To Interstate 40 and Beyond!

Travel Kit!  We are much more prepared!

As you can tell, useless information is what I’m full of. (Never end a sentence with a preposition). I used to call someone on a land line and ask,  “Mr. So and So, is such and such there?”  He would reply, “No.” I would respond, “Where’s he at?”  He would say, “Between the A and T.” I never knew what that meant.  Still don’t.

Useless information#1:  A guy said, “Hey dude, what makes you a food critic?”  Good question.  We are not critics. But…I am world famous (primarily to children under the age of 8) for making THE WORLD’S BEST PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY SANDWICH.  See, I mix the peanut butter with…can’t tell you. That’s the secret.  If you have seen me make it, then you know.  I made a PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY SANDWICH FOR THE QUEEN OF ENGLUND.  (Not England.  That’s a whole different story). That’s where the credentials come from…

The very best thing about this blog is meeting people.  Meeting people makes us happy.  Set aside personal or political views and focus on FOOD.  Now that’s what it is all about. Everybody eats something.  You go to a Friday night football game, and people come from everywhere.  The concession stand may be THE meal for Friday.  Man, we have had some gooood fooood!

Useless information #2:  Remember the hair thing…useless info, but it explains a lot if I met you and forgot your name.

This week we rolled up in the fantastic town of Shamrock.                   

The guys at the gate let us in for free! We didn’t know they were hungry. 😊 Maybe they already heard about the blog.  LOL!!!

                      

We met two fantastic people at the concession stand.  Cathy Blain was one of those people. She has worked in the stand for 8 years, and she is retired Navy. Nuff said.  Thank you for your service!  Then, we met Charlene Poole.  I can’t really single out Charlene because all the Pooles are on the “paytold.”  If you don’t know what that means, then good, you don’t want to know, but the Pooles have been manning the concession stand for the last few years.  The cause for the concession stand is for the Fighting Irish Band.

The menu was large, but we settled on the sausage-on-a-stick and THE chili cheese burger.

                                                       

I hate to steal words from another person, but… it was the Bomb. THE chili cheese burger was the best.  I’m not kidding, THE best I have had so far.  It was not sloppy.  Most burgers like this have chili that runs down my arm and shirt. (Tide Stain Stick, we need a sponsor 😊).  That kind of sloppy burger has absolutely no taste because you are eating so fast to keep the stuff off you.  It’s not enjoyable.  You’ve been there.  Shamrock’s had just enough chili that it was in each and every single bite.  And, the mustard!  It was the same, just enough so I got a bit of mustard with every bite.  DELISH!  Patent that burger.  I didn’t eat it all, (Doc’s orders!) so we shared with the gatekeepers.

Future gatekeepers keep that in mind!

This week’s palate cleanser! Shamrock’s buttery, salty popcorn.  Yum!

Next stop Toyoko!   Meet Buck!                 

 

 

No, It was Lefors.           

The last time I was in LEFORS,  I was like 8.  My little private school played them in football.  My brother-in-law was the quarterback. We called him “Roger.” Not Staubach, just ROGER.  That is a whole other story. We solved ancient mysteries while we were in Lefors.  The first mystery was the location of the stadium.  This is not a crack at Lefors.  It is a crack on our stupidity.  I think we drove through the entire of town of Lefors while the Australian accented guy on the GPS kept telling us we were in, his pronunciation not mine, LEFFERS.  Then we opened our eyes and read the sign telling us where the stadium was located.  We were there 15 minutes before “lightbulb” shined!  Just so you know, those of you traveling up and down I-40, the construction zone has even spread to Lefors!

Mystery #2 was the actual pronunciation of Lefors.  We took it from the pit masters and volunteer firemen, Craig Seely and Sy Brown.  If the fire chief says it is pronounced one way, then that’s the way for me.  I always thought it was LEEEfors.  Nope!  It’s LAAAfors.  That’s the way I understood it.

On to the food!

