Eli’s Barbeque

This weekend I had the pleasure of making my first (and certainly not my last) visit to Eli’s Barbeque in Cincinnati.

It is a little bit off the beaten path and there is no sign for the restaurant. You just have to look for the massive smoker and a picture of a pig.

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Once inside, you get to peruse a large collection of records and choose your music. We had an early lunch and were the only ones there at that time, so the music selection was all for us! We must not look our age, because the employee asked if we knew how to change records on a record player… We enjoyed Michael Jackson and Johnny Cash while there.

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All this to say, that the atmosphere was so cool. And the food matched. It was delicious! I went with pulled pork (which you can get Pittsburgh style with cole slaw on the sandwich), mac n’ cheese, and jalapeno corn bread.

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If you need a unique joint to try some great barbeque, then Eli’s is your place.

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Kentucky Bourbon BBQ Chicken and Beer Cheese Pizza

Last week we attended the Olympics of Pizza, the Bluegrass Pizza Bakeoff where individuals and businesses competed on traditional and non-tradtional syles of pizza trying to win a spot in the pizza olympics in Italy. This inspired me to make my own version of a non-traditional pizza.

There are already places in Lexington that do a pizza that is representative of Kentucky: The Hot Brown Pizza. You can find this at Saul Good or The Grey Goose. I still wanted to do a Kentucky inspired pizza, so I thought about those things that are unique to Kentucky. Of course, I thought about tobacco, coal, and horses, but those things would not be very appetizing on a pizza.  =)

Bourbon? Beer cheese? Now these are ingredients I can get down with for this challenge. Because this was a different kind of challenge focused on creativity and not timing or surprise ingredients, these cooking directions will look a little different than my posts about mystery ingredient challenges.

First, before I left for work, I put chicken tenders into the crockpot and let them cook on low. This makes them super tender and easy to shred. 

When I came home, I started the homemade pizza sauce. I sauteed a finely chopped half an onion, Kentucky grown tomatoes (thanks mom and dad!), 2 garlic cloves, and a half teaspoon of oregano in olive oil. I let this simmer for about 20 minutes while I worked on other ingredients.

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I shredded the chicken and tossed it in about one cup of bourbon barbeque sauce. This is not my own recipe, but it is made from scratch. I used Four Roses bourbon because that is what we had on hand.We had it leftover from a wings dinner with friends, and if you’ve been following my blogs, you already know how I feel about repurposing leftovers.

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I did cheat a little and buy a refrigerated pizza crust. Had I made this on a weekend I may have made a pizza crust from scratch when I had time for the dough to rise. I used a new artisan whole wheat crust by Pillsbury.

After rolling out the crust, I pre-baked it for about 6 minutes. Then, I spread Kentucky beer cheese over the entire crust. Someday, I’ll make it to the Beer Cheese Festival.

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I used my new purple immersion blender to blend the pizza sauce to a smooth consistency.

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Last, spread the pizza sauce on top of the beer cheese, added the bourbon BBQ sauce chicken, green peppers, mushrooms, and mozzarella cheese. I popped this into the oven until the crust edges were golden brown, which took about another 8 minutes.

This is my non-traditional Bourbon Chicken and Beer Cheese Pizza!

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