Monday, December 31, 2007

Palmiers!

Tonight we made Palmiers from the recipe in this month's Gourmet magazine. We cheated a bit by doing a Martha Stewart and using Pepperidge Farm puff pastry, but regardless these were super easy and really, really tasty!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Miss Baby's First Christmas!!

This picture not only signifies Miss Baby's first Christmas, but also her first Christmas present. Something's telling me in the future it will take more than a wooden rattle with some colorful circles attached to evoke that level of excitement!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Check It Out!

Its a map of the Rue de la Clef

Yet Another Reason to Hate Apple...

I got a new computer (yay!) and this evening I attempted to move my ipod library onto my new computer (since my old computer will no longer recognize that it is connected to the internet, yada, yada, yada). First problem? I find my iPod box, my iPod receipt, but no software cd. Okay, fine. The Husband asks whether I can't just download the software from iTunes. Indeed, I can. I do this... download the software. Then I figure since my iPod is essentially a flash drive and all 1000 songs are already saved to it I should be able to just plug it in to my new computer and have all of my songs transfer, right? Of course not. Nope, instead the iTunes software asks me if I want to "sync" my iPod with the newly downloaded software-- which would be great except that to "sync" it would mean that my iPod would be wiped clean. Yeah, that's right-- it's not that the content of my iPod would be transferred to my new library, instead the empty library would be transferred to my iPod erasing everything I've ever put on it. I'm sure this all boils down to copyright issues but can I just say out of the 1,000 songs on my iPod 99 have been purchased from iTunes and 901 songs have been downloaded from my own CDs. Hello! What copyright issues?? Now I have to go into my old computer and either a) save my iTunes library to a CD or DVD (which, mind you, my old computer can't burn, so that's a no) or b) do some sort of complicated thing where I save all of my iTunes library onto my iPod (FOR A SECOND TIME) and then use it as a flash drive to download it to my new computer. Why I can't just transfer the songs in their current state is beyond me.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Monday, December 24, 2007

Danger Will Robinson!

Today I was in the city with the Dad. I had bought tickets to Harold Pinter's The Homecoming because Ian McShane is in it and he's one of the Dad's favorites ever since the days of Lovejoy. We had a nice brunch and did some shopping about and then headed over to the Cort theater for the play. For those of you in the northeast you'll know that today was not the nicest of days weather wise. After leaving the play (we're not even going to discuss the content or summary of the play other than to say-- what???? what the hell was that all about???) we were heading back to the garage to pick up the wagon. It had started raining quite a bit at that point and at the corner of 50th and 6th (where far too much of my life has always seemed to converge!) we bought a $5 umbrella from a street vendor. Just as we were crossing from the southwest corner to the northwest corner a huge wind gust kicked up. The umbrella is caught up in the gale and I manage to hit myself in the forehead with the metal umbrella pole while simultaneously knocking my Burberry rain hat off of my head. At exactly the same moment the Dad's Borsalino "water-repellent, crushable" fedora is launched off of his noggin, landing in the street, rolling under a police barricade and trying to make its way across 6th avenue to Radio City (I guess it wanted to catch the final days of the Christmas spectacular). My hat ended up in a puddle (containing who knows what kind of city grime and antifreeze) and the Dad's hat rolled into 6th just far enough to gather grit and grime. There were no cabs, our umbrella was completely shot, our hats were soaked (and to add insult to injury somehow or another my shoes were leaking so my socks were wet-- don't remind me that I had two pair of wellies sitting at home safe and dry in my closet). All I can say is I've never been quite so thankful that the wagon has heated seats.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Note to Self.

When you have a six month old and you're going out to lunch, the first rule of baby lunch is: only order food you can either (a) eat with one hand (aka french fries) or (b) eat with a fork (a spoon is just asking for trouble). Case in point-- risotto appetizer, uses a fork. fork good. Turkey club sandwich: two hands, bad. I managed to eat half of one quarter of the sandwich and took three quarters home.

Season's Greetings from Sting

You buy tickets to one lousy Sting concert at Ticketmaster.com and suddenly you're enrolled in some fan website and you get emails like "Season's Greetings from Sting!!" I wonder if he knows how often I make his favorite pasta sauce???

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Dangerously High Estrogen Levels...

So last night I watched back to back episodes of The Real Housewives of Orange County and then I watched Dreamgirls on HBO OnDemand (all the while while wrapping Christmas presents, etc.)

As for Dreamgirls, I do have to say, despite all the singing, it was entertaining, however, that being said, it couldn't hold a candle to Chicago. I know it was directed by Bill Condon and it was up for Best Picture, but it was just one or two steps above something you'd see on ABC's Family Channel. Chicago was one of the few movies I've walked out of thinking, "that'll win best picture"... (one of the other movies was The Departed, but there I was thinking, "it should win BP, but you know Marty Scorsese's record...." good thing it was broken, but I digress.)

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

It's already

December 18th... where has the season gone?? I just finished decorating the house yesterday which included 80 feet of natural garland (which I'm sure will start dropping needles in about five minutes or so), one large tree and two smaller ones (pictures to follow). One of the smaller trees has been decorated with our cat tree topper so it is officially the "cat tree", not to be confused of course with the real cat tree --being the six foot carpet and tree branch concotion which adornes our family room. I still have to make Miss Baby's stocking and manufacture candy for the Husband to bring to the office. Let's not forget about last minute shopping (egads!) and all that other good stuff. Looks like it will be a busy week.

Primer...


Anybody else seen this wacky indy movie about time travel? Thoughts, anyone?

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Ever Have....

one of those moments... today I was in the family room and I was thinking about how I visited Mont St. Michel with the Mom and Dad back in college-- I'm not quite sure what got me thinking about this, but I was and then I thought about that weird movie with Sam Waterston that was filmed entirely on location at Mont St. Michel a la "My Dinner with Andre". About fifteen minutes later I put on the tv and while searching through the Guide I noticed that said movie, "Mindwalk" was on IFC. Now if only I could harness this power for something more useful....?

Here Again....

How Its Made:

Mozzarella Cheese and Pantyhose, compact discs and flourescent tubes....

Magnets, Cooked Ham and Crash-Test Dummies.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Pennington Quilt Works

Miss Baby and I visited the Pennington Quilt Works the other day (as they are located next to the Wooly Lamb in Pennington) and the store is *really* cool. I fear I may have yet another hobby approaching on the horizon. (Let's not forget the piano. I've made very, very limited headway on the melody portion of Eric Satie's 3 Gnossiennes and so far have down pat the first three measures of the bass part of Linus and Lucy, unfortunately that is by far the easiest part of Linus and Lucy. I have *a lot* to learn.)

Gourmet!

Okay so the newest issue of Gourmet came and can I just say, it has some wonderful goodies in there-- especially in the candy and cookie department. Palmiers, torrone, peppermint patties! Candy thermometer and hard crack stage here we come!!

ps. this month's content was so good it even made Padma Lakshmi's chutney recipes sound tasty!

The Great Debaters....

Yesterday we watched the Des Moines Register Iowa Republican Debates. The editor of the Register was the moderator (and may I just say, she seemed less than professional when she said that she'd try not to be a "bitch" about enforcing the time limits... a bit colloquial for a newspaper editor, no?) Fox News said that it was a bit interesting that Alan Keyes was permitted to attend as he doesn't have a campaign office in Iowa and apparently certain of the Democratic candidates were limited from participating in their party's debate today for the same reason. I'll tell you why Alan Keyes was allowed to participate--- because someone had to make Ron Paul look less crazy. Is it just me or is Alan Keyes like a bad Garrett Morris character?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

PR

Its the new season of Project Runway. For the past few weeks I kept thinking that Sweet "P" had a mole on her face near her lip. I just now realized its some sort of piercing (and we have an HD tv). So far, I have to say I like Kevin, mostly just because he reminds me of Joey Fatone (and I just think its funny that there are two people out there who look like Joey Fatone).

Monday, December 10, 2007

Our Trip Across Houston...

Miss S and I took some pictures the other day when crossing Houston from the FDR to the Holland Tunnel...








Saturday, December 08, 2007

Marmalade!

So today was our surprise party for the Husband's birthday. All went well and while the Husband did indicate that I had been "acting suspiciously" he did claim it was a surprise. As the party encompassed a gathering of friends I used this as a perfect opportunity to distribute jars of marmalade. What kind of marmalade? Orange marmalade! Jackie rightly inquired whether a search of the blog would bring up a posting about marmalade and I realized that I had completely ignored marmalade making in terms of food postings, so here goes!

So far I've made two batches of marmalade based on Ina Garten's recipe. The recipe is pretty simple-- 4 seedless oranges, 2 lemons, 8 cups (yes, 8 cups) of sugar and 8 cups of water. While the ingredients are simple, the act of marmalade making is a bit more complex (taking two days) but still, with the help of a candy thermometer, not too difficult.

