Saturday, November 29, 2008

No More Messing Around

I will not have saggy diaper style wrapping jobs this year. There will be crisp corners. There will be no piecing in. My presents will not be frumpy, well at least the wrapping paper application won't be. If you aren't using a Carpenter's Square you aren't trying.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving Prep

I really wanted to have a bunch of pics of all the tasty food I made, but when you are only one person you can't really shoot and cook at the same time. So you will have to take my word for it. It was all delicious. I do have this pic of the turkey cooking at my grandma's. I come from a long line of people afraid of food born illness. You can never have enough thermometers.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Thanksgiving Prep

So you are looking at $7.00 of waste. Lindt you are dead to me. I really don't think that milk chocolate needs barley malt extract. I haven't made a gluten mistake like this in a while. I am usually pretty careful about label checking. I guess I was under the impression that Lindt was a better chocolate, therefore they wouldn't resort to adding unnecessary ingredients. Jez, even the walmart chocolate chips are GF. Fortunately I have some Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips in the fridge so I won't have to run to the store. Hopefully using the chips won't totally jack up my milk chocolate ice cream (recipe from The Perfect Scoop). Oh who am I kidding, I will probably stop at the store and see if I can get my hands on some Ghirardelli squares.

Thanksgiving Prep

FYI people, buy your pineapples at Kroger. They are a penny cheaper and much more fragrant than the ones at Walmart. Learn from my mistakes. Although, now there will be twice as much of this on Thursday. Kroger pineapple on the left.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mmmm Tasty

I usually take note of the recent searches on epicurious. Sometimes it is fun to laugh at people who search for "FoodNetwork chef Sandra Lee" on epicurious. Today I saw something even more frightening than Chef Sandra Lee. Dude I just wanted some chocolate cake, now I have lost my appetite. Thanks epicurious. Click to enlarge...probably not the best use of that phrase...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Thanksgiving Prep

Today the Spanish Chorizo arrived! I plan on making this stuffing from November 2008 Gourmet. The cornbread is naturally gluten free, so that is very fun. In Peoria I could only find Mexican Chorizo, which is not cured and needs cooked like Italian sausage. Spanish Chorizo is akin to pepperoni or summer sausage. I ordered it from Amazon. If anyone in Peoria knows where I can get Spanish Chorizo locally, I would love to hear about it in the comments. It would save me 7 bucks. There are quite a few recipes that I have run across that call for it. Since it was the holidays, and Mom's first GF Thanksgiving I splurged for the real deal, but it would be nice to be able to get it locally in the future.
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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Something Else I Love

I love getting flowers. I know it is wasteful. I know they die in a week. I don't care; I love it. I usually get flowers twice a year, for my birthday and Christmas from my mom. Thanks to a surprise delivery earlier this week I am on track to get flowers 3 times this year!

My parents' computer had a virus and needed to be wiped clean. No biggie, my dad really only uses it to surf the net. My mom is very computer illiterate and only wants to use the computer to print things for her scrapbook projects. Well after the wipe clean we went to install her Scrapbook CD and it had gone missing. My aunt sent an updated version of the program, but it needed some Microsoft file to run. So I talked my mom through downloading it. It took almost 2 hours (only 7 minutes to actually download; she can't type). But it was okay, I had my patience hat on. Then she goes to start the new scrapbook program and it needs another Microsoft file. No biggie, she has the hang of it now; we will get it. Don't be bummed out mom. Ummmm wait, the estimate to download the new file for dial up, almost 11 hours. Ouch, she is sad that she wasted my time. I am sad she doesn't have her old scrapbook CD, because really she would have to learn how to do everything over. I am sure version 16 is a lot different than version 2. It was terrible. So I after I hung up with her I got on Ebay and bought the old version and had it shipped to her as a surprise. Turns out she ordered me flowers. We both felt so bad we bought each other presents :) The card says, "If the accounting thing doesn't work out, you can teach senior citizens computer skills..."

