Monthly Archives: January 2015

Friday Food Round-Up!

So much to workshop this week, so little time.  Except actually we have a lot of time.

First off, Marcus was out of town for an evening – we were supposed to go to Two Harbors together to watch one of my best girlfriends compete in the Beargrease Sled Dog Half-Marathon.  I stayed home sick, he went up north to be with The People.  On another night, he had a fraternity alumni function.  On both nights, I made oven fries which I 100% did not take a photo of.  I had no appetite, but they seemed slightly more interesting to me than straight toast.  So there’s that.

Also, in the middle of all of the oven fry-making, I discovered that our oven isn’t heating properly.  I cannot tell if the temperature sensor is broken, the heat element is broken, or what specifically is going wrong.  Bless my husband, he informed me that we have some sort of service plan through CenterPoint Energy and so they will send a person out next week to look at it (and hopefully fix it!) for free.  On the other hand, I just researched the cost to replace our stove and the cost isn’t heinous (read: about $500) so if that’s what we end up having to do, we’ll do it.

Monday – Garden Pie

Once I realized that Marcus would not be home in time for dinner, I needed a Plan B that would leave me with some leftovers for the week (and maybe a belated bite to eat for my husband!).  This seemed filling and healthy-ish with the vegetables.  The half avocado on the side doesn’t really do anything for the presentation but I was trying to eat calories so this seemed like the most appropriate choice at the time.

Wednesday – Mustard Milanese from The Smitten Kitchen


See you guys?  I was not kidding.  We made this two weeks in a row!  And it was just as good the second time around!  Marcus told me that he felt like we should take a week off next week but I’m not even sure anymore.

We had an arugula disaster – it wilted in the container before we could eat it (organic) so we ended up using the last head of romaine in the fridge.  No problem at all.

Thursday – Chilaquiles in Black Bean Salsa from The Homsick Texan’s Family Table with Guacamole


You Guys.  I looked back on the blog and realized that we had not made this meal since November.  That is like…two months ago.  Which is mind blowing because it was so delicious and so easy.  We will have to action this one again soon.

Butterscotch Pudding Confessions


Last week, The Pioneer Woman posted a recipe for Butterscotch Pudding.  I don’t know why I read that post and was compelled to act.  I rarely read full posts from her anymore and I never put pudding on our grocery list.  But apparently it spoke to my soul on some level.  So I made pudding and that was good and Marcus was sort of confused because it was like 8:00 PM and I was whisking away.  I had never made from-scratch pudding before so that was a mildly exciting challenge in the way that combining six ingredients can be and I was proud of myself.

Related/unrelated: the pudding tasted like manna from the heavens even though I am positive that by all other standards, it was mediocre at best.  I think I may have scalded the milk a bit.  (oops)

Anyway, yesterday I was once again compelled to Make Pudding and as you all know, I was quick to heed that call.  I actually had to run to the store to buy more milk and more cornstarch but it didn’t really matter because pudding was on the way.  This time, I used a pot instead of a pan and the result was even more delightful, if that is possible.  Would it be even better if I were to use whole milk/heavy cream?  Most assuredly yes, but the only thing we ever have in the house is some version of low-fat.  This is something to aspire to for next time.

An Old Grocery List

My parents are continuing to purge and pack their house as they prepare for The Big Move.  As this process continues, they keep discovering the things that they kept from when we were little pups. If you can name it, they have probably unearthed it.  Like this treasure of a grocery list written by yours truly.

Grocery List

Stocking the pantry was a passion, even then.  In all seriousness, whenever Grandma Boots came to take care of us, grocery shopping was always an activity because I personally found it to be The Most Fun Ever.  Mom would come home from her job, and she would find another bag of groceries we didn’t actually need.

I’m not entirely sure what the Sissymilk was – I think that may have meant Lactaid Milk because when I was younger I had an uncomfortable lactose intolerance that has since diminished.  This may have something to do with the fact that I don’t drink full glasses of milk any longer.  I like to see that I balanced this need with the need for a brick of sharp cheddar cheese – always a good choice.  I am also reliably informed that we were NOT allowed to have Gushers (but apparently we were allowed to have Snickers bars?) and that is how and why they made their way onto the list.  Grandmothers are clearly the best enablers.

Running Again


Last week I got the Go Ahead to actually exercise again (AKA really raise my heart rate and stretch my incision) and that was wonderful.

