Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Cauliflower & tomatoes

I had a half of a head of cauliflower leftover from my giardiniera, so I needed to use it up, I also had some tomatoes that needed a home.... My fiancee's mom makes a dish with boiled cauliflower, tomatoes and pasta. Ok, sounds good to me.

I attempted to recreate.....

Saute some onions in olive oil. I threw in a hot cherry pepper from my garden, too.

Chop some (I used 2 medium and one small) tomatoes, basil, parsley and oregano. All from my garden!! After the onions are soft, add the tomatoes and herbs. Let the maters cook down for about 15 minutes over low heat.

See - beautiful!!

While the onions cooked, I boiled some water and added the cauliflower. I boiled it until it was tender then I added the onion and tomato mixture. Let that boil for a while, season with salt and pepper then add 1/2 pound of pasta. And turn the heat off immediately. If you don't, your pasta will be way too soft. Pour some in a bowl and enjoy!

It was good, not my future mom-in-laws, but ok. Maybe half water, half chicken stock next time? Maybe a sprinkle of parm cheese???
Either way it was good enough to bring for lunch today. It's better after it sat overnight. I also brought that salad I didn't eat yesterday for lunch, but I didn't eat it again! Still not feeling it. Oh well. I have a grapefruit that I might snack on in a little bit, but I don't want to ruin my appetite for dinner. Finally the fiancee is making me dinner! I feel like it's been forever! It's really been like 3 days, but that's a long time for him not to cook. We've been busy.
Speaking of busy - we are getting married in exactly 1 month from today! Wow, time really flies. I feel like yesterday we had 8 months to go, now we have a month! Wow....

Forever a changed woman

Sunday was a very lazy day in the Georgia household. We ordered Chinese take out, we caught up on DVR, we watched movies. It was glorious. I ordered chicken and broccoli because you can practically eat the entire container and still be under your Weight Watcher points!

Monday morning came with the arrival of a little something that will forever change my life. You heard me ranting about how I had a mini French Press on my wedding registry, right? Well, it was one of the first gifts that was sent my way. Great. However, it was in a million pieces when I received it. So, I sent it back to Macy's and waited patiently.

Behold..... My mini 3 cup French Press!!

3 cups is a bold lie, it's a 1 cupper, but it does the trick! We have a big 12 cup coffee machine, but I'm the only one in the house that makes coffee during the week, the fiancee gets his at his job. So, it was becoming a hassle to clean and make one cup of coffee everyday in that big machine. So, I registered for the mini press! And let me tell you, it has changed my life. By far the best cup of coffee I've ever had.

Then I came to work and had to drink this crap. The grapefruit was good, though!

A little leftover Chinese for lunch....

And dinner was as Southern as you can get! I've had more tomatoes in the past week out of my garden than I had all year last year! So, I cut some up, toasted some Wonder Smart bread and a little schmear of light mayo, s&p and you have yourself a bone fide Southern tomato sandwich. It doesn't get better than this! I added some sweet potato rounds as a side with some ketchup for dunkin'.

I brought some cherries for breakfast on Tuesday, but I wasn't hungry until lunchtime. So I waited. I ate the ham sandwich, the cherries and left the salad. Just wasn't feeling it.

Poor salad, it looks pretty.
Time for dinner!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Coffee on the floor, not pants on the ground

I was sound asleep by 10pm on Friday evening. I'm quite the party animal....

Anywho, I had big plans for Saturday. There was coffee on the counter....

And then coffee all over the floor. Can you see my toes?

Oh darn.

I finally cleaned up all the coffee grinds and made my way to the gym. 45 minutes on the elliptical. Glorious.

Pineapple yogurt was waiting for my return. This is seriously the best flavor. Thick, creamy and pineapply. That is a word.

Lunch was pretty boring. Ham and cheese with carrots and cucumber dunked in....

My last bit of hummus.

Last week I was messing around in the garden and I accidentally knocked off some green tomatoes from my plant. I thought about frying them, as a true Southern lady would, but I figured my hips like to be less Southern. So, I tackled homemade giardiniera. According to Wikipedia.
My father-in-law makes it and it's so good on toast or sandwiches. So, I started chopping -

green tomatoes (from my garden)
cherry peppers (left whole & straight from my garden)
cubanel peppers (also from the garden)
long hot peppers
sliced eggplant

Put a layer of veggies in a container and sprinkle with Kosher or sea salt. Add another layer of veggies and another sprinkle of salt. Repeat until all the veggies are gone.
I opted for Tupperware. I figured it would be the easiest to track the progress of the veggies.

Then cover with plastic wrap or foil. And find something heavy.

Because you need some serious weight to allow the veggies and salt to do their thing. I found that some big cans of tomatoes and ceramic mugs did the trick.

Let the veggies sit for 2 weeks on your counter. You will notice water form at the bottom of your container and that's a good thing! That means everything is brining and preserving. After 2 weeks, rinse with a mixture of vinegar and water then store the veggies in an airtight container (think Mason jar) and cover with oil. Always keep the veggies covered with oil and they will last forever. Literally, I think. A long time, at least. Enjoy!
Saturday night we headed to Atlantic City for some food and fun. Wine and sushi make for a happy Georgia.

And edemame, I'm addicted.

Spicy tuna roll.

And chicken and rice with asparagus.

