Sunday, December 10, 2006

A Croque can make diaper talk worthwhile.

Have you ever eaten something so good that for the rest of the day you didn't want to put anything else in your mouth because you just wanted to SAVOR that flavor, texture, experience? It happened to me. Today. At BRUNCH.

Yes, I had Brunch (capital B) with some good girlie friends. It was at the original Lindey's and so urban. Picture the cute little NYC breakfast place that Jack Nicholson visits everyday in the film As Good As It Gets. You know, the one where he says, "There's Jews sitting at my table." And one of the accosted Jews is the actress who is now the head of the hospital on House, but I digress.

Well as I listened to my friends speak of their new babies, upcoming nanny interviews, upcoming babies (in like two weeks), and upcoming gallery openings, I felt like an adult and awfully shmancy. I didn't have as much to contribute, except for my dorky students who are taking over an online discussion forum that I started for them...and boy are they DORKS! Discussing the upcoming Eragon movie and new Nintendo Wiii.

So, I just sat back and enjoyed the ambiance, and then came my brunch. I ordered the Croque Madam and oh. my. God. I didn't have to hear anything else about disposable or cloth diapers and then cringe at the idea of WASHING diapers. You know. DiRtY diapers! (perhaps when I can focus on the money saved and not the poop, I'll be ready for a kid) I was all sated and just bathing in the richness of the Croque. (pronounced Croak, I think. Hopefully not Crock). It was a brioche, soaked in egg and cream, with ham and gruyere cheese. Topped then with a fried egg and then again with hollandaise. Did I say oh my God?? Because that is about all I can say to explain.

So moral: Lindeys...good croque madam. And I have a tiramisu in the fridge waiting for me later.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

I'm Back Baby!

So much to discuss, oh where to start!

Let's start with the bad and then get to the good. It is serious. It is really something to be concerned about. The topic. The concern. The issue:
Fat Women, Large Large Women, with...gasp...COUPONS!!

If you ever wonder when NOT to go to the grocery store, the answer is simple. With me. And with me on Sundays. Twice now I have been stuck behind evil coupon wielding bitches. Most recent occurrence was Giant Eagle two days ago. This event made me want to blog. So thank the amazon woman with a pile o' coupons for this post.

Now I had a bad coupon experience last time, which included mass coupons and price checks on clearance gum. So with the visit Sunday, I doubled checked that the lovely pregnant lady in front of me had NO coupons. Check. Little did I know, the woman in front of her, seemingly almsot done, and did I mention OH LARGE, was actually scanning the first part of her coupons. I think we could separate her coupon load into four parts. When I started unloading my cart, she was on part two. Then part three occurred as I watched people get in line behind me. Then before part four could occur, I kid you not, the manager had to come over to allow the rest of the coupons to go into the register. Literally, she hit the maximum for normal people, and went into coupon orbit with the rest.

"Dear Gawd Kristy, what was in the cart?" you ask. Cereal. Chips. Lotions. In essence, CRAP. Lots of high fat, high sugar, overly processed CRAP.

"What was in your cart, oh wise ass?" Apples, ground chicken, Birds Eye frozen vegetables at 10 for $10. No crap here, dammit! Well, some crap. Ranch Munchies for my lovey love.

Moral of the story, if you use coupons, and I mean USE THEM. Like piles of them. Go shopping at 1am. Don't inconvenience people willing to pay more because they value their time too much to waste their time on 50 cents off of THREE (yes, because my experience requires you to purchse multiples and the biatch in front of me Sunday proved that point too).

Onto the good stuff. The meal plan for this week is STELLAR! We had cannelloni last night. It was from Cooking Light. Here is the recipe, in bold is how I changed it to make it LESS good for us.
Cannelloni (Weight Watchers 8points for two)

1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed
Cooking spray
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 pound ground chuck
1/2 pound ground turkey I actually used ground chicken. It was cheaper.
1/4 cup egg substitute
5 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided Yeah right. 5 T! More like 1/2 cup.
1 1/4 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
(8-ounce) cans no-salt-added tomato sauce
1/8 teaspoon salt
12 cooked manicotti shells
White Sauce The white sauce calls for dried milk. uh, eww. I did 2T butter, 2T flour and about 1.5 cups milk. Beautiful. And I added some parmesan to that too.

Place spinach between paper towels, and squeeze until barely moist; set aside.
Place a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat until hot. Add onion and garlic; sauté 2 minutes. Add spinach; sauté 1 minute. Place mixture in a large bowl; set aside.
Combine ground chuck and turkey in skillet; cook over medium heat until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain and pat dry with paper towels; add to spinach mixture. Add egg substitute, 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper; stir well, and set aside.
Combine tomato sauce, 1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning, and 1/8 teaspoon salt in a bowl; spread 1 cup over bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 375º. Stuff each shell with 1/3 cup spinach mixture; arrange on top of tomato sauce mixture in dish. Pour remaining tomato sauce mixture over shells; spoon White Sauce evenly over tomato sauce mixture. Sprinkle with 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese. Cover and bake at 375º for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 2 stuffed shells with 1 tablespoon white sauce)


So the cannelloni rocked. But the pork cooked tonight for dinner by the husband was even better. It, also is from Cooking LIght. I picked out three recipes before my fateful grocery trip on Sunday. And then the webpage makes a grocery list for you. Quite nice!

