Tonight’s dessert — apple cranberry walnut crisp.

Smells all Cajun up in here.

Child B and her fam are coming tonight for a small pre-Thanksgiving family get-together, and since I didn’t figure she wanted turkey and dressing two days in one week, I asked her if she wanted red  beans and rice.

“YES!” was her reply.

You know how you have that one dish that you can call a kid, tell them the name of the dish, a date and a time, and they’re there? That’s hers. For Child A, it’s zucchini fritters. Child C is pretty flexible. SIL 1 goes for mac and cheese, while for SIL 2, it’s either country fried steak or pot roast.

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Stew for a throng

November 14, 2018

Not vegetable soup, though it looks like it.

Had to feed a group of 20 or so the other night before a meeting at church. Didn’t have to be anything complex, so I figured soup and sandwich should do ’em.

And besides, I had leftover pulled pork barbecue, so I could make Brunswick Stew, which I dearly love but for some reason, don’t make that much any more. Good enough. We’d have Brunswick Stew.

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But this is a pot roast worth waiting for.

Sorry, y’all. I haven’t been cooking a whole lot, and while I’ve been writing, it’s been the kind I get paid for, not the kind I do because it’s fun.

Yesterday morning, I was playing hooky from church, just because it got to be 10:15 before I noticed, and at that point, it was too late. Never mind the fact I got up at 7, and by 8 had my Sunday roast in the oven, and then made a dozen banana nut muffins which did the double duty of getting rid of the about-to-go-south bananas and providing the Sunday morning muffins for Sunday school.

To which I did not go. So I ate two of said muffins, with the added bonus of copious quantities of butter, which I normally don’t get on the Sunday muffins unless I bring some home and toast them Monday. And the roast just braised away, never mind only Child A and I were there to eat it, because it was in the 40s today and by George, I wanted a pot roast.

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Y’all know it’s a real slippery slope. If you start thinking about cooking Thanksgiving dinner, Christmas can’t be far behind.

Help me, Jesus. I ain’t ready for this.

There are two separate and distinct cooking issues to be dealt with for Christmas. One is the Christmas treat baskets, a tradition my peeps have gotten spoiled to, and one I’m determined to continue. I’ll put some canned stuff in these, and I’m about of a mind I may try my hand at canning chicken liver pate and maybe pork rillettes, as well. I have a gracious plenty of pickles and jams and jellies, and I can fill in the gaps with cookies and candies. I will be adding these molasses spice cookies (because they are GOOD, y’all), and maybe coconut macaroons and fudgey oatmeal cookies and pralines and fudge to the mix. And spiced pecans, because those are always a hit, and maybe Chex mix, because that’s always a hit, too.

OK. Baskets, more or less planned. Then there’s Christmas dinner.

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October 25, 2018

Salsa, happily fermenting away.

Well, it wouldn’t be me in the kitchen if I didn’t take out occasionally on a tangent and try something I’ve never made before.

We’re still getting good tomatoes at the Farmer’s Market, which means I am still buying tomatoes. I am, in fact, buying too many tomatoes. Which meant the other day I had to do something with them.

So, I made salsa. Now, I have never made salsa. There are a bajillion recipes out there, but did I go with one of those? I did not. I did what I generally do, and ad-libbed. 

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An old, warm favorite

October 23, 2018

I guess I first made carbonnades a la flamande close on to 10 years ago.  It was one of the first strike-out-into-new-territory dishes I tried when I began to get more adventurous in cooking, and it’s been a favorite ever since.

Warmth in a bowl.

I remember WHY I tried it. I read the Arkansas Times, religiously, because I am a screaming liberal and that’s the screaming liberal newspaper in a state that ain’t got but one, at least that I know of. And Max Brantley, then the editor of same, and his wife were on a trip to Europe, and he was periodically posting on the Times’ blog. He mentioned one day about carbonnades a la flamande, which sent me to Google (I do dearly love Google) to look it up.

“Well,” I said to myself after reading a couple of versions of the recipe. “This seems simple enough. I b’lieve I could do this.” And Self replied, “Well, sure ya could!” So we undertook it. I believe I blogged it, sometime in early 2009. I just remember it was spitting snow, colder than five kinds of hell, and that was the warmest, most wonderful thing I’d ever eaten.

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Harvest thoughts

October 21, 2018

It’s a bit more than six weeks away, but  little nip in the air turns my thoughts to Thanksgiving.

Well, that, and the fact the Thanksgiving issue of Bon Appetit arrived yesterday. I may not always read Bon Appetit the day it gets here, but the Thanksgiving issue, I did. And I commenced to think.

Self and I do that, y’know. And we come up with some fine ideas from time to time.

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