Dispensing Happiness

A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.-Elsa Schiapirelli

That's me, the magical good cook.

Borrowing from my friend Dexygus, I've created my own food blog.

Read of my exploits in the kitchen! Salivate over the descriptions of fabulous desserts and savory meals I've concocted!

No, seriously...go ahead. It'll make my day.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Don't Feed the Animals

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But feeding animal cookies to kids is just fine!


Early this summer, we spent a day at the zoo with my mom, step-dad, youngest sister and her boyfriend. We came back to our house for a cook-out, and at some point, mom handed Alex a bag filled with these adorable cookies she'd made for him. There were owls and penguins, seals, walruses...and possibly one or two more.

My mom's fantastic sugar cookies, made to look like animal faces.

How cute is that?


We put the majority of the cookies in the freezer, and this is the last one...Mom? Care to re-stock?








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Friday, August 29, 2008

Triumph

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I don't know what, exactly, has gotten into Alex. I'm not sure I care, either...he's been on a 'taste-new-foods' jag the past couple of weeks. It's, well, it's wonderful.

That day when you sit down at the dining table, and all three plates hold the same foods? Priceless.

He breezed through Italian, expressed delight with his foray into Chinese, and really dug into the Swiss wonder of fondue.

So imagine our glee, absolute glee, when Alex decided he loved the Mediterranean offerings we gave him the other night.

He saw the falafel, asked what it was, and declared "I want to try that, I hope I like it'.

He did, too. He loved everything. I think he consumed half a 'brick' of feta.

I have no idea why he's been so keen to eat new foods, but so long as he is we're going to keep trotting out our favorites.

Wonder what spot on the globe we'll visit next...








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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wartime Wednesdays: Griddlecakes

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Useful Facts About Food

Use of Recipes---To become a good cook requires more than a blind following of a recipe. This is frequently illustrated when several women living in the same community, all using the same recipe, obtain widely differing results. It is the reason so many cooks say, "I had good luck with my cake to-day," or "I had bad luck with my bread yesterday." Happily, luck causes neither the success nor the failure of a product. to become a good cook means to gain a knowledge of foods and how they behave, and skill in manipulating. The recipe itself, helpful as it is, will not produce a good product; the human being using the recipe must interpret it and must have skill in handling the materials it prescribes.
Some of the lessons which the person desiring to become a good should learn are given in the following pages. They will not be learned all at once; but if they are gradually mastered, luck will play a less important par in culinary conversation.
---The Victory Binding of the American Woman's Cook Book, Wartime Edition, 1943



Sifted flour, salt, baking powder and corn meal are added to a mixture of beaten eggs, milk, and melted vegetable fat. Beaten till smooth, cooked by spoonfuls (um...yeah) on a hot griddle.

Slightly heavier, most substantial. Excellent with syrup.






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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

BBM: 10 Items or Less---Who's Signed Up

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SIGN-UPS ARE NOW CLOSED. We have a total of 116 participants this time!

113 boxes have shipped! 3 to go!

91 boxes have arrived!!!!



Abnormality Frugality Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

A cat in the kitchen Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Adirondack Vegan Package has arrived!!!!

All Momas Quilt Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Always Order Dessert Package has shipped!!

Ambrosia Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Anne's Food Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Ann's Food Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

apples peaches pumpkin pie Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

as we know it (and I feel fine) Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Belgian Adventures Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

books: just for fun! Package has shipped!!

Boston Food & Whine Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Boybeater Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

bucaio Package has shipped!!

Buffyfest Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Butter & Beans Package has shipped!!

Cakes by Rosa Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Calling Dr. Bombay Package has arrived!!!!

Cave Cibum Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

C'est La Vie Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Chef Barbie Cooks Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Clivia's Cuisine Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Clumbsy Cookie Package has shipped!!

Coffee Time at Home
Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Cooking Confections Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Cooking up a Family Package has arrived!!!!

Crafty Kim Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

CupcakeRN Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Delicious Delights Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Design Gal & Her Handyman Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Detective Typewriter Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Diary of a Fanatic Foodie Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Dianne's Dishes Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Dispensing Happiness Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Dozen Flours Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Dragon Musings Package has shipped! Package has arrived!!!!

emzeegee & the hungry three Package has shipped!!

erin-go-blog! Package has arrived!!!! Package has shipped!!

Flavor Junkie Package has shipped!!