Craig and Sy turned it on. They had help from the one I guess was really running the show, Bridgette Parks, president of the athletic Booster Club who takes careof the Pirate concession stand.  These guys got it going on.  Besides the concession they cook brisket all year round.  The concession menu short list was over-the -grill quesadillas, beef, or chicken. They also had burgers, dogs, and baked potatoes.  I’m sorry we can’t try it all even though I WANT TOO.  Dang it, Doc!  We had the chicken quesadillas which were perfectly cheesy and full of tasty shredded chicken.  We LOVED the chili, cheese, baked potato.  Bridgette suggested the loaded fries but the baked sounded soooo good, and she loaded it with creamy butter and topped it with sour cream.  I also added (I call in hot sauce.) Picante, and it just all melted in my mouth!  Sorry, Doc!

        

I also had a Ring Pop (You don’t get one of those every day.) for dessert.

We had the best shout out FFFN!!! See video.  Thanks guys!  Click the link!        IMG_1167

 

Let’s go to Pampa.  

Man, Oh Man, Oh Man!  Have you ever heard of the Fair?  Well the fair ain’t got nothing on Pampa.  I mean Nothing! When we were young the Tri-State fair was a big, big thing.  Still, to this day, people go to the fair for the food.  You want fair food?  Go to Pampa on home game nights.  Funnel cakes, fried Oreos, walking tacos, and pulled pork tacos. We tasted the previous two.    

The walkers were loaded with everything taco and very tasty and filling.  Nacho Cheese Doritos were the perfect vehicle!  The pulled pork tacos were made of fresh, soft-corn tortillas and topped with homemade slaw.  They also had a choice of sauces, mild to HOT!  There were tents with burgers, corn-on-the-cob, and cotton candy.

We also sampled bunuelos, fried flour tortillas sprinkled with cinnamon-sugar,   and we horchata, a Mexican milk concoction.  Both were deeelicious!  What a Fantastic, Fantastic idea!  Each and every booster club, wrestling, volleyball, softball, soccer, band, you name the booster club, everyone had a booth to raise funds for their group.  And, the food was Wooooonderfuuuuuulll! We couldn’t get to everything, but we will be back!

             

Winners tonight:

Beast (BEST) Burger: Shamrock

The BEST Choices: Pampa, I’m thinking you might win it all.  We will see!

Our choice and overall winner: LAAAfors loaded baked potato.

P.S.  The queen of Englund never showed up for her world’s best PB&J.  That was rude…..

Tastes on 287!

Week one of Food Fight Friday Night is complete!  Just remember as you’re following us, that fun is the goal as we describe food, places, and the people we meet along the way.  If you’re looking for poetic or perfect writing, this may not be your place. If entertainment, giggles, and some great concessions are what you need… smile, read on, share the news, and LIKE us everywhere you can, so we get LOTS OF FANS!

If you read the introduction to this year’s FFFN you know this came to me while not sleeping one night. We don’t have a plan, director, or producer. We just hop in the Buick that we fondly call “Buck” and drive ‘til we see lights or a game. (Hopefully, BUICK will advertise or link to our blog! LOL!) Usually we are heading somewhere in Texas, New Mexico, or wherever. We don’t have a set plan.  NONE!

I Mean NONE!

If we have to plan, it won’t be fun.  So, concessions stands, you won’t know we’re coming.

Neither will we… 🙂

Here is a little useless information.  I know I may look like Andrew Zimmer (minus the orange glasses), but I’m not.  I just had a checkup, and my doctor, who’s a friend of mine, said, “Hey dude, you need to lose a little weight. Why don’t you eat a little better?” I told him about this idea, saying, “Doc, I think I’ll be eating pretty well.”  He agreed!  Also, my memory is as long as my hair!  If I forget a name or misspell your name, it’s hereditary. That’s what I blame it on anyway.