Friday, November 14, 2008

GF Pizza Crust

This is my favorite version of gf pizza crust. It makes 3 servings of thin crust. It makes a tastey thicker crust too, but I press it out pretty thin to get more servings in these lean economic times ;) The recipe is based on this one at Epicurious. I do not like chickpea flour. To me, it tastes like metal. I can taste it on things even after they have been washed. I can smell it in the sink after the water has been drained. Sure it is all probably in my head, but I can't handle it. The idea for replacing the chickpea flour with Whey Protein Isolate is from this post. The idea is that chickpea is a high protein flour so you should replace it with a high protein substitute. I use whole milk in my gluten free baking. I like to think that the extra fat helps. Really, recipes converted to gluten free start off behind the eight ball. So any extra help they can get, I try to give. Also really important in getting a good crust is a pizza stone. I got mine right around the time I switched to gluten free cookery. It is fabulous, even if you aren't gluten free, get one. I keep mine in the oven all the time. I cook everything on it, either in a regular pan or directly on the stone. On to the recipe.

3/8 cup tapioca flour
2/8 cup white rice flour
2T + 2t Whey Protein Isolate
2T + 2t sorghum flour
.5 teaspoon xanthum gum
.5 teaspoon salt
1t Italian seasoning
1/4 cup whole milk
2T water
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1 large egg white
1 T olive oil
2/8 cup flax meal
parchment paper

Heat up the pizza stone in a 500 degree oven. Sift the first 7 dry ingredients together in the bowl of your electric mixer. Add 1T of olive oil and 1 egg white to the dry ingredients. Combine the water, milk, sugar and yeast together (liquids at 110 degrees) and let it bubble for a couple of minutes before putting it in the mixing bowl too. Beat for about 4 minutes. Add in the 2/8 cup of flax meal and beat another 2 minutes. Turn the oven down to 425 degrees. Turn the batter out on to the parchment. Use a wet spatula or wet finger tips to press out thinly. I work on a parchment sheet that is the size of a quarter sheet pan. I spread the batter within an inch of the edges. Place the parchment papered crust directly on the stone and bake for about 5 min until lightly browned. Pull it out and top it as desired. Stick it back in the oven for a couple more minutes. The pizza in the pic is Gorgonzola, cream cheese, caramelized onion, and bacon and it rocked my face off.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Ms. PH has gifted me some bling. How fun and exciting is that? Well it would be more fun if Kreativ was spelled properly, but hey that isn't Ms. PH's fault and she has the good sense to be annoyed by it :)

So, apparently, here are the rules:

(1) List six things that make you happy
(2) Pass the award on to 6 more kreativ bloggers
(3) Link back to the person who gave you the award
(4) Link to the people you are passing it on to and leave them a comment to let them know.
(5) Request scantily clad photos of your blogger friends of the opposite sex.

So Six things that make me happy, can do.

When the numbers 10 and 27 make an appearance together, as in the date of my birth. Gas pumped equals 27.10. Glance at the clock and it is 10:27. My current address involves those digits, how serendipitous is that? My employee number is 1028, it makes me sad, so close.

Madison, WI in general makes me happy. I could make a list of things about Madison that I love. But if I have to choose one, I will go with the view when I come in to town on the beltway and cross over the water. Only 5 minutes to Aimers and all the fun Madison has to offer.

Singing along loudly to Chris Pureka's music in the car. I am not a music person. I don't know jack about music. I don't really care about music. Aimers made some CDs for me for background noise at work. Those CDs included 3 of Chris's songs and I kept playing them over and over. I didn't even really realize they were all by the same person at first. They just got in my head and I never got sick of them. 3 months later, still not sick of the semi-twangy angsty goodness.

I love putzing around in the kitchen. I wish I had more people to cook for. And I wish the people who I do cook for were more adventurous. Mom's inability to eat gluten is way less annoying than her refusal of seafood, dark chocolate, and meat with bones.

My sisters make me happy. Bear and Tottie are both very funny people and we have that whole shared experiences thing linking us together. Even if little Tottie wishes she wasn't linked to us most of the time.

