Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What do you think?

Monday, March 16, 2009


Since I got a plethora of comments on my previous recipes and several “encore”s, I figured I’d do another. I have to please my audience. Admit it, you didn’t even read the recipe…just thought, “Oh nice, a few recipes I could try some day.” and proceeded to skim.

Stake Conference Tuna & Variation

Prep Time: 10 min.

Frozen Peas
Granny Smith Apple
Pita Bread (pockets)

Variation: Cucumbers, Cheddar Cheese, Bread

Mix the drained tuna, mayo, peas, chopped apple, and raisins until correct consistency. I guess if you like celery you could add that too. I never do because I hate it. The apples add the nice crisp crunch needed. Fork into pita bread and devour. One day I wanted to make this, but I didn’t have raisins, apples, or pita bread. To add the crisp crunch, I put 1/4” slices of cucumbers onto a piece of bread, and to substitute the chewy part missing from the lack of raisins, I added some slices of cheese. This sandwich is easier to eat if sliced in half.

N.b: This is called Stake Conference Tuna because when we had Stake Conference in my home stake, some people had to travel 2-3 hours just to get there, and then there were meetings before and after for Youth and Leaders and stuff, so after the main meeting, there was always a huge stake picnic. My family brought this meal every time without fail (at least that I remember). So until I turned 12 stake conference consisted of sitting still on hard chairs (no, we were never on time to get the cushy benches) for 2 hours, and then a quick meal of Tuna & Pita then off to play with all the children from all over the stake on the stage. Once I turned 12, there was a Youth Fireside at 1 where I would proceed to try to sit next to all my friends and/or the current crush. Fun memories.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Salad Recipe

When I cook, I don't usually follow much of a recipe. This is how I learned how to cook: Look in the cupboards, fridge, and pantry and take note of contents. Brainstorm how those contents could be put together to make a meal. Put them together and hope it tastes good. I'm in the habit of doing this when I have company too, and a word to the wise: cook something you know will turn out good when you have company. (Failed recipes with company: Indian Spinach Chicken & Pork chops w/ raspberry vinaigrette, potatoes, carrots, garlic, & green onions.)

Since I’m eating a lot of fruits and veggies for the next 6 weeks, I have to figure out new recipes almost daily. Here are a couple:

Alfredo Noodles with Dino-Trees

Prep./Cook time: 30 min.

Linguini noodles
1 White sauce recipe (will need butter, flour, milk, and salt)
Broccoli & Cauliflower
Meat of some type (I used some left over ground beef, I’m sure chicken would be delicious, too, maybe even more so)

Cook noodles to al dente and meat until done. Cut up broccoli and cauliflower into a big frying pan. Add enough olive oil to keep it from sticking and burning (2-3 T). Add about 1/3 C water and cover. Fry on medium heat. When it seems like long enough for the water to have boiled mostly off (and steamed the veggies a bit), uncover (caution, steam is HOT!) and fry to taste. While all that is cooking make your white sauce (see recipe below, from BHG red checkered cookbook). Serve linguini onto plates and top with meat and veggies, add white sauce to taste.

White Sauce

2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Dash black pepper
1-1/2 cups milk

In a small saucepan melt butter. Stir in flour, salt, and pepper. Stir in milk all at once. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 minute more. Makes 1-1/2 cups sauce.

Caesumber Chicken Salad

Prep. Time: 24 hrs, Cook/Assemble time: 15 min.

Romaine Lettuce
Orange Juice
1 Chicken Breast
Shredded Parmesan Cheese
Cucumber Salad Dressing (I’m sure it’d be good w/ Ranch or Caesar too, but I had cucumber, so I used it

To marinate: Put Chicken breast in a ziplock baggie and pour in about ¾ or 1 C Orange juice in. Seal and stick in bowl in fridge for 24 hours, turning over occasionally. (I started w/ a frozen chicken breast, so I let it marinate until it wasn’t frozen any more plus a few hours. If you start with a thawed chicken breast, you only really have to marinate for 3-5 hours.) To cook/assemble: Cut up chicken into bite sized pieces and fry on medium heat until done all the way through. While frying, wash and spin dry romaine lettuce and tear into slightly larger than 50 Cent piece sized pieces. When the chicken is done, put in a bowl and stick in freezer while you add croutons and cheese to bowl of romaine. When the chicken isn’t hot any more (can be luke-warm, don’t want it to be frozen). Dress to taste and devour. (1 chicken breast will make about 2-3 servings, add other toppings accordingly.)

