Monday, May 30, 2011

And the Man at the Back Said "Everyone Attack"

This morning we went down to Casa Grande and had breakfast at Big House Cafe with Scott's mom.  I was disappointed with my florentine omelette, but I think that's because I really wanted to order the corned beef hash but didn't as I felt I needed to behave, gastronomically speaking after a weekend already full of bacon.  The omelette was good, mind you; I just wish I hadn't seen (and sat, staring at) the specials board, on which the chalk words corned beef hash taunted me, in size 72 font.
Scott, on the other hand, was unencumbered by some inner voice telling him to order wisely, and he selected the Barnyard sandwich - a whopper of a meal between a large roll.  The sandwich included eggs, cheese, a breaded pork cutlet, ham, and bacon (I think that's it).  It was so repulsive it was almost pretty:
The side of potatoes (yes, it totally came with a side)
was also slathered in cheese.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Ain't No Thang But A (Cajun Smoked) Chicken Wing

I know - two posts in one day, right?  Today was just one of those delicious meal type days that are worthy of such attention.
After lunching, Scott turned his attention to dinner.  He had wanted to smoke the chicken wings we had in the freezer for some time, and today turned out to be that some time.  So after thawing, he threw on the rub that had also graced the pork butt on Easter (after adding cayenne pepper and cumin to give it that heat he wanted) and loaded the wings into the smoker.
The good thing about wings is that they don't take a great deal of time (unlike the twelve-ish hours that the pork butt took), so by five, dinner was about on the table.

Best BLT Ever

My favorite sandwich has to be the bacon-lettuce-tomato.  It's true that the salty bacon and sweet acidity of the tomato work so well together.
I am often disappointed by BLTs in restaurants - the bacon is rubbery, the lettuce wilted, or the bread soggy.  But at home, I can make everything to my specifications.

Best BLT Ever

  • Two slices (per person) of whole wheat bread made with my friend Christie's recipe
  • As many rashers of bacon from The Pork Shop that you think you can fit in your mouth
  • Thickly sliced heirloom tomato (from my mother-in-law's garden)
  • Green leaf lettuce from our CSA
  • Homemade a├»oli

The bread must be toasted completely (Scott always says that he likes his toast toasty - it needs to be crispy and crunchy all the way through), and the bacon needs to be as crisp as possible.  The lettuce needs to be washed and then thoroughly dried.
I hate mayonnaise.  It's gross - literally gives me the dry heaves.  But thanks to a Facebook post from Hounds in the Kitchen, I mustered up the courage to try a recipe from my favorite, David Lebovitz.  Now I understand why the French dunk their Pommes Frites in the stuff.
We didn't have any Pommes Frites, but we had a few CSA carrots and some crackers with herb cream cheese on the side, and it was a great lunch for a great day.

Saturday, May 28, 2011


This past week has been insane, busy, and insanely busy, so nothing much exciting happened, other than the fact that I discovered more tomatoes on the plant, and I believe that the potato that HRH and I "planted" (it got yucky so I let her throw it in the ground) is actually growing.
I've fallen off the movement and eating well wagons, to so I need to get back up on both of those.  There's really no excuse - I have just been taking the "easy" way out in between work, potty training relapses, and jury duty.
Yep - jury duty.  I have been called to sit, so I'll be doing that for a bit.  I won't be talking about the goings-on (since that's, you know, not allowed), but I will have the opportunity to try some downtown restaurants, so hopefully I can report back on some tasty local joints.
And speaking of tasty local joints, if you are in the East Valley, you may want to give Crackers and Co. a try.  We met some friends who are in town for the weekend there for breakfast this morning, and we were quite impressed.  HRH inhaled 4 rashers of bacon and nearly an entire bowl of fruit; Scott had a chorizo-carnitas skillet, which he said was very tasty, and I had the California eggs benedict.  It was nice to find a local place and spend some time with good friends.
Short post tonight - I'm beat from my busy day and busy week.  Hopefully I'll be much more interesting next post!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Just Peachy!!!

I need to preface this entry by saying that the kerfuffle with Zooey on Monday isn't the reason I have been away from the blog for the week.  It was finals, and I was in a grading frenzy.  As for Devil Dog, who is currently snoozing at my feet, she turned three on Thursday and took her birthday in a barking stride.  Hopefully now that she is officially an adult coonhound, she will settle down, but I have a notion that trash bin diving will always be a hobby of hers.
But she is cute, isn't she?

