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Marco Rubio for Senate September 27, 2010

Posted by Fritz in Yachts and other things that float.
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There really are special people in this world and I just met one of them today. It’s so cool to meet someone whose unique charisma, charm and inner spirit  undeniably sets them apart from the rest of us.

Marco Rubio is one of those people.

Rubio, running for the US senate, made a town hall stop in my little ‘burg of Boynton Beach to a group of supporters crammed into a Duffy’s Sports bar. His fifteen minute speech was an extemporaneous rally cry for all who can’t wait to make the real ‘change we can believe in’ this Fall. He’s a dynamic speaker whose youthful good looks and killer smile will only add to the future Presidential material chatter that is already floating around out there.  Believe me, when the rest of America sees what I saw today, they’ll be shouting “Rubio para el Presidente!”

Fritz & Marco

Blue Hole over Boynton August 26, 2010

Posted by Fritz in Yachts and other things that float.
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The Bermuda Triangle may be more famous but the Blue Hole over Boynton is just as mysterious. When I moved to Boynton Beach, Florida 12 years ago, I heard somebody tell me about a weird phenomenon in the skies over my town. It seems the entire area can be being pounded with rain and thunderstorms—a near daily occurrence during the summer rainy season—but the skies over Boynton Beach mysteriously remain clear.

Case in point. Yesterday, before I headed off to pick up my daughter from school, I checked the radar. A huge mass of rain was developing south of me and was tracking north. The colorful blob on the radar screen was so big I knew we were in for a nice, prolonged, needed soaking. As I headed out the sky was inky black to the immediate south and west confirming the radar. My trip took me west, then north. Not one mile from home the rain started. I ended up following the storm north driving the 12 miles in a building rain. After I had picked up daughter dear, we headed south, back into the thick of the maelstrom. I wondered out loud if it would be raining at the house when we got there. My grass certainly needed the water. The storm had indeed tracked from the south to the north. The further south we traveled the larger the pools of water in the road. However, as soon as I turned east off the turnpike the pavement got dryer and dryer. By the time I turned into my neighborhood, the road was bone dry—we had had nary a drop.

This weird phenomenon has happened time after time. What looks to be a sure hit on radar turns into a sure miss. I haven’t kept stats but I would bet storms mysteriously part as they pass over Boynton Beach more than 70 percent of the time. Many people might ask why I don’t embrace this phenomenon as a blessing—“it’s always sunny in Boynton….” It may be sunny but my watering bill is way too high.

Happy Memorial Day May 31, 2010

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Three years ago a new Veterans cemetery opened west of my town. The South Florida National Cemetery held a lovely ceremony honoring all our veterans. My Dad and his wife joined me and my wife and daughter for this morning’s event. I was very pleased to see a very large turnout—at least 2000 braving the rapidly warming breeze. It reminded me of the  way we celebrated Memorial Day where I grew up in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.

The Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts marched and led us in the Pledge of Allegiance. A bag pipe and drum corp led the color guards to the forefront to open the program. A minister invoked the gathering with prayer and several local dignitaries and the incumbent Congressman in my district spoke—Ron Klein. A disgusting liberal who is being challenged by Allen West who, if you have read my blog before, is an amazing man running for Congress, District 22 from Florida. It was a shame Col. West didn’t speak.  Klein is not a veteran and West is! Thankfully Klein’s remarks were brief and the program went on with sobering words from several highly decorated veterans. I was glad my Dad was there. As the only veteran in my family, I felt he should be honored too while he is still around to enjoy it.

The cemetery has already interred over 6200 veterans. I pray those that follow are from America’s old wars and not any new ones.

Below is a screen shot from Allen West’s websight.

Little League update August 27, 2009

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LLBBWS09_160px_transtanThe kids from San Antonio held on last night in a magnificent display of defense beating New York 4-1. They’re now set to meet the winner of tonight’s semifinal game for the US championship on Saturday at 3pm eastern on ABC.

Ya just gotta love Little League.

Here’s the link to their coach’s blog. http://mcallisterlittleleaguewilliamsport.blogspot.com/

Local info:

My little town of Boynton Beach, FL represented the US in the ’03 title game losing to Japan.(rather badly too)

Loco for local August 21, 2009

Posted by Fritz in Food, Yachts and other things that float.
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Grilled salmon in pesto with grilled eggplant and leeks

Grilled salmon in pesto with grilled eggplant and leeks

My creative juices have been flowing of late, probably a result of recent visits to some favorite blogs that always inspire and amaze.

