May 5, 2013
Sometimes there’s a serendipitous weekend where things don’t go as you planned, but it was an terrific weekend anyway. I had hoped that it would be a lovely weekend outside. Alas, it was fairly cool outside. [Note to Mother Nature: it’s May. In this part of the world, most of us would like to wear shorts now!] Not a great weekend to work outdoors in the garden, nor ride bikes, or even run. Nope, this was an inside weekend.
I had been wanting to try some new recipes. Since the weather wasn’t a distraction, I decided this weekend would be a great weekend to try making either some chicken sausage or some sort of ravioli.
You know that children’s book, “If You Give A Moose A Muffin?” The one where they give a moose a muffin, and he needs jam, and a knife, and he gets all distracted and messes up the whole house before finally eating the muffin? Wait ‘til you hear how I got from chicken sausage to ravioli… read more »
October 8, 2012
Mmmm…it’s definitely fall! Well, at least many of the days recently, it’s fall here in NC. It seems to vacillate between hot and humid and cool and crisp, if it’s not cool and rainy (like today). The apple crop is at the Farmer’s Market and is in my wonderful Produce Box. I absolutely adore a crisp Gala apple! The others are nice, but I love eating a small, Gala apple for a snack (several times a day, if I can!).
In my recent Produce Box, we had some of the most gorgeous apples. But their flesh is softer than I care to eat for a snack, and these things were monsterously large! The Produce Box newsletter had a number of recipes and suggestions to cook apples. Poking around the Internet, I ran across applesauce. Applesauce! Perfect! But, isn’t that an all day ordeal that takes all day, bushels of apples, and makes 632 quarts? Nope. It’s sooooo easy. And to make a delicious dessert for 2-3, it couldn’t be easier!
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July 18, 2012
I dislike paying full price for an item. I love getting a bargain. I love using my (expensive) little smart phone (and its accompanying expensive little service plan) to help me get an even bigger bargain.
Amazon has two apps that help save a lot of money. The first is Amazon Mobile (the icon on the left) and the other is Amazon Price Check (the icon on the right). The Amazon Mobile app lets shop, check prices, check out, and more, where the Price Check app simply checks prices and shows the product details (including reviews). read more »
July 8, 2012
It’s all over Pinterest…that you can draw on ceramics with a Sharpie and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes and it’s permanent. I’ve used a number of special glass paints available at the local craft store, but wouldn’t it be awesome if Sharpies work? Somehow, I really doubted that it would be that easy, otherwise, why would those specialized products like Pebeo Vitrea and Porcelaine exist? But I just had to try this. And I’ve tried it twice now, mostly because my first pass had a spelling error (never start these projects late at night!).
I had a leftover tile from a previous ceramic painting experiment. It’s a cheap tile (around $1) from the local home improvement store. I rounded up a number of brands and colors of permanent markers. It’s actually embarrassing how many different kinds and colors I have, but I kept it to the ones that were in my kitchen.
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July 8, 2012
Spices are expensive! But so yummy and quite imperative if one likes different cuisines and/or if one is trying to cut fat and calories from one’s diet. Not only are they expensive, they also never come in quite the right size container. During the winter, I go through chili powder by the half cup or more several times a month, but a tablespoon of marjoram lasts me for several years.
My first foray into saving on spices came several years ago when I saw that warehouse clubs sell them in the 16 ounce size, usually for about double what you’d pay for the 1-2 ounce container in the grocery. Hello, you perfect size container of chili powder! And why, cayenne, you’ll do wonderfully for sprinkling in the garden to keep the squirrels away (much cheaper than the cayenne mixed with filler at the garden center — and it works!). However, the bay leaves and peppercorns was not a good deal for me as I just can’t use them before they lose their potency.
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June 7, 2012
I love my CSA/produce delivery. Once a week I get to look at a box full of incredible goodies, and it’s like an episode of Chopped: here’s a box with lots of items, now plan a week’s worth of meals around it. Go!
Some weeks are easy: strawberries, blueberries, green beans, sweet potatoes, tomatoes. No problems there. Now, about that cabbage that’s the size of a baby…what do I do with that much cabbage? Even the small, pointy cabbage presents a challenge. It’s just not a veggie I cook with often.
So, after the corned beef and cabbage, now what? read more »
June 6, 2012
My snapshot of the meager leftovers the next day. It makes good leftovers, too!
I love chicken salad. Well, specifically, chicken salad that anyone else makes. I can’t seem to get it right! Until now. In my quest for finding new recipes for bok choy, I found this recipe for Chicken Salad Sandwich with Bok Choy. I had to improvise a bit because one of the four of us is not a fan of walnuts (the rest of us are!), as well as having a lot of leftover roasted chicken instead of a set number of chicken breasts. So here’s what I came up with as the proportions:
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May 26, 2012
We’re doing lots of home improvement projects in anticipation of our daughter’s wedding. Mostly it’s a lot of refinishing walls that sometimes includes either stripping poorly hung wallpaper or painting over oil-based paint. The home was built in 1989 — who uses oil-based paint INSIDE in the modern era?! Having finished most of the walls that we want to change, we’re now fixing the floors.
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New carpet on the porch. Finally!
May 24, 2012
My family has subscribed to a CSA/produce delivery service for a little over a year now. If you’re in the Triangle, Triad, or Wilmington NC (and a few other areas), please check out The Produce Box. We’ve had the best and freshest produce imaginable!
We love stir-fries, too. It’s our go-to meal for the summer. Chop up the veggies in the box, add some meat, add a low-fat sauce, and dinner’s ready in a jiffy. But by the end of the summer, it’s kinda routine. So when we had a bounty of bok choy, I went looking for a recipe that was something other than a stir-fry. The result was this High Fiber Pear-Glazed Ginger Chicken Recipe from Shape Magazine. I’m sure you’re looking at the first two words and thinking, “but does it taste good?” Oh yes it does! read more »
May 23, 2012
My husband was not a fan of sweet potatoes. And then we joined a produce CSA and along comes a box containing quite a number of sweet potatoes. He was not thrilled. But I found a few recipes that were vastly different than sweet potato casserole, and now he likes sweet potatoes.
My son is a Health and Exercise Science major and has become a runner. He’s into eating very healthy. Sweet potatoes and black beans play very nicely in a healthy diet and they play quite nicely together. He found this Sweet Potato and “Un-Fried” Bean Tacos recipe on cHow Divine. Oh how divine it is! It’s simple and quite yummy. OK, I was skeptical about the combination of mustard and tamari (use soy sauce if you don’t have it), but it work. Well.
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