Eric Rogers, Michael Girardot and Ryan Rogers from bands such as Antenna Inn, MyNameIsJohnMichael, Big Rock Candy Mountain and Rotary Downs have their hands in many pots.
Eric: I am eating breakfast, which is leftover hibachi. Filet mignon for breakfast, with scallops.
Michael: I had Cheerios.
Eric: I learned to cook by just watching other people. Ryan has been in the fine dining service industry for over seven years.
Ryan: Ten years now.
Eric: Jesus! Well, he’s always whipping up stuff around the house, and our dad always brought home fresh fish. Our stepfather’s a big grilling guy and I took to that more than baking or sautéing.
Ryan: You cook on the grill rather than on the stove.
Eric: I enjoy cooking large quantities of meat. A long time ago, a friend of mine had a party at his parents’ house, and I was craving ribs. I had never made ribs and I was like, “I think I can do that.” So we made a whole rack of beef ribs and everybody was raving about these ribs. They’re really simple, nothing complicated about them, but from that point on I was Eric Rogers the rib guy. People kept asking me to do them.
Ryan: I make the classic Creole sauces. Hollandaise and Bechamel and reduction sauces, or red tomato sauces, sauce tomate. I do the simple stuff. Beurre blanc—white wine and butter and lemon juice—is the quickest thing in the world.
Michael: I came up with a large family. My mom’s method of cooking was looking in the refrigerator, seeing what we had, and in about 20 minutes she would have the whole family fed. I also learned a lot from my grandma, who cooked a lot of food in large quantities. A few years ago, we started throwing potlucks at my house. It’s a good way to have a lot of people over, have a party and it doesn’t cost us a lot of money. We do it about once a month and it’s been going on for at least two years. I started making my grandmother’s corn pudding recipe for these potlucks and at this point, if someone comes to a potluck and there is no corn pudding…
Eric: …it’s a letdown. It’s quite the dish.
Michael: It’s really easy, but people seem to dig it, so I keep making it.
Ryan: I’m going to make a red cabbage and green apple coleslaw and add some ginger and call it Asian.
Michael: Aren’t you making something else as well?
Ryan: Just a roasted vegetable medley. Potlucks in the past, I’ve tried to go a little too gourmet on the crowd.
Eric: One time, Ryan comes late and brings baked pears with bacon and cheese on them.
Ryan: No, it wasn’t bacon. Prosciutto.
Eric: Oh, excuse me. Anyway, the kids and the uncultured palates didn’t like the prosciutto. Like me. There’s been hits, and there’s been misses. The ribs that didn’t turn out as good as others were ribs that were rushed. The best ones I’ve made I probably cooked for seven or eight hours.
Michael: I like putting a bunch of stuff in a pan and mixing it up and putting it in an oven. King Ranch Chicken is another dish. There is no ranch [dressing] in it. I think the name refers to a ranch. Basically, it’s chicken, a lot of cheese, tortillas, peppers and Rotel tomatoes.
Ryan: Our step-dad is from Lafayette, so he has a Cajun side to his cooking.
Michael: Tell the story of the deer, at your dad’s house.
Ryan: My dad hit a deer. It wasn’t destroyed and we don’t like to waste things, so we prepared the deer. I made deer roast and paneed deer.
Eric: It was a lot of deer.
Ryan: He hit the front quarter, but the back of the deer was still in mint condition. Fed a lot of people with that deer.
Michael: My kitchen is okay. But Ryan brought his own shredder and tongs and his own knife and knife sharpener and his own whisk.
Eric: And you brought salt!
Michael: He brought his own salt.
Eric [to Ryan]: Who doesn’t have salt? I’m insalted!
Michael: Hosting a potluck, most of the work involves cleaning up your house so it’s presentable. The great thing about corn pudding, I’ve gotten to where I can make it in about five minutes and stick it in the oven, which is great, when you’re trying frantically to make your house presentable and be a good host.
Eric’s Cajun Ribs
5 pounds meaty beef ribs
5 pounds meaty pork ribs
salt and black pepper
Paul Prudhomme’s Meat Magic
1 (quart) jar Jack Miller’s Barbecue Sauce (from Ville Platte, LA)
1 tablespoon (“butt-load”) Tabasco
1 bottle beer (Coors Original)
12 ounces bottle spicy brown mustard
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
Start the day before the party. Season ribs with salt, pepper and Meat Magic. Mix remaining ingredients into a marinade. Marinate ribs overnight in a covered container. The next day, line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Lift ribs out of the marinade and place on cookie sheet. Bake at 175-200 degrees for six-eight hours. Pour marinade into a saucepan and reduce it to about half. When ribs are ready, slather in warm sauce. Serve immediately.
Michael’s Grandmother’s Corn Pudding
1 stick butter
2 (14-ounce) cans creamed corn
2 (14-ounce) cans whole kernel corn
1 (8-ounce) box Jiffy corn muffin mix
½ cup light brown sugar
2 tablespoons honey
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a 13 x 9-inch Pyrex pan in the oven. Drain one can of whole kernel corn (leave liquid in the other one). Pour all ingredients into pan and mix with a fork until well blended. Bake for 45-50 minutes, until pudding wiggles like jello and no longer sloshes around.