Food Art and Random Thoughts Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Food for Five Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Food, Glorious Food! Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

foodierachel Package has shipped!!

food + photograpphy Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Gastronomic Diary Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Hamblin Recipes Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

happygrub Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Have Fork will Travel
Package has arrived!!!! Package has shipped!!

Heaven on Earth Package has arrived!!!! Package has shipped!!!!

I'll Eat You Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

It's the Little Things Package has shipped!!

I Wear Many Hats Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Judy's Gross Eats Package has arrived!!!! Package has shipped!!

July Bug Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Jumbo Empanadas Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Just Got Floury Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Kahakai Kitchen Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Kenzie's Kitchen Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Kitchen Wench Package has shipped!!

Kumquat Connection---Bonnie Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

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Life at 123 House Package has shipped!!

Life Imitating Art Package has shipped!!

Life in the Slow Lane Package has shipped!!

Lindsey's Kitchen Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Living in the Kitchen with Puppies Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Lulu the Baker Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Media Lounge Package has shipped!!

Megan's Cookin Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!

miss.cupcake.face Package has arrived!!!! Package has shipped!!

Miwa in Aus Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Monkee-in-the-Middle Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Mrs. Ehorn Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

ms. fifikins Package has shipped!!

Munch & Nibble Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Munchkin Mail Package has shipped!! Package has arrived

My Food Blog Package has shipped!!

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My Plate, My World Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

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Nummy Kitchen Package has shipped!!

Oatmeal CookieBlog Package has shipped!!

Off the mark and Roaming Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Our Full House Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Pages, Pucks and Pantry
Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Pam's Pantry Package has shipped!! Package has arrived

Paprika meets Kardamom Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

PheMOMenon Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

pieces Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

quilts, flowers, purple...
Package has shipped!!

Ramblings of a Food Addict Package has arrived!!!! Package has shipped!!!!

Sew Much Fabric, Sew Little Time Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Shortcut to Mushrooms Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

SLO Cooking Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Stranger in Sweden Package has Shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Strawberry/Maasikas Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Sushi Day Package has arrived!!! Package has shipped!!

Sweets by Sarah Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

Sweet Indulgences Package has shipped!!

Tempered Woman

The Accidental Scientist Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

The Adventures of a Little Red Rucksack Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

The Samantha Files Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

The Sour Dough Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

the thoughts of somewhere smiling Package has shipped!!

Tokidoki Package has shipped!! Package has arrived!!!!

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Two Fat Als Package has shipped!!

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Monday, August 25, 2008

Blogging By Mail: 10 Items or Less

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Blogging by Mail, that fantastic global care package swap for bloggers, returns!

BBM is the brainchild of Nic of Baking Bites, who has rather graciously allowed me to run this event, and I'm happy to announce a new round and a new theme.

You may have noticed that the price of everything is going up, right? Yeah, me too. But I still love sending off packages, and getting one in return? Just as exciting. So my solution to the impending recession is this: 10 Items or Less. Ten (or fewer) of your favorite things, ten must-haves, ten items that interest or excite you at the moment....food, stationary, books, whatever.

And by 'items', I mean a unit. For example: one box of tea would be an item. A bag or packet of something, also counts as one.

Gather up your favorite things, but limit yourself to no more than TEN. The goal is to cut down on shipping costs, which are fairly outrageous right now.

If you'd like to sign up, here's what you need to do.

1. Be absolutely sure you can commit to this. By signing up for Blogging by Mail, you're promsing to send a package to someone out there, and they'll be waiting for it. My goal for this round is for EVERY BBM'er to receive a box.

2. Have, or contribute to, a blog. It is called Blogging by Mail, after all. I'm sorry, but if you don't have one, you can't join. It's kind of the point. On the bright side, it's pretty easy to start up a blog!

3. Agree to write a post about, including pictures of, any package you receive. Every one of us gets a kick out of seeing what's being sent, so posting is important!

4. Fill out the sign up form below, and send it to me at thehappysorceress at gmail dot com. If you want to be a part of this, add that address to your 'safe' list right away, or you could end up missing vital swap information! I will reply to your email with 48 hours, letting you know you're officially part of BBM.

Our last round had 85 participants, with almost 100% success. Let's work to make this one even better!

Match-ups will be made during the days after the sign-ups close; for the record, I do not do an A-to-B, B-to-A swap. You could be sending a box to England and getting one from Singapore!

