Friends Of Australia Friday Shoulder Chops, Asparagus, eSteamed Broccoli, and Yellowtail Sauvignon Blanc

It’s once again an Australia Time Friday! It’s FRIDAY!!!!

The Tucker

Tonight was Shoulder Chops, pan fried in olive oil, with a dusting of salt, garlic granules, and a grind of pepper.

Sides were 2 steamed vegetables. Fresh Asparagus, and eSteamed Broccoli. Slathered with real butter.

OMG was that combination good! Yes, it is all so simple, yet it worked nicely. Also note that this is a low-carb dinner. Yes, we’re moving away from the “Storage Foods High Carb Prepper” stuff and back into Real Food with fresh vegetables and meats.

The Asparagus was more or less “Al Dente” while the broccoli was, as the spouse likes it, soft but not stinky. A VERY hard point to hit. If she would just let me make it Al Dente too, it would be much easier. I think there’s about 60 seconds during which it is ‘fork soft’ and not yet overcooked.

(Yesterday included a salad of colored carrot shreds, radish disks, purple cauliflower chips, olives, and Havarti cheese bits on a bed of fresh butter lettuce… Yes, green, orange, purple, white, red, black, yellow…) Topped with a Caesar Dressing. What can I say, this is what happens when I’m getting bored ;-)

But back at tonight…

Wine – A Yellow Tail Sauvignon Blanc

Unfortunately, earlier in the week, in a moment of weakness, I did-in the Australian Sangria. (Who knew? But it was quite good. Not too diluted with cheap juice as so many are… Details to be found here: well, maybe not so much details on the wine as on the effects ;-) But really, it is a nice strong wine base, Shiraz I think, with just enough fruit to have a Citrus note, but not make it silly sweet fruit punch with a bit of wine “somewhere”. Still, I’ll be having more of that. IF I can remember where I bought it. ;-)

But back at tonight, again:

This is a nice wine, but I must admit that my assessment of it will be colored by the fact I was eating aSalted Radishes as an appetizer. I like radishes, heavy with salt, for reasons nobody else seems to understand… but they do tend to blow out the taste buds. Hot sauce starts to taste more like ketchup. Pepper reminds you of allspice. That kind of thing.

A very pale yellow, that looks greenish yellow in the bottle as the glass is a bit greenish, it is a light flavor (especially in the context of radish relish tray… where it is more like water quenching fire… but I digress…)

Almost Germanic in it’s crispness. Sort of citrus overtones, I find myself wondering what a blend of their Sangria with this Sauvignon Blanc might do… It lists 7% of the contents as coming from New Zealand. Likely where they got cold season grapes that have that Germanic Zing to them.

Some astringency on the sides of the tongue give it that “watering mouth” feel, while there’s enough fruit in it to not leave you wondering what it might be. A touch of sugar, not enough to really taste sweet, but enough to not be bitter or so dry you look for a glass of ice water. Whoever blended this knows what they are doing.

Fruit flavor is there, but frankly, after radishes and garlic, it is my tongue that is inadequate to the task, not the wine. Nose is lightly fragrant, so I know it is in the bottle… Next time, “Wine FIRST, radishes last.”…

In Other News

I wish I had kept up on Australian news. I haven’t. I’m just ignoring the world and hoping it goes away.

China seems to have bought a large chunk of influence in New Zealand. Too bad. I liked New Zealand. It won’t be the same full of Cantonese speakers and Peking Duck.

China is putting the screws on Australia. I get that (thus this series…) and with PotuSINO Bidé[n] (the “n” is silent…) pResident in the White House, y’all are on your own. I get that. Just wish there was more I could do than eat your lamb and drink your wine. Please hang in there. Only one more year to the 2022 elections in the USA.

So hang in there. We’re pulling for you.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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18 Responses to Friends Of Australia Friday Shoulder Chops, Asparagus, eSteamed Broccoli, and Yellowtail Sauvignon Blanc

  1. Nancy & John Hultquist says:

    Central Washington (USA): A friend owns a small vineyard and winery. He’s got a few rows of Roussanne – – Swiss and Rhone white grape.
    In Australia: Yarra Valley makes wine from Roussanne, and plantings can also be found in the Hunter Valley, Margaret River, Rutherglen, McLaren Vale, Currency Creek, …

    If you can find it . . .

