Posted in Cooking, Life

Part Time Foodie

For the past week I’ve been doing pretty good in the eating department.  Look, I love food. I love to cook new ingredients, buy strange things at the market (shark, octopus, goat liver, whatever). I also love sweets.  And by love, I mean a deep, passionate desire type love. WHen I cut sweets and gluten (and shitty types of carbs) from my diet, I crave it so intensely, I could cry.  Some days I give in and some days I don’t.  On the days I give in, you’ll be able to find me in a Walgreen’s parking lot with a bag of M&M’s eating them in secret shame.

Okay, there’s no shame. I feel no guilt.  I LOVE SWEETS.

So-

For the past two weeks, I’ve been eating better and going to the gym at night.  I have yet to wake up to my 4:30 AM alarm to hit the gym before work. Baby steps people, baby steps! I like the gym. It’s fun. However, I hate running. This isn’t something I decided at twenty either. I knew it the second I stepped foot on the playground in kindergarten to play dodgeball.  It didn’t get any better the older I got. In high school, I straight up fake barfed to get a pass on the one mile run.  Ugh. Not only am I not good at it (I do try, promise), but it hurts my ankles, my shins, the left side of my foot.

I know… “excuses.”

That’s not to say I don’t give it a go though.  I’ll run for a minute, walk for a minute. Run for two, walk for two. Shit like that.  That gives me something to look forward to, yknow, the walking part.

So let’s quit talking about running and move on to FOOD.  Mmmmmm glorious foods.

There are two really great websites I go to for low carb/gluten free/paleo goodness:

1. Low Carb Luxury

and

2. I Breathe, I’m Hungry

Currently I Breathe, I’m Hungry has some great sample menus up to get you in ketosis.  I’ll be planning out my menu this week.  Oh and FYI- those cream cheese pancakes she mentions are THE JAM. I’ve made them several times and they are straight up delicious. So I’m stoked about that.

The Low Carb Luxury site has some great stuff too- especially the deep dish quiche pizza.  SO TASTY. It’s my fave to make, even if it is a little time consuming.

The point of this whole damn post was to share a recipe I found online!  There’s a great website called Food 52. Which is where I found Trent Pierce’s Miso Creamed Kale recipe! I made this the other night with some roasted beef and it was phenomenal. How phenomenal? Well, my son ate the rest of it after we each had a portion. A WHOLE skillet. Yes, my teenage son ate that much kale. Here’s the photo off their site:

Trent Pierce's Miso-Creamed KaleAmazing, right? I know, I hate when people use the word amazing for everything, but it really was and quite possibly will become my go to dish of the year.  I didn’t use shimeji or shiitake mushrooms (I’m the only fan in the household), so I swapped those out for portabellas. I also was out of vermouth, so I subbed dry Sherry.  Not sure if that was the legit thing to do, but for the most part the 1/4 c cooked off and didn’t taste weird or anything.

So for all my foodie friends out there, I hope you give this recipe a shot.  And if you have a favorite recipe, hook me up!

Happy cooking my loves!

Day 6: Your Day

Quarter to nine in the evening.

I’m listening to N.W.O.  by Ministry

My day? Hella busy.

Last night, somewhere between cooking supper and math homework, MD looks at me and says, “Oh yeah! Don’t forget I have to bring doughnuts to school this morning.”  I stopped stirring the quiche mix and said, “The whole seventh grade or just your class?”

Blank stare.

Once a month students are assigned a specific day to bring in breakfast to enjoy after mass.  It was eight p.m. when my son realized it was his turn.  When Bill headed in the kitchen, I mentioned it- as we were already heading to the grocery.  You know that’s some serious love when you plan a date night to the grocery store.  The only downside to that, is no one gives free samples at quarter to ten on a Tuesday night.  Get your shit together grocery stores!

We decided that we’d pick up a couple dozen doughnuts from the bakery up the street from us.  Hands down, best doughnuts I’ve ever eaten.  At five this morning, Bill was placing the order, by five thirty he was out the door to pick them up.  In the meantime, I was scrambling to dry my hair while also screaming down the hall for MD to get up.

