Quickie post

The worst part about teaching a pregnant woman who doesn’t speak English very well how to bake cookies is that you can’t chow down on cookie dough in front of her.

The best part, though, is much better. And that’s baking cookies with a new friend, and getting to chow down on them together, and watching her learn after she just put you through your paces on the piano. At least, that’s my best part.… Continue reading →

My feet are going to fall off.

Bill’s mother arrived Wednesday night, and we’ve been basically running around non-stop since she arrived. I’m not entirely convinced I won’t be walking on stubs by the time she leaves tomorrow afternoon.

Basically, we haven’t been home from about 9:00 am everyday until about 11:00 pm every night. In the interium, we’ve done a lot of cool stuff. Wednesday we took her to “Xoco,”:http://www.rickbayless.com/restaurants/xoco.html which everyone knows is Bill’s favorite. She said it was the best sandwich she’d ever eaten, so well done there, Mr. Bayless & Company.

Thursday I had a piano lesson, and then joined them for wandering Mag Mile. After lunch (Elephant and Castle on Lake & Wabash), we went to the Art Institute and nearly closed the place down. Then we ate at Uno, and wandered Mag Mile some more.… Continue reading →

[49] Maple Syrup Cookies

The Complete Book of Cookies, edited by Deborah Grey

These were “emergency cookies”. As in, I needed cookies or something, fast!

I recently had the opportunity to take free piano lessons within my apartment complex. Well, they don’t cost money, but the exchange was in conversation, as my new teacher is still learning English. I had my first lesson Monday, and when she found out I didn’t have a piano, she loaned me a keyboard to practice on. She and her husband came down late Monday evening to drop it off and chat a bit, and I wanted to be able to have little snacks on hand.

These fit the bill nicely because they only have five ingredients (all of which I had on hand and none of which are typical allergens), and the directions are short and simple.… Continue reading →

[48] Mashed Potatoes

How to Cook Everything, Revised Edition by Mark Bittman

What is roast chicken without some sort of delicious Solanaceae accompaniment? It is nothing. NOTHING, I say!

Furthermore, woe betide you if you pick the wrong member of the Solanaceae family. I mean, aside from some members being highly toxic, some having psychoactive effects (some doing both…), many would just be weird. I mean, I suppose I could imagine some folks feeling an urge to smoke after a good roast chicken, but that’s really Solanaceae after the roast chicken, not with.

So, we’ve narrowed down our Solanaceae choices to, “consumables”. I’m going to go a bit further and narrow it to “edibles”. Hell, let’s go a step further and narrow it to “major food crops”. So, we’re lookin’ at eggplants, tomatoes, and potatoes. Any one of those things is delicious, I have to admit.… Continue reading →

[47] Simplest Roast Chicken 1.0

How to Cook Everything, Revised Edition by Mark Bittman

So, by now it’s beginning to look like this challenge was actually “cook our way through ’How to Cook Everything, Revised’”, I know. But it isn’t, I promise. I’m actually getting a little irked, in all honesty, that this cookbook is the one I keep pulling out. They’re not all up on this site yet, but I have 42 other cookbooks to cook from! Still, it’s amazing the recipes that are lacking. My “Complete Italian”:http://metacookbook.com/permalink/complete-book-of-italian-cooking.html cookbook? I totally expected it to have a Pasta Carbonara recipe, and it didn’t. So, Bittman it was.

With all of that said, I didn’t even hesitate to pull out How to Cook Everything when I wanted to roast a chicken. The yellow, original version is how I learned to make a “knock your socks off” roast chicken.… Continue reading →