Here We Go Again….

 

This past Saturday night on the Hallmark channel there was a movie called A CHRISTMAS MELODY. It stars Mariah Carey. Why am I telling you this???? It was filmed in my hometown of Wyoming. The restaurant/diner in the film is actually the pastry shop I grew up going to and the place with my favorite Smiley face cookies. I always go there after the dentist cleans my teeth!

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The snow in the pics below is fake…thank goodness for that since there was snow on the ground in these pics in September/October. And the house in it was a Wyoming house on Wyoming Avenue.

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Refrigerator Salad

 

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This is when everything in the refrigerator or as I like to call it…the frig… that CAN go in a salad does!

 

In this case…

Erin’s Refrigerator Salad Recipe

Lettuce

Bacon

Hard-boiled egg

Tomato

Bacon

Pepperoni (leftover from cousin Lynnie)

Avocado

Onion

Figs

Raisins

Shaved Parmesan

 

Tossed in Olive Oil, a Squeeze of fresh lemon, salt and pepper

 

My dear sweet friend Carolyn had a 65th birthday and her sweet friends Jo and Lynn planned the surprise and it went off without a hitch.

She really looks like a fairy princess in her crown.

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She was so surprised!!!

 

My mom gets SAVEUR emails and recipes and she sent this one to me to try and I could and literally did eat this one with a spoon. I loved it and it is healthy!

 

BEET DIP WITH TAHINI

 

1 lb. beets

½ c. tahini

3 T. lemon juice

2 garlic cloves

3 ice cubes

Salt and pepper to taste

1 T. olive oil

A small handful of toasted pine nuts

 

Directions

Slice your beets and place on a cookie sheet with olive oil

Cook at 400 for 10 minutes each side or until cooked to desire consistency

While the beets cook, toss a small handful of pine nuts in a skillet and cook till they brown a very tiny bit. Pull off heat and toss in Cuisinart.

Add roasted beets and remaining ingredients.

Blend.

Serve.

Enjoy

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I don’t know how I ended up with this Jacques Pepin recipe, but I tried it and liked it. This is it from beginning to end of preparation.

 

 

Jacques Pepin eggs (article clip from SAVEUR)

Jack Pepin eggs

Sautéed Mushroom, tomato, Poached egg, Parmesan on top

I tossed sliced onions and chopped garlic, mushrooms in a pan with butter and olive oil. I tend to do both butter and olive oil because the combo works well together and it doesn’t dry out as fast as one or the other alone. Not sure this makes sense, but try it and you will get it. Then separately I poached an egg.

On the bottom of my dish, I put the sautéed mushrooms. Then sliced tomato, then poached egg and then Parmesan on top. I liked it! Easy, healthy and good!

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I guess I’m fascinated with this layering phenomenon.

 

Here’s an alteration to the previous dish.

 

Roasted sweet potatoes on the bottom of the bowl.

Sausage sliced up.

Poached eggs

Hollandaise sauce

Whoever said eating gluten-free is always a hardship…didn’t eat this!

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Multi-colored tomatoes are such a great, healthy low calorie snack. I created a dip with yogurt and various spices, beau monde, or dill and it makes a low-calorie yummy snack.

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My friend JoJo and I went to Burlington Flea Market. The last of the season. LOVE it!!! We stopped at a new joint in Northside for a burger. It is called Tickle Pickle and it is fitting because it will tickle you. It was a really yummy burger! I highly recommend it!! We ate out back in the garden. Garden eating is so rare in Cincy and so great!!!

Since, I am not eating bread they wrapped mine in lettuce.

 

 

My cousin Pam had these beautiful wooden bowls when we were up in Canada and she told me she had stripped and refinished them. I decided I wanted to tackle my favorite childhood salad bowl that my parents used. It looks like it fought in a war and lost….

 

 

 

Not sure I did much better and hats off to cousin Pam…that was a lot of flipping work…

 

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I dropped it and broke off a piece after all that hard work so now it has an architectural dip in the edge….

 

My cousins and I did a Fall road trip to Madison Indiana to see the spectacular architecture. Did you know that Madison is in the top 10 cities in this country for their architecture? Some of the old houses aren’t bad either….

 

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There are even multiple Chihuly’s hanging in the visitor center in Madison.

Chihuly

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And an awesome old, candy, fountain shop that echoes back in time….

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And a covered bridge…..

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After Madison, we drove to Nashville, IN., which is a really cute little town…the leaves were in full peak and it was a gorgeous, fun family day! Did I tell you, I love my family?

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Shrimp in Ginger and Hoisin

½ lb. shrimp

Handful of sliced onions

1 garlic clove

Olive oil and butter

1 t. ginger

1-2 T. hoisin sauce

 

I cooked the onions and garlic in salt, pepper and ginger till onions were browning a little. Tossed in shrimp till they turned pink and curled. Then added hoisin.

 

This is so easy and so delicious!!!

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I had a Halloween party. My friend Bill Feinberg, the fabulously talented Sculptor loaned me his Magritte for the party. This particular Magritte looked like he belonged at a Halloween party.

Bill’s Magritte

 

Then I lit candles, candelabras and placed them on my balcony. Placed two pots of chocolate fondue in the middle. Had blankets for folks if they got cold…Miss Mary even wore my grandmother’s mink…

Everyone brought something to dip in chocolate and we had a celebration….nice evening on the balcony.

