Monday, February 28, 2011

February roundup

I’m feeling extra-glad to be saying goodbye to February this year; my fingers have been itching to turn that calendar page for days now. I’m not applying for a mortgage or solo parenting, but we have had another five snow days (now I know why we have no spring break on the schedule), several out-of-town visitors, a thaw that took temperatures up near 70, a couple of birthdays, and to finish things off, head colds complete with hacking coughs for 2/3 of the RL household.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Blackberry-apple butter

I mentioned this concoction in a couple of posts in the (northern) autumn, but I’ve been making it so much over the past few months that I thought it deserved its own entry. The original idea wasn’t mine; I came across it on someone else’s blog, but have never been able to find it since. So, if you’re out there, mom/food blogger who posted about this sometime last September, thanks for sharing your concept and rhapsodizing about the beautiful magenta color of the finished product. I don’t know if my recipe bears much resemblance to yours, but if it does, all credit goes to you, wherever you are.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Brown rice

Certain foods have something of a stigma attached to them in my house. For example, DP, as a child of Baby Boomers, was exposed to all sorts of groovy 70s food experimentation that completely passed by me, a child of an immigrant/ Depression/WWII household. Thus, while I was helping can tomatoes and roll out homemade pasta, DP was trying out tofu and brown rice. He seems to have been scarred by the experience: the very mention of either of those things still makes him shudder.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Caving in

This is what caving in to the holiday-industrial complex looks like.

I’ve never had much use for Valentine’s Day; the whole idea of mandatory expressions of love and affection just annoys me. Plus it mainly seems to end up making people feel bad: single people feel bad about not being in a relationship, while people in relationships are made to feel that their tokens of esteem are deficient somehow—the wrong kind of (overpriced) dinner out, the insufficiently pricey/showy bouquet of flowers, box of chocolates, or shiny trinket.

Who needs the stress?

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Tomato soup

I don’t really have anything clever to say about this soup, but that’s kind of appropriate. Because this soup is a great recipe to have on hand when you’re out of clever ideas, or energy, or patience, or time, or fresh vegetables.

All of these are excellent reasons why this is a staple in my Friday-night dinner rotation.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Pear pie

Look at that title, and ask yourself: have you ever seen those two words together before? (I’m pretty sure I haven’t.) And if not, why not?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Superlative snacking

I can hardly begin to quantify the number of things I learned about cultural diversity and human nature during my years of living overseas, but I must also confess that many of the most memorable lessons are less than profound. Prominent among these is my recollection of the first time I went to the movies (or should I say the cinema) in England. Having bought my ticket, I went to the concession stand and requested popcorn.

“Salt or sweet?” inquired the helpful person standing behind the counter.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Fancy schmancy

Even with a habit as well established as Friday Pizza Night, there’s room for innovation. Especially with something as adaptable as pizza, which is amenable to pretty much whatever you can think (within reason) to put on it. And well worth doing when you’ve got a guest coming, who might a) appreciate the extra bit of effort involved in having two different kinds of pizza on offer, and b) be more likely than DP and Miss B to branch out and try something that sounds a bit more sophisticated--dare I say fancy?--than the standard weekly offering of pepperoni/salami/sausage topped with mozzarella.

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