Thursday, August 30, 2012

BBQ Inspired Friday Feast

For the last few years my husband and I have taken the lead with Friday night dinner of Labor Day Weekend for the weekend long celebration at his parents' house. Another couple has helped us out and contributed to dinner the last few years but last year they moved to Vegas so we're on our own. 

We've had the Texas Chili recipe from a local BBQ restaurant, Redbones, on our fridge for over a month now so we decide to try that out and built the rest of the menu around that. I wanted to do something that could all be prepared ahead of time so when we got to New Hampshire we could just crack open a beer and relax. I wasn't sure if there were vegetarians in the crowd and found the Redbones recipe for mac 'n cheese so decided to do that. I thought cornbread may be necessary to soak up the chili and then of course some vegetables and with the heavy chili and mac 'n cheese I decided on a palate cleansing slaw. 

I did all the cooking today so everything is ready to bring and re-heat tomorrow. 

for the cornbread, I bought Trader Joe's corn bread mix, roasted, peeled & chopped jalapeños and added that to the mix

Mac 'n Cheese  I made the full recipe then after mixing half the cheese sauce with half the macaroni I added sautéd onion and roasted jalapeño in to the cheese sauce and then over the macaroni

red cabbage, carrots, fennel, cucumber, red russian kale
dressing in the food processor: lime juice, honey, scallions, jalapeños, cilantro, salt

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

cookie madness

What better excuse to make lots of cookies than Labor Day Weekend? I don't do much baking for me and my husband because it leaves just us to eat everything so I took the opportunity of my husband's parents 38th annual labor day weekend celebration to bake up a storm. We were given a Martha Stewart Cookie book for our wedding so I tried eleven recipes from there. 

Fortune Cookies
Almond Macaroons (these kind of failed so I coated their backs with chocolate and cut them into sticks)
Alfajores de Dulce de Leche
Earl Grey Tea Cookies
Biscuit Sandwich Cookies
Lime Meltaways
Chocolate Sandwiches
Cassis Crisps
Cream-Filled Chocolate Sandwiches
Rosemary Butter Cookies
Gingersnap-Raspberry Sandwiches

Monday, August 20, 2012

Necklace Repair

My grandmother had three daughters (and a son) and two granddaughters (myself & my sister, and 5 grandsons). So when she passed there was a lot of jewelry that her daughters did not want and was offered to us granddaughters. This necklace was one of those things. It's a very simple necklace, white beads on white thread, knotted to keep a separation between the beads. On the clasp it says 'Made in Western Germany.' I suspect it may have been a gift to my grandmother from my mother that she purchased while studying abroad in Germany. 

The necklace was also broken. I liked the simplicity of it so I decided to keep it and every time I open my jewelry drawer I'm reminded I have some repair work to do so that I can wear it. So today's the day, simple repair, I used embroidery thread which seemed to share the same characteristics as the original thread used. I pulled it through one part of the clasp, so that the center of the thread was in the clasp and knotted it off, then pulled both ends through each bead, knotting after each bead and tied it off at the other part of the clasp. Now I can finally wear this necklace. 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Tomato Treasure Hunt

I've ended up with a lot of cherry tomatoes this year. The tomatoes have pretty much taken over a whole 8 foot bed, 4 kinds of cherry tomatoes and three kinds of large heirloom tomatoes. It was not my intention to have so many but a lot of them volunteered from last year (so many in fact that I also have some growing in containers too) and I hate to pull them out when they're been working so hard to grow. I was hoping some friends would want some tomato plants but no luck this year. So there is an overabundance of tomatoes in our yard which has actually become a beautiful thing. It's like getting to go on a treasure hunt every morning. 

You have to look closely and find all the little tomatoes hiding 

and more ripen up every day! 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Sandy Toes

I've made a quick trip out to the West Coast driving down from Seattle home to California. 
It's gone by fast. But no trip home would be complete without visiting the Pacific, 
feeling the sand between my toes and getting kissed by the sea.