Friday, October 30, 2015

Project Date Night: October

Did you know that October has more rainy days on average than any other month of the year? At least that's what M tells me. It feels true, regardless. Rainy, chilly weather makes me want to stay in and stay warm, so this month's Project Date Night was perfect!

The original plan was to learn to ballroom dance in our living room, inspired by watching the movie, "Shall We Dance" last year. But, as I started compiling a YouTube playlist of instructional videos, I came across quite a few line dancing videos and I thought, "Hmmm, that seems like fun," so the Shall We [Line] Dance date night was born.

I went all country and did...
  • BBQ pork ribs (with homemade BBQ sauce, recipe below!)
  • Corn muffins (box mix - I splurged, although I do have a GF cornbread muffin recipe in the works)
  • Baked (sweet) potatoes (pretty plain jane)
  • Sweet tea (actually a mix of black tea and leftover mildly sweet hibiscus sun tea I had made the day before)
  • I was planning to do southern style greens, but just didn't feel like it by the time date night rolled around, so we skipped it.
  • Gingersnap cookies (gluten free and actually just as good as the wheat based gingersnaps I grew up baking. SO good. Recipe coming soon. ish.)

We watched the instructional videos while eating our country style dinner, then proceeded to [try to] cut a rug.

Honestly, we aren't very good at dancing. At all. Like, take a normal person's rhythm and split that between the two of us and that's about right. But, we got our heart rates up and had a few laughs and "learned" how to do the Two Step, the Cowboy Boogie, and the Canadian Stomp. We attempted them anyway, but finally gave up. See, this is why we don't dance in public. Because we're really bad at it. But at least we're bad at it together!

You can check out our YouTube Shall We [Line] Dance playlist here.

We're not going to be winning any dance competitions any time soon, and you can forget about us 'showing off' for friends - not gonna happen - but we will continue to be silly together and try new things. 'Cuz that's how we cowboy boogie, kids.

Note on the BBQ - I like it thick, sweet and tangy with just barely any heat. M tends to add hot sauce to his dish since he likes it spicy. If you can relate to him, just up the hot sauce, tasting as you go until you find the right level of heat for your tastebuds. Enjoy!

Easy Peasy BBQ Sauce
by Raye
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: none
Keywords: no-cook condiment dairy-free egg-free gluten-free grain-free nut-free refined sugar free soy-free vegetarian
Ingredients (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 c. tomato paste
  • 1/2 c. water
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp granulated onion
  • 1/4 c. molasses
  • 1-2 Tbsp honey (preferably raw)
  • 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar (preferably raw, I like Bragg's brand)
  • 1 Tbsp prepared Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp fish sauce, optional (I like Red Boat brand)
  • 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp cayenne pepper hot sauce (I like Frank's Red Hot)
It can't get much easier than this...
  • Measure tomato paste, water, granulated garlic, granulated onion, molasses, 1 Tbsp of the honey, the apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, fish sauce (if using), sea salt and hot sauce into a small mixing bowl. Whisk until combined.
  • Taste and add another Tbsp honey and more hot sauce if desired. Transfer to a storage jar.
  • Or, measure all ingredients into a 2 cup (1 pint) wide mouth canning jar and use an immersion blender to mix it together.
  • Cap tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
  • Note about fish sauce: Fish sauce is a lactofermented Asian condiment and is used to bump up the umami (meaty flavor) in the BBQ sauce. It's good either with or without it, so up to you.
  • Note about storage: The sauce gets thicker as it sits in the fridge. Stir before serving and add a tablespoon or so of water if needed to thin out to your preferred consistency.
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