Sunday, April 5, 2009

Charleston, SC

This week was spent in Charleston South Carolina teaching a CWNA Class to a group of contractors working at a local Navy base. It reminded me of my time spent living on base housing - going through security gates, lots or acronyms, etc.

I guess I was there once before... Mom said we stopped by there after living in Morocco (where I was born) - so I was only 4-months old the last time...

This time was a wee bit of an adventure. I had a chance to try out some things I'd never attempted before, see a part of the country, and be near a bunch of history in the Charleston area.
There are so many historical sites in Charleston, from the old-town that rivaled New Orleans, Boston, New York, and Philadelphia... significant parts of the Revolutionary War, War of 1812, and was the starting battle of the Civil War... there was lots of history there. Too bad I actually had to work during the day and didn't get to catch much of it.

I was able, after the last day of class before my flight, to take a drive all around the 'loop' of Charleston, over the new bridge, and through some of the surrounding areas and to see the Atlantic Ocean.

The longest Cable-Stay Bridge in the western hemisphere

I'll definitely be wanting to return to Charleston to spend some more time exploring.

I learned about the history of BBQ starting in South Carolina. Check out this
BBQ History web page. The city is situated on a spit of land where three rivers all converge before heading out to the Atlantic. One of the locals there described it as 'where the Atlantic Ocean starts'. The land is very flat, close to sea level, and marshes everywhere. no wonder they call it the 'low country'.

Some of the other things I was able to experience this week.

Boiled Peanuts - I had heard boiled peanuts taste nothing like roasted peanuts or peanut butter... They were right! - Lots of folks down in SC seem to like their boiled peanuts. Flavored with pork, or cajun, or BBQ flavors. Supposedly they are better hot. The ones I tasted were cold, and very slimy. Kind of like what a snotty ball of dirt might taste like... One taste was enough. I guess you just have to acquire the Boiled Peanut taste.

Brazilian Cheese Bread
- or Pao De Queijo. This is special bread made without any wheat... it's made from tapioca flour instead. Like boiled peanuts - this must be an acquired taste. I tried a couple of flavors... the cheddar was better... but I wouldn't try this one again.

Mac & Cheese Pizza
- another new culinary delight for the week. I didn't think I'd like this one, but had to try it anyway. I was very pleasantly surprised. This was actually very good, I had to go back for seconds and thirds on this one. What a great idea. Take two things that taste good, and put them together!

Fry Sauce on Rice
- OK, they called it 'White Sauce' but it's basically the same thing we use for fry sauce, just much more mayo to keep it pretty white. I tried it on my rice at a Tepenyaki place - a couple of the students went through multiple small dishes of the stuff on their rice, and even took some home with their doggie bags... but for me, Fry Sauce is for fries. (It's even better when made with a good hickory BBQ sauce instead of ketchup)

My trip home was a long, slow, drawn out affair. Taking nearly 14 hours to get back to Utah.

A short turn and in a couple of hours I'll be off to another week in Minneapolis this time. But next weekend I get to spend the Easter holiday with Karrissa, Joe and the grand-daughters in Vegas! Yea!


Karrissa Winward said...

Snot dirt ball, yum! McKinley would probably like boiled peanuts because she like to eat her boogers. We can't wait to see you!

Gramps said...

Glad you enjoyed what things you could do in Charleston SC. The peanuts, etc don't sound that interesting to me either. Mac & Cheese pizza. That would fun to try.
Thanks for your posts and comments.

Gram said...

Interesting food, Keith. Thanks for posting. Sorry we missed you this weekend.