Thursday, March 31, 2011

Suddenly Spring? Time for an Iced Latte

As if I need an excuse to brew one of these. Recipe: pull two shots of espresso (I count 2 ounces as one shot). Stir in caramel sauce to taste. Pour over crushed ice and top with cold milk.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Corn Bread Curse - Be Gone!

I had a bad experience with a corn bread recipe last week, so my husband decided to bake some from a mix...and he forgot to grease the pans. So, although this tasted better than my experiment, my experiment was prettier :)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Pinto Beans into Bean Dip

A small bag of pinto beans simmered in the crock pot today, along with minced garlic, salt and red pepper flakes. This is a bean dip I plan to use for a seven-layer dip. Directions: rinse and pick through the pinto beans. Cover with about one inch of water. Cook on "high" in the crock pot for 6 hours. Check moisture and add chicken broth, if needed. Cover and cook another 2 hours. Adjust seasonings and use a potato masher to squish the beans. Use as a dip, or a substitute for "refried beans" in any taco or burrito recipe.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Corn Bread Disappointment

Whipped up some homemade corn bread to go with chili last night. I used a Betty Crocker recipe and I'm not going to share it with you because I didn't like it. I've made corn bread before that I did like, but I couldn't find that version. The pan on the left has some chopped jalapenos in it.
It looked and smelled good but tasted quite blah - even the jalapeno loaf.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Taste Test: Desert Blossom Tea

Cheers to a day of sunshine here in Boise. This is "desert blossom" tea my mom sent me. It's a loose-leaf tea that has peach and mango overtones and maybe some berry. I don't know anything else about it, except it made a yummy iced tea this afternoon.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Taste Test: U-Swirl Yogurt

A new self-serve frozen yogurt place has opened along Eagle Road: U-Swirl. A long list of flavors to choose from, including coffee, red velvet cake and cheesecake. Then, you can select toppings that you also serve up for yourself. The yogurt is weighed to determine payment. My daughter filled her container almost full. I filled a container like the one above about 1/3 full of "cake batter" flavored yogurt, and added strawberries, pineapple and whipped cream. My daughter opted for lots of sprinkles. Cost: About $8 for those two servings.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Grilling During a Storm

This "steak on a stick" started outside on the grill...but a big wind storm kept blowing out the flame, so I had to move it indoors under the broiler.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Amish Country Rainbow Popcorn

The kiddo was excited about this, thinking it would pop in full color. Of course, it didn't, but it did pop with shades of white and yellow. We used the vintage air popper to make a batch.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Sauce Day

Spaghetti meat sauce all ready for the freezer after simmering all day. Our version: saute onions and garlic, then brown Italian sausage and hamburger. Add 4-7 cans of crushed tomatoes with Italian seasonings. Simmer all day. That's the key :)

Monday, March 7, 2011


Happy Mardi Gras! I used a gumbo starter from Williams-Sonoma. Saute onions and bell peppers, add sliced Andouille sausage. Cook a few minutes and then add the starter and chicken stock. Simmer for 2-3 hours. Stir in raw shrimp a few minutes before serving. This gumbo is topped with Dungeness crab meat and served over rice.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Taste Test: Wild Sage 'Paris' Tea

Brewed a cup of Wild Sage 'Paris' tea this afternoon, a birthday gift from my friend Faith Proctor. This is a REALLY good tea! Tastes a bit like a breakfast tea with fruit and vanilla scents. Going to look up the company to order more.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Seven Cheese Tri-Color Tortellini

Found the "seven cheese tortellini" offering at Costco. I had only heard of four-cheese before. Tossed it with a light Alfredo sauce and slivers of Black Forest ham. Parmesan and pepper on top.