Saturday, July 08, 2006

A Kitty Hawk Experience To Remember

After our brief stop in Richmond for some Krispy Kreme's we hit the road for the OBX, (the Outer Banks). We had quite a way to go through Virginia, down to Norfolk via 460 and then down to Kitty Hawk by highway 168. The drive is nice but it was a might aggravating. Too many cameras and cops in Virginia and way too many places advertising peanuts for sale that were closed, (I really wanted some boiled peanuts!).

We pulled into Kitty Hawk in plenty of time for supper and I inquired about places to eat with the front desk staff. Now, after having been burnt by the desk staff at our hotel in Charlottesville, VA (concerning BBQ) I was somewhat leery of recommendations, but was willing to take one more chance. The nice lady at the desk recommended The Black Pelican for dinner and we decided to take her up on it. Boy, was that a good decision on our part. It is quite likely that they provided us with the best meal of the trip.

The Black Pelican has a history that's hard to beat. It was originally Life Station #6, then a telegraph office and now a restaurant that does a brisk business, even in the off season when we were there. After a short wait we got to our table and set about ordering. The downside for me was that there were no Root Beers on their drink menu and they only serve Pepsi products. So, I settled for Iced Tea and that was good enough for the meal that followed. I, like my wife ordered their Southern Fried Flounder and Shrimp. Unlike her I did not order the additional Crab Cake, (I will next, tho!). The flounder and the shrimp were just great! Fried to perfection, not greasy, moist and delectable! As you can see from the picture, that is one big piece of flounder and it was super good! The rice was pretty good and seasoned well. As for the beans...I didn't touch them. I don't like green beans and won't eat 'em, no matter what colour they are. They also do not serve bread or rolls with their meals. The Black Pelican serves up a warm basket of home made Pita, that is soft, warm and delicious!

The Crab Cakes add $6 to an entree and, after tasting my wife's...they're worth it. These Crab Cakes are all about the crab and not the filler. I am surprised they managed to get these cakes to hold together, given the huge amount of crab in them. At $6 these are a bargain! Make sure you add one to your order.

If you've got kids with you they'll be happy, too. Kids meals are served up on Black Pelican Frisbees and the kids get to take them after the meal. The usual kids fare is available so feeding a kid off the menu won't be an issue. We were far from the only family there.

The only drawbacks to the Pelican were that we ended up in a rather smoky area on the far side of the bar facing the kitchen entrance and they serve only Pepsi products and have no Root Beers. They do have a good selection of quality beers for those so inclined to imbibe, tho. And they didn't have any oysters on the 1/2 shell in the raw bar, being 2 days out of season (a rather lame excuse in my book).

If you're in Kitty Hawk you can do yourself a favour and stop in to the Black Pelican. It may not be the cheapest meal of the trip but it may well be the best you have! The menu is priced in what I would consider the medium range $14-22 entree's. We'll definitely be going back to the Black Pelican again. The food's worth the trip for any foodie!

Technorati Tags:
, , ,
, , ,

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Happy Independence Day!

Taking a momentary break from regaling you kind folks with my adventures in eating, Libertarian political blogging and Root Beer, I thought I'd wish you all a Happy Independence Day! Here at Mi Casa we are battling the elements as we head down to the wire to Dinner this evening. Like many folks I am planning to grill some meat this evening, (like last night and the night before...), and hopefully the rain will let up and not make the job a tough one. Unlike a lot of people we're having a traditional South African meat dish, Sosaties. A marinated lamb kabob that I started prepping a few days ago. (Yeah, I'll post the recipe below). My wife made homemade marshmallows (want that recipe? Let me know...they're gooood!) to go with the fresh, locally grown black raspberries I got yesterday and I am planning on setting off some major fireworks with my kids later. That's what it's all about!

Sosaties are a staple at South African braais and are quite possibly the best way to prepare lamb or mutton there is! My wife dislikes lamb in general but loves Sosaties, so that let's you know just how good these are! It takes a few days to prep for this and my recipe is in metric, but those are small hurdles to overcome. I got this recipe from a one off cook book issued by the South African government back in the late 70's, that was given to me when I lived in Pretoria, South Africa. When I lived in South Africa I usually bought my sosaties ready for the grill from my local butcher in Lynnwood, (a suburb of Pretoria..I lived in Lynnwood Glen, across from the Hyperama). South Africans have a love of braais (a grill out) that is almost an obsession and with food like sosaties it is easy to see why they love to grill out like they do! Enjoy this recipe, I know I do!



1 Clove Garlic
1 fat leg of mutton or lamb 1.5-2 kg
5 bruised orang, lemon or bay leaves
10 ml salt (2 tsp)
3 ml ground ginger (3/4 tsp)
3 ml pepper (3/4 tsp)
25 ml ground corriander (5 tsp)
125 ml milk
150 grams dried apricots

1. Rub an earthenware or glass bowl with the garlic.
2. Cut the meat into cubes large enough to skewer.
3. Mix the remaining ingredients and put the mixture in the bowl with the meat. Marinate overnight.
4. Prepare Sosatie Sauce (below).

Sosatie Sauce
4 Large Onions, Sliced
250 ml Water
1 Small Chili, seeded and chopped
25 ml Sugar (5 tsp)
25 ml Curry Powder (5 tsp) (I suggest S&B Brand)
3 ml Salt (3/4 tsp)
5 ml Turmeric (1 tsp)
25 ml apricot jam or 6 dried apricots, soaked and finely chopped (I prefer the dried apricots)
500 ml vinegar (I use Apple Cider vinegar)

Mix and boil all ingredients but the vinegar for 5 minutes. Add vinegar at the last minute. Remove from heat an let cool to room temp.

5. Mix the sauce with the meat and allow to marinate for 1-2 days.
6. Thread the pieces of meat, alternating fat and lean with apricots and pieces of onion on soaked skewers.
7. Grill slowly over charcoal (medium heat) until browned and cooked.
8. Thicken remaining sauce by adding flour and heating. Serve with the Sosaties, some Castle Lager and your favourite sides!
Technorati Tags:
, , , ,
, ,

A Snack Time Interlude

So, after our lunch at Michie Tavern we got out on the road and headed off towards the Outer Banks. Fortunately, we had already planned for a snack stop in Richmond. Having had the foresight to use the internet we had discovered that there was a Krispy Kreme Doughnuts not too far off the highway (OK, I would still have driven there even if it had been off the beaten, sue me). Once we determined it's exact location we headed off to find it.

Now for a question...why is that Krispy Kreme's are located where they are? In recent years I haven't seen one that is in an accessible and nice neighbourhood. That seems to run counter to most business models, I can think of. Odd, huh?

Anyway, we stopped in got our dozen doughnuts (2 Creme filled, 2 Custard filled, 2 Chocolate Glazed with Sprinkles and 6 Plain Glazed), a couple of milks for the kiddos and some of that nice hot Krispy Kreme Coffee. Man, am I glad they started producing their own brand of coffee. It gets a hearty thumbs up from me for being a darned good cuppa Joe! And, needless to say the Doughnuts were fresh and delicious.

After getting the kids situated and napkin'd we hit the road, heading towards what was going to be one of the best meals of our trip!

Technorati Tags:
, ,