To be precise, SOME of my favorite things. Turns out I have some pretty bitchen stuff. I smooshed a few into one photo. I have an enamel mug because I love enamelware. I own several pots and bowls and mugs. Tomatoes, honey and sugar-free jam from my favorite place to shop locally. Custar Farm in Okemah, Oklahoma. I get fresh eggs from there. I got a hand carved cutting board from there as well. Pumpkins are in! I go there first and foremost when shopping. My French Press for my coffee. I love my French Press, a complete game changer. Mine isn't the Cadillac of French Presses but it makes a damn good pot of coffee. My favorite coffee isn't in the photo but for the record it's Cafe Bustelo. My lovely teapot makes an appearance. It's is well-loved and used constantly. I love being a "lady" with my teapot and tea cup and saucer. It's made by Shelby and is available on Amazon. A tin of my favorite tea sits next to the teapot. Twining's Lady Grey. A cupful of yummy joy! The two glass jars beside my teapot are culinary lavender(with which I make lavender lemonade) and bee pollen. What makes these favorites is the fact that I found them at T.J. Maxx for $4.00 each. Right now I toss some bee pollen in my smoothies. When the weather turns properly crisp, I'm thinking it will do in oatmeal. On the other side of my table are two spices from Penzeys Spices. Mural of Flavor and Sunny Paris. Both are salt free and taste fresh. I use Mural of Flavors on popcorn, in salads etc. Sunny Paris I believe will taste divine on potato soup and various bisques. I have several more spices from Penzeys. My friend Lisa turned me on to it and I'm slowly replacing my spices with Penzeys. I order directly from Penzeys and they throw in a freebie! Whenever I'm in Tulsa I make a point of stopping in at Trader Joe's. My essentials are in this photo Trader Giotto's Imported Olive Oil and Trader Giotto's Balsamic Vinegar of Modena. I recently read an article that featured the best store bought olive oil. Trader Joe's Giotto olive oils came in second and third. With good reason. I also put my current favorite seasoning from Trader Joe's in the photo. Everything But the Bagel Seasoning. I use it in scrambled eggs and recently added it to a grilled cheese and broccoli sandwich. Love it! The cookies are my favorite to bake. Nestle Toll House...need I say more? My copper cannisters are tucked in the back- they too are my favorite things. The cookbook stand was given to me by Gigi, it's used constantly.
And finally, my favorite cookbook in my kitchen is hands down A Boat, A Whale & A Walrus: Menus and Stories by Renee Erickson. This book is so gorgeous and sumptuous. The recipes are mouth-watering. The photography is stunning. I love the photo of her Christmas table. Warm, cozy simple and inviting. I imagine Ms. Erickson's Seattle-area restaurants to be the same. If you love from scratch with the finest ingredients, invest in this gem. I love to take this book off of the shelf and peruse it awestruck as some women do fashion magazines. Making a mental wishlist every single time.
Favorite food magazines:
The Splendid Table (can also be found on NPR)
Cookbooks (to name just a few):
Breakfast Lunch Tea by Rose Bakery (Paris, France)
Mollie Katzen's Sunlight Cafe
The Pleasure of Cooking For One by Judith Jones
The Little Paris Kitchen by Rachel Khoo
These two I use to make my lunch:
The Vegetarian Lunchbasket by Linda Haynes
The PDQ Vegetarian Cookbook by Donna Klein
As you can tell, I am quite pleased with my kitchen.
I look forward to discovering the treasures contained within everyone else's kitchen.
Perhaps people on the world wide web will share some of their favorites with us.
Amy' choice this week. And it was less about food and more about us. Our favorite things.
I try not to get so wrapped up in things.. But if I was told I could only keep a few of my things. This is what they would be..
My kitchen aid stand mixer. A gift to myself about ten years ago. Many a bake good started in that metal bowl.
Years ago I made the mistake of telling a friend that I liked tea pots. Today I have quite the tea pot collection. The one shown was sent to my father by my uncle when he was stationed overseas while in the air force
My camera is probably my most prized possession. The husband gifted it to me on my birthday several years ago. I have taken 10's of thousands photos since getting it. Joy!!
My 2012 Subaru Forester.. Aptly named Johnny Cash. Because he's been every where, man. We've taken that car from coast to coast. And many places in between.
Okay.. this might be a silly thing. But I don't ever remember a time when I didn't have a Road Atlas in my car.. At one point I had like 4. You never know.. I know, I know.. If a person has a magic phone a person has GPS.. And I use my GPS when needed. But.. I still like my Road Atlas.
Tacos.. Not just any tacos.. But.. The husbands world famous tacos.. Maybe not the WORLD.. But they are in my world..
