Thursday, December 31, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Saturday, December 12, 2009
A few months ago, Melissa left a comment wanting to get some information on what baby gear we regularly used and what sat around collecting dust. Sorry it took so long to get this written! But here is my take on it.
Disclaimer: What I'm about to share is intended only as helpful advice to new mothers based on my experience. I encourage any expecting mom to keep their baby purchases to a minimal level (especially in terms of clothing) to avoid wasting money. I also would buy as much of the baby gear secondhand as possible and return gifts that you do not think will be used for something more practical. And remember, going to the store is still possible after the baby is born!
Items that went to waste:Multiple types of bottles & pacifiers---Maybe I would feel differently about this if I fed North formula from the get-go, but I only had 2 different bottles for him at birth. Dr. Brown's and some Playtex drop-in that was a free gift. We have only ever used 2 Dr. Brown's bottles that we wash after each use. As for pacifiers, he got a Soothies at the hospital and later on, I switched him to the MAM pacifier. There is no need to prepare for the what-ifs. But if you must, keep everything in the packaging and save the receipts so you can return it down the road if necessary.
Hooded towels---Sure they are adorable, but after a few months, they're just not big enough to use anymore. Buy 1 for cute infant pictures and save your money.
Dreft---I do love the smell of this stuff. But there are so many brands of truly baby friendly detergents out there that are better for baby's skin than Dreft, not to mention much cheaper.
Receiving blankets & burp clothes---We could have easily gotten by with a 6 pack each of receiving blankets and burp clothes. Unless you never plan on doing laundry again, there is no reason to have much more than that. We used the blankets we stole from the hospital mainly because the receiving blankets from the store always seem too small for the task (swaddling, shading baby in carseat, etc).
Clothes---The most stressful thing to me is trying to get all the clothes on the baby before he outgrows them and they go to waste. We have found that we seem to rotate about 6-8 outfits on him unless we make a concerted effort to put other clothes on him. I feel very wasteful when I think about all the items he only wore once.
Baby wash and lotion---You really only need one of each to start out with and this stuff lasts forever. Seriously, North will be in his 40s before he uses up the stock pile of baby wash that was gifted to him.
Bumbo---Unless someone gives you one, I wouldn't buy one. I mean, I like having ours, but it's an expensive piece of foam. Maybe buy it used if you just have to have it.
Although it was not part of the question, here are some items that many moms now wished they would have registered for:
Convertible car seat
6+ months clothing (if you live in predictable climate)
Monday, December 7, 2009
Everyone has been warning me of how quickly the time passes when you watch your child grow; but here I am astounded that you're eight months old already. In the past month, you've started crawling at the speed of light, pulling up on everything, falling down continuously and exploring anything you can get your little paws on.
I often amuse myself by pretending you are a safety inspector pointing out all the possible dangers in our home. "OK ma'am, I think I found your problem. See this cord here, an unsuspecting baby could bite into this, like so. Or the baby could pull on the cord like I'm doing now and BOOM the TV falls on him. Or maybe the baby accidentally gets the cord around his neck. See how easy that was for me to do? Ma'am, you really need to take care of some dangers in the house before someone gets hurt.....oops, uh Ma'am, it appears I have created a turdle in my diaper, could you possibly remove that for me?"
Unfortunately, with all this new mobility, comes an onslaught of scrapes and bruises. Somehow, it's always your face that takes the brunt of the punishment. Maybe because you have such ample padding everywhere else? But you take the fall like a stoic little soldier and only cry when it is a particularly hard landing. Your father and I try not to react when you crash land, having learned quickly that you look to us for a reaction as if to say, "should I cry now?"
You've become a much better eater lately and you've even started gobbling up a few table foods like cheese, peas and pancakes. Every Sunday morning your dad makes blueberry pancakes and now you are a part of our favorite family tradition too! Watching you chow down on tiny fistfuls of pancake this past Sunday made my heart soar thinking about all the future pajama-clad mornings that lie ahead. We have at least eighteen years worth of pancakes to eat with you and I plan on savoring each and every delicious bite.