  2. beththeserf says:

    The dinner and wine sound A1, E.M. I cook with gas, but here in Viktoriastan that is being threatened, along with other things of western civilisation. Back to the dark ages …

    ‘Gas appliances including heaters, hot water services and cooktops would be phased out under a proposed moratorium on new gas connections to Victorian households to help the state achieve its 2030 target to cut carbon emissions by up to 50 per cent.

    Victorians are the nation’s biggest users of natural gas for heating, hot water and cooking due to the state’s historically cheap and plentiful supply piped in from Bass Strait since the 1970s.

    But the state may need to cut back on gas if it is to meet its climate goal, announced on Sunday, to reduce greenhouse pollution by 28 to 33 per cent of 2005 levels by 2025, and 45 to 50 per cent by 2030.’ (The Age Newspaper.)

  3. Graeme No.3 says:

    Nancy & John Hultquist
    Roussane has been grown in

  4. Graeme No.3 says:

    Australia, and particularly in Victoria since the 1850’s. Roussanne wasn’t popular because of its lower yield but lately it has become very much an “in thing”.
    It was introduced by the De Castella brows. who came from Switzerland but were familiar with Rhone wines, thus they suggested Roussanne, Viognier and Marsanne. The last was the preferred grape for over 100 years as a more reliable cropper. Marsanne wines are one of the few that benefit from years of ageing. I was lucky to share a 25 year old (from my cellar) with others recently.
    Fortunately I still have some younger ones ageing and hope to.last until they are ready.
    Roussanne is now fashionable and some from the Adelaide Hills is making waves. I won’t tell you my favourite brand as they are running out of stock (and they don’t export anyway).

  5. Graeme No.3 says:

    brows = brothers. I am having trouble with wordpress as it doesn’t show what I have typed until I post.

  6. Ossqss says:

    @Beth, how can they possibly make up for natural gas needs with the current state of energy supply? Impossible pipe dream it appears …….

  7. E.M.Smith says:

    @Graeme No.3:

    At the right side of the shrunken comment box is a feint gray bit. That’s a “grow box”. Put your mouse on it, click and drag, and that makes the comment box bigger (like it was before).

    Why someone at WordPress thought it was a good idea to force everyone to manually grow the comment box size is beyond me…


    I cook on anything, but prefer gas by a lot (though I have an electric range at present).

    I sometimes use one of my gas camping stoves for making dinner. It is a lot nicer for cooking. Finer heat control (not just 5 settings) plus instant response (no need to estimate heat arrival and departure lag times…)

    It is absolutely stupid to move people from gas appliances to electrical as long as you have gas..

    When, and it IS a when, the electricity to cook dinner is not available, make sure you have a gas camping stove around. There’s a flat Asian style (used in homes in Asia for dinner table cooking) that’s about $25 and works great. I’ve talked about it before. Small butane cans are about $2.50 each and sold at Smart & Final grocery store (i.e. not an exotic camping thing, but used in restaurants too).

    I liked mine so much, I bought a “Dual Fuel” version that runs on butane cans or propane for an added $8 (so $33 total). Now I have 2 of them ;-)

  8. E.M.Smith says:

    Well that’s a bit of good news…

    Australia dumped the BRI involvement and is thinking about taking back the Darwin port.

    China Shuts Down Business Talks with Australia After Belt and Road Withdrawal

    JOHN HAYWARD6 May 202151

    China on Thursday announced the suspension of economic dialogue with Australia amid deteriorating relations over human rights issues, Chinese espionage and political interference, and Australia’s withdrawal from two projects tied to China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

    France24 described China’s action as “a largely symbolic act of fury,” the latest step in a process of deteriorating relations that began with Australia’s insistence on an independent probe into the origins of the Wuhan coronavirus.

    China has been waging an increasingly intense trade war against Australia, coupled with diplomatic pressure and some very ugly propaganda, in an effort to bully Canberra out of demanding that coronavirus investigation.