Every Wednesday without fail, we can’t locate his tie for his mass uniform.  Today however, MD knew it was on the hall floor under the new pack of toilet paper I bought.  It’s the little things people.  Little things.  The two of us were dressed and coming down the stairs, clock running.  I am a stickler for the schedule in the morning.  I never leave the house after 6:30 a.m.

Ever.

Today we were out the door, lunches in hand (thanks to my awesome husband) and in the car by 6:24.  We pulled into the school parking lot at 6:52. I helped MD carry his gear in, as he had another ingrown toe removed earlier in the week.  One giant back pack, one small duffel bag for Drama clothes, his lunch and 4 dozen doughnuts.

And I’m in heels.

After I drop MD off, I sit in traffic for an hour.

I work.

I go to lunch.  Sometimes I eat food.  Sometimes I sleep in my car.  Sometimes I write (like today).

I come back and work some more.

I go home.

I sit in traffic for close to two hours.  Unless of course, MD has tutor.  Some days I pick him up and take him. Or Bill. Or my brother in law. Everyone coordinates their arrivals and departures. We even discuss the ebb and flow of traffic.  Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays are the long days- as we won’t get home till 7:30 p.m.

Then it’s homework till nine or so.

Then we watch a movie or cut up.  However, because MD is in drama, he’ll have practice till six. Then tutor. Then home.  Or if there’s a band concert, we scramble to beat traffic, eat food and then watch him kick ass in a concert. That lasts till 8:30. Then we go home. Then there’s homework. Then we all collapse. Most days I think about doing the laundry- but to be honest, I am so wiped out, I just go to bed and snuggle with my husband.

As I was writing this, I actually started to get a little stressed out.  When you are in constant go mode, you don’t realize how much you’re doing until you write it all down.  Hell, half the time I feel like this:

That’s probably where the heart palpitations started.  Thinking about all the driving to and fro I’d be doing. So I did what I thought was best:

I closed WordPress and left this post alone.  Until now.

Do you know what was awesome today? Not the fact that traffic was moving at a decent clip or even that the sun wasn’t in my eyes the entire time.  The nicest part of my evening was sitting outside on the patio of a coffee shop, sipping Chai tea with my husband while the sun set.  We chit chatted about our work days, the game plan for the weekend and just general stuff.

It was relaxing.

Refreshing even.

Then I realized that it was quarter till seven.  One of us had to get home, let the dog out and start supper.  The other would stay and wait for MD to get out of tutor.

Rock. Paper. Scissors.

I headed home, Bill stayed back.

While I was in the kitchen, I felt the wave of Mom guilt wash over me.  Should I work? Should I stay home? Am I involved enough at school? Does everyone have clean underwear? Will they like what I’m making for supper? I took a deep breath and kept chopping veggies while the garlic sauteed in sesame oil.

Once supper (mushroom and chickpea stew) was simmering and the house was smelling delicious, the crew started stumbling in.  Everyone carries a back pack, a lunch bag, a laptop. We all kick our shoes off by the back door, even though we come up from the garage.  We all hug and kiss each other hello because quite frankly, we’ve missed each other.

Then, the evening begins and unwinds.  Eventually I’ll go to bed.  Maybe it’ll be before one a.m., although lately I’ve been waking up around 2:30 in the morning to jot down poems.  Then I go back to sleep for another two hours.

Rinse. Repeat.

Life.

There is still laundry to be folded, but right now, I’d rather spend time with my family than fold socks.

Posted in Cooking, NaBloPoMo, Writing

Day 4: What I Ate

I know, it’s only 10:05 a.m. and here I am, already telling you what I ate.  In my defense, it’s pretty cut and dry and I can even tell you what I’ll snack on tonight, because I’m that good. 

Morning:

1 mini Hershey’s bar

1 mini Kit-Kat

1 cup French Vanilla coffee, 2 mini creamers, 1 Splenda

2.5 stalks celery, cut

2 Tbsp peanut butter

1 tsp cream cheese

1/2 a banana

That’s what I’ve eaten so far.  I once heard on the radio that people who eat a small piece of chocolate in the morning are generally nicer and have their shit together by time they get to their desks. Any reason to eat candy sounds good to me. I am addicted to candy. ALL of it. That’s no joke either. I do not discriminate against any candy. Even rock hard Tootsie rolls that I discover in my glove box.  Yep. I eat those too.

