Showing posts from January, 2012

On Our Menu: January 30 - February 5

Last week I tried two recipes and they both turned out pretty good. (Follow the highlighted text for the recipes.)

First up was Mushroom & Pappardelle Soup with Gremolata. I gave this recipe 3 stars out of 4. The soup is light but full of interesting flavors. I couldn't find pappardelle noodles in my GIANT supermarket so I used egg noodles instead. Since I like mushrooms I used 8 oz. of cremini (baby bellas) instead of the recommend 4oz. Also, instead of serving the gremolata on top of the soup, I just mixed it into the soup at the end.

The second recipe I tried was Leek & Lemon Linguine. This pasta dish was delicious! Very lemony. I used 12oz. of fettuccine and there was still plenty of sauce and flavor to cover the additional noodles. 

Here's what's on our menu this week:

On Our Menu: January 23 - 29

I've been having a lot of luck lately with new recipes. Last week I made Cashew Chicken. I was a little skeptical about the sauce. Sherry and balsamic vinegar in an Asian dish? But I had faith in the recipe and it worked! This dish was delicious. I served it atop basmati rice.
Second up was Mushroom Parmesan - grilled portobellos that are then topped with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese. I had to give this recipe a try after hearing Lorelei rave about it. We really loved it but it didn't make much. I could only fit 4 portobellos in my grill pan at one time so that's how many I made. I think if I make it again I will grill two batches of mushrooms because they are that good. This would be great served with garlic bread. Although, the Popeye Bread from Great Harvest Bread Co. was pretty great too.
Pesto Pizza - No recipe here but I did try something different thanks to a suggestion from Amy. Normally I top our pesto pizzas with ham and mushrooms. Amy recommended chicken a…

One Year Ago

One year ago, after days of anxiously waiting, our local animal shelter called and told us we were cleared to adopt a 9-month old border collie named Buster. That afternoon, we happily drove him to his new home in the country. OUR home. 

I won't lie or sugarcoat it, the first week was a nightmare. After being in the shelter for a month, Buster was on a totally different schedule than us. Every single night I had to get up to let him out twice around 11PM and 2AM. And it was winter. And freezing cold outside. He also had a hard time communicating with us that he had to go out during the day so he had numerous accidents in the house. Worried about more accidents, I was letting him out every two hours or so. We also had problems with him chasing cars down our country road. Oh yes, my blood pressure was sky high. But, in no time at all, Buster adjusted to our lives and made himself right at home.

During the past year he's had his fair share of bumps and bruises. 

He got bit on the ch…

Hurricane Hunters - REALLY?!!

I just finished the book Eyewall by H.W. "Buzz" Bernard about a Category 5 hurricane that slams into St. Simons Island, Georgia. The fictitious story was an okay read but what really intrigued me was the part of the book about Hurricane Hunters - people who actually fly INTO a hurricane to gather important weather data. I had no idea that people really do this. I get nervous during flights when there's a little bit of turbulence. Can you imagine how much you would get tossed around in a hurricane?!! Brave, brave, brave men and women! 

Here's a little video I found about Hurricane Hunters:

On Our Menu: January 16 - 22

Last week I made dish that I had hoped would be delicious comfort food but it wasn't. The Mac-and-Cheese-Style Cauliflower wasn't cheesy enough for my Wisconsin taste buds. The cheese sauce tasted "off" and was very runny. 

Next up was Pork-and-Cheese Arepas with Tangy Cabbage Slaw. These turned out amazing and the presentation was beautiful. I changed the recipe just a tad. Instead of using pork as the filling, I used 4oz. of chorizo and a can of black beans. 

The third new recipe I tried last week was Oven-Barbecued Asian Chicken. We really like the unique taste of the asian sauce. If I make it again, I won't put the chopped scallions on top of the chicken at the end. The strong onions took away from the other complex flavors.

This is what's on our menu this week:

Mason Jar Notepad Giveaway WINNER!

And the lucky winner of the mason jar notepads is:

You Can Call Me Jane!
Congratulations! Thank you all for sharing your cool Etsy finds. I enjoyed visiting some new shops and I hope to have a few more giveaways from my shop kejeara during the year.


This is usually what November looks like, not January!

A lot of people are happy that we haven't gotten any snow but not me. I love to snowshoe and that's how I stay in shape in winter. There's a storm in the forecast for tomorrow. I have my fingers crossed that it dumps enough white stuff to play in.

Last chance! You have until 2:00PM Central Time today to enter the giveaway for my mason jar notepads! 

On Our Menu: January 9 - 15

Reminder: You still have time to enter the giveaway for my mason jar notepads!

I tried 6 new recipes last week and some of them were really great! Follow the highlighted text to get the recipes.

This Green Couscous & Shrimp recipe was delicious. A few notes:
- I didn't have fresh basil so I used 1 Tbsp. dried instead. The "dressing" turned out great and was very lemony. Perfect with shrimp, in my opinion.
- I didn't use anchovies and the recipe didn't need them.
- For the "white beans" I used Great Northern Beans which I think add a cheesy taste to dishes. Yum!
- I mixed all of the "dressing" and shrimp into the couscous instead of serving it on top. Less fuss that way.
- The recipe says it serves 4. Christian and I ate it ALL between the two of us. Either we're pigs or their serving size is very small...

Another great recipe that I tried (and one of my new favorites!) was Rainbow Stir-fry from the December 2011 issue of Vegetarian Times. Sorr…

Mason Jar Notepad Giveaway!

Starting up a vintage and handmade goods online stop has been a goal of mine for quite some time. Over the summer I scoured thrift stores and rummage sales and slowly started accumulating a nice collection of goods. Then in November I launched my Etsy store kejeara

The shop is off to a great start; I've already had 16 sales! Over the next year I would like to add more handmade goods to my shop such as jewelry. One handmade item that's for sale right now is my set of 3 Mason jar notepads.

I love blue mason jars! Each sheet of the notepad is printed with an exact size image of a quart size mason jar.

The 3 notepads are bundled together and topped and tied with fabric and twine - just like a real jar.

In celebration of launching my Etsy shop I'm giving away one set of 3 notepads. Your pick, either a red or green fabric topper.

To enter, leave a comment on this post and include a link to an item you found on Etsy that you absolutely love. (No items from my shop, please.) I love t…

On Our Menu: January 3 - 8

Happy New Year! I had a nice long, 4-day weekend. On Friday I spent the day spinning wool at the Copper Llama. On Saturday Christian, the dogs and I went for a hike because we still don't have enough snow for snowshoeing! Then Saturday night we played Cranium and Pictionary with family to ring in the New Year. We stayed up until 1:00AM which is pretty good for us; we usually go to bed around 8:30/9:00! Sunday was spent sleeping in, watching movies and football. Then yesterday I worked on getting a ton of new things ready to list in my Etsy shop. 

Last week I was going to make a Shiitake & Noodle Hot & Sour Soup but I made an amateur mistake and didn't read through the recipe ahead of time. About two hours before dinner I pulled the recipe out and realized that the soup was supposed to be simmering in the slow cooker all day. Oops. I guess I'll try again this week.