Friday, July 29, 2011

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Quick and dirty: Curried chicken salad

You could, of course, make your own chicken (or use leftovers), but I went the easy route and used rotisserie. A chicken that someone else has cooked for hours and the preparation of which doesn't negate my air conditioning. I threw this together based on a few recipes on the web, adapting for what I had on hand. Yes, that's kind of a habit. It didn't quite have as much zing as I'd hoped. Maybe lack of yogurt? Did the lame-o chick peas cancel out the flavor? If you have suggestions, hit up the comments.

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Curried chicken salad
Serves 4

  • 2 cooked chicken breasts, chopped or shredded
  • 1 c. canned chick peas, drained
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 1/8 c. finely diced vidalia onion
  • 1 rib celery, diced
  • 1/8 c. raisins
  • 1/2 c. mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp. curry powder
  • Juice from half a lime

  1. Combine chicken, beans, vegetables and raisins.
  2. Mix together mayonnaise, curry and lime until smooth. Add to chicken mixture and toss well.
  3. Serve with warm naan and shredded romaine.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Our new French nanny

We've found someone to mind the Peanut in the evenings. Just for a few minutes -- long enough to let us clear the table and load the dishwasher. The Peanut adores him, asks for him by name even. Only one person could elicit this range of emotion in a toddler in one five minute time span:

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And that person is Jacques Pepin. Or, in our house, "Jock Pa".

I don't know what it is about this lispy old Frenchman, but he captivates my child. Maybe it's the flashy knives or the constant use of Cuisinart brand appliances. Or maybe it's all the butter. Either way, it's fine by me. I finally have someone to pass on my copy of The Apprentice to. Parenting win.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Stick a fork in me

I'm done. With this Monday, anyway.

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When the entire silverware caddy, fresh from the dishwasher, clattered to the floor, all I could could think to do was take a photo.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Keys, please

We just got back from a little jaunt in Key West, celebrating the 30th birthdays of our friends Brooke and Ross. I very nearly didn't bring my camera. For one, I was actually really happy with the shots I got in January and didn't feel like repeating them. And for two, I had every intention of putting the lax in relax and wasn't interested in schlepping (or protecting) my camera.

I totally lived up to number two and had a fabulous time hanging by the pool, meandering up and down Duval Street and stuffing my face with lobster eggs benedict from Blue Heaven (truly heavenly!) and my pictures and sunburnt skin reflect that. I look like Magda from There's Something About Mary and Chris claims I shaved ten years off my life.

Chris insists that that key lime martini will be a our new "signature drink":
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I was content with my share of margaritas:

I did NOT take this awesome sunset picture (thanks, Ryan!):

Because I was busy doing things like this:

Anyway, I think we had the perfect amount of time down there, especially considering that I've experienced just about all of the cultural, artsy stuff. We did manage to catch a round of the Hemingway look alike contest though, and that made for some fun spectating:
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And! Continuing my series of Mounted Police in Random Places:
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Of course I can't end without a picture of food, because we did eat rather well. The best risotto I've ever eaten (carbonara!) from the Rooftop Cafe:

It was underneath a couple of shrimp that looked an awful lot like that scene from Beetlejuice, but it was completely sublime. And we only danced to Harry Bellafonte when we wanted to.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Big baby

This is how a certain rotten little terrier rode in the car today. Maybe he was attracted by the Cheerio crumbs or perhaps he liked the different perspective. I tend to think that he considered all possible car-riding options and choose the one with the darkest upholstery on which to shed. Jerk.

P.S. I promise I don't make it a habit of snapping pics while driving. This was a looong light made even longer by construction. Buckle up, kids! Don't text and drive! Practice defensive parallel parking in case of a zombie apocalypse, etc. etc.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hey, good lookin'

Watcha got cookin'?

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(Mashed potatoes, for the record.)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Friday bliss: goat cheese-stuffed squash blossoms

At Victoria Gastropub

Bonus shot of Chris waiting for his duck fat fries:

(he was clapping, understandably so)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

What we've been eating

I haven't blogged much about food lately, mostly because we've been eating a lot of your basic summer fare - salads of whatever looks ripe, steaks on the grill, various sandwiches and a lot of homemade pizza. But here are a few relatively interesting things I've experimented with in the past week (pardon the schizophrenic lighting):

Steak sandwiches. Thinly sliced rib eye, caramelized onions and a blue cheese butter on Italian bread:
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Seared tofu "steaks" with cold peanut butter noodles:

Localvore grilled cheese. Firefly Farms Mountain Top Blue with local tomatoes and farmer's market herb bread. Oh, and prosciutto. Okay, that wasn't local, but what sandwich isn't enhanced by a little imported pork?

What do you folks have going on in the kitchen or out on the grill?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Chris: I've named the Peanut's stuffed panda Paddy. I decided that's he's Irish.
Me: Irish? Why is the panda Irish?
Chris: Well what did you think he was? Chinese? Don't stereotype.
Me: So what nationality is his stuffed fox?
Chris: Austrian.
Me: But you already named him Mel. Wouldn't Australian be more appropriate?
Chris: No. I will not have a racist fox living under my roof.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I'm not avoiding you

Lately I find myself stepping away from the computer (and even my camera. Gasp!) more and more and just trying to savor summer a bit. Including yesterday, when the Peanut and I visited a local airport and aviation museum. He is currently OBSESSED with "airpanes", so it seemed like good timing.

Behold the cuteness found in the kids dress up bin (and I'm assuming that these things are sanitized and steam cleaned after each use, right? Riiiight. Pink eye party town!):

The Peanut truly enjoyed himself, although I later learned that I can avoid museum admission and just park near the tarmac to keep the kid entertained.

Would have been nice to capture some of these moments with my big boy camera, but there really is something to be said for traveling light.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

4th, follow up

Because I've been lax about uploading photos. Nothing fancy here like long exposure shots of awesome fireworks displays, just good old fashioned grilling and hanging out with the folks.

Oh, and the BEST. APRON. EVER. You're welcome, Internet.

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And perhaps the best ribeyes ever (more on that tomorrow).

And some of the best grandparents ever.

(Whisks are the most patriotic of kitchen utensils, don't you know).

My Grandma and Dad

Rockabye toddler


Happy belated birthday, America!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Sandcastles in the sand

(In case you aren't familiar with the work of Robin Sparkles, click here)

This past weekend featured a different cast of characters - Pop Pop and my cousin Kelly and her family. Chris finally got to live his year-long dream of playing the slots at Ocean Downs. No pictures of that unfortunately, but I can tell you that we were the youngest people, aside from those wearing camouflage.

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Sand crab.

She is a pistol.

And sometimes a good sport.

The Peanut pointing out a plane to Laney and a helpful iced coffee banner for Mommy.

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The newest member of the mamarazzi!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Have a fantastic 4th

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We did! In fact we had a pretty fantastic weekend, so much so that I'm absolutely exhausted.