Monday, November 23, 2009
My birthday has been just another day to me for quite a few years now. I don't say that in a sad way. Ninety five percent of the time, the weather outside is either rain or snow, which helps to explain the pensive way the day gets spent. I tend to just go about my business as usual and often spend it quietly reflecting on the last year. Kind of like my own private VH1 year end wrap up if you will. This year, I cannot wait to get home and enjoy the rainy day cuddling with a certain pants peeing little boy while we wait for daddy to return. He defines the last year of my life perfectly.
This morning as I got ready for work, I could hear North stirring in his crib. His latest habit upon waking is to pull himself up by the wooden bars and chatter away until you come in to rescue him from his crib prison. As I was quickly pulling my hair into a ponytail, I could hear his chatter over the monitor and I swear I heard a "Awuwuuhappybirthdaymamaawuwua" thrown in there. That kid melts me into a puddle. Thanks baby for showing me the joy I brought with me when I was born into the world many moons ago.
Monday, November 16, 2009
I had to share that moment. But that's not why I started writing this post. I wanted to share a yummy recipe for focaccia bread to help transition into you into cooler temperature foods. I've already made a few batches of soup and this bread fits so perfectly with it. I tried three different recipes, each of which turned out tasting like pretzel, cracker and finally, bread. Funny thing is that we enjoyed all of them with our soup, even the batch that was more like hardtack. But what follows is the recipe for the bread version. Enjoy!
1 (1/4 ounce) packet active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (105-115 degrees)
1 tsp. white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup wheat flour (or you can just use all white flour)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried basil
dash crushed red pepper
1 dash black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
Mix the yeast, sugar and water in a small bowl. Allow to sit for 10 minutes until bubbles begin to form. In large mixer bowl, stir together flour, salt, garlic powder, thyme, basil, crushed red pepper and black pepper. Add the yeast mixture and vegetable oil to the dry ingredients and combine on low speed. When dough has pulled away from the sides and is sticky to the touch, plop it onto a floured surface and knead only until smooth and elastic. Oil a glass mixing bowl, put the dough in the bowl and coat the dough with the oil by turning it in the bowl. Cover with a damp cloth and allow it to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes. Preheat over to 425 degrees. Punch down the dough in the bowl and dump it onto a greased standard baking sheet. Pat dough until it covers the entire baking sheet. Brush the top with olive oil and sprinkle with parmesan and mozzarella cheese. Bake for 10-13 minutes until the cheese browns.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
But here in the Killer household I like to kick things up a notch; not to mention plagiarize the catchphrases of the Food Network chef that is annoying me the most that day. I also like to make things difficult and to get rid of things that have been taking up space in my pantry. Point is, if you are feeling saucy and throwing these cookies together, you might want to try adding in any of the following: chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, walnuts, pecans, cranberries, raisins, a touch of orange zest or cream cheese frosting on top.
Here's the recipe I used:
1 box spice cake mix
1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1/2 bag butterscotch chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Now this is the hard part, open the spice cake mix and dump it into your mixer bowl. Are you still with me? Now open the can of pumpkin and plop it on top of the cake mix. In that order! Geez, do you want worlds to collide if you happened to put the pumpkin in first? Now turn your mixer on slowly! Let the magic combine and then add in the chips. BAM! Cookie dough!
Monday, October 26, 2009
So I had North pick a new winner---Melissa! Oh, I also loved your idea about writing a post about non-essential baby items and it looks like you'll need this info sooner rather than later. I hope to get that on the blog soon for you. Congratulations! (I mean this more on that beautiful belly than for this silly little contest!)