First you need to slice the 4 oranges and 2 lemons very, very thinly. It's best if you cut the oranges and lemons in half and then in half again and slice them such that you're cutting the fruit so that each slice looks like a classic "fruit slice". Ina's recipe says that if you have a mandoline this process will be quick (the Husband wasn't quite sure why having a small stringed instrument would help....) and as for me, I've had a mandoline for years and years and still haven't figured out how to properly operate it.... so it was just me and my chef's knife. Make sure you put your fruit slices (and all of the juices) into a stainless steel pot (no flavor transfer). Once you have all of your slices in your pot, add 8 cups of water and bring to a boil. Once the mixture has come to a boil you'll add in your 8 cups of sugar, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Set aside your fruit/water/sugar concoction, covered, for 24 hours. The next day you'll bring your mixture to a boil again and then reduce to a simmer and continue simmering for 2 hours (stirring regularly). Also remember to skim off any foam that accumulates on top of your mixture. Once you've hit the 2 hour mark, next you'll increase the temperature again for another 30 minutes. You'll want to use a candy thermometer to confirm that the mixture has reached 220 degrees. The neat part is that the marmalade mixture will reduce quite a bit from your original 8 cups of water and much of the fruit will dissolve (even much of the orange and lemon rind!) During the 2 hour period your house will also fill up with a lovely orange scent. Of course, you need to keep your wits about you, otherwise after about an hour, and since I was no longer in the kitchen, I thought to myself, "gee, what's that citrus scent? Is the Husband brewing some of his orange tea? What *is* that?" then I realized, "HELLO, you're boiling 4 oranges in 8 cups of sugar..."

Once you've followed all the steps above it will be time to can! I can honestly say I had never canned anything before, and indeed I was never a fan of jelly jars-- specifically hating to eat at "Po'Folks" back in ATL as a kid because they served your drink in a jelly jar. Alas, feelings for jars aside, the Ball people seem to have the marked cornered on canning supplies. I had bought a 12 pack of Ball jars. After washing the jars you'll need to get them hot as in order for the jars to seal themselves both the glass jar and the contents need to be hot. The canning process turns out to be the one time it is good that our kitchen faucet puts out ridiculously hot water. I rinsed each jar thoroughly and (while holding it with an oven mitt) spooned marmalade into the jars... I made sure the marmalade was still at or around 220. Make sure to wipe down the mouth of the jar (so no marmalade is on the threads) and then seal tightly with your lid. Once the jars and marmalade cools a vacuum will be created and each jar will seal. I hadn't mentioned this to the Husband so he came into the kitchen and heard these popping sounds and wasn't quite sure what the heck was going on.

Marmalade will stay for up to a year sealed in the jar, once opened it needs to be refrigerated. For whatever reason (namely all the sugar?) once refrigerated the marmalade becomes rather stiff. When spreading after refrigeration you may want to pull the jar out of the fridge a bit before you're ready to use it so it can warm up to room temp and be easier to spread.

Leda asked whether we grew the oranges and lemons ourselves. Sadly, we didn't, but I am always mesmerized by the meyer lemon trees in the W-S catalogue. Just give me some time.

Moussaka!

On Wednesday we visited with Em and Max and Emily treated us to a lovely lunch from a local Mediterranean restaurant. I had moussaka which was *really* tasty. It was different from traditional moussaka in that it didn't have a bechemel sauce and it wasn't in a sort of stacked lasagna type format. It was eggplant in a very lovely ground beef sauce served over rice. I really enjoyed it, so I decided that I would try and make it myself for lunch on Friday.

Since the moussaka that I would be replicating didn't have bechemel I figured it would be pretty easy. Somehow or another I got a little off track.

I started with the meat sauce recipe that we used for pastitsio. I sauteed mire poix (the equivalent of one bag of pre-cut mire poix from Wegman's) in a little bit of olive oil, together with oregano and a bit of thyme. Once the carrots softened and the onions became translucent, I added one pound of ground beef to brown (breaking up the ground beef periodically so it is in very small bits). Once the ground beef browned I added one 14 oz. can of diced tomatoes, about half a small can of tomato paste, 1/4 of a cup of red wine, two bay leaves, salt, pepper, cinnamon and allspice (to taste). Then I let the meat sauce simmer for about 45 minutes. In the mean time I prepared my eggplant. I cut one large purple eggplant into disks, then cutting each disk into chunks. The eggplant chunks with seeds I tossed with kosher salt in a colander set to drain into a bowl. I left the eggplant chunks draining for about fifteen minutes, after which I rinsed them with water. Once the eggplant was ready I pan fried the chunks in a bit of olive oil until just golden brown. I then added the browned eggplant pieces to the meat sauce. (Now, all of that having been said, if I stopped at this point I would have been replicating the "not-too-traditional" moussaka from Wednesday, and it would have been accomplished in two pans and one pot (for rice)). But, can I stop here? Of course not. Now I decide, "well, maybe I'll go ahead and make the bechemel" Yeah, okay, that means dirtying two more pots. First I needed four tablespoons of butter melted, into that I whisked one cup of flour. While whisking, four cups of milk was heating in a separate pan, together with one bay leaf and a bit of all spice. Once the milk was heated I ladled in one ladleful of milk at a time to the flour/butter mixture, continuing to whisk. You may need to adjust the milk to flour/butter ratio to ensure that you have the right consistency. I prefer a bechemel that is less thick-- once you're happy with the bechemel, add grated Parmesan.

Now, at the time I had thought I'll just drizzle some of the bechemel over the moussaka... then I thought, "oh, gee, why not bake it in the oven?" So I set the oven to 350 degrees and got out one of my emile henry pans. I put one layer of meat/eggplant on the bottom of the pan and then drizzled over some of the bechemel, layered more of the meat/eggplant and then topped off with bechemel. Finally, I added some breadcrumbs on top. (You could melt some butter and toss the breadcrumbs in the butter and use that as the topping, but by this time I had used so many pots and pans I figured I would just use plain breadcrumbs!). I then baked the moussaka in the oven for about 20 minutes (until the moussaka was bubbly and golden on top). While the moussaka was baking I made some rice pilaf (out of a box, thanks to "Near East" foods....)


All in all I managed to use one large pan, one small fry pan, three pots, a colander, a big bowl and a baking dish. So much for a simple lunch.

Once the moussaka was done in the oven I let it stand for about 5-10 minutes and then served with the rice pilaf on the side. Good crusty bread or pita and some hummus would have been a great accompaniment. All in all it was pretty tasty, even if more complicated than the version which inspired it!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Please, don't do it...

To the person from Charlotte who visited the blog after querying Ask.com "where can I find a reindeer car costume?" whatever you do, don't buy one. If you must I guess you can put a wreath on the grill of your car (truly only acceptable if you have some sort of monster SUV) but, please I beg you, on behalf of your vehicle, be discreet.

Sports Unfiltered.

I hate sports (except for the Tour). I love Dennis Miller. The Versus channel has recently unveiled "Sports Unfiltered" hosted by Dennis Miller-- a weekly sports commentary show. Unfortunately, I'm hooked.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Moreos...

The Husband had been taking care of Miss Baby and he stepped away from the baby for a moment to get her bottle from the bottle warmer. He left her on our bed (safely secured with a mountain of pillows around her, making only one mistake.... she was within grasping distance of our bag of oreos.) He comes back and apparently she had managed to snag an oreo out of the bag and was gumming it quite contentedly and did not want to relinquish said cookie. By the time I got upstairs I was told we needed to change out Miss B's onesie (as indeed it was covered with oreo dust) and upon further inspection Baby even had a small oreo mustache and telltale oreo dust underneath her fingernails. Ah, the draw of refined sugar is a powerful one.

Royale with Cheese

Okay, so I don't mean to be politically incorrect, but I have to make a statement. Food establishments should refrain from staffing the order taking/cashier positions with folks who haven't yet learned to speak english. If you want to hire people who are still mastering the language, try staffing non-customer related positions like food preparation, clean-up (of course, provided that other staff members can act as translators...) but it's kind of problematic for customers if you give your order to a person who doesn't understand what you're saying. If I wanted to teach an english as a second language course I'd volunteer at my local library, when I want to order a sandwich I'm not looking for it to be a learning experience for all involved.

Case in point, every time I go to the local Panera it's a crap shoot as to what I'm actually going to get. The first time I noticed this I was with the Husband and we each got only half of what we ordered. I got the soup I was supposed to get but my sandwich was entirely wrong, the Husband got his sandwich and it was correct but his soup order was left off. I went back with the Parents and this time we got the reciept with our order and then had to proceed to work with the manager of the place to actually establish what it was we ordered (confirming that indeed we didn't order four soups, one sandwich and a half sandwich (for three people), but three soups and two sandwiches.

Tonight things got even better. We went to Burger King (admittedly, our first mistake). We ordered a king size number 9 (chicken sandwich, king size fries, king size coke), a king size number 4 (whopper, jr. with cheese, no mayo, no pickle, no onion, no lettuce, king size fries, king size coke) and a medium onion ring.

What did we get in return? Upon our arrival home it turns out in the bag was one King Size fry, one King Size Onion Ring, a chicken sandwich and a double Whopper (no cheese) with mayo, lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles.

I'm 32 and I couldn't tell you the last time I ate a hamburger, let alone a double hamburger. Burgers are all about the cheese, indeed it's really the only reason to eat them. So there I am and my cut of this bag of goodies is a double whopper and a king size onion ring. If I didn't have a heart attack after that meal I guess I'll be good for the next 50 years. What's further disappointing is that I've never ordered a Whopper before, certainly not a double one. I've always stuck to the Whopper, jr. Just like at McDonald's in my youth I only ever used to order the quarter pounder (with cheese). Then there was a long stretch where I wouldn't eat any meat so it was only McNuggets, then (since pregnancy, mostly) my burger order at McDonald's has been demoted down to just a regular cheeseburger. I have to say that I always envisioned that if I went for the giant burger it would be a Big Mac. (While Burger King's fries are very tasty, I'll always be a McDonald's loyalist).

