Flea Bottom Bowl of Brown
I had a little struggle with recipes here with myself. On one hand, I have a super authentic amazing looking stew that would probably resemble the bowl of brown best, complete with a slew of bones and gristle to make things more interesting. This recipe is found in "A Feast of Ice and Fire," the official Game of Thrones cook book. It looks amazing and savory and plain delicious and I couldn't wait to try it. Then I found another recipe online that used less authentic ingredients but looked equally delicious. After much consideration and inner toil - as it's no secret that I have a huge girl-crush on the ladies from the Inn where this beloved book of mine was born - I decided to go with the other recipe.
I know, sad, huh? Not to say that I won't someday cook up their amazing version of this scary-looking stew but for this occasion I went with the more simpler of renditions. The recipe from the cook book has lots of bones in it and there is nothing I hate more (Ok, slight exaggeration... Justin Bieber is pretty dang annoying...) than bones in my soup. It's a weird quirk and I admit that I am a bit strange for this being as off-putting as it is to me - that being said I will still cook their stew at some point to try it if for no other reason then to appreciate their amazing craft. For the premier party, however, no bones just lots and lots of mystery meat.
The recipe I am using can be found here:
I love this recipe because it's easy - this is something I intend to cook the Saturday before hand in my crock pot and let it ride until party time.
I was also faced with quite a dilemma when I finally got my guest list finalized.... I have more people coming to this party than I have dishes to feed them. I could have dinner shifts but that's kinda annoying... you'd have the first shift sitting at the table oogling over how awesome the food is and the second shift sitting on the couch slamming wildfire and glaring in jealousy at the first shift. No, that wasn't going to work. I had to buy more dishes... UGH. And can I really say UGH because the ones I wanted to buy were insanely expensive and honestly, how often do I have 13 people over to eat at once? Not often enough to justify crapping $200 on new dinnerware. I love ya'll but not that much!
The search began for some inexpensive dinnerware - bowls being the first priority. I would need a lot of them since I would be using them for the soup and the desert... I did, after all, flake out of building my 13 dragon egg bowls for the cherries and cream so, there’s that. I searched high and low, store to store... dollar tree had nothing impressive and all of my local thrift stores came up empty as well (Although I did manage to snag some pretty awesome serving trays and dishes - more on those later!)
I wanted to find some really pretty onion soup crocks - complete with the lid and the little handles on the side - Now, given enough time, I could have just MADE them, but I had no time when everything was said and done. I went to a few potter buddies of mine to see if I could commission something from them and yes, their work is amazing but I couldn't afford $20 a piece for these so I turned to my dear old friend eBay to see what she had to offer me....
Amazon and eBay have been my close buddies for years. Every once in a while, eBay and I will have a bad experience and I will take a break - using Amazon as my go-to online shopping source. Then I will get sad and miss eBay and we'll start talking again like we never stopped in the first place. On Amazon, I found a case of onion crocks for a really good price but it was from an outside vendor which means I would have to pay for shipping... Nuh-uh. So I went to eBay. On eBay I found the same case of onion crocks for less money plus free shipping - it would have been slightly cheaper for a case of 12 crocks but LO - scrolling down a little further and I found a case of 24 crocks for about 20$ cheaper than the case of 12. Hey, that's good math to me, so I bought them!
They're your average onion soup crock, nothing special, mass produced, super cheap style crock. They don't have the lid I was looking for but that's ok, the lid was more for my own wow-factor anyway. All in all, I am very happy with my little soup bowls. And I have almost enough (minus 1...) to make desert with them as well. They hold up to 12 oz which doesn't seem like much but with all of the other food we're planning on having, this is the perfect amount.
Plus they look cool. And they're dishwasher safe.
So I will have my soup, a heel of some day-old bread and a slice of pork pie to top things off for the first course of our meal. Should be pretty awesome! Here's to hoping none of the crocks are broken.... eeep!