I ate that salad for lunch today…it was…DELICIOUS! I had my doubts, especially since the cucumber dressing isn’t as good as I imagined it’d be on other salads (It tastes a lot like dill…which reminds me of the taste of pickles, which I can’t stand).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Healthy Month or Two

So at work we have wellness challenges where we can earn money back from insurance for being healthy. There is also a “prize” at the end of the challenge. The health challenge for March and April is to eat more vegetables and fruits. They have a little track shaped chart. The goal is to have 3 servings of fruits or vegetables per day 6 days of the week. In order to eat fruits and vegetables, one has to own fruits and vegetables. So yesterday I went to Sunflower Market and bought a ton of fruits and vegetables…ok, mostly fruits. I got 4 ½ lbs of grapes (red and green), 12 apples (3 granny smith, 3 fuji, 3 jonagold, and 3 some other kind), 4 grapefruits, 1 lb of asparagus (SPARGEL auf Deutsch, fun word), 1 head of romaine lettuce, a huge bunch of bananas, and 3 tomatoes. All for a grand total of $15. I love cheap produce. It’s good produce too. Did I mention I signed Dave up for the challenge as well?—hence the majority of fruit. He ate all 3 of his servings last night for dinner. I started marinating a chicken breast in orange juice so I can cook it up and have chicken salads for lunches with the romaine lettuce, and the croutons I bought for Knoedel on Sunday. Yummy. Can’t wait.

Now that my back is starting to feel better, I started exercising again. (Nothing major, mostly cross training) I reactivated my gym membership and rode one of the stationary bikes for 15 minutes. I felt great, like I could keep going for another 15, but I decided to stop. Good thing I did, because when I got off the bike, my legs yelled at me. My bum bones are bruised from the bike seat today. Good thing I don’t have an office job where I sit in a chair all day…

Friday, March 6, 2009

Deer Assassin

A couple of weeks ago we spent a day just cleaning the house. Dave decided to start tackling our nasty kitchen floor. He even pulled out the fridge and stove. I don’t think that it has been cleaned under there…ever. The brown and white parquet patterned linoleum was black. I’m really glad he did the cleaning of the floor, because I think I would have puked. He found the best thing ever though. There was a photograph of a previous tenant or…someone…taken in the upstairs bedroom under the fridge. It’s classic, see for yourself.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


This is the apartment complex across the street from us. The apartment that has the open window caught on fire today. The guy that lives in the apartment below noticed smoke coming through his light fixtures, felt the ceiling, and it was HOT, so he called the fire department, who told him to get the heck out of there. So he was standing outside in his holey socks. Dave texted me when all the trucks showed up, since he was at home studying for his Series 6 licensing.  I took my lunch a half an hour earlier than I planned, and came and stood around out in the windy Windy WINDY weather. I guess that the guy who lived in the burning apartment didn't make it.

By the time I got home, the firemen were cleaning everything up, and taking care of fire business. They asked us for our Bishop's phone number, and we offered our house for people who need a place to stay. I guess we'll get a call if they need it.

This guy was wearing a blue fire suit, as opposed to all the others, who were in yellow. Dave asked him about it, and it turns out he's just an intern. So he got to stand around and watch like we did.

I don't know how much water they put in there, but quite a bit. I think they hacked up the building a lot with their axes and nifty fire tools.

This is part of the couch that they brought out. That's all they really brought out of the apartment. 

Dave has a really nice camera on his phone, and it'll do panoramas for you. This is a panorama of the fire scene.

As you can see, there were 3 big fire trucks, at least 2 paramedic trucks, a few rescue trucks, 2 cop cars, and a parking cop jeep. They hooked one truck up to the fire hydrant (on right), and then ran a hose from that truck to the next truck (on left), then smaller hoses from that truck into the building. See above.

All in all, quite an eventful lunch break.