I like pretty pictures.
If the pictures happen to be about food or home decor – all the better.
This past Christmas a new pal gave me a really great book called Edible Selby. Although I didn’t know it was great until now. I don’t deserve new friends. Don’t tell my old friends.
This past weekend I was reading the New York Times and found an article by the same author about a taco stand in California. This is why I love the Times. You may read it for the late breaking political and social news. I read it for its taco coverage.
Todd Selby is an artist, an author, a humorist and more. I have been reading his book all weekend.
It’s not a cookbook. It’s a book about cooks and cooking and food.
14 Apr 2013 Leave a Comment
I like pretty pictures.
14 Feb 2013 6 Comments
in Cooking! Tags: baby fish, bay scallops, cooking, Family, fish, Fishing, food, humor, Husband, Kids, Life, love, marriage, pasta, Photograpy, Restaurants, seafood, shrimp bay, squid, valentine s day, Valentine's Day, web md
Today’s post was going to be a mushy, gushy Valentine cooking post. A step by step of me making my husband’s all time favorite pasta – fra diavolo. Shrimp, bay scallops and squid. I was going to talk about my favorite shortcut. Rao’s tomato sauce. It’s $9 a jar – and yes, making real sauce is easy and it costs $2 – what’s your point? I was going to tell you not to be scared of shortcuts, or squid. That it’s no biggie. I’ve done it before. It cooks in a couple of seconds and people are impressed. And I had pictures…tons of freaking pictures. I was going to show you how brave I am. Buying, cleaning, chopping squid like it was my business. I’ve done it before. No big thaang. But then something happened. (if you are my husband, for the love of god, stop reading this).
As I cleaned the squid…I found….gulp….a little baby fish inside!!
After I stared at it for a few minutes and the nausea had worn off, I washed my hands and did what all smart people faced with oddities do – I YouTubed it, and googled it, and Wiki’d it, and Web MD’d it (just in case). The people of the internet told me it’s normal. Happens all the time. Feed it to my cat, etc. But even now, hours later, I shiver when I think of it. Maybe the squid had a last meal and didn’t have time to finish, maybe it was the thing they used to lure the squid. Alls I know is, it ended up in my kitchen.
I’ve been changed people. Some sort of gross seafood cherry has been popped. I had to come to terms with it quickly. My kids or my hubby could not/should not ever see this. You don’t understand. My husband, I love him, but he’s no adventurous foodie. He gets really grossed out really quickly. And I couldn’t let my kids see it – the horror the horror!
So like every good mother and wife, I got rid of the evidence and pretended all was good.
Now, safe in my bed, I can finally come to terms with it.
Here’s what I went through folks. Happy f’ing Valentine’s day…
I’ll start with the harmless ones first. Prepare yourselves. Here’s the shrimp/sauce/squid. I forgot to take pictures of the scallops because – did I mention – I found food inside the food!! It’s like a bad M.Night Shyamalan plot twist. Back to my sordid story.
Please note that my cutting board is…well..it’s all cut-up. These are not just props people. This stuff gets used!
Here’s the fresh squid. Yes, it looks slimy but there’s no smell and it handles easily. It also easily cuts into the calamari ringlets.
And then, as I clean it. I notice this little guy or gal or it. Do you want to hurl like me?
I want my mommy.
Reason number 8,222,329 to be a vegetarian: I’ve never found a carrot in the middle of my bagel. Or an almond in my banana. I’ll stop now.
02 Jan 2013 1 Comment
At about 6am this morning I came to grips with the fact that the holidays are over and it’s back to work, school, and reality. After a good shower cry (only half kidding) I decided to go downstairs and tackle some emails, return some calls and get 2013 under way. By 7:15 I was crying again (only half kidding).
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my fill of all the merriment. I love this stretch of hibernation. I love the no gift buying. The no cookie baking. Not getting all my calories from a glass of Bailey’s. It’s time.
So here we go… Resolutions! Putting away the decorations! Washing all the guest linens! Conference calls! Presentations! Homework! Gulp. Sigh. Sorry for shouting. That didn’t work. Not excited in the least.
My lack of motivation can be summarized by my trusty oven. It cleans itself – without me doing one little thing – and I still only get to it once a year.
26 Nov 2012 4 Comments
There were some funny moments on turkey day. I want, no I need to share this with you! Are you sick of Thanksgiving posts yet? I promise, last one! Sorry about all the exclamation points! I’m like….excited.
Last year, in a moment of desperation when carving the turkey, my husband – a holiday Macgyver (too young for this reference?) made a makeshift apron from the only thing he could find. A Glad garbage bag. Now it’s a tradition… or something like that.
Welcome Ty. Or Tie.
Hee Hee Hee. I laughed for hours. Seriously. Send help.
Finally, ever see a line in a kitchen? My lovely sister-in-law was thinking through the perfect piece of turkey when this crowd formed behind her.
