Saturday, May 18, 2019

Book Club - Sinner by Petra Hammesfahr


It must be nice in his watery world, where there were no tunes, and no dark dreams, where nothing could be heard but faint gurgles, and everything was a mysterious shade of green....

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

A tale of three mousses

Here's the thing.  I finally tried 2 dessert recipes I've been hauling around forever, and there were SO delicious.  My photos though were hideous, even by my low standards.  So, so bad.

I was going to not write about them because I have no accompanying photos and all the blawgs today say you have to have 400 photos of your dish, all from slightly different angles, before you can share anything. 

But here we go.  I'm such a rebel.

Here's a picture I took last Fall downtown at the farmers market.

The first dessert I made was Apple Mousse from a book called The World in my Kitchen.
I wrote this out back in my notebook heyday when we were in Calgary, so this one has been around a long time.

Apple Mousse
adapted from The World in my Kitchen

Peel 4 Granny Smith apples.  Core and cut into 1" pieces.
Melt 3 TB butter in a small pot or pan.  Add apples and a pinch of salt and cook over low heat until soft.  Removed from heat and puree in a food processor with 1/2 cup sugar and 2" piece of ginger.  Let cool.
Beat 1 cup whipping cream until stiff.  Fold in apples.  Chill.

Soooooo delicious!  I subbed out the ginger for some cinnamon but next time I will leave the ginger in.  This dessert is so light and airy and would be perfect for an after dinner treat on a warm day.


Up next is another moldy oldie that I've had since 2003- 2 0 0 3!  And still hadn't tried.  This one came from Martha Stewart from her Every Day Food magazines.  Loved those.

Here's a photo of my turkeys last month at the Oak Hills Trail.

I'm just going to link to the recipe here  - it is so easy and so decadent.  I didn't make the parfaits, but spooned the 2 mousses side by side in a bowl so everyone could have what they liked.  And boy did we like it.

This tasty and long overdue post is making me want to add on to my every growing list of project that will likely never be finished and cook through all the recipes I've been saving in my binder all these years, plus all the ones saved on my computer, and in Pinterest, and.......... 

Oh look!  Something shiny.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Something I Like - My Favorite Murder podcast

I go through a lot of phases of what to listen to during the work week - classical, nature sounds, yoga music, folk, and currently I'm in to podcasts.
I started listening to MFM last month I was hooked right away.
It's interesting and funny and I have a huge crush on Karen Kilgariff.
It's a bit of an odd choice for me, I think, since I have anxiety and spend a lot of time worrying about bad things happening, but somehow it doesn't send me into a spiral.
Check it out 

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Book Club - Lightly by Francine Jay


"Possessions can be powerful psychological triggers; it's almost as if emotions get stuck to your stuff.  When you release physical clutter, mental clutter also gets swept away with it, giving you a jump start on your path to inner well-being."

Tuesday, May 07, 2019

Grocery Shop May 6

goldfish crackers, eggs, cheese slices, french fries, croutons, coconut chips, grapes, cucumber, broccoli, lettuce, cauliflower, snap peas, strawberries, bacon, ground beef, chicken breast, bread - whole wheat and white (for meatloaf!), tortillas, deli ham.


Sunday, April 21, 2019

The easiest - hardboiled eggs in the Instant Pot

I think I've mentioned before that I am terrible - truly terrible! at peeling hard boiled eggs.
No matter what method I try I always gouge half the white off with the shell.  I can't help it; it's a gift.

Before we got our instant pot I'd read that making hardboiled eggs in it was not only easy, but they were super easy to peel too.  

It's a true damn miracle guys.

And it's also true that hardboiling the eggs in the IP is super easy as well.

Pour 1 cup of water into the bottom of the IP.  Place the steam rack in the pot, and lay on as many eggs as you'd like.

Put the lid on and set the pressure cook setting for 5 minutes.
When it beeps, let it sit for 5 more minutes, then vent to release the pressure.

Remove the eggs to an ice bath and let cool.

