7 Oct 2015

Heinz - Cooking

I've been dreaming a dream...

The snow has freshly fallen; the air is cold and crisp. The sounds are sharp, the daylight is that much brighter off the snow, and the world seems clean. Through the layers of clothing the cold creeps in inching it way against the extra heat being made from the extra effort of walking around through the snow with the extra layers of clothing.

You smell a fire and the cooking of meat. The scent of fragrant smoked woods, well cared for meats, and the seasoning gently slips into the air. The closer you get to the houses in front of you the stronger the smell mixes with the winter air dancing to be at the fore of your senses.

When you’re finally a bit worn, tired from the haul in the snow with the cold finally touching you through all the layers of protection you reach the house. It’s inviting with warm light, filled with laughter of cheer, cheers, and marry play. You walk in you strip off the warm clothing letting the warm seep back into your core, a warm drink is passed to you and you join in all the fun.
Heinz - in it's place of birth

Food is laid out, hearty full of flavour and freshly smoked from outside. It too has made it in from the cold after spending hours cooking slowly in dancing smoke. Your drink is replaced something less hot; a red wine given time to breathe, a cold dark beer or cool stout, maybe something fruity and sweet.

Friends who are more like Family, comfortable inviting places to explore fantasy worlds or talk about personal utopias entrenched in this world. The room is filled with conversations of busy days and expressions of where and when folks will be next. The sharing of life when gathered, letting others slip into fond memories of your life.

Good drink, good food, good people, community.

Good life.

Sunday Wolf, Big Red, Sergeant and I with some help from Moby (who made a smell), Pale Rider (all dressed up in white, supervising) and Lady Bear (who made smoothies, hot chocolate, and brought out a snack) built a home for Heinz.

Heinz is a stainless steel smoker named after its creator; a very handy German immigrant named Heinz and former neighbor of the Dutchman. When I mean handy I express it that the man had many a working and well cared for welding devices, multiple workshops on his sole property… when you needed a new screw, he MADE you one – from SCRATCH!

Sunday - End of Day
Frame is done, roof almost finished
L-R: Red, Wolf and Dozer - Pic by Sergeant
(Absent: Pale Rider and Moby)
He passed away and I was offered his secondary smoker, the less fancy smoker. It was made of stainless steel, welded and riveted with the ability to swap out a short fire box for hot smoking or a long fire box for cold smoking aka preserving.

After a summer of working with Red to learn the art of smoking meat and building homemade DIY smokers from pots and gardening supplies, this smoker was perfect. This past Sunday, Red and I tested the smoker and found it to be a brilliant piece of work, ready and willing to smoke a Thanksgiving bird.

We brought Heinz up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit to push the smoker and cook off anything that needed to be burnt away. We tested out the new duel-probe thermometer I picked up from Capital Appliances. We tested out the woods, lump charcoal, and the short fire box.

Monday - Afterwork
Finished the roof
Had to leave, I was hunted by a creature
(Look at the left of the photo)
When Wolf showed up we three planed out the structure; Wolf with his experience and training, Red with his handy man point of view filling the bubble of collaboration with solutions and ideas, and me providing the vision of what the smoker needs. So we gathered some supplies, Sergeant and Pale Rider showed up and helped out. Folks gathered as it was being built; Tambourine (Red’s Wife), the wee Reds (their two children), Lady Bear, and the Dutchman.

After a full day of working we looked like this – Sergeant took the image above, and Pale Rider was finished supervising for the day so he's not in the image.

I’m proud of the work and I’m looking forward to making some great food this coming weekend.
Every so often I move forward. I’m getting closer to my dream.

Tuesday - Afterwork
Sides cut and mounted
Done before work (my second job)
The winter is coming, pushing away slowly the grip of summer and claiming autumns place in time. The air is chill, fresh from fall rain, smelling of colour as the trees change. The air is starting to show your breath as the trappings of hot days slips away.

Heinz is hot, the smoke boils out from its chimney carrying promises of well-cooked tender meat to lead a hearty rejuvenating meal. The wood shelter keeps the heat in and protects the lone pit worker standing close to the heat with a sweater and toque. A mug of hot coffee and a bottle of good bear sit next to each other next to the tools used to work the fire and move the meat.

Chairs sit in front of the shelter, one is covered in a blanket covering a book. The other chair welcomes visitors to join the pit worker for a moment as he labours. 

The day is getting darker faster but before the light is gone the pit worker will no longer hold vigil wrapped in blankets, reading books in the cool fall air warmed by Heinz.

He will be inside with friends and family.

His blanket will be folded ready to be taken outside, the book will be shelved, the coffee mug empty and washed, and the beer replaced for another.

He will be living a good life.

- Cheers