Apple strudel

We are now into our final 10-day stretch of hunters at Grey Duck Landing. I have started a half dozen blogs only to quit at a loss to say anything interesting. Perhaps the most grist for storytelling was some sort of plague that swept through the lodge weekend before that, but I really doubted anyone wanted to read about that.

Once in awhile we score a perfect 10 on the dinner meal (breakfasts are so by rote, they don’t count). Last night was one of those gems, no lumpy potatoes or anything else gone awry. And what made it so rewarding is that much of what we cooked was new. We had a pastrami that needed to be served, and were at a bit of loss what to do with it. In case someone didn’t like pastrami, we had shrimp and sausage as an appetizer. That recipe calls for Zing Zang Bloody Mary mix, so we call them Bloody Mary Shrimp.

Mini grounded in snow & ice in Houston

Some of our hunters brought home pheasant for the pot, so Susan made her mother-in-law’s baked pheasant, heavy on the cream and butter. The pastrami was smoked for four hours and sides included roasted carrots and German potato salad. An apple strudel based on the one I had in Salzburg capped off the meal. It all garnered rave reviews and no leftovers to speak of. Susan and I went to bed happy.

We did have a four-day break this week. I went back to Houston just in time for the great winter storm of 2018. Amazing what a bit of sleet and snow and 25-plus hours of freezing temperatures can do to that city, but it only happens once a decade or so and no one is prepared for it. So one full day was spent trapped indoors when I’d hoped to be out and about catching up with friends in the big city.

I’ve been working on the cookbook on short kitchen breaks. Recipes are available upon request.

Typical lodge breakfast



  1. Paul Mendoza on January 22, 2018 at 1:09 pm

    So we both left the oil business for food?

    • Anne Leonard on January 22, 2018 at 1:53 pm

      I thought of you the other night and came to the same conclusion, although my ‘career change’ was involuntary. It was probably about the time one of our guests came in and suggested we needed a show on The Food Network. Today the third of three corporate retreats for the Ben E. Keith company come in. Then we have true chefs in the kitchen working with us.

Leave a Comment