How about lunch you say? I eat lunch at 12pm, here’s what I’ve got:

1.5 cup chicken tortilla soup

This recipe is awesome and it also calls for the use of a crock pot.  Which I never use. Well, I do, but only if it’s to fill it full of rotel dip and chips. It’s not very large and I often wonder if I should break down and buy a larger one. I mean, I am an adult now and that’s what adults do. They cook food in crock pots because they don’t get home from work at a decent hour and there’s only so many nights you can say, “We’re going to have breakfast for supper! YAY!” No. There is a problem though- I panic about leaving it on.  What if the plug shorts out and catches my house on fire? Then what? No chicken tortilla soup for you! Or clean underwear. Or a place to live.  I know this is probably an irrational fear that I should get over. I’m thirty five. Crock pots don’t start your house on fire.  Dry Christmas Trees with “vintage” lights from 1985 do.

So I made the recipe without the crock pot.  I boiled the chicken first, then chopped it up.  While the chicken was boiling, I chopped all the veggies, added extra jalapeno’s, the spices and left that to marinate.  I brought the 2qts chicken stock to a rolling boil, added chicken, added marinated veggies and cooked it all for a bit (maybe an hour on low).  Right before we sat down to eat, Bill sliced up some tortillas and dumped those in, which really soaked up the juices and made the soup a little thicker.

I didn’t have avocados because I didn’t want to pay $1.99/lb for them

I did add sour cream though.

Afternoon snack:

1 honeycrisp apple.  I am in love with these apples.  To me, they are the Glenda the Good Witch of fruit (the Wicked Witch would be Red Delicious. Blech).

1 cup plum, blueberry greek lite yogurt (low carb, low sugar)

Then I’ll probably try and score some candy from some department here in the building that has left overs.  On the ride home, I’ll eat another apple or one of those round cheese bites that comes in the red waxy coating. Which, I love to keep on the side so I can mold it into something else when I have time.  Because I’m weird. In case you were wondering, I also chewed the waxy glue that was left on my Hi-C juice pack as a kid.  Okay, I did it last week too.

Supper:

More chicken tortilla soup (I made a massive amount)

Probably split some popcorn with my husband and son while we argue about what shitty movie to watch on Netflix (I got vetoed on Valley Girl last night. SAD)!

2 fingers of bourbon, no ice. NO ICE PEOPLE.  Ugh.

I’ll also sneak another piece of candy from MD’s Halloween stash.

 

So there you have it.  What I ate and what I will be eating.  It’s not complicated. It’s just food.  Now if I could schedule some work outs as well as I schedule what I eat, I’ll be set.  Patience, patience! I’ll be hitting the gym soon, seeing that I can’t really use my stair stepper since the man cave flooded.  Disaster. A project for the dead of winter. 

I’ll probably make a hearty beef stew that day.

And tell my husband he’s so super awesome for being a brilliant handy man around the house.  Then we’ll eat stew in the ripped up man cave and laugh at the work ahead of us.  

 

Posted in Cooking, LINKS, Uncategorized

LINKS!

One of my favorite things to do, aside from reading blogs and world news online (okay, okay- playing Tetris and looking at cat pics) is to click links that others have posted.  Seriously, it’s awesome.  I’ve found so many great articles, hilarious gifs, heart pounding stories, new bloggers to connect with and general awesomeness.  For quite some time I’ve thought, “I should do a links post too!”

Only I never got around to doing it.

Today, however, I thought I’d give it a shot!  Here goes nothin…

ImageThis story here looks like something I could get into for sure. Illustrated highlights from a mock 1700’s newspaper! The project is being hosted over at Unbound!

In keeping with my love of history, I’m thinking of buying this book here. Unless of course, it’s anything like Sarum.  Then you can straight up forget it.

Need a certificate letting people know you kick ass? Gotcha covered yo.

