Archive | October, 2011

Soup Season

29 Oct

It’s soup season.  Thus far I have tackled chicken chili, cauliflower soup, and now butternut squash soup, taken from the ever-so dependable Joy of Cooking.  With Halloween in the air and snow on the ground, this was the perfect meal.

Step 1: Roast

Step 2: Saute

Step 3: Mix

Step 4: Blend

Step 5: Toast

Step 6: Garnish

Step 7: Serve

“First Frost”

29 Oct


First, we had an earthquake.  Next, we got a hurricane.  Now, we get 2-4 inches of snow in October.  Record setting.  My memory of Halloween is being too hot in my bunny costume to even continue asking for candy.  The fur was just too much.  Not this year.  I think I’ll try to pull out that old costume.



Can’t Slow Down Hurtin’ Cowgirls

23 Oct

1 Avett Brothers concert

2 colds

3 home cities

4 days

5 corn chowders and enchiladas

6 miles of hiking

7(,000) feet high

8 fresh chilis

9(0) minute massages

10 shades of margarita

To Do: NYC #2

16 Oct

2.  Food Truck Rally (Grand Army Plaza)

It was hard to settle on what to eat after a run through Prospect Park, but we landed on delicious dumplings (I got pork/green onions and Jam got chicken/thai basil).  We got all natural slushes (raspberry/tea and ginger/papaya) and an ice cream sandwich for dessert (potato chip/skor cookie and salted caramel ice cream).  Next I will try: Mexicue and Kimche Taco.

To Do: NYC #1

15 Oct

Must.  Keep.  List.

There is so much to do here.  I’m sure to brain fart it all away when someone comes to visit.  So I shall use the oldest trick in the book and keep a list.

1. Cocktail on the roof of the Met at sundown.

Will trade ride for pancake.

15 Oct

Back in High School, I used to pick up one of my friends for school.  Once a month, I’d get there a little early and her mom would serve us Apple Cinnamon Pancakes for breakfast.  I guarantee I ran harder, made better grades on my tests, and was more enjoyable to be around on those days.  I’d go home and try to cook these pancakes for my own family – fruitlessly chopping apples until I was blue in the face.  Alas, I always ended up with fluffy pancakes and a layer of apple chunks along the bottom.  Not the same at all.  One day I asked her what her secret was (I also did this after having some delicious pizza on her house which turned out to be a DiGiorno cheese pizza with her own fresh toppings!).  She said that instead of chopping the apples, to grate them.  And now I share the same secret with you.  You’ll end up with amazingly rich, delicious, and smooth cinnamon apple pancakes for your lazy fall Saturday mornings.

1 cup pancake mix and 1 cup water (or whatever your mix calls for)

2 apples (grated)



powdered sugar

1. Grate the apples.  This is really the only trick to the deliciousness.

2. Mix the pancake mixin’s together, add the grated apple, and stir in some cinnamon.  I like to use Penzey’s Vietnamese Cinnamon.

3.  Spoon some onto the griddle.  Flip when the edges bubble.

4.  When done, serve with the rest of the Saturday morning greats – Irish butter, orange juice, bacon, and strong coffee.  Top the pancakes with powdered sugar.

All Ears on Deck: Friends of Fall

12 Oct

One of our faves, Crooked Still, not only recently came out with a 7 song EP, Friends of Fall, but also came to our neighborhood to play.  The band had more energy than shows we’ve seen in the past and turns out the lead singer now lives in our neighborhood as well.  Best part of the show?  When they did their own version of Paul Simon, my quintessential NYC song-writer.

Senator Burr Cooks Chili

11 Oct

Well, that’s not exactly true.  I can’t confirm if he does or doesn’t.  But I know I have a recipe in my recipe box that thinks it came from him.  A dear friend of mine passed this recipe along when she was working in his office.  I believe it came from a co-worker, but it has been forever named “White Chili from Senator Burr’s Office” and it will forever remind me of my days in Washington, DC.  And it satisfies Jam’s constant cilantro desires.

Heat 1 T vegetable oil in a dutch oven (I love my blue Le Crueset) over medium heat.  Cook 2 medium onions (chopped) and 2 garlic cloves (finely chopped) until tender.

Stir in 3 cups chicken broth, 2 T chopped fresh cilantro, 2 T lime juice, 1 t cumin, 1/2 t oregano leaves, 1/4 t Tabasco, 1/4 t salt, 1 can whole shoepeg corn, 1 can butter beans (drained/rinsed), 1 can great norther beans (drained/rinsed) and bring to a boil.  Reduce and let simmer for 20 minutes.

Add 2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast and allow to heat through.

Top with green onions, jalapenos, shredded cheese, sour cream, or whatever you fancy. Serve with cornbread or tortilla chips and a Sauvignon Blanc.  I didn’t like the one pictured here (even though it was from New Zealand), but I have been loving Cupcake, especially in our last days of warm fall weather before it turns into red wine season.

All Ears on Deck: Magazine Music

11 Oct

Thanks to groupon, I have a subscription to Garden and Gun magazine.  Most of the recommended somewhere-in-the-south day trips, restaurants, and events are inaccessible considering my new home, but alas, the sweet editor graced me with a little piece of the south I could enjoy here in the BK.  Go here to get your own copy of each of the songs.  Starring Memphis’ own Amy Lavere, this cd reminds me where I came from.

  • “You Can’t Keep Me” / Amy LaVere
  • “Get It Daddy” / Sleeper Agent
  • “Next To The Trash” / Punch Brothers
  • “Alabama Pines”/ Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
  • “City of Refuge” / Abigail Washburn
  • “Simple Math” / Manchester Orchestra
  • “American Nomad” / The Apache Relay
  • “Caroline” / Old Crow Medicine Show (Ketch Secor)
  • “Goin’ To The Ceili” / Ricky Skaggs
  •  “Annabelle Lee” / Sarah Jarosz
  •  “False Accuser’s Lament”/ Jason Boland & the Stragglers
  •  “Midnight in Harlem” / Tedeschi Trucks Band
  •  “Dirty Side Down” / Widespread Panic
  •  “Sit Down Servant” / Mike Farris
  •  “I Gotta Go” / Robert Earl Keen

Call it impulsive, call it compulsive, call it insane.

9 Oct

Top Fives from the Weekend:

5) Meatballs and a nice glass (or two) of Barbera at the Meatball Shop in the Lower East Side, especially after stalking seats at the bar for an hour.

4) Hearing Ollabelle at the fabulous Bowery Ballroom.  They have a new cd out that comes with great renditions of Lovin’ In My Baby’s Eyes and Swanee River.

3) Seeing 30 minutes worth of skateboarders headed down Broadway, blocking traffic through a seemingly endless chain of longboards.

2) Running the Staten Island Half Marathon (and riding the ferry and breathing that hard and earning a delicious beer and sammy at Bierkraft).

1) Having a bff in town for it all.