Something Blue

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Just wanted to share some pictures I took yesterday when I tested my Olloclip lenses for my IPhone. I have a thing about hydrangeas and when faced with a sea of them, I swoon, recover and then overload on them. Do you know in most other parts of the world they are called ‘hortensia’? I love that name. Enjoy!

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French inspiration for breakfast

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I’ve been trying to make this recipe that I found on Pinterest, and finally decided I could make it for breakfast this morning because I needed desperately to feed the Hubs who hadn’t eaten since yesterday lunch. We also had two house guests last nite, our friends A &B, who came to see the Hubs in his production of Night Watch at Concord Players Players. When we got home from the theater at 11 pm, frankly we were more interested in adult bevvies than food.

Anyway, I set the tables with my new “Paris” pink dishes from Crate and Barrel, cut up some fruit poured some juice and assembled this take on a croque Monsieur in no time! Topped off with a simple fried egg, totally yummy. Would have been great with a Mimosa, but that would have required a post prandial nap, that I just did not have time for today.

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For those of you who are theater lovers, “Night Watch” was written by Violet Lucille Fletcher who was the author of the famous film noir movie “Sorry, Wrong Number”!

Don’t you love the dishes? So good for spring and summer dining!

Planes, trains, and automobiles…

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No good deed goes unpunished and no seemingly hassle free flight with an empty seat beside you goes unpunished either. Originally supposed to be out of Orlando at 1 pm, I had a productive morning of conference calls, cleaning email and finishing a project. Get through security in record time for this airport only to find flight delayed till 2:13. Equipment gets to gate at 1:45 and the little Jet Blue elves clean the plane and get us boarded by 2:10. Hmmmm, I think, not bad and voila, no one beside me. ( when does that ever happen anymore?)

Then things go terribly wrong. Long taxi time equals fuel burn. Not a problem unless you burn so much that you don’ t have enough to reach destination. But that’s ok because destination is socked in with fog and below FAA minimums ( Is that like a drink minimum? I’ll have wine. Thank you) I’m talking you ORH ( Worcester ,MA)! Let’s fly to Boston instead and we’ll bus you to Worcester when we land.

Sounds like a plan right? I mean other than the fact that the reason you are flying from Worcester in the first place is partly to avoid a Friday nite rush hour slog. But a plan nonetheless.

But plans are made to be broken and while we sit at gate to get new fuel numbers, Orlando is on a ground hold for thunderstorms….Oy. Plan A goes in circular file, bring up plan B.

Plan B involved a Iota of paperwork for the airline while we sat at the gate, then a long slog to runway where we were one of a kazillion planes jockeying to takeoff. Planes to the right of me, planes to the left of me, here I am. Finally, up in the air, free movies, but no good choices, so I finished a book and played way too many games of Free Cell.

Land in Boston where it is remarkably clear, Logan evidently had weather problems all day because at 8:30 on a Friday nite, it looked like a kicked over ant hill.

Then I find the JetBlue reps, who remarkably, were where the announcement said they would be in the terminal. They led the little band of Worcester refugees to the coaches. Zip down the Mass Pike, and then do a scenic tour of Worcester to get to the airport where everyone had a car parked except me. What’s this? No fog? Quelle surprise.

Off the bus into a cab and finally through my front door at 10:52 pm. Let me tell you a grilled cheese sandwich tastes like the best food in the world when you are that tired and hungry!

What should be remembered is that no iPhone battery lasts forever and it is especially true that when you need your phone, it will run out of juice and planes and busses have no power ports. This is the black beauty that got me through this long trek.

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Macarons, the Magnificent Obsession #3 ( technically the 4th time I’ve mentioned them)

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I know you are sick of hearing about macarons, but honestly I am completely jazzed by the fact that I can make them. I’m a little late but wanted to show you the batch I turned out in time for Valentine’s Day. I personally believe it was a sublime pairing of flavors, although I will tell you I took a short cut for the filling and used Stonewall Kitchen Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Sauce . What is not to like about that combination of flavors? As for the macarons themselves, well they were mocha flavored and in the middle of the sauce I put a little dab of fresh strawberry jam.

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Notice anything ?