Honey Hoisin Pork Tenderloin (weight watchers 4pts a serving):
2 tablespoons sliced green onions Didn't use this either, because it is green and TJ doesn't eat green things. Well, he doesn't eat onions either, but generally anything green is boycotted in our house (parsley, cilantro, garnishes far and wide).
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons sage honey Regular honey was just fine.
1 tablespoon hot water Uh, this was not used. Not sure where it was supposed to go. But he didn't do it.
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed
1/4 teaspoon salt
Cooking spray
1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds
Preheat oven to 400°.
Combine first 6 ingredients in a small bowl. Pour 1/4 cup honey mixture into a large zip-top plastic bag; reserve remaining honey mixture. Add pork to bag; seal and marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes, turning bag occasionally.
Remove pork from bag; discard marinade. Sprinkle pork with salt. Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add pork; cook 2 minutes, browning on all sides. Brush 1 tablespoon reserved honey mixture over pork; sprinkle with sesame seeds. Place skillet in oven. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160° (slightly pink) or until desired degree of doneness.
Place pork on a platter; let stand 5 minutes. Cut pork across the grain into thin slices. Drizzle with the remaining honey mixture. Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 3 ounces pork and about 2 teaspoons honey mixture)

CALORIES 195 (20% from fat); FAT 4.3g (sat 1.4g,mono 1.9g,poly 0.6g); PROTEIN 24.7g; CHOLESTEROL 74mg; CALCIUM 12mg; SODIUM 633mg; FIBER 0.5g; IRON 1.7mg; CARBOHYDRATE 13.6g

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Pork with Maple Mustard Glaze

Oh the deliciousness of last night's dinner. Oh the yummy smells. Oh the desire to lick the saute pan even with the searing burns that would occur on the tongue. Sidenote: your tongue heals faster than any other part of your body. Well your tongue and the whoo-whoo on a woman. So really, it would just be a temporary pain. Highly worth it so as not to waste yummy leftover pan bits.

The dinner was a joint effort. But really, my part in the effort was not the most important. I am humble enough to admit that the Pork with the Maple Mustard Glaze was not my creation. After the pork was cooked, the leftove pan goodness was deglazed with chicken broth and a splash of heavy whipping cream to create an amazing sauce. The sauce was then poured on top of the pork and mashed potatoes (my humble contribution).

Here is the recipe from Cooking Light. Now it probably wasn't all that light for US, because to the dearest one who shares my life, a teaspoon of butter is more like 1/3 stick. And "sauce serving" is 1 T of sauce. HA. I think I just peed laughing at that one. We poured the sauce we made; I dipped into the sauce. I think I licked the side of the measuring cup.

And if you don't like links:
Pork Chops with Maple Mustard Glaze

Maple syrup makes a fine stand-in for honey or sugar in sauces. Here, it adds a rich, sweet note to herbed mustard sauce. This sauce goes nicely with sautéed chicken breasts as well. 1 teaspoon butter
(4-ounce) boneless pork loin chops, trimmed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons heavy cream

Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle pork chops evenly with salt and pepper; add pork to pan. Cook 4 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Remove from pan; keep warm.
Add broth and next 4 ingredients (through thyme) to pan. Bring to a boil, and cook for 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in cream, and reduce heat to medium. Return pork to pan; simmer 3 minutes or until pork is done, turning once. Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 pork chop and about 1 tablespoon sauce)

NUTRITION PER SERVINGCALORIES 214(22% from fat); FAT 5.2g (sat 1.9g,mono 1.9g,poly 0.6g); PROTEIN 26.3g; CHOLESTEROL 68mg; CALCIUM 38mg; SODIUM 751mg; FIBER 0.3g; IRON 1.2mg; CARBOHYDRATE 14.6g

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Answer: Pizza Places Located at the Entrance of a Trailer Park.

Question: Where you should NOT buy pizza dough? (this is an homage to my Jeopardy love, as well as a shout out to my Father-In-Law)

I strolled into this pizza place called Lilman's. It is on the way home and they were kind enough to give me some ranch dipping sauce one other time when I was mildly unprepared for the dinner plans.

Now to me, Lilman's should be a Hebrew Bagel place, not a pizza joint. But this is Delaware Ohio people, and ethnic consistency flies out the window (mostly because the windows are covered with a garbage bag and duct tape).

At any rate, after the chica behind the bar had to ask the manager in the back, she giggles and brings out some pizza dough. It was only 3 dollars...but it was dry and kinda crappy, and ended up a little brick like. I think with pizza sauce et al it would have been fine...but I just wanted some garlicky cheeseness to accompany the Wedding Soup.

In the future, I'll try my luck with the yeast packets. But the idea that there is something alive in there just wigs me out.

Tonight a more normal plan: Syrian Rice and Lemon Chicken. I'm craving Pine Nuts.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Butternut Squash Ravioli...the night I wanted Cheerios.