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Speaking of contests, this is my 99 post! Things have been pretty busy in the Killer household so it took a little longer to get here than anticipated. Sorry about that. But my next post will announce the winner of the weird little thank you contest I'm running. There may even be video of North picking and attempting the eat the winner's name. Then I'll ask the winner to send me their address because I'm not a creepy internet person that knows how to track a computer's IP Address and find out where people live from a comment left on my blog. Details on all this to follow. Wow, I have goosebumps already.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
For those of you not brought up with a pastime as sophisticated as corning, allow me to explain. Corning is not throwing a full ear of corn at a house; that would be silly, wasteful and way too easy for the victim to clean up. Rather, the corn is in dried loose form. The 'corner' scoops a handful of the stuff and whips it as hard as he/she can at the 'cornees' house. An explosion of successful hits is then heard as the corner runs like hell on to the next house while the cornee turns on their porch light realizing they've just been corned. But alas, cornee, it is too late.
This corning phenomenon begs the question: who was supplying all of this dried loose corn to so many children? Is there a black market for corn in Western Pennsylvania and some son of a farmer spent his free time shucking and cutting corn off the ears to supply all of his rogue friends ammunition for their nighttime hijinks? If so, I bet that kid is rich now because every kid in my hometown corned a house at one time or another I'm sure.
Laugh all you want about corning, I think we were ahead of our time. Considering all the different forms of vandalism we could have chosen, corning is certainly the most green choice. For example, we could have been toilet papering houses and trees. What a mean thing to do to a tree anyway. From the tree's perspective, that's like hanging their dead brothers and sisters all over them. The horror! And have you seen the price of toilet paper these days? Only the spoiled rich kids could afford to partake in such pranks in the current bathroom tissue market. Even poor kids deserve to wreak a little havoc!
I need to explore this topic further and find out if kids raised in different parts of the country threw different vegetables than we did. Perhaps it's a regional thing and kids in Idaho throw potatoes at houses. Or kids in the south throw cotton and cigarettes? Maybe those hippies out in California throw flower seeds and patchouli? Does it extend beyond our American borders?Could it be a worldwide phenomenon?
My poor kid may never know the joys of corning though. With ethanol production and rising corn demand, I'm afraid kids will not be able to afford the black market corn prices any longer. But I will dazzle him with the stories of my youth and a time when corn was so abundant and cheap, kids threw it at houses to be funny.
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
So here we are at month six of life with you and as usual, I'm blown away how quickly the time has passed. My constant wishing that I could lock you in time is becoming a little ad nauseam isn't it? I guess my fear is that I'll forget what you were like at each of these stages because as you grow you become a slightly different person than I thought you were last month. I suppose I might as well get used to it now though.
Maybe I'm spoiling you even though the baby books say that is nearly impossible this early in life. But I have a hard time putting you down sometimes. You're my little snuggle bug right now and I'm taking advantage of it while I still can. Maybe tomorrow instead of lifting your hand to touch my face or put your fingers up my nose as it were, you will slap my hugs away wanting to be put down so you can explore on your own. So I hug you tight each day and smother you with kisses while you'll still let me.
If later in life we discover that you are a good dancer, I'm just going to take credit for that now. You enjoy whirling me around the living room dance floor like a floating 24 inch tall Fred Astaire. You even dip me when you get into the groove. Maybe one day when you find yourself at a school dance nervous to step on your partner's feet, these early dance lessons will kick in and you'll whisk her away with your smooth moves. Hmm, maybe these dance lessons aren't such a good idea after all...
You spend your days chatting with your stuffed animals in your crib, chewing on various toys/my face/your appendages and rolling around on the floor. We're just at the point of needing to Northy-proof the house because you are getting so mobile. I will put you down on the floor, turn my back for an instant and the next thing I know, you are underneath the futon or have trapped yourself under your bouncy seat. Although you're not crawling yet, we are amazed at how independent you are becoming and what a little explorer you are.
You are already proving to be a helpful guy to have around the house. Yesterday, you were fussy, so I wore you as I vacuumed the house because you like to be close to us when you're upset. Actually, you were quite helpful and held onto the cord the entire time keeping it out of my way. I was shocked at how much you seemed to like vacuuming though when you started whimpering when I shut it off. I think you may have also developed my love of sweeping the back deck too. I often wear you as I sweep leaves too. It's so cute to watch you stick out your tiny hand and hold onto the broom with each swoosh. I wonder if in your mind it is you that is doing the sweeping? Do you think I work you too hard? Do we need to start talking allowance already?
