Saddle Up Saloon; Recipe Rustlin’ Returns

Written by D. Avery @shiftnshake

       Read my writing and see my books at

September 13, 2020

Saddle Up Saloon

“Here ya are, Kid. Out unner the offshoot Poet Tree back a the saloon.”

“Hey Pal. Yep, jist fixed mysef some breakfast, figgered I’d eat it out here, injoy the beautiful mornin’.”

“Whut is thet yer eatin’?”

“Ya oughtta know, Pal. ‘Member we grilled at the fire last night, had a bunch a extra ears a corn? An’ I roasted them colored sweet peppers while the coals was still hot? That’s all this is, roast corn, shaved off the cob a course, an’ the roast peppers diced an’ stirred t’gether with a bit a green pepper Cholula hot sauce.”

“Ya ain’t much of a cook, are ya Kid?”

“Try it… eh? It’s like eatin’ a late summer evenin’— fer breakfast. Simple fresh ingredients is savory, Pal.”

“It’s simply weird, Kid, but if ya got some more, I’d have some.”

“Nope, sorry, jist put the rest a the roasted corn an’ peppers in the freezer. Puttin’ things by fer winter.”

“Whoa, stop. Back up. We got a freezer? At the saloon or at the ranch?”

“Either, both; why wouldn’t we? Embrace our fictional status, Pal. Jist ‘cause we ride hosses doesn’t mean we cain’t have modern conveniences. Unless ya’d have me cannin’.”

“No, I reckon havin’ a freezer’s a good thing, ‘cause I been puttin’ things by too. Used up all them cucumbers from Shorty’s garden ta make freezer pickles. They’s real easy ta make an’ ya kin keep these pickles a long time in the freezer, lessen ya eat ‘em fresh first.”

“How d’ya make ‘em?”

“Well let’s say ya have

            2 quarts thinly sliced unpeeled cukes

            Mix the cukes with 2 tablespoons non-iodized salt and

            2 thinly sliced medium sized onions

            Let thet mixture stand fer two hours.”

“Stand? Or set? And Pal, have ya ever seen iodized salt? Does non-iodized salt git iodized or does iodized salt git undone ta become non-iodized? D’ya reckon this a kosher question?”

“It’s an annoyin’ question, Kid, shush. ‘Cause while thet cuke an’ salt an’ onion mix is asettin’ ya gotta be makin’ the syrup:

            1.5 cups a sugar

            0.5 cups a white vinegar

 Ya boil the sugar an’ vinegar only jist ‘til the sugar is melted good, then remove it from the heat, when it’s cool git it cold in the refrigerator. While thet’s happenin’, drain the cucumber an’ onion mix, squeeze out all the water. Then ya kin pack it in plastic containers, pour the cold syrup over it, mix it up, an’ it keeps fer a long time in the freezer. But they’s real good fresh thet same day an’ beyond.”

“Sounds easy, Pal. Where’d ya git that recipe?”

“Druther not say, Kid, it’d jist git ya riled up. But this all makes ya think, don’t it?”

“Donuts? Yum. But it has me thinkin’ back almost four months ago when we had folks sharin’ recipes here at the Saloon.”

“Yep, thet was our first Recipe Rustlin’ feature. Folks contributed fav’rite recipes in the comments. Thet certainly weren’t the first time recipes been pervided at Carrot Ranch though. Shorty’s all ‘bout sharin’ her buckaroo cook smarts.”

recipes-from-the-ranch-e1400277678197“Yep, but ain’t it funny how she cain’t seem ta keep her stories outta her cookin’?”

“Reckon stories is whut makes real food real food Kid. Thet corn an’ pepper thing ya jist ate right in front a me without sharin’ was talkin’ ta ya ‘bout summer an’ good times by the fire. A pickle recipe got from somebody’s father gits all kinds a stories goin’. Jist the fact thet we’re puttin’ food by is tellin’ a story a fall an’ comin’ winter.”

“Pal, I wunder if other folks is puttin’ food by fer winter?”

“Kid, some a the ranch hands is jist springin’ inta summer. But I smell whut yer stirrin’. Yer thinkin’ folks kin share recipes agin, mebbe some’s thet’s ‘bout puttin’ food by, or mebbe jist ‘bout usin’ fresh garden ingredients.”

“Yep, but hopin’ mebbe a wee bit a story, least ways mebbe how they come by the recipe they’s sharin’.”

sour and sweet

memories that last

stories brined

“Next week, the 21st, will be anuther Karaoke event, where ya improve on a song ya know by changin’ the lyrics. See the first one ta gain some insight:

If ya have a song in advance a September 19 ya kin send it ahead ta be featured on the Saloon stage. (  

An’ guess whut’s happenin’ on the 28? Well, we don’t know either, so yer guess is as good as ours, but if ya wanna be featured, reach out ta us via .

We do know thet the whole month a October the Saddle Up Saloon’ll be where ta git caught up an’ catch commentary on the 4th Carrot Ranch Rodeo.”