In the days after sign-ups close, I will begin sending out your 'to send' information. If you haven't heard from me by the end of September, check your Spam/Junk mail folders. If you still don't see anything, send off an email to me immediately!

Packages MUST be shipped out no later than Saturday, 18 October.


Sign-ups will be open until Sunday, 21 September.


***Double, and even triple, check your information before sending it to me. A missed number in a postal code, a typo in your street address, could be the reason you're left package-less!***


Official Blogging by Mail Form



Your Full Name (first and last)


Your Blog's Name

Your Blog's URL


Your Email Address

Your 'Real' Address (be sure to include postal/country codes)

Are You Willing to Ship Internationally?

Any Strong Dislikes, Likes, Allergies, Etc


If You've Participated in Past Rounds, if Possible Please Remind Me Who You've Been Paired With (to & from), So I Can Do My Best Not to Repeat!

Add any other information you deem pertinent, of course.



For inspiration, check out the last Blogging by Mail for ideas.

If you have any other questions, let me know. Now go on, start packing that box!






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Saturday, August 23, 2008

Blog Party#37: Retro Party Redux---the Round-Up

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Hello ladies! And welcome to Blog Party.

I see everyone is dressed in their party finest, and may I say you look positively lovely? And thank goodness I didn't wear the same dress !

I see a wonderful range here tonight, with a definite slant towards the War years and the late Sixties. I've selected music that's firmly in the middle of those periods, starting with Cocktail Hour: Swing Time.



There the wonderful box set-y goodness of Cocktail Hour with Dean Martin (not real creative about naming these things, are they?).




Despite the lack of um, gentlemen here tonight, I could not pass up the wonderfulness of Bachelor in Paradise: Cocktail Classics from MGM Films.




And finally, and one of the reasons I started Blog Party, from the fabulous Ultra-Lounge collection, Bossa Novaville!





Drinks are ready, set up on the bar...help yourself!




Speaking of, no cocktail party would be complete without a good shaker!



And with all those drinks, and so many wonderful bites to eat, we need lots of napkins. Well, I just had to get these!



Be careful of the woodwork, ladies...this grande dame of a house is covered in it, but refuses to show her age. So be sure to grab one of these very cute coasters.


Now, I know we're all on our best, lady-like, behavior, but let's be honest...it's really about the food! So let's get to it.




Natshaya's the first one in *kiss kiss*, welcome dah-ling!
And, oh! Did she ever bring the retro with her Egg Salad Accordions! It's...perfection!
And her very classic Bellinis are a fantastic way to start the evening.
It's so very good to see you, Natashya!





Silvermoon Dragon's the next one to arrive, although she's left the children behind for a night out with the grown-ups, she's not about to pass up a little child-labor help getting ready!
So she's brought along these palm-sized Mini Quiches...yum!
And while she doesn't think she's serving up anything spectacular, after all the alcohol that's likely to be consumed tonight, her endless Pot of Coffee will be a welcome sight.
Wonderful to have you back!



Deb's here, and she's kicking off a bit of a Sixties trend for the party.
I was positively floored when she shared her inspiration for tonight's goodies; a Campbell's soup recipe book! Love it.
There's the Pizza-Flavored Hot Cheese Dunk, the Chicken Cheese Teasers, a (questionable?) Beef Fizz, and the soon-to-be appreciated Frozen Daiquiris. Bravo, Deb! And I'll absolutely get those tunes on tonight, promise. Good to see you!





Lysy's back! And she's taking us back a couple of decades, with a return to the War years. Rations-savy, she's serving up a few treats for the young-at-heart. Her Open-Faced Grated Cheese & Carrot, and Mock Banana Sandwiches are intriguing!
Her cute little Jam-filled Tarts are sure to please, and I personally can't wait to taste the not-in-the US Lemon & Orange Squash.
Thanks for the history lesson, Lysy!





Judith is back!
Her take on retro food went the way of comfort and nostaliga; my favorites. So, she's brought us the always popular Grilled Cheese Sandwich, Mom's way! And excuse me if I utter a 'yippee' as she serves up the very old-fashioned Egg Creams; I've been wanting to try one for ages.
Thanks so much for coming, Judith!





breadchick's the next to come, and she's here in absolute groovin' style.
I remember just about every family gathering, during my childhood, serving up at least one of the dishes she's given us tonight. I love how food can stir up memories...
So, we have your choice of Four-Bean Salad, Macaroni Salad, and Cucumber Dill Salad. Mmm.
Ooh! Ooh! I don't mean to be rude, but I'm shoving to the front of the line for a can of Tab!
Far out, breadchick...





In comes Melody!And she knows exactly what I love in a retro cocktail party: glamour, glitz, old Hollywood...and canapes!
There's the truly classic Endive Spoons with Lemon Herbed Goat Cheese, Canteloupe Balsamic Basil Bites, and Cheese Puffs; divine!
And as we're all girls here tonight, Melody's Pink Champagne Cocktail ought to be a big hit.
Wonderful to see you!





Gabi's next, and did she ever go for the old-school style tonight!
Evoking classic movies and elegant stars, and even going so far as to consult with me about dresses (heaven forbid we wear the same frock!), she's brought a tray of Hot Cheese Puffs, to be served with The Stork Club Cocktail. Beautiful, truly.
So happy you could come, Gabi!





And my darling J, rushing breathlessly through the front door, is our final guest. But she knows how to make an entrance, laden with possibly more food than we can consume!
Ok, not really. We aren't that dainty.
She starts us off with Mini Cheese Fondue, followed by Chicken Kiev Bites, moves on to Cheese & Pineapple Cubes, then makes us hope we saved room for dessert with her Neapolitan Ice Cream Spoons & bites of Mandarin-Topped Cheesecake. Whew!
Some Sparkling White to help you work your way down the line, then pick up a bit of chocolate, to top it off.
Oh, J...marvelous, as always!

You know me. This is what I live for. So, looking back in time, enjoy!



Pigs In Blankets




Lil' smokeys, topped with a drop of steak sauce (Country Bob's), wrapped in puffed pastry and baked till golden. Serve with ketchup and mustard.




Shrimp (almost) Cocktail

Growing up, it was a true & rare treat when my grandparents would share a shrimp cocktail with me. My Grammy still has the little glasses used for the cocktail sauce (now serving as juice glasses). I no longer eat fish (or anything else that once had a pulse), but now and again we can find an amazing soy-based line of 'faux' seafood. They taste like the real thing, have the same texture, and will stand up to any cooking method. So, I guess it's really a Shrimp Mocktail...





Deviled Eggs




What's more classic than this? And it really doesn't need an explanation, does it?




No party, no family gathering, could get rolling without a cheese ball!



And so I give you the Lil Smoky Cheese Ball; shredded smoked Gouda, cream cheese, milk, lemon juice & steak sauce (again, Country Bob's), mixed, chilled, rolled into something resembling a sphere, then rolled in toasted & chopped pecans. Serve with Ritz, of course!




Of course, everyone was infatuated with all things Hawaii, post-war. And this delightful drink, called a Waimea Grass Skirt Cooler, is practically Hawaii in a glass (Deb, what do you think?). Pineapple, orange, lime and lemon juices, sugar all blended, then vanilla ice cream is mixed in. Oh...lightly citrus, and creamy.





And because it's me, and it's a favorite, the ultimate classic non-alcoholic beverage, the Shirley Temple, done the old way, with ginger ale, orange juice, and grenadine. And of course, a maraschino cherry!

Ladies, I think this was an absolute success, if only for getting through the night without seeing a single dish in aspic (shudders at the thought).

As always, you amaze and impress me. Thank you all for coming!


And as the party winds down, anyone up for a game of cards? Penny a point...house rules!





I hope to see you all next month, for what I hope will be an extra-special party...more details coming soon!



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Friday, August 22, 2008

Retro Preview: Fondue

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Blog Party Retro Party is tomorrow, so we decided to go a bit 'retro' in preparation.




What's more retro than fondue? Yummy melty cheese, Tuscan bread, new potatoes, cauliflower, and baby carrots.




When Matt & I realized we were the proud owners of three fondue pots (two of them gifts), we asked a friend if we looked like people who fondue. His honest answer: "yes, you do".



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Thursday, August 21, 2008

Cookbook Review: California Pizza Kitchen

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Avocado Club Egg Roll


Despite living in California for a few years, I never ate at a California Pizza Kitchen. But I found I couldn't resist their new cookbook, California Pizza Kitchen Family Cookbook. It's a little dynamo: small, jam-packed, and happy yellow!



A tiny book, with almost sixty recipes, including basics. Ironically, I never did get around to trying a pizza recipe! Although I have the White Pizza with Bacon and the Chipotle Chicken Pizza marked for future use.