This week I put away your summer baby clothes now that the cooler temperatures are upon us. The comfy sweaters and warm jeans are conspiring against me and pushing you to grow up faster than I can handle. Wearing them you look like a little boy. But like the summer temperatures, I'm not ready to let go of the past six months with my little baby just yet.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
I finally started using my Moby Wrap with North when I take him on walks because the Bjorn makes my lower back ache now that he has become a chubster. The Moby is essentially a 10 foot long piece of stretchy fabric. It is a pain in the butt to put on and if you're OCD like me, it's a huge pain to fold up after each use. I do like it though and it is really comfortable.
I'm sure I would like the Moby a lot more if I was the type of person that could just leave it in a messy heap. But alas, my mother did not bring me up that way. She ironed the bed sheets when I was growing up if that helps to explain my psychosis at all. Her linen closet could make a grown man weep I tell you. I'm sure it makes Dave weepy in a "this is not my beautiful wife" kind of way with how often I nag him to fold the towels like I do and have them facing in the correct direction. It is a non-stop party in our house.
I took this video last night during bath time. This took many filming takes because North is an exhibitionist. Every time I covered his winky woo with the washcloth of modesty, he grabbed it and whipped it around until it ended up in his mouth the way everything does. Since his winker is going through an inverted phase, I thought I'd better make sure he was properly covered or it may give him just cause to stop speaking to me later in life.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
You'd think after a year of doing this that I would have a better idea how to categorize this blog, but I don't. One day it might be all baby stories and the next it could be a recipe or some political rant that I have to get off my chest. I guess this blog is a grab bag or a box of chocolates if your mama was of the Forrest Gump school of thought. And every now and then I'll probably write something that tastes as crappy to you as whatever those disgusting pink centered chocolates taste to me. But I hope to occasionally provide you with a delicious chocolate covered peanut or two as well.
Thank you for taking the time to read my ramblings over the last year. I've enjoyed reading your feedback and learning from your experiences in the comments section. My goal for 2010 (is it just me or does that sound far off into the future, like we should be flying around with jetpacks four months from now?) is to have more dialogue going on in the comments section. I just wish blogger made it a bit easier to leave feedback.
I'd like to run a little contest as a gesture of thanks. So please leave a comment on this post and I will randomly pick a winner to receive a grab bag of goodies picked out by yours truly and the almost six-month old baby North. But don't let his involvement deter you. I probably won't have him help me too much. Otherwise, the winner will get rewarded with very strange prizes like a wet washcloth, a beer bottle or some other random item that he currently covets. Maybe I'll write the names of anyone that leaves a comment on a piece of paper and put them in a hat. Whichever one North picks and attempts to eat is the winner.
Anyway, I'll pick a winner once I've made it to my goal of 100 posts. But really guys, you're all winners in my book.
Edited to add: Please be sure to leave at least your name with your comment so I can identify you. This whole running a contest thing is trickier than I thought it would be! But I'm having so much fun collecting little things that make me happy to send the winner, I might run these contests more often. Please bear with me as I figure out the best way to do this.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
I want to hear Democrats and Republicans agree on this people! Like it or not, even our president has been caught on tape calling Mr. West a jackass.
Can we all nod our heads in agreement with the leader of the free world on this? Let us all reach across the aisles, hold hands (?) apparently and know that our side is the side of truth. Kanye West is indeed a jackass for interrupting that sweet country singer as she accepted her award.