Snoozing in the sun

Monday, May 16, 2011

What to Do When You Catch Your Dog Eating Out of the Garbage (or, What I Did on Monday Morning) - by, Allison

I had planned to give an update on my garden to let you know that my cantaloupe finally seems to have sprouted and such.  However, I think might offer those of you who read this blog regularly (or at least once or twice) a little Schadenfreude.

Zooey, as a scent hound is wont to do, regularly allows her nose to take charge, and today as I worked, I heard a rustling upstairs that could only be one thing: her noggin inside a bathroom trash can.  If this has ever happened to you, please follow these steps to help ensure your dog's continued health.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


We got potatoes in our CSA share this week, and Scott was all over them.  He announced that he was going to make vichyssoise, as we had also gotten leeks.  So off to the store he went for cream (and deodorant, but that wasn't for the soup), and then he got busy in the kitchen, completely ignoring the giant container of chicken stock that was already in the fridge to thaw a bag from the freezer and trying to burn down the house by broiling some bread with herbed feta (HE herbed it; it came "plain").
I had found a very simple bean salad recipe from Mark Bittman that I had planned to have for lunch, but since Scott had his own lunch while I was out donating blood, we saved it for dinner.  I used chickpeas, my favorite, and green red onions (I mean that they are baby red onions; this isn't some homage to a weird PBS series).  This really was simple, and the beauty of the recipe is that it's insanely versatile, so I can use this again a zillion times with new taste combos.  It's a great excuse to start buying my beans in bulk rather than in cans.
Since we were getting all fancy (I mean, come on - vichyssoise - that word just LOOKS fancy), we told our lemon dealer friend Danielle to invite herself over for dinner, which she did.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Olive You, Mom

"If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?"
                 ~~Milton Berle

When I was about four years old or so, my dad convinced me that the thing my mom wanted most in this world was a pink plastic yard flamingo.  Imagine my excitement in having a dad who would help me obtain this unconventional holy grail of gifts and my near giddiness in being able to offer it to my mom to show my appreciation for everything she had done for me up that point in my short life.
Pinky I bit the dust several years ago, but I made sure my mom wasn't without her requisite dose of 1950's kitsch for long, and Pinky II now resides in her front yard.
Regardless of what else I do for my mom on Mothers' Day through the years (and I feel fortunate that I may still do so), that will always be, in my mind, the best gift I ever gave her.
I have yet to be blessed with a Pinky of my own, but I did receive from HRH some ASU PJ pants (someone with sharp teeth and no impulse control tore a hole in my other ones when she was a puppy) and an ASU running shirt, so I am calling this Mothers' Day a win.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I Like to Move It, Move It

One of the blogs that I follow is Food Wise Nutrition; Autumn is a nutritionist in Seattle and a friend of my dear friend Katie.  This month, she has challenged her followers to make a commitment to move each day. I gladly accepted the challenge, as while I regularly run or walk with Zooey the Devil Dog, there are always nights each week that I'm "too tired," or when Scott gets home "too late."  These are LIES!  I just posted the other day that I haven't done any yoga, even though apparently I want to start including it into my weekly routine more.  Thus, I am viewing Food Wise's Movement Project as an opportunity to make good on my promise to myself.
Today, I dug out two bushes, planted four to replace them, and potted some new rhubarb (I really really really hope that this takes; rhubarb in Arizona is a major gamble, but I love rhubarb pie enough to risk it), not to mention haul in two bags of compost.  Tonight, I took Zooey for a walk, although we ran a little bit when Zooey started going nutters about the black lab that was on its nightly stroll as well.  But hopefully I can run tomorrow.
This week is go time for the cucumbers HRH "helped" me plant; our pumpkin seeds are sprouting, so I've got my fingers crossed we have home grown jack-o-lanterns for Halloween this year.
But I really want to make pickles.

Do you see what I see?????

Pumpkin sprouts!!!!!!
Post-Script (Monday) - I'm sure some people might notice that I didn't mention the major news that happened in Pakistan late last night.  It is not my intent to diminish world events or to imply that my need to start yoga or my garden are the items around which the sun revolves.  That being said, while I am eternally grateful for all the men and women in uniform who protect my freedoms each and every day, I find it difficult to rejoice in the death of a person - even though he was responsible for the deaths of thousands of others.  However, I can rejoice that my life that I treasure is able to continue, basically uninterrupted, and I can further hope and pray that our troops may be able to come home soon.