The recipes are all pretty easy, although many have that oh-so-fun recipe within a recipe. There's definitely a family vibe running through it.

Heavy on the chicken, and using lots of cheese, this isn't a low-fat book, nor is it a truly 'gourmet' tome, either. There's some store-bought help, and some recipes are a little too hotel buffet artery-clogging! But in general, it's a neat little book with some funky dishes.

And best of all...the entire proceeds from the sales of the book go to children's charities!

The first recipe, the Avocado Club Egg Roll, was pretty fantastic. Embarrassingly addictive, those things. Grilled & diced chicken (or Veat), crumbled bacon (or veggie bacon), diced Roma tomatoes, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, and sliced avocado are layered on an egg roll wrapper. With an egg wash to moisten, roll up and seal, then fry about 1 1/2 minutes per side, till golden.
Serve with a dip of Ranch dressing, mayo and hot sauce.

Oh, it's good. I mean, the filling is just a club sandwich, right? Add avocado, almost...not quite but almost...over-kill. Then FRY it? Have mercy.


Curly Mac & Cheese

I made this primarily for Alex's benefit. It uses, and please don't take away my food blogging credentials for admitting this, Velveeta. (looks properly shamed)
Not exactly curly, eh? Couldn't find that new box of fusilli we'd just bought. So, used up the odds ands ends of pasta lying around.

It's just cream and processed cheese food spread (hee), melted, and pasta. It started out pretty good, actually. The cream really tempered the Velveeta (I can't believe I've typed the word 'Velveeta' this many times!), and it was a creamy sauce.
Of course, as it cooled down, it got...um, thick. My lips were sticking together, they were so coated with sauce. Best eaten HOT.



Honey-Dijon Chicken & Bacon Panini

Any excuse to use the sandwich press!

Italian bread, a mixture of mayo, Dijon, and honey spread on one side. Then, sliced garlic chicken (made ahead of time), bacon, and slices of Monterey Jack; grill.

Simply? Good stuff.







We're kicking off our fourth year of Blog Party by taking a look back at some of our favorite first-year themes. This month, we're revisiting a BP favorite, Retro Party!

We're doing a bit of time-travel, and bringing back some of the weird and wonderful dishes & drinks from the 20's through the late sixties. You won't want to miss it! R.S.V.P. no later than TONIGHT. Hope to see you there!





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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wartime Wednesdays: Burgundian Beef

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WINE IN COOKERY
---Wine is friendly to many foods but is equally antagonistic to other favorites. Egg is the outstanding example of the latter and cheese of the former. White and shell fish, poultry, game and meat, except pork, take on added luster by the addition of a small quantity of wine. Mushrooms, truffles and sweet potatoes complement wine flavors. Beware, beware, the combining of wine with acids in the form of gherkins, vinegar and similar condiments.
For fish or meat sauces, dry wines are the dicta of most experts. Riesling and Chablis are typical dry white wines, and claret is a typical dry red one. In the case of fish, the wine must be white, always, for red wine and fish do not mix. Meats may be cooked with either red or white wine. Occasionally a dash of a sweet cordial added at the last moment improves a meat. For instance, a tablespoon of Benedictine works magic in a pot roast
.---The Victory Binding of the American Woman's Cook Book, published 1943


The recipe called for salt pork, diced and sauted in butter. We couldn't find salt pork, so I used bacon. A large chunk of beef is seared, all over, then removed. Add in minced onions, shallots, garlic and carrots. Simmer, add in peppercorns, bay leaves, tarragon vinegar, thyme, parsley, chervil, wine and the beef. Cook three hours on a slow heat. Skim fat, and serve.





We're kicking off our fourth year of Blog Party by taking a look back at some of our favorite first-year themes. This month, we're revisiting a BP favorite, Retro Party!

We're doing a bit of time-travel, and bringing back some of the weird and wonderful dishes & drinks from the 20's through the late sixties. You won't want to miss it! R.S.V.P. no later than TOMORROW, Thursday, 21 August. Hope to see you there!





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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Someone's in the Kitchen with Alex: Tortellini with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

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I found this one hiding in the cute little recipe box I'd picked up at Sur La Table many years ago. Something I'd written down at least seven years ago, but never made.

