Saturday, August 24, 2013


This isn't really a post about food in a regular sense.  I'm not posting about what I've cooked, but what's been going on on the mountain the past couple of days.  We had family here yesterday and friends today for a couple of pool parties to get together and hang out with people we don't see often enough.
J and I provided burgers and hot dogs, ice cream cones and juice.  Our guests brought the rest.
What did we learn?
  1. Chocolate milk is the most popular drink for the under 10 set.
  2. Peanut butter and marshmallow fluff whipped together is probably the best fruit dip ever.  
  3. Quinoa is good, no matter how you spell it.
  4. Hot tub lids make great buffet tables
  5. One person's over-bounty from the garden is another person's veggie tray on day 2.
  6. Having a working sink in your kitchen 2 minutes before your guests arrive can make you want to sing.  So can doing dishes in said sink instead of schlepping everything to your laundry sink in the basement.
  7. Telling my mother about how my cousin and I broke my aunt and uncle's TV by dropping it 30 years ago was probably a story that was best saved for now.  
  8. It pays to know a Purdy.
  9. Spending time with extended family is something that needs to happen.
  10. Spending time with friends is priceless.  
Yep.  It's been a great couple of days, and the kitchen is functional!  You hear that?  We're back in business, as soon as we move the kitchen back upstairs.  Planning posts to come, and new recipes.  But for now, we're just going to be happy to have had time to connect with family and friends for a while.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Grilled Steak and Potato Salad

I love making dinner salads.  You know, the ones where you sit down and you can pretend that you're being healthy as the plate has a base of greens.  Actually, there are a couple of salads in Looneyspoons that are that healthy, I just haven't made them yet; other than the fajita salad, which is excellent.
On my way home from Quebec, I wanted a couple of magazines to zone out with on the bus.  While most people would buy People, or US, or something like that, I opted for Canadian Living and Chatelaine.  Frankly, Chatelaine was a bust.  I didn't find the articles appealing nor the recipes worth it.  The Canadian Living, however, was another story.
My mother has had a subscription to Canadian Living for a long time.  I haven't made a lot of their recipes, but those I have made are usually pretty good.  When I saw this salad, I thought it sounded delicious too.
I was right.  And it was perfect for a warm summer night.  Frankly, it would be good on a cool summer night too.  I present to you now from the June 2013 issue of Canadian Living the Grilled Steak and Potato Salad:

Monday, August 12, 2013

Brunch: Ham and Potato Frittata

Being home for the summer, I need to make lunch everyday.  Who thought that was going to happen?  I'd like to be going more meatless, but we do what we can.
While browsing, I read Beth over at Budget Bytes and she'd made a frittata.  Now we all know how well I do with baking eggs, but this looked easy, filling, and simple.  I used her ingredients, but tweaked things slightly to make less.  J and I got 2 meals out of this.  With a salad, it was a perfect lunch.
I present to you now, as inspired by Beth and her yummy things, the Ham and Potato Frittata:

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Totally Unrelated Aside (Except it Involves ME!)

I blog each month in the Pintertest kitchen.  While I make a lot of things from Pinterest, this ensures that once a month, whether I need to or not, I pick something off my ever expanding board of Recipes to Try and make it for ill or for good.
Case in point - the Nutella Swirl Loaf.  It's yummy, but greasy.  I think I may have greased the pan too liberally.  Or it's the 2 sticks of butter.  I'm not planning to say anything about Europe's favourite chocolate hazelnut spread.  So, Nutella good, greasy cake ill for my waistline.  It's not stopping J and I from consuming said loaf.  But I digress.
When going through this month's Linky Party, I came across A Cuppa Kim's Mug Swap.  So naturally, I signed up.  Today, I got my address for sending.  YAY!  I went snooping to learn about my swapper...and she's not a blogger and has her Twitter and Instagram privacy'ed up.  Grrrr. 
No matter.  I'm plotting what to do, and I need to get things ready to go on the 24th. 
So....beyond that if you're reading this, and you have my address for the mug swap, WELCOME!  And I'm looking forward to the reveal in September on the 3rd!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Grilling the Odd: Margherita Pizza

I spent time before the reno pinning recipes I thought would be makeable during the reno - crockpot ideas and lots of grilling ideas.  Somehow, despite my planning we still spent most of the first week eating out because it's easy.
The second week, I made a plan to hopefully stem the tide of money going out of my bank account into restaurant coffers.  Sunday night, I made dinner at home.  That's night one.
I have discovered that my deep freeze is a good height to use as a prep table.  I have also discovered that my basement is a lousy place in which to take pictures.  We're looking forward to having counters again.  But all that aside, this went together quickly and there were minimal trips up and down the stairs before dinner.
J liked this enough that he'll let me make it again with some different toppings.  We'll see what happens in the next few weeks.  I present to you now About a Mom's Grilled Margherita Pizza:

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Planning: August 4 - 9, 2013

We spent most of this past week eating out.  There are a few problems with this.  One, it's wicked expensive.  Two, everything's fried.  I don't want to see fries again for a good long time.  Three, there are few vegetables.  See point Two.  And Four, it's wicked expensive.
As a result, and due to the fact that I have a stove currently and no workmen here until Tuesday, I've come up with a plan that hopefully will incorporate a few more vegetables, a few more meals at home, and a whole lot less fries.  I've pinned a bunch of things recently that I'm hoping to make using the crock pot and the grill.  Here's a round up of what's on the menu on the mountain this week:

We're finding it hard to make it to the basement to put something together when the fridge is in the middle of the activity for the reno.  Broccoli Pesto Pasta, Baked Beans, and leftovers are on the menu.

We will be grilling this week, with a side of grilled zucchini and a warm potato salad, I'm also hoping to make Chicken Taco bowls, and Crockpot Beef Gyros.  I also have decided that I want to try making pizza on the grill!  Wish me luck.

as for dessert, we're working on the Nutella loaf, and I have discovered something at Costco: Laura Secord Chocolate Mousse.  If nothing else, the chocolate will see us through.

Right.  Chocolate.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Pintertest Kitchen: Nutella Swirl Pound Cake

I have no kitchen right now.  The cabinets are gone.  The cat is living in our bedroom with a relocated litter box, food dishes and cat tree so she can be Queen of the neighbourhood.  The floor has been ripped out, and my fridge is in my dining room.  The floor in the dining room will come out later when the living room carpet is ripped out.  Our kitchen designers say the whole process will take about 3 weeks, barring any crazy things.  So far, nothing has been crazy (fingers crossed).  Just a whole lot of inconvenient and miffed feline who is only let out to explore when all the workers who might leave the door open have gone.
I'm BBQing a lot, and washing dishes in my laundry sink.  But I also spent some time baking before this process started so we'd still have sweet treats during the renovations.  One of the things I made was this loaf, which I'd pinned:
Nutella and pound cake in one simple package.  How could this possibly be bad?
I present to you now Sally's Baking Addiction's Nutella Swirl Poundcake: