Sunday, January 31, 2010

menu : week five

Grilled cheese and short rib sandwiches with pickled caramelized onion and arugula (bon appetit, february 2010, page 18)

Rigatoni with sausage, peppers and onions (everyday pasta, page 95)

Cheddar, bacon and chive biscuit ham sandwiches (bon appetit, february 2010, page 44)
roasted asparagus

Ravoli with red pepper sauce

Shrimp dumplings, rice and scallion pancakes

Mac and cheese (Tyler Florence's Ultimate)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

menu recap : week four

Pasta with walnut ricotta sauce was only a medium success. Only half liked it enough to have it again.

Potato bacon, Three cheese, Plain, Puttanesca with cheese
Homemade pizza is always a good dinner. My favorite is the potato and bacon.
Tortellini with brown butter sage sauce is good when I need a fast dinner.

Pork paillards with sour cream paprika sauce over noodles was a hit. Everyone liked it. If I make it again I will double the sauce.

Miso soup with shrimp and vegetables is another good dinner for a busy school night.

Chicken quesadillas always a good dinner to make. I roast the chicken breasts with olive oil, lime juice, cumin, salt and pepper and then shred then for the quesadillas. I serve them with sour cream, salsa, and guacamole.

Sadly we did not make it into the city. I was way to cold to take the kids in and walk around. Instead we went out to a new mexican place when my husband got home. The place was good. It is not our new favorite, but is a place to go again. We are lacking for restaurants in this area.

Friday, January 29, 2010


I added these tags to my etsy shop. I have lots more patterns to add.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

perfect : crafts

You're a fox craft kit available at Red Velvet Art.

photo from Red Velvet Art

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


I pretty much gave up on trying to sell cards and some how this month, out of the blue, I sold seven packs. In full disclosure, four were to my sister-in-law (thanks!!), but I'll take what I can get.

Inspired a bit, I listed a few sets and will try to get some more up.

Monday, January 25, 2010

project : barrettes

These are sweet. You can learn how to make them over at The Purl Bee.

photo by the purl bee

Sunday, January 24, 2010

menu : week four

Pasta with walnut ricotta sauce

Potato bacon, Three cheese, Plain, Puttanesca with cheese

Tortellini with brown butter sage sauce

Pork paillards with sour cream paprika sauce over noodles (MS Living, January 2010, page 61)

Miso soup with shrimp and vegetables

Chicken quesadillas
Mexican rice

Dinner in NYC (fingers crossed)

Saturday, January 23, 2010

menu recap : week three

Burgers and fries

It was mild enough to grill, so who does not love burgers on the grill. I make my own fries, very easy. Just cut up the potatoes into long frie shaped slices, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast in a four hundred degree oven for about 40-50 minutes, or until crip outside and soft inside.

(Birthday dinner)
Roasted duck and mushroom gravy
roasted beets
chocolate and pistachio cream pie

As I wrote before this dinner was a hit. I call it the white meal.

Italian white bean, pancetta and tortellini soup

This was a hit. Very easy to make. Serve with a good crusty bread.

Confetti Chili

I make this a few times every winter. The kids love it. I served it over rice and topped with cheese and sour cream.

Spaghetti Puttanesca

This turned out fine. The boys were not crazy for it, but the girls loved it. I had a bunch of sauce left, so I will use it for the girls lunch.

Chicken tikka masala
basmati rice

This meal turned out well. The sauce was pretty spicy. Luckily my kids can take a decent amount of heat. Th naan was killer. I will make it again. I tried the sauce and was not thrilled with it. I was wishing it wad more like the one that we get at the Indian place we like. I have come across a few other recipes for the chicken, so I will give one a try in a few weeks.