"Big Mac is a Big Mac, but they call it Le Big Mac."
"Le Big Mac.... what do they call a Whopper?"
"I don't know, I didn't go into a Burger King."

Monday, December 03, 2007

Well, I do have a plane...

We didn't think it could get any better! Okay, so the Husband and I are total geeks. As everyone who reads this blog already knows we've seen the Code a bazillion times and counting. Finally when it seemed like STARZ! was going to potentially stop showing it (with almost Law&Orderian frequency) we even used up precious BestBuy rewards points to buy it on DVD. We watched the DVD, we even watched all of the extras, but nothing could compare to this.... last night I was up late working on Loan Documents and nothing good was on tv. I decided to order up The Code on Starz! on demand. So I've got it on in the background and early on I thought I heard Alfred Molina deliver a line somewhat differently than normal (because after all, we've seen it so many times we know all the lines).... then a while later the Husband starts watching and he notices new scenes. Yup, that's right. Starz! has some sort of "Choice Cut" director's cut edition with almost 25 extra minutes of deleted scenes. It was like watching a whole new movie! Things are explained, lines now make sense, Tom Hanks' acting is still bad, but what ho! It was a lot of fun!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Ironically,

during Austro-Hungarian week we've had a visit to the blog from someone in Budapest. However, they were, as usual, looking for "Sting's Favorite Pasta."

Friday, November 30, 2007

The Experience...

Is it just me or does Jeff Corwin really seem like a jerk?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

What?!?

Dems cancel debate over writer's strike??? Okay, let's halt part of our political process because the WGA wants more money off of DVD and download sales?? I mean don't get me wrong, I support the writer's strike (even if I do think it's silly that Heroes' Dec. 10th episode had to be re-edited in order to serve as a "season finale") but I do think its a bit silly for the democrats to cancel a debate because they don't want to cross the picket lines. These folks aren't the teamsters, they're writers! And, what's with CBS not intending to televise this debate nationally, anyway?? Random!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Hungarian Goulash

Tonight's Austro-Hungarian speciality was Hungarian Goulash. I had roughly glanced at the Goulash recipes on Epicurious and then called the Mom while I was in line at Wegman's to get tips and hints from her Goulash recipe. The Mom's advice included brown sugar and a can of tomato sauce. From the Epicurious recipe (also the only Goulash recipe in the Gourmet Cookbook) I used the caraway seeds, beef broth, red pepper and potatoes.

I began by slicing up one yellow cooking onion and sauteeing it with a bit of garlic in butter and olive oil on medium heat until the onions were soft. Once the onions were translucent I turned up the heat and added in one pound of veal cubes (aka "veal for stew"). I browned the veal, added in one tablespoon of paprika and one thinly sliced red bell pepper. Once the veal was browned I added in a bit of cooking sherry to deglaze the pan. Once deglazed I added about 3/4 of a cup of beef broth and one small can of hunt's tomato sauce. At this point I added in 1/4 of a can (18 oz can) of tomato paste, approximately 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar and one tablespoon of dark brown sugar. The I simmered the Goulash on low heat for about 45 minutes. During this time I sliced up three good sized butter potatoes and boiled the potato slices. Once boiled, I added the potatoes to the Goulash (together with a pinch of caraway seeds). Add additional red wine vinegar and brown sugar to taste-- you're going for a sweet/sour tang. I served the Goulash on extra wide egg noodles (with a bit of butter). It was very tasty and I was happily surprised that the veal remained very tender!

Next up: Wiener Schnitzel and Spaetzle!

Tricks of the Trade...

Need to put a baby to sleep? First, you need to have a sleepy baby. Either by bottle (aka food stupor) or by tiring out said baby via tickling, excessive playmat activity, driving in the car or the like. The add any one of the following elements: (i) Swan Lake, (ii) the noise from a hair dryer, (iii) the Beatles or (iv) the whirr of a vacuum cleaner.

Beaver, Rollo-- Road Hog!

Yesterday Baby G and I were in the WF parking lot and were almost plowed into by a woman in a gi-normous SUV. Now I'm all for SUV's but really.

I do have to complain about women drivers in the gigantic ones. I'm not talking your regular sized SUVs (i.e. the Pathfinder, Highlander, Cherokee, even LR3s, X3s, X5s and Explorers/Blazers)-- regular size SUVs are fine, people can drive them and not act like they're steering a tuna fishing vessel, but put somebody (especially these local WASP-Y "wear riding breeches and boots to the grocery store" types behind the wheel of any type of Escalade, Yukon, Durango, Navigator, Aviator, Excursion, Expedition, SUBURBAN and you've got trouble.

Here we were in the parking lot, going up *our* side of the lane and meanwhile I've got a big beige Escalade heading down the *middle* of the row as if it were going to ram the Wagon right out of its way.

Okay, note to drivers of vehicles so large they have their own zip code: let's not cruise the parking lot as if each row is "one way" at top speeds of 30mph plus.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Arachnophobia

Last night we were watching Heroes in the family room on the big sofa. The Husband was still in his dark suit from work and Baby G was asleep in his arms. I'm sitting next to the family unit and out of the corner of my eye I see a big giant black spider (and when I say big, I mean BIG) crawling on the Husband's knee. Being a girl, I of course start making hyperventilating screeching sounds about spider and baby, spider near baby!! Spider is on the move, going up the Husband's leg and he can't see it (blending with the suit)... in a split second I grab our tv remote and WHOOP! smack the Husband on the leg, killing the spider (which has now rolled up into a ball and fallen onto the couch cushion). I felt bad about whacking the Husband, but I had no choice! It was a tarantula in training heading for Baby G!

Austro-Hungarian Week!

This week is Austro-Hungarian Week. Technically, because of the dearth of Austro-Hungarian recipes on Epicurious, it will actually just be a three day week, but I digress. Last night we began a bit Germanic with Bratwurst and Warm german Potato Salad. I picked up the bratwurst at Whole Foods together with some really tasty hard onion and poppy seed rolls. I pan fried the bratwurst in a little bit of olive oil and when the bratwurst was almost done cooking I cut each link in half and added the beef broth, onions, apple cider vinegar and sugar from the potato salad recipe to the pan. Once the mixture reduced I added it to the boiled potato slices (and the bacon). I served the bratwurst on the rolls with some spicy German mustard.

Tonight we're going to try Hungarian Goulash and then we'll end with schnitzel and spaetzle.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Day 16....

Day 16 of the Stagehand's strike, come on, people! Broadway awaits!

Randomly, Some of My Favorite Movies

Amelie
Pulp Fiction
Manhattan Murder Mystery
The Da Vinci Code
Scoop
Ferris Bueller's Day Off
The Out-of-Towners
The Right Stuff
Reservoir Dogs
Max Dugan Returns
Bringing Up Baby
Everyone Says I Love You
Rushmore
Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House
Rear Window
North by Northwest
Charade
You've Got Mail
Ocean's Eleven
The Bourne Identity
Star Wars
The Empire Strikes Back
Moulin Rouge
Alien
Raiders of the Lost Ark
Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade
The Untouchables
Goodfellas
The Departed
Some Like It Hot
Annie Hall
The Philadelphia Story
A Christmas Story
Oscar
Reds
Tombstone
The Hudsucker Proxy
O Brother Where Art Thou?
The Royal Tennenbaums

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Gravy Train!

Thanks to an article in New York Magazine last month (in the Design Issue) I got this really cool Gravy Boat the other day at Crate and Barrel. The picture on the website doesn't do it justice. It's really neat looking.

Butternut Squash Soup!

Tonight, as a precursor to Thanksgiving, I had planned to make Butternut Squash soup. Last week I had made Ina Garten's recipe and it was okay but not as flavorful as I was hoping. I have had Whole Food's BSS before and it was really tasty so I went on the WF website to checkout their recipe resources but none were too helpful. I also consulted with the Gourmet cookbook and Epicurious, from all of this I got some ideas and then put together my own recipe...

1 2 pound Butternut Squash
1 Green Apple (Granny Smith)
1 Leek (green and white parts) chopped
1 1/2 cup diced mirepoix
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 1/2 cans (14oz. each) of vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch of garlic salt, kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Sautee the leeks and mirepoix in the butter and olive oil on medium heat for about 10-15 minutes or until soft (with leeks and onions translucent). Add vegetable stock, salt and pepper. Cut up squash and apple into rough chunks and add to vegetable broth, increase heat to bring to a slow boil, then simmer until squash is soft. Add remaining seasonings (with additional amounts of seasoning to taste, if preferred). Once the squash is soft, puree soup and serve.

I served the soup with home made pumpernickel and rye croutons and grated Gruyere. (I made the croutons by cutting up Pepperidge Farm Pump/Rye swirl bread, coating with olive oil and baking at 350 for 12 minutes... I also added some grated Gruyere on to the croutons before baking as well).

The soup was very creamy (even though no cream or milk was involved) and the apples gave it a fresh, light taste.

Do try and let me know what you think!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Photo Op Part Deux

These are the pics that didn't get picked for the art show.... what do you think?








