Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pineapple Souffle

One of my favorite things about the holiday season, and there are many, is the music! I love Christmas music with all my heart. Will doesn't share this enthusiasm, though I do know he likes the Mariah Carey classic "All I Want For Christmas Is You." Don't tell him I told you.  I'm kidding, he's totally going to read this.

Anyhow, I have my favorite versions of just about every song. For instance, I have a special place in my heart for Barry Manilow's rendition of "Jingle Bells." I can hear the judgment already. Whatevs, Manilow makes my heart go pitter patter. Part of it stems from this Christmas tape my sister had that we listened to religiously during Christmas season. Yes, I said tape.  This was when every car still came with a tape player. We loved that tape.  f you want a laugh, check this out. It gets me every time.

Did you know Justin Bieber has a Christmas album? I previewed it on iTunes for a lark. Normally I'm okay with the Biebs. I'm not a huge fan, but I'll dance to that one song. But this Christmas album is a travesty. I can't even deal. The tonic to this album illness is Michael Buble's Christmas album. In fact, I'm going to Target this week just so I can get the extended version. It's got the vibe I want when I listen to holiday music. I don't like when pop artists do holiday songs; it just sounds weird to me.  I like the old school Rat Pack sound. And Barry Manilow.

Monday, November 28, 2011

A Thanksgiving Recap

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving weekend!  I also hope nobody got pepper sprayed by crazy people...!  What is with the world we live in that somebody would disable another person over a Christmas present?  Doesn't that kind of go against the spirit of Christmas?  Well we're not going to worry about that here.  This blog is a place of love and laughter.  Not pepper spray.  Unless I happen to spray pepper onto a dish that will make you supremely happy.

I know what made my T-giving weekend awesome.  A 34-13 win over our arch-rival, Clemson, gave us the Palmetto Bowl for the third year in a row.  To make it even better, I saw it in person.  Like my own eyes were gazing at the crowd of 80,000+ people and the glowing lights of the scoreboard.  Love love love it.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanksgiving, yo!

Mercy, I went to Wal-mart, the Pig, and Fresh Market.  Everywhere was bustling and busy in preparation for T-Day.  I tried to get everything we'll need to make our dishes, but we'll probably be making a last-minute run to Wally World anyway.  It's just the way the world works, y'know?

Since I like to share, I thought I'd give you a taste of our Thanksgiving menu.  Maybe you'll get some ideas for your own meal!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Spaghetti Squash Gratin

I promised you a recipe for that leftover spaghetti squash, and you're gonna get it.  You're also going to see how I eat when I'm cooking for just myself.  Things rarely make sense, and I really just indulge my cravings.  PB&J with truffle fries?  Why not?  Actually, I haven't done that yet, but now I'm seriously considering it.  Squash gratin and rosemary bread topped with pepperoni, chopped olives, and peppadews?  It's so, so right.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Mediterranean Spaghetti Squash with Crispy Shallots

Last night I went to dinner and a play with my mom and my grandmother.  Let's talk about this food for a sec, k?  I'll confess, I've been thinking about the dish I ordered for a while.  A fried polenta cake topped with shrimp and lobster in a cream sauce.  It was everything I ever wanted.  Georgetown proper has a couple of nicer restaurants, and Portofino's is sort of the local casual upscale Italian joint.  Casual upscale?  What planet am I on?  Whatevs, you can dress up or dress down.  I mean, it's Georgetown.  Let's not get pretentious.  At any rate, I genuinely enjoy their food.  I'd heard about this fried polenta and lobster dish a few months ago but hadn't had occasion to go there.  Of course, I forgot my phone, so I couldn't take a picture.  Bad, foodblogger, bad!  Ugh, enough self-flagellating.  The polenta was crispy and the lobster just plain made me happy.   And well, you don't really have to twist my arm to get me to eat shrimp or cream sauce.

Let me tell you about a dish I do have pictures of.  Do you like spaghetti squash?  Well you should.  It does a darn good job of being better-for-you noodles and soaking up awesome flavors.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Bootleg Thanksgiving

How have I gotten away without talking about Thanksgiving yet?!  It's kind of my favorite holiday.  Well, tied with Christmas for favorite.  See, I love the whole season from Thanksgiving to New Years because there's tons of good food and good cheer.  When the weather gets colder, we remind ourselves to love others and sing songs about playing in the snow.

Thanksgiving is a wonderful day for me.  Think:  Golden brown turkey (baked and/or fried, we have both at our meals), lots of luscious sides, soul-warming desserts, good spirits, good spirits (hard cider anybody?), and the grand-daddy of all parades.  Every year I watch the Macy's parade.  I even tried to watch it in the airport the one year I flew home Thanksgiving morning.

