Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanksgiving Menu 2014

Salad
Hearts of Romain 
with Crisp Red Apples, Celery, and Cider Vinaigrette

Main Menu

Spatchcocked Turkey Roasted with Lemon, Sage, and Garlic
with Gilbert Gravy

Linguiça Sausage Stuffing 
with Mushrooms and Caramelized Onions

Sizzliń Corn and Jalapeño Bread 
with Bacon

Sweet Potato Purée 
with Pecan Streusel

Green Beans with Lemon-Butter Bread Crumbs
and Toasted Almonds

Cape Cod Cranberry Compote


Desserts
Lemon Tart

Spiced Pumpkin Layer Cake 
with Cream Cheese Frosting

Honey Rosted Bosc Pears 
with Sticky Toffee Pudding Ice Cream

Monday, November 24, 2014






This year Niegel had run two 5K’s before Thanksgiving. I volunteered for one at the campus and the other was at our town. Both of us decided that could be our tradition before Thanksgiving. We usually plant bulbs after Thanksgiving it was a tradition that we have kept for two years. 

This year we decided that we would make an attempt to run at least one 5K. If we can’t run we will attempt to walk. In addition to this we make a donation to the local food pantry. 

November is a month that we are conscious to be thankful to simple things around us including our own family members. I enjoy taking part in these activities with my children. 


Little Nicolette has been asking me to buy her sneakers so she could run a with her brother. I promised her that we are going to participate the FrostyK.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Wide Rice Noodles







I remember when I was a kid I would ask my mother to make noodles. It was such a big preparation, because it needed vegetables to thinly cut and cook the meat. Getting all the ingredients together was a such a big task. I can recall to this day I was so eager to help her to make this dish because it was one of my favorite; which my mother prepared. No one to this day was able to make this lovely dish for me, but I am not complaining glad that I can cook. 

I decide to make this one pot meal to my children. The feedback is not so great but I know they liked it. My oldest really liked this because it includes his favorite meat and fish. I have make my own twists to this but still stick to the main old recipe which was handed me to by my mom. I knew how to make this by watching and helping her. 

I feel like I always make this extra because it takes a long time to prep. 

Ingredients:
1 leek white and green part
1/4 of white cabbage
2 carrots thinly sliced as matchsticks
1 medium white onion
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 inch piece of ginger
1 ripe tomato diced
choice of your meat chicken/pork/beef thinly sliced drizzled with soy sauce and extra sauce for cooking
shrimp coated with soy sauce
egg omelet cut into stripes
salted fish cut into thin small piece for frying (salted cod works fine)
1 pkt of wide rice noodles
Oil for frying and cooking
sesame oil
Chili oil 

Add two tablespoons of oil to a big wok and fry the salted cod and place aside. Add beef with soy sauce to the pan and cook until  brown and turn over to cook the other side. Once this is cooked move to another bowl. Cook shrimp  and set a side. Basically cook meats and the omelet and set a side. To the same pan add two more tablespoons of cooking oil and brown the ginger and garlic mixture. To this add the carrots, cabbage, and leeks white and the green part. Cook the vegetables until they are wilted then add all the cooked meat including the omelet. Do not add salted fried fish at this point. Mix them well and add the noodles. At this point drizzle some soy, sesame, and chili oil to the mixture and add the salted fried fish and serve hot.








Sunday, November 9, 2014

Planting Garlic


I skipped planting garlic last year for no apparent reason. I knew I was disappointed that the first year when I planted them I did not get any garlic scapes. This is the reason number one I did not plant them last year. Garlic scapes are simply beautiful and elegant. I would arrange them as flower arrangement because for me they are so much full of character. I use to buy them from the farmers market when I was a resident in the state of VA. 

So this year, I decided to go to town with panting garlic. I bought few bulbs from the store and ordered few from an online seed company. They came from west coast so I do have my doubts on them. We will see how well they are going to do in this east coast climate. 


I am planting five varieties this year including a hard neck which is bound to give to garlic scapes. The varieties include Elephant Garlic, Regular soft neck garlic, Harry’s Italian Late, Rosewoods, Broad Leaf Czech soft neck.  I will be panting them soon. We have dedicated a raise bed only for garlic this year. I am very keen on Elephant Garlic, I don't know for what I might use it yet. The store kind wont produce any scapes for sure I know this from practice, but I am eager to see what will happen to the elephant garlic will it produce any scape, or not? The other kinds are from a certified organic farm which gives some informations about its characters. Have to wail till mid June to find the results. I might not have to buy garlic from the grocery store who knows… 

Monday, November 3, 2014

 


Above is a picture of our garden before we decided to pull all our green tomatoes. Yes, with some help before everything freezers we thought it was a good idea to pull our tomato plants and add them to the compost. The result, I ended up with so many green tomatoes. Again I have not make fried green tomatoes. Because I have been making salsas and chutneys. 

First I made a batch of green tomato chutney then salsa and then chutney again. That is exactly how I finished all our green tomatoes. One reason not to have fried green tomatoes. I have not yet, open any of my chutneys. Mainly I think it needs some curing time to get all the flavors to blend in.

That being said we had our first snow showers this past weekend, and our chicken did layed eggs on that day. I think we have two ladies on the clock laying eggs for us. Yeah!!! For the Rhode Island Reds they are the best layers. 


Back to green tomatoes, This years salsa has some extra heat from habanero chillies and jalapeños. I have been using the left overs to add heat to curries and sambols we make constantly to keep us warm. 

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pear Vanilla Jam...





It is the season for pears, apples, pumpkins, and in few months oranges. I remember couple of weeks back we had too many pears in our fruit bowl and some were getting bruised. Pears are one of my favorite fruit next to figs. Yes, I love figs but I don't get to enjoy them a much. Mainly I have not found a good reliable source to get good figs to enjoy. I have not found them in huge quantities to jam them yet. I am being hopeful that one day I might. 

I decided to jam my batch of pears. We love it. I followed a recipe from “Food in Jars” which I have come to love very much. It was a great recipe amazingly I had everything I needed at my finger tips. That is a one reason to can. Second reason I have become extremely sensitive to throwing food away. I enjoy donating to the local food pantry whenever I can. I am big on donating during Thanksgiving month which I get to do a lot. I have notice that I use all my produce before going to the grocery store more often. 


I know Marisa, the canning queen is working on a, more of a smooth textured jam on pears. But I do like the texture in this and the combination of pears and vanilla, it is almost equal to heaven, Yes, it is that good. I will be baking more homemade wheat breads this winter to spread this delicious jam.