Thursday, February 11, 2010
Benjamin may have an imaginary friend. Do-do (pronounced doh-doh, dough-dough, maybe?) lives at the North Pole, but is responsible for much of the shenanigans that happen around this house.
Benjamin and Do-do:
Sharing his remote control helicopter:
We've not left the house in a really, really long time.
~Courtney posted at 9:32:55 AM
I swear this isn't a meteorology blog...
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
...but had to share the snowman shot from a few minutes ago:
Wednesday, 11:25 am:
~Courtney posted at 11:28:37 AM
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
It's no secret that I am a fan of my slow cooker*. Most of the things we make are what I think of when I think of slow cookers; pot roast, pulled pork, beef stew and dumplings, etc.
Recently though, I've been a tad more adventurous with what I make, last night, blowing the dust off of this cookbook, I made the artichoke risotto.
It was fantastic, and the recipe was
definitely worth sharing.
From the cookbook, but mine definitely looked that pretty. I just didn't photograph it.
From the cookbook:
Here is one of Alessandro Serni's simple yet irresistible risottos from the Four Seasons Aviara restaurant, Vivace.
Makes 4 servings
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
6 cups chicken stock
4 cooked small artichokes quartered, or 2 cooked large artichoke hearts, sliced
1/4 cup unsalted butter
6 Tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for garnish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add the oil. Add the onion and garlic and saute, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the rice and stir for 1 minute, or until opaque. Add the wine, and cook for about 10 minutes, until the liquid is reduced by two-thirds.
Transfer the rice mixture to the slow cooker and add the stock and artichokes. Cover and cook on high for about 2 hours, until the rice is firm but tender. Stir in the butter, cheese, and salt and pepper to taste just before serving.
Transfer to a warmed serving dish and garnish with cheese. Serve immediately.
Some notes from my experience:
- WAY more than four servings. Closer to 6-8. Two cups of rice is a lot.
- I used a full, medium sized onion. I also did it in slices, not finely chopped.
- We used champagne. And went on to drink the rest of the bottle while our dinner was cooking.
- It took about two minutes to brown the onions in my cast iron skillet I used, not ten...so stay on that!
- Ditto on the wine/champagne. It didn't take anywhere close to 10 minutes before it was ready to be transferred to the slow cooker.
- I used a bag of frozen artichokes from Trader Joe's. Nobody would ever know. Which is good, because I tend to be intimidated by them in their fresh state.
- It took longer than 2 hours for mine to finish cooking, and my slow cooker tends to be on the hot side
- * My slow cooker (and mine is the older, dials-not-electronic-version) gets HORRIBLE reviews, but we love it. So much so, we've given it as gifts at least 3 or 4 times...
It was delish, and a much lower maintenance (read, no constant stirring) way to prepare one of our favorite dishes. And we have a lot of leftovers, which means I don't have to come up with something for dinner tonight.
~Courtney posted at 9:31:28 AM
Tuesday, February 09, 2010
I am trying not to dwell here, but since this is the closest thing B will have to a substantial baby book, it's more for the art of documentation. And a little bit of dwelling.
But really? Another 10-18 inches tonight?
It really was fun over this weekend (because we had power), but I am not quite sure I am up for another 10-18 inches of snow.
I did, however, just get my YakTrax so I am excited about my first outdoor run in a few days!
~Courtney posted at 11:05:03 AM
Courtney's Quinoa Chicken Slow Cooker goodness
Monday, February 08, 2010
Well, Andrew says it's good.
Basically, it was a hodge podge of things that I had in the fridge/freezer that I could turn into a fair quantity of food that could be consumed cold if we lost power for any amount of time.
So, far from fancy, but actually quite yummy.
3 (I used frozen...straight from the freezer to the crockpot) chicken breasts
1 bag of frozen artichoke hearts
1 bag of random frozen veggies
1 can of crushed tomatoes
1 jar of tomato/basil marinara sauce
1 chopped up onion
A bunch of garlic
Some random spices (I think I used Thyme and Basil?)
1 can of cannelini beans
I cooked all of that on low for 6 hours, (high for 3-4 would probably do the trick, too)
I used about 1/2 cup of (rinsed) quinoa, and threw it in there about 45-60 minutes before we were ready to eat.
Without the quinoa, it was definitely soup-y, and next time, I'd probably add some chicken broth in there at the same time as the quinoa to make it a little less hearty, and a little more soup-y.
Anyhow, random. Far from a recipe, but hit the spot after an afternoon of shoveling!
~Courtney posted at 11:03:16 AM
Sunday, February 07, 2010
I might post a lot from my iPhone.
Commercial convo from Super Bowl (on TiVo delay):
me: that commercial makes me want to buy that for you.
a: In my head, i've already bought it.
And no, it isn't Bud Light.
~Courtney posted at 9:03:29 PM
When life gives you snow...
Sunday, February 07, 2010
...you shovel. And shovel some more. And then some more.
...you put on snow clothes, throw your tot into the kelty backpack, despite him weighing 35 pounds, and trudge through the snow to see if Jimmy's Old Town Tavern is open. It was.
...you plan your shopping list for tomorrow morning, because three feet of snow wasn't enough, and you're likely getting another foot in two days.
In all seriousness, we were insanely lucky to only have lost power for a few minutes. Our friends had to go for hours without. We had good food, better wine, and more fresh air than we normally get when it is just cold and dreary.
This also is my first iPhone blog post. There won't be many of them; HTML is a pain on here!
~Courtney posted at 8:46:31 PM
77 and sunny...
Saturday, February 06, 2010
Just kidding. I wish. We've got well over 24 inches of snow on the ground, probably closer to 30, by now, and it's coming down as if it has no plans to stop any time soon...
It's not a good sign if the plows are getting stuck. Let's just say that we considered that the final confirmation that the Passat would stay put in the driveway.
We spent a couple of hours getting some fresh air this morning; I shoveled a whole bunch, and then the boys joined me outside to play, go for a walk, and then we shoveled some more.
"DOES ANYBODY NEED SAVING? Benjamin to the rescue!" (That would be the top of our mailbox post, by the way)
Finally, I've been measuring the snowfall with B's snowman from yesterday.
Friday, 4:00 pm
Saturday, 6:45 am
Saturday, 11:30 am
Saturday, 12:40 pm
There is a hearty, quinoa/chicken/vegetable meal in the slow cooker, a double batch of banana cupcakes cooling on the counter, and a (hopefully) soon-to-be-sleeping-still-under-the-weather-grumpy-boy in his bed.
So, since 77 and sunny isn't in the forecast any time soon, let it snow!
~Courtney posted at 1:19:09 PM
Friday, February 05, 2010
To quote Benjamin as the first flakes started to fall "This looks like snowman-makin' snow."
Word (and accumulating snow) on the street is that we're in for quite the snowstorm over the next couple of days.
Personally, I am not a huge fan of cold temperatures, massive quantities of snow, or doing a 20 mile long run on the treadmill, but there is something calming about being snowed in for a couple of days.
Full disclosure: My positive tune will be much different if we get the alleged additional storm that has been forecast for mid-next week.
We live here:
With only a little bit of daylight left for today, Andrew and Benjamin headed out for some winter wonderland fun.
And, B was right. This sure is some snowman makin' snow!
~Courtney posted at 5:04:15 PM