We started off a little rough this week.  We forgot some essentials, like a knife, so we can cut off samples.  I did agree with the doc not eat the whole thing, although it has been really hard so far!  We forgot plastic trash bags, (see picture) hand and chin wipies, Pepto Bismol, Tums, or Rolaids.  (We hope you advertise or link someday! That’s the ONLY reason I brought those names up. Lol)  The food was way too good to need those things!  We also forgot a bib for me.  There is no pic for the obvious embarrassment reasons.  Those who know me understand.  Later my grandson said, “Poppy, you make a mess!”

We rolled into Childress, TX early. I mean EARLY.  Our mistake, but we thought, “Heck, we will beat the crowd.” Well, let me tell you, we BEEEEEEAAAAATTTTTT the crowd!  We were like the people that leave church while the preacher is praying before the invitation hymn, so they can beat the crowd to their favorite restaurant or get their favorite seat in Sunday school. But, you had your eyes open when the preacher said, “All heads bowed and all eyes closed,” so you saw them sneak out! That EEEEAAAARLY. I think you get the point.

So, Ms. Cindy, who runs the Childress concession stand, wasn’t ready for us. She was gracious!  I mean, man, GRACIOUS and SWEET.  Some of the things that are so good about small town concession stands are the people who work in them and for what cause. Childress’s stand is a fundraiser for the freshman class. People who work the stand don’t get to see the whole game. So thank them. It takes a lot of time.

On to the food!  Ms. Cindy gave me the concession stand favorite, the SAUSAGE WRAP. The wrap was FOR REAL!  It had a big piece of smoked sausage, the size of my wrist.  Man, it was good!  I wish I would have put onions and mustard on it, but it didn’t need it.  The wrap was one of those things I promised the doc I wouldn’t eat the whole thing, so I pulled it in half. (forgot the knife-see previous note and pics)  I would wrap it back up, and as we drove down the road, I would reach down into the floorboard, (pic!) unroll it, and take another bite.  Thank you, Ms. Cindy. I wish we could have tried the rest of your menu, and in the words of Arnold Schwarzenegger, “We’ll be back!”

We thought we were just going to take our lump for being there early and drive on down the road, but as we were leaving the parking lot we saw a table lined with ladies dressed in the blue Bobcat colors.  It’s a good thing we saw them!  We pulled in front of a trailer rig already parked, and probably cut in front of them. Sorry, whoever you were. That was us. The Childress Women’s Council had concocted a table of goods.  Jay Hardin’s smoked, pulled pork sandwich, chips, (Lay’s, we hope you advertise or link us someday-see pic!) and a drink, all for seven bucks!  GREAT deal and a GREAT cause because this organization helps provide a shoe closet and school supplies for the community, and they raise money for scholarships as well.  Please support them in more ways than buying a sandwich when you get a chance.

Let’s get back to the food.  Jay, I don’t know what wood you smoked the pork with, and I don’t need too.  All I know is when I opened the wrapper…I gained a pound just by the smell.  Then I added the Flying V barque (I hate spelling barque.  Kinda’ like I hate spelling Albuque) sauce on it, and a few more pounds were added!  Sorry Doc. Cap asked the creator of that sweet ‘n tangy, delicious sauce if she would share her recipe on our blog.  Her quick reply, “Nope, but you can buy it in locations in Childress and way down the road in Stratford, TX!  Check that out when you get a chance!

We used the Lay’s potato chips (sponsor please) as a palate cleanser for the next stand. Can’t eat just one palate cleanser.

Oh well!

 

 

 

 

Next stop, Tokyo! That’s for my kids, if they read this dang thing. They’ll think that was funny, funny!

It was Quanah, TX.  We weren’t late to Quanah.  In the past, I had only driven through Quanah and knew nothing about the town, so when we pulled into the stadium, I saw that arrow in the ground and the word, “Indians,” and I didn’t have great hope for good food.  My history class in high school was a long time ago.  All I could think of was corn and buffalo. (tatonga)  I think that’s how it’s spelled.

BOY! WAS I WRONG!