Not only is it fast and foolproof, but THE EGGS POP RIGHT OUT OF THE SHELLS.
It's a beautiful thing.

We've been making a batch every couple of weeks and I sometimes make a couple of deviled eggs for breakfast - and this weekend I've been eyeing this muffuletta deviled eggs recipe.

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Kamloops Symphony Book Sale - for the last time I promise

I got invited to go to the book sale at lunch today and found more treasures!  I had just enough money to pay for these ones - if I'd had more bucks, there were at least 3 more books that would have come home with me.

Sale is on until April 20!

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

ways with cauliflower

Cauliflower is everywhere now - it's rice, it's pizza crust, it's wings.  

We love cauliflower and having some new exciting ways to cook it is fun.

This kick started a bit of a cauliflower craze in the house that went well until we tried cauliflower biscuits which was a bad idea.  So bad.

Stick with wings and crusts, Cauli.  Although I hear beets are trying to make a move on your turf....

Sunday, April 14, 2019

Kamloops Symphony Book Sale - part 2

Went back yesterday for another look-see and found 4 more beauties to bring home.

The Mister hit the big time with this old Star Wars book.  He had this as a child.  I might have too.

Sale is on until April 20 - get down there! 

Sunday, April 07, 2019

Kamloops Symphony Book Sale - Spring 2019

I am super excited about my purchases from the book sale -
my first two David Sedaris books! 
 (Yes, I am obsessed.)
The book sales is in a new location this Spring - the old Value Village location on Seymour. 
On until April 20.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

French Toast cups, banana muffins, chicken cordon bleu and meal planning

I am mentally and physically stuck in huge ruts right now.  My house is cluttered and unorganized and none of my good intention projects have been started.  I am GAINING weight, I feel like this is something I need to focus on here soon as I just can't seem to find long lasting motivation for that either.

Winter has done me in, I think, even though up until the end of January it was not a particularly hard one, but I am done.  I need blue skies and warm air and green grass.

I need happiness and gentle talk and encouragement and I can't find any of that in me lately.

ANYWAY, here are 3 recipes that I made in the past bit that turned out quite well.

French Toast Cups from Chrissy Teigen -

SO good.  Croissants instead of bread mixed with beaten egg and milk and sugar and such and then nestled into a little ham nest for baking.

I made these best ever banana muffins (added some chocolate chips!!!)  and everyone loved them.
They were super easy and good.  My family mowed through them in no time and requested more.

We all really loved Skillet Chicken Cordon Bleu  it was an easy weeknight dinner and very delicious.
The idea of just laying the ham and cheese on the chicken is so smart and saves so much time and headaches.  And the sauce was deeeelish.


I'm heading into the kitchen to start menu planning for the week so I can get groceries today.

I'm considering the following - 

Crock Pot Gyros - The Mister is particularly excited about this one.

Slow Cooker Cajun Fettuccini   - with probably all the spice left out for the kids.

Curried Lentil Tomato and Coconut Soup - no one will eat this but me.

Pina Colada Cake - I really wanted to make this for work but one of the ladies hates coconut so I might make this for Sunday Dinner.
What's on your meal plan this week?

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Book Club - Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris


My dad was like the Marine Corps, only instead of tearing you to pieces and then putting you back together, he just did the first part and called it a day.  

If you don't want to marry a homosexual, then don't.  But what gives you the right to weigh in on your neighbour's options?  It's like voting on whether or not redheads should be allowed to celebrate Christmas.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Churro Brownies

There is a small group of us at work that have been taking turns bringing in weekly treats to get us through these last gross weeks of winter. We've had cheesecake, and cheesecake topped brownies, and apple pie, and cinnamon buns and cupcakes and ice cream and none of this is doing my bod any good but it's been fun to have something to look forward to, and to take a break and have a few laughs over a delicious snack.

For my first contribution I made Churro Brownies from The Homesick Texan.

It isn't really a brownie as there is no chocolate.  But it is sweet and salty and so delicious.