Sexiest Man Alive

People has announced it's latest "Sexiest Man Alive" and this time the winner is Matt Damon. Kudos to Matt... I understand that both George Clooney and Brad Pitt have been campaigning hard for him and after the success of the Bourne franchise, certainly honors are deserved. While I can appreiciate Matt as a sexy guy, I do think the title of "Sexiest Man Alive" may be a bit of a stretch. That's a big title to wear. It's not just sexiest man of the year or sexiest guy this week, but it's sexiest man alive. While Matt would win hands down between best buddy Ben Affleck (sorry Ben, but you just have too much of that fluctuating Mariah-Carey-Esque metabolism thing going on, and let's not forget Gigli), but really, for Matt Damon to be the sexiest man alive there would have to be some sort of giant sexy man catastrophe-- like all past winners would need to have been at some sort of sexy man convention which is then tragically wiped out by an asteroid. We'd have to lose Johnny Depp, George, Brad, Leo DiCaprio, Taye Diggs, the list just goes on and on. Let's not even go into the contingent of sexy men from the British Isles (hello Ewan, Clive and the new James Bond). Then, there's always Antonio Banderas. Sure he's been reduced to doing voice overs for allergy medicine commercials, but still!

Feng Shui

The Husband has a Kitchenaid Pro-Line Espresso Maker. We bought the first one in 2004, had to have it replaced in 2005 and just had to have the replacement replaced. Thankfully, Kitchenaid's 2 year warranty program is really great. The first two machines were bright red. Unfortunately, when I called to get the new replacement I was informed that they no longer make red, they only have pearlized gray. The Husband noted that it was too bad that they didn't have red anymore since we were trying to decorate the house with little touches of red in each room. It is true that it's a shame they don't make red anymore, but now our new decorating theme can be: "touches of things that work".

Monday, November 19, 2007

Valley Oil...

This morning (while watching Rachael Ray) I heard the oil truck pull up. These are the same people who came and filled up our tank at the end of April last year (because there's nothing like getting 250 gallons of oil for summertime). We've made plans to bring the family room online with the rest of the house's heat system (which means a conversion from oil to gas) so we're looking to use up what oil we have left and certainly not invest in any new. Unfortunately I hadn't yet gotten out of jammies, so I ran down the stairs, threw on my Uggs and one of the Husband's overcoats (it was the first one in the closet) and ran outside the house shouting after the oil man to stop pumping. I was quite a sight in my striped pj pants and giant men's coat. The oil guy stops the pump and gives me the bill for what had already been delivered. $39 and change for 11 gallons, per gallon $3.349. Upon coming back inside I realized somehow or another I now smelled like oil fumes. I figure easily I had about $1.50 worth of fumes permeating my outfit.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Greek Week Comes to an Abrupt End.

Last night we had yogurt baked chicken with spanakorizo and potato, red onion and caper salad. The spanakorizo (spinach with rice and lemon) was very tasty as was the potato salad. Unfortunately, the chicken not so much. The baked yogurt and onion mixture which surrounded the chicken was good, but the chicken breast that the Husband got was tough and didn't taste right. Mine was okay but not compelling enough to keep eating. As a consolation, we had rice krispies as a midnight snack. Tonight Spanakopita was on the menu but alas, my heart's just not in it. I think we're ordering from P.F. Chang's instead. Here's to hoping the Griggstown Turkey we're having for Thanksgiving has a better fate.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Photo Op!

I just got notification yesterday that one of my photos will be shown in the Between Heaven and Earth exhibition at The College of New Jersey! More details to follow!

The Sesame Street Personality Quiz...

You Are Cookie Monster

Misunderstood as a primal monster, you're a true hedonist with a huge sweet tooth.

You are usually feeling: Hungry. Cookies are preferred, but you'll eat anything if cookies aren't around.

You are famous for: Your slightly crazy eyes and usual way of speaking

How you life your life: In the moment. "Me want COOKIE!"

Sense Memory

Ever have one of those moments where you remember something based on a taste or a smell? Today we had tuna on fresh rye bread from WF. The smell of the rye (it was even still warm!) made me remember that I used to eat cream cheese on rye bread. Yum!

I'm not a Conehead!


Mom just knits my hats that way.

Quest for Fire!

This weekend the Husband lit a fire in the dining room fireplace! Miraculously no smoke entered the house! Woo-hoo! Looks like we'll be doing this fire thing more often.


It Continues...

Tonight's Greek Week fare was Pastitsio and Dolmades. I have to say, I did not come close to Leda's mom's Pastitsio, but for a first try it wasn't bad. The taste was authentic but the recipe didn't call for enough milk in the bechemel sauce so overall the pastisio itself was a bit dry in parts (ugh!) As for te Dolmades-- they turned out *much* better than expected! They did taste like the real thing, I just needed some avgolemono sauce on top.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

RZR!

Finally, I have a new cell phone. I got a pink Motorolla Razor (like Thisbe's!), mind you, Dave has had a Razor for how many years now? I know, I'm behind the times. But it arrives and alas, no headset. Noting that, the description on the Verizon website said it would have a headset, but fine, whatever, I have a spare. However, my spare uses a regular old audio headset jack. Razor? There's no headset jack. None. Instead there's just a lowly data jack.

My first thought: No headset jack? Bluetooth? I can't get a bluetooth headset! Resistence may be futile but I can't assimilate! I did try to warm up to the idea of the borg headset, but I'm just too much of a luddite when it comes to cell phone technology. I'm still distraught over the fact that my Charlie's Angels Nokia from 2001 stopped working and that was five years ago! I was one of the last holdouts still using an analog signal. Don't even get me started about the battery life issues. Camera phone?? What for?? I always carry an Elph!

What to do? I'm at Target today and I manage to scrounge up a headset that uses a data jack. I probably should have bought two.

Greek Week Begins!

Tonight's dinner was Fassoulada (Greek Bean Soup) and Olive Bread. First off, let me start by saying that I should have read the Olive Bread recipe before jumping right in. I should have known something was awry when I thought to myself "gee, this is alot more yeast than I used the last time I made bread." Not to mention that there was so much "dough" I couldn't use the cuisinart but had to go instead with the Kitchenaid (plus dough hook) and even that was a bit overflowing. Yeah. That's because I had enough dough to easily make 20 rolls. The Olive Bread was pretty easy to make but for some reason the kalamata olives I used made the bread a bit bitter at times. Though, all in all, fresh baked bread (once you put a touch of butter on it) is always tasty. Also, though the recipe didn't indicate, I did bake the rolls in the oven with a cast iron skillet filled with water. This creates a steam environment which permits the bread to have a nice crispy exterior (a tip learned via the Cuisinart bread recipe).

As for the Fassoulada, it was easy to make and tasty. I started off with two cans of cannelini beans, a half a can of kidney beans, one can of diced tomatoes and two tablespoons of tomato paste. I added a bit of water (so that the beans and tomatoes were covered) and brought the soup to a boil. I also added in diced celery, onions and rough diced carrots. The recipe called for two bay leaves and a handful of chopped fresh flatleaf parsley. I simmered the soup (after it initially came to a boil) for about 60 minutes (or until the carrots were tender). I also added in mini pasta shells (because you can never have enough starch). Before serving I added salt and pepper to taste, together with a bit of oregano and a touch of balsamic vinegar.

Tomorrow's challenge--- Dolmades and Pastitiso!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Welcome to Greek Week!

I know its been a while since we've done a theme-dinner week, but it's back and this time the theme is Greek food! We're working with recipes from Andy Harris' cookbook, Modern Greek. We were going to kick things off tonight with Spanakopita, but we got lazy and decided instead to order a pizza. However, the pizza decision was cast after our 2 pound eggplant was already roasting in the oven. That being said, we did prepare Melitzanosalata (Eggplant Dip). This dip consists of 2 pounds of eggplant (roasted), garlic, a grated yellow onion, red wine vinegar, flat leaf parsley, olive oil and salt and pepper. I liked it (though the roasted eggplant was a bit more green than brown-- I would have preferred brown, so perhaps I needed to roast it for longer) but the Husband wasn't a fan. In case you were wondering the pizza (from Domino's) was okay, the chicken kickers, outstanding as usual.

So, for the rest of Greek Week we've got the following recipes on tap:

Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) with Pastitsio

Spanakopita with Ktipiti (spicy feta and pepper dip) as an appetizer

Potato, Onion and Caper Salad with Chicken Baked in Yogurt with Spinach and

Fassoulada (Greek Bean Soup) with Eliopsomo (Olive Bread)

As usual, I'll let you know how it goes!

Friday, November 09, 2007

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Whole Foods...

how do they stay in business??? Okay, I like going to Whole Foods. They have great humuus, really tasty crostini, that great mexican dip and the produce and meat selections are fresher than Wegman's, however, some aspects of their business model really confuse me. Take for instance, the type of folks they hire. Everybody seems well meaning and generally carefree. This is great for limited retail applications (perhaps a Starbucks, etc.) but in a grocery store? Case in point, I pick out a container of store-made guacamole. I didn't really notice until I went to check out that it didn't have a bar code (or any pricing information, for that matter). At check out my cashier flags down "Rotkar" the front end manager. He just shakes his head and waves his hand indicating "just put it in her bag." Yup, Guacamole not marked-- ever heard that joke "oh, no price tag, it must be free today!" well, apparently, at Whole Foods that's true. If it were Wegman's they'd have some sort of a code for guacamole by the pound or worse comes to worse they'd just not sell it to you and say it's your loss... WF? Oooops! We didn't mark it! Our mistake! Just take it!!

Then I had a dozen roses. When I picked them out in floral they were in a bucket marked $12.99. They rang up $14.99. Rotkar goes over to floral to check it out and in the mean time my cashier rings up the flowers at $12.99 and processes my AMEX. (Why she did this I'm not sure...) Rotkar comes back and says "$12.99 is for the conventional roses." (Mind you, I didn't quite see what was unconventional about the roses I picked out, but whatever). I say, "For $14.99 I don't want them. Can you credit me the $12.99?" The cashier explains that she already rung them up at $12.99 and processed my card. Rotkar says, "You'll take them for $12.99?" and I reply, "Sure." Done.