Don’t think of a “F” as failure, think of it as a one-legged “A.” Everything’s gonna be ok man!

Also, I have quite a few friends who are living a gluten free life.  Considering my own sweet husband quit eating gluten and sugar several months ago, I often try to dig up recipes to take to dinner parties or cook at home.  Sometimes it’s tough, because there are days you just want to dry hump fresh loaves of bread.  Or not, whatever.

I have a few go to websites, one which is the now defunct Punchfork (which was bought out by fucking Pinterest).  

Here’s a few of my faves:

The Minimalist Baker

Yummly, which isn’t always gluten/vegan btw.

And if you’re looking for some inspiration with your home cooking, there’s always the lovely Mama’s Minutia. She’s the one I snagged the butternut/pesto cheesecake recipe from. DUDES. MAKE THIS.

Considering my love of books & history, I couldn’t leave out my all time favorite recipe site, Paper and Salt. Nicole, the blog author, attempts to recreate favorite recipes from iconic authors. Brilliant!

Okay, enough about food, I’m getting hungry.

Don’t y’all just love Hilda?

I’d love to own one of these, or maybe have one made of my family.  If you’re not creating in some way, you’re missing out.

I still want this painting for my living room:

ImageHowever, this one is equally as impressive:

ImageRon Mueck, creates some larger than life sculptures.  I’d like to have one of these for my front yard.  Y’know, piss off the HOA.

Ten of the strangest houses. Although I call bullshit on number seven. Really? C’mon.

Think Mike Rowe is only the host of Dirty Jobs and a former Opera singer? He’s also a big advocate for skilled trades/labor jobs. You can read about it here.

I love these 8 Life Lessons from Man’s Life Magazine.

Oh my GAH, this piggie in an argyle sweater!

ImageI’ll be upping my game in regards to building couch forts this weekend.

Also, one of my buddies is the tour manager for Leogun. Who just so happen to be opening up for Kiss and QOTSA.  Go show ’em some love.

Whew.

Alright, I think I got all of that out of my system. I’ll try to post new and exciting links every Thursday.  Which means you guys should probably call me Wednesday night and tell me not to forget.  Or we could just catch up, whichever you prefer.

Thanks to Nova and Kaelah Bee for the inspiration and images/links!

Posted in Cooking

Whippin Up Some Good Eats

As I mentioned in the post below, I would be making several mini meals this week. Which are heavy on eggs. Also, tomatoes. If you could have seen us last night piling little bags full of beefsteak tomatoes, you would have said to yourself, “Self, those people need to take vitamins. Or they just love salsa. A lot.” For the record, Mr. B and myself take our vitamins and we’re not overly obsessed with salsa.

So!

First up on the list last night was Oven Baked Eggs with Tomato Salsa.

I should mention that this:

A) could be served for breakfast or brunch

B) might could fill you up, but only if you’d eaten like three waffles prior.

Now, I’m not real big on eggs. Actually, just scrambled eggs. Gah. Just the thought of them make me feel queasy. However, if you’re cooking poached, sunnyside, hard boiled or deviled eggs, I will not leave your side and will more than likely have two servings.

For last nights snack, I had the two small ramekins and Mr. B, well, I made him a special dish with extra eggs and salsa. After all, I gotta make sure my man stays full! Heh. Actually, I did that because those ramekins looked so tiny, I heard my stomach call me an asshole.

Lets move on to the actual recipe, shall we? I’ll even put money on this that Hannah Hart from My Drunk Kitchen could make this. Well, maybe not, because there was some knives and chopping involved. Does she drunk cook with knives? I forget.

For the salsa:

2 ripe tomatoes, finely chopped (I do not know how to “finely chop” anything. So the salsa was of a chunkier variety).

3 scallions, trimmed and finely chopped. (Trimmed? Uh, sure. I’m assuming scallions are those onions with the long green stems that you can get like 5 for $1.00 or some shit. Either way, add onions).

1″ piece cucumber, finely chopped (Again with the finely-ness! I just hacked up what I thought was 1″ worth of cucumber).