My bed makes me happy. I have one of those feather bed things, down pillows and 2 heavy down comforters. I am almost smothered to death every night. I love it. You know sometimes having sensory issues is a biatch and sometimes it works out just fine :)

I will link to my two blogger buddies.

Little Morning Glory

Mandi's Musings

Oh Puppy

Me: So I talked to Tottie today. She wants a new black or brown purse for Christmas, Maia chewed hers.

Bear: Oh that Maia.

Me: So we know two Maia stories and they both involve destruction of property.

Bear: Yeah I wonder what of Mom's she is going to chew up at Christmas.

Me: I was thinking about that; I hope it is those ugly ass end tables. I might just rub some peanut butter on the legs. Oh bad Maia, you are a naughty doggie, hahaha.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Bad Baby Names File

Overheard at work.

A: This is my new nephew, his name is Lincoln. That is his parents' favorite president, hahaha. They just really like him a lot.

Me in my head: Their favorite president, really? In order to have a favorite president they have to know the name of more than one. And even if I give them the benefit of the doubt, what the hell is wrong with Abraham? They just picked Lincoln because it is cool and trendy just like all the other morons out there who name their kid Lincoln. Quit trying to give a reason other than the truth, that they are soooo unique just like everyone else. Well at least little Lincoln is a boy and not a girl.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Inside Out Enchilada Suizas

So last Sunday I made a pork butt for company. Consequently I had pounds of leftover pork. I was pondering what to do with all my pork. I was considering just being lazy and eating it with a little bbq sauce, possibly slapping it on a pizza crust. When it came to me, Enchiladas Suizas!

One of my favorite local restaurants is Jalapenos. I usually get the Enchiladas Suizas. Basically cheese enchiladas topped with shredded pork and green sauce. I love pork. I love cheese. Enchiladas Suizas is divine. And because the planets were in alignment, I also happen to have enchilada verde sauce and jack cheese waiting to be used up in the fridge!

If I have any GF readers out there, I don't know if Jalapenos can accommodate special requests. I am not GF out of the house and my mother isn't super sensitive and risks it at Mexican places. So if you are "glutened" very easily be sure to ask! Most of the servers speak English pretty well and are very nice (I usually go to the one in the Metro Center).

Inside Out Enchilada Suizas
4 corn tortillas
4 oz shredded pork
1/2 cup verde sauce
1 oz shredded jack cheese
oil for frying

Fry your tortillas for 15 seconds and then blot them off. I haven't tried it yet, but microwaving them in a damp paper towel is supposed to achieve the same results. It just makes the tortilla more pliable and not so raw tasting. Into the tortilla goes 1 oz of pork and 1/8 oz of cheese. Put 2TB of the sauce in the bottom of a 5.5 x 7.5 glass baking dish. Lay the 4 enchiladas
in the dish and cover with the rest of the sauce. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Bake for 10 minutes at 400 degrees. The edges get crispy, which I like. You could cover with foil if that isn't your thing.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I Voted

Voting was interesting. There was a 45 minute wait at 6pm in ye old north Peoria, but I had my patient hat on. It really chapped my ass that there was no flier containing neutral language for the constitutional convention. I will be filling out this form. Just to add insult to injury, a poll worker announced, "The first 4 pages is about changing the constitution, so if you already know what you want you can save some time." Ummm no, it isn't voting to change the constitution. It is just so aggravating; nothing in this state is going to change until we limit the number of years someone can hold a leadership position (speaker, president, minority leader, etc) and change the gerrymandered districts. Krupa/Gordon, who the hell really cares? It doesn't matter; a trained monkey can go and be told how to vote by party leadership. That's the system we have now, only a change to the constitution will fix that. Step One, convene a constitution convention.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Office Funny

FYI if you would like Brinks to deliver your deposits to the bank you need to clear it ahead of time with the Bank (so they can charge you for the convince, naturally). If you don't, the bank won't take the money. So your bags of money are stuck in the Brinks' truck, perpetually looping the Bank's parking lot.