The lady at the gate let us in free.  After hearing what we are up to with this food blog, she said, “Boy, I hope it’s good tonight!”   It was!  Ms. Melissa ran the stand. Quanah’s  proceeds go to THE PRIDE OF THE TRIBE QUANAH INDIANS BAND. They fed 76 band members that night! Good for you. The band members got a great, great burger.

Here is a little history.  Melissa and crew used the new grill for the first time that night.  They received many donations for the grill and the new cooler. So, from us for them, Thanks!

Those of you that grill know half the flavor from the grill is from the old previous smoke. NOT TONIGHT!  The burger was just like eating one from home. Better actually. It had a great, smoky taste and it was fresh. GOOD!

 

 

 

 

 

We try to ask someone at the stand to recommend the best thing on the menu or the specialty. Ms. Melissa said, “Tonight it is the Mexican stack!”  IT STACKED UP!  I mean, TALL. It was loaded with her specially seasoned ground beef, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, sour cream, and jalapenos all over Fritos. (link and advertise, please)

Messy, delicious, satisfying,   …and we needed a nap!

The big hit for me was what the guy behind me in the line suggested.  I’m sorry I forgot his name.  Please see reference above about my memory and the length of my hair.  When you ask someone what they are going to eat and they say, “I’m gonna’ get three of them!” well, you better get one!  The chili cheese dog was the BOMB!  I love hot dogs.  I know my dogs. That was the whole litter of dogs!  That guy new the story too. The chili was the K&R restaurant recipe.  I am assuming it was a local joint.  BOW-WOW-WOW!  Fantastic, cheese drippin’ all over the dog, chili just the right consistency, not too thick, not too runny, PERFECT chili cheese dog! We ate that too fast to get a picture!

Childress, you were at a disadvantage on Friday. That was our fault, and as promised, we will be back to have another taste!

 

 

That said.  Quanah won Week One of FOOD FIGHT FRIDAY NIGHT!   

See you next week!

 

Let the FUN Begin!

High school football season will soon kick off, and for a couple that loves road trips, sports, and FOOD, it creates an opportunity to combine the three into a weekly Friday “date night”!  Darren, my guy, laid awake one night hashing out this idea a month or so ago, and since then we have devised what we think is the perfect plan.

“What,” you ask, “Are we up to?”

We are going on a weekly adventure to find the BEST home-town CONCESSION STAND FOOD!

When I was a kid, growing up in Gruver, a very small town in the Texas panhandle, concession stand food, in my memory, was fabulous!  The baseball concession stand comes to mind with its homemade chili to top Frito pies.  You know the ones that scalded your hands because the bags of corn chips were just slit down the sides and topped with piping hot goodness.  In high school, I remember I couldn’t wait to play basketball in Sunray because they had the most delicious, juicy hamburgers.  When my kids and I moved to Panhandle, football season meant getting to devour the famous cheese on a stick.  Since that time, while pulling our weight in fundraising for clubs or raising our kids and attending various sporting events, Darren and I have eaten, for lack of a better word, TONS of concession stand food!  In our weekly escape, we will set out to taste-test the best of the best, visiting towns all over the state and making some awesome new memories.

Each Friday we will pick two or three (or more) concession stands to visit.  We will sample, fill out a scorecard, and report back on our blog the following Saturday.

Score Card

Pretty simple, but we also want it to be fun for the organizations that are running the stands. So we’re using the “food fight” to promote your club, school, etc.  You can invite us!  You can send recipes for us to post on the blog!  We will advertise  your specialty foods!  Right here on…

Food Fight Friday Night!

What could be better than writing about your best concession stand fare and hopefully sending more patrons your way to raise more money for the gourps doing the work?

Each week you can visit this site, see pictures of our destinations and the delicious food we taste, and join in the fun!

We’ll kick off on Friday, September 7th!

Oh!  Check out the great recipe in the menu above!   😉

See you soon!

Darren and Cappi