Manic Monday

Early this morning, Hubby and I set off on the motorcycles to ride to Angleton, Texas.  It’s not really a long ride, just about an hour, and fairly scenic through pastureland mostly with a couple of small towns on the way.

This is not something we would normally do on a Monday morning.

Thursday last week, when he was on his way out the door to work, Hubby mentioned that he had received a jury summons.  He wanted me to mail it back.  It was for today.

After he was gone, I noticed that he hadn’t signed it, which was a requirement for exemption.  After he got home, I had him sign it, and prepared to mail it Friday.  Then I noticed the date.

Obviously, it is all my fault that the USPS cannot deliver mail to the courthouse  that is mailed on Friday morning, and which needs to be received before Monday morning.  Especially since the courthouse is closed on weekends.

So dropping it off this morning seemed to be the only option.  I did suggest that we simply call, but that would perhaps be TOO easy.

Thus, I saw the foggy dawn arrive and then surrender to a gloriously bright blue sky.  Glorious, because it finally cooled down from the 100s into the 80s and 90s.  tomorrow it is rumored to be in the 70s!

Now it’s 1, and all I want to do is have a nap.

I really don’t care that yesterday was the actual day after Caturday.  We got up at 5:30 and went to the airshow.

So really, this fits today.  And this is exactly what I’m going to do.  For a while anyhow.

Then, I will create business cards for Groovy Noms, the catering company!   😛  (play superhero music in the background)

It’s not just a blog anymore…

Advertisements

Caturday Funneh

Somewhere in the Outer Limits…

If you’re still not on board, here’s some inspiration.

Of course, there must be food…

And the One Ring must go to the Mountain of DOOM!

Finishing up with testing.

That is all.  Have a great Caturday!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

When I worked at Whole Foods Market, I looked forward to this time of year because of the pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.  I ate a lot of other yummy stuff also, but I particularly like the combination of pumpkin and semi-sweet chocolate.

I do not like pumpkin pie.


Whisk together 1 1/2 cup flour, 1 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice, and 1/2 tsp salt.

With the mixer, beat 1/2 cup butter and 1 cup granulated sugar until fluffy, then add 2 eggs, one at a time, and 1 tsp vanilla extract.  Continue beating until smooth. Don’t overbeat, though, as it makes the muffins tough.

On low speed, alternately add 3/4 cup pumpkin puree and the flour mixture, beginning and ending with the flour.  Remove from the mixer, and fold in 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips.

Grease the muffin tin and bake at 350F for about 20 – 25 minutes.  cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then finish cooling on a wire rack.

Eat immediately.  Otherwise, they’ll be gone!  😛

They are especially good, I think, while the chips are still warm and melty.

And now that it IS that time of year, I’ll be doing a lot more with pumpkin.  I may not like pumpkin pie, but I luves pumpkin in pretty much anything else!

Thursday…Vera

I saw this, and immediately thought of Aggie!   Aggie is my hate-couture consultant, ya know.

I’d just wear yoga pants all the time!  Or PJs.

Food tomorrow.  I promise!

A Day in My Life

Yesterday I planned to get an early start finishing up some brownies and cookies that Mum needed for a luncheon today.  When I stumbled into the kitchen, in search of caffeine, I found instead…

Thousands of the little bastards invaders.  They were boiling out from under the cabinet in the corner, and making for the trash. I did have rib bones in the trash, but I’ve never seen anything like this.  Actually, I didn’t see them at first, I stepped in them.  😦

They then made their displeasure known in a way only biting insects can.

As I hopped around the kitchen swatting at one foot and then the other, Hubby passed by and asked what I thought I was doing.  I answered that obviously, I was practicing yoga.  He nodded briefly, mentioned I should try not to hurt myself, and moved on.

After disengaging the ants from my body, I went to battle with the 409.  I don’t have any pesticides, but this product will kill ants, as it contains soapy agents and ammonia.  I then gathered up the carcasses, and mopped the floor to destroy the scent trail.

Then I went to have coffee.

When I came back to start the brownies, the ants were back.  Like I’d never killed hundreds of their population!  So I called the office, and started killing ants again.  Maintenance came, sprayed, and the ants subsided.

Then I made brownies.  Brownies with a cream cheese layer and swirls on the top.  Yum!

Then I made cookies.  While I put up shelves that I’d been asking Hubby to put up for some time.  😦

When the cookies were ready for delivery, plated and wrapped, I started to plate the brownies.  The recipe suggested lining the dark metal pan with tinfoil, shiny side out.  GREAT idea to keep the edges from cooking faster than the center, and rising up against the edges.  Brownies look much prettier when they’re flat, I think.

BUT, the  *$%%& cotton picking tinfoil was stuck like glue to the bottom of the brownies.  GLUE I say!!!

I pried carefully.  I put them back into the pan and heated them.  Nothing was working.