Everyone was impressed and loved it as much as I did.  This is a make again for sure.

My next week to contribute is coming up and I'm stuck trying to think of something.  I found an old recipe of my mom's for fudge and I'm thinking about giving that a try.  I don't ever remember my mom making fudge, so I'm a bit worried about how it will turn out.  But that is part of the fun, isn't it?

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Christchurch 3-15-19

Hate has no place here.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Book Club - Unbound by Steph Jagger

2019 - 12 

"What I saw from the little window of my plane was more dramatic than I had even imagined.  My welcome to the country was big and bold, as if ruby-red peacocks had been let loose to dance all over the place, streaking everything in sight with their color."

"Who are you?" he asked "And what kind of woman do you want to become?"

"Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain."

"Imagine what's possible now."


I'm currently stuck in a funk/wallowing in self pity in a bunch of aspects of my life and can't seem to get anywhere with anything.
But now at least my reading list is up to date, so that's something, right?

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Book Club - Guess Who by Chris McGeorge

2019 - 11

"Everyone's a liar - to the world, to other people, to themselves."

"Sometimes all we want is to be seen."

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Book Club - A Few Feet Short

2019 - 10

"The hardest part of finding an authentic path is not the effort involved in following through but missing the friends you leave behind."

"I am here, and here is all that matters."

"We don't fly through clouds, because in Nepal the clouds have rocks in them."

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Monday, March 11, 2019

Book Club - The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith


"The dead could only speak through the mouths of those left behind, and through the signs they left scattered behind them."

"How easy it was to capitalize on a person's own bent for self destruction; how simple to nudge them into non-being, then to stand back and shrug and agree that it had been the inevitable result of a chaotic, catastrophic life."

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Book Club - Andrea Martin's Lady Parts


"I hope I have been able to stop the cycle of secrets in my family."

"I was alone, in my head, with no distractions.  And that is not a pretty place to be."

"Miracles do occur.  You can tell her that you are going to cherish the present time together, while waiting for a miracle."

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Book Club - The Dead Moms Club by Kate Spencer


"Mother's Day doesn't have to be just about honoring the living.  But it doesn't have to be about the dead either.  It can be about honoring you, because you are one of the best things she ever did."

"Almost every day I look up to the sky and think, Are you here?  Are you seeing this?"

"She is nowhere, but she is everywhere too."


This is the last of the 3 books on death I impulse purchased last Spring.  (1 here, 2 here.)

Thursday, February 21, 2019

2 muffins from epicurious

My family is cruel and often prefers store bought baking over my own.
These 2 recipes were a hit with them though.
They aren't all bad all the time, my family.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Amazing, beautiful, gorgeous bread

Getting this one from all angles 'cause it's so lovely.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Book Club - Born A Crime by Trevor Noah


"Love is a creative act.  When you love someone you create a new world for them."

"Growing up in a home of abuse, you struggle with the notion that you can love a person you hate, or hate a person you love."

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Freezer Cleanout Part 3

So much room in the freezer.  So much happiness at getting it cleaned out!

Did I mention I have a small life?

So last time I had the following to deal with -

Turkey bones
Meat pies
Apple muffins
Seafood patties
Hawaiian chicken

I made another batch of turkey stock and it got used up on a chicken pot pie with biscuit crust AND  a batch of Mac and Cheese done in the instant pot.
The ham became ham fried rice which the kids loved.
The meat pies are still in the fridge freezer.
The apple muffins got taken to work because no one here was eating them.
Seafood patties got eaten.
Hawaiian chicken got postponed because we had too many leftovers.


Last week was a tough one - I was short on time for menu planning, and we had a couple of nights already set so I didn't need much.  I planned on heating up the leftover container of seafood stew I found, and  to use the hawaiian chicken that hadn't gotten used the week before.
I took a bag of buns out for sandwiches etc.

We are getting into weird territory now - 2 (or possibly more) bags of hashbrowns, so much frozen spinach - both store bought and home frozen.  Spicy sausage that I know the kids won't eat.  Coffee beans.  Lots of black bananas.

