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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Monday, September 03, 2007

A Food Filled Labour Day Weekend 2007

Waterside Entertainment
Sept. 1, 2007

As many of you already know we go to as many ribfests as possible. Canada's largest ribfest is held in Spencer Smith Park, Burlington, Ontario on the Labour Day Weekend. This is a family event for us each year. We left Thursday night so we could spend a whole day with our grandbaby while her Dad was at work and her Mom was getting her classroom ready for the new school year. That meant we got to spoil her a lot. In the early afternoon we took her shopping at IKEA. We saw a kitchen in their catalogue we liked so was considering it for our remodel. Then we stopped at Fortino's to get the ingredients for a homecooked dinner to surprise them when they got home. We bought rib steaks, baking potatoes, salad fixing and a few other goodies for a nice barbeque. Our grandbaby is now 8 months old and eats directly from her parents plates, steak included! The following morning our mouths were already watering in anticipation of sights and smells of the ribfest.

The smell of the ribfest hits you well before entering the enclosed area. The smokey aroma from wood fires intertwines with the sweet tang of sauces and rubs. From there it is sensory overload! The lines are long, the sun is hot and the people are friendly. The smells continue to entice along with the sights and sounds. The anticipation builds as you watch the ribbers in action. The ribs all look wonderful promising a lip smacking, finger licking culinary delight!

There were 16 ribbers at this year's ribfest:
Camp 31
Gator BBQ
Uncle Sam's BBQ
Bibb's BBQ
Turtle Jack's
Carolina Rub King
Hog's Gone Wild
Kentucky Smokehouse
Memphis BBQ
Billy Bones BBQ
Blazin BBQ
Howling Coyote BBQ
Jack on the Bone
Bone Daddy's
Silver Bullet
Toney Romas

Some ribbers were barbequing chicken and beef ribs this year so of course we just had to get some of those. Saturday was people's choice voting so some of the ribbers decorated their take-out packages. As per our normal quest at ribfests each family member gets $20 from my husband to go off, stand in line and bring back a rack of ribs except the designated ones to get corn, a blooming onion, fried vegetables and beverages. I had to get the blooming onion and fried vegetables this year.

We settled around a picnic table in the shade to enjoy six full racks of ribs from various ribbers, a blooming onion platter with fried vegetables and all dressed fried potatoes. With the exception of our grandbaby and daughter-in-law who expecting, the drink of choice was beer. The little one happy munched with as much gusto as the rest of us. Afterwards we chose the ribs we liked best and filled in our ballots. Camp31, Bone Daddy's and Hog's Gone Wild were our favourites. Sufficiently stuffed we packed up the left overs then headed to the ice cream stand. With treats in hand, we wandered through the rest of the ribbers and booths then strolled leisurely along the waterfront.

Part of the fun is finding sauces that made the "best of the previous year" all for sale for $6 each or 2 for $10. What we normally do is bring a list of the sauces that won best last year and we liked the ribs as well as picking up a bottle or two of sauce from the favourite ribbers of this year. I picked up two bottles of sauce from Uncle Sam's Albuquerque Style BBQ Sauce while my husband picked up Rib Rub from Blazin BBQ. He really liked the flavour of those ribs! Unfortunately their sauce is not available yet but should be soon. I was disappointed that Smokin' Joes wasn't there as I had wanted to buy more of their sauce. I was also disappointed that the Jet Set Spice Co. booth wasn't there either.

Our son and daughter-in-law took us to Whole Foods Markets in Oakville, Ontario. This supermarket specializes in organic and fair trade foods. The market is huge, a visual culinary delight! I could have stayed there for a few hours slowly going up and down the isles seeing many things that I can't easily get here. I bought Dabur Red Rose Water, Turtle Reef Alca Hawaiian Sea Salt and Organic GD Herbes de Provence. Unfortunately I was not able to buy much in the way of perishables because we had plans to stop at the Charity Casino in Brantford on the way home but the next trip I will be stocking up on a few items.

We arrived home in the early Monday morning hours yet I was up by 6:30 am ready to get the car unpacked and laundry done so I could get a bit of canning done. When I canned the caramelized onions, the canner had lost almost all of the water even though it had maintained pressure. While I hadn't noticed it in the rush to get ready to leave, I discovered the canner bottom had just slightly warped. Now I'm likely the only one who would have noticed this but it was cause for concern so I put the canner through the paces yesterday canning water. This is a standard canner test. Then as if we had not had enough ribs over the weekend, I put a rack of ribs on the grill for dinner much to my husband's delight.

1 food lovers commented:

Laura Lohr : My Beautiful Life said...

I *love* Whole Foods. I could wander the aisles forever, just browsing. The first time I went, I went to the one in NYC and it is just amazing!