Cooking + Baking

You are currently browsing the archive for the Cooking + Baking category.

We celebrated my Mom’s 72nd birthday with a weekend of fun at our house. Pizza, waffles, prickly pear margaritas to accompany a Tex-Mex BBQ of epic proportions, four varieties of homemade ice cream (peanut butter & chocolate, mixed berry, walnut {the most popular!}, and coffee), and a wicked good triple-decker strawberry frosted birthday cake, modeled by my fabulous nephew Tyler.

The Grandma Tess celebration rose is festooned with hundreds of blossoms and smells divine!
horehound
potentilla
budding goldenrod & wild bee house

As promised, our newly mulched and planted garden. The rain came right after Greg got all of the meat off the grill, with some wild torrents and furious waves of baby hail (no damage, woot!) before turning rather lovely and Portland-like for the better part of the next two days. Heavenly.

Juniper squeezing in amongst the columbine.

Our first official butterfly sighting in the garden. Here’s hoping it is a banner year!

<<>>

P.S.

A sincere note of gratitude to the best man I know (GREG!!) for replacing my computer’s power supply. You make this blog possible, and I super appreciate it.

It is now the blessed season that, when the sun rises on weekends, we are out in the garden, sipping coffee on our favorite chairs. There are too many and too few words at once: leaves glowing, birds chirping, Juniper darting. The quiet joy of being in the right place, embraced by light and nature. Home.

I have taken to buying clothes on etsy, mostly bespoke linen dresses from Lithuania. This one, freshly off and tossed onto the bed, just so, no fussing over it, and begging for a photo. I obliged.

columbine
scarlet runner bean
snowball
choke cherry

I am on The Lost Kitchen mail list, and this dazzler of a dessert, Spoon Cake, came with their last missive. Theirs was made with a straight rhubarb compote, but since mine is booger-green, which is not a failing, just the color of this particular variety, I mixed in some berries to pretty it up. It did not disappoint, in look or flavor. Huzzah!

Last year’s onions, which did barely anything during their proper season, came to life over winter and spring. How about that?

One of the wonders of living in an Air Force town is to be summoned by the roar of high flying technology and dash into the garden to gaze upon it. This is a Stealth Bomber.

Not since I was a teenager have I owned white footwear. The last, an unfortunate pair of K-Swiss, which I saved for ages to buy, only to have hurt my feet. Wah. I am happy to report these are quite the opposite. And how about the flowers? 100% why I bought them. They sparkle!

royston turquoise

The first iris bloom and Juniper on her very best behavior. Everything good at once….

Hello friends! How excited I am to say Spring has well and truly arrived. I am wearing dresses and sandals and my new favorite hat in great celebration. What a long, cold winter. Coupled with wretched COVID, it felt like years rather than months.

We’ve been doing more normal activities, like going to cherished restaurants, and eating in-person at our favorite food cart, which feels like such a treat after so much home cooking.

The garden is really coming to life, too. I’m doing a ton of planting and mulching (we had 10 yards deliverd!), an hour or two a day. This is both to replace plants killed by the horrible deep freeze and slowly fill in brown gaps in need of green and flower. I’ll show you pictures once it is all done. Maybe this weekend, as I’ll have Greg’s hands, as well as my own to finish. Juniper just lolls about and occasionally digs holes where she ought not. She is a dog, after all.

One of my favorite person’s tasks at his new job was to write a bio to accompany a photo, so we did a proper photo shoot. Isn’t he just so handsome? Greg Cooper, you are a looker!

Green mertensia and Juniper giving her best sniff.

The lamb’s ears are really starting to spread their wings.

The daphne bloomed! Hot diggity dog! This will always be the scent of Portland for me. Kinda like Froot Loops, only better.

blueberry scone goodness

Pike’s Peak peek…

Muskrat sighting!

Indian chicken – I combined a Patak’s Vindaloo curry paste with some mango chutney and water, and let the drumsticks braise in the liquid until done. I love it when something SO easy tastes SO wonderful!

I am rather sad to report that this is not my lilac in bloom here. Ours seems to be the only one in the neighborhood that got ravaged by the deep freeze. Luckily, it still has a bit of green on it, so I will prune the heck out of it and hope for it to flower next year.

She sure loves her Pops!

This morning’s walk – a frigid one of icy sidewalks, red cheeks and noses, and beautiful skies. Winter has yet to loose the weather reins, but in these drought filled times, I’m glad for whatever moisture is delivered.

Red chile with chorizo, delightfully topped and dipped. Oh, and one of my best-ever margaritas. Birds of a feather and all.

I think this is going to be on the frequent dessert rotation list. It’s a very crave worthy gelatin, yogurt or sour cream, and cream cheese no-bake cake that whips up lickety-split quick. Since I am not terribly fond of cheesecake crust, I left it out, and it reads more like a wonderfully silky pudding, with minimal sugar. I love how any topping would make it shine. These are blueberries. Bananas and peaches forthcoming.

The hubster got a new job! As always, I am proud to be his #1 gal and cheerleader through a pretty exhausting process. We’ve decided that many tech companies, when interviewing, are more keen on what a candidate does NOT know than their actual strengths, both in software development and as an individual, relating human to human. Kinda sad. The very cool socks were part of a fun welcome-to-the-company swag box.

Carrot ginger soup with turmeric cream. I find it very curious that super orange carrots turned such a neon shade of yellow.

Double the yolk breakfast sammy. Isn’t nature a wonder?

This isn’t the prettiest in the land (see carrot soup above) but boy was it delicious! It’s a fish chowder (shrimp, clam, sea bass) with the ultimate chicken-style dumpling lily-gilder. More, please.

When I made our Chinese takeout meal, I bought a package of egg roll wrappers, but dang, if there aren’t a million of them. So I waited for an idea to come. Butternut squash and sage ravioli! A lazy woman’s delight of feeling home made without the need to roll pasta. Ahem, yes. More please.

Logan George, our neighbor of three, with THE coolest name in the hood, had a wee baby brother! I made cupcakes and bought cool baby things. You are loved, little Max.

My sesame chicken disappointment is dearly departed, peeps. I asked, and the interwebs provided, though I did not deep fry. The best we’ve ever had.

Meal in Reverse: Apple and fennel pizza with hot honey (poured from Grandma’s pot!!) for dessert. Mushroom and fennel pizza for the main. Salad not pictured. Delicious, of course. What a delight to see the smile when I boxed it for leftovers.

And a note to former Portlanders living in Colorado Springs who also happen to be fans of Mama Lil’s. They have GIANT jars at Costco. Saints preserve us…

Just like IKEA

Savory Corn Custard with Mushroom & Linguica

No, seriously!! The washing machine ate my pants.

Marge Simpson

It’s beautiful where we are!

Tags:

« Older entries