbaric civilization, the religion of that civilization had to be vanquished.  During the ancient times of the Roman Empire, through the Middle ages of European history, for an empirical leader to have absolute power, the subjects could only believe in one leader, one religion and one monetary system.

     Because the Vatican had so much power in Europe during the age of global exploration, any country that sought world dominance had to create an allegiance with the Catholic organization.  When the Spanish set out to conquer the new world, an allegiance with the Vatican was created, so the agendas of both parties could be advanced.  Native religions were abolished and propagandized as pagan belief.  An all encompassing religion was forced upon all conquered native subjects and those who were enslaved by the conquerors.

    Any religion that was viewed as subversive competitor by Vatican order, was quashed by whatever measure was necessary, even if it meant burning thousands of innocent people at the stake.  Politically speaking, by barring the religions of conquered people, this ensured that a rebellion could not be organized by the downtrodden subjects.  Before the modern times, local native religions served  to create unity within a culture and to address social issues.  By banishing local religions, a conquered people had less ability to organize or communicate thoughts of revolution.

      So, where does Voodoo fit into the picture?  Voodoo is a traditional religious practice that has its roots in Nigeria.  The hidden cultures of downtrodden African slaves in the Caribbean retained their traditional African religious practices, with secrecy and discretion, while also adopting the Catholic faith of the ruling parties.  Voodoo is one of the traditional religious practices that was valued by downtrodden people in the age of the Caribbean slave trade.

     Good Voodoo is the most common Voodoo practice.  Good Voodoo involves rituals that provide medicinal healing of loved ones, a change of luck and relief from sorcery curses cast by enemies.  Voodoo Priests that practice good faith are highly respected.  Overall, Good Voodoo is respectful religious practice that has no intention of harm.
     Over 99% of all Voodoo religion is a good thing.  This is why the Vatican finally officially recognized Voodoo as being a valid beneficial religion a few years ago.  Apparently Voodoo is one of the few pagan religions that the "Big Church" tolerates because it is a religion of healing when used for good purposes.

     On the flip-side, Bad Voodoo is something altogether different than Good Voodoo.  Traditionally, Bad Voodoo is only practiced by Voodoo Priests during times of war.  Bad Voodoo can be flat out evil as hell for enemies that this religious practice is directed toward.  An enemy that is the target of Bad Voodoo is subject to bad luck, illness, soul possession and even death.

     One of the heaviest Bad Voodoo practices during times of war or vengeance, involves using Zombie Dust to turn enemies into mindless zombies, that are controlled by the commands of a Voodoo Priest.
     Zombie Dust is made with Pufferfish Toxin, which paralyzes victims for several days.  This toxin simulates death, by shutting bodily function systems down to an undetectable level.  The body swells up and it smells like rotting flesh, even though the victim is alive.  Victims of Voodoo Dust are often mistakenly pronounced as being dead by medical authorities.
     The victim of Voodoo Dust is somewhat conscious during the experience.  Voodoo Dust victims can even be conscious while going through autopsy procedures by a medical examiner, while being powerless to let the doctor know that they are still alive.
     Voodoo Dust victims are usually buried alive in a grave for a few days.  This experience causes victims to believe that they are dead and all mental processes shut down.  After a few days in the grave, the Voodoo Priest resurrects the victim from the grave and completely takes over the victim's mind.

     During times of war, Bad Voodoo is scary stuff that is real and not fantasy.  During the Haitian Revolution of 1791 through 1804, Haitian Voodoo Priests that usually practiced Good Voodoo, resorted to the age old ways of casting Bad Voodoo on the enemy.  There are many documented historical tales of real horror during the first Haitian Revolution that are attributed to Bad Voodoo.
     The French Army felt the long lasting effects of Bad Voodoo curses.  The thought of being of healthy body and mind, then suddenly being struck down by terminal illness or being turned into a mindless zombie that is subject to the control of a Haitian Voodoo Priest, weighed heavily on the minds of French Army personnel during that war.  Bad Voodoo is the ultimate psychological warfare and Bad Voodoo was a factor in the liberation of Haiti.

     Like I mentioned earlier, I worked with many Haitians in Florida restaurants and I hired many Haitians that needed jobs, while the recent liberation of Haiti was going on.  Needless to say, I learned a lot about Haitian ways while in Florida.
     When somebody makes fun of Voodoo, as if this religious practice was some kind of Hollywood comic book joke, there is one quote from an old Haitian coworker friend that comes to mind ... "Voodoo is nothing to joke about!"