Friday, January 22, 2010

birthday part two

Along with the scarf that I made for my friend I also got her a six pack of cupcakes from Crumbs. She has a sweet tooth like no one I know. My husband was kind enough to run and pick them up for me and I dropped them off when he got home. He picked out six different types: red velvet, s'mores, sprinkle, apple pie, snowcaps, and peanut butter cup. I hope that they were a success.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


A friend is having a birthday on sunday so I made her this felted scarf. No pattern, I just made it up. I think that this is the fifth or sixth scarf that I have made her (along with two hats). She is the only person that I know who wears scaves as much as I do.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


It is a week of beauty for me. I cashed in my two gift cards and got my hair cut (well over six inches chopped) and my nails done both in the same week. I think that this is a first for me.

photo from NYT style magazine

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

perfect : kids

Mushroom pouf @ anthropologie.

photo by anthropologie

Monday, January 18, 2010


I found this free calendar design from something's hiding in here. Print them out and share with friends.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


The birthday dinner was a success. My husband said that everything turned out well. The kids love duck (I pass on the duck, I am not a meat, poultry or fish lover, I could easily give them up) and are always happy when we make it, once a year.

The pie was just a mild success. It is not a make again as is. I think if i tried it again I would use pecans instead, but I am not sure I would even try it. Can't win them all.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

menu : week three

Burgers and fries

(Birthday dinner)
Roasted duck and mushroom gravy
spaetzle (The Joy of Cooking)
roasted beets
chocolate and pistachio cream pie (Pie by Angela Boggiano)

Italian white bean, pancetta and tortellini soup (Everyday Pasta, page 67)

Confetti Chili (The Food You Crave, page 187)

Spaghetti Puttanesca (Wlliams-Sonama)

Chicken tikka masala (MS Living, January 2010)
basmati rice
naan (The Joy of Cooking)

Friday, January 15, 2010

menu recap : week two

Spaghetti and meatballs is always a family favorite. I make a huge pot of sauce and freeze what we don't use for other dinners.

Leek, bacon and pea risotto was good. It made a ton, so I sent it with the kids for lunch.

Pork tenderloin, spinach and polenta was good. Only two of the kids liked the polenta. The recipe made a ton of polenta, which I poured half of into an oiled baking dish and left to set. I fried it in some butter and put honey over it for breakfast on Friday morning. Two out of four liked the breakfast polenta.

Tex-mex cornbread skillet was a hit. I changed the recipe a bit and sprinkled some cheddar over the top of the cornbread before baking. I just served it with some sour cream on top, a very easy dinner.

Roasted tomato and cipollini tuscan bean salad with tuna is a great make ahead dinner. The kids were all in different places after school, so I made this and just served it to them when they were able to sit down to eat.

One skillet pasta with chicken and broccoli is a really good dinner. My husband loved it and said it would even be great without the chicken.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


After a three week break (way to cold weather, kids at home and sick) from running , I got back to it today. I will confess, I am a huge baby when it comes to the cold. I have determined that if it is under about thirty four degrees I am not able to run outside, so I had to move it indoors today and run on the treadmill. Not the same, but something is better than nothing.

Jogging in the snow by missimomo

Monday, January 11, 2010

perfect : knitting

Sweet Pea bulky superwash merino handspun yarn by Marion.

photo by marion

Sunday, January 10, 2010

menu : week two

Spaghetti and meatballs

Leek, bacon and pea risotto (Food Everyday, October 2009, page 86)

Pork tenderloin, spinach and polenta (Food Everyday, January 2010, page 73)

Tex-mex cornbread skillet (24 boxes blog)

Roasted tomato and cipollini tuscan bean salad with tuna

One skillet pasta with chicken and broccoli (24 boxes blog)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

menu recap : week one

I thought it would make sense to recap how the meals were received and any changes that I made to the recipes.

I make quiche about two or three times a year. I change what type it is, but I know going into it that no. one does not like any kind of quiche. I do not make special meals for whomever decided that they do not care for the dinner, they just eat the other dishes that I serve.

Skillet Lasagna is so easy to make and a hit with everyone. It makes a ton and we always have some left that I send in the kids lunchboxes.

Chicken Noodle Soup

The Vegetarian Enchiladas were a hit. It is the first recipe that I have made from The Kitchen Bible. However, I did change the recipe a bit. I used flour totillas that I made, I doubled the sauce and the filling as well. The sauce is great and can now never buy a can of enchilada sauce again.

I made Penne with Italian Sausage, Cream, Tomatoes and Peas from the cookbook Dinner at My Place once before. It is a good dish. How could something with heavy cream, cheese and pasta not be.