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Notice anything? Like absence of snow? A palm tree? Blue pool water? Blue sky? 70 degrees Fahrenheit ? Oh you can’t see that, but you can imagine it….how about the jasmine and pots of petunias and the scent they carry? Imagination there too huh? Well, I can see and smell and feel all of this because I get a 48 hour reprieve from winter courtesy of an in and out meeting in Orlando. Despite the fact that I walked off the plane and into the airport hotel, I was determined to at least sniff humidity and warmth. So I took myself off to the pool deck for 15 minutes of a tropical breeze, the scent of jasmine and the sound of a pool fountain. Did I mention it was 70 degrees Fahrenheit ? Sorry…

Meatless Mondays

When I think of it, I try to stick to Meatless Monday for at least one meal on Mondays. Definitely better for our health along with other sustainable initiatives. I did a marathon cooking session over the weekend and two of the items comprised our meatless Monday supper tonight.

First, I made Curry Lentil Soup. Not too many ingredients, and very forgiving when cooking. Start with 1/4 inch dice onion (1) in 2 tsp of olive oil. Add 4 medium peeled carrots sliced thin. Sweat the onions and carrots for 6 to 8 minutes. Now it’s time to add spices. Curry powder, turmeric, ground ginger,celery salt, cardamom all go in and stir with onions and carrots. Keep mixing to your taste, and remember spiciness will get diluted with broth. Add 1/2 cup red lentils, and stir to coat with all the spices and oil. Add 4 cups of vegetable stock and simmer for about an hour on low heat. Make sure pot is covered!
Adjust your seasoning, add a little salt and you are good to go!

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Next up, a deconstructed ratatouille,aka a roasted vegetable stack. I sliced zucchini, summer squash, redskin potatoes, and onions and tossed lightly with avocado oil, salt and pepper. I made rows of alternating vegetables in a
pan.

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Once the pan was out of the oven, I spread the veggies with a roasted pepper spread I made last week with some peppers (red,yellow,orange) and some olive oil. Easy peasy!

Here’s the finished product!

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It should be noted that Meatloaf Tuesday follows Meatless Monday…

More than a hangar…it’s an organizing system!

There is a lot of gear in our kitchen. Not too many “bass o matic” type gadgets that only do one thing, but a lot of things. I have a lot of cooking aides that ideally have to be kept flat to be effective, namely silicone mats.

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And so I took a cue from my clothes closet and hung them up! I can tuck them into the corner of the pantry between the wine fridge and the wall!

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It has saved the Hubs from a tangled mess in a cabinet so many times! I do the same for my cushioned terry dish drying mats. I still fold my dish towels, but did have to move them to a larger drawer!

Truck Day!

Always good news, Saturday was Truck Day for the Boston Red Sox. Only in Boston can the day that an 18 wheeler packed with batting cages, bats, balls, uniforms, and ace bandages make the news. But every year, it’s practically Mardi Gras for Bostonians when the truck is packed up and ready to go. There’s face painting, there’s Wally the Green Monster wearing his Hawaiin shirt and throwing favors,there’s a giant Dunkin Donuts Cup. And in the great words of Julia Roberts  in “Pretty Woman”  … “hey, there’s a band!” I wonder why no one on the Red Sox has figured out that they could serve breakfast in the .406 club, charge $50 bucks a head and make a pantload of money for the Jimmy Fund. Who wouldn’t show up to eat scrambled eggs on a cold winter Saturday when you can’t play golf, garden or go to the beach? Unless of course, you are following the truck to Ft. Myers.

Other questions that need to be answered if you are a member of the Red Sox Nation…who will replace Jenny Dell? Is Steven Drew coming back? Just sign Jon Lester, and keep him in the organization for life, he’ll give you everything you need and then some.

Pitchers and Catchers report in 6 days!

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Where ya been?

I know, I know ! I’m not being a good blogger and not keeping to my publishing schedule at all. Two very long weeks of work and fighting a major head cold has kept me away from my laptop.  I can’t shake the “cement” head feeling I have had for a week.  But I’m on the mend. Now we have to deal with another almost foot and a half of snow courtesy of mother nature that dropped today here in the higher elevations of Massachusetts.  Luckily I have a full day of crafting and cooking ahead for the weekend!

I suppose I should account for all my time away from all of you.  Here is the best description I can give you of my past 10 days or so.

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And this is how my husband feltcold e card

So I’ll be back soon! With full reports on everything!