     Today's Weird Halloween Recipe
     "Bad Voodoo has nothing to do with sticking pins in dolls.  Or does it?  That sudden pain in the neck just happened on its own ... Right?"

     There are many evil dubious slave driver chefs, managers and restaurateurs that I worked for, that I would like to dedicate today's Voodoo Doll recipe to, but that would not be Good Voodoo.  Misuse of Bad Voodoo does have consequences.
     A dubious chef or slave driver manager that sees a cook make today's recipe would surely contemplate firing the cook on the spot.
     On the other hand, a dubious chef or manager might deserve some Bad Voodoo.  Eating the symbolic Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread might even result in tormenting an evil supervisor to unimaginable hellish limits.

     Anyway, retaliatory vengeance is never part of the Voodoo religion for many good reasons, especially during times of peace.  However, the thought of such a thing is intimidating.
     To create an intimidating looking Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread, one has to think like a pissed-off Voodoo Priest.  Forget about going fancy.  Go with raw looks!
     Many Voodoo Priests use powdered slaked lime or chalk to dust symbolic offerings in rituals.  Voodoo Doll Bread that is spattered with powdered sugar achieves this raw symbolic dusting effect and it gives the Voodoo Doll Bread an intimidating look.
     The placement of the skewers is another factor of Voodoo intimidation.  Placing the Jamaican Jerk Beef Skewers in the most painful parts of the Voodoo Doll Bread body, really sends a message to Halloween dinner guests!

     "This skewer goes in the neck!  Mwahahaha! ...  This skewer is for all the broken hearts!  Mwahahaha!  ... and ... This skewer goes right in the man part yin yang!  Mwahahaha!"  

     As one can see, a cook can have fun when putting the Voodoo Doll Bread presentation together, as long as ill will is not involved and the spooky nature of Halloween is light heartedly represented.  Good dedicated chefs or home cooks would never serve an ill fated food presentation to dinner guests that are writhing in pain, from a symbolic Voodoo Doll Bread Jerk Beef Skewer Halloween Food Presentation. ... Or would they?  "Mwahahaha!"  

     Beer Pairing
     Its the Halloween season, so I have been pairing beers that have evil looking artwork on the label this month.  Weird evil looking beer names are good Halloween party conversation starters.
     Hell On High Quad Bock Beer is as evil as a strong beer gets!  This Belgian Style Quad Bock contains 14% alcohol, yet the taste of the alcohol is barely noticeable.  This extra strong Quad Bock sneaks up like a demon on a dark night with no moonlight and thoroughly consumes the soul.

     Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje is a brewery in Lithuania that produces some of the greatest craft beer in the world.  Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje values old world beer brewing tradition over modern trends that are short lived.  This Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje Baltic Region beer brewing philosophy is reflected upon in their Belgian style Hell On High Quad Bock.

     The Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje Brewery only uses pure water and natural grains to brew their beer.  No cereal grains are added.  Just like Russia, inorganic GMO grain is not allowed.  Even the yeast has to be traditional and specific to the beer brewing style.
     For a Belgian style beer, the yeast has to be a local airborne strain that is native to Belgium, like the infamous Belgian Satan Yeast Strain.  The brewing style has to be the same as what the Trappist Monks first started in Belgium many centuries ago.  The hops selection has to be traditional too and the hops flavor cannot be overwhelming.  These high standards of tradition and excellence are what sets the Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje craft brewery products apart from the rest.

     Bock Beer is a traditional German Lager brewing style.  All lagers are aged in wooden casks.  Bock Beer is usually designed to be aged for an extended time and shelf life of the bottled bock beer also extends for a longer time than a standard lager.
     Traditional Bock Lagers are brewed strong, so they last through the entire winter season.  A regular Bock Beer is often call Maibock, because any extra leftover winter stock of this beer is consumed in the month of May, when the spring planting season begins.
     An extra strong Bock Beer is called a Doppelbock or Double Bock.  A super strong Bock Beer is called a Quad Bock.  Hell On High is definitely in the Quad Bock category.

     Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje Hell On High Quad Bock has an easy to like caramelized malt flavor that bock beer fans like.  This quad bock is well balanced.  The clarity is excellent.
     Overall, Hell On High Quad Bock Beer is masterfully crafted and it is very easy to recommend, especially for a Halloween party!  Hell On High is a seriously strong beer, so moderation must be exerted when this beer is consumed.
     As far as a Halloween ghost story conversation starters goes, Hell On High will certainly loosen the tongue and spooky stories will flow freely.  Hell On High is a very strong beer that tastes awesome!
     Fore More information about the brewery, follow this link:
     • Rinkuškiai Alaus Darykloje    

      Jamaican Jerk Marinated Beef Skewers Preparation:
      This recipe yields 1 portion of five petite skewers!
     Mix these ingredients together in a mixing bowl:
     - 1/4 cup of brown sugar
     - 2 ounces of amber rum
     - 1 thin sliced lime
     - 1 ounce of lime juice
     - 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
     - 1/4 cup of water
     - 2 minced green onions
     - 2 tablespoons of Scotch Bonnet Pepper Sauce
     - 1 teaspoon of crushed dried red pepper (crushed dried red chile caribe)
     - 1 teaspoon of allspice
     - 1/2 tablespoon of thyme leaves
     - 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
     - 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt.
     - 1/4 teaspoon of powder
     - 1/2 teaspoon of ginger powder
     Stir the ingredients together.
     Place the marinade in a shallow container.
     Select a piece of top sirloin steak that is about 3/8" thick.
     Cut 5 strips that are about 5" to 6" in length.
     Weave the steak strips on thin metal skewers that are about 6" in length.
     Place the skewers in the marinade.
     Seal the container.
     Chill for 24 hours in a refrigerator.  Toss the Jerk Marinade over the beef occasionally.  

     Brown Sugar Newspice Buckwheat Bread:  
     This small batch recipe yields enough dough to make 1 large single portion Voodoo Doll and one standard 14" baguette.  This bread is designed to be heavy and dense.
     Newspice is an old Caribbean word that means Allspice.  
     Buckwheat actually is not in the wheat grass family of plants.  It is related to rhubarb and sorrel.  Buckwheat is a top choice grain in Ukraine, Russia and American Southern States.  Buckwheat has a strong flavor and it is highly nutritious seed flour.  
     For bread making, mixing buckwheat with white whole wheat flour ensures that their will be enough gluten content to create a nice texture.  Baking powder is also added.  Cocoa Powder gives the bread a nice brown color.
     This recipe is written for a mixer with a dough hook.  
     Place 1 cup of water in a sauce pot.
     Add 1 cup of milk.
     Add 1/4 cup of light brown sugar.
     Gently heat the liquid to 112º.
     Place the liquid in a mixer bowl.
     Add 2 tablespoons of fresh yeast or 1 tablespoon of dry yeast.
     Place the mixing bowl in a lukewarm place like on a towel on top of a warm oven.
     Wait for the yeast to activate.
     Add 1 1/4 cups of buckwheat flour.
     Add 1 1/2 cups of white whole wheat flour.
     Add 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder.
     Add 1 teaspoon of allspice.
     Add 1 teaspoon of Kosher Salt.
     Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder.
     Add 2 tablespoons of melted unsalted butter.
     Place the mixer bowl on the mixer and attach a dough hook.
     At low speed, mix till a very loose wet dough is formed.
     Start adding a little bit of wheat flour at a time, till the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl.  (Add just enough flour, so the dough starts to look like it can gather on the dough hook.  About 1/2 cup to 1 cup.  The amount depends on atmospheric conditions.)
     Allow the dough to mix and knead at a low speed for about 5 minutes.  By now the dough should be gathering on the hook.
     Remove the mixer bowl from the mixer and remove the dough hook.
     Cover the dough in the mixing bowl with a dry towel.
     Set the bowl on top of a warm oven, with a second towel underneath the bowl to protect the dough from too much heat.
     When the dough rises more than double, beat it down with your knuckles.
     Place the dough on a lightly floured counter top.

     Shaping:
     Roll the dough into a large ball.
     Cut 1 portion of dough that is large enough to make a Voodoo Doll Figure Shape that is 9" to 10" tall.
     Shape a Voodoo Doll Bread Shape and place it on a parchment paper lined baking pan.  (Lightly brush the parchment paper with vegetable oil.)
     Roll and tuck the remaining dough portion with your hands to make 1 baguette shaped loaf that can be served with another meal.
     Brush each dough shape with melted unsalted butter.

     Proofing:
     Place the pans and dough in a warm area.
     Allow the dough to rise to rise for only about 4 minutes, so the texture will be dense.