And lastly. The stupid cat. Oh my little buddy has been with me through some major moments in my life. (He's curled up behind me even as I type)
When all the world moved on after Jim died it was Oscar who was there with me. He would curl up on my chest, covering my heart. It was his gentle purr that helped me finally fall asleep. The off thing was.. He never did that before and hasn't since. He just seems to know when I need him close. That's why he's my favorite..
So Matt sees my pictures and says, "Your favorite things are Africa and birthdays?" Ummmm...no. Anyone who knows me knows my family is numero uno. At work, I talk about my family all. the. time. I brag on all their successes and how proud I am. One new guy at work, whom I had met only hours before, joked about how my family sounded so perfect. I laughed because we are FAR from it, but I love them so very much...imperfections and all! Secondly, I love cake. Baking them, decorating them, & most importantly eating them. Matt's birthday was last weekend, so he received a Spice Cake with Cream Cheese frosting at his request. If spice cake makes him happy on his birthday, then spice cake is what he gets. I'm so fortunate and take pride in the life we have built for each other and our son. 😊
These are a few of our favorite things.
Amy, Georgia and Nikita
This week was my choice. I originally thought of something else. I asked the husband if there was anything he'd like. He mentioned nachos. So I put the vote to the other Saturday Bites ladies and nachos won by a landslide. By landslide I mean the other thing got zero votes and I don't even remember what it was.
So this is what we had. Nachos. For dinner. It was pretty easy.
Find your favorite tortilla chips. Layer them on a baking sheet. Top with your favorite things (hint to next weeks challenge). Slide in oven until cheese is all melty.
I used grilled chicken, black beans and shredded cheese/ Topped with chopped tomatoes, cilantro and sour cream
Best served warm fresh out of the oven
Believe it or not, I'm not a huge fan of nachos. They're usually a little too salty for me. A friend in Florida made them in a way that I enjoyed. In fact, she once asked me what I would like for my birthday. I requested her nachos. Funny thing is that she made them with mostly generic ingredients bought from Publix. So I kept her method in mind as I prepared my nachos. We don't have Publix in Oklahoma but we do have Trader Joe's. I was there with my friend Requita when she pointed out a couple of new items to me. So my nachos have a theme. Which leads to a name:
Harvest Nachos (made with Trader Joe's products)
If other stores carry similar products, then by all means use them
I didn't bother with exact measurements but I will say that if you want several layers simply double the recipe.
Today, we made 7-Layer Bean Dip. I know. I know. It's not Nachos, but it's close enough. It has all of the toppings you would pile on top of tortilla chips except no soggy chips! Notice in the picture, half of the dip is loaded with jalepeno and olives. Matt and Christopher felt it was a sin to not have chopped peppers on it, so I made a last minute change just for them. Also, hand model credit goes to Matt. Bea-u-ti-ful! 🤣
7-Layer Bean Dip
First Autumn Saturday. Don't overdo the pumpkin spice.
Georgia, Amy and Nikita
What to do with all that summer corn, you ask? Pop it! I made Chocolate Coconut Popcorn. It's sweet AND salty (the best flavor combination)! Take note the face staring at me in the picture. Who can say no to that? He got his serving before all the good stuff went on. 😊
Recipe from Mariah's Pleasing Plates:
Mmm popcorn.. We love popcorn so much in our house that we have one of those fancy movie theater popcorn poppers.
But Nikita's challenge was popcorn.. So Moose Munch!!!!
Dark Chocolate Moose Munch
Yay! Popcorn! The reall challenge for me was deciding just which recipe to use. I decided to do a hats off to one of my favorite blogs 3191 Miles Apart (3191milesapart.com) these ladies get me. Or they too have a lust for popcorn. I scanned their blog and found a recipe that got me a tad excited. It's basically homemade Crunch N Much, but better. I loved the end results, sweet not sugary. I used Flaxseed oil to pop the corn. Of course the air popper is healthier, whatever. I tweaked the recipe slightly to imbue Autumn flavors. I will be making this again and again.
Honey Caramel Corn
Inspired by 3191milesapart.com
A perfect treat for Autumn. Football, Halloween, movie night and so on!
I can't speak for the other ladies, but it was hard for me to want to share.
Giving thanks today for the safety of all our friends and family who were affected by hurricane Irma.
Praying for our Ecker, Brockmiller family as they say their goodbyes to Janet.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened. ~ Dr. Seuss
Nikita, Georgia and Amy
Labor Day tends to signal the unofficial end of summer. Our collective last "Hurrah" before we start planning for Autumn. I prefer Autumn to Summer but I have a heck a good time feasting on the fresh foods Summer gives. I ate tomatoes and peaches like candy this Summer. I've a few more in the fridge that will get a royal treatment soon. Or a Southern treatment as in corn bread. But I digress.