Which is not to say that the two weeks of rest were totally terrible.  It was (admittedly) a good break for my joints.  I  power walked each day and that was sort of a good thing and sort of ponderous.  Generally speaking, I like power walking – it’s a nice way to break-up my workouts throughout the week because you can’t run every day.  Allegedly it puts you in a heart rate zone that is fat burning, but I can’t really confirm or deny that since I don’t actually have a heart rate monitor.  But after 14 days, it was sort of like, enough was enough.

On the other hand, it was a great reminder that we don’t always get to choose what sort of exercise we get to do.  We’re not always in shape to run.  We don’t always have the upper body strength to do push-ups.  It’s like they say in yoga – I am working with the body I have today, not the body that I had yesterday, and not the body that I hope to have tomorrow.

I know that I shared my worries about gaining weight while I wasn’t running.  On the contrary, I lost weight.  Who could have guessed.  I ate the same amount of food I usually eat and just didn’t worry about it and that was that.  There were a few nights where I went out to eat and I definitely enjoyed those meals, but on the same hand, I also tried to make sure that I didn’t overdo it.  As we all know, one treat here and there won’t make a difference but an all-treat lifestyle definitely will.

I think that every runner’s greatest fear is that when they’re able to start running again, they won’t be able to.  Like either their body will have completely forgotten how, or they won’t be able to run a full mile, or it just won’t feel like it’s supposed to.  Good news: it feels like it’s supposed to AND I can run a full mile (or three).  And so I’m back into a routine.


I just want the record to show that I had some really grandiose plans for this weekend, even though they got completely railroaded.

Last week I nursed a progressively worsening cold with The Worst Sore Throat Ever that finally turned into all-out violent illness on Friday night.  Based on what I’ve now Googled about “the flu,” I am pretty comfortable saying that I probably have that.

I knew I was doing well when I went to my parents’ for breakfast today and my mother said, Oh sweetie, you don’t look good.  She was not wrong.  I have looked better healthier.

Most truthfully, I spent the majority of Saturday sleeping and after approximately 2.5 hours of activity today, I had to spend the rest of the day in bed.  What I learned is that The Devil Wears Prada is still great and that Blended is an awesomely bad Adam Sandler-Drew Barrymore movie.  Also worthwhile: The SAG Red Carpet on E!  Thank God the mani-cam is alive and well.


What I’ve Been Reading

I feel like I’ve been just inundated with good books lately.  Or I have a highly functioning reserves list at the library.  When I did a final count of the books I read in 2014, I think I read…53?  I don’t necessarily have a book per week goal for 2015, but it is sort of nice to know how quickly I am moving through them.  Of these four, I would say they were all really excellent, but also all very different.

Us by David Nicholls


Yes Please by Amy Poehler

Yes Please

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Big Little Lies

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Station Eleven

Friday Food Round-Up!

This week we sort of ate salad, twice!  Which is sort of astonishing considering that a month ago, we weren’t eating any dinner salads, ever.  It’s a new regime.

Also, as I flipped through the photos on my phone to find the ones I wanted to post, I realized that we cooked way more this week than I had originally thought.

Saturday – Channa Masala with Rice, Broccoli and Trader Joe’s Garlic Naan


I was like…sort of over-tired and over-hungry (AKA Hangry) when I was making this but it was nice to be able to declare a date night-in and know exactly what to make immediately.

Sunday – Carne Guisada from The Homesick Texan with Cilantro-Lime Rice


With this recipe, we give thanks to Past Kat who wrote *Cook a minimum of 3 hours* in the cookbook so I would know that the lower end of the time scale (two hours) was not acceptable.  Three hours was the perfect amount.  It was a tender, savory dish instead and cilantro-lime rice was the perfect base for the dish.

Monday – Shrimp Creole and Caesar Salad


Once again, Jillian let us commandeer her kitchen for the sole purpose of making shrimp.  She is a saint for real.  I contributed by bringing with a salad kit when she declared that she did not have any vegetables on hand.  If you’re feeling judgmental, please remember that caesar salad kits are the best salads of earth.

Tuesday – Mustard Milanese from The Smitten Kitchen


Holy cow you guys.  This was so good.  So good that Marcus was immediately fussed that there were No Leftovers (I only made two pieces of chicken) and I was astonished.  I am also truly trying to repent for the fact that we have had this cookbook for like two years and have only just tried this dinner for the first time now!  There is a 95% – 100% chance that we will be making this for dinner again next week.

Thursday – Grilled Thai Steak Salad from Dinner: The Playbook


What is true about this salad: there are so, so, so many vegetables.  Also, beef marinated in soy sauce and brown sugar and lime juice is good 100% of the time.