Friday, July 29, 2011

A few more things about me…

Here are 10 more random things you may not know about me.

1. I do not like my coffee “warmed up” until the cup is almost empty. I don’t mind if it cools.

2. I do not like to touch paper grocery bags, I don’t like the texture. I hated covering the kids’ schoolbooks and was glad when they were big enough to do it themselves.

3. I learned to read long before first grade, which bugged the crap out of my first grade teacher. I was the original “Baby Can Read”.

4. I played the string bass when I was in middle school and high school.

5. I cannot whistle a tune, but can whistle loudly with my fingers in my mouth.

6. I did not use my whistling technique to call for my kids. I just hollered their names. They could hear me from two blocks over. Of course, that was back when it was safe to let your kids run the neighborhood.

7. I love to check the mail. Not email, although that is fun, too. I love going out to the mailbox to see what the mailman brought.

8. Sunrises are my favorite part of the day.

9. I have one purse. I hate when it is time to shop for a new one.

10. I love catchy songs on TV commercials. I look them up and put them on my iPod.

Here is my current favorite:

Now tell me something about you!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Salad days are not just for the young…

It’s hot. With the temperature hovering around 9,000 degrees, it’s just too hot to cook in the kitchen. Lucky for me, my dad shared a great recipe with me. As you know, I do not claim any of these recipes as my own. I only share them because they are good and easy to make.

Today’s dish is a fresh corn salad. Since it’s going to be a record setting hot day, we’re just going to roast that corn outside on the sidewalk. However, if you don’t live in DC and are having just normal(ish) hot weather, you can use your grill.

Let’s get some ingredients together:

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6 ears corn, shucked, roasted
fresh grape tomatoes, halved
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded, chopped
2 green onions, chopped
1 green pepper, seeded, chopped
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded, chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
4 TB white balsamic vinegar
3 TB extra virgin olive oil
white truffle oil
basil for garnish

 

If you’re like me, you will go right on out to your farm to pick the cucumbers and tomatoes. I didn’t grow corn this year, but I think the squirrels did in my flower garden.  Since I didn’t grow corn, I had to get some fresh from the store. I used white and yellow corn, because it’s looks pretty. I love fresh corn. You may remember my roasted corn recipe, but this time we’re only going to season with salt and pepper.

For those of you just joining us, here is how we roast the corn. First, slather some butter on each ear, then sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roll tightly in foil. Roast on the medium hot grill for about 20 minutes.

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Unwrap the corn and let it cool. While it’s cooling, we’ll make the rest of the salad. Lots of chopping and seeding going on now.

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I have found this to be the easiest way to chop herbs.
Put a bunch in a measuring cup and snip, snip, snip.

Don’t forget to wear gloves when seeding and chopping the jalapeño.

 

 

Once the corn is cool, with a sharp knife, cut the kernels from the cob. It’s not hard to do. Just watch your fingers.

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Toss all of this into a large bowl. Add the white balsamic vinegar (if you don’t have or can’t find white balsamic vinegar, white wine vinegar or rice wine vinegar will work), the olive oil and just a few drops of truffle oil.

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Toss to coat all the yummy goodness.
Season with a little salt and pepper.

Then cover and let marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours.

  Bring to room temperature before serving.

 

 

This is good with just about any meat. I served it with pulled pork BBQ sandwiches and it was better than coleslaw!

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What do you make when it’s too hot to cook?

Friday, July 22, 2011

If you saw a heat wave, would you wave back?

You know, I am used to the heat. I am a warm weather, south of the Mason-Dixon line, no-snow loving person. But this? This is killing me.

Hothothothot
Photo stolen from courtesy of www.nbcwashington.com

Yesterday the humidity was 72%. Whatever that means, besides the fact that when you walk outside your skin just starts to drip off.

I read the other day that Seattle has had 78 minutes of temperatures over 80°.
Pack up the dogs! We’re moving to Seattle!!

Wait.

They have snow there. And rain. Lots of rain.
Never mind.

On Monday? You’ll find me inside the Slurpee machine at the 7-11.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery…

For his birthday, what do you get for a man who has already owned a pony, a boat, several new bikes, a golf course GPS and now a popcorn machine?

 

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A mini-me!!

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I think he likes it. Maybe even better than the popcorn machine.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Families are like fudge - mostly sweet with a few nuts…

The Girl and her beau came to visit for four days. They brought my grandbaby, too, and don’t think for a minute that I didn’t talk to him so she would know what my voice sounds like. Did you see what I did there? That’s so the baby will know it doesn’t matter if he is a girl or she is a boy. Grandma will love you always!

We had such a great time. I’m sure you’re dying to know all the things we did.

Well, we did a little of this…

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a LOT of this…

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With the Girl around, there is always some silliness…

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They never missed an opportunity to pose for us…

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But the best pose of all?

Was this one…

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How many parents get to see their daughter become engaged?!
The cougars at the next table sure enjoyed it, too!

Congratulations to my Girl and MJ!

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Thank you for letting us be a part of your special moment.

Then off they went, to live happily ever after. I miss them already.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ice cream is exquisite. What a pity it isn’t illegal…

With the Girl coming for a visit, along with her beau, I wanted to make sure I had things they like in the fridge. Because not everyone can live on limes and tonic water. Anyway, she mentioned that they like ice cream, so I did what any good mom would do, I made the Girl some ice cream. Actually it’s banana sherbet, but it is all kinds of cold, yummy, goodness.

If you have one of the little counter top ice cream makers, this is the perfect quart sized recipe. If you don’t have one of the little counter top ice cream makers, you’ll just have to read this and be a little envious. Or you may want to go get one. It’s that good.

Here are the things you will need:

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  An ice cream maker
  1 cup water
  2/3 cup sugar
  1/3 cup low-fat evaporated milk
  1/3 cup orange juice
  2 TB lemon juice
  1 medium banana

   Oh! You’ll need a blender, too.

 

 

 

 

Put the water and the sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a boil to melt the sugar. Then set to the side to cool.

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Once the syrup is cool, get your church key can opener and open the can of milk. But wait, you don’t have a church key can opener any more and haven’t seen one in about 30 years and you wonder if they even still make them? And if they don’t make them anymore why don’t they just put pull tabs on the top of the milk cans? Fine. Just use your regular not-made-to-make-pouring-spouts-on-a-can can opener to open the milk. Add the milk, OJ, lemon juice, and banana to the blender.

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Use one medium sized, ripe, banana, chopped into pieces. I had two small bananas, so used one and a half. If you need to do this, just give the unused half of the banana to the dogs.

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If one dog just simply refuses to lower her standards to eat a banana, food meant for monkeys, give it to the other dog. She’ll eat anything.

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After you’re done messing with the dogs, wash your hands and get back to work. Blend everything up until it’s smooth, then add the syrup and blend well.

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Pour mixture into ice cream maker and process about 25 to 30 minutes. Once the sherbet is done, place in a freezer container and freeze for at least 4 hours before serving. If you decide to taste the sherbet after 4 hours, and then again at the 6 hour mark and then again the next morning and find that you’ve eaten it all before the Girl gets here, you’re going to have to start over.

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Not that I would have any personal experience about that.