     Baking:
     Bake in a 425ºF oven, till the bread becomes a brown color and the center temperature reaches 190ºF.
     Place the pan on a cooling rack.

     Decorating The Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread: 
     • Sprinkle pinches of powdered sugar over the head, hands and feet of the bread doll.
     • I used a leftover tube of Black Gelatin Cake Decorating Icing from a product review article that was published last week.  Any black tinted simple icing can be used to paint the face on the doll.   A classic look is X's for eyes and a frowning mouth.

     Jamaican Jerk Beef Skewers & Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread:
     Decorate a plate, so the plate looks like a sun and grassy green ground theme, like the one in the photos or create your own decorative theme.  Cilantro leaves, small diced mini sweet bell peppers and a paprika garnished slice of lemon was used to decorate the plate in the photos. 
     Place a small wedge of the extra bread on the center of the plate, so it will prop the Voodoo Bread Doll up.
     Lean the Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread on the bread wedge.
     Heat a ribbed cast iron griddle or char grill over medium heat.
     Grill the Jamaican Jerk Beef skewers, till they are fully cooked, but not dried out.
     Pin the Jerk Beef Skewers into painful locations on the Brown Sugar Buckwheat Voodoo Doll Bread.  (Try not to think of Bad Voodoo!  Only Good Voodoo is acceptable in this modern age!)
     Use a tube of Red Gelatin Cake Decorating Icing or a thickened red tinted simple syrup to paint blood drops where each skewer is stuck in the Voodoo Bread Doll.
   
     Voila!  This is a tasty Halloween creation that will certainly draw laughter from guests.  Yum!  

Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Warrior Sword Kabob!





















    
     A sword kabob of Southwestern Spice Marinated Ball Sirloin Tip Steaks, Za'Atar Chicken Breasts, Blueberry Sausage, Spicy Italian Sausage and Sweet Mini Peppers!  Served with Curry Rice, King's Hawaiian Rolls, Grilled Bermuda Onion and Heirloom Tomato.

     Mainstream Cultural Theme Restaurants 
     Theme Restaurants that offer a unique dining atmosphere do tend to offer menu items that support the theme of the restaurant.  For example, at a Route 66 Diner, classic American roadside diner cuisine supports the concept theme.  Western Omelets, Chili, Steak Sandwiches and Shakes are menu items that support the Route 66 diner theme. 

     Some Theme Restaurant concepts have a standardized format.  Many ethnic cultural cuisine restaurants have a standardized format.  Chinese, Italian, Mexican or Indian restaurants in America all seem to have concept theme formats that represent the respective cultural cuisine.  There are usually limitations placed upon the variety of cultural food items offered.     
     It seem like nearly every "cookie cutter" mainstream cultural cuisine restaurant offers the same old menu items.  From one mainstream cultural cuisine restaurant to the next, the same old "Moo Goo Gai Pan, Spaghetti & Meatballs, Beef Enchiladas and Curry Chicken" menu is offered with little variation.

     Mainstream cultural cuisine restaurant menu themes represent the food of the culture to a limited degree and the menu variety range is often restricted.  Emphasis is usually placed upon a preconceived notion of only marketing menu items that will appeal to a stereotypical mainstream "middle of the road" clientele base.  Traditional food items that are deemed to be outside of the range of mainstream clientele tastes are left off of the menu.  
     Honestly, thinking that the clientele base has limitations, equates to limiting the clientele base.  Anytime that restrictions are placed on variety, restrictions are also placed on business potential.    Thinking that only mainstream items can be offered on a cultural theme restaurant menu is an outdated mode of menu planning design.  

     Because of food topic network television and food topic radio shows, the general public has more knowledge about international cuisines than ever before.  The average restaurant customer is much more adventurous these days and they are no longer satisfied with the same old limited selection of menu items that are offered by cultural theme restaurants, that only target a mainstream clientele base.  Restaurant customer education demographics have changed so much in the last ten years, that the old adage of assuming that customers have limited international cuisine knowledge is passé.
   
     Assuming that customers will only like the same old menu, that offers the same old mainstream cultural cuisine items, is a mistake in this modern age.  A privately owned cultural cuisine restaurant that only offers mainstream menu items will end up being in direct competition with national brand chain restaurants that offer bastardized versions of the same mainstream cultural cuisine menu items for an artificially low price.   

