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luke warm salad

This is super tasty…

ingredients: 4 pieces of asparagus

1/2 shallot, minced

1tbs olive oil

handful of red grapes

2 handfuls of fresh spinach

 

directions: dressing- whisk oil, balsamic, shallots, and mayo. season to taste.

cook the asparagus and shallots in oil over medium until asparagus is slightly soft, remove from heat. After 2 minutes of cooling add to spinach, grapes, and top with a balsamic vinagrette.

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in your open-face breakfast

Sunday morning. Freshly fallen snow on the ground. Lots of Homework waiting to be procrastinated. And Dana crawling into my bed…purring like a cat and describing the contents of a breakfast sandwich. She tells me this is the breakfast sandwich to end all breakfast sandwiches.  With words like ‘prosciutto’ and ‘cheese’ being thrown around, I am willing to taste test the breakfast sandwich to end all breakfast sandwiches. Now I am open to other suggestions for the best breakfast sandwich ever title, but I will say that this is a breakfast sandwich worth getting out of bed for.

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DANA’S in your OPEN-FACE BREAKFAST sandwich (makes 4 sandwiches)

2 English muffins |||| 4 slices of skim-milk mozzarella |||| 4 slices of prosciutto |||| 4 eggs |||| 10 asparagus stalks

1. Slice English muffins and toast in the toaster.

2. Fry the eggs – over easy, sunnyside, or get fancy and steam them like Dana did.

3. Steam the asparagus. Wrap the asparagus in a wet papertowel and pop it in the microwave for 1-2 minutes for a super fast asparagus steaming solution.

4. Assemble the sandwiches. Use one half of the English muffin. The cheese is on the bottom, then the prosciutto, then the asparagus, then top it all off with the egg. You can add some pepper on top but I wouldn’t sugguest adding any more salt since the proscitto is already pretty salty.

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kathy cooked!

SHRIMP JAMBALAYA

1 pound cooked shrimp |||| 2 cups celery, chopped |||| 1 1/2 cups green pepper, chopped |||| 1 cup onion, chopped |||| 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning |||| 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano |||| 4 tablespoons olive oil |||| 2 14-0unce cans of chicken broth |||| 1 1/2 cups uncooked brown rice |||| 1 cup tomato, chopped

1. In a large skillet cook the celery, green pepper, onion, Cajun seasoning, and oregano in the olive oil until the vegetables are tender. Then carefully add the broth and the uncooked rice to the skillet.

2. Simmer mixture for about 30 minutes, or until the rice is cooked.

3. Then add the shrimp and tomatoes. Cook until the shrimp is heated through.

Kathy cooked! I love it when that happens! Seeing that its the first weekend back after Christmas Break a pot luck was in order. Angie graciously invited everyone over to her place. I had work at the diner until late so Kathryn got started on our contribution to the pot luck: JAMBALAYA.

The food at the pot luck was so fresh and delicious. Ms Angie made  salmon fillets, Mitchell brought a nice salad with homemade dressing, Dana made her infamous artichoke dip, someone made mashed potatoes with mushroom gravy……kind of a weird combo of dishes, but it all tasted good. The pot luck spanned the entire evening with friends coming in and out. Lots of laughing and story telling and catching up was necessary after a month of vacation. And there is no better way to catch up than with a pot luck and about 8 bottles of wine.

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Tea time

I’m wondering about any thoughts or ideas anyone has about tea. What should tea do for you, how should it make you feel? what makes a good tea pot? what should your tea pot look like? do you have a personal ceremony for drinking tea? did tea give you your first kiss when you were 12? anything. seriously. I need to design and make a tea pot before the semester is out and it should have meaning! (right?) So, let me know, help a girl out, thanks!

Dana

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Let’s hear it for edible flowers

So, when you’re little and you grow up in California they teach you all about the yucca plant (aka the indian* supermarket). You can make anything out this plant.. soap, rope, needles, weapons, bunk beds, etc.  and you can eat the flowers. They have this sorta sweet crunchy lettuce-like thing going on and taste awesome with vanilla cupcakes covered in rosewater*. Here is a cool site about edible flowers and what to eat them with: http://www.herbs-teas.com/edibleflowers.html.

