Swedish Meatballs

It hasn’t been dinner as usual at the Our Life in Meals household recently. During the past few weeks, Jan sent me updates (and photos) of various barbecue eaten across the Southwestern United States as he fought forest fires in Texas and Arkansas (driving there and back and seeming to stop at every barbecue joint along the way). Needless to say, I’ve gone through a few rotisserie chickens and boxes of cereal (not for the same meal, of course) while he was gone.

And because I’d let several weeks go by without posting to Our Life in Meals, the harder it became to begin again. Even once Jan returned home, I felt that we had to prepare some amazing meal for me to break the ice.

But it turned out that a seemingly standard dinner might do the trick when Jan and I combined our heritage to prepare one of the best meals we’ve had in months. Continue reading

Barbecue Sauce Taste Test: Chicken

What to do with a pantry full of barbecue sauce and a refrigerator full of chicken? Conduct a barbecue-chicken taste test, of course. The other night, I came home to find Jan in the midst of executing long-considered plan. Over the course of a few shopping trips, he had gathered the “original” flavors of a handful of barbecue sauces, all the while considering what he would do with them. And after reading a recent Consumer Reports article on the best barbecue sauces, it was finally time for him to conduct a taste test of his own.

When I got home, Jan already had a few guy friends over mixing drinks and snacking on appetizers. He had laid out the barbecue sauces in a row, and poured a small amount of each into a bowl. The sauce lineup of original flavor in no particular order: Stubb’s, Jack Daniel’s, Famous Dave’s, KC Masterpiece, and Sweet Baby Ray’s. Continue reading