Those of you who have been readers for a while now might remember that time I prattled on and on about how much I love WE Tv’s reality show Marriage Boot Camp. I’m about to do that again. If you’re not up to speed on all the things I love about it, you can check it out here
I keep it no secret that I have a sizable lady crush on the series’ matriarch and Empress, Elizabeth Carroll. Even she knows this– maybe she’s even tired of hearing about it by now. Regardless, there’s no end in sight. Last time I did a MBC-themed menu, I posted this picture. This is my all-time favorite dress that I’ve seen Elizabeth wear. 

jim and elizabeth

I bring this up because I am now the proud owner of that very dress– not a similar dress. Not a duplicate of that dress. THAT DRESS. Elizabeth just sent it to me and it’s sitting on my kitchen table still in its box. Honestly, I have yet to digest the reality that it’s here, and I need to wrap my mind around that before I can break the cardboard and be in its presence. I think it will happen later today after a glass of wine and a brief period of meditation.
Before I watch the season 5 premiere of Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars next Friday night, I will probably need similar mental preparation, though for different reasons. Every episode is a wild ride through the cast’s pain, drama, and most personal moments. I’ve always loved how Elizabeth & Jim so relentlessly push their Campers to get real, and to show what’s ugly in themselves, their pasts, and their relationships.  This round is no different; it looks like we’re in for QUITE a season.

You know what lightens the mood? Snacks.
Tune in to the new season this coming Friday, June 3rd at 9/8c and have this theme-fitting menu ready to go! Let’s start with the main course.

Memphitz BBQ

I decided to go with ribs and wings, both slathered in a Memphis-style bbq sauce, which is fairly heavy on tomato, very smoky and has a brown sugary sweetness to it. You can choose whatever meat you prefer.

Ribs WWM

wings and ribs WWM

wings 2 wwm

wings 1 WWM

ribs 2 WWM

Brittish Scones

brittish scones WWM

True British scones are different from what we’re familiar with in the states. Here, scones are more dense, flaky, sweeter, and are usually loaded with butter. 
English scones are lighter and have a more cake-y texture much closer to a Southern-style biscuit. That works perfectly for this application since it will go great with the BBQ.
You can add some fresh herbs into the dough, or even a little Stilton blue cheese to make it a little extra British. Here’s the recipe I used:

cups all purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt, OR 1/2 tsp table salt
tablespoons butter, diced and slightly softened
cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 small handful parsley, chopped
4 oz. crumbled Stilton (optional)

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Pulse flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in food processor until combined. Add butter and pulse until fully incorporated and mixture looks like very fine crumbs. Transfer mixture to large bowl.

 Whisk milk and eggs together in second bowl. Set aside 2 tablespoons milk mixture. Add remaining milk mixture, parsley, and crumbled cheese to flour mixture and stir to coat the cheese crumbles. Using rubber spatula, fold together until almost no dry bits of flour remain.

Transfer dough to well-floured counter and gather into ball. With floured hands, knead just until surface is smooth and free of cracks. Press gently to form disk. Using floured rolling pin, roll disk to about 1 inch thick. Using floured 2 1/2-inch round cutter, cut out 8 rounds. Re-coat cutter with flour if it starts to stick. Arrange scones on prepared baking sheet. Gather dough scraps, form into ball, and knead again gently until surface is smooth. Roll dough to 1-inch thickness and cut out 4 rounds. 

Just before baking, brush tops of scones with reserved milk and egg mixture. Reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees and bake scones until risen and golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Allow to cool at least 5-10 minutes. Serve scones warm or room temp.

brittish scones and wings WWM

Lisa’s T’amato Salad

tomatoes biscuit ribs WWM

_MG_8440

I halved some cherry tomatoes, then sprinkled on some kosher salt, black pepper, and dried minced garlic. It’s not too strong and it re-hydrates very quickly! Then I added some chopped parsley, though basil would work very well, and drizzled on a little EVOO. After tossing and letting it sit for about 5 minutes, it was a great little side dish! Bear in mind, you could serve t’amato soup, t’amato pies, roasted t’amatoes, or even some stuffed t’omatoes instead. 

Adam’s Apples

So simple. Just cut an apple into slices or wedges, and toss the pieces in lemon water to slow browning. 
In a bowl, combine 1/4 c brown sugar and 1 Tbsp ground cinnamon. Press one or both sides of the apple into the cinnamon sugar. Insert a skewer, and serve immediately. As you can see I garnished the plate with a little extra sprinkling of cinnamon.
These can act as a dessert, snack, or appetizer.

adams apples WWM
 

Michelle’s Money

(chocolate coins)

Ah, Michelle Money. I’m a big Bachelor fan as well, and she’s easily one of my favorite stars to come from the franchise. I cannot wait to learn more about her this season.

chocolate coins 2 WWM

Tara-misu

tiramisu and coins WWM

tiramisu close up WWM
More like Tara-mess-u, amiright?
(Tara, if you’re seeing this, I’m sorry. That wasn’t kind.)
 

Wedding Rings

Peach Rings WWM
 
Or you could go the Ring Pop route.
 
unrapped ring pops WWM
 

Lorenzo’s Candy Basketballs

Marriage Brut Camp

marriage brut camp WWM

Take it from someone who has been watching the show since the beginning: you really will need a drink while you watch. Even Tara lets us know she needs a shot of tequila.
“Brut” (not to be confused with Extra Brut, Brut Natural, etc.) essentially means there’s a mild sweetness to the wine, but it is still more dry than sweet. 

love wine topper

IMG_8667

You can also use some of my ideas from last year, like Jim’s fried chicken or Better Than Sex cake. 

Fried Chicken pieces WWM

BTS cake cut into WWM

And then there’s my favorite: The “Something Blue” cocktail, which is a bow to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth. No, not that one. Queen Carroll, duh.
The original cocktail was somewhat seasonal for last fall’s premiere, and used Blue Curacao and cranberry Sprite. I would suggest swapping out the Sprite for some Marriage Brut Camp and adding a splash of pineapple juice. 
Alternatively, you could do my Blueberry Donut Martini, but for me, it doesn’t deliver the true blue color I want.

Something Blue WWM

 

And last but not least, an ode to Jim, Elizabeth, Ilsa, and David– because they are:

 
lifesavers WWM
 

marriage boot camp logoFriday June 3rd at 9/8c.
Check out the Marriage Boot Camp book, on sale on Amazon. I have it and I love it!
Live-tweet with me during the show! I’m @theotherpovey.

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