My friend L and I went to a Halloween parade where they lined the streets with luminaries. SO PRETTY! We sat along the road and watched. We were the only ones watching….apparently it is a participation parade ONLY. Next year, we will walk.

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Look at this yard’s Halloween decorations. And realize the cats in the yard are each over 6ft. long!!!

 

 

When my cousin Lynnie was here she bought me a pumpkin. I have roasted pumpin seeds before but never a pumpkin.

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I decided to give it a whirl and then use it to make a whole bunch of pumpkin dishes, because NO secret. I love pumpkin!

Well, this pumpkin was massive! I was psyched to get a lot of pumpkin out of it, but apparently…this is why folks prefer to cook with baby pumpkins because this big sucker had little to no flavor. Yes, men…size is NOT everything!

I read why pumpkin was good for me, you, and us while I was hunting down Paleo Pumpkin recipes….Now, I can’t find it…oh well….pumpkin is good for you….trust me on this one!

First Pumpkin Recipe

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Clean those suckers as well as you can!

Toss in a bowl of olive oil, sea salt and pepper

Lay flat on a cookie sheet

Bake @ 400 for roughly 5 minutes or until they start to brown

Stir.

Bake more if desired.

 

Yogurt Topped with Pumpkin Seeds, Apricots, Almonds, Chocolate Bits

I tossed ALL of those items on a ½ c. of yogurt and ate it.

YUM! Sweet and salt makes me smile every time!

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Pumpkin Paleo Cookie Dough

INGREDIENTS:
Almonds (pure- with no oil or salt)
Pumpkin
Ripe Banana
Allspice
Cinnamon
Coconut Butter
Unsweetened coconut flakes

OPTIONAL:

Dark chocolate chips

~~~~~~~~~

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Grind two handfuls of almonds in a food processor.
  2. Add one ripe banana and 1/2 a 15oz can of pure pumpkin (or I tried my fresh roasted pumpkin). Blend.
  3. Add cinnamon and allspice to taste.
    (I like a lot!)
  4. One tablespoon of softened butter. And 1 tablespoon of unsweetened coconut.

Gently stir in 2 tablespoons of dark chocolate chips.

At the time, I thought it was okay but the banana was over powering. I think I would do MUCH less banana or none at all, but not sure I would try this again! But it is an interesting concept…maybe you will like it better than I did.

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When I was a child my mom would periodically make this and I loved the sauce topping but I wasn’t crazy about the spaghetti squash and now I know why. When I was a child she cooked it in the microwave in a shallow dish of water. This is not the way to prepare it. THIS IS…..

SPAGHETTI SQUASH WITH A RED MEAT SAUCE

Ingredients

1 spaghetti squash

1 garlic clove

½ small onion, sliced

Olive oil and butter

Ground beef

1 can of tomato sauce

1 T. rosemary

1 T. oregano

1 T. parsley

1 T. thyme

 

Directions:

Cut that spaghetti IN HALF. It is hard as HELL to cut these things. Be prepared for some tough work!

Butter the inside and outside of the squash with your fingers.

Sprinkle salt. Inside and out.

Place face down on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 375 for 35 minutes or until soft.

While it bakes…

In a saucepan…add, onions, garlic, olive oil and butter. Sautee.

Break up beef and cook with onions and garlic.

I add the spices here and cook it all together.

Then I add tomato sauce. Taste. Add more spices as needed. Equal parts of ALL spices or as you like them.

Let simmer on low heat.

When spaghetti squash is finished. It is easy to scoop it out of the half shells.

Place in bowl. Cover with spaghetti squash mixture.

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I now love, crave this dish and have made it a handful of times.

The butter brings out a sweet, delicious flavor in the squash that you could eat it alone.

I have also eaten it with pesto on it!

I had made so much spaghetti squash that I experimented. I tried it with my homemade tomato sauce (recipe above) with chunks of avocado in it.

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It really can be used like pasta and anything I would put on pasta, I would put on spaghetti squash.

I think is incredibly clever. ACORN cookies. Take a Nutter Butter cookie and on one end attach a chocolate bit and on the other a Hershey kiss. I guess you could melt the bottom with an electronic match enough to get it to stick to the cookie.

Acorn Cookies

Below: This dish looks awful but it was quite tasty. I sautéed scallions, garlic, mushrooms, and broccoli in a skillet, then I added chicken, ginger and hoisin and cooked it in my Wok. It was very good. The picture does not do it justice.

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I took some rotisserie chicken, cut it up, spread some pesto on it and then topped it with prosciutto. I thought it was quite good.

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Enjoy the easy and yummy eats!!!

Until we meet again…

Enjoy! Eat, travel, laugh…often….

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One thought on “Here We Go Again….

  1. Another exciting chapter! I marvel at the recipes you provide,such a variety of foods, you certainly do eat healthy. Although you may want to rethink the bit about eating Smiley face cookies after the dentist cleans your teeth I regret missing your chocolate party, but I’m happy our friend Trouble was able to make it. There are a lot of interesting places in and around Cincinnati, and you do not miss any of them, good for you! I did not realize Chihuly pieces were on display in Indiana, thanks for the tip, I’ll have to check them out. Oklahoma City Museum has a permanent exhibition of Chihuly hangings and floor pieces, not to be missed if you are in the area. Thanks for an interesting blog!

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