Mr. West will go down in history as the great uniter from this day forward. It's like he somehow realized all America needed was a cause all of the people could really get behind you know? He has since succeeded in bringing the American people back together; so in unison, the populous could proclaim him to be a douche. Thank you Kanye West. You may have saved America.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
My issue has to do with a certain freecycler that I recently corresponded with. He listed some mason jars as available on my local board along with some other confusing emails to the general group grumbling about "no shows" from the last time he listed these jars, etc. Anyway, I politely inquired as to the status of said mason jars, explaining that multiple posts were wrongly timestamped in my Inbox etc.
I received the response, "THEY ARE TAKEN."
I ask you sir, was it not good enough to yell at me? Did you have to spit on my face with the bold formatting too? Why did you take the time to not only caps lock but also bold your text? Meanie.
My gut inclination was to hit reply again and type
" OK THANKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" in 24 font comic sans---an effort to make his eyes bleed from such e-motion. I wanted to underline it, italicize it, even shade it if necessary! Color it purple perhaps? But I bit my hands and clicked my "X" instead. Today sir, I AM the bigger person!
I believe you need some classes in Anger Formatting Management.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Friday, September 4, 2009
I'll leave you with pictures of what our following days will be filled with.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
He was quite a good sleeper in infancy as I've mentioned before. Argh! I knew talking about it would jinx it! Right around three and a half months, he was really putting up a fuss one night at bedtime. I opened the door to his room and he turned toward the light, saw me, and stopped crying. Of course, at the time, I thought how sweet that he stopped crying when he saw me. I got all Sally Field and exclaimed in my head, "he likes me! He really likes me!" Hi, I'm stupid. Ever since that switch went off that told him crying = mom and dad come in, his sleeping has regressed and then regressed some more. What started off as him getting up every 2-3 hours has now become every 1-2 hours. I can tell you with certainty that when you get up at 5:00 AM and have been up 4-5 times throughout the night, the "Cry It Out" method starts to make a lot more sense.
There is a lot of controversy about "Cry It Out" though and some people would have you believe you are a bad parent for attempting it. I can tell you that hearing North cry for the last hour was the hardest thing I've had to do thus far. I don't think parents take the decision to try this sleep method lightly, we didn't anyway. I've been thinking about using this sleep training method for weeks and attempted it, only to fail, pick him up and hold/feed/rock him until he finally fell asleep. It physically pains me to hear him cry, as I think it does any parent. Point is, "Cry It Out" is not for everyone. But we have to try to teach him how to soothe himself so we can start to get some sleep again. As much as I hate admitting it, sleep deprivation really does take a physical toll after awhile. Damn you body limitations!
I've been beating myself up for the last week thinking we are to blame for his sleep issues (and you know, we are really). At first I thought our routine was not strict enough. Then I thought maybe I was not feeding him enough. And finally I realized that I needed to stop listening to every one's opinions about how they raised their baby and figure out what my son needs. I need to stop comparing North to other babies and myself to other mothers. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate any advice given to me from another mother. I have learned a great deal through the insight of other moms. But to blame myself when what worked for someone else doesn't have any impact on solving our sleep issues is silly. I cannot cram our life and my baby into another family's situation and expect to get the same results they did every time.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Three days into eating solids and he's still waking up every two hours though. We're still hopeful that introducing solids now will help though. Now for the disclaimers:
Friday, August 21, 2009
pint size mason jars with lids (old food jars work well too)
4 cups water
2 cups white vinegar
1/8 cup sea salt
1 teaspoon dill
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon seasoned salt
1 tablespoon celery salt
6-10 cloves of garlic, sliced thin
10-15 medium sized cucumbers, quartered lengthwise
2-3 jalapeno peppers, optional
Scrub cucumbers and peppers and rinse thoroughly. Place vinegar, water and sea salt in saucepan and bring it to a boil. Meanwhile, quarter the cucumbers and cut up the peppers and garlic. Add half of the dill, garlic powder, seasoned salt, celery salt and garlic to the jars. Pack the pickles and peppers into the jars. Then top with the other half the spices and garlic.
