Monday, June 29, 2009

I'd like to teach the world to cook....

I realized something walking around the store today so many people in this country don't cook really don't cook. It got me thinking ya know when Steve and I go to the store we kind of stick to the perimeter where the whole real foods are we occasionally drift down the aisles for the odd canned vegetable or bag of rice, beans or flour. But on the whole I hope we don't do too badly when it comes to the choices in our shopping cart.
My pantry isn't perfect. I have cake mixes and pre-made cake frosting. There is always a brownie mix or 2 in there also the odd side dish helper. The top shelf has lunch stuff and popcorn more of the junk food things we seem to never eat but that's besides the point. I confess to some pre-packaged convenience food short cuts on occasion!!! However, overall I think it would be fair to say that I don't really cook with that stuff.
I was noticing carts around me at the store tonight with piles of tv dinners stacked like tall buildings cushioned by pillowy potato chip bags on a foundation of diet pop the biggest irony of all... (I do confess an abiding love for pepsi and a stubborn reluctance to even consider its removal or reduction in my a 12 oz can a day really that horrific?? I try not to think about it...I drink like a gallon of water a day lol ok I'm going to stop justifying my horrible behavior now) I couldn't imagine dinner being whatever I could pull out of the fridge/freezer and then microwave into existence or wait whoa some of them even work in a skillet... mmm yummy....
Good REAL food doesn't take more time it doesn't take more money( I promise I'm CHEAP) it doesn't even take a lot of skill... all it takes primarily is just a little thought. The ability to handle a knife and a decent spice cabinet can help you along the way too.

***** BREAKING NEWS*****
This type of cooking doesn't even necessarily require a recipe...
If you have taste buds you're all set!
Retire your microwave. Buy a cutting board did you know those shriveled dried up colored bits in the "flavor pouch" aren't really shriveled up things in real life and they don't have to be glazed in ice either! ( right now I'm trying to remember why we own a microwave?? Popcorn? a placed to store baked goods? ) Meat doesn't come pre-cooked and real chicken doesn't look like that. It makes me sad to think of all the culinary joys and adventures in the world and to see how our society lives and thrives and drives on over salted faked to be cheap pre-processed dehydrated food on a daily basis... I know this rant has been ranted 100 times but still our stores are filled with a new "just add Water" or "microwave for only 90 seconds" package every day and grocery carts seem to be taking them into our homes also....

I'd like to teach the world to cook...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Randomness... because its been awhile...

Random thoughts for the week:

* I wonder if Steve and I will ever get tired of baked sweet potatoes I think we've been eating them like once a week lately....

*I searched high and low for a silly pattern to crochet a stuffed turtle for nephew #3 Asher Levine Southwell who will be born on July 8, 2009 when I finally found a pattern I liked the woman wanted $8 for the pattern so I looked at her picture very carefully and invented my own... Pictures will follow as soon as the sweet squirt is stitched together (the turtle not the baby)

* The veggie soup I made way back whenever probably around the time of my last random post is still stupendously delicious after its long sojourn in the freezer and is especially soothing to the sore throats that are currently visiting the Gobles this week... silly allergies! We hope its allergies is anyone else sick?

* That banana picture reminds me of the 5-6 blackened bananas sitting in my freezer waiting to be delicious banana bread... My friend Jessica said she freezes banana's when they get too soft I adopted this idea and think of you every time I freeze them Jess! :)

* I had some really great chicken salad this weekend when we took my Dad out for Father's day. My Mayo-cautious husband even agreed it was delicious and agreed I could try concocting my own delicious chicken salad!

*I miss the rain! Lord please bring back the rain it was delicious perfect weather the house was cool... Now its too hot to cuddle my husband at night and that makes us sad!

* I saw the most beautiful blog about a loaf of bread complete with a gorgeous picture made me miss the sensation of kneading dough being up to my elbows in it and creating soft pillowy bread warm from the oven with honey drizzled on it... Someday Lord can I stay home and raise my children in the fear and admonition of you and bake bread?

* Speaking of children all these babies popping up everywhere sure makes a girl think about being a mommy... sometimes I cuddle Izaiah and nuzzle his soft little head and wish it was my turn soon... I hear about books that are helpful and things and wonder if maybe I shouldn't start researching and reading up on this stuff... beyond passing decisions about natural labor, doulas and cloth diapers....

*Several crochet projects I've seen recently have required buttons I wish I had my grandma's button collection it'd be so handy... I miss my Grandma more than her buttons tho.

*My birthday is coming up soon and my sweet husband has been putting money away to treat me to a delicious dinner... I think right now its a tie between a fancy dinner at the Bistro Napa or Sushi and dessert at the Chocolate Bar...

*Do I ever talk about anything not related to yarn, food or my Steve?

Monday, June 8, 2009

What Gobles Gobble... Summer Supper

I think after the rains of the past week have past and the gray clouds have parted into Clear blue sky that the time has come to welcome summer! We discovered this recipe in the middle of the cold winter a genius idea Steve had to make Chicken with guacomole... a yummy enough idea til I took it to the next step with this fresh salad... It was a welcome and delicious taste of the summer to come. It was so delicious I decided it would be a great meal to share with friends so I made it for our friends Brad and Kelly once who also loved it... Since Kelly asked for the recipe I figured while I was typing it up I might as well share it here too :)

Mexican grilled chicken with Guacomole and Black Bean and Corn salad.
This will probably serve 4 adults with leftover salad
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1-2 limes, juiced
1 pkg of taco seasoning
1 gallon size ziplock bag
1-2 good pinches of salt

Marinate the chicken breasts in the lime juice, salt and taco seasoning for at least an hour. Of course you can make it a day a ahead if you'd like. Cook the chicken to your preference BBQ it or pan fry etc...

Black Bean and Corn Salad
Mix the following together in a bowl
1 can of rinsed black beans
1 can of corn, drained
1 red bell pepper diced
1 good handfull of chopped fresh cilantro
3-5 green onions, chopped
2-3 limes, juiced
1-2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tsp of cumin
salt and garlic powder to taste the salt is important its what makes everything pop.
This tasting step is important!
You can easily double this just by using 2 cans of beans and corn... Its also very easy and better if made ahead so the flavors can kind of blend :) This also makes a delicious high fiber salsa with the addition of a chopped jalapeno which is optional if you're not a spicy wimp like me :)

Guacomole ( you can buy it pre-made or this is my basic recipe)
2 ripe mashed avocados
the juice of 1/2 lime
garlic powder, to taste
seasoning salt, to taste
pinch or 2 of cumin
1/2 tomato, diced
some fresh chopped cilantro
Stir together and taste for seasoning.

I like to serve the chicken with a spoonfull of guacomole on top but you can do whatever you like. :)

Welcome sunshiney days and bbq dinners swimming pools and popsicles! :)