Granted, the bucket was marked $12.99, but still, no holding firm, no process the credit, no we'll just give you cash back... nope, go ahead, name your price!

Again, I'm not complaining, I got free guacamole and flowers at the right price, but the semi-hippie retail mentality just throws me!

Spoonula.

I hadn't actually heard Rachael Ray use the term Spoonula before (until just now). I thought it was just a joke.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Target....

Is it just me or does everybody drop a $50 (or more) every time you go in to Target? Sure, I go in to buy a box of Electrasol dishwasher tablets and I come out with four pair of seasonal baby socks, a monthly planner for 2008, various Johnson & Johnson baby products (on sale!), baby wipes (also on sale), antibacterial dish liquid (giant sized) and a toy cell phone (which probably works better than my real cell phone).

It's an S-N-P Thing Part Deux

So we're watching episode 2 of The Salt n' Pepa Show and Pep has brought a guy out on a double date with Salt and her husband. You have to love the following exchange:

Salt: "Red flag, red flag!!"...."So his woman stabbed him?"

Pep: "A guy hit me in the head with a can of paint, you know that story!"

Random Survey...

1. What were you doing at 0800? Sleeping, thanks to Nyquil.

2. What were you doing 30 minutes ago? Blogging.

3. What happened to you in 2006? 2006? What about 2007?

4. What was the last thing you said out loud? Hmpf. Something about brownies.

5. How many beverages did you have today? Too many ginger ales to count.

6. What color is your hairbrush? I've got one white clinique comb from ages and ages ago and then a Mason Pearson (tortoise shell colored) but I can't find that one.

7. What book are you reading? Ladies and Gentlemen, the Bronx is Burning.

8. What was the last thing you paid for? Baby outfit. Only moments ago.

9. Where were you last night? Same place I am now. Home!

10. What color is your front door? White. I know, I need a red front door, better Feng Shui.

11. Where do you keep your change? A) In the car: change purse that looks like an old coffee cup, B) At home: Change cup that looks like old coffee cup. I'm sensing a theme here.

12. What’s the weather like today? Surprisingly beautiful.

13. Do you want to cut your hair? That was last week.

14. Do you make up your own words? Of course! But my favorite word, "woobie", was not made up by me.

15. Name a friend whose name starts with the letter ‘A’. Why Ana, of course, from whom this (modified) survey was taken from... do pseudonyms count?

16. What does the last text message you received say? I'm not technologically advanced enough for text messaging. Do blackberry messages count?

17. Do you chew on your straw? Ugh. No.

18. Do you have curly hair? Sometimes.

19. Where’s the next place you’re going to? Short term: Doctor's appointment, Medium term: Greenwich, Longer term: Paris.

20. What was the last thing you ate? Brownies (see #5 above)

21. What’s the best movie you’ve seen in the past 2 weeks? Past two weeks?? I haven't seen any really good movies in the past two weeks. A few weeks ago I watched "Where Angels Fear To Tread". I wouldn't say it was good, but it was passable. I'm a sucker for those EM Forrester period movies. FYI: "Premonition" would certainly *not* fall into the "best movies" category, 2 weeks or longer.

22. When was the last time you did the dishes? Earlier this evening. Would be doing them now but I ran out of those little dishwasher detergent cube thingies.

23. Why did you answer and post this? Why not?

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Catalog Favorites

You know you've hit the bottom of the mail barrel when you receive a catalog called Catalog Favorites: A Showcase of Catalog Bestsellers. Yes, the concept is that this is a compilation of the best selling stuff from other catalogs. The problem is what catalogs. This isn't the Neiman Marcus Wishbook. Hell, it's not even the LLBean catalog. This rag is truly giving the Lillian Vernon catalog a run for its money in the mail-order crap department. Case in point, on page 11 there is the Reindeer Car Costume Kit, because really, what says "Diminished Blue Book Value" more than a red nose on your car's grill and a pair of antlers. Then there are the Seashell and Fish see-through Toilet Seat Covers (because doesn't every home need one of these?), the suspect looking "massager" and the ever-classy "egg yolk separator" which is designed so that the egg yolk appears to be coming out of a nose. Finally, in the "marketing mystery" department, there is the personalized snuggy bear baby blankets-- a "Favorites Exclusive!" Can someone explain to me how this item can be a "Favorites Exclusive!!" if the concept behind the catalog is that its a compilation of products found in other catalogs??? Doesn't that whole exclusive concept kind of contradict the compilation of other catalog's merchandise idea?

All I can say is it is clearly getting on to the holiday season because in addition to "Catalog Favorites" my mailbox has been filled with inane gift catalogs. In the past week alone I've gotten the Wolferman's bread catalog, the Chicago Art Institutes's Gift Shop Catalog, something called "The Artful Home", CB2 (twice), Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, LL Bean, LL Bean Traveller, LL Bean Home, LL Bean Women (is there any category out there that the Bean doesn't target?), FLOR, DWR, Williams Sonoma, Williams Sonoma Home, Lillian Vernon, Lilly Kids, Lily Pulitzer, some weird food catalog I'd never heard of before that depicted all items as cartoons, M&M World, See's Candies, Land of Nod, Athleta (like I actually go to the gym), Acorn, Signals (since when did they become oddly religious?), Garnet Hill (which gave me far too many ideas about home crafts), Sundance, Art.Com, and many, many others that I can't even remember. How the hell did these people get my address and why isn't Al Gore trying to put a stop to all this wasted paper???

Monday, November 05, 2007

Annie Lennox...

On Saturday night the Dad and I saw Annie Lennox at the United Palace Theater. It was a great show (I was personally very excited about Thorn in My Side and There Must be an Angel (Playing with my Heart)-- yay eighties!!!) The theater was really beautiful, even if in kind of an odd location. Who knew?

What?

I need my caffeine fix just like everybody else...














Saturday, November 03, 2007

Interesting....

I love to go on Statcounter to see where people are visiting the blog from, etc. As noted here in the past, I'm getting a *lot* of hits from "Sting's Favorite Pasta". Lately I've also, oddly enough, gotten hits for Tom Selleck's Avocado ranch, and at least one person looking for "vanilla scented garbage bags." Glad to help, everybody.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!















Miss S. also Halloween'ed as Elvis....







Elvis has left the building...












It's the hunk of burning love!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Bluto!

I love it when Baby G raises one eyebrow just like John Belushi in Animal House.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Postal Hijinks...

I went to the post office today to mail birthday gifties for 5280 Mommy and the Boy among other things. My usual post office closes at 1pm on Saturdays and since today there was a torrential downpour at lunchtime I wasn't able to leave the house until after the P.O. closed. That meant going to the Princeton Junction Post Office which is "open late for your convenience". This "open late" however is caveated by the fact that final mail pick up is always two hours before they close. Not to mention that the post office is then staffed specifically with people who really don't want to be there. Case in point. I get to the Post Office, package my goodies and then get in line. I'm 6th in line. There's one cashier and she's working out of the postal gift shop, rather than the actual postal window. All five people ahead of me have *lots* of stuff to mail. People keep getting in line. I realize we're going to be here for a while. Then we all kind of notice the loud talking coming from behind the "Passport Office" door. It's clearly a one way conversation (i.e. a phone call) and by the sound of it, not one related to passports or the post office. At about ten after four (yes, ten minutes *after* the post office closed) the manager comes out from the back to finally lock the front door so no one else can get in line (now I'm about third from the front) and she says to everyone in line how sorry she is that we've had to wait and that they close at four and that as we can see they only have one person working. To this I say, "what about the person in the passport office who's been on a personal call for the past fifteen minutes?" The manager looks at me a bit dismayed and says, "oh, no, she's handling passports." and I respond, "it doesn't sound like it." So with that the manager knocks on the door, is told to "hang on a minute" and then she proceeds to open the door and see one employee. No passport people, nothing being taken care of, just Maureen on her cell phone. Surprisingly, both the manager and the lone postal cashier thanked me. I guess Maureen does this a lot.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Snow?

While the drought continues they're making snow at Stone Mountain....?

Halloween Mischief...

The first Halloween. It's important. There are pictures to be taken, costume contests to enter. We ordered a standard issue pumpkin baby bunting costume for Miss S. But, another costume idea came to me in a dream (yes, in a dream) and I knew I had to make that one too. (Hey, nobody ever said you couldn't have two Halloween costumes). The costume will reveal itself soon (in pictures no less) but for now all I can say is hot glue and rhinestones are involved. It was very nostalgic as the last time I used hot glue and rhinestones was in high school. Alas, Ana and I bedazzled a jean jacket for our english teacher/yearbook advisor who was part of a country and western singing duo, the "Dixie Diamonds". Good times.