    The origins of Australia’s showdown with China predate the coronavirus pandemic, however. Australia has been pushing back against what a top-secret 2018 Australian intelligence report characterized as “brazen and aggressive” Chinese interference in Australian politics.

    Disturbing links have emerged between Australian politicians and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), most spectacularly in the case of Senator Sam Dastyari, who resigned in 2017 amid a Chinese influence-buying scandal. Chinese agents allegedly tried recruiting other candidates to run for office in Australia and posed as journalists to conduct intelligence operations.

    Australia withdrew from two controversial BRI deals with China last month, calling them “inconsistent with Australia’s foreign policy or adverse to our foreign relations.” Beijing reacted with predictable fury
    , slamming the Australians for their “Cold War mentality,” the CCP’s all-purpose insult for everyone who grows uneasy about doing business with the brutal Chinese tyranny. The Chinese government threatened Australia with “serious consequences” for pulling out of the BRI agreements.

    Australia is also considering early termination of a state-owned Chinese company’s 99-year lease on the important port of Darwin,
    a deal the wisdom of which the U.S. government strongly questioned when it was signed in 2015. There is mounting unease in the Australian military about allowing a Chinese state firm to have such control over the port.

    China is acting like a spoiled despot and doing evil things. There is little reason to reward them for it. I may not be able to avoid ALL products made in China, but when I can find an alternative choice, I take it. What they did to Hong Kong shows they do not honor contracts and commitments. It also shows they do not love freedom nor value liberty. The CCP are not your friends. (The sooner the Chinese People are out from under the CCP thumb, the better. )

  9. Nancy & John Hultquist says:

    Thanks for a name for the mushed-up space to write a comment.
    The “grow-box” seems to have arrived at the same time the “downloads” went from a line at the bottom to a drop-down box at the top right. The latter is less offensive than the grow-box, but not a real improvement either.

  10. E.M.Smith says:

    @N&J H:

    Yeah, somebody at WordPress has a really bad case of “Dickwith Factor” and can’t stop screwing around with things. I see it a lot more on the “Blog Author / Management” side where they just keep moving my cheese…

  11. E.M.Smith says:


    Oh, and yes, the flavors did go rather well together.

    I was a little worried that “2 green vegetables” would be a bit too much green and similar, but in fact the flavors are very different and they complement each other nicely.

    We’re doing a bit of “Keto Kinda” where we’re going “low but not no” starches, and I’m trying to break out of my life long pattern of “A Protein, A Starch, and A Vegetable” and into “Protein & 2 Vegetables”… I think next time I may do cauliflower & asparagus just to get green and white ;-)

    I do like to have a mix of colors on the plate. The salad the day before was a wonderful riot of colors! And it tasted good too ;-)

    Today I made Turkey Burrito filling in the lamb chop pan. (Onion, ground turkey, salt, pepper, cumin, optional hot sauce / taco sauce, optional mushrooms). The “pan drippings” from the lamb added a bit ;-) I love cast iron for that….

    So “going forward” I’m buying a lot more saladings and non-starch vegetables. One really nice thing is I’m now keeping a tub of Fried Chicken in the fridge. ;-) So once a week I buy a bunch of chicken parts and fry them up, then cooled and into a reused 1/2 gallon ice cream plastic tub in the fridge. That way, as we want lunch or a snack, there’s a high protein one just waiting…

    They are floured, but only lightly. (One egg, splash of milk, whisk. Roll chicken in egg wash, set on plate to get sticky about 10 minutes, turn once. Place in flour & salt & pepper & poultry seasoning mix, roll, spoon to cover. Pick up and tap to knock off loose bits, onto another tray or plate to harden about another 10 minutes. Into wok or electric skillet with deep fry hot oil at 375 for 12 to 14 minutes, turning once near the middle. Remove to paper towel in another plate to rest… ) My preferred oil is 90% beef tallow 10% coconut, but over time schmaltz (chicken fat) accumulates and turns it somewhat yellow and even better ;-)

