Second-child syndrome

It was Otis’s birthday last week and I completely let it go by without mentioning it here. So…happy belated birthday, Otie!

greyhound

Yes, that’s a band-aid on his ear. He tangled with a thorn bush on an afternoon walk last week and, to hear Gil tell it, the whole thing looked like a horror show with blood everywhere, even on Rufus. At least one tiny bandage took care of everything.

greyhound

“No, really, I’ll be fine…SIGH.”

greyhound

If you haven’t heard, April is Adopt a Greyhound month. I’m clearly biased, but I think they’re just incredible animals; I don’t think we’ll ever not have one cockroached at the foot of our bed. If you think you might like to rescue a former racer (and are in NJ), I highly recommend Greyhound Friends of New Jersey — they’ve been a wonderful resource.

Napistry

The boys stayed with friends while we were away last week, and I don’t think they’ve forgiven us yet. They’ve been sulky and disinterested since Gil picked them up Friday afternoon, but at least they’re sleeping well and will deign to accept treats from our backstabbing hands.

Food post coming once this Dayquil fog lifts, but for now here are pictures of Rufus and Otis doing what they do best.

greyhound

greyhound

more pictures after the jump

Continue reading “Napistry”

Holiday Treats, Part the First

Hi, everyone. For the second year in a row, I’m afraid my schedule won’t allow for an annual Advent Calendar. (For honestly annual Advent Calendars past, see the 2007 & 2008 installments.) Part of the craziness is just my day job, which always astounds me with its busy-ness — you’d think I’d get used to holiday madness after working for a clothing retailer for 10 years, wouldn’t you? — but also

< < < < BIG ANNOUNCEMENT > > > >

I have a photo assignment! I’ll be shooting photos for a cookbook (not my own) starting next weekend!!!! It’s really just a dream come true, as clichéd and silly as that sounds, especially because I’ve toyed with giving up on this blog so many times. But without it I certainly never would have learned enough about photography to even consider doing this for a living. (Just putting it out there, universe…)

Anyway, instead of the Advent Calendar, I’m hoping to squeeze in a few posts on easy-to-make treats that might be nice for the holiday season. These little chocolate & pomegranate nibbles were inspired by something I saw in a comments section somewhere, but I just can’t remember the site. (If they look familiar, please leave a comment and I’ll give credit where it’s due.) Just melt chocolate in a double boiler, add pomegranate arils to achieve a chunky consistency, spoon onto a waxed paper-lined baking sheet and top with more arils, then chill until ready to serve. The juicy, tart arils really are a delicious foil to the smooth, bittersweet chocolate (or chocolate of your choice). I used only the two ingredients that were suggested, but I’d imagine they’d be delicious with the addition of chopped nuts, warm spices or a little liqueur.

And a little housecleaning:
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I didn’t make latkes this year for my husband because we’d much rather eat McDonald’s fries than any fried potato that comes out of my kitchen, but we did get the dogs to dress up for another portrait session. (One of the really, truly annual things on this blog. 2009 edition. 2008 edition.) Poor guys.

Happy Hanukkah!

not thrilled with this Hanukkah thing
Otis, rakish

Will there be treats?
Rufus, dubious

Stay tuned for Christmas photos next week.

They call me “Tater Soup”

Potage Parmentier

I found myself at home mid-week trying to sleep off a sinus infection, but got bored with all of that lying about after a while. (This development is disturbing to me, since I used to be quite happy lazing the day away, watching trashy TV and napping. When did I turn into my dad, needing a project to keep me happy and productive?!) So I did what I always do; I escaped to the kitchen. Still groggy and hungover-ish from Nyquil, I wasn’t up for a full-blown meal, but a simple soup was something I could handle and Potage Parmentier fit the bill perfectly. It’s the easiest thing in the world to make and any additions to the potato and leek base amount to a “why not?” soup.

Should I add celery root? Why not?
How about some apple? Why not?
Maybe a whole head of roasted garlic? Hell, yeah! I mean…why not?

potato & leek soup with celery root, apple & roasted garlic

The soup left me with a small batch of potato and apple peels, which I hated to see go to waste, so I munched on the apple peels while the soup simmered, and turned the potato peels into a nutrient-filled version of fries…simply stir fried in a little bit of olive oil until golden brown, then tossed with salt & pepper.

Waste not, want not.

They’re really amazing drizzled with truffle oil, or better yet, melted truffle butter. But this time I just ate them plain, with a glass of iced tea. Perfection.

Potato peel fries, close-up

The boys were very supportive of my earlier decision to nap extensively, but couldn’t agree to end the day in a productive manner.

Rufus & Otis, doing what they do best.

Some spring cleaning

Hello, and welcome to Spring!

We had CRAZYGOOD weather this weekend, which finally gave me the kick in the pants I needed to cook/take pictures again. Those winter doldrums are no joke, and my whole existence turned into a daily grind just to make it through. But here I am on the other side, and no worse for wear!

So here you go — a little spring cleaning from the past month or so, and a wrap-up of recent goings-on in our neck of the woods.


Pasta e ceci from Rachael Eats. We had this weekly for a spell and while I love it beyond any other soup I made over the winter, I’m looking forward to something less filling.


Shirley Corriher’s Touch of Grace biscuits with butter & fig jam. Made a damned fine breakfast, but not as good as scrambled eggs and morels will be in a few weeks.


French “peasant” beets from Food52.


He really wanted my attention.

More pictures after the jump.

Continue reading “Some spring cleaning”

Loungey

It’s been a pretty low-key weekend around here. I treated Gil to a birthday dinner at Marea Saturday night, but apart from that wonderful (fantastic! amazing! delightful!) experience, we’ve done a lot of lounging. (Which has been wonderful, etc. in itself, only in sweats, and with football.)

Ordinarily, we don’t let the guys on the furniture, but Otis adopted the fainting couch early on and really…how could we say no?

Ru, on the other hand, wouldn’t dream of setting paw to furniture (while we’re home), but prefers to use Otis as a pillow.

So…food. After such an exceptional dinner, I could barely consider cooking today and didn’t have the heart to attempt anything challenging. What would be the point? But still in need of sustenance as lunchtime rolled around, I made a vegetarian chili loosely based on Heidi’s Pierce Street Chili, adapting it to use ingredients already in my pantry. This turned out to be the perfect dish for our loungey weekend. I highly recommend the original recipe; it was probably the best vegetarian chili I’ve ever made.

Hope you all had a great weekend and managed to stay warm!