*the 90s weren’t really politically “correct”

**you can find rosewater at most supermarkets

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on the radar

homejarI’ve been thinking about this lately: Crunchy Nutella. Imagine improving on the practically perfect food spread with chunks of hazelnuts. It would be like the chocolate version of crunchy peanut butter. First question, gross or God’s gift to humankind?Discuss. Second question, Why haven’t those Italian Nutella maker people come up with this already? Maybe they tried making crunchy Nutella and there was a horrific food lab disaster…maybe crunchy Nutella already exists in Italy and secret trade barriers are prohibiting imports to the United States…maybe, just maybe, no one has bothered to come up with such an ingenious idea for changing an already scrumptious product. We may never know, but I am seriously considering an at home DIY test run sometime this weekend.

padmaintro1The TOP CHEF Season 5 premiere was this week. Biggest downside of not having cable: missing out on Bravo’s reality series. Luckily, Bravo is hip to itand posts new episodes online the day after they premiere on TV. Now there is no excuse not to watch. I watched the first episode of season 5 last night. Looks like its going to be a good season. Although I am kind of disappointed that the rookie got booted on the first challenge.

condiment-gun

Check this out! Its a squirt gun made for squirting condiments. Now I am not the biggest condiment fan, but this is pretty fricking cool. I would consider putting some mustard on the top of my next hotdog, if the mustard shot out of a plastic toy gun. Even the staunchest condiment haters will be converts. Every site seems to be sold out of these guys, so you’re gonna have to win one on ebay if you really just can’t live without a ketchup revolver for one day longer.

waitress5b15dI just started a new job working at a diner this week. The reason why I was hired is because two weeks ago a group of waitresses went on strike, claiming they weren’t receiving the accurate amount of tips. You see, at this particular diner the policy is that the waitresses combine their tips and the manger distributes them equally at the end of the shift. I don’t know all the details, but this group of waitresses thought they were getting cheated out of money, didn’t show up for work, and got fired. I don’t like this policy (I want to keep managers/clowns/the man/governmnet’s hands off my money), but at this point I really, really need a job. Here is the only thing I have to say about this whole tipping waitress strike scandal: I would be willing to bet all of my tips from this week on that fact that this group of waitress, who went on strike over a redistributive policy, all voted Democrat.

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A+ Fries

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6 red russet potatoes |||| 1 cup flour |||| 1 tablespoon each oregano, salt, and pepper |||| 1 teaspoon chili powder |||| 2 cups olive oil

1. Chop the potatoes into french fry shape. Leave the skins on.

2. Mix flour and spices in a large bowl. 

3. Toss the diced potatoes in 1/2 cup of the olive oil. Then toss in the flour mixture.

4. Heat remaining olive oil in a deep skillet. When oil is hot, add the potatoes in small batches. Cook for about 10 minutes, or until fries are golden and crispy. Remove from oil, sprinkle with salt, and dunk in some ketchup.

 

Last weekend, Angie’s roommate Dave made us some french fries. All week I was thinking about making my own fries and how I would do it differently. Dave’s fries were really good, he put old bay seasoning on them, but honestly these fries are way better. Dave’s fries get an A, but these fries get an A+.

The secret is in the spiced flour breading on the outside. It gives the oil something to stick to and makes the fries extra crispy. You could really kick up the spice mixture and make these more like Cajun fries if you added more chili powder. Or you could add some garlic or onion powder. Oh, and Parmesan cheese would be so so decedent . . . crispy, cheesy fries. Just thinking about it makes my mouth water.

In terms of cooking these A+ Fries, change the oil after 2 batches of fries. And make sure that the oil is hot before adding the potatoes. Otherwise, the recipe is pretty easy. Well, the clean up kinda sucks and it makes the house smell like a deep fryer. But its a small price to pay for golden, fried goodness.

Dana, Jeff G, and I had these fries with sloppy joes (or untidy Josephs as Dana’s mom calls them). We pretended that the sloppy joe mix was Manwich even though it was just the lame-o Food Club brand.

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