    National chain restaurants that have a cultural cuisine theme always rely on the assumption that the dining public has little or no cultural food knowledge, so only mainstream cultural food items are offered on the menu.  Eventually this clientele base will decline in numbers, as the dining public increases their cultural cuisine knowledge.  
     Cultural cuisine education in the mass media will cause the dining public to stop settling for a cheap imitation of the real thing.  The dining public will then seek privately owned cultural theme restaurants that offer real deal authentic cuisine and a menu that offers much more than just stereotypical mainstream items.  
  
     Targeting a "middle of the road" clientele base used to be a the golden path for success for a cultural cuisine theme restaurant.  In this modern age, targeting the stereotypical "Joe Average" customer is quickly becoming a business prospect death knell.  As the dining public becomes more educated, the amount of "middle of the road" customers becomes fewer and farther between.  
     When considering that high percentage of restaurants actively only target a "middle of the road" clientele base, it is easy to see why consumer interest has been in decline and why so many mainstream restaurants are floundering financially these days.
  
     I have heard many old school restaurant managers say "the dining public is just mindless cattle waiting to be fed and the dining public knows nothing about cultural cuisine."  This old school attitude still exists in the restaurant industry today and this attitude can be likened to an dinosaur that is destined for extinction.  
     Restaurant customer interest demographics have changed dramatically in the last ten years.  Cultural cuisine restaurants that rely on antiquated restaurant customer demographics to justify a stereotypical "middle of the road" marketing strategy,  definitely are missing out on golden opportunities.  

     Theme Restaurants With Eccentric Concepts
     Now this is where the fun begins!  I have always liked Theme Restaurants that are eccentric.  I like tacky Theme Restaurants too.  More often than not, eccentric Theme Restaurants are located near tourist destinations, entertainment districts and amusement parks.  Most eccentric Theme Restaurants are designed to appeal to children of all ages.  Many eccentric Theme Restaurants offer a dining experience that is full of fun, adventure and excitement.

     Examples of eccentric Theme Restaurants cover a wide range of concepts.  For example, a Caribbean Pirate Theme Restaurant building would look like a full scale pirate ship and the dining room would be inside.  The wait staff would wear uniforms that look like Caribbean Pirate costumes.  The menu would be written with pirate lingo.  The cuisine would be a mixture of Caribbean Cuisine, seafood and pirate style specialties.  The food presentation style would be done with dramatic pirate flair.  Everything in this eccentric Theme Restaurant would revolve around a creating an exciting fun pirate style dining experience.  

     Here in Nevada, Theme Restaurants often have a Wild West Saloon Theme.  In Louisiana, a restaurant that specializes in Cajun cuisine and seafood might look like an old wooden bayou shack.  In St Louis, we used to dine at a steakhouse that was called Noah's Ark.  The building looked like Noah's Ark and the menu had a "two by two" theme.  
  
     One great example of an eccentric Theme Restaurant concept was found at the old Las Vegas Hilton, which recently was rebranded to a new company name.  The Vegas Hilton was famous for being the place where Elvis Presley resided in Las Vegas.  Frank Zappa used to joke about Elvis gluing aluminum foil over every window of his luxury suite and this was true.  All one had to do to see where Elvis was staying at the Hilton, was to look for the only room on the outside of the building that had foil covered windows!

    At the old Hilton Casino Resort, there was once a restaurant called Quark's.  The Star Trek corporate executives in all their global politically correct glory, decided that Las Vegas was too sinful of a location for Quark's or something to that effect, so they closed Quark's.  
     Honestly, Quarks was closed because the menu prices lacked value and customer interest never developed to a full extent.  I dined there once and the bartender told me that the clam chowder actually came out of a can.  That kind of killed it for me.  I recognized many tell tale operational problems that spelled doom and the overpriced cuisine topped the list.  
     Anyway, Quark's at the Hilton looked exactly like the stage set of "Quark's Bar" in the "Star Trek Deep Space Nine" TV series.  Occasionally an employee dressed in a realistic Star Trek alien costume.  The menu offered average run of the mill bar food items.  Considering the eccentric restaurant concept theme, the cuisine was kind of out of place.
     The bar at Quark's is what most customers wanted to experience.  Many of the signature cocktails were combined with special effects.  Some of the signature cocktails were presented with dry ice, to create a wild looking space age creepy chemical reaction fog look.  The entire bar and restaurant was like stepping into the future of inter-gallactic cross cultural dining experiences.  
     Quark's was a good example of an eccentric Theme Restaurant taken to an extreme.  Quark's was also an example of no matter how eccentric the restaurant concept theme may be, the restaurant still has to offer quality oriented dining value or a loyal clientele base will never be achieved.   