*One large phallic shaped Butternut Squash
1 cup ricotta cheese (mascarpone works too)
WonTon Wrappers (I found these near the salad mix in the produce section)
Stick of butter
Sage (fresh), chopped (2 T ish)
chopped nuts if you like them
egg wash
boiling water

Roast el squash-o in a 375 oven for an hour or until soft; I spread butter over it too. Let it cool and then scrape out. Mash it, mash it good. Add ricotta and mix it up. Spoon onto wrapper, brush with egg, place wrapper on top.

chef's note: I think folding the wrapper over, is possibly the better way to go. It seems safer, and my won ton wrappers may have been a wee large.

Drop the little buggers into boiling water. They will float when they want out.

To make the Sage Brown Butter sauce, melt and cook the butter (a whole stick, minus what you spread on the squash for roasting). It will bubble and once it turns brown, drop in the fresh, chopped sage. IT will REALLY bubble and the sage will get crispy. ( Yes, this is the same sauce from the gnocchi. Yes, I am sick of it. TJ lurves it. I lurve him. ) I added nuts here too. They were a nice crunch.

Some crumbled gorgonzola would ROCK this out...but we had none.

They were great. They were rich. After all the time put into it, I wanted cereal instead.

In the future: these will be an appetizer of three raviolis. More than three and I think you get tired of them.

*This squash was HILARIOUS looking! And yes I walked around poking people with it when I purchased it at the Farmer's Market with Lisa, Jim, Barb, Brian, and TJ. I poked people in the rears. I also left it out on the counter for showings of our house, which is for sale. I wanted it to say, "We like fall and we have a sense of humor. Buy our house."

Thursday, October 12, 2006

What does 20 inches mean to you? The difference between Men and Women.

Weep blubber sigh.
You've missed the blog. I've missed you too.

A couple food events have occurred. Sunday, I baked. I baked so that our house would smell like apple pie. We are selling the house. I figured happy cooking smells would make people want to buy the house. Or at least give a reason for why there may be some stains on the stove..."holy cow. they actually cook in this kitchen!". After the pies, I made Banana Bread.

Parent teacher conferences were Monday. It is exhausting. But uneventful. TJ wanted to have dinner ready when I got home. We discussed just heating up a pizza from the freezer. I had a voicemail on my cell around the time i was leaving. I thought it was TJ trying to figure out the best way for the reheat. It wasn't. He was actually calling to say he was surprising me. He drove his little, wee, tiny, butt over to Whole Foods and got Portabella Mushroom Ravioli for us. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. So it was Meatless Monday. With an apple pie dessert.

Tuesday night was now TJ cooking night. I wanted to try to make gnocchis. I had never made them before. I found a Sweet Potato version, which I KNEW TJ would love. He wanted to try to make them too. So it was a joint venture. The recipe is next:

2 1-pound red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams), rinsed, patted dry, pierced all over with fork
1 12-ounce container fresh ricotta cheese, drained in sieve 2 hours
1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese (about 3 ounces)
2 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
2 teaspoons plus
2 tablespoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
2 3/4 cups (about) all purpose flour
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
6 tablespoons chopped fresh sage plus whole leaves for garnish

Line large baking sheet with parchment paper. Place sweet potatoes on plate; microwave on high until tender, about 5 minutes per side. Cut in half and cool. Scrape sweet potato flesh into medium bowl and mash; transfer 3 cups to large bowl. Add ricotta cheese; blend well. Add Parmesan cheese, brown sugar, 2 teaspoons salt, and nutmeg; mash to blend. Mix in flour, about 1/2 cup at a time, until soft dough forms.

Turn dough out onto floured surface; divide into 6 equal pieces. Rolling between palms and floured work surface, form each piece into 20-inch-long rope (about 1 inch in diameter), sprinkling with flour as needed if sticky. Cut each rope into 20 pieces. Roll each piece over tines of fork to indent. Transfer to baking sheet.

Bring large pot of water to boil; add 2 tablespoons salt and return to boil. Working in batches, boil gnocchi until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer gnocchi to clean rimmed baking sheet. Cool completely. (Can be made 4 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)

Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook until butter solids are brown and have toasty aroma, swirling pan occasionally, about 5 minutes. Add chopped sage (mixture will bubble up). Turn off heat. Season sage butter generously with salt and pepper. Transfer half of sage butter to large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add half of gnocchi. Saute until gnocchi are heated through, about 6 minutes. Empty skillet onto rimmed baking sheet; place in oven to keep warm. Repeat with remaining sage butter and gnocchi. Divide gnocchi and sauce among shallow bowls. Garnish with sage leaves. Makes 10 to 12 servings.

Stop drooling on your keyboard.

The making of the recipe was completely uneventful. I did the fork tong imprints, while TJ cut them. When we were rolling the dough into "20 inches", it was quite humorous to see the difference in our interpretation of 20inches. I was optimistic, thinking 20 inches was much longer than TJ's pessimistic version. Come to realize, he was right. My size assumptions have been sadly wrong. Is it based on my height? Do I want 61 whopping inches to be taller than it is? Or does a guy want "20 Inches" to be shorter? Hmm. Deep thoughts. Possibly toward the dirty.

We had tons of gnocchi. We froze a couple more meals worth. And it seems like a cheap dinner. And did you KNOW Sage is furry and kinda smells like PINE? I was worried, but when cooked it tastes different. Thank GOD!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Mark it down. Monday, October 2nd, TJ took a step into the kitchen and made dinner. It started when he called, from the grocery store, and said, "I was thinking I'd cook dinner tonight."