Culinaria Eugenius is one such blog. The author, Jennifer Burns Levin, is an excellent writer and most likely an outstanding cook. Her posts include inspiring recipes focused on utilizing local products whenever possible.

In search of an inspiring idea for dinner one night this week I checked out her latest posts. Much of her latest writing has been about what is currently being cultivated in Eugene, OR right now. It seems berries are all the rage. I had to poke a little deeper to find some meatier stories. Along the way I learned much about Calphalon, bees, berries, pickling and the joys of eating local. A few older posts on grilling and visiting the Oregon coast and eating fresh local seafood got my mouth watering. I decided to head to my local fish market and check out the fare.

Captain Frank’s Seafood Market is the best around. While pricey, the seafood is always fresh and the selection, especially for local, non-commercially caught fish is excellent; except for today.

Captain Frank'd Seafood Market

Captain Frank's Seafood Market

Captain Frank’s is a family owned business, operating in what looks to be an old residential house just east of the freeway in Boynton Beach, FL. This year, like every year since they opened in 1998, they take a six-week vacation. The family members retreat to their New Jersey haunts and force us to settle for supermarket fare until they return. As I approached the front door a handwritten sign informed me the store would be closing on Saturday for their annual vacation. Once inside my heart began to sink. The usually full display cases were nothing but melting ice. Where there should have been row upon row of gorgeous filets of the finest the sea can produce, it was mostly shellfish. I had to walk down to the end of the display to finally find fish. The first was a pile of tilapia…sorry, I don’t do tilapia. Next were some good looking shark steaks…not in the mood. Then came the salmon; bright, fresh, moist filets. Hmmm, hadn’t been thinking about salmon but I didn’t have much of a choice now. I was really looking for locally caught fish like wahoo or cobia or even the Florida mainstay, grouper—none to be found. The really ironic thing was the sign stuck in the front filet announcing proudly the fish was Scottish salmon. OK, so sometimes buying local is harder to do; but hey, I’m ¼ Scottish. I wished them all a nice vacation and trotted out with a pound and a half of Scotland’s finest fish.

Uh oh....

Uh oh....

I was able to redeem myself with local fare in the vegetable department as I picked up some locally grown eggplant and leeks from a Farmer’s market down the street.

While it wasn’t exactly what I had intended to do, the end result was delicious and garnered raves from the wife and child, “You can sure make this again, Dad!”

They’ll just have to wait six more weeks.


Grilled Salmon in Pesto

½ cup roasted pine nuts
¾ cup chopped fresh mint
¾ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided use
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
8 cloves garlic, peeled
2 green onions, trimmed and chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon chili sauce
½ teaspoon salt
¾  cup olive oil, divided use
6 tablespoons lemon juice
½ cup white wine, divided use
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 ½ pounds salmon
½ cup whipping cream
¼ cup diced red bell pepper

Heat grill.
In a food processor, add pine nuts, mint, 1/2-cup Parmesan cheese, cilantro, garlic, green onions, basil, chili sauce and salt. Carefully pour 1/2-cup olive oil in while blending thoroughly; set aside.
In a large dish, combine ¼ cup olive oil, lemon juice, ¼ cup white wine and pepper. Add salmon and marinate 15 minutes. Grill the salmon until just flaking, about 12 minutes. Remove the skin before serving.
While the salmon is grilling, in a saucepan combine cream and ¼ cup white wine and bring to a boil; add the pesto mixture and serve over the salmon, Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese and garnish with chopped red pepper.


Grilled Eggplant and Leeks with Cilantro Vinaigrette

3 baby eggplants or 1 very large eggplant peeled
1 large or two small leeks stem and top trimmed
6 tablespoons olive oil (+ 2 tablespoons for brushing)
½ teaspoons roasted cumin seeds
¼ cup fresh cilantro
¼ cup flat-leaf parsley
1 large garlic clove
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

If you are using baby eggplant, halve each one lengthwise. If you are using a large eggplant, cut it crosswise in ½ inch slices. Salt them and let them drain for about 20 minutes. Trim leek and blanch whole in boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove and plunge in ice bath. Once cooled, slice lengthwise in half.
Heat grill. (450º F)
Pat eggplant slices dry and brush them and the leeks with oil. Grill eggplant about 8 minutes each side, leeks about 4 minutes per side. Remove both from grill. Cut eggplant and leeks into 3 inch strips.
Blend the remaining ingredients along with the remaining olive oil in a blender or food processor until emulsified. Toss eggplants and leeks with the vinaigrette. Serve as bed for salmon.