French toast, with sourdough bread from the Farmers’ Market.

It’s sure quiet in my house this morning.

For the first time in more than a week, I have no children here. Well, I do, but they’re of the grown variety, and thus are sleeping soundly. All the campers from Camp KayKay have gone home, or in any event to other grandparents’ homes. There are no toys in my living room floor.

It’s kinda lonesome.

But I have a lot to do today — two work projects which didn’t get done last week, because I was chasing tiny tornadoes hither and yon, plus figs that need to be washed, jam made from them, and canned, purple hulled peas (a half-bushel of them) that need to be shelled and stashed in the freezer. The half-bushel of peaches can wait until a little later in the week, which is also filled with lots of things I  need to do, which I hope will involve significant cooking.

Because there sure wasn’t any last week.

The above photo is one of the three times my stove was turned on last week. The other two were to boil eggs for AGC3, and to make a grilled cheese sandwich for AGC1. I did make potato skins one night after everyone had gone to bed and it occured to me I’d forgotten to eat. And while there was plenty of fast/junk food, there were also two good meals out, both Mexican in nature, at Colorado Grill in Hot Springs and at the old faithful Ark-Mex standard, Pancho’s, in West Memphis.

Read the rest of this entry »

bkfst pizza 0715

What was left of the breakfast pizza after four women and two kids filled up.

Got a throng in the house for breakfast? Fed people breakfast strata until you’re sick of breakfast strata? Tired of cycling batter through the waffle iron?

I give you the breakfast pizza.

This thing is just about guaranteed to please picky eaters, as long as they like sausage, eggs and cheese. (Who doesn’t? Few people I know.)

Read the rest of this entry »

Food shopping online

July 10, 2017

Spicing up my life, I am. Peppers R Us.

I am continually amazed at what the Interwebs can bring me in the form of good eats.

There is not only what I can order online and get delivered to my door from the local Chinese takeout joint, without ever talking to a live person until the guy shows up at my door. There are the clicklists I can call up and for a mere five bucks, get my grocery shopping list picked off the shelves, bagged up, and have it waiting for me when I pull up at Kroger (and while that’s not as big a deal as it was when I was working at a not-at-home office, with kids that had to be strapped in and unstrapped and corralled in a basket, it’s still quite attractive from time to time). And there are the plethora of specialty/gourmet food websites out there, up to and including the incomparable DiBruno Brothers salumeria on Ninth Street in Philadelphia, wherein resides the best damn sausages and cheese I ever put in my mouth. God help me, I love them.

Read the rest of this entry »

Watermelon puree — ice cream on the hoof!

…wherein we try our hand at freezing watermelon. Fairly successfully.

I bought a watermelon over Fourth of July weekend, and it’s been sitting in my kitchen floor ever since. I got tired of walking around it. And AGC2 got up this morning and demanded watermelon for breakfast, so I decided to cut it.

It was a sizeable watermelon. Once I cut it, there existed the question of what to do with the nine-tenths of it he and I did NOT eat for breakfast.

In an unrelated train of food-related thought, I had been wanting to try my little Cuisinart ice cream maker ever since I got the new freezer, which gives me room to keep the ice cream freezer bowl, well, frozen.

Those two trains of thought collided head-on earlier this week.

I could, I said to myself, puree however much of that watermelon we didn’t want to eat, and I could see how it worked frozen. And self said, “Yeah, we ought to be able to do that.” And the watermelon continued to sit in the kitchen floor. Until AGC2 spurred me to cut it this morning.

Read the rest of this entry »

Ahhh, but we took some with us as we fell!

The cucumbers…the cucumbers are at the gate. The timbers are splintering. Defenders are falling rapidly. I do not know how long we can withstand. We have picked, we have pickled, we have made salads, we have made cucumber dip. We have wielded knives and graters and boiling brines. We have lined and stacked their corpses up on shelves in the pantry, against the long winter to come.

And still they come. There is no end to their ranks. When one falls, two take his place — two, three, a dozen! We cannot hold. We CANNOT HOLD! 

With apologies to whatever writer of adventure fiction I was channeling. But These Damn Cucumbers, y’all!

Saturday, I made seven pints of horseradish sweets, and got rid of the backlog of cucumbers that had been occupying my countertop. I was congratulating myself.

Pfffth. Until Sunday morning. When I went to take the dog out, strolled out back to enjoy the cool of the morning and check on the garden and …….AAAAIIIIIEEEEEE! THEY’RE BACK!

Read the rest of this entry »

Busy holiday Saturday

July 1, 2017

The quintessential summer lunch: The BTPC.

Woof. I’m tired.

By 10 a.m., I’d been to the farmers’ market twice, two grocery stores, Sam’s, and run some other errands. Then I came home and got busy.

I put everything away (exhausting in and of itself), put three racks of  baby back ribs in the water bath to sous vide, and made 15 pounds of sauerkraut. Well, it’s not sauer yet, but it’s on its merry way toward fermentation, basking in its brine in its bucket in the dining room. Come mid-August, we’ll have us some sauerkraut.

Read the rest of this entry »

Happy Independence Day, y’all!

Whew. Long holiday weekend began about a cocktail and a half ago. And none too soon. I am not suffering fools gladly today.

This is an odds and ends posts, designed to catch up on a few things and ease us into the holiday weekend, which I am welcoming with Moscow Mules and salsa with chips and grated cheese. Don’t judge. It was that or Asian takeout, and I didn’t want to get up and get out to go get the Asian.

Holiday weekend will begin tomorrow, when I bestir myself from bed and set out for the Farmers Market and other assorted errand-running, and come home to do some serious cooking and housecleaning.  On my “get it” list at the market: sweet corn, peaches, more canteloupe, whatever else looks good. Cabbage, if the market still has any, and I’ll make some kraut, being I never got around to the last kraut I was going to make, and chunked the elderly cabbages yesterday. Thank God I at least have a compost bin.

Read the rest of this entry »