24 Nov 2012 2 Comments
Before I tell you about the sangria, let me show you my turkey. Where are pictures of your turkey?? Come on, I’ll show you mine and then you show me yours. I know you took a pic.
Here’s the before and after
See, I did good.
And finally, the holiday in a glass – the thing that makes ricing 20 pounds of potatoes and still having your husband say it’s not enough worth it. The gas in my engine, the wind beneath my wings, the fuel to my…you know.
22 Nov 2012 2 Comments
Scenes from yesterday’s prep
This is the easiest cranberry sauce ever. Like. Ever.
Turns to this
Drying out the bread for stuffing. Other families just let it go stale naturally, but good bread doesn’t last long in my family. Mainly because of me. Let’s be honest.
21 Nov 2012 9 Comments
And all through the house, not a creature was stirring, except for the nutty woman making cranberry sauce at 5am.
It’s pre-gobble time. Run to the store time, prep your turkey time, run to store again time. I love this holiday. It’s my all-time fav. We never celebrated it when I was growing up, which is ironic because a holiday about food would have fit right in. My husband’s family taught me to love Thanksgiving. The gathering, the laughing, the shouting, the forcing-the-vegetarian-to-mix-sausage-stuffing-by-hand-ing. I digress.
Through the years I’ve found my own way of doing the holiday – I’ve tried garlic mashed potatoes and truffle mashed potatoes and pecan glazed sweet potatoes and apple cranberry stuffing and every other recipe that Martha Stewart pimped out. You know what I learned? All I need is pounds and pounds of butter. And maybe some heavy cream. Other than that – I leave everything alone. My mashed potatoes just have potatoes in them. I save the pecans for the pie, and the craziest thing I add to my stuffing is some green onions.
I’m not sure if I’ll be able to blog throughout the cooking, but I’ll try. Here’s almost everything – minus the 28 pound fresh bird that’s waiting for me at the market.
If I knew how to do one of those cool panoramic shots, I would. But I don’t, so I won’t.
Yes, we’re a Poppycock family. There’s no hiding it now.
I thought I’d highlight two of my favorite “cheats”.
Why cut celery and onions when you can use that time for more productive things, like watching Top Chef Seattle (do you love it like I love it?).
The best $2.99 cents you have ever spent at Trader Joe’s.
Here’s the other thing I don’t bother making from scratch … sorry about the blurriness but it’s early you know. Get off my back.
I do make a quick honey and maple syrup to drizzle on top. See, it’s kinda like homemade.
Ok, gotta get back to my day. Hope you are all knee deep in turkey day prep too! No? Damn.
24 Oct 2012 6 Comments
There are things that have fallen by the way side during this crazy busy time.
Covering up my grays. Dusting the house. Planning for retirement. All put to the side.
Wondering why I haven’t done a cooking/baking post? No? Nevermind.
I love that I can be honest here and you don’t judge (or at least I don’t hear you judge or see you roll your eyes). I really love that my mother doesn’t know I blog – actually she doesn’t know what a blog is but whatever – I’ll take it.
Here’s what my family will eat tonight for dinner:
Thank you McCaffrey’s for thinking about making angel hair pasta with fresh tomatoes and basil, and for making Tilapia covered in breadcrumbs so I can call it “fish stick fish” for my son.
I’ll cook again soon. In 2013 at the latest.
06 Aug 2012 9 Comments
It’s been that kind of day. Took a day off from work to drive my daughter into the city – she’s spending a week with her aunt on the beach – lucky ducky. We were supposed to get there nice and early, have a breakfast with her grandparents that live in the city (please note, as stated before, the phrase “the city” always means NYC. Everything else is…not “the city”), get her on her way, take my son to a/the museum, have quality bonding time, etc.
Took a day off from work but ended up working just enough to piss off the people I work with AND my family.
Hit traffic. Missed breakfast – had to grab her something from Starbucks and she was only able to see her grandparents for a whole 5 seconds.
On the way to the museum my son said,”I really just want to go home.” Awesome.
On the car ride home he asked for fritters, like the kind my mother makes. What? This is a boy who only asks for one food – spaghetti with butter. That’s it. Once I made it with olive oil and he revolted. I was so happy. This would turn my day around. Fritters? Coming right up! Yes, it’s true, I’ve never fried anything at home before. But so what! I can do it! I will try!
Here’s the batter – I put stuff I think I kind of remember my mother putting in there – sort of. I don’t have the heart to do a recipe list. Besides – it was a huge failure, did I mention that?
In the hot oil it looked ok….
and then there was this.
I tried making them smaller, turning down the oil, making a different shape, saying a prayer – I did it all. All I got was a house that smells like burnt oil and absolutely, positively no fritters.
Sorry I didn’t take pictures of us being late, not having breakfast and everyone being angry with me. Maybe tomorrow.