Bushie Trip - July 2003

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Bushie
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2003/08/02 21:16:16 (permalink)

Bushie Trip - July 2003

Just got back today. We visited with much family, many friends, and we also met some new friends on the way.

Because we stayed with family on most of the trip, we ate many great meals cooked at their homes. However, we sampled some wonderful Roadfood, both new and old standbys. I'll be posting stories and pictures over the course of this coming week.

Taking Lovie's advice, I stayed away from email this last week. I also was unable to even connect to Roadfood while on the road, apparently due to limitations of my notebook computer. (I knew this would be the case, which is why I said my "goodbyes" before I left.)

I have some interesting pictures to share of The Mayor, Sundancer, and Pogophiles, and of course, some food shots.

More to follow...
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    BigGlenn
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/02 21:39:05 (permalink)
    Waiting with Bad, I mean Baited Breath........LOL
    #2
    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/03 01:01:36 (permalink)
    Bushie, can't wait to hear all about it!!
    #3
    Lone Star
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/03 01:07:25 (permalink)
    I want to hear all the details about the home-cooked meals too!
    #4
    Liketoeat
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/03 11:38:10 (permalink)
    Bushie, know you all had a great trip from reading just the little synopsis you gave above. Also can't wait to hear all about it and to see the pictures. Some good, informative, entertaining reading and viewing to look forward to during this week.
    #5
    mayor al
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/03 12:38:40 (permalink)
    Group-
    Whatever he tells you..I didn't do it, wasn't there[|)], Have witnesses to counter any alegations,....and flat out deny it !!!

    Oh, He says nice things???

    Well then, Never Mind!
    #6
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/03 17:13:07 (permalink)
    On the first day drive to Springfield, MO, I had planned to stop in Eufaula, OK and eat lunch at JM's Restaurant , a great place I found last year. However, a couple of days before we left, a friend told me about the town of Krebs, just outside of McAlester.

    I hadn't known this, but a large number of Italian immigrants settled in the area in the early 1900's. So, the town of Krebs is known for great Italian food. My friend recommended Pete's Place , which wasn't open for lunch, so we went back out to the highway (69 Bypass) and ate at Gia Como's. I can't count the number of times I've driven by this place and never gave it a second thought (never dreaming that I would find good Italian food in central Oklahoma).

    It opened in the mid-1950's, and some of the decor still looks original. They offered many dishes, but I ordered the menu item named "Italian Dinner". (I figured you couldn't get more basic than that! ) It was spaghetti, meatballs, ravioli, salad, bread, with cheese and peppers as appetizers. Everything was freshly made and served family-style. I really liked the homemade sauce, and the ravioli was more like meat-filled dumplings.

    I really enjoyed it. The only drawback was that after eating a big carb-filled meal like that, I still had a 5-hour drive ahead of me. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

    I still want to try Pete's Place. Sounds like a good excuse for a fishing trip to Lake Eufaula...
    #7
    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/03 17:50:46 (permalink)
    OK, first day sounds good. Can't wait for the next chapter. C'mon, Bushie, gotta' hear more!
    #8
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 07:52:16 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by CheeseWit

    OK, first day sounds good. Can't wait for the next chapter. C'mon, Bushie, gotta' hear more!


    Sorry about the delay. I really am not intending to drag this out. After two weeks away, I've just got lots of catching up to do. I'm glad you're interested, though!
    #9
    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 08:02:45 (permalink)
    This is like the old serials they showed in theaters. Gotta' come back next Saturday kids for more adventures of Buck Rogers, er, Bushie!
    #10
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 08:32:29 (permalink)
    Springfield, MO. My family and friends.

    My first meal when I visit Springfield is always at the Mexican Villa. This place opened in 1951 and is still going strong. Now, you'll get lots of negative reviews from people who think they know good "Mexican" food, but this is just good food made with quality stuff; similar to Tex-Mex but with its own twist.

    The dish I always get is the Burrito Enchilada-Style. We used to order this before it was even on the menu, and now it's their best-selling item. It's a burrito made with beans, meat, white cheese, and their own burrito sauce. Topped with enchilada sauce and more cheese, then stuck under a broiler to melt the cheese. Topped with lettuce and tomato before serving.

    Their sauce is a fiery red concoction that I adore, and lots of it gets put on my burrito.

    I'm just learning to use my digital camera, so the shots I took of the food didn't turn out well, but here's one that's a gift for signman, who loves old neon signs:




    Other places I ate in Springfield:

    Pizza House: I've talked about this place before. Great thin-crust St. Louis-style pizza. Opened in 1958. Here's the sausage pizza I had this time:




    Aunt Martha's Pancake House: Opened in 1959, and is still the best breakfast in Springfield. Great variety of pancakes and good country cookin'. I had the Southern Cornmeal Pancakes with corned beef hash, eggs over medium, and real hash browns (not "breakfast potatoes").

    Arris Pizza: Another St. Louis-style pizza that is fabulous.

    St. George's Donuts: A fairly new place with fantastic glazed donuts. On Sundays, they open early and make a bunch, but I found out they only sell until they run out that day. I got there at just a little after 7:00 am and ordered a dozen. They had 9 glazed donuts left. I settled for those 9 and a few caramel rolls to take home, but quietly snuck out while the guy who just walked in behind me was told they didn't have any more.

