Category Archives: Fun with Food
Lots of love out there for thin crust pizza but we really like these cheese crust pies with plenty of toppings. This one has sausage, prosciutto, onions, mushrooms, and pepper rings. We use the snack type string cheese to roll in the edges, it comes in various flavors and types but get the good stuff to be sure it melts nicely.I like to brush garlic infused olive oil on the crust edge and then give it a generous sprinkle of kosher salt.
I had plenty of time to slow cook a small-ish roast of 3 or 4 pounds but I went with the pressure cooker anyway. I added beef broth and red wine from a gallon jug of Carlo Rossi’s generic red. I was tickled the day I bought it when I walked past a woman giving out sips of some kind of (much more expensive) wine to passing shoppers. It’s a wonder we didn’t throw our eyes of of their sockets we were rolling them so hard at each other. Anyway, with the liquids I tossed in a handful of garlic cloves, bay leaves, and celery, carrots and onions to flavor the gravy. I discarded the celery and carrots when I cracked the pot open after an hour and a half because they were mush, adding fresh carrots and potatoes for another short go under the pressure lid – fifteen more minutes plus cool down.Plenty of beef and gravy leftover for a go at a basic veggie beef soup today, adding fresh veggies. This is one of the classic comfort foods on a cold winter day.Annie spend lots of time out on that trampoline looking thing on the front patio, and doesn’t seem to mind the cold. We saw that it had started snowing so we hustled her back inside like a civilized dog.
No one knows why it has the name it does although there is no shortage of guesses. Google led me through several articles that all seemed to be cribbing from the same page. There is a tree called a monkey puzzle tree with bark that looks sorta kinda like one of these things if you squint just right. I won’t be bothered to care much one way or another. Mrs J remembers seeing these made using canned biscuit dough but we went with scratch made from this recipe.This one appears to be pretty close to what we were looking for. We had a tray under it but didn’t need it to catch any sugar bubbling out but it did make it easier to handle. Give it a few minutes to cool, then turn it over onto a platter.Wait too long and it will be glued in there pretty tight. Mix the powdered sugar for the glaze while you wait those few minutes for it to cool.It wouldn’t hurt to add a drop or two of vanilla to the glaze but we didn’t do that. I’m thinking various other additions to the sugar might be gilding the lily but I have some maple extract that might have played a role were I not old and forgetful.We, and by “we” I mean “I”, tore into it right away. You may wish to wait a wee bit longer than I did but the burns on my fingers will heal. No worries!
I did this one today and pretty much made it up as I went along. I had a cauliflower that I needed to use and dithered about some before deciding to slice it and roast it with an onion and whole garlic cloves – seasoned with kosher salt and olive oil. The meal needed some additional carbs so the wide egg noodles went into a post to boil. A cheese sauce seemed perfect to tie it together, Parmesan garlic sounded good. I reduced a hunk of slab bacon to lardons and crisped those up. Worked out great! Needs a name…Here’s a kitteh! He’s named Chase and is 2 years old. Shelter staff mentioned he may have some Himalayan in him but I’m not seeing it, myself. Mrs J notes that he is sitting in one of her newly sewn cat beds.Fried chicken is not a thing I can do very well but I do give it a shot now and again. I go through spells where I just have to have bean salad and I tend to keep adding another can of whatever bean I can find to the container as it is eaten, adding additional vinegar and oil to the vinaigrette as needed. The mixture evolves over time, naturally.Moar kitteh! This is Ringo, a 3 year old long haired boy. Mrs J said he is a real sweetie.Mmm… steak, with roasted sprouts in a balsamic glaze, half of a huge potato, garlic bread, and a salad.Last kitteh – this is Chevy, he’s 6 months old and has half his tail missing do to an accident.I’ll close out with a sloppy joe. This one has a bit of shredded cheddar and a spoonful of my own giardiniera.
Gail, a six month old kitten, was introduced to her her new staff yesterday. After her approval she allowed her new chauffeur to convey her to her new domain. We have no idea what this is. It’s about the size of a softball and is made of various fibers.I suppose it’s possible that it’s just a windblown ball of fluff that has been caught by the branch but it does appear to have been purposely anchored there by several loops of the same fibers as it is built of.Mmm… sloppy joes! I made a quick bean salad with a rice vinegar and olive oil dressing to go with it – based loosely on this recipe.I made corned beef the other day and ran the butt ends and scraps through a food processor just for this hash dish. Frozen shredded potatoes make it a quick and delicious meal. That’s hot sauce on the egg, I like a dash of Tabasco on mine. Gumbo is always a good idea. This one has shrimp, chicken, and some of my homemade Andouille. I still have a little bit left, sealed in vacuum bags and frozen. Vacuum sealing is working out very well, pleased to have rediscovered the method.I made a quick batch of Italian sausage from some plain ground pork because I had my heart set on some and found none at all in the freezer. I was sure I had some!I’ll make kitteh bookends to the post with this snap of Bea. The cats have shredded the carpet on this old cat tree so Mrs J set it outside on the back porch, pending remediation.
I snapped this one from the front door the other day with my cell phone. The scene is lit from behind me by the porch light and from the side by a security lamp mounted on the front of the garage. I like the textures in the photo. Lots of grain from the high ISO number the camera chose due to the relatively low light level.We see the (probably) same fox from last week, this time at night. He’s in a different spot this time but not that far from where the other camera is set up. It’s sniffing at the spot where Mrs J dumps corn, no doubt drawn by the scent left by mice and squirrels.Polenta is something we’ve begun to make and use in lieu of pasta. It’s a nice change of pace. These slices have been fried in olive oil and served under a meat sauce made with Italian sausage and tomatoes. Tasty!Here’s a nice kitteh. She’s 5 months old, named Macy and is ready to go.We tried a pressure cooker recipe for some BBQed ribs the other day and didn’t give them enough time. I abandoned the recipe and made stock with the rack, boiling it all day with assorted veggies after washing the sauce off. Frugal! These pork noodles were the result. I’ve plated them with roasted sprouts and sweet potatoes.Moar kittehs! These guys are exhausted from a play session and are in the middle of a lap nap.Mrs J’s Famous Blueberry Pie! In a rather ill advised move, we tried out a dump cake made with frozen berries, white cake mix, and a can of diet 7-Up. We salvaged the berries and the pie is the result. Tasty!
One nice thing about clear and cold weather is the opportunity it gives for expanded refrigerator space. I let my machine make the dough for this loaf of rye bread but went with the oven to finish it.A little snow accelerates the cooling when you really, really, want to taste the toffee.Inverted on a pastry mat the graham cracker base reminds me of a Mondrian. The last time we made these we used plain pecans for a topping but we wised up and went with the sugared kind this batch.Bean soup! I was lazy so I just opened cans for this one – four different cans so it isn’t like I was totally lazy. And I did make cornbread! Rinse the beans, add them to some onions that you’ve sweated down, cubed ham bits, bay leaves, onion powder, garlic powder, some thyme and oregano, a squeeze of tomato paste, and some chicken stock. Simmer for a half hour or so while the cornbread bakes and lunch is served!Post needs a burger!A sammich needs soup – for balance. It’s a rule, I think. This is a basic chicken noodle with peas, carrots, celery, onions, and hominy.Burritos are always welcome. These are pork with that mole sauce, cheese, rice, and refried beans wrapped in flour tortillas.I’ll close this out with a nice portrait of Katie, on the bed with Bea casting a wary eye. It’s an oldie but goodie.