Sweet! So I asked him, "Where are you?"

"Giant Eagle"

"Okay, they have Salmon on sale, if you want to get that." And then the conversation ended with the customary pleasantries.

Phone rings

"I'm not at Giant Eagle. I am at Walmart."

I say, of course, "Well don't get salmon THERE!" The horror of walmart fish! Something just seems bizarre about buying stereos, fertilizer, and salmon all in the same place.

He says, "I already did. It looks fine."

p ause.

"uh, okay" Again with the pleasantries. (mmm, pastries)

Phone rings

"I need you to come pick me up. My car won't start. "

GAH! Why does he try and do something so sweet and wonderful and get punished? Why Buddha why?

But the calmness came through. We handled this as we usually do, fairly calmly. $65 later for a tow, we are home and he actually still wanted to cook dinner!

I wish I could go moment by moment and giggle at his little trials as he cooked. Truth be told, he did one funny thing and there was only one loud bang, followed by the vacuum sucking up whatever was then on the floor.
The funny thing: for bread crumbs, he toasted an English Muffin and then started scraping it. I then got the food processor out and he did it that way.
Loud Bang: cookie sheet that was in the oven already. He said immediately, "It's all good!"

And as with any cook, he was more critical of his concoction than I. He thought it lacked flavor and was troubleshooting for next time as he ate. I thoroughly appreciate that, and often do the same thing. It was, however, very good! I mean, he never cooks, and a salmon with an ALMOND CRUST, people, is a LOFTY goal for a first timer, and he did great!!

The most beautiful thing said during this excursion: "I want to cook once a week." Yes!!

Monday, September 25, 2006

There are no words...

But really, have I ever been able to have NO WORDS?

This is just wrong. And what are the toppings? Green chop sticks, a spool of red thread, and some pennies. I think the other red globs are blood stains. And that baby is NOT actually wearing it because that is one creepy smiling baby with a badly photoshopped hat.

This costume is available at for your lovely cherub at the bargain price of 24.99, followed by thousands of dollars in therapy because your kid has a serious fear of, well, being stuffed into a pizza crust. Imagine, a child who won't touch pizza! Devastating.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Last Meal Tells All

I found this webpage, because a post on The Nest for a free book that foodies would love. As I consider myself a foodie, and I like free stuff, I handed over my info in hopes that a free book will arrive at my house. Upon its arrival and it being read, I'll post a review; don't worry.

Any who, the author is a chef and pretty well known and has his own show, although I have never seen it. TIVO will be utilized tonight so that I may better acquaint myself. The point is coming, I promise. If you venture to read any of those links up there, you will see a section where he discusses what good food really is. In fact, he compares it to the "If you were on death row, what would you want your last meal to be?" game. We've all played. If you haven't, I am not sure why you are reading my blog and what is wrong with you? But he says that the last meals are very rarely, even in 5 star chefs, some elaborate gourmet meal. It is ultimately the most comforting food item. Or for girls, the FATTENING food item that you would only eat with the knowledge that the calories or effect on the hips will not better because, hello, you are going to be dead!

This rant leads to this...good food is oh so good. But it isn't what heals us or often what we truly splurge on.

My last meal:
a whole pepperoni, pineapple, banana pepper pizza (is it bad that I sing the Gwen Stefani song in my head to spell banana correctly??)
extra sauce on the side
garlic cheesy bread
alfredo sauce
Dairy Queen banana split with no pineapple, extra strawberry sauce
bottle of Chianti

This would be my last meal according to TODAY. It may change. I now encourage you to respond with your own choices.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Don't fret my pet!

Oh my avid blog readers. I wasn't so much sad as I was Writing Blocked.

I guess for a while I was on such a writing high, with people reading and telling me I was witty and what not. But then I didn't feel so witty anymore. And felt like I was just complaining all the time. I fear what you all would think when I was feeling really sad. I shudder at the thought like the hyenas shuddered when Moustafa's name was mentioned in The Lion King.

So onward and upward, right? I had a rip roaring time at BW3s last night. I also discovered that Boneless Wild Wings makes me very thirsty. Like wake up in the middle of the night thirsty after just having a dream about drinking mass quantities of water thirsty. And then TJ is all, "Are you okay?" as I am stooping eeirily at the end of the bed searching through my gym bag where I hoard free bottled water from the gym.

Yes, I have a Water Membership, not a Gym membership. I belong because they provide bottled water for members, and I can take one with me on the way home for later. So really, I pay for water and can work-out for free, baby!

Off topic, sorry. We played trivia with Brian and Barb, lovely friends of ours, and I learned:
not sure what useless facts I learned

Wild Wings make me thirsty?

I'll leave you with a haiku:

Peeing while drinking
Does feel oddly connected
I dare you to try

Thursday, September 14, 2006

This is who I am. This is what I do.

I have been feeling especially paranoid lately and it has caused me not to blog. The little voice in my head is all, "These people do not give two shits about what you had for dinner." or "They do not want to hear AGAIN about the crappy service you had at a restaurant." I swear I do not complain all of the time! But I get paranoid that I am always especially complimentary of myself and oh so critical of everyone else.