    Jade East: One of the specialty foods of Springfield is Cashew Chicken, "invented" in the 1950's by a chef at the now-defunct Leong's Tea House. It's pieces of white chicken breaded and deep-fried, topped with oyster sauce, chopped green onions, and cashews. Although I'm sure everyone has seen something similar, this is different and the guy at Leong's is credited with it.

    This is the reason Springfield is known for having so many Chinese restaurants. The whole city is crazy for this stuff, and you can get it at small shops and big restaurants all over town. Traditionally served with fried rice and an egg roll. I couldn't really pick the best place for this, but Jade East was convenient.

    Beyond one trip to Steak n' Shake, the rest of the meals in Springfield we cooked. Lone Star, I'll do a post on some of that later today, since you were kind enough to ask.

    Now, back to work...

    #11
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 08:36:41 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by CheeseWit

    This is like the old serials they showed in theaters. Gotta' come back next Saturday kids for more adventures of Buck Rogers, er, Bushie!


    Same bat-time, same bat-channel...
    #12
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 08:47:21 (permalink)
    Bushie: Nice write up. Out of all the ones you mentioned, The Mexican Villa really appeals to me and then the Chinese.

    Can't wait to hear about your home cooked meals.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
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    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 09:02:20 (permalink)
    Bushie: Good travelogue thus far. I can picture you with the slide projector remote clicking on each pic as you describe your meal. Truthfully, the trip sounds great. Like Sundancer 7, I like the mexican place you described. And yes, I can't wait for those home cooked meal reviews. You can say nice things here and send me your true thoughts in an email...just kidding!!
    #14
    mayor al
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 11:20:36 (permalink)
    It seems like just yesterday that we would have an evening with my grandfather and his Slide projector...and a tackle box full of metal 'magazines' of 35mm slides usually of the most recent trip across the country.This was in the Pre-Carousel days...The slides would be hand fed into and out of the projector using a metal sliding device...my job. While grandfather would refer to his notes and clue me as to when to change the slide.
    This modern version has Bushie playing the role of grand father!!!
    #15
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 17:53:19 (permalink)
    Y'all are too kind.

    I hope I haven't gotten your hopes up about the "wonderful" meals we cooked. To me, they were wonderful, but they may come off as rather plain to many. I love to cook, as do many in my extended family, but it's all just something we enjoy. I don't claim to be a great cook and have certainly never had any training.

    For instance, the Sunday dinner we had with the family and some invited friends consisted of BBQ and some sides. My brother-in-law smoked a few racks of baby-backs the day before, then smoked a chicken that morning. He also baked another chicken for those who preferred it without the smoky flavor (yeah, there are a few weirdos in my family ). I had brought some Salt Lick BBQ sauce from Texas, so we used that with his meats.

    He made a big pot of green beans out of his garden, with new potatoes (flavored with bacon, of course). He made some marinated cucumbers (also from his garden) and onions using our family's simple recipe of vinegar, water, sugar, salt, and pepper. My sister made an oriental-style slaw using green and red cabbage, sliced almonds, and crushed ramen noodles with a dressing she made. We had a big plate of sliced Missouri tomatoes. Homemade sweet tea to drink, and homemade peach cobbler with Blue Bell vanilla ice cream for dessert. (They can get Blue Bell in Springfield now.)

    Another night at a friend's house, we grilled brats and burgers, and served them with a big salad, homemade potato salad, baked beans, and sliced tomatoes and onions (I had found some big, beautiful, locally-grown Beefsteak tomatoes at a farmer's market that morning). One note about the baked beans; she made them using a fairly "standard" recipe, but used pork n' beans, canned baby limas, and canned kidney beans. I'd never had baked beans that way, but they were pretty tasty.

    Breakfast there was usually lots of coffee and fresh fruit from the farmer's market. (A local Amish family grows and sells some AWESOME cantelopes, so we ate a bunch of those.) Of course, as mentioned above, we had donuts one day.

    So, not much excitement there, but when you're eating good food with a group of people you enjoy, it makes the experience very nice.
    #16
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 17:58:55 (permalink)
    Bushie: your home cooked meals sound better than wonderful and I became very hungry reading about everything that you mentioned. Family harmony and being together with that type of spread is something every American family should admire.

    Everything sounded great and I enjoyed hearing about it.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
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    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 18:21:16 (permalink)
    Darnit, Paul! You took the words out of my mouth! Yes, Bushie, those meals with family and friends sound perfect. I love those kinds of "scenes". I better get used to it real quick as I'm marrying into a very large extended family on August 17th and everyone is close and everyone's an "eater". Bushie and Paul, you guys are invited w/spouses to our house when I start entertaining.
    #18
    Liketoeat
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 18:22:22 (permalink)
    Most interesting reports, Bushie. Tho I at times get near Springfield, I've not actually been there in years, and had no idea it had so many interesting restaurants, most appealing of which to me was Mexican Villa. Will have to get on into Springfield next time in the area. Even more appealing than Mexican Villa, tho, were your descriptions of family and friends gatherings and those home cooked meals. What you had there, as for both folks and food, can't be beat.
    #19
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 21:33:59 (permalink)
    CheeseWit, I'll take you up on that offer next time I'm in PA! I also envy your new family; I'm sure you'll have many great times and many great memories as your life progresses.

