Monday, February 9, 2009

a mid-winter walk

A walk Marc, our dogs (Chocolate labs named Sula and Duffy) and I went on this past weekend. We often go here in the summer but I think it's just as pretty in the winter.

Icy creek water not a problem for these too. Splish splash!

I love this picture. This is Duffy he's 10 month old and is big goofy pup with zero grace or coordination.

They like to find the biggest stick possible to drag around with them, really only small trees will do.
Sula's duck to try and prevent her from dragging giant sticks around and taking us out at the knees every 2 seconds.
A lovely day full of sunshine and happy dogs.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

big bowls of comfort

Comfort food usually comes in bowls and this week all I wanted was big bowls of it! There is something very comforting about bowls the way they feel when held, the warmth they give hands when their contents are hot and steamy. There is something almost primordial about them and I just can imagine that cave men (and women) sat around fires with bowls of warm dinosaur soup in their hands. This was one of those weeks where I was trying to use up stuff I already had, food was cooked by memory and feel with what I had on hand, tasting and adding as I went along. This is my favorite type of cooking although I love finding and trying new recipes and I have a vast cook book collection to prove it although I suspect I like the pictures and ideas more then anything else, it's nice to feel like an crazy chemist in the kitchen! Most of the time they turn out great but sometimes a gruel slop like thing comes out and it is usually when I have added to many ingredients, simple is usually better. This is most of this weeks fare.

Carrot and coriander soup with scones.

Leek and potato soup

A big bowl of cherries

Chicken wings BBQ and Franks red hot served with garlic bread.

Chorizo and bacon hash served with mash potatoes.
The worlds best mash potatoes, I use a food mill to mash them and then add lashing of butter and milk as well as salt and pepper. The texture the food mill gives the potatoes is smooth and creamy. I could literally eat this whole bowl! Homemade chicken strips with warm potato salad.
Turkey pot pie.
Vanilla ice cream.
Vanilla Rice pudding
Little lemon puddings!
It sure was a yummy week, tonight I'm having grill cheese sandwiches not in a bowl but very comforting nonetheless. February makes me want to wrap myself in warm blankets with a bowl of something warm in my hands.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

new york, new island

This is my new kitchen island that my Dad(a man of so many talents) made for me. He finished it a while ago and it took me ages to paint it and put the top on but finally it's done. I found these wall decals at Jysk, and I think they are fab. They had Rome and London cityscape as well, but I settled on New York. The doors still don't have handles but I think I'm going to wait till we redo the kitchen before I decided on that. The island is on wheels so it can be moved when needed and I think it will work really well for serving large groups "Buffet Style", I'll put all the dishes on the island and everyone can just grab a plate and circle around.

It has 6 inch overhanging for stools to slide underneath . Hopefully I'll be able to find some to go with the cityscape.

Now both of us can be found leaning on the island top with coffee in hand, typing away on the laptop or having a chat. It nice to be able to stand across from each other with the island in between snacking, chatting and drinking, as one of us preps some food. It makes it feel more like the heart of the home, a place where everyone wants to be.It has definitely added some much needed counter space in our tiny kitchen.

I'm so pleased with how this turned out and now I have a New York island.