Hubby, noting my distress, suggested flipping the whole thing upside down and letting gravity help.  He help the tinfoil while I used the Chef knife to slowly scrape them off the foil.  Finally, I was able to rescue and plate the brownies.

Sigh.

I delivered the whole hot mess order to Mum for her party, only about 3 hours late.  Fortunately, the party was a luncheon today.

When I arrived home Hubby was asleep so I went into the kitchen to fetch a much needed bottle glass of wine.   The ants were still gone from the floor, but now they were on the counter.  And I just didn’t care anymore.

I sat down in the quiet house to relax with my wine and a book.  Suddenly, I heard a strange noise like water running.  In the closet where the AC unit is.

When I pulled open the door, there was about an inch of water on the floor, and the walls were wet about 3-4 inches up.  So, I called maintenance again.

I get the feeling they are tired of hearing from me.

The maintenance guys arrived…again, at 9 PM.  They blew out some hoses, replaced the filter, and threw down some towels to dry the floor.

I mentioned the ants.  Again.  Nicely.  🙂

They went home.  I got the rest of the bottle another glass of wine and went to play WoW while Rat Boy got ready for bed.

This morning, the exterminator came and sprayed the entire house.  So maybe the ants will leave.  Or die.  Not just relocate.

Guess I’m feeling a bit bloodthirsty.

Blasphemy for Texans

I’ve crossed the line.  I’ve finally done her in ribs in the oven.  And they were pretty awesome.

And they were tender and  juicy on the inside, and crusty on the outside…  😛   I felt like a goddess!

I read up on ribs the other day at Amazing Ribs.    Had picked up a slab of baby backs on sale.  Yay sale!

So what did I learn???   Hmmmmmm????

A LOT.  😀

After rubbing the meaty side only of the ribs with olive oil, I made a crust of dried thyme and New Mexico chili powder, and coated the rack liberally.  Only on the meaty side.

Then, not having the suggested broiler rack, but having been given a heads up by The Queen on some kitchen innovation, I balanced a cookie cooling rack on top of a deep baking pan.  I’d have used a roaster if I had one!

They suggest that you keep an inch of water in the pan below the ribs, so the baking sheet barely cut it!  🙂

After broiling with the bony side up for about 8-10 minutes with the oven door open a bit, I pulled out the entire thing and flipped it over.  Turned the oven down to 225F and put it back in, meaty side up.

Then I slathered it in BBQ sauce.  I realize this is heresy to some, but we are a saucy bunch.  BBQ isn’t fun if you don’t get to suck your fingers!  😛

The result was some delicious ribs, done in the great indoors, looking and tasting like grilled ribs, while I went to yoga!  🙂

And didn’t have to clean the grill.

Hard to ask for more than that on a busy day.

Herb Crusted Pork Loin

A couple of weeks ago, I saw the Pioneer Woman doing a herbed pork tenderloin.  Fortuitously, the next week at the market, they had pork loin on sale!  Obviously, the stars were in alignment for me on that day.

I’m also happy when I get to make something for dinner that’s a little upscale, without using every pan in the kitchen!  😛

The trick to this is really getting the loin to cook without sitting in the juice at the bottom of the pan and getting soggy.  It’s really hard to call it a crust if it slumps off into the pan the minute you try to serve it!

I don’t have a roasting rack, which would be good for this, so improvisation was in order.

I sliced potatoes and onions very thinly and put them in alternating layers in the bottom of a 9×13″ pan.

The layers optimally will be about 2 inches thick.

Drizzle oilve oil, salt and pepper over your potaot foundation, cover, and bake at 350F for about 30 minutes, until the potatoes are just beginning to get tender.

While the potatoes are baking a bit, deal with the loin.  😛

Rub the loin with olive oil.  For this, i eschewed my favorite roasted garlic infused oil, and just used a good grade of Sicilian olive oil.

Rub the loin generously with the oil, and begin to pat the herb mixture onto the meat.

The herbs should stick in a nice thick layer.  I used Herbs de Provence, because I particularly like the mix of rosemary, thyme, basil, savory, and oregano.  It also looks pretty.

If you notice some bare patches, just get a small handfull, and press it onto the meat.  Then lay the loin on top of the potato and onion foundation.

Do not cover, as you don’t want to steam it, you want the herb layer to form into a crisp crust.  Bake at 400F for about 35 – 40 minutes.

Cover and rest the whole thing for about 5 – 10 minutes.  Then slice and serve with the potatoes and onion base, which will have now absorbed a bit of the herb flavor, along with some pork drippings.  Yum!

The pork will be a little pink, and very juicy because the crust holds in the juices.  The potatoes around the edges will get a little browned, so altogether, it really makes a nice presentation.  And you only have to wash one pan after dinner!  😀

Previous Older Entries Next Newer Entries