Home In Disarray

January 27, 2016

Brats with Bacon Braised Cabbage

\Brats with cabbage

This is a goody.  Simple and satisfying as a small meal, or add a side of some sort and serve it as a “normal” meal.

Makes 5 servings, takes 45 minutes


  • Pack of 5 Trader Joes uncooked bratwursts
  • 4 strips thick cut bacon, cut into matchsticks
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 10 oz shredded cabbage
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 1.5 cups chicken stock
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • In a large skillet, crisp your bacon. Allow it to cook over medium heat until it is starting to crisp up but isn’t destroyed.
  • Remove the bacon to a plate and set aside, but leave the fat behind. Add your brats and brown them on each side. Once you’re satisfied with their color, add the bacon back to the pan and remove the brats. Add your cabbage, garlic powder, and red pepper flakes.
  • Saute for a few minutes until the cabbage begins cooking down. Add your ACV and chicken stock, plus a large pinch of salt and allow to come to a simmer, still over medium heat.
  • Add your brats back to the pan(nestled into the cabbage) and allow to simmer gently for 10-20 minutes until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  • Taste a little of the cabbage and adjust the seasonings.
  • To serve, place 1/5 of cabbage mixture on a plate and top with one bratwurst.Brats with cabbage
January 15, 2016

Laurel’s Perfect Manhattan

Perfect Manhattan

I have shared a Manhattan recipe before, and it’s a great recipe.  But it is also a few years old, and as I’ve aged, my tastes and understanding of cocktails have changed.  In general, I now tend to prefer cocktails that are less sweet.  The “perfect” Manhattan reflects that.  The perfect Manhattan replaces half of the sweet vermouth with dry vermouth.  It’s a simple substitution, but it makes the difference between a cocktail that coats your mouth, and one that’s easy to sip without feeling icky.

Perfect Manhattan

Perfect Manhattan (makes 2)


  • 6 booze soaked cherries
  • 1/2 oz cherry-soaked whiskey (or whatever your cherries are packed in)
  • 4 oz rye, bourbon or other American whiskey (I prefer rye, Craig prefers Jack Daniels)
  • 1 oz sweet vermouth
  • 1  oz dry vermouth
  • 4-6 dashes bitters
  • Ice cubes


  • Get out 2 coupe, rocks, or martini glasses
  • Prepare your garnish. Spear 3 cherries on a cocktail stick.  Place them into your glasses and set aside.
  • Start building your cocktail in a sturdy glass.  Combine the cherry liquid, whiskey, vermouths, and bitters in the glass. If I’m cooking around making cocktails, this step often takes a few minutes, making adding the ice at the end especially important.
  • Add ice until the level of the ice reaches just past the top of the liquid.
  • Stir.  If you have one of those fancy cocktail spoons, use that (I have been meaning to add one to my amazon cart for quite some time.)
  • The goal with the stirring is to make the liquor mixture cold.  Once it feels very cold on the outside of the glass, pop a hawthorne strainer on your glass and strain the Manhattan into your prepared glasses.
  • Enjoy.


This recipe is so easy to scale.  It’s essentially 2 parts whiskey, .5 parts each sweet and dry vermouth, and a couple dashes of bitters, plus some cherries.

Posted in: Cocktails, Drinks