May 12, 2013
HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY to Cop Car
April 20, 2013
April: The Month for Family Birthdays
Happy Birthday to Cop Car who is a somewhere around legal drinking age now.
Also, a big Happy Birthday to Fantastic Niece - her birthday was a couple of days ago, but since she rarely (if ever) reads this blog, won't know that the internet BD wishes were a couple of days late. Her card should have arrived in time anyway.
February 24, 2013
Spaghetti Squash CasseroleAunt Helen saves me from having nothing to blog about. I clicked on her blog and scrolled thru some recipes until I found a video of her on a TV show (the recipe is here). This is a really easy recipe (even I should be able to follow it) and can easily be made into a wheat-free version by using corn meal instead of bread crumbs. I think I will have to try it for dinner tonight if I can find spaghetti squash!
December 24, 2012
Food and Toy for the Big Day
The mail produced an awesome package, Meats from Dudette and Wichi Dude. Okay, they had the meats sent from Omaha Steaks, but that does not diminish the expectations we have of eating well in the near future!
December 16, 2012
Nothing like getting home to a box on the porch - and the box is filled with homemade Christmas cookies from Cop Car! Although the pictures are horrid, the food is great!
There are Almond horseshoes (obviously not in a horseshoe shape), some kind of cookies that I can never remember the names to, and Fudge - lots of fudge. AND, not your ordinary fudge but things like Almond Joy fudge, Dark Chocolate fudge, Heathbar fudge, and Chery Cranberry Pecan fudge.
Rest assured that it is all delicious and very much appreciated!
December 01, 2012
A Little Promoting
The best cook in our family has put out another cook book, European Tarts: Divinely Doable Desserts with Little or No Baking. There is also a great write up on her, her professional history, some family history, and the book. Part of the write up shares the fact that she and her husband recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary - WOW!
And, for a lady that is past retirement age (who clearly cannot slow down enough to retire), she is very communication savey. She has a blog, the Ardent Cook, a Face Book Page and I see she is on Pintenterest too.
If you love to cook, know someone who loves to cook, or are even interested in finding some recipes that make you look like a genius, while not having to kill yourself in the kitchen, pick up her book.
November 23, 2012
Another Thanksgiving has been survived! We had BIL&SIL, Jimmy and Karen over (Karen specnt some time with her family then cam over for dessert). I started the cooking on Sunday to help reduce the stress of everything that needed to happen Thursday to create a good meal.
Sunday I made the mashed potatoes - that included pealing and boiling up 10 pounds of spuds (minus 2 potatoes). I still had to put them in the crock pot, but the crockpot was in use because I also made a double batch of Sausage Stew to take to work for the Thanksgiving pot luck (evidently that was a hit as I did't bring home any leftovers and the 6qt pot was filled to the brim with sausage stew). Then I also washed and cut up several pounds of fresh greanbeans, then blanched them, for use in the green bean casserole. After cooking all that on Sunday, I set it out in the lean-to and let mother nature take care of keeping it cold (with lows in the high teens, and highes in the 20's, that worked out well).
Thurday dawned brightly and I got to work cooking. Okay, first I decided it would be good to vacuum, brush Missy, then vacuum again to get rid of any dog hair floating around. Then I made the stuffing, so it could cool before stuffing the turkey. Now, to be clear, I have never made stuffing before. I generally don't care for it, so don't bother. However, I found a recipe in the November 2012 issue of Prevention Magazine for sausage, stuffing that sounded awesome (with a few tweaks), so decided to give it a try. I also used their recipe for turkey in the same artcle (for the most part).
The bird was seasoned and stuffed, then ovenized. The majority of the dressing went into a large casserole, was covered with foil, then placed on the deck to stay chilled. The neck and giblets were boiled and saved for the dogs' dinner. Next I took all the mashed potatoes and started cramming them in the now empty crock pot. A layer of potatoes, then a layer of shredded cheese. Anohter layer of potatoes, and shredded cheese. Topped off with potatoes - and once again the crock was filled to the brim. Set that in the back room on high for an hour, then low until we were ready to eat.
Then it was on to house preperation - cleaning the bathroom, cleaning out the wood stove, filling the wood rack, a little scented oil in the bathroom, and a candle lit in the living room. Shortly after that, Jimmy arrived and WS came in from his final leaf clean up, and we socialized over snacks (chips and dip and a bag of mixed nuts - the peanut gallery can leave the obvious comment alone :).