My Say Goodbye to Summer (Sealed with a Kiss) Menu:
Bishop's Peach and Honey Soup (from Peaches and Other Juicy Fruit by Olwen Woodier)
Waldorf Salad (from The Supper Book by Marion Cunningham)
Corn Quiche (from Bon Appetit August 2000- found on epicurious.com)
Summer Strawberry Pie (from A Year Between Friends:3191 Miles Apart by MAV and SCB)
The majority of the produce in this meal was grown by a local farmer. Fresh, local, seasonal. This is how I spoil myself. And gosh darnit, I deserve it!
Labor Day was a day of rest and relaxation for us! Pool, drinks, eats, and old-fashioned goofing off. We both attempted to make something new. Matt took on Grilled Lamb. It was incredibly tender and moist on the inside, and the outside had a beautiful char. He cooked up an infused olive oil with rosemary and garlic to marinade the meat. I made up Potatoes Au Gratin with cheddar and gruyere cheese. It cooked for an hour and a half, but it was most definitely worth it. To top off the night, we made Nell's Blueberry Cobbler (featured on Blueberry week last year.) Days like these show me how much our family values time with each other and good home cooking. 😊
Potatoes Au Gratin Recipe from Spend with Pennies on Pintrest:
For labor day we moved our Sunday dinner to Monday and celebrated with the family.
Auntie made BBQ ribs and macaroni salad.
I made cole slaw (totally cheated and bought the pre-made cole slaw dressing), grilled some corn and a pitcher of hibiscus tea. For dessert I made gluten free peanut butter cookies.. But you'll have to come back tomorrow for that.
Oh and Annika made these amazing little figs. They were figs stuffed with a soft Mexican cheese. They were so delicious..
Next week Nikita has challenged us with popcorn.. Can't wait to see what everyone makes.
Amy, Nikita and Georgia
Mediterranean Lima Beans.
Recipe courtesy Living Well.
Click link below
I am not a huge fan of lima beans. It's a texture thing. However, I love a challenge that makes me dig deeper and rethink certain foods. In this case I went vegetarian and reworked the recipe a little bit. Rather than a casserole, it became a simple soup. I tossed the ingredients into the slow cooker as opposed to the oven. It's still hot in Oklahoma and I didn't care to have my oven on for 4 hours. I believe I will make this one again and try different ingredients to keep it fresh.
Click below for recipe
Boston Baked Beans
This past Sunday dinner had a Mediterranean feel to it.
I made a Mediterranean lemon chicken with veggies. Randy's auntie made an amazing Spanakopita or spinach pie. Annika made a delish Mediterranean type salsa served with baked pita.
But.. This challenge was about Lima Beans. So I made Oven Roasted Garlic but added some extra veggies and love
Click below for recipe
Oven Roasted Lima Beans
Lima beans suck. That's my final answer! First, I bought a bag of dried Large Lima beans only to find out later from Matt that these bad boys are actually butter beans. The grocery store lied to me. Second, I cooked them exactly as the recipe said, and they were mushy. 😢 Worst 3 hours I've spent on food. I remember making a pot of Lima Beans and Ham a few years ago in a crockpot which came out mushy too. It was one of the few dishes that we've deemed inedible in my house. Why can't I beat this bean?!
INGREDIENTS1 1/2 cups dried large lima beans
1 cup diced English cucumber
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup cilantro, minced
4 garlic cloves, mashed
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 teaspoons sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons whole grain Dijon mustard
1/3 cup tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
INSTRUCTIONSRinse and and sort the lima beans and place in a medium saucepan. Cover with about 3 cups hot water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Let it boil for 2 minutes, then remove from heat, cover and let it sit for 1 hour. Drain, then add about 4 cups of hot water. Let it come to a boil again, then lower heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 45 minutes partially covered, or until the beans are cooked (do not overcook, as it will be mushy). Drain and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the drained and cooled lima beans with the cucumber, tomato, red bell pepper, red onion, and cilantro. In a small bowl, mash together the garlic and salt. Whisk in the lemon juice, mustard, vinegar and olive oil. Season to taste with pepper. Toss the dressing into the lima beans and vegetables. Let it sit for at least an hour in the refrigerator. Give it one final toss before serving.
Lima beans.. Love finding new ways to make food.
Poor Nikita.. The lima bean hater
Angie, Amy and Georgia
How to join:
If you'd like to join our Saturday bites club send me an email at email@example.com