Once brine comes to a boil, remove from stove and pour over the cucumbers until the jar is full. Top with lid and shake. Place full jars outside in the sun for 3 days, turning a couple times a day. After 3 days of sun, put pickles in refrigerator. Pickles will stay fresh for up to 1 year.
Beer is also said to help with mom's milk supply. Or at least that's what I tell myself when I'm sitting in my inflatable pool drinking an icy beer on a 95 degree day while North naps inside the house.
Another food that I use for its magical breastfeeding properties is oatmeal with fruit and nuts. The oatmeal and nuts are fantastic sources of protein. I have found that most of the extra calories I need for breastfeeding are best found in protein rich food. Starting off your day with so much protein can help to curb your appetite later in the day too.
As a matter of fact, two night ago, I forced Dave into a Wendy's drive thru at gunpoint because I needed a bacon cheeseburger at 9:00 PM. Cravings can be just as bad as the ones felt during pregnancy, especially if your child is going through a growth spurt.
But back to delicious oatmeal. I eat it almost every day. This recipe is so much better than the kindergarten paste oatmeal I sometimes have to eat at work. Once you try steel cut oats, you may never go back to quick oats again. You could use all steel cut oats in this recipe (increase the milk 1/4 cup if you do). I tweaked the recipe a bit so that I could get rid of some reserves of rolled oats in my pantry. Steel cut oats are also a bit expensive, but worth it. In case you have a hard time finding them, they are also called coarse-cut oats, Irish oats, or pinhead oats. The latter is kind of mean though.
I would recommend using peaches or pears for the fruit and almonds for the nuts. So so good! Dave even ate it with ice cream last night because he is trying to increase his milk supply too. Anyway, I'll shut up now, here's the recipe.
Fruity Nutso Baked Oatmeal
1 1/2 cups steel cut oatmeal
1 cup rolled oats
3 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 cup fruit (can be fresh, canned or dried)
1/2 cup nuts (walnuts, pecans and almonds work great)
Combine ingredients and let sit for 15 minutes. Pour mixture into a 9 X 13" glass baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Leftovers can be refrigerated up to a week or frozen. Best served warm with milk. Serves 9.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
We spent the past weekend camped in a small cabin off the Blue Ridge Parkway in the NC mountains. Dave and I went tent camping here when we first met five years ago over Memorial Day 2004. Funny to think we would be married a year later and have you five years later.
On Saturday afternoon we drove to Burnsville, NC, where there happened to be an Arts Festival in progress. But it also happened to be in a dry county, didn't allow dogs, had a lack of ATMs and did I mention no beer tents? So we had some barbecue and went on our merry way. We stopped at a train car that might have been some one's house on the way back towards camp. This picture has been dubbed North West.
Oh the fun we have with your name. It just never stops North!
Friday, August 7, 2009
I can't believe it's August and you're already four months old. You're decidedly not a baby anymore. I watched your pooping video from when you were just a few weeks old yesterday and already I do not recognize that earlier version of you. I cannot imagine a you that doesn't smile, giggle, babble and flirt. Oh yeah, and fly.
Currently, you are going through what I'm guessing is a growth spurt or maybe it's the four month wakeful period I have read a bit about. Either way, you are up about every three hours through the night. Previously, you would only wake up one time, so your sleep regression took us by surprise. But I do not mind the sleep interruptions because I love spending that time with you before I have to go into work for the day. I will gladly give up a bit of sleep to stare at your tiny sleepy face cast in a soft blue light from the projection machine we use as a night light.
We spend a lot of time in front of the mirror when you are not upset too. Sometimes, it is the easiest way for me to see your face. Because you still love perching on my shoulder facing backwards for hours a day, every now and then I carry you to a mirror just so I can see your face light up in smiles as you see our reflection. So there it is, I miss you even when I'm holding you in my arms.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
6 medium peppers, rinsed and cored
Prepare your rice according to the directions. I throw a chicken bouillon cube in with the water and rice for a little more fla-vah. While that is cooking, rinse and core your peppers. You know, speaking of researching other recipes online beforehand, one particular recipe instructed me to cut the top inch of the pepper off and discard. Holy waste of pepper! Instead, I used a tiny pairing knife and cut a circle around the stem until it pulled up. Then I used my fingers to get all the seeds and gave the inside a quick rinse. Perhaps a little more work, but much less wasteful.
