Saturday, October 18, 2014

Roasted Cauliflower

This is from Bon Appetit magazine, Feb 2013. Pretty yummy. I made a smaller batch with half an onion, but I think I would use MORE onion and lots of olive oil, salt and pepper.

Before:



After:







Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Month of Eating Vegetables

I confess. I am a bad vegetable eater. Or rather, I am bad because I am a vegetable non-eater. I was ashamed at thanksgiving dinner when my virtual niece asked me to put some brussels sprouts on her plate (!) and when I gave her a wee spoonful she asked me for a couple more scoops. "I love brussels sprouts" she said, loading her plate with rutabaga and squash and red cabbage. I gave in to my own pressure and put a teaspoon of bs on my plate and actually ate it, but not with much relish.

I don't like many vegetables. Some raw carrots are delicious but cooked? Bleh! Swiss chard looks nice in magazines, but not on my plate. I really do think I have the genetic marker that makes vegetables taste bad BUT. I am a grown-up (well, I look like one) and I have children (teens now) who also don't go in for veg in a big way. My husband says it's his fault because he does the cooking and he just doesn't know what to do with them. We do get vegetables because he puts them in stirfries and soups but we really could stand to pump up the volume. 

So, I introduce to you, The Month of Eating Vegetables. From today (just after Canadian thanksgiving until American thanksgiving I will make a concerted effort to find vegetable recipes that will make them taste good to me. And I will post the results and recipes here. Starting with... basic green beans.

Green Beans With Lemon, Walnuts, and Parsley

Normally we just steam beans but this time of year they are a little past their prime so I turned to my giant orange Bon Appetit Cookbook for the recipe. The results? DELICIOUS! Decadent even. My son w.d. said wow and best beans ever. This recipe is a keeper. 








Sunday, June 30, 2013

School's Out for Summer.....

Well, the first day of summer vacation is being draaaaawwwwwnnnnn out to its inevitable closure with a bit of help from a) friends, and b) wine.  So. Updates. Some of the plants in the last post are still alive. Ha. And some are not. The cream was sour when I poured it in my coffee this morning but my SWEET children went  to the store for fresh cream. How nice is that. And friends have been here until the wee hours. I suppose it's bad policy to post when one's had wine. oh well. here's to summer!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Outside

Today was the first non-rainy day in ages. I didn't have the energy to cut the lawn which is getting fairly deep... but I did have the energy to plant the few flowers I bought last night into my planters on the back stairs. I have a policy of trying never to spend money on flowers so I limited myself to $5 - total came in at just $4.48! I'd much rather divide and share plants and spend my hard-earned cash on wine!

Here are the results of my puttering...
Most of my planters are filled with various sedums that somehow survive the winter in the garage. In late spring I pull them out looking all pale and stringy. Within days they have perked up and turned their lovely pale and deep greens and burgundies. I usually add a few cheap annuals for colour - this year deep purple petunias, lighter purple alyssum and a white lobelia.
The collection on the wall started when two hubcaps appeared out of the melted snowpiles near our driveway one spring. Now anything round (that should be trash!) makes its way onto the wall.

More recycling in the garden...
Yup, it's a toilet tank, but doesn't it look like one of those really expensive ceramic planters? It's filled with chunks of styrofoam packaging to make it light enough to move into the garage in the winter. Note the bits of broken teacup. And a broken teaspoon handle. I don't know.


The toasters are a big hit. My dad gave me the first one (at the bottom). It didn't work but he thought I might like it for decoration. The second one (middle) came from a friend who said "It's to add to your collection." I said, "I don't have a collection." She said, "Now you do." The third was a christmas present for my husband. It made one piece of toast and burst into a tiny flame.

After perking up the planters,  I decided to tackle the back porch. It's a bit neglected. I started with this candle holder which I never use because a) we never hang out on the back porch at night and b) I'm a bit afraid of putting flame next to this obviously tinderboxy porch wall. So, I put some creeping thyme that is overtaking my other garden into these little pots. I hot glued them on so they won't be swept away by a vigorous wind.

You can se the planter above the chair. The bunting was moved from the front porch this spring. I like it here. It gets more flapping action. 

Finally, my favourite putter of the day. On the right is a candle holder that hasn't had candles since I left the glass holders in it over the winter. They filled with water and snow, then froze solid and broke. I've filled these ubiquitous KW teacups with creeping thyme and one morning glory each. They too are hot glued to the candle rack. The wreath has an ingenious hidden bit of dirt in a slice from a juice container. It's tied on at the bottom and filled with the thyme. There's also a wee plastic bag at the upper left with more dirt and thyme. I feel this will likely fail but it looks cute today!


Only 10 more working days until summer vacation. Not that I'm counting. 

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Calypso!

Just received this urgent email from my pal C. She found this at Sally Ann (aka Salvation Army). Note the price tag ($1.00!).

Lovely.




Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Sometimes you can't tune a piano...

I just changed the image to the right of my blog posts yesterday to a photo of our new computer desk. It's a lovely old piano (late 1800s) that can't be tuned anymore (ok. it can be if we replace the strings to the tune of $2600+). We've been debating what to do with it for years and, lacking any woodworking skills, our options seemed limited. Then I thought I might be able to just remove the front panels and somehow store books in it. Having removed the panels to reveal the lovely wood and workings I suddenly had the brainwave - computer table. Add it fit perfectly! I would eventually like to replace the white board over the keys (an old cupboard door that I needed to saw about 1cm off of) with a heavy piece of glass so you could see the keys. The cool thing about the piano desk is that it still plays. You can ping the strings directly, work some of the keys below the board, and even just sneeze (!) to get some lovely out of tune sounds from the piano.


Then today I was perusing Core77, a very interesting design blog, when I saw this!


The post shows how they did it. (My project was WAAAY easier!)


Monday, May 27, 2013

Smell-o-vision

Just for the Aussies who are heading into winter, I present pictures from my Canadian garden as we are deep into spring and soon summer. I wish I could add a scratch-and-sniff option! The scents this week are... delicious!

Fading already, we begin with the lilacs. The scent is gorgeous, so much so that when they first burst into bloom I bury my face in every lilac bush I encounter on my way to work! (Think "grandma's eau de toilette")


Hard on the lilac's heels are the summer phlox (?) a tall weed really, but the scent! My husband thinks its a bit cinammonny.


I could smell spirea all the way home from work today and I was riding my bike! It always takes me back to the yard I grew up in. This one is too close to the house and seems to be affecting the foundation so we may have to move it this year. Hope it survives!


This was Buster's favourite sleeping spot. The flowers don't smell but the leaves are lovely. It's catmint.


And what I always feel is a secret treasure, the lily-of-the-valley. Probably because I'm the only person in Ontario that isn't overrun with it! (Another classic granny perfume)



COMING SOON:
This one is just about to bloom, but the scent is in the leaves - sage! On a hot day, you can smell it as you brush by.  


Can you see the tiny ant on the big ball. It's trying to open the next smelly beauty - peony. I've been babying a few of these for years and finally get enough blooms to bring a couple into the house (after I've given them a good shake to dislodge the many ants!) Another one you just want to stick your face right into...


Finally, two little bouquets from the garden in a couple of milk-glass (probably fake) vases. (And an over-the-top flowered table cloth!)

 Cheers!


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