But then I think, "Yes, I am a bitch. Who cares?" Ha! I care so much that I tell myself I don't. It is like when the bath water gets so hot that it almost feels incredibly freezing on your skin as it turns it dark shades of scary red. I care so much it becomes not caring.

I fooled my husband with this for awhile. He thought I didn't care and he could joke or say what he wanted and it wouldn't matter, "Because man she is tough!" Oh the wicked web we weave...For our marriage, thank God he knows the truth now. I am as strong as my chili is spicy (another problem that I have. I mean, do I actually have to put jalapenos in there??).

In the same way that I tackle not remembering someone's name (I just tell them, "I'm sorry, but you are now Cody, because damn you do not look like a Logan."), I am tackling my writing issues.

Oh, and I love TJ with all my heart and it was he who suggested we use Chex Mix to make breadcrumbs for the fish crust. There, I admitted it. I feel much better now.

Friday, September 08, 2006

C is for Cookie

I heard a student say "Veggie Monster" yesterday. Is that really a new character on Sesame Steet? Veggie Monster? I mean, the essence of Cookie Monster was the irony of the name. Kids are not going to be scared of a Cookie Monster! But a veggie monster, they may indeed run screaming from. I know what I thought brussel sprouts smelled like as a child! They smelled like my dad's flatulence. And they smelled like my dad's flatulence because my dad LOVES brussel sprouts! I would run from that monster too! Now, my dad would also turn his eyelids inside out along with his lower lip turned over. Scary.

Subconsciously, I took this Sesame Street conversation home with me and made cookies! I baked Oatmeal Chocolate chip Peanut Butter Cookies. The biggest bonus, all of the ingredients were already in my cupboard! Because I am scared to death to go to crazy neighbor Sam's house to borrow a cup of sugar. Do people still do this? I wish they would! Mostly because there are times when I NEED something.

The cookies are very soft. I think they may need a wee more flour. Click on the link and it will take you to the recipe. And if you have a Kitchen Aid Mixer, this will take you all of 5 minutes to make.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Bison Balls for Everyone!

First, there is a new webpage called Bake Space. It is like MySpace but for people who cook. It is quite cool, quite new, so get on it! My name or profile or whatever on there is Kristylynn (so unique). If you want me to be a Kitchen Helper, you can add me, just like MySpace.

I included on my Bake Space page the recipe for Bison Meatballs. I made these Tuesday night and they rocked! One thing I normally do not care for in meatballs is that gritty dryness they can get. I use milk soaked bread in leiu of breadcrumbs, and it really keeps the meatball moist. Note: I HATE the word moist, so if I use it, you know it must be for damn good reason.

A good meatball has: garlic, parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs or my tricky milk soaked bread, parsley, egg, and any other special herb you may like. I had some basil around, so I chopped that up. I also had a little bit of Bob Evans Hot Sausage, so I put that in with the ground buffalo meat. Good meatball rollers (you know, the people that are good at handling and rolling the balls without over working, making them too small or big, making them too oily) will mix the meatball 'slop' with their hands so that it gets mixed evenly. We also know that it takes a little olive oil on your hand so that the meat rolls and sticks to itself, and not to your hands.
Note: the funniest part of the parenthetical innuendo is my mother in law reads this. Hi!

My point in having no recipe here is that, like me, you can just have a basic understanding of what a meatball generally IS, and then run with it! I had 1.25 lbs buffalo and added maybe an ounce or so of sausage, one egg and tossed in some of the other stuff and it made 15 meatballs the size of golf balls. Perfect for two people and then leftovers.

And because you read my blog, you get the little secret that makes my meatballs so extra great: fresh mozzarella stuffed in the middle. It is a nice creamy goo center. Mmmm, warm creamy goo. (Austin Powers fans: "Warm liquid goo phase")

What was the gum with the goo in the middle? I think there was even a Dr. Pepper flavored goo.

And I'm spent.

Monday, September 04, 2006

My Experiment with Fish Crust

I had these lemon potatoes at Tria once. Tria is a greek restaurant whose side dishes are lemon loaded (ohhh, nice band name). So I took a stab at the potatoes tonight. I tossed Idaho potatoes with olive oil and lemon juice (2 lemons), added salt and dry oregano and baked at 400 for about 50 minutes. I forgot to MUST put chicken broth in the bottom of the dish so the potatoes do not dry out. And check as they cook. If the broth goes magically away, add more!!

Ah yes. The fish crust. I am a bit picky on waste. So the bowl I tossed the potatoes in with the lemon juice was also used for the salmon. I put two pieces of salmon in the bowl, added a bit more salt and oregano, and flopped it around (technical term). Then placed on a baking pan in the same 400 degree oven. After baking for about 5 minutes, I added a crust. The crust was made with pine nuts, three basil leaves, one garlic clove, chex mix, and a couple tortilla chips.

Huh? Chips? Chex? So a while back TJ and I were in need of bread crumbs. So we took the mini chopper jobby (little food processor) and put some left over spicy chex mix and blended. It worked! So for my crust tonight, I tried the pine nuts blended with some basil and garlic. It was too oily. Nut oil or something. So I added some tortilla chips...yay, notsomuch. So I added chex mix. Perfect! I then pressed it onto the salmon. And the dinner was a huge success.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Lisa made new friends last night. She commented on the age of a couple sitting across the wine tasting table from her, and then to make it okay, mentioned her cellulite. Cellulite, apparently, quite ironically, can easily smooth over the uncomfortable comments on age.

