Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Driving Range and Shrimp Etouffee

Would you believe that before yesterday, neither of us has ever been to the driving range before? Wow, what fun! A hundred balls for $10, we could borrow the clubs, and just whack the heck out of them. My shots were wayward at best, but Tavo really was getting the hang of it. (it didn't hurt that they had beer for $2 to sip while watching or playing) Here's some pics of the up and coming golf pro.
(I can't believe these photos came from my cheap camera phone...I'm impressed!)
Very fun! We'll definitely do that again.

Now, I've made Shrimp Etouffee before, altering Katherine's Crawfish Etouffee recipe from Smoky Mountain Cafe. I really, really enjoyed that recipe. I do love to experiment, though, so this time I decided to give Paula Dean's recipe a try.

Rouxing it up--I'm never using butter again, oil is so much more forgiving...
**ad lib** maybe I should stick to butter? How do you roux?

Everything but the shrimp, cooking down. Paula's recipe suggested using Ro*Tel but I stuck with regular whole tomatoes, broken up by hand.
Dinner, with our herbs from the garden. I was in the healthy mood, so we have brown rice.

Verdict? We both still like Katherine's recipe better. Maybe its because we cooked the veggies down first, then started the roux? Maybe it was the use of stock as opposed to clam juice? The addition of sherry? I'm not sure, but both of agreed that while Paula's recipe is good, it isn't the best.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Custard, Plants, and what is wrong with our Tomatoes???

We will always remember Michael Jackson. Had to pull out the Thriller album and play it all night last night to celebrate his memory. "He is one hell of a dancer" -Fred Astaire

Our roses are blowing up, despite the lack of rain...

Police on horses, headed down Georgia Avenue.
Mexican Chocolate Custard, based on Molly Katzen's recipe from the original Moosewood Cookbook. If I made it again, I think I would mix some high quality dark chocolate in--I needed a little more bitterness.
(yes, I used coffee cups because I don't have custard cups. They matched, though!)
My favorite flower in the entire world, my gladiolas :) They make me glad.

Healthy tomatoes...

Okay--my Gardening Gurus...what happened to these guys??

(I have a sneaking suspicion it has something to do with 100 degree days and no rain for a week....)

I can't leave this post with such a sad end...one more flower picture for you.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Michigan and the Graduation!

First things first--Congratulations Little Sister!! My sister has been plugging away, steadily, at her Bachelor's and she graduated last week! Good job, Linds :) We're very proud of you.

To celebrate, we all went up to the beach on Lake Huron. Even though it was chilly and cloudy, my cousins were determined to have a blast :) Three year olds and five year olds always seem to have a good time!

Finding shells..
...and we found some beer--Cheers to the graduate!
My sister probably made about 25 sand castles. You see, my little cousins REALLY excel in destroying sand castles ;)
My feet were buried. (Don't worry, I was able to escape!)

The sun came out and this little cutie woke up from her nap, just in time to hop in the pool.

Thanks Mom, Dad, cousins and sister for an excellent weekend!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Picnic Game--XXX pizza ;)

I'm going to a picnic, and I'm bringing XXX pizza. Honestly, this isn't X-rated pizza, but it sure feels that way. Sinfully delicious! Plus, it's hot enough here in Georgia, that you would probably want to eat in the nude, anyways ;)

So, please, don't act the xenos, hop on your xebec and bring your xylophone! Let's eat some XXX pizza.

Oh dear, this is cheesy!

Herb bread recipe for dough, altered to use herbs I had available from the garden. Additionally, I used both wheat and white flour as opposed to just white.

Raw dough, goat cheese, and more fresh basil...
Baked, with more fresh herbs on top. Combination of the cooked and fresh, this time!
My slices, with honey and crushed red pepper. Do you like honey on your pizza? It's worth it, for sure :)

Thank you, Month of Edible Celebrations for letting me play!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Pico de Tasty

So Lini is in Detroit so I am doing a quick post to some other slamming chefs in the ATL.

First a not so great example from my own hand. Oh boy, these eggs had goat cheese, old bay seasoning, and butter. Although three of my fave items, definitely not good in same dish.
So after my hearty meal, I tried to get some boxes in the attic, but their are so many of them! I am still finding boxes labeled "Lee Den Books", but I am out of shelf space.My sister Raquel had me over and cooked up some tasty Pico de Gallo quesadillas.

She is kinda crazy for scrapbooking and John Legend. Never listened to him before, but kinda dig it.
Kids love quesadillas.

yum. safe travels alien de bleu.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Bad food and good food

Isn't it horrible when you go out to eat and the food is...appalling? This happened to us last friday. We go out for happy hour with my coworker and his fiance almost every friday--and we try a variety of different bars. This one, which I'm not going to name, has decent beer prices...but the food. Oh dear.

How can a restaurant screw up fried food?? Craziness.

So, to balance the post, onward to some good food. Remember those homemade pitas we made with the pizza dough? We had some falafel and tzatziki to round it out. Deeeeeeeee-lish!

I'm heading to Detroit this weekend for Little Sister's graduation from college. Congratulations Little Sister!!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

hmm...how about some pizza?

I know I post about pizza all the time, but its my favorite food! So, here's yet another pizza post for you. There is a question, though...raw basil or cooked?

This is how I reheat frozen sauce--do you guys use a similar method? Is there any foul chemical disease I can get from heating plastic freezer bags?

Our herbs are going nuts--I foresee a pesto post in our near future.

Pizza number one. Pizza Margherita, with the basil added after cooking.

Pizza number two. Pizza Margherita, with the basil added before cooking.
Which do you prefer? I did a little research, and wasn't sure which method was the preferred. I'll be honest with you--I liked the cooked basil better. Our friend preferred the raw basil, though.

We made pitas with the leftover dough. Tavo was quite pleased with the puffiness ;)