Big Days Out

Yesterday we ventured into the city and had our first trip to Central Park. The Hechsler playground was a nice surprise and Miss S. had quite a good time looking at all the other babies and toddlers. Interestingly the nanny to mom/grandparent ratio was probably 5 to 1. Heck, I think I only saw two grandparents total and about 5 or 6 moms/dads. Strolling through the wilds of Central Park avec Bugaboo only showed me that while my bicep strength has benefited from toting around 15 pounds of baby, the ye old respiratory system could still use some work. Should one really get winded pushing a stroller up over park's hills and dales? Probably not.
After CP, we had a lovely lunch with Dave at Brasserie. We had the Cuisine Rapide all around-- the french onion soup was tres tasty! Then we wandered about (noting that during the day we made the trek back and forth from BMW on 57th and 11th to the East side twice). It was good exercise, though I have to say that my style was a bit cramped once the ped I was wearing on my left foot developed a hole at my big toe which just kept getting larger and larger (encompassing more and more of my toes) until finally I removed it (in the elevator of the BabyGap flagship) and went sockless on the left foot. Ironically, by days end I ended up with a blister on the back of the socked right foot, while the sockless left foot was fine. All in all though, a good day was had.

Then, today we hit up Woodbury Commons with Thisbe and the Wee Kraken. We scored a very cute little a-line wool dress at Off Fifth and even a baby Burberry "Happy" scarf! Rounding out the shopping experience, we got some basics for the Husband at Brooks Brothers and also found a new puffy coat for yours truly. (To be honest there was an Andrew Marc puffy coat with rabbit fur collar and fur-trimmed hood that I *really* liked, but when I tried it on I looked a bit too much like I was part of the cast of The Day After Tomorrow. Instead I opted for a slightly less puffy and sans fur-trimmed puffy coat. I justified this by noting both that (a) I won't be needing to exclaim "we've reached a critical desalinization point!" at any time in the near future and (b) for the most part this winter I'll just be in and out of the car, rather than, let's say standing on the train platform freezing my butt off as an Acela speeds by at 70 mph.

Now, what have we learned? First, try and find peds that your toe won't put a hole in, second, traveling with baby has opened up a whole new level of mental mapping. Take, for instance, our city trek. One now has to know where all the elevators and good changing areas are within your particular city neighborhood. As an FYI, for those wandering about with Baby in the Big Apple, I have complied a short list of useful stopping locations in midtown (I never really expected that knowing where good bathrooms are would be so important, who knew?)

Obviously, first and foremost, a girl's best friend is the 4th floor ladies lounge at Saks. There are giant handicapped bathroom stalls (easily accommodating both mom and stroller), tables that can be used for changing and a very long banquette useful for feeding breaks.

Another helpful location would be the top floor of Barney's. While the folks in the Children's department are generally unhelpful, the bathroom on this floor is clean and well kept and has a stainless steel changing table. Also on this floor, outside of Fred's at Barney's is seating useful for bottle time.

Rounding out the Department Store destinations would be Bloomingdale's. The bathroom on the 8th floor (another children's department floor) has a good surface for changing (though I prefer the granite table outfitted with our skip hop changing pad rather than the designated changing area), and a giant handicapped stall.

I've found that restaurants typically are a crap shoot as to whether a changing table will be available and when in doubt, you can always try something on at Banana or JCrew or the like and use your time in the fitting room wisely not only for trying things on but also for changing and/or bottles, depending on locale and busy-ness.

Milk's Favorite Cookie...

At our four month doctor's visit, Dr. Sean tolds us that we could start trying solid food at any point between four and six months. So far we've tried rice cereal, oatmeal, sweet peas, sweet potato and applesauce without success. So I was figuring we'd give it more time and maybe Sophie would warm up to it. I figured perhaps she just wasn't too keen on the whole texture thing. Then we gave her an Oreo to gum. Texture clearly isn't the problem. I'm not quite sure what they put in the magical chocolate cookie goodness of an Oreo but it was a big hit. Additionally, oreo dust and baby drool is very adhesive combination.

As the Gawker T-Shirt said, "George Clooney Stalked Me"

I know by now it's old news but only in New Jersey would 27 hospital workers be suspended for accessing George Clooney's personal information without authorization after his hospital stay in Bergen County last month.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Thursday, October 18, 2007

To Boldly Go...

More casting updates on the J.J. Abrams helmed Star Trek pic. Okay, I have to say Zachary Quinto (aka Sylar) is a perfect choice for Spock, but Karl Urban as Bones!?! I mean I like Karl... he was great as the villian in The Bourne Supremacy, but as Bones? There is absolutely no resemblence whatsoever. He's a Kiwi for God's sake! He'd be a better villian... better than poor Eric Bana! I know, I know, Eric Bana made a failed attempt at the Hulk (which apparently is going to be remade with Ed Norton??) but he was great in Munich. You make one bad Drew Barrymore movie (hello "Lucky You") and you're relegated to being the Star Trek villian, a role less important than that of Karl Urban? Sure he'll be with the likes of Ricardo Montalban, but still. Then Sulu: John Cho. Harold and Kumar go to Azati Prime? But the question remains--- will James Cromwell reprise his role as Zefram Cochrane?

How to Stop an Exploding Man...

Here's my review of the latest fall tv season. Ah, there were so many hopes.

Heroes. Back again and just as many commercial interruptions as at the end of last season. So far the storylines have been fine but what's with having approximately 38 minutes of show for a one hour block of television? Just how many Nissan Rogue commercials does NBC think I will sit through before I'll just TiVo the damn thing and watch it later, commercial free?

Chuck. Like it. Close to loving it, will give it a bit more time. Given that this has a handful less commercials than Heroes I have been finding it actually *more* entertaining than Heroes. No matter how much time goes by Adam Baldwin will always just be that kid from "My Bodyguard".

Journeyman. Okay I know its lame and everyone says its just recycled Quantum Leap (but hell, I never watched Quantum Leap). Again, I know its cheesy and I'm kind of surprised it hasn't been cancelled yet but for some reason I'm totally mesmerized by the fact that Kevin McKidd looks just like Anthony Michael Hall. Perhaps in a future episode he'll go back to the past and meet AMH. One never knows, and speaking of name acronyms, whatever happened to PMT? Anyhoo, its semi-sci-fi and generally not crime based. I like it.

Cavemen. At least there aren't any Geico commercials while the show is on. I like that Joel works at a thinly veiled IKEA. This show could actually be funny but surprisingly there aren't enough "caveman" jokes. Instead its just like they're a bunch of hairy guys living in San Diego.

Carpoolers. Is it just me or is Jerry O'Connell kind of funny looking? It's like his face is a mask or something. Anyway, the show kind of has potential. As the Husband has noted it occasionally has some funny lines. I'll give it some time, perhaps it will hit its stride, god knows riding on the coattails of Cavemen isn't doing it any favors.

Bionic Woman. Sorry Dave, I couldn't sit through it. It lost me with Isaiah Washington and a trip to Paraguay.

Kitchen Nightmares. So much better than "Hell's Kitchen". I do prefer the BBC America version, but this isn't bad. All I can say is thank god I had never eaten at that Indian restaurant they showed in the second episode.

Reaper. What the hell has happened to Kevin Smith's career? Okay, I guess this means that Clerks and Dogma were just flukes and Jersey Girl really was about all he's worth? I will give it this much-- watching a typical episode of Heroes you've got a commercial by minute 6. Reaper? No commercials in the first 15 minutes. Then again it is on the CW.

Pushing Daisies. Yada, yada, yada. Everybody raves. Again, the Husband hit the nail on the head-- it's trying to be an HBO series. What kills it? That fricking narrator. I can't take the narrator anymore. The narration is only made worse when, at the commercial break, the same guy does the voice over for the latest quit-smoking scheme (you know, the one with the tortoise and the hare). Yeah, same guy. Make it stop. Please.

Kid Nation. Why did I TiVo this in the first place? Will somebody send that little girl with the annoying southern accent HOME?

30 Rock. It's getting funnier. But the Office? Two weeks in a row now they've done "full hours" of The Office. Ugh. Steve Carrell- you're not Ricky Gervais and let's face it, the British version wasn't that funny either. Let's just put on Seinfeld re-runs instead and be done.

Antiques Roadshow. There, that's good prime-time television I can stand behind. Now, let's keep our eye out for the episodes with the third Keno brother!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Take a Little Time to Enjoy the View...

This morning's daily View watching was irritatingly interrupted by a press conference from the President. (Why is it that he always calls these damn things at 11am?) Did anybody besides Miss S and I watch this? Are W's advisors telling him to beef up the Texas accent? And I loved his response to the reporter asking how he felt back in 1981 when Israel bombed the "power plant" in Iraq. To paraphrase: "I don't recall how I reacted, I was trying to make a living to take care of my family." Yes, but you're the president now, so from a historical point of view, surely, you have an opinion? I guess not. I also loved the line of questioning about Putin. Now perhaps I understand why these things are limited to being on at 11am.

Nobel Prize???

Okay, so Al Gore gets the Peace Prize?? Can one explain to me exactly how "An Inconvienent Truth" merits the *peace* prize? I mean hell, what about Leo DiCaprio, he drives a Prius and just narrated "The 11th Hour" and we already know he's "king of the world!" so why not give him the prize? Or what about Bono. I mean come on, Bono's not only best friends with Nelson Mandela but he's been wearing those goofy blue x-ray specs for years now, I think in the realm of celebrities "trying to make a difference" Bono has certainly more street cred vis-a-vis the Peace Prize than ol' Al. Next thing you know Sean Penn will be in the running.

It's an S-N-P Thing...

Got to love the Salt N Pepa Show on VH-1. But where's Spinderella?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Let Me Get This Straight....

If there's not a hurricane in the next few days Atlanta could run out of drinking water in 90-121 days? How exactly does one get itself into that spot? I guess when your governor is named "Sonny Purdue" just about anything can happen.

Discovery HD Theater

So we're watching some nature show on Base Jumping in Norway and can I just say, Discovery HD Theater is much cooler than watching Conan O'Brien in HD.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Trees. We LOVE Trees!