Got home late and crashed until late Sunday morning....ahhhhh.

Celebrations call for coffee

A wonderful celebration Thursday night equals a little extra coffee Friday morning....

And a very bountiful breakfast. This is a staple when we go to the shore. My father-in-law's potato and eggs. So good. Slices of fried potatoes, scrambled eggs with parsley and cheese. So simple. So delicious.

And more coffee. It's going to be a long Friday.

My portion with a couple of olives. I could have eaten the whole pan.

That's one crazy bird

Rewinding a bit to last week - after I left work on Thursday I made a bee-line (or is it b-line?) to Starbucks. I was so sleepy and I needed a serious kick. A Venti caramel macchiato did the trick.

Huge and delicious. That's what she said.


What goes better with a beautiful afternoon and coffee? The pool, of course! I threw my bathing suit on and laid by the pool for an hour or so. Just what I needed.

Then I spotted this little fella....

He wasn't afraid of anything, I walked right up to him and took some pictures. What did he do? Just looked at me, almost as if he was posing....

Then he decided he needed a little bath...

He finally came to my chair and said goodbye before walking through the fence.

I found him a little later that evening taking a nap in the shade by the driveway. How strange!
Next up?? Celebration dinner! We decided to splurge (tune of my week....) as a celebration of my radio station's great ratings!
Filet, shrimp and some grilled veggies sprinkled with parm cheese.

Mmmmm. So good. There was more food, but couldn't fit it into my belly. I've been a little more than indulgent this week! But dinner was spectacular.

So was champagne by the ocean!

With blueberries. So refreshing. The celebration didn't stop there. What's a party without flaming Sambuca? Evidently, there is no party without flaming Sambuca.

Sometimes I wonder if normal people do the same things that we do....

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Creepy crawly critters from the sea

I had no appetite this morning at all. I believe it's because I've been indulgent for dinner the past couple of evenings. I really think it has an impact on my appetite the next morning. So, this morning, I listened to my body and didn't eat until I was hungry. That happened to be around lunch time. And like I warned you....monotonous.... Turkey sammy with carrots and cucumbers. Tasty, but still boring. I also had some coffee this AM and some water this afternoon.

I will be stopping at Starbucks this afternoon after work for a little frap action. This is in celebration. Why, you ask? Well, we got our ratings here at the radio station.... and they were really good!!! Individually I did awesome! And the radio station as a whole did really well, too!!

Let the celebration begin this afternoon.... :)

On to the reason why I didn't need breakfast this morning.

Behold creepies from the sea.

My average blue claw crab consumption (how about that alliteration!) is about 4 whole crabs. Last night I stopped at 2 because I could not stop thinking about this......

Well, yes the view of the ocean (Ironically where these little guys came from, sorry fellas...) but more importantly......

THE PASTA! The pasta that is cooked to a perfect al dente, the pasta that swims in delicious crabby juices, the pasta that has close to 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese atop......Heaven. Believe it or not, I had 2 & 1/2 plates just like this. I kid you not. Because it was fan-freaking-tastic. I do not feel guilty. I feel thankful that I can enjoy such a wonderful dish like this.
That is all.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Showers, cupcakes and iPhones

Well hello there!! It's been a while - my mom was in town for a week and we got to spend some nice quality time together, so I decided to not blog while she was around. We don't get to see each other all that often, she lives in Atlanta, so it was a real treat that she was able to make the trip up to Yankeeville for my wedding shower!

The shower was a huge success! My mother in-law decided to host the party at her house - so convenient. There was a HUGE spread of delicious food and we ended up having around 60 people hanging out.

Here is my mom in-law and I
The food!

All of my girlfriends!

My Maid of Honor and mama

Cooking - getting ready for the party!

Yummy Brown Betty cupcakes - they rocked! I had the strawberry, the one with pink icing.

It was a great Sunday afternoon that last way into the night with lots of fun games, great food and even better company. I'm very grateful for all of my friends and family!
Now, let's get back to business....
Remember I mentioned that the fiancee and I ordered iPhones? Well, they came in yesterday! I'm still having issues getting my phone activated, (sigh....) but I can tell that I am going to love every little piece of this new technology. Hopefully I will have everything worked out by this afternoon. I feel a little anxious and nervous without a cell phone.....creepy.

Bye bye Blackberry. We had a good run. Hello beautiful iPhone!
Here is my laptop set up in my office at work (I have a desktop computer without iTunes....) trying to get iTunes to activate my phone....

Breakfast will help alleviate the stress. Didn't end up eating the grapefruit, but the pineapple and cherries were on point. Sweet and juicy.

After a crazy week full of entertaining mama and preparing for my bridal shower, we need a break! Luckily the in-laws shore house is open for the week. We will be frolicking in the ocean at the Jersey Shore (not THAT Jersey Shore...) for a few days. So, I packed up 4 days worth of lunch and brought it to work. This way I know that I have a healthy breakfast and lunch already prepared for the week. It also means that my meals will be a little monotonous. I apologize in advance.
Case in point, lunch of a turkey sandwich on Wonder Smart bread with some romaine lettuce, American cheese and spicy mustard. Add a side of carrots and cucumbers and you got yourself a healthy and balanced lunch, if not boring. But good.

I'll be back with a dinner of creepy crawlies from the ocean! Stay tuned!