Eleven Demandments
Short Stories
Page 18
Buy The Book
Reader Reviews

Carnitas are so good, I once made them for almost two years straight.

Pork loin
Refried beans
Extra sharp cheddar cheese
Jalapenos, pickled
Flour tortillas
Sour cream
Hot sauce
Cilantro, guacamole, salsa or whatever else you might put in your carnitas  

Prepare the Pot (see page 18)  

When the pot is ready, add the pork. Sprinkle in some cinnamon, poke the hell out of the orange and add to the pot. Cook for a couple hours on High and then at least another 4 hours on Low.  

Empty a can of refried beans into a pan and cover it with cheese. Cook in the oven until the cheese starts to get crispy. Warm the tortillas, even if it’s just by putting them in foil on top of the crock pot. Tortillas are better warm.  

Suggested beverage- Pike Place Pale Ale.

Another staple of the Scottish Buddhist Diet is the Monstrosity at Mike's Chili in the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle. The Monstrosity is a grilled cheese sandwich with a hot dog on top (butterflied), smothered in chili with onion, cheese and jalepenoes. The Monstrosity is not on the menu, and it probably never will be. The Monstrosity came to me in a dream, is best made by Steve on a weeknight, and was named by Mariah who no longer works there. If you're not local to Ballard here's how to make it at home (though it's not quite as good)-

Homemade Monstrosity

2 Onions
2 pounds ground beef
1 can of tomato paste
2 fresh tomatoes, diced
Green pepper, diced
Bag of kidney beans
Chili paste
Salt and pepper
Hot dogs
Bread (get the sourdough)
Cheddar cheese

Soak the beans overnight. I know cans are easier, but we're not animals, are we?

Prepare the Pot (see page 18)

Add the tomato paste, diced tomato, tabasco, more garlic, another onion, and some chili paste to the crock pot. Turn the pot to Low.

Brown and drain the beef. Add to the pot. Cook for 4-6 hours.

About an hour before preparing the hot dogs and grilled cheese, add the kidney beans and take a double dose of Zantac.

Grill the hot dogs and cheese sandwiches. Butterfly the hot dogs, put on top of the sandwiches, cover with chili, and add freshly grated cheddar cheese, chopped onion and chopped jalepeno.

A year after my wife and I moved to Seattle I got a shop and set up a boat business. Next door was a wood shop owned by a guy named Dave and I loved him immediately, like an older brother. The first place he took me to in Ballard was Mike’s Chili Parlor and we went there every Saturday for lunch.  

Dave’s not around anymore but I still try to go there once a week. Have some chili and a couple beers and do the NY Times crossword puzzle like we used to do. 

The second place Dave took me in Ballard was just a standard beer and burgers kind of place and when we sat down at the bar, he made a production of ordering his beer. He was very adamant that his beer be served in a stem glass and even asked to look at what kinds they had.  

The busy bartender had little patience for Dave, but poured off half a beer in a wineglass while rolling her eyes.  

Dave downed his beer and began to teach me (his new little brother) an important lesson.  

He looked around the bar and said, “If you ever have a problem with some asshole in a place like this, that beer glass ain’t gonna help ya. Always drink your beer from a stem glass because if shit goes down you need a weapon. Just break off the base of your glass like this…” he mocked breaking off the base of his wine glass by hitting it on the bar on an angle, “and JAMMING IT INTO THEIR FUCKING THROAT LIKE THIS- AAAAAAAARRRGHHH!!!!”  

I suggested that maybe if he weren’t drinking his beer out of a wineglass there would be less need to defend yourself, but he just tapped on the side of his head and told me I might use this information one day.  

And he was right!  

Our neighborhood was mostly small shops and a couple abandoned houses. They were about to demolish one of these old house so Dave and a couple other shop owners went inside to see if there was anything still in there.  

There wasn’t much other than some golf clubs and some figurines, but Dave got excited and thought the figurines might actually be worth something so he went back to his shop to see if he could find some information in one of his books (he had a remarkable amount of books in his wood shop) and made a couple phone calls.  

He came back a half hour later with a book in his hand all excited only to find Bill and Brian practicing their golf swings on rocks, now that the figurines were gone. “YOU WRECKED ‘EM!!” Dave yelled.  

"Now, Dave,” Bill said, “there’s no need for name calling.”  

And up until his death, whenever Dave messed something up we would yell- YOU RECTUM!!   Nobody’s sure but we all think he never got the joke.  

Suggested beverages- Mac n Jack’s at Mike’s, Guinness at home.


The first meal I mastered in the crock pot.  

5 pounds ground beef
2 pieces of toast
6 eggs
Oregano, if you have it
Salt and pepper
Cheddar cheese
Precooked bacon
Heinz catsup  

Prepare the Pot (see page 18)  

Chop up the second onion and some more garlic and add to a large bowl.  

Wash your hands again, remove the lid from the crock pot, and stir the butter, onion and garlic around the pot, buttering the sides.  

Add in the ground beef, eggs, toast, oregano (if you have it), and salt and pepper to the large bowl. Mix together well, lift out of the bowl, bouncing it around to pack it all together, and drop it into the crock pot. Press the center down making it concave. This will help later. Turn the pot to Low and cook for 4 hours.  

Remove the coagulated fat and grease and turn the pot to High for 2 hours.  

Remove more fat and grease, and add the bacon, cheese and catsup, and cook on Low for a couple more hours.   

Serve with chilled catsup.  

Suggested beverage- Fremont Universale Pale in a can.