Trend Breakers....

We're watching this lame show called "Trend Breakers" on NBC 4 this morning and I love that they're talking about time travel. "Is time travel possible, and if so, where would you go?" Yeah, this is real news!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Le Transporteur

We've seen The Transporter II 50 bazillion times, love Jason Statham, deplore Matthew Modine, the villians are good, the stunts are great, we'll forgive the use of an Audi rather than a BMW. I had started to watch The Transporter once before and now I'm remembering why I couldn't make it through. The love-interest girl is so *boring*. Ugh. Could the pace of this movie *be* any slower???

Okay, it picked up a little bit, Frank spent a few minutes driving a beat-up old SAAB.

Social Security?

When Miss Baby was born we filled out a form at the hospital to get a social security number (because really, shouldn't she be paying taxes already??) Well the social security card came shortly after we got home from the hospital and I stowed it away somewhere safe and of course that means, as it always does in my family, that it's in a place so safe even I can't find it. Since we need the social security card for obtaining a passport I decided to just break down and order a replacement card from the Social Security Administration. And, while I was at it, I figured I'd get a replacement for myself since I haven't had my card since I don't even know when. I went to the SSA website to find out where to go and by putting in my zip code the website directed me to the closest office. That meant the office in Trenton. Yeah, okay, I made the mistake of getting my NJ Driver's License at the DMV in Trenton and I decided then and there that I wouldn't be traveling to Trenton for anything else. Does the SSA website have a link for you to locate all of the offices within a particular state or locality? (You know, like if you were on the Gap's website and wanted to find all of their stores in NJ)... No, of course not, instead I have to sit there and jockey between the Post Office's zip code locator and the SSN's website trying to figure out zip codes of local towns that are far enough away from here that I wouldn't be directed back to Trenton. We're not even going to discuss the office in New Brunswick, instead let's just say that today we went to Somerville. The folks at the Somerville office were very helpful and the experience was much quicker than I expected (even given the whole "step right up and take your deli ticket number" atmosphere).

The first thing that happens when I step in the door is that I'm asked by a senior citizen volunteer if I have an appointment (can you even make appointments??) No, I say. Then I'm asked what I'm here for-- I say, replacement cards. Do you have proof of identification? To that I state that I have my daughter's birth certificate, immunization record and insurance card. Then I'm told: "Well, you know, a birth certificate isn't proof of identity."

Okay, a birth certificate certified by the health department in the locality where she was born *isn't* proof of identity? (Granted-- I knew this already from the SSN website, and hence that's why I had the immunization record) Isn't this a little bizzare? The immunization record was all of one printed page with Miss Baby's name on it and the name, address and phone number of the doctor's office with a notation as to when she had her DipTet shot. I could have typed it up at home. It wasn't on letterhead, it even vaguely looked like it had been printed on a dot matrix. I'll give you that the insurance card is a little more reputable, I mean, after all, it is laminated. Certainly by having an insurance card I'm showing that a) I'm not on medicare and b) I have gone to the trouble of reporting a birth to my insurance company and am paying some sort of premium for this little person, but then again, how does Oxford actually know she exists? The people at the Health Department actually have access to the birth record from the hospital, so shouldn't the "birth certificate" carry a bit more weight than either the immunization sheet or the insurance card??

Note also that the birth certificate doesn't prove "identity" for purposes of the passport either, yet a baptismal record will. Can anyone explain to me why it is that the Federal Government apparently puts no value on documentation provided by local and state municipalities? Isn't this a little odd? They'll trust Oxford and a baptism certificate but not the health department?

I can't wait to find out what kind of a debacle obtaining a passport will be.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

In the "What is The World Coming To" Department

this week's In Touch cover story is: "Angelina gains 10 Pounds!"

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Is It Just Me

or do you agree that J-Lo and Alan Greenspan is an unexpected guest combination on David Letterman?

Sting's Favorite Pasta

I'm amazed at how many hits I get for the "Sting's Favorite Pasta" entry.

Also, interestingly, someone from DC viewed a link to one of my posts that mentioned "homeland security".

Got to love Statcounter.

Thanks to the Thisbe Family!

This afternoon we had a lovely visit in P-town with the Thisbe Family! including a trip to the Bent Spoon for ice cream. It was a happy fun birthday treat! Yay!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Random Thoughts...

Last night I watched The Holiday. Ugh. Didn't the producers or the casting director realize that generally speaking Cameron Diaz is not someone that women relate to? Yeah, sure, she's fine in Charlie's Angels or There's Something About Mary (to which the Husband noted Chris Elliott and even Brett Favre were good in that movie), but in a "romantic comedy"? She's no Meg Ryan or Sandra Bullock. The only good thing about the movie was her sweater wardrobe. And, Jude Law? How can one take Jude Law as a single dad seriously after Nannygate? Do the people who put this movie together not read the tabloids? And poor Kate Winslet? I've said it before and I'll say it again, the woman puts on a few pounds from the days of Titanic and her love interest goes from Leonardo DiCaprio to Jack Black??? I mean true Jack Black's performance in the film was oscarworthy compared to Cameron's but still!

Next random thought: Just how fast to infant's fingernails grow?? It seems as though we're trimming Miss S's nails every five minutes and due to the fact that she's reached the height of her squirmy phase we have recently had to move to clipping her nails while she sleeps. It's an interesting state of affairs when it is actually easier to clip the cat's claws...

More Movies.... Blood Diamond. It was The Beach all over again, just with a political message. And riddle me this one, why, if you previously worked as a gun runner and "soldier of fortune" would you not wear a bullet proof vest? Who'd have thunk Leo would get sidelined by that rare bullet to the armpit.

Birthday Shout-Out

October 8 is not only Columbus Day this year but is also the birthday for the Mom, Matt Damon, Sigourney Weaver and the infamous Chevy Chase. Happy Birthday, everybody!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

"Free"Public Library Part Deux

Okay, for comparison's sake, I checked out the library card requirements at the New York Public Library. All you have to do is live in NEW YORK STATE, work in NEW YORK STATE, own property in NEW YORK STATE or be a student in NEW YORK STATE and your library card is free. That means me, still maintaining a work address in NYC can get a free library card. If I lived in Angola, NY or Watertown or any other farflung location I could also get a card. Clear on the other side of the state! Now, if you can't meet any of those options you can buy your library card for $100 per year. Now explain to me why my property taxes in New Jersey can't create a state wide library system???

"Free" Public Library....?

So I am utterly adverse to the concept of a "lending library" due to my Howard Hughes like germ-phobia. While I used to use the local library back in Marietta, and obviously used the library at Cornell, it was my time living in New York that gave me a second thought about reading a book which may have been in the hands of any of the other 8 million people in the city, but I digress. In Princeton there is a brand new lovely library. On a whim I visited the Princeton Public Library website to see what knitting books they had available, thinking, perhaps it would be more cost effective to just borrow a pattern book rather than forking over $$$ at the local B&N if there was only one pattern I was interested in (case in point: "Twinkle's Big City Knits", do I really need to own this when all I'm interested in is one measly shrug pattern? NO.) Alas, the library didn't have Twinkle's Big City Knits, but it did have at least three books by knitting guru Debbie Bliss including one book with a pattern for a shawl collared baby sweater that I have been contemplating knitting up for Miss Baby. Great, I decide to take the plunge and the library website is so sophisticated that I was not only able to review the book's table of contents, but I could also reserve it online! I clicked on the link to get my library card and was hit with the following information:

"Free cards are available to all residents of Princeton Borough and Township, including those in university housing. Just fill out a small card, show identification and proof of residence, and receive your card immediately. Cards are renewed every 3 years."


"Free cards are also available to non-resident Princeton property owners, business CEOs, teachers who work in a public or private school in Princeton, librarians and literacy tutors or their students. Cards are renewed annually."


"Other non-residents may purchase cards for fees equivalent to the tax payments of local residents. The fees for one card are: $30 for 1 month; $90 for 6 months; or $150 for 1 year. Cards for additional household members are $10 each."

And, just to clear up any confusion:

"Princeton Area Residents: Parts of several other municipalities share Princeton ZIP codes and mailing addresses. In addition, many area subdivisions not within the border of Princeton Borough or Township include the word "Princeton" in their names. While we are unable to offer free borrowing privileges to residents of these communities, we can direct people to the public library that serves their local community."

Yes, that's right, if I want to check this book out I'd need a subscription. A subscription that is thirty dollars per month or one fifty per year. WHAT?? Am I crazy? First of all, since when is it the borough and township that runs the library? What about having a county wide library system? Secondly, if my driver's license says I live in Princeton and the Post Office says I live in Princeton, why exactly is it that the folks at the library think I'm a non-resident? Exactly what part of my property tax is going to fund the library?? Okay, I don't mind having to fork over some cash if they really insist but $150 per year? Give me a break. Personally, if I'm going to spend $150 I'd rather just buy the books and get to keep them.

Now I think I finally understand why so many people just sit at Barnes and Noble reading books and magazines as if they were in a library-- because it's free.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

French Vegetables, Kind Of...