    Liketoeat, email me sometime and I'll fill you in on some other Springfield places. Although many of my old favorites have fallen by the wayside, there are still plenty of good holes-in-the-wall.
    #20
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 21:42:54 (permalink)
    Dinner with The Mayor and his First Lady (actually, the second)

    We met Al and his wife, Janet, at Moonlite BBQ in Owensboro, KY. We got there just a little while before the buffet opened and had a chance to visit before the meal.

    Al and Janet are both lovely people, as y'all would expect. We did a lot of telling each other about ourselves and our pasts, and we also did a lot of laughing. My wife, my daughter, and I all thoroughly enjoyed both the food and our dinner companions.

    Mr. Mayor has spoken of the food, and there's a review of this place on Roadfood, so I'll just reiterate that it's a first-class buffet. All high-quality and well-prepared, and a BUNCH of choices!

    Here's my FIRST plate of food (that meat there is Pulled Mutton):



    After dinner, we talked awhile longer, perused the gift shop for awhile, then Al and Janet headed out for their train-chasing trip. Before we left, we snapped a few shots. Here's one I'll share. That's Bushie on the left, Mr. Mayor on the right, and the Moonlite executive chef in the middle:





    We're looking forward to the next time we can rendezvous, perhaps down in Texas.
    #21
    ocdreamr
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/04 23:21:59 (permalink)
    Bushie,

    Sure looks like you had a great time. I'm really jealous Looking forward to further tales & photos.
    #22
    signman
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 00:04:31 (permalink)
    Bushie,
    Thanks for thinking of me and snapping the Mexican Villa sign. The restaurant must be proud of it, because they keep it lit during the day.

    I'm not familiar with St. Louis style pizza, but the one shown looks deelicious. In fact it looks a bit like Shakeys used to make, which sometimes were very good. Can you fill me in on the genre.
    #23
    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 00:26:33 (permalink)
    Bushie: There's an amazing resemblance in that pic of you, Al, and the "executive chef of the Moonlite", you guys look like brothers-even the silent one in the middle.
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    EliseT
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 04:28:23 (permalink)
    I think you were seperated at birth! Man, I can't wait to retire and travel the country following swap meets and BBQ smoke!
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    Sundancer7
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 04:38:53 (permalink)
    Great pics Bushie and a great pose by you and the Mayor. BBQ looks great. You indicated that was your first plate? I wonder how full the second one was?? Looked like lotsa fun to me.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
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    mayor al
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 06:47:15 (permalink)

    Paul, Bushie's second plate was almost identical to the first! Since it was a mid-week visit the buffet didn't have the Catfish choices we usually find on our weekend visits, but it did have the country ham ! It is strange that we tend to look down at "tough meat", but when it is country ham we refer to it(in Stern-talk) as full of character...or needing some extra-chewing to retrieve the full flavor! Well this ham filled that criteria for sure.
    I will say that my 3rd plate (the dessert)held samples of the chocolate-pecan pie, coconut cream pie, and a slice of the strawberry-rhubarb witha bunch of the blackberry cobbler on it.
    This week our short (2 day) trip will be centered on exploring a section of Hiway 127 in Central Kentucky- around Danville. This is the week of the "World's Longest Yard Sale" on that road. It is an annual event reaching from the Ohio River on the North across Kentucky, Tennessee and into Alabama (about 400 miles)
    Elise- this would be the trip for you !!
    Bushie, Keep those reports coming in, We love to hear about your journey.
    #27
    CheeseWit
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 07:42:31 (permalink)
    Al, I saw that World's Largest Yard Sale in a documentary by Rick Sebak on PBS. It looks awesome! I'm sure I could pick up a few ACL soda bottles, and I bet the food along the way is tremendous.
    #28
    Bushie
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 10:20:35 (permalink)
    Y'all, I recognized the "family" resemblance right away!

    Signman, St. Louis-style pizza is basically thin-crust, made with provolone, cut in little squares. Joekirkwood talked more about these in his St. Louis tread, and gave some good places to try:
    http://www.roadfood.com/Forums/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=780&SearchTerms=St.,Louis This particular one in Springfield has the most unique flavor I've ever had, and I absolutely love it.

    Ocdreamr (and Lovie if you're peeking in), I gave Mr. Mayor those hugs you asked me to pass on, but we didn't make it to the kisses.

    And Sundance, Mr. Mayor is right, my second plate was as big as my first. I also fit in a couple of ham biscuits, some rhubarb pie, strawberry shortcake, and blackberry cobbler. All washed down with sweet tea!

    #29
    Lone Star
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    RE: Bushie Trip - July 2003 2003/08/05 10:34:20 (permalink)
    Thanks for the write-up Bushie! The home-cooked meals sound a lot like our family get togethers, except there is usually fried catfish involved!


    If you ever get together in Texas, count me in!
    #30
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