A pasta salad, using cheese tortellini, basil, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, mayonnaise and topped with grated Parmesan.

We made it a few weeks ago, but decided the mayo made it too gloppy. Alex had helped us with the prep, though; he's a whiz on the food processor. And in a beautiful moment of culinary courage, he decided he'd take a taste of the tomato mixture. He decided he liked it. A lot. As in, he kept wiping his finger across the inside of the lid of the processor bowl. We thought we'd push it another step. Asked if he'd like to try the tortellini, telling him it was like cheesy pasta, only the cheese was on the inside.
Brave boy once again, he tested one. Liked it. Had a few more.

Thinking we had nothing to lose, we offered him a bowl of tortellini that had been tossed with the tomato/basil/garlic 'sauce' left in the processor. He downed it. Happily.

We basked in this small accomplishment. Our five year old had tried not one, but two new foods, and liked them.


To our immense surprise, over the weekend Alex asked if we could make that tomato tortellini dish again. He helped, adding ingredients and pushing buttons. We completely skipped the mayonnaise, instead adding a bit more cooking water and the oil from the bottom of the sun-dried tomato jar.

Alex had a rather large bowl of pasta that night. There was some left over, and I suggested he take it to school for lunch this week.

He thought that a most excellent idea.






We're kicking off our fourth year of Blog Party by taking a look back at some of our favorite first-year themes. This month, we're revisiting a BP favorite, Retro Party!

We're doing a bit of time-travel, and bringing back some of the weird and wonderful dishes & drinks from the 20's through the late sixties. You won't want to miss it! R.S.V.P. no later than THIS Thursday, 21 August. Hope to see you there!







Tagged with: + + + + + +

Flour Child

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This is what happens when you insist on getting up close & personal when Mommy's making cookies.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

With Some Exceptions, of Course...

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Discovered at Very Good Taste; a list of things he thinks every omnivore should eat. Of course, I'm a vegetarian, but I spent more than twenty years as a non-veg. I've consumed just over 30. Which, under the circumstances, I can live with.

What he wants you to do:


1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment at www.verygoodtaste.co.uk linking to your results.


The VGT Omnivore’s Hundred:

1. Venison
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari
12. Pho
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters
29. Baklava
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root beer float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Bellini
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

Friday, August 15, 2008

Pitter Patter

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Not here! Oh, heavens, no. It's not me.


Alex's kindergarten teacher is leaving for maternity leave after today, so I thought I'd send her off with something sweet.

An idea borrowed from my mom, little baby feet cookies! She sent out cookies like this (only better decorated; it's her cookie recipe) with my baby shower invitation. How cute is that?

And yes, she's having a girl.

I would/should have frosted the whole cookie, but didn't. My original idea was to frost them in a 'flesh' colored glaze, then pipe in tiny toenails. But Matt was seriously creeped out at the idea of a pregnant woman eating little baby foot-shaped cookies...





We're kicking off our fourth year of Blog Party by taking a look back at some of our favorite first-year themes. This month, we're revisiting a BP favorite, Retro Party!

We're doing a bit of time-travel, and bringing back some of the weird and wonderful dishes & drinks from the 20's through the late sixties. You won't want to miss it! R.S.V.P. no later than Thursday, 21 August. Hope to see you there!







Tagged with: + + + + + +

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Breakfast...or Dessert?

.



When I got my first look at King Arthur Flour's new recipe site, I found I'd lost at least an hour. I mean, there I was, at one time, and suddenly, it's an hour later and I was extremely hungry.

Too many recipes bookmarked, and a realization not only will I not live long enough to run through them, but my great grandchildren will still be working their way through my lists of 'to try' recipes.

But then one that really grabbed me, the one I had to make, was the Caramel-Cinnamon Meltdowns.

A cinnamon-battered muffin, with both a sweet cinnamon & a caramel filling, topped with cinnamon sugar.

Reviews ranged from "really yummy" to "tender, cinnamon-y, really sweet". All said with happy smiles.






We're kicking off our fourth year of Blog Party by taking a look back at some of our favorite first-year themes. This month, we're revisiting a BP favorite, Retro Party!

We're doing a bit of time-travel, and bringing back some of the weird and wonderful dishes & drinks from the 20's through the late sixties. You won't want to miss it! R.S.V.P. no later than Thursday, 21 August. Hope to see you there!







Tagged with: + + + + + +



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