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Showing posts from May, 2017

Celebrating Fifteen

Fifteen years ago this happened. Well, fifteen years ago tomorrow, but I went into labor fifteen years ago today.  This was our first photo as a family (thanks, Jenn!). After nineteen hours of labor and an unexpected c-section, we finally had him. And we were finally a family. I never believed in love at first sight until I met Jake. Okay, maybe it wasn't at first sight with Jake, but I did fall for him hard and fast. As in a week. That's pretty much 'at first sight.' But, for certain, I loved Riley from the moment I first laid eyes on him. He was so wanted, so anticipated, and so loved. The first grandchild for my parents. The first great-grandchild for my grandparents. The first baby in our circle of friends. So, when he asked for a family dinner with one of his best friends tomorrow, I agreed. When he asked for fifteen courses - during finals week - I talked him down to four courses with two dishes in each course. Here's what he picked.

Garden Planning with Two of The Green Thumbs

Last month, D and other five kids - who call themselves 'The Green Thumbs' - designed, built, and installed two large mist collectors in their school garden as part of their six-week pilot program called LEAG.  If you follow my blog at all, you'll know that I have the polar opposite of a green thumb. Is there such a thing as a black thumb? If so, I have that. But as the follow up for this project... ...the kids are proposing that families adopt a plot or planter box over the summer and take part in the Community Garden. Ummm...remember the black thumb?! Well, I did what I usually do when I am ignorant: (1) I read and, if possible, (2) I sign up for a class. So, today, D, one of the other Green Thumbs, and I drove up to Watsonville to attend the free 'Starting Your Summer Garden' class sponsored by the UC Master Gardeners of Monterey Bay. Carole King presented and led a discussion about everything from worm composting to caging your tomatoes.

The Foodie Edition with Nancy, Ruth, and Evan

Last week I had the chance to attend "The Foodie Edition", a benefit for the Carmel Public Library Foundation. Through work, but not for work, it was nice to be there just for fun. Though, truth be told, I did whip out a notepad and pen because these gals were such a riot and I wanted to be sure to remember some of their comments. The speakers were Nancy, Ruth, and Evan. That's Nancy Silverton, Ruth Reichl, and Evan Kleiman. I jokingly only wrote their first names in the title of the post because there was a point when they joked about some chefs needing only a first name: Alice (Waters) and Wolfgang (Puck), for instance. The format of the event included an hour of wine and mingling, a cooking demonstration, and a panel discussion. I didn't take any photos because (1) I wasn't working and (2) didn't have a press pass or explicit permission to photograph in the venue. That didn't stop many people in the audience from snapping away on their phones, bu

Grilled Ras el Hanout Shrimp with Asparagus #BBQWeek #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Michigan Asparagus  in conjunction with  #BBQweek.  All opinions are my own. Well, that's a wrap on #BBQWeek. But, first, I need to offer many, many thanks to Ellen of   Family Around the Tabl e for organizing this week. These events are fun, but they are also a ton of work for the folks on the back end. Kudos, Ellen. I had a great time and, now, have a lot of recipes for grilling season. As we draw to a close, I wanted to give one last shoutout to one of our sponsors -  Michigan Asparagus  - who is giving one winner two grilling baskets and $50 gift card. Wowza! Enter at the end of this post. You still have time! Fresh asparagus is definitely a harbinger of Spring and Michigan is one of the largest domestic asparagus growers in the United States. Michigan Asparagus is available mid-May through June and is the only hand-snapped harvested asparagus which means more usable asparagus and less waste. Local Michigan far

Queijo Coalho (Brazilian Grilled Cheese) #BBQWeek

Welcome to #BBQWeek's Final Posting Day! What a week it's been. I hope we've inspired you to fire up the grill, serve up some burgers or steaks or chicken and some delicious sides and desserts! Follow #BBQWeek so you don’t miss one delicious recipe. There are more than 20 recipes this week from some amazing bloggers. Our Final Offerings BBQ Bacon Cowboy Burgers from Tip Garden Best Memorial Day Burger from Dad What's 4 Dinner Grilled Meatballs and Spaghetti from A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures Gigi's Baked Beans from Family Around The Table Grilled Chicken Gyros with Tzatziki from Caroline's Cooking Grilled Fruit Cobbler from Jolene's Recipe Journal Grilled Marinated London Broil from Feeding Big Grilled Marinated Tuna with Sesame Rice Steaks and Orange Cucumber Salad from A Day in the Life on the Farm Jerk Chicken from Palatable Pastime Queijo Coalho (Brazilian Grilled Cheese) from Culinary Adventures with Camilla Brazilia

Ras el Hanout-Spiced Lentils and Greens #worksmarter #sharpenyourkitcheniq #Sponsored

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of  KitchenIQ .   All opinions are my own. When one of my contacts at KitchenIQ asked if I wanted to do a post featuring a few of their new kitchen tools, I agreed immediately. I am not a gadgety cook; I really don't have a lot of kitchen appliances. But I have received tools from KitchenIQ before and they are definitely my favorite. The Tools... KitchenIQ kitchen tools are easy to use, easy to clean, and they do what they claim they'll do! Plus, plus, plus. I love them. I received the Grate Ginger Tool , the V-Etched Spice Grater , and the V-Etched Better Zester ! I'm going to do a quick rundown of each of the products, share a recipe that used all of the tools, and - at the end of the post - you'll have a chance to win all three of these tools for yourself. Good luck!!! The Grate Ginger Tool is one of those tools that I never knew I needed...and, now, I'm wondering how I lived without it. I use fres

Edible Enigmas for Beginners #FoodieReads

As we continue on with our May  Foodie Reads Challenge , I picked up  How to Eat a Lobster: And Other Edible Enigmas Explained  by Ashley Blom .* I followed her when she blogged at Quarter Life (Crisis) Cuisine, then she started the blog  Forking Up  last year. We travel in some of the same food blogging circles, so when I saw that she had a book coming out, I ordered it. I figured: How can I resist a book written by a gal who posts  Bacon Pancakes , Danger Scones , or a Tequila Old Fashioned   on her blog?!? I enjoyed the book. It's cute. It's clearly written. It has beautiful illustrations by Lucy Engleman. But I will admit that it's definitely not intended for the experienced eater.  Most of the "Tricky Techniques" we tackled before the boys were ten years old. Topics include... How to Eat Crawfish. Check. How to Eat Raw Oysters. I know I didn't feed him raw oysters back then...but he has since we joined our CSF,  Real Good Fish . Che

Razor Clams a la Vizzini #FoodNFlix

I am  so  excited about this month's  Food'N'Flix  event hosted by my friend Deb over at  Kahakai Kitchen . You can read her invitation:  here . She asked us to watch  The Princess Bride .* It is one of my favorite movies. Ever. I was, admittedly, a little horrified that it came out 30 years ago. Really?!!? But...I did watch it for the first time when I was in high school and I graduated over 25 years ago, so the numbers make sense. Still... On the Screen... Based on the 1973 book by William Golden, the movie version includes an impressive list of actors - Peter Falk, Fred Savage, Cary Elwes, Robin Wright, Chris Sarandon, Mandy Pantinkin, Andre the Giant, Wallace Shawn, Billy Crystal, Carol Kane, and others - who bring mirth and memorable quotes to the screen. Oh, and there's fencing, fighting, kissing, torture, death, true love, giants, pirates, and rodents of unusual size! If you've seen it, what's your favorite quote? If you haven't seen it, you