In a profession of elders, I've made the comment, "You are older than my dad." And then my department chair looked menacingly at me, realizing if he found me cute it could be construed as creepy.

After tasting 8 different wines, the cellulite comment ensued, and lead eventually to a piciture of her ass. Now my camera, if you recall, is broken. This photo was taken with a verizon cell phone (I now have their phone number btw and the man's name is George), emailed to Lisa, and then emailed to me. Of course it is now here.

How was the wine tasting at Spagio? Well, after tasting 8 wines and just a little food, Lisa was willing to bend over and have a picture of her supposed cellulite taken. What do you think??

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Amul India: The best in strip mall cuisine.

I forgot to defrost meat. As I type, I am realizing I forgot to do it again today. But my solution yesterday to this quandry was going out for Indian food. I haven't had Indian food in years and wanted to try it again. So I did some research, and found this small restaurant located in a Sawmill Road strip mall. The mall is a ghost town, as a new and improved Stip Mall has popped up across the street!

We arrived to the restaurant and there was one other couple dining. They looked like people who would know good Indian food. Young, hip, you know, people that would eat trendy food. After they left, we were the only ones there. This is sad, and I had a flash of Aboo and his Pakistani cuisine on Seinfeld. If you are familiar, have a small chuckle here in remembrance of his long finger shaking back and forth ("Very bad man. You are a very bad man.").


And continuing on...

Chicken Tikka Masala.
This is a photo of the dish I ordered. It is a photo from the recipe on how to make it, in case you are curious. It looks good! And it was good! The restaurant serves the saucey chicken with rice. And we did ask for more rice, and it arrived with no charge.

You can dictate your spice, I went with 'medium', and it wasn't too spicy at all. The sauce is excellent for dipping the nan bread in. Nan is pita like, but softer and even better.

TJ had Chicken Makhani, which apparently is also known as "Indian Butter chicken". Yum! Looks similar. Tastes a little the same. But his was hotter. Our server, who I think was also the owner, told TJ to get this. TJ tried to order Tandoori Chicken, and the server said, "No. Number 8". We were like, okay, number 8 then, and that was Chicken Makhani. Then, when TJ said, "Medium Hot" for his spiciness, the server tried to say no again. But we pressed on and were permitted to get "medium hot" chicken. TJ's was spicy, but not too spicy for either of us. I think I actually liked his dish a little better because his chicken was more in white meat chunks, whereas mine was a little different. But both dishes were great!

I also had Mango Juice, which is great if you are eating spicy food because it takes the hot right away. So good!

Grand Total with Tip: $33. Nice! I wish we lived closer. I'd get take out!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Thespian Notes:AKA The day I get to talk about the origin of Lesbian

Quick Note: I have been accused of not blogging enough. Sadly, I was accused by a LURKER. What is a lurker, you ask? It is someone who reads without commenting. Every blogger has an issue with this. They actually commission "DeLurker Days", hoping for comments or even just a "hello!"

School started last week. Good times. I have six classes with a grand total of 118 students. They seem smiley and eager to participate. A couple seem like wastes of good desk space, but it is early. I am sure there are more :)

I have a fairly diverse group of students, at least diverse for the district I am in. In each class, there is at least ONE student who is either Asian, Black, or Multi. Literally, this is what my class lists state under "ethnicity" of the student. I have yet to determine what multi may mean. What would TJ be listed as? I'd like to see the multiple choice options on the "Student Information" sheet that they use for this.
a. White
b. Asian
c. Multi
d. Black
e. Bitter
f. Downtrodden
g. Able to Pass as White

Today we talked about the history and evolution of Theatre. In early Greek Theatre there was a competition and one of the plays IN the competition was a Satyr Play. Struggling to describe gently the idea that characters dressed as half goat/half man beasts with extra large male genitalia and then ran around poking each other with it, because how can you explain this to a group of 15 year olds without being BLUNT, I started with it being a shorter play that was just a "break from the sadness of the tragedies." One astute lad said, "It is like the halftime show!"

small pause

By Zeus, it is! And I was able to say, "Actually, you are absolutely right! And the halftime show with Justin Timberlake and seeing Janet Jackson's BOOB is the best comparison!" Did I fail at being gentle?

Thespis was an early playwright, and now we have Thespians, people who follow Thespis. Lesbos was an island; those who lived there were Lesbians. They also were mostly women poets following Sappho, also a woman poet. Many of the poems did not paint men in the nicest light. Lesbos housed Sappho and her quorom of angry female we have Lesbians. Why do I teach this? Because simply saying "Thespian" makes 15 year olds giggle. So I set them straight. I pretend I am not ashamed of teaching this and "sure go tell your parents. I don't care!" But then I hurridly erase the word "Lesbian" off the board. Scary word...lesbian. Actually, the word isn't scary. But the crazy ultra-religious fools are scary. And I like to eat.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Lindey's German Village

I love their patio! The food was, well, eh. The wine was decent and decently priced, and the company was awesome.

Salad was normal. Although the champagne vinagrette seemed overly vinegar-y.

