Archive for the 'recipe' Category


blip: try new foods

   Yes.  I’m a mom.  And among our many mantras such as “settle down”, “wear clean underwear”, and “say thank you to the nice man” we have a wealth of commands and proverbs that pertain to the eating of foods.  “Clean your plate”.  “Children are starving in Africa”.  “Eat your vegetables”.  “Take at least one bite”.  Amazingly, this wisdom often falls upon deaf and stubborn ears. They will not heed the mom speak.  They mentally block it out. And we keep babbling on until our magnificent edicts degrade to no more than nonsensical naggery.

I don’t want that to happen with this post.  Please don’t delete my meaning even though you’ve mastered the art of not listening to mothers raving about eating.  Can you read these words without the ghost of some overly anxious family matron materializing on your shoulder with finger wagging and eye brows scrunching pushing an extra helping of sweet potatoes in your face?  I know you can try.  Hear me now: You need to try new foods.

It’s so easy to get in a food rut.  We mindlessly stuff our gobs with whatever is convenient. We lose the joy of eating.  Our palettes dull, meals become just one more motion to go through over the course of a mechanical and uninteresting existence.  We think we know what we like.  What we like makes us who we are.  But how can we fully refine the notion of who we are if we stop trying new things and expanding our repertoire of experiences and enjoyances. (oooo I just birthed a new word.)

Trying new foods is one of the easiest ways to add that spirit of adventure back into a life that has gone bland.  We have to eat.  We don’t have to be boring with our food.  Spice up your life by mixing it up. Activate your taste buds. surprise your mouth. Flavors on the tongue inspire a desire to venture off and be more daring in other areas as well.  All of a sudden you went from the pits of blaaaaaaaaaaaa to becoming once again a fascinating person.  This is your life, make it interesting.

Your mother will be so proud of that.  And so will I.  And I’m taking my own advice, I’ll have you know. I’m not just cyber blabbering bossy sentiments in your general direction.  See that image of what appears to be electric pink celery? Yeah, that’s rhubarb.  A new food for me.  An ingredient I don’t really understand and want to enjoy on my own terms.  I plan to make some freezer jam with it to put on my fresh bread.  And I’m gonna use it on BBQ pulled pork.  Fascinating.  Here are the links. and

Get off your food duff and eat something interesting today.


tip: pumpkin flavor anything

Just noticed today that I have accumulated a whopping 200 pumpkin inspired recipes on my Pinterest board.  That’s heavy duty.  How many of them have I actually prepared?  Probably twenty, tops.  Pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin bread, pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin chili, pumpkin pasta, pumpkin BBQ to name a few.  And they were all delicious. Even now as I type, the ingredients for pumpkin snicker doodles are lined up on the counter, next on the morning’s to-do list.  I’m affectionately calling them “Punker-Doodles”.  Good times with squash.  *chuckle*

I’m shamelessly promoting that prize pumpkin recipe hoard on the blog today.  Go and take a looky loo.  Love pumpkin? This link is the song of your people.

As yet unimpressed with the fall pumpkin food fad?  Why? Too mainstream? Too Charlie Brown? Too grossed out by the mushy sight and earthy aroma of canned pumpkin to join the party?  I bet you 100$ that even if you think you hate pumpkin with a white hot wrath, there is a recipe on this board you would actually like.  Don’t make me go airplane spoon on you.  Try the pumpkin, the pretty pretty pumpkin!

And while you’re scrolling through the various and sundry flavor combinations, might I remind you that these recipes are only suggestions.  Inspirations. Blueprints needing your own personal detailing. You could add pumpkin to anything.  I’m not saying it always comes out tasting awesome (ask me about my pumpkin, bacon, beer dip FAIL), but it’s fun to play and discover.  Jump on the pumpkin wagon with me people!  I’ll scoot over and make room 🙂


BLIP: Ode To An Ice Cream Sandwich

O, Ice cream sandwich, thou confoundeth me.  Thy chocolate wafer melteth on my fingers, thy creamy ice milk stingeth deep in my skull as I crammeth you into my face before you mucketh up my T-shirt.   Alas.

I love the taste of a good old-fashioned ice cream sandwich.  It’s like cookies and cream forged into a uniform brick of goodness all wrapped up in waxy paper that never seems to peel off with convenience or ease.  By the time you get to the good part on a hot summer day, the beloved ice cream sandwich usually becomes a ticking time bomb of mushiness, oozing down wrists, smudging chins, leaking onto clothing, leaving a trail of horrifying stickiness in its wake.  O, the mess!  O, the humanity!

Maybe I have some kind of disorder that makes me stress out about messy ice cream, whatever.  But if the pressure of eating ice cream sandwiches is also too much for you, may I present a calming and sanitary alternative: the ice cream sandwich cake.  You eat it with a fork.  Latex gloves optional. 🙂


BLIP: Savory Oatmeal Breaks It Down And Keeps It Real

Maybe I’m the last person on the food trend train to hear about savory oatmeal, but let me tell you, it has really messed with my head.  Oatmeal is near the top on my list of the ten nastiest foods ever.  Merely thinking about it triggers the gag reflex.  Being forced to eat it at various day care centers is a scarring memory from my childhood.  Is it a breakfast or an adhesive?  It smells bad.  It tastes worse.  The texture, O, the texture…..*gag*

Yet, they are calling it “sexy”.  They are comparing it to risotto.  They are eating it for lunch in hip restaurants, and I am missing out because of my unwillingness to let oatmeal out of the pigeon hole.  Maybe (just maybe) I need to have an open mind and give oatmeal a chance.  Maybe such an act would be so freeing that it would inspire me to rethink the other stereotypes I stubbornly hold to.  Maybe eating savory oatmeal will make me a better person.  Or, maybe it’ll make me barf.