Shortly before the turkey was done, I put together the green bean casserole. Then it, and the rest of the stuffing went into the oven after pulling the turkey out to let it "rest". then I got the ingredients together for Clinton Kelly's Apple-Cranberry Cobbler so it would be ready to go in when the sides came out. As an aside, I added 1/8 tsp ground cloves and a bit of ground ginger to the cobbler recipe (just because it sounded good to me).
Up until this point everything was wheat-free. I used pure cornbread for the stuffing and used a Bob's Mills gluten free general baking mix for the cobbler. However, Thnksgiving just insn't Thanksgiving without crescent rolls - so it wasn't a totally wheat-free meal. And, Karen brought a fabulous apple pie to go with the cobbler, and I couldn't pass up a slice of that.
I pushed back the dinner because after much conversation with everyone (somewhere in there BIL/SIL arrived, we watched the end of the Lion's game. It was a close game at that point and everyone was busy cheering on the team they wanted to win. So, after the game, WS carved the turkey while I tried to figure out how to get all the food, plates and serving utensils on the few counters we have. I finally moved enough stuff to allow for buffet-style loading of plates, and the feast was on (Karen arrived shortly after we started dinner). Aparently everything was good as it got really quiete, until people got up for seconds.
After that, we lazed around for an hour or so before bringing out the deserts (with ice cream and whipped cream) - then everyone lazed around moaning and groaning from their full tummies.
I managed to send most of the leftovers home with everyone else (another sign that the meal was a hit - they were eager for leftovers!), so the fridge isn't stuffed to the brim! I'll share the stuffing recipe with you in a day or so - it got rave reviews, as did the turkey and cobbler. I was so happy it came out well since I was nervous I was using three recipes that I hadn't tried out previously!
Eventually everyone recuperated enough to find their way home - all thankfull for the family, friends, and the meal, and the day set aside to enjoy it!
September 22, 2012
Last Saturday morning, we left for The Cape (Cape Cod, MA - 3 hours away) to attend WS's niece's wedding. It was a beach beautiful setting for the wedding.
We also had a slow dance where all couples danced and the DJ would call out years together; 5, 10, 15, 20 etc. At 25 years, WS and I, and the brides mom and dad (BIL&SIL) were the only ones left. BIL and SIL have actually been married over 30 years.
We spent the night and headed back shortly after noon (we toured a few other beaches before heading back. So, the wedding took up most of our weekend - nice and relaxing and kept WS from going to work!
June 17, 2012
Father's Day Wishes
Happy Father's Day to Cop Car's HH. Hopefully he can get some golf or other relaxing activity in!
December 10, 2011
Time Spent with WS's Family
Thanksgiving day WS and his brother set up a target so his brother D could use his Glock 17 for the first time (he’s had it several years). After we loaded the magazines, D offered the handgun to WS, who declined. D didn’t want to shoot first, so I was happy to do so. I shot a good grouping with the first 8 shots, then I offered it to D. H immediately got slide bit. I apologized to him as I has assumed that he had at least shot a handgun before and knew how to hold it so as not to get hit by the slide. I then showed him the technique that I use and he had a much better time.
* * * * * * * *
Friday we went for a drive and visited some people that wouldn’t be at the family event on Saturday. We were taken on the “scenic” route – in this case the scenery was of the windmill farms. Was told that there are somewhere around 500 windmills along the corridor that we visited. It was kind of cool to see. The pictures will give lie to the fact that everyone thinks that Kansas is totally flat. It was so un-flat that I could rarely get more than 3 or 4 windmills in a picture. We did top a bluff and I was able to get a good shot of dozens of the machines though.
Saturday: A family get together (WS’s family) was held at a church function room. It was a pot luck lunch and there was lots of good food present (the Santa Fe Soup was one of the offerings). We also did family pictures, using personal digital cameras. A lot of the family that I have only met once (or never) was present as well as the immediate family that we always visit with.
* * * * * * * *
Sunday, WS’s sister and her boyfriend came over for more shooting fun. They brought with them a Hi-Point 995 rifle (an older model – not the newer type that has rails and all kinds of crap on it), a Ruger .22 and a BB. They were supposed to bring an LCP also (which we had gotten ammo for), but they somehow forgot it. Oh well, we all had fun with what was brought along with D’s Glock 17. We also had a new shooter, WD’s grandnephew, who is about 8 years old. He shot well, but needed reminding about safety rules a couple of times. He couldn’t handle the long stock of the Hi-Point (although as you can see by the picture, he tried), but there were enough other firearms there to keep him busy. It was a cold afternoon (lower 40’s, cloudy and windy), so after 90 minutes or so, everyone was ready to come in and get warm.