     Today's Warrior Sword Kabob Theme
     Barbarian food and the barbarian dining experience is a recurring Them Restaurant venue.  Nearly every culture around the globe has a history of warriors and conquest.  Throughout history, those cultures that were based purely on a peaceful existence, usually were looted, pillaged and vanquished by conquering warrior civilizations.  

     "Those who live by the sword, die by the sword."  The fearless warrior survives.  The culture with the most fearless warriors rules an empire of their own conquest.  It is no wonder that modern cultures that have a history of strong warriors are so highly revered.  
     The Samurai, Cossacks, Vandals, Huns, Vikings, Saxons, Romans, Persians, Spartans, Hawaiians, Rajput and the Zulu.  These are just a few historic warrior cultures that that ruled by sheer overwhelming might. 

     Ancient warrior and barbarian food is often pictured as being just crude fire roasted meats.  In many cases, this is far from the truth.  In some cases, this was true.  Of all ancient warrior cultures, the very worst cuisine of them all was Spartan.  There are many documented historical literary quotes made by ancient Spartan warriors that basically amounted to, "If one can survive the lousy food that is nearly inedible in Sparta, one can survive anything!"
  
     Sword food presentations bring out the recessed genetic warrior traits that originated in a hereditary gene pool from eons in the past.  There is something about food that is speared by a sword that inspires a feeling of bravado and heroics.  Sword food presentations are somewhat crude, by politically correct modern standards, but who cares about lightweight pencil neck geek criticisms anyway!  This is an almighty warrior food theme for customers that crave dining adventure!
  
     Restaurant sword food presentations are fun, adventurous and exciting.  This is what Theme Restaurant cuisine is all about.  Restaurants that have an eccentric barbarian, gothic or medieval theme, sometimes do offer a sword food presentation on the menu.  Some of these restaurants use real antique swords and some use Arabic style long sword kabob skewers, like the one in the photos above.

     An Arabic or Persian style long sword kabob skewer is the ultimate football tailgate party item.  A sword skewer is the ultimate statement of masculine bravado at a backyard chargrill party.  A sword skewer food presentation is barbaric heavy duty awesomeness that easily impresses guests!
     Arabic style sword skewers can be purchased at internet specialty shopping sites.  In Las Vegas, sword skewers can be found at Habib's Persian Cuisine-Mediterranean Market.  I purchased one long sword skewer at Habib's and I liked it so much, I returned to purchase two more.  
     Sword skewers are much more than a gimmick item.  Sword skewers represent the historical ages of warriors and conquest.  Sword skewers take an ordinary chargrilled and roasted meat combination entree to a whole new level! 

     Beer Pairing
     Nobody really knows where the Huns originated during the dark ages.  Some say that the Huns originated in Northeastern Europe or Russia, while others say that the Huns were a band of nomadic warriors that congregated around the all powerful Attila The Hun and they had no homeland at all.   
     The reason that relatively little was known about many dark age cultures, is because many of these cultures had no written language and orated lore was how a culture's history was preserved.  Many dark age cultures were described as being barbaric, by so called civilized cultures that came into power by the same means.  Civilized culture scribes and representatives of civilized dark age religious orders, basically only described pagan cultures as being barbaric hedonistic savages.  This actually was far from the truth, but because testimonials like this survived the dark ages, modern written history promotes these half truths as fact.
     
     Ever since communism began, the western world began restricting cultural information about countries like Russia.  At the peak of the Iron Curtain Era, many Americans could only describe Russia as being some kind of a communist enemy and knowledge of Russian culture was very limited.  Because of cold war era political propaganda and censorship in America, knowledge of Russian culture was mysterious.  The average American citizen knew very little about Russian cuisine and the vast variety of Russian culinary traditions.  For the most part, this continues to this day.
     For example, when beer history and tradition was discussed in the late 1900's, most folks in the western world automatically cited topic matter concerning English or German beer.  Common knowledge of Baltic region beer and Russian beer was limited, because not much beer was imported from this region at that time.  This was because information about cultures on the other side of the Berlin Wall was limited due to political darkening in the mid 1900's and importation of many eastern block products banned.