My sister and her little family will be at her mother-in-law's this year, so we had a mini-Thanksgiving last weekend with her father-in-law, Bob, who was also in town.  Um, it was kind of bootleg.  I mean that in the best way possible.  She definitely thought she had a gravy boat, but she didn't.  That's what measuring cups are for, duh!  Also, Rich couldn't find a regular turkey breast at the commissary, so we had a Cajun turkey.  Did I mention it comes with a gravy packet?  Ha!  I will say that I wholly condone the gravy packet if your other option is the powder stuff.  Um, gravy should not start out as a powder.  Just sayin'.

I made these mashed potatoes:

Monday, November 14, 2011

Feta Squares

Do you remember that show Cybill?  Maybe not, but I do.  It's one of those shows I used to watch with my mom when I was little.  It introduced me to Cybill Shepherd and Christine Baranski, who continues to be one of my favorite actresses.  I loved her as the jaded best friend in Cybill and now as a badass lawyer in The Good Wife.  Seriously, her filmography is massive.  And she's done theatre.  So there's that.  I'm totally bringing this up because the TV Guide channel shows reruns of Cybill.  My mom and I also used to watch Murder, She Wrote.  Who doesn't love Angela Lansbury (aka Mrs. Potts from Beauty and the Beast)?!?!  We also watched Murphy Brown and basically any show with heavy topical sarcasm or a criminal procedural.

Sorry I've been a little slack in posting lately.  Between travelling and footballing and hanging with my sister, I lost the energy for photo editing and posting.  Whomp whomp.  But I'm back, and I've got a ton of stuff to share.  Starting with feta squares.  

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Peanut Festival

Y'all, I'm here to give you a full report on our day at the Peanut Festival.  It was a magical day full of fried food and carnival rides.  Okay that's kind of a lie.  Will and I only rode two rides because we're wussies.  The first one we rode went a bit faster than we expected, which completely terrified Will.  The second one was called The Himalaya, and Will almost crushed me with his body weight.  To be fair, I didn't think it was going to be that bad...until I was pinned between him and the seat.  Oops.  A suggestion to fair-goers: Obey the signs that say the bigger person should be on the outside.  They mean it. At one point we thought it was over, but it was just gearing up to go backwards.  So we didn't ride anymore rides after that.

The day was full of food, though.  Our first stop was the Corndog Man of course!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Molasses Spice Cookies and Pumpkin Dip

Confession:  I probably most likely definitely watch too much TV.  No, it doesn't keep me from exercising or doing other things.  But I keep it on constantly as background noise, and I have about 1,000 shows I watch regularly.  Sundays are a big night.  Once Upon A Time, The Walking Dead, Pan Am, and I catch The Good Wife on Hulu the next day.  The Walking Dead is by far my favorite.  I'm way into creepy shows (American Horror Story anyone?!), and zombies totally freak me out.  And last night had potentially the grossest zombie kill of the season.  Gah.  I'm also into Glee and I die for Modern Family.  Modern Family might be my favorite show out of all of them.  We're pretty sure Phil is Will in 10 years.

I feel like I have to say that I like to read, too.  When I read a book, I tend to read it all at once.  I might not finish it in a day, depending on how long it it and what else I have to do, but I'll read for hours at a time.  I think I finished Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in less than 36 hours.  I'm sure other people finished it a lot sooner than I did, but I was in grad school at the time.  Will's mom likes to read too, and there's always a book here that I pick up and read.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cranberry-Cinnamon Goat Cheese Spread

A big congratulations to my dear friends Jeremy and Emily on their precious little boy, Benjamin!  I can't wait to meet the little guy!

I'm super excited for the National Peanut Festival tomorrow.  I'mma get me a corndog and about 15 other fried foods.  Maybe not 15.  But it's a fair, so I have to indulge.  I'm pretty sure it's illegal not to.  Obvi I had to run today to even think about gettin' my fair on tomorrow.  Word.  We might even ride the Scrambler!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Goat Cheese and Pancetta Orecchiette

I hope everyone had a lovely Halloween!  I drove up to Columbia to see my Grady-bear.  He was Darth Grady, Sith Lord.  Yeah, not a pumpkin or a sweet pea or any other vegetable.  Villain from Star Wars.  Totes appropriate.  In any event, I made chili per our Halloween tradition.  Nom.

We had a few trick or treaters and started watching a couple of horror movies.  Like TrollHunter.  Oh yeah.  A Blair Witch-style movie, Norwegian of course, about these college kids finding out trolls are real.  Did you know trolls turn to stone?  Well some explode, but I don't remember specifically a story where trolls turn to stone.  Did you know the Norwegian word for troll is troll?  According to Wikipedia the Scandinavians have trolls on lock.  So there you go, all you wanted to ever hear about trolls.

This pasta is the antithesis of a trolls.  It's creamy, comforting, and incapable of becoming a statue.  It's got goat cheese, pancetta, Parmigiano, and tomatoes that come together in a risotto-style pasta to make your life complete.  Complete, people.