Friday, January 8, 2010

happy birthday

Today is my husband's birthday. Sadly we are not doing anything fun tonight (a basketball game for no. one) bu we will all go out to eat tomorrow night (his choice) and then he will pick a meal for me to make on Sunday.

Happy Birthday!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

perfect : jewerly

I am not of a decorative jewerly wearer. I have wore the same necklace for over twelve years (never taken if off), but I thought that this was pretty. I think that I was drawn to the color.

Necklace by Orangepoppy.

photo by orangepoppy

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


It's cold out, a perfect chicken soup kinda day.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


I got a bit behind in posting again. no. one got sick on New Year's Eve day, which killed our trip into the city. I was rather bumbed out. I plan at least two trips into the city every year with the kids, New Year's Eve day and then one at the end of the school year for a happy summer dinner out in NYC. The summer dinner was canceled due to my husbands family coming into town and then our trip the other day. Sooner or later we will get there.

To make things a bit worse, he passed his illness on to me (thank goodness only me, knock wood). I have not been as sick as I was on Sunday in a long while, I was knocked out sick, loose three pounds in a day sick. Sadly, it is a lingering illness and expect for handfuls of pretzels here and there I still can not bare to eat anything, nor do I even want to.

Anyway, what I was going to post about is New Year's resolutions. I usually do not make them, but I have two this year. The first is to get my hair cut more than once this year. I usually go about once a year and when I go I swear that I am going to return to keep it looking good (it never relly looks good, it is just degrees of looking bad) but never make it. I do not like my hair too long and let's just say I am in need of a cut ASAP. The second resolution is to keep running. I have been running on a regular basis since July and plan to keep going.

date books by paper source.

Monday, January 4, 2010

menu : week one

Bacon and Cheese Quiche (The Joy of Cooking, I have an earlier edition)
Home fries

Skillet Lasagna (Food Everyday, September 2009, page 97)

Chicken Noodle Soup

Vegetarian Enchilada (The Kitchen Bible, page 57)
Mexican Rice

Penne with Italian Sausage, Cream, Tomatoes and Peas (Dinner at My Place, page 180)

Sunday, January 3, 2010


A little over three yeas ago I was in a cooking rut. We would head to the food store every weeknd and just walk through the aisles buying stuff. It is not like I was gooing junk, I was cooking good stuff, but I seemed to be rotating the same dished every few weeks. Also, since we were shopping without a plan we wasted some food.

After we gutted and redid our kitchen I decided to adopt a new approach to cooking for us. I sat down every week and went though my cookbooks and magazines and planned out a weeks worth of meals. I made a shopping list based on what we were having that week. My goal was to try and make something new almost every night, which when you have as many cookbooks and subscribe to as many cooking magazines as I do, is not that hard.

I am happy to say that I am still doing our weekly menus. Last January I got a journal and decided to keep track of what I made, where the recipe is from, if not in my head, and whether or not it was a hit.

I thought it would be fun to share the weekly menus with you this year. I'll try to link any recipes that I use from the web and share some of my own on occasion.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

cookies : chocolate chip

I am still working on the Levain cookie recipe. I have now tried four different recipes. I have read as many blogs as I can on the recipe, but it does not seem like anyone has figured it out.

The biggest problem that I am having is that the cookies are spreading to much. In my next test batch I am going to play around with the temperate a bit. I am running out of time to try these. I am planning another detox for Monday and there is nothing in these that is allowed.

Batch number four was not the one, but it is an awesome cookie. Give it a try.

Batch Four
Makes 7 very large cookies

1 stick unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 egg
1-1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 cup flour
5 oz semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In the bowl of a mixer beat butter and sugars until just combined. Add egg and mix. In another bowl mix the flour, baking soda and baking powder. Add to butter mixer and mix until just combined. Add chocolate chip and mix until combined.

Divide dough into seven large balls. Be careful not to pack the dough to tight. Place on a large cookie sheet making sure not to place them to close together.

Bake for 16-17 minutes.

Friday, January 1, 2010

happy new year

wishing you a happy 2010.