     During the first decade of this century, the western craft beer industry boomed with business, because of renewed customer interest in quality brews.  Western craft beer brewers expanded their beer selection to include traditional international beer brewing styles that were practically unheard of, which would also create customer interest.  Baltic region beer fit this bill of goods description to a T.   
     Baltic region beer was once only a topic that sophisticated beer enthusiasts discussed in the western world.  Now because of western craft breweries, nearly every beer drinker in the western world knows a little something about Baltic region beer.  Baltic region beer was once mysterious and now it has become a chic hot selling item. 

     I have recently written a few beer pairing articles that featured imported Russian beer and imported Baltic region beer.  It is always best to introduce the real deal genuine merchandise first, because it makes it easier to judge the quality of the Baltic style beer that craft beer breweries market.
   
     The Stone Brewing Company offers a full line of world class craft beer.  Every different type of beer that is made by the Stone Brewing Company usually receives high marks of excellence for quality and authenticity.  Stone makes extra hoppy western style IPA beer that appeals to modern beer consumers and they also make some nice traditional brews, like Russian Imperial Stout.
     The origin of Russian Imperial Stout began as a sweet malty heavy stout beer that was brewed in England during the late 1700's.  This type of sweet stout was exported to Russia to suit a request by the royal court of Catherine II.  Sometime after this historic importation event, local Baltic brewers started a tradition of making Imperial Stout that had sweet malty heavy characteristics.  Now the Stone brewery in California reproduced this same style of stout beer.  
     Stone Imperial IPA is a malty sweet stout that has a heavy gravity.  Tasteful restraint was exerted when flavoring this stout with hops.  When compared to imported Baltic Stouts that I have written about recently, the characteristics of Stone Imperial Stout is right on the money.  Tis sweet stout has subtle flavor overtones that make this beer suitable for pairing with desserts.  
     For a large sword kabob that has a wide variety of spice & herb flavors, a sweet Imperial Stout that can be slowly savored is a nice beer pairing choice.  The heavy nature of Imperial Stout also adds to the full tummy feeling that a big warrior style meal presents.
     Stone Imperial Stout is well worth recommending!  For more information about this brewery, follow this link:  
           
     This entire recipe yield 1 large sword kabob that can feed 4 guests!

     Southwestern Spice Marinated Ball Sirloin Steak Preparation:
     A Ball tip Sirloin Steak is not an official N.A.M.P. cut of beef.  Neither is a Delmonico Steak.  A Ball Tip Sirloin Steak is a regional cut of beef that is popular in midwestern states.  Most American butchers are familiar with this cut of beef and most grocery stores sell this cut by the name Ball Sirloin.  
     The Ball Tip Sirloin section is located near the Tri-Tip Sirloin section and this cut of beef is usually prepared like a Tr-Tip Steak.  A Ball Tip Sirloin Steak has very little fat marbling.  Marinating a Ball Tip Sirloin Steak ensure that the meat will be tender after cooking.  
     Select 2 Ball Tip Sirloin Steaks that weigh 12 to 14 ounces apiece.  
     Place 1/2 teaspoon of ancho chile powder in container that is just large enough to hold the two steaks.
     Add 1 teaspoon of New Mexico chile powder.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of ground chile pequin or cayenne pepper.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of Spanish Paprika.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of cumin.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of coriander.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of ground anatto.
     Add 1/4 teaspoon of onion powder.
     Add 1 pinch of garlic powder.
     Add 1 pinch of Mexican Oregano. 
     Add sea salt and black pepper.
     Add 1 tablespoon of water.
     Add 1 tablespoon of lime juice.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of white wine vinegar.
     Add 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil.
     Stir the ingredients together.
     Place the steaks in the marinade and coat each side.
     Cover the container and chill for at least 4 hours.  
     Flip the steaks in the marinade occasionally.
     
     Blueberry Sausage And Spicy Italian Sausage Preparation:
     Good Blueberry Sausages can be found at butcher shops.
     Select 1 Blueberry Flavor Bratwurst Style Sausage and 1 Spicy Italian Sausage that weigh about 6 to 8 ounces apiece.
     Place the sausages on a small roasting pan.
     Lightly brush the sausages with vegetable oil
     Roast the sausages in a 300º oven, till they are fully cooked and very lightly browned.
     Keep the sausages warm on a stove top.
      