Tabasco to taste (I only use sriracha because I’m a tough guy)

1 tbsp cilantro, chopped (not finely)

For the Eggs:

4 sprays olive oil (why only four?)

4 eggs

Pepper

Okay, so you preheat the oven to 350. You prep the salsa, which in rocket scientist terms means: CHOP ALL THE VEGGIES. Set it aside.

“Lightly” spray your ramekins. Or, if you’re me, you straight blast those mofo’s with all sorts of oily goodness. Take some of the salsa and put a scooch in the bottom. Then crack your egg over the salsa. Place those ramekins in a roasting pan 1/2 full with hot water, sprinkle with pepper. COOK IT for 8-12 min (depending on your egg preference) at 350 degrees.

Now, this is where I got kind of grossed out. The recipe says to warm up the remaining salsa. Ew. Actually, the EW factor came when I thought about the warm cucumbers. I tried it though and it was okay. Not mind blowing or Anthony Bourdain worthy, but decent. After your eggs are done…

Wait.

You know how I said to cook your foods 8-12 minutes? Yeah. No. The eggs never looked done after 12 min. Or 17. So I called Mr. B into the kitchen for a consultation. He suggested cranking the oven to 400. We did. For five more minutes. Which means if you’re good at math & have been paying attention, I basically created a hard boiled egg on my salsa.

It was delicious.

Especially after I topped it with some more salsa and parmesan cheese.

Want to see some before and after pics? OF COURSE YOU DO.

BEFORE!

Image

AFTER!

Image

Also- I’m adding this sub text via phone because I couldn’t figure out how to do it on my desk top. Fingers crossed?

Posted in Cooking

On The Menu:

Last night the Hubs and I spent some time cleaning out the kitchen.  Well, it didn’t really start out that way. We were downstairs first cleaning out the man cave (a basement room where MD hangs out when his friends come over), which then prompted us to start cleaning up the kitchen a bit once we dragged up eighteen pairs of tan socks.

I was standing at the counter, pondering how in the hell we wound up with three coffee pots, three food processors, two espresso machines and eight 13×9 glass casserole pans. What started out as moving some magazines, wound up being a mass exodus of appliances, cook books and pens.

In between the cleaning, I began to thumb through some cookbooks I have.  Okay, “some” is really more like a small library.  If you need to make something, anything, let me know. I bet I’ve got the recipe in a book for it.  There’s the Newlywed cookbook (it’s meh), an Indian cookbook, Ultimate Italian, chocolate lovers, appetizers, soups, mini foods, cupcakes, Polish, Amish oh and even one from Trisha Yearwood (that’s some good eats right there).

So-

I began thumbing through one of my go to’s:  The 100 Calorie Cookbook.

Maybe it was because I was starving and had eaten half of a protein bar for supper, but everything looked delicious.  Even the mushroom pate. Sort of.  I compiled a list of what I wanted to make this week for suppers and snacks.  I’m totally into getting Bento Boxes for everyone’s lunches this year, so tiny foods and foods that require no reheating are game for me.

First up:

Oven Baked Eggs with Tomato Salsa!

Basically you’re going to make a homemade salsa, place a little in a ramekin, crack an egg over the top, bake that shizz up and then top with more salsa.  WIN!

Next is the Zucchini, Carrot & Tomato Frittata.  Slice up your veggies, whip up some eggs in a pan, when slightly set, add your veggies and cheese!

Then there’s the Salmon Scramble! You’ll gut a few tomatoes, take the flesh, set aside to scramble with some eggs & salmon.  While you’re doing that, broil up those tomatoes.  Once finished, scoop your salmon scramble back into the tomato.

Do you see a theme?

After tallying my grocery list, I realized I’m going to buy 14 tomatoes.  That’s like the baker’s dozens cousin.  FOURTEEN? Yeesh.  Hey, I’m all about fresh and tasty.  I’ll probably have a mouth full of canker sores from all the acidity, but it’ll be fine.  No, really.  It will be.

Stay tuned this week for pictures, it could get crazy in my kitchen! You never know- I may just figure out how to stew tomatoes in one of my three coffee pots (weirder shit has happened).