    Oddly, we get chicken at lower cost per lb. than fresh vegetables. Go figure…

    We did keto pre-pandemic and both felt better and lost excess poundage, so hoping the same this time. As of now I’m out of fresh starchy vegetables and bread ran out some weeks ago. So a bit at a time we’re getting there. I do still have 1 or 2 starch containing meals a week. Both to “use up” things like the 25 lbs of flour and beans I bought, and to make sure we don’t feel all deprived… So far it’s going well, though not yet noticing loose pants ;-)

    I’m going to try Roasted Carrots next. A “Jewish Mom” did that for the CEO of a company I worked at once ( I was installing something at his house while she was cooking dinner). Just stacked the carrot stick pieces sort of artfully on a cookie sheet and into the oven. Looked great when it came out. I think maybe butter or olive oil was applied…

  12. philjourdan says:

    eSteamed Broccoli? Can you explain is that a cooking method or a brand name?

  13. beththeserf says:

    I like mixed green vegetables. And yes, E.M. gas cooking too. Our government is stupid, wanting to deny us gas.They are attacking anything and everything positive in western society, including white independent thinkers, specifically white men, woke-ism rules.

  14. E.M.Smith says:

    It is a cooking method.

    Put broccoli flowers in the steamer basket. Put basket in pot. Bring to a low boil.

    So far, the same as regular steamed broccoli… Now, the hard part:

    Steamed Broccoli tends to either be a bit hard and crunch in the stems as it is removed early, or it is soggy and stinky as someone cooked it too long. For eSteamed Broccoli, you wait and just past the hard crunchy stem stage, when a fork just slides into it nicely, BUT before it is overcooked and starts to stink of sulpher, put it on the plate. By my estimation, that is about a 60 second window.

  15. E.M.Smith says:


    Well, at the risk of being called all the list of Horribles (that I’m already being called… it seems…):

    Frankly My Dear, I don’t give a damn if they want to attack me. I think I’m strong enough and, yes, superior enough, to withstand the snowflakes.

    Now that’s not a Racist!!!! nor Sexist!!! thing. I don’t care what race or sex or whatever a Snowflake is. They are, BY DEFINITION, weak and pathetic low performance creatures.

    So I just look at it and laugh at them. Pathetic things that they are.

    WHY do I feel this way?

    1) I’ve sparred for years against Black Belts of 2 different schools and held my own OK.
    2) I’ve been blown up, deaf and blind, and recovered. (Mostly, still a little deaf especially in HF).
    3) I was raised by my parents to be Independent and Capable (as I raised my kids…)
    4) Kuder Aptitude Tests and IQ tests have ranked me “way high”.
    5) I don’t shrink from hard things in fear. In fact, I have no innate fears. Not heights. Not falling. Nothing. I do have some learned fears, and that’s a good thing.
    6) I have learned to enjoy combat. Bring it.
    7) I have a moral center and a philosophical grounding.

    I mean, Hell!, I married the daughter of the W.W.II 101st Airborne Drill Sargent who was at Bastogne. If that didn’t scare the crap out of me, what can?

    So, from my POV, there’s a bunch of weak, pathetic, immoral, lying idiots who want to take ME on? Well that sounds like a PARTY to me. WORST thing possible is that I “go down” fighting for “Truth, Justice and the American Way”. That is a badge of honor I’d love to wear. Better than dying of boredom…

    The unfortunate bit is that I don’t “pick fights”. I’ll not “take it to them” unless they come at me first. It’s a morality limiter I have…

  16. beththeserf says:

    Good comment E.M.

  17. billinoz says:

    Some Aussie news : It’s an early cold Winter here in SA.. Almost got a frost last week.
    We are staying warm with our wood fired combustion heater – installed last Spring and now coming into it’s own. It warms the whole house ! :-)
    Here is SA the Covid is gone and life is basically now normal. There is the odd outbreak from Quarantine – especially of the Indian variant.. But all flights from India are stopped till the 15th and when they resume it will be a large quarantine facility outside Darwin..Nowhere else ! seems good to me..
    Stay well !

  18. philjourdan says:

    @EMS – Thanks! I do not mind crunchy stems so never had to try it. BUt yea, stinky broccoli is nt my favorite.

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