     Curry Spice Rice:
     This recipe yields 4 to 6 portions!
     Place 2 1/4 cups of water in a sauce pot. 
     Add 2 cups of light chicken broth.
     Add 1 tablespoon of Yellow Madras Curry Powder.
     Add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric.
     Add 1/4 cup of minced onion.
     Add 1 teaspoon of garlic paste.
     Add sea salt and white pepper.
     Add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.
     Add 3 tablespoons of clarified unsalted butter.  (Ghee)
     Bring the liquid to a boil over medium high heat.
     Add 2 cups of long grain white rice.
     Return the liquid to a boil.
     Reduce the temperature to low heat.
     Cover the pot with a lid.
     Allow the rice to simmer and steam for 20 minutes.
     Keep the rice warm on a stove top.
     
     Za'atar Roasted Chicken Breasts:
     Select 2 large boneless skinned chicken breast filets that weigh 6 to 8 ounces apiece.
     Place the chicken breasts on a plate.
     Drizzle a little bit of olive oil over the chicken.
     Sprinkle a generous amount of za'atar spice mixture on the chicken.  (Za'Atar Spice Mix is available at Mediterranean markets.)
     Use your fingertips to rub the za'atar spice mix and olive oil onto the chicken.
     Place the chicken pieces on a wire screen roasting rack in a roasting pan.
     Sprinkle 1 pinch of sea salt over the chicken.
     Place the roasting pan into a 325º oven.
     Slowly roast the chicken, till it becomes fully cooked.
     Keep the Za'atar Chicken Breasts warm on a stove top.

     Chargrilling the Vegetables, Steaks and Sausages:
     All of these items can be grilled at the same time.
     Heat a large cast iron ribbed griddle or a char grill to a medium/medium high temperature.
     • Brush these vegetables with olive oil and grill them, till grill marks appear:
     - 3 or 4 sweet mini bell peppers
     - 2 slices of bermuda onion that are about 3/8" thick.
     Keep the vegetables warm.
     • Grill the roasted Blueberry Sausage and Spicy Italian Sausage, till grill marks appear and they are browned.
     Keep the sausages warm.
     • Remove the Ball Tip Sirloin Steaks from the marinade.
     Brush off any excess spices.
     Grill the steaks to the preferred state of doneness.  (A medium finish temperature is best for ball tip sirloin.)
     Keep the steaks warm.

     King's Hawaiian Rolls:
     King's Hawaiian Rolls have a unique sweet flavor and they are a favorite item here in the west coast region.  Since Las Vegas is the Ninth Hawaiian Island, I had to represent Hawaiian Warriors in today's recipe somehow.  King's Hawaiian Rolls were the ticket!
     For information about availability, follow this link:
     • King's Hawaiian
     Warm about 1 dozen King's Hawaiian Rolls in a 300º oven, shortly before serving.

     Warrior Sword Kabob Platter Presentation:
     This Warrior Sword Kabob Platter serves 4 guests!
     Select a 24" to 28" Sword Kabob Skewer.
     Use a boning knife to cut a slit through the center of each sausage and mini sweet pepper that will be placed on the sword skewer.  Cut a slit through the center of the width of each Za'Atar Chicken Breast and the Southwestern Spice Marinated Ball Tip Sirloin Steaks.  Slice each opening just wide enough for the sword skewer blade to pass through.
     Place the items on the sword skewer in a way that looks nice enough to appeal to a table full of warrior guests.
     Place the sword kabob on a baking pan and warm it in a 300º oven, while getting the presentation platter ready.  
     Select an oval serving platter that is about the the same length as the Sword Skewer.
     Mound at least 4 generous portions of the Curry Spice Rice along the length of the platter, as a bed for the kabob.
     Garnish the platter with these items:
     - Kings Hawaiian Bread Rolls
     - Heirloom Tomato Slices (Black Krim Tomato was used in the platter in the photos.)
     - The Grilled bermuda onion slices
     - Crown Precision Cut Lime Halves
     - Small bunches of cilantro sprigs
     Remove the warm Warrior Sword Skewer from the oven and place it on top of the rice on the platter.
   
     Warrior Sword Kabob Table Service Style
     When serving, remove the sword skewer.  Cut each sausage, chicken breast and steak in half.  Then divvy up the portions onto plates.  Cutting the meat portions with some kind of an assassin dagger would really be stylish!  ... Or! ... Allow each barbaric guest to stab each item on the sword kabob with a knife and cut a portion for themselves!  The service style can be entertaining too.

      When the dinner guests happen to be a little bit on the barbaric side, feed them food that they like!  A Warrior Sword Kabob will certainly suit their fancy.  Yum!