Either way, you should challenge yourself to look at something for which you hold severe disdain in a new light and find a way to enjoy it.  Or at least try to.

Here’s to you, savory oatmeal, for freeing my mind.


TIP: Leftovers. Use The Whole Buffalo.

Who wants to read  a blog post about leftovers?  You should want to.  Because you should want to be a conscientious user of natural resources and that is exactly what proactive leftover planning makes you.  Think of all the wasted food out there and all the people going hungry in the world.  Yes, those starving children in India your mother threatened you with are not a myth and I am not above invoking them to make a point.  We in America live in a society of excess, overabundance, our cup runneth over and we never miss a meal.  I’m not trying to incite a guilt trip (but it would be NICE for you to think about and help out those less fortunate than yourself, it would make me and your mother very proud) more than I’m trying to get you to understand how to utilize your blessings to the fullest.  Like the natives who lived here before us, we should aspire to become masters of  every usable inch of our boon with little to no waste and loss.  Being smart in the kitchen with your leftovers nods to the noble appreciation and responsible stewardry of the American Indians.  Here are a few tips on why and how to employ your leftovers to the fullest.

*Leftovers save you money.  $$$.  Do I have your attention?  You want me to show you the money?  Then look at me, cuz I’m showing you the leftovers.  Food costs are sky-high these days.  I bet if we could put a magic calculator in your garbage can that adds up all the money you are throwing out with food that could have been useful, you’d have a heart attack at the findings.  A study conducted in 1995 estimated that 96.4 billion pounds of edible food was wasted in America each year.  I’m not even going to attempt to convert that into dollars, suffice to say it’s lots’ o cash.

*Use leftovers quickly.  In order to save you moolah, the leftovers you put in the fridge need to be used in about 2 days.  3 tops.  This is because they will still be fresh and delicious and will not have morphed into ooey gooey mystery meat food zombie science project fodder that leftovers often get accused of being.  You can accomplish this by planning meals ahead or by considering all your options using leftovers as inspiration first if you are one of those open-the-refrigerator door-and-stare-kind of food planners.

*Store them correctly.  Make sure your food is in containers or Zip-lock bags that are air tight and preferably clear so you can see what is inside.  Freshness means you will actually want to eat it again, so make a solid effort here.  Use the refrigerator for short-term storage, the freezer for longer term.

*Timing is everything.  Try not to cook a huge meal too closely following a large intake of leftovers.  Getting backed up on saving stuff will only create that deplorable chore of cleaning out the fridge of things that have gone limp, fuzzy, and green.  If you find yourself with more leftovers than you can use, give them to a neighbor or invite more mouths to the table.

*Be creative.  Leftover meats can be served in omelets, hashes, and scrambles for breakfast, they can appear in soups, sandwiches, stir fries, pizzas, salads, and the like for lunch.  Leftover pasta, rice, veggies and fruits are equally practical to save.  Leftovers meals re-nuked can save you a trip to the drive-thru on a busy evening.  Some foods with tomato based sauces (spaghetti, lasagna, chili) actually taste better on the second night.

The following links have recipes and ideas for leftovers that look more delectable than how the food might have been served the first time around:


BLIP: Awesome Moments In Sandwich History

Once in a long while I will make a sandwich that parts the heavens, a sandwich enshrined in golden mist, a sandwich awesome enough to be serenaded by angels.  Or at the very least, a sandwich that jolts me out of my lunch rut and makes me want to both embrace and affectionately smack the people around me with a crusty baguette.  This. Is. That. Sandwich.

Turkey, Brie, and Orange Marmalade with Arugula on French Bread

Just gather up your ingredients, no self-respecting sandwich arteest actually measures anything.  Slice up and divide in half pieces of a baguette or some other crusty bakery roll of your choosing (ciabatta would be divine.)  Spread bread liberally with orange marmalade. Brie usually comes in a wheel, slice it fairly thin and layer it on, rind and all.  Pile up the turkey of your choice atop the brie.  Smoked turkey adds another level of complexity to enchant your palate.  Sprinkle with the peppery green stuff.  That would be arugula.  And there you have it.  The immaculate luncheon.  *ahhhhhhhh*


BLIP: Gauchos Are Cowboys Who Wear Ninja Knickers.

Sadly, Gauchos have failed to create a niche market for themselves in the realm of our collective American adventure story fascination the same way that pirates, ninjas, space travelers, knights, and cowboys from the wild west have.  I think it’s because people can’t look past the pants.  From the waist up, a gaucho is pure grit and grizzle.  But what is he wearing on the bottom half?

Well anyway, a Gaucho is basically a South American cowboy.  You may have seen men dressed up like this in Brazilian steak houses holding enormous skewers of fire roasted meat, and unfortunately, that is what a gaucho has now come to be associated with.  Not toughness.  Not romance and the spirit of adventure.  But enormous skewers of fire roasted meat.

Here’s to the gaucho, that dying enigma in confused looking culottes.  Honor his memory by making something delicious and meaty.

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