I cooked these on the stove top, covered on medium low heat for about an hour. Top with cheese and eat.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
This salad couldn't be any easier. My sister in law served it to me a few weeks ago and I was all, "please sir, may I have some more" because I like to quote Oliver! (I've never understood the exclamation point in this musical title. Does that make it sound more exciting?) She took pity on me and told me it was just cucumbers, seasoned salt and sour cream. I've adapted the recipe a little today because I need to get rid of more vegetables than that:
1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
1 dollop of sour cream
1 tsp white vinegar
seasoned salt to taste
pepper to taste
1/4 cup onion (optional)
1/3 cup chopped tomatoes (optional)
Directions: combine, let it hang out for a bit and eat.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The pan I used for bacon was big enough that I could eventually throw everything into it and use up the grease and yummy bits already in the pan. One thing that bugs me about cooking shows is the sheer number of pans and bowls used during the cooking process. Obviously Alton Brown is not washing his own dishes man. That guy could make some oatmeal and somehow dirty every dish, pan and possibly brick (he loves to use bricks in his oven) in his kitchen. So anytime I can get a pot or pan to do double duty, I do it as a slap in the face to Mr. Good Eats.
But back to the serious matter that is at hand. With the bacon fried and resting on paper towels, I threw the boiled and drained peas into the big ol' pan with all the bacon 'juice'. That makes it sound healthier right?
In the same pan, I tossed some garlic, onion, squash, orange and red cherry tomatoes, basil and salt and pepper. Most any vegetable would work in this dish for sure, so whatever you've got would probably be tasty. I topped everything with a bit of the green tube parmesan....because that is all I had on hand ok? Remember my assignment to use only what I had? Well, sorry I don't keep fancy pants parmesan reggiano stocked at the ready at all times mister fancy boy! Confession: I like Easy Cheese too.
1/2 lb pink eyed purple hull peas,
5 strips of bacon
1/4 box mini fusilli pasta, cooked according to package
1-2 cloves of garlic, diced
1/3 cup onion, diced
1 squash cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
4 basil leaves, chiffonade (shredded if you don't speak fancy)
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
As you can see from the bounty above, we have a ton of fresh produce this week. My lovely sister-in-law is also a member of our CSA and they are traveling this week to New York state, so she offered us her share. I'm going to challenge myself to cook only with ingredients that I already have on hand and pair them with as much of this local produce as possible. I enjoy cooking with basic staples available almost anywhere because you don't always need expensive ingredients to make delicious food. Plus, I love the frugality of it all.
I will take pictures and post the rough recipe for each dish created. Maybe it will inspire other households to take on the same challenge and use up stuff they've already got on hand or stop by a local farmer's market. Or maybe these recipes will spark a new idea for how to use up veggies from your garden. Lord knows I need some tips myself because currently I have tomatoes coming out of my wazoo. (Please note, wazoo is in the dictionary.)
Anyway, be forewarned that I don't really follow recipes when I cook, I just start looking around to see what I've got and throw it in. So the measurements that I include in these recipes are approximate. A lot depends on personal taste and yours may be different than mine.
This brings to mind something I've heard people say that steams my buns a bit. They claim that they are overweight because of the cheaper processed foods their meager budget forces them to buy. I'm here to yell from my soapbox, that is a load of manure. Dave and I have spent $2 on a pot of lentil soup and eaten a low calorie and nutritious dinner for days! You can cook healthy and thrifty meals for pennies if you plan right. I hope the recipes that follow in the coming days help to drive that point home.
Whew, sorry to get so preachy. I feel pretty strongly about processed food and the link to obesity apparently. As always, I'd love to hear any other ideas anyone has for using up these veggies too!