I had the sole special with lemon caper sauce. Sauce was excellent, sole was not my type of fish. Thin, flakey, and I think mine was undercooked with some mush. The other dinners seemed to have decent luck. Although the yellow fin tuna was over cooked, but it was a Special also, so perhaps they weren't 'used to' it?? I don't know! I feel bad because DAMN I love the patio!

Tiramisu was not good. I love a good soaked tiramisu where you can get a coffee buzz from the soaked lady finger layer. No real coffee taste at all. And you know how has awesome tiramisu? Whole Foods!

I didn't have to pay for the dinner because it was actually part of a research study. So I can't complain too much. My four friends and I met with three people from Proctor and Gamble to speak of hair products. It was hilarious, as we talked about everything, with a little hair thrown in. Thankfully none in the food.

I am whipped after a whole DAY of school. I don't feel like my blog is humorous today, so I am stopping.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Breakfast Recipe: Goddess Omelette

Let's talk about my breakfast today. Probably one of my last opportunities to cook for myself before going back to school.

I had the Goddess of all Omelettes. I believe omelettes are feminine..eggs and whatnot. It contained: red peppers, cherry tomato, red onion, and Feta Cheese. All cheeses should be capitalized. They are just important that way. Oh, and then I brushed some pesto on top.

Drool? Good.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Haikus for Yous

smooshed frog on the ground
baked crunchy and black, made me
drop the nail polish

Well we are trying to sell our house. One smartass realtor, after bringing a client through the house, recommended we put some "color" in the front yard. Now there is OPI "Its My Party Purple" on the driveway. There's your color, bitches!

There are no pictures for this post. But there is a review of a fun evening that we had last night. We attended the Wine Festival at Bon Vie. It was $30 a person, included 5 tastings (good sized pours by the way) and a smattering of passed horse ovaries. I do not wish to spell or look up the spelling of that word that begins: hors. There was a cheese tray with brie, bleu cheese, white american ( I remarked it tasted like a Kraft Single), and another with a red vein running through it. There was smoked salmon on a slice of cucumber, which I have never liked cucumbers and after attemting a bite, I can safely say I still do not. The slice of bread with fresh mozz on a tomato was much more my style. These little pizzas that tasted like quiche, which prompted TJ to ask, "Do you want a little quiche?" and then giggle.

Next was something that I would not recommend to be passed without a fork or plate. A mussel, still attached to the shell, with a crab breading baked on top. It did not slide into your mouth. You can't bite it off the shell, because, well, who would want to? You have to pull it off, and even then, it doesn't come in one piece. You get this circular rubbery piece, that I can only equate to a flat bicycle tire. And then you are supposed to put it in your mouth. But really, do you WANT to put something that looks like THIS in your mouth?

Sadly, I don't want to mention this next part. There were little legs of lamb. They looked delightful. We saw them come out once, and Mary didn't bring it over to us. And then they never appeared again. TJ was distraught about the lamb. Didn't stop pining over the lamb. Even told the waitress we named Mary that he would love it the next time they came out. Instead, she brought us the last chocolate mousse on her tray. Mousse and Lamb...not even close. Perhaps there should be a haiku for this too:

Mary had a tray of lamb
You went right past us
You are now a lambless Ho.
Even the small creme brulees that were passed next couldn't silence TJ. They couldn't silence his inner need for the lamb. Silence the Lamb.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Ready for this Jelly

For a good laugh, please check this out. It is a compilation of old Weight Watchers Recipe Cards. Here is a sample:

The author of the webpage, dare it be a BLOG, comments with great cleverness about the props in the photos, as well as the easy jokes about the names and/or ingredients included. For this photo, I draw your attention to the scary Mushroom People, gazing eeirily at the plate.

This next photo is what I call, "TJ's Food Nightmare". He has an inexplainable disgust for green food items. Parsley pisses him off. Unnecesary garnish has been known to cause a whole appetizer of Steamed Mussels back, because "This was not listed on the menu as part of the dish."


Dublin OHio is the location of the largest Irish Festival in the WORLD! Okay, I made that up. It may be true. I haven't seen it on the Food Channel yet, and if it were true, you'd think it would be featured on the bible of all food and festivals. (Sidenote: bible tv, all bible, all the time. Only programs are ACTING OUT the bible...interesting)

We attended the Irish Festival last night. Holy Hugeness Batman! I had no idea it was so large! And there is a food called "Bangers". What?! We did not try the banger. We had the old stand by Fish and Chips. While standing in line, I took these pictures:

This is Lisa and Jim. Lisa is the commentor that posted about people chasing her with peaches. Perhaps they want to shove those peaches in her pie hole. Is it shameless that I just laughed at that.

Then this is TJ; I clearly have drank/drunk/been drinking some Killians, but really, that face I am making just hides-no distracts from- the enormous pimple--singular? no pimples-- under my lip. As well as reminds me that I could never make someone kiss me by making that ridiculous lip pout.

Yes we had a grand old time. I will say that the "Token System" for buying beers is a SCAM! It bets on the fact that people will get just too sleepy to drink as many tokens as you buy and then you are left with useless tokens and no cash. I call "Shenanigans!"

And I will leave you with a tune..."Oh Danny boy. The pipes the pipes are calling. From glen to glen, and down the mountainside..." Who are the pipes? What do you put into these pipes so that you can shut them up? Because if they keep calling, Danny is going to leave, and he is just a boy, afterall!