Also - I found TWO MORE half bags of ice.  I married a hoarder.   


Neither the seafood stew or hawaiian chicken got eaten as we had so much leftovers from our lunar new years dinner and enchiladas.
The buns didn't defrost well and only a couple got eaten before they started to go moldy.

I have just finished my menu plan for the week and not much from the freezer is involved.

I'm going to use a block of frozen spinach for some creamed spinach tonight.
I'm going to turn some leftover holiday turkey into turkey cakes for tomorrow's dinner.

I found a freezer bag with a ground beef/pork combo we will use for Taco Tuesday.

The Hawaiian chicken is optimistically on the plan for Friday's dinner, but that is so far away who even knows what will happen.

Saturday, February 09, 2019

Another Chrissy Teigen Sunday Dinner - Thai Fishcakes with Peanut Sauce and Skillet Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Blondies

I haven't been taking too many Sunday Dinner photos, or even making a good effort to remember what we had, but here's a super good one from Chrissy Teigen - Thai Fishcakes with Peanut Sauce followed by a completely decadent dessert of chocolate peanut butter blondies.

The fishcakes were very easy to make - I left out the spice for the kids and the Grandfather and they were still perfect.  Peanut sauce is my very favorite and this was a very good one.

The dessert was amazing too and I think we all gained a couple of pounds before we even cut into it.  So rich and good.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

Book Club - Calypso by David Sedaris



"Our silence translated to: Let's pretend we didn't hear that."

"The times I miss her most are when I see something she might have liked: a piece of jewelry or a painting.  The view of a white sand beach off a balcony.  How I'd have loved to spoil her with beautiful things."

 "Man, oh man," he'll say in my memory, lifting his glass and taking us all in, "isn't this just fantastic?"  


My first David Sedaris book.  Heading to the library for another one.

Sunday, February 03, 2019

2019 - February 3 - Day 34 - A Morning in Pictures

My alarm went off at 5 this morning, and I crawled out of bed at 5:30 to see how cold and snowy it was.  
I thought I might do some yoga this morning before I started the less fun jobs but instead I crawled under my blanket in the living room and finished my book.
Got moving at 6:30 - we bought a weather monitor station at Costco last month (The Mister's favorite hobby is obsessing about the weather) and it told me that it was -20 out, with windchill -26.  Wheeeeeee.

I read my to-do list that I wrote last night and decided to start with cleaning the fridge.

This is the after and it's still very full because we are having a Lunar New Year dinner with my Dad tonight.  Lots of delicious dishes are planned.

Next I made tomorrow's dinner - Sour Cream Enchiladas.  I am very excited to try this tomorrow; it was easy to make and looks wonderful.

Cheese grated with my Grandmother-in-laws cheese grater.  I hate grating cheese - hate it! - but The Mister wasn't up yet so I did it myself.

The Girl made herself a peanut butter, strawberry jam and dried apricot tortilla for first breakfast.

For dessert tonight I'm making pineapple hamantaschen.  I made the filling and the dough early as they both need to chill.  The recipe left out the amount of water needed for the dough - I used 3 TB.  We will see shortly if that works out.

Here's the baked enchiladas.  Mmmmmm.

Yesterday morning I read through all the recipes to make my shopping list.  This morning I read them again for timing and discovered that the noodles for the Crispy Chow Mein needed to be cooked in advance so they can dry out, and the shrimp mixture for the Crispy Prawn Balls needs to be in the fridge for a while too.  I cooked the noodles and laid them out to dry, then warmed up the car and drove to my Dad's to get the shrimp. 

Getting ready to make the Hamantaschen - the filling has cooled.

We went to the library yesterday.  Got 2 cookbooks and one memoir.  If I get all the dinner prep done soon, laundry finished, dusting done, and journal work, I can have some reading time!

Hope you are having a lovely Sunday.  Stay warm, be kind, do something nice for yourself today.