Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Opening Day

Even though it is snowing again today. Yes, believe it.  We were blessed with a beautiful spring day on Saturday for our Little League Opening Day and Parade.  We're the Durham Bulls this year and have a terrific team of boys (and parents).  You can always tell how the season is going to go based on the float building party and ours was a success.  I love baseball and love that baseball means warmer weather and outdoor cooking.  I am optimistic that the sun will come out tomorrow. So I am planning a grill dinner.  Carne Asada Fajitas using grilled strips of sirloin, grilled onions and grilled peppers.  I have yellow and red so that is what I will use. Fast, fresh and budget friendly goes well with baseball games that usually happen midweek.  This is something I can get cooked and on the table quickly after the game.  Play Ball.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Cupcake central

 It was cupcake central in my kitchen this weekend.  Our church was hosting a Celebration event Saturday and Sunday and I agreed to provide mini cupcakes to 'sweeten' the event. I chose recipes for Vanilla Bean with Vanilla Buttercream from Annie's Eats.  Chocolate with Chocolate Truffle Frosting from my own recipe stash and Snickerdoodle from Martha Stewart.  I didn't use the 7 minute frosting for Snickerdoodle but instead used Buttercream and added a generous amount of cinnamon to the buttercream and topped with a sprinkle of cinnamon and sugar.  They all turned out well and not one was left after the event. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Menu Planning

Tuesday - It is snowing here today.  Yes, really.  So one more pot of Chili is on the cooktop. I am trying new Fire Roasted canned tomatoes I found.  We will see. 
Wednesday - BLT Pasta
Thursday - Roast Chicken and New Potatoes with steamed Broccoli
Friday - Cobb Salads
Sometime Friday I am making 300 mini cupcakes for our Church festival this weekend celebrating our new church building.  Vanilla Bean with Vanilla Frosting and Sprinkles and Chocolate with Pink Strawberry Frosting
Saturday - Truckee Little League Opening Day so let's have Grilled Burgers 
Sunday - Meatloaf, Cheesy Potatoes and Baked Beans (all learned in my Mom's kitchen) recipes to follow

Monday, April 19, 2010

Spring means artichokes

Cut the bottom off to make it flat. Cut and tops off to get rid of the prickly leaves.  Put them in a pot of water about half way up the choke.  I salt, pepper, add Italian seasoning and juice of a lemon.  Throw the lemons in too.  Simmer covered for 45 minutes or until tender.  

Remove from water, drain and serve with garlic aioli.   I like this one - no raw egg in the recipe.  Tear the leaves off, dip and nibble the meat from the tips.  Waiting in the middle is a heart.  Remove the fuzzy choke and dice the heart, dipping in aioli like the leaves.  

The End.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Spring is for Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberries at my market are buy one carton get two free right now.  So I took advantage.  Not only are we eating strawberries on our waffles and as snacks for lunch but there are enough for a great spring dessert.  I adapted this from Better Homes and Gardens red checkered cookbook (you know the one) Strawberry Shortcake recipe.  I don't sweeten my berries just slice and enjoy over the shortcake with a scoop of French Vanilla ice cream and a little milk.  

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup butter, cold, cubed
1 egg
2/3 cup milk

I combine all the ingredients in my food processor and pulse.  Drop by tablespoon full on cookie sheet . Bake at 450 degrees for 15 to 17 minutes.  Cool, slice, top with berries, ice cream, whip cream, milk and enjoy.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Because it is Easter, because it is spring, because I have a huge bag of carrots in my fridge, I made Carrot Cake Cupcakes.  This is one of my favorite recipes. It is from Southern Living and meant for a cake pan but works well as cupcakes too. It is classically filled with grated carrots, nuts, pineapple and coconut.  The cupcake is topped with a generous amount of Cream Cheese Frosting.  Do carrots in a cupcake count as one of your 1/2 cups of fruit/vegetables a day?  I hope so.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Back from the beach

It is spring break here and we took a couple of days and met a couple of other families for a camping trip on the beach in Half Moon Bay.  Spending Easter on the sand is a special treat.  The weather cooperated off and on.  On Saturday, off Sunday, on Monday.  I'll take it.  We played on the sand, flew kites, took a picnic to a surf break, hunted eggs in the tall grass and enjoyed each others company.  The beach recharges my batteries...and adds to my sea glass collection.
Love it.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Crab feed, Castaways and a good Cause

We attended the Rotary Club of Truckee's Annual Crab and Pasta Feed last weekend.  This is a fun event with mounds of fresh Dungeness crab to devour. In addition to the crab feed, the auction to raise money for local non profits and the fellowship of the evening a competition has emerged.  It is a table decorating competition.  Over the past three years the competition has evolved to include themes and costumes.  Say hello to the Castaways of Gilligan's Island.


Mary Ann and the Professor

Four Gilligans

The Howell's and an islander
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