Friday, August 04, 2006

Oh No She Didn't

(Insert obnoxious head swerving and finger snapping)

I threatened to post pictures of my arms. Okay, here are pictures of one arm at a time. Don't pull punches...tell me the truth. But you may want to take into consideration my arm size before deciding if you want to punch. I mean, I'm freakishly strong, yo.

Before: At Texas vs. Ohio State game last September. The lovely hair twin is my sister in law.

After: This is a picture from the Reunion.

Now, they don't look bigger, right? They don't look much smaller, but I'll take that over BIGGER!

And finally, they aren't manly, right? Here is an androginous picture in a wife beater. Can you tell it is a girl arm and not a scary man one? It isn't a girl arm ONLY because of a lack of arm hair, right? Because honestly, in person, my arms are quite hairy. But that is another set of pictures all together. Oh, and I am SOOO flexing. Here is a free ticket to the GUN SHOW.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Adventures in Baby Pictures

This, my friends, is a summary of my childhood. The baby is my sister Cori. Bawling. And my mom is glowing. And I am the large head in the foreground. Shut up. I think the bangs look cute and cut down on the largeness of my noggin'.

My grandmother says that I was so easily amused and it was a blessing because my sister was such an attention whore. Oh yes. Babies can be whores. She cried a lot. As she grew up, she still loved the attention and is a talker now as proof. She will talk for hours. TJ jokes that she would keep talking even if you left the room. As Cori and I have gotten closer, this is really an endearing trait and not an annoying one. I swear.

Here is where I look inward on all of this. I have been told in the last couple months that I LOVE attention. That I need attention. Is it possible that I gave up all of the attention in childhood for my sister and now it is time to make up for it?

I became a teacher and have a captive audience. Literally Captive! They are, by law, required to be in my room for 45 minutes a day, where I can tap dance and teach and they must LOOK AT ME! I love my job. The time I get with these teenagers is really quite enjoyable and I do not use it to teach my own personal agenda. Contrary to a certain frustrating member of the School Board's belief that we English teachers have a MOTIVE, I just want kids to love to read and learn about things that they may have never seen in Powell f-ing Ohio.

Aside from the goals to keep them in line and ready for the next year's classes and college,
I want my students to:
1. leave knowing they saw something new in themselves and the world
2. leave wanting to learn more about at least ONE topic
3. leave looking fondly back and not thinking I am psycho, although crazy is not that necessarily bad.
hmmm, I'll add more as I think of them.

Enough Pedagogical some FOOD!!

I ate leftover potstickers today because I didn't want TJ to get sick if he ate them. Leftovers sometimes harm his delicate system! I was so selfless and ate those pesky potstickers. This is what I tell myself so I do not feel guilty for eating them at 11am. At least my lunch was a nice whole wheat tortilla with turkey, tomato, onion, red pepper, and low fat cheddar cheese!

But I am going to meet my friend Shanna at Applebees for happy hour. Half Price Appetizers! Sidenote: Many bloggers throw in "bitches" after statements that are fun or jealousy invoking. Was that an appropriate place?? Let's try it. Half Price Appetizers, Bitches!! Hmm...not sure.

There is a storm a comin'. I need to post before it all goes terribly wrong.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Blogging Take 2

I have done this before. It was fairly therapeutic but turned into me bitching and wasn't that great for those I loved. I am trying again.

This summer I took a break from my marriage. There were many things good and bad about it, but the BEST thing about it was it showed me how much I love my husband. The method to discover this was not ideal. My motto now is From This Moment On. And we are working on becoming stronger. Learning from our mistakes. And of course we are in therapy! As my good friend Jess says, "Everyone should go to therapy." So all of you...GO!

I am afraid I missed the best reason to have a chronicle my 10 Year High School reunion. Poop. I am going to backtrack a wee in order to get some of that leftover angst out that remains after this event. It was so overwhelming. I talked to people I really should've just waved at. I waved at people that I probably should've spoken to. And I drank too fast, making me oh so sleepy with time to spare. There were requisite bald guys, fat guys, but really no chicks that got huge. Bummer. There was the one girl who came back looking AMAZING, and of course the guys that drooled shamelessly over her. But when she opened her mouth to speak, with my eyes closed, I would've still been able to pick out who it was. I think everyone, in true High School fashion, were all just a bit too self-conscious to actually enjoy ourselves. After 30 does that get better? I hope so!

Ah self esteem. It is not a young adult/teenager problem. I need me some attention, and hence the title of El Bloggo. My chef skeels gives me attention. And I can show love by making the kitchen a disaster area with the grease splatters on the backsplash, (a word whose meaning is RIGHT there staring you in the face!) chicken guts stuck to the sink, and flour in crevices that will never be dislodged. But damn it's good! So with this blog, I hope to share my food excursions, look into marriage, and hopefully, in a year or so, my attempts at trying to conceive. I will, however, never say, "We are trying tonight." Or "I am ovulating and my temps are..." I am putting it in writing so people may hold me to that. Or call me a hypocrite at some point in the future. But whatever.

So what is for dinner you ask? Ha! We are going to get sub sandwhiches at a little sub/pizza place and we are going to eat outside by a man-made body of water that occasionally has coffins float to the surface in it. Yum!