If asked, Pal & Kid will deny that they spill from the pen of D. Avery. They claim to be free ranging characters who live and work at Carrot Ranch and now serve up something more or less fresh every Monday at the Saddle Up Saloon. If you or your characters are interested in saddling up for a wild ride as a saloon guest, contact them via

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  1. D. Avery @shiftnshake

    There’s likely going to be a frost tonight so I’ve just collected all the neighborhood basil for the final big batch of pesto for our freezers as well as fresh. I use walnuts as they are cheaper than pine nuts and strongly believe there’s no such thing as too much garlic.
    This summer it was a lot of walk-by stir fry. If I walked by something edible and ripe I’d throw it all in a pan and there was dinner; add an egg and there was breakfast. Always add cilantro. That’s my recipe share.
    Finally had fresh local corn on the cob recently. I always cook way more than we’ll eat so I can shave it off the leftover cobs for freezing, salsa, or adding to the walk-by stir fry. The best way to cook corn on the cob is in the husk right over hot coals in the outside fire. Easy and tasty.
    Cooler fall weather has finally motivated me to make big batches of homemade baked beans too. When I was a kid everyone still used bean pots but I like the convenience of a crockpot. I added leftover roast corn and roast peppers to the last batch. Yum.
    Ok, off to the pesto making.

    • Charli Mills

      No such thing as too much garlic! My sew cranky neighbor gave me a taste of her oregano pesto and it was soo good! I finally got to harvest my carrots and wanted to use the beautiful tops and I made carrot-top pesto and used macadamia nuts. One batch went into the freezer and the rest went camping and ended up on a walk by stir fry that included some ingredients caught in my daughter’s garden as well as mine plus smoked fish from the Peterson’s who boat by. For winter, though, I love to freeze batches of peach-pie filling cause it adds summer sunshine to winter stew!

      • D. Avery @shiftnshake

        Whoa. Stop. back up, there Boss. Pesto with other than basil? Where have I been all my life?

  2. writefunnydramatrue

    I like the cowboy genre crossover in the story 🙂

  3. Norah

    I love corn on the cob cooked in the husk over the coals, with lashing of butter, the way my dad used to do it when we lived on the farm. We had a wood stove on the farm, and again when we moved to suburbia. I would have been a teenager before my parents got a gas stove, but I’m thinking mainly of my days on the farm that lasted until I was six. Mum used to make the most delicious fruit buns and, while they were still warm, she’d top them with a sugary glaze. Yum. As well as the corn over the fire, toast was always cooked in the flames too. We mustn’t have had electricity on the farm. Water was heated in a pot on the stove and Dad lit the kerosine lamps at night. Interesting (to me anyway) the memories your cooking post has brought to simmer. I don’t remember much else about foods we ate at the time. Corn, toast and buns are the most memorable. But we kids always loved to lick the beater (hand-held) or spoons. We never got sick and I’ve lived to tell the story. Nowadays there are all sorts of warnings about raw eggs. Times change. Thanks for stirring up my memories.

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      We’re peas of a pod, Buddy. Glad to give you some warm memories. Food will do that.

      • Norah

        It will. 🙂

    • Charli Mills

      What a great phrase I’m going to start using, Norah — lashing of butter! And a lovely memory from the farm, too with corn on the cob cooked over the coals. We cooked a lot over an open fire in my dad’s logging camps and I love the taste of woodsmoked or woodstove cooked food. I remember the joy of licking the beaters or spatula. My kids always nipped cookie dough, too without harm. I think vanilla and sugar nuetralizes bacteria in raw eggs. You lived like a cowgirl!

      • Norah

        I did in my early days and am still drawn to country in equal measure to the sea, where I spent most of my childhood, but I’ve been a city girl most of my adult life. Lashings of butter is probably a cliche now that you mention it. 🙂

  4. Charli Mills

    I love building a camp kitchen and cooking outdoors. One-pot or one-skillet recipes work great, like campfire fajitas or ranch beans. Foil potatoes are fun, too. Dice potatoes and other walk-by veggies on hand or in season. Make a foil packet to contain potatoes and veg. Add butter and season with salt, pepper, garlic, onion (or chives), rosemary, and smoked paprika. Fold up the four sides of the foil around the potatoes and seal. Place on coals, the BBQ grill or oven, and bake for 20 minutes or until tender. We had a neighbor who would fix these on the grill and each family member could add their own hot sauce. And they had an impressive collection of sauces!

  5. Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)

    If it’s camping recipes we’re doing, ours were generally from a tin! But it was kind of exciting as a young kid that we ate dessert first – probably tinned fruit – while the potatoes were boiling. And it was usually raining.

    • D. Avery @shiftnshake

      It’s ending up campish. That’s how I roll in the summer, but it has also been nice to have so much fresh and local food. My brother has hens. I don’t think I can ever eat a grocery store egg again.

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