Tonight I cheated and picked up a lemon garlic rotisserie chicken at Wegmans. But, not wanting to go completely pre-prepared, I made the vegetable sides... we hadCaramelized Shallots, a Vegetable Tian, Parmesan couscous and a loaf of pepperidge farm artisan bread. The Husband not only actually put butter on the hot loaf of bread but he also suggested that the vegetables be put on the rotating menu. The Tian was very easy (though it does take about 40 minutes to roast in the oven)... I stuck with Ina's recipe for the most part (adjusting the ingredient amounts as I was making it just for 2 instead of 4 to 6) and changing up the potatoes and tomatoes due to a small vegetable emergency. For some reason the tomatoes I bought earlier in the week decided to become some sort of science experiment along with two of the three white potatoes. Luckily I had a reserve of alternate tomatoes and potatoes so I ended up using one yukon gold potato, two small red potatoes and one white potato and instead of two regular tomatoes I sliced up a bunch of grape tomatoes and tossed them on top of the layered potatoes and zucchini (my zucchini, unlike the potatoes and tomatoes were unscathed)... Overall I liked the Yukon Gold potato slices the best, because after all Yukon Gold potatoes seem to be the equivalent of potato crack. The vegetable slices were placed on top of a layer of sauteed onions and then roasted in the oven for about 40 minutes or so.

For the caramelized shallots I wasn't able to keep them together as Ina's recipe suggests since I managed to obtain the world's largest shallots. Instead of a bunch of small shallots making up my pound I had about 4 giant ones. So, I cut them into quarters, sauteed them in butter with a bit of sugar and red wine vinegar and then I placed them in a baking dish. Once in the baking dish I added a bit of cream and put some bread crumbs on top and added them to the oven with the Tian. Very, very tasty. Topped off with a bit of couscous (what is possibly the easiest starch in the world to prepare) and accompanied by the rotisserie chicken, all was right with dinner.

Avocado Ranch...

So, I've known for years that Tom Selleck has an Avocado farm, but the question is, how do you know if those Hass Avocado you're buying at WF are from Tom's farm?? Really, he should market those better.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Jane Austen Book Club

Okay Hollywood. I liked the Jane Austen Book Club. It was an easy read and a decent book overall, but the movie version?? Ugh. What's with that cast!?! It's like a lame version of a Lifetime movie. I like Emily Blunt (thanks only to TDWP), but Maria Bello (sorry, just don't like the look of her...), Amy Brennemen and Kathy Baker?? Not to mention, Jimmy Smits? (What is this, get Denis Franz and its an NYPD Blue reunion). Anyhoo, that's just my two cents.

ps. on a completely unrelated topic... I feel that the use of "Anyhoo" has been completely legitimized, thanks to this past Sunday's On Language by William Safire in the Times Magazine.

Just a Thought....

So, if Britney Spears' has lost custody of her sons, my question is... shouldn't they just skip K-Fed and go straight to living with Shar Jackson? I mean, that's where Kev's other kids are, right?

Croque Monsieur

Tonight's dinner was Croque Monsieur. We used Ina's recipe from Barefoot in Paris. It was really easy and very tasty! In addition to gruyere and parmesan I added extra sharp cheddar to the cheese sauce. I served the sandwiches with a salad of mixed greens and baby roma tomatoes with a lemon vinagrette (and goat cheese on baguette slices). We finished things off with fresh baked brownies! (out of a box)... I have to say, the roux that Ina has you use for the sandwiches is essentially the same as she has you use for her Macaroni and Cheese. Let me just say, we love the roux.
ps. Last night we made "Sting's Favorite Pasta" again. I highly recommend it!

Monday, October 01, 2007

Friday, September 28, 2007

Less Than Accurate...

Today was Miss S's four month doctor's visit. This goes to prove that the scale apparatus at Wegmans is less than accurate. While our informal "weigh in" reflected a clothed weight of 12 and a half pounds, the official doctor's office calculation was 14.6. Talk about a margin of error. Additionally, our informal length measurement had been 26 inches, the doctor's measurement was 25 1/2 (not bad, but I still say she's 26).

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Burgers and Observations

So it was a good night. We had french fries and mini roadside slider burgers with velveeta (shhhh, don't tell the Husband) and baby roma tomato slices on sweet Hawaiian rolls and the Da Vinci Code was on, so obviously we had to watch it. It finally hit me... Based on Tom Hanks' line delivery throughout the whole movie, it should have been more aptly titled "You've Got Grail".

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Alas, More Random Thoughts.

This morning I had a cavity filled. Nothing like having a dremel tool in your mouth at 8am and having your dentist singing along to "Sweet Caroline". There's a time and a place for Neil Diamond. During a dental procedure isn't one of those times or places.

Then, later in the afternoon, the deer family came to visit the back yard. Normally this is a fine occurrence, cute and whatnot. Today, however, I found out a bit too much information about our deer family. Specifically that the two smaller deer are apparently still breast feeding. Yup, there I am walking through the family room and I just happened to look out the sliding glass door and the two smaller deer ran up to the mom deer and then just started chugging away. I understand this is a natural process but I felt a bit too much like I was part of a camera crew for Marty Stouffer's "Wild America" I even kind of felt like I was invading their privacy, but then I did remember, it's my backyard! At least they weren't humming "Kentucky Woman".

Monday, September 24, 2007

Exersaucer

Should the exersaucer assembly instructions really be 17 pages?

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Weigh In.

Yes, last night (after visiting the Steinway piano event at the McCarter Theater.... I'm sorry, I just didn't know they start at $56,700 for a new one...) we took Miss Baby to Wegmans. While shopping in the produce department we thought this was the perfect opportunity to do an "informal" weigh in on one of the produce scales. According to the scale next to the lemons and limes Miss S. is about 12 and a half pounds (obviously we'd need to adjust the tare weight to take into account her outfit... but since she wasn't dressed like someone doing a floor show in Vegas I doubt her onesie and skirt combo added that much weight).

Update on Baby's "Big" Adventure

One thing I forgot to note in the post about our trip into NYC was that while out and about we managed to roll past two productions being filmed. The first was the CW's "Gossip Girl" (around Madison and 50th) and the second was an "Untiled Avery Pix, Production" on Madison in the 60s. When walking past the "Untiled" some other pedestrians noted that they had just seen Chris Noth step out of a trailer. Me, being completely oblivious, filed this away and while riding home that evening mentioned it to the Husband and we both said: "Oh, it must be some USA movie." Yeah, think again! It seems that the Sex and the City movie began filming in various locations around New York this week!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Talk About Not Having Any Free Time...

An article in last week's New Yorker magazine noted that a 1969 and 1971 study of the !Kung San tribe of Botswana revealed that the women of the !Kung San "breast-feed [their babies] every 13.69 minutes for the first one to two years of life."

Shout Out to David and Emily and Baby's Big Adventure!

So yesterday was quite an exciting day. The fam headed into the city (Husband off to work and Miss Baby and I off for a day of fun and adventure). We got in around 11 and went to The Job where I got to introduce Miss Baby as the "cutest baby ever", noting that, the general consensus was that she looks like the Husband. At about a bit before 12:30 we headed over to Saks and met Thisbe and the Wee Kraken for a bit of shopping and lunch at the newly renovated Cafe SFA (see below)




Sophie was a bit bored by the menu, but who could blame her-- she knew she'd be getting formula anyway.





After lunch we did some shopping (including a fun visit to H. Stern). Thisbe and WK left us in the afternoon and we stayed on wandering around the East Side hitting up many exciting shopping destinations (including the kid's floor at Barney's where we picked up a very cute little stuffed monkey), Bonpoint (where clearly only Jerry Seinfeld's kids and Barron Trump can shop...), the more hoi poloi Baby Gap on Third Ave and Bloomingdales. At 7pm we met up with the Husband and David and Emily for a fun dinner at Dos Caminos Third Avenue (which replaced the formerly dreadful La Maganette... sure, we move out of the neighborhood and they put a Dos Caminos on the corner of 50th and Third and a Bliss Spa at 49th and Lex, what luck!) We look forward to the impending arrival of David and Emily's little person, as soon, we will be six at dinner!

Really, just about anyone can use Blogger...

Brrr!

Much Better than Meatloaf



Tonight's "comfort food" was Parmesan Chicken served Milanese style. I used Ina's recipe, but added sliced baby roma tomatoes to the greens. We had this served with spaghetti (with olive oil and lemon artichoke pesto) and a warm baguette. It was pretty tasty! This I would definitely make again.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Meatloaf, Meatloaf Double Beetloaf

I hate meatloaf!

While the sundried tomato turkey meatloaf was *okay* the looks of it alone proved enough to warrant a permanent ban on "loaves" of anything besides bread in this house. I'm sorry, but after you've made really tasty, appealing looking food, one really can't serve up meat formed into a brick.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Welcome to Comfort Food Week...

This week is officially comfort food week. Now, while there are many, many comfort foods out there, we can only pick a few. Tonight's comfort food is Chicken Pot Pieeeee! This time around I did add a bit of white wine to the broth and I've also added in mushrooms... Tomorrow we're trying our hand at (gasp!) Sundried-Tomato Turkey Meatloaf with mashed potatoes. Wednesday is off the schedule since we're meeting Thisbe and the Wee Kraken in the city for some quality time at Saks (aka our Happy Place). (But, on a comfort food side note, while in the city we are planning to lunch at the Saks Cafe, provided its renovation has been complete. All I have to say is if the people at the Saks Cafe don't want to have a small international incident on their hands it is my grave hope that they have retained their half tuna sandwich and cup of corn chowder on their menu...) Back to comfort food week here at home, the next three recipes are Mac and Cheese, Chicken Milanese with pasta on the side (continental comfort food) and Potato Leek Vichyssoise. Recipes to follow and as always, we'll let you know how everything goes!