Getting ready for “The Game”…

IMG_3790Once upon a time, I was in my twenties, unmarried and had been to one pro football game in my entire life, and that one was spent working a concession stand as a fundraiser for my parish. Fast forward to the late 90’s when a man changed my life…and it wasn’t the Hubs. It was Bob Kraft, who built a stadium and a championship team. Suddenly, like the Red Sox, now I cared. I hate when they make me care…

Anyway, I’m starting to think about what I’ll make for Super Bowl and knowing how the Hubs and I watch the game is important in the decision making process. One of the factors has to be “prep-ability” and fussiness level. I need to be able to prep it ahead and just pop in oven or on the heat for when we get hungry and it can’t be too fussy, because you never know when you are going to need to stand in front of the tv, in the coaching box, and make sure that Tommy and Danny and Gronk pull through…

I submit for your ease and satisfaction a buffalo chicken stuffed pie. Or whatever you all something with dough, that’s filled and baked.


Simply marinate chicken tenders or chicken breasts in Franks’ Hot Sauce. Then bake them till done. Shred the chicken and mix with more Hot Sauce, and an 8 oz block of lo fat cream cheese. Mix thoroughly.


Spread on the single pie shell you happen to have hanging around from the holidays, fold over and bake as directed. Make sure you cut vent slits in top. You can hold it in one hand and your beer in the other….

Well that didn’t turn out quite the way I planned…


Somewhere recently I saw a recipe for grilled feta based Greek salad. It failed to tell you that grilling meant over open fire, not grilled on a pan. Then you just get melted cheese. However I can tell you that it was delicious. And just because it was handy and about to go over the edge…I added avocado. Which just upped the yummy factor.


I cut up some cherry tomatoes, cukes, and red onion and tossed with canned and rinsed chick peas and some olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper and dill.


I cut some giant greek olives up for garnish and taste. Those pits are hard to get out….


I plated it all up on some butter lettuce. I wish I could remember what I served it with…I’m sure it was some kind of grilled meat!

I was just thinking….


I was just thinking this week….

That I saw the inside of a lot of NYC yellow cabs…however, you can watch TV and pay with an app. Technology…

I really need to master the subway in NYC because sitting in traffic is a time waster…

If I continue to spend a lot of time in NYC, then some nite I’m going to see what Broadway show I can get a discounted ticket/s to at the last minute…

If you’re in NYC and someone says, “it’s only 10 blocks”…make sure you understand if they are east/west blocks ( long) or north/south blocks (short). I can do either, I just have to prepare…

Back in Boston, I keep seeing the same girl at South Station every morning. She’s wearing 5” platform spike heels…in this weather. Brave.

I don’t know any of the songs/singers nominated for Grammies, and felt the same way about Golden Globes and SAG awards. Who is watching all these shows? Who has the time? And how much are they paying in cable or streaming fees?

I just washed the window on my front door. Ashamed of myself. My mother would be apoplectic.

I’m ready for it to be spring…

Art Imitates Life


The Hubs and I have had a longstanding tradition on New Years Eve of seeing two movies in one afternoon, usually popular big budget soon to be nominated for awards films, then going home, eating lobster and drinking champagne and going to bed by 10. I think it’s been at least a decade since I saw the clock strike 12 midnite, it might have even been Y2K. This year, however, the New England Patriots had their final game of the season and with best record, a bye week and home field advantage on the table we felt we needed to see them through. Besides the movies we wanted to see hadn’t been released yet…

Fast forward to this weekend when again, the mercury is back at the bottom of the the thermometer outside, and outside activities are a little curtailed. We indulged in late brunch at our favorite little divey diner and then took ourselves off to the multiplex.

I decided to share my thoughts about both of these messages not because of the terrific acting, writing and storytelling that both of them entail, but because of the messages from history that come through loud and clear.

Spoiler alert: Liberal political leanings will be displayed here.

Darkest Hour is the backstory behind Winston Churchill’s rise to power as prime minister in the truly dark days in 1940 as the world watched Hitler invade most of Europe. In May, almost all of the British army has their back against the sea at Dunkirk and Churchill is trying to pull off a rescue by sending another garrison, stationed up the road in Calais, to almost certain death by intercepting the Nazis. He has come to power on the heels of Neville Chamberlain, who is still engineering a possible peace deal with Hitler , “on favorable terms” behind the scenes. In an almost certainly fabricated scene on the Underground, Churchill decides that the country must stand firm in the face of looming invasion by Hitler and the Axis. He is urged on by the ordinary Joe on the subway line going to Westminster. “Fight” is the word heard again and again. Fight against the despot, fight against invasion, fight against everything that Hitler stands for and preserve the United Kingdom and its’ territories. Gary Oldman is transformed into Churchill, but it is the message more than the man that is important here.

After a short break for popcorn and a bevvie, we saw Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks in “The Post”. I am old enough to remember the Pentagon Papers, when the Fourth Estate stood strong against a president bent on hiding the truth. More than the performance again, is the message that comes through as the Washington Post , on the verge of being publicly traded, with a newly widowed Katherine Graham at its helm, transforms from a “regional” newspaper to a journalistic titanic that in less than two years after the Pentagon Papers story breaks will break the story to the world of the Watergate break ins and will bring down a president. The message again is clear and came directly from the Supreme Court, the power of the press exists for the governed, not the governing body.

I would urge certain members of certain branches of the US government to take note, however I fear it will fall on deaf ears. I can only hope that like the two historical examples depicted on the screen, the outcome is for the citizens. That together, all will be made right.

A sidenote about Spielberg’s treatment of “The Post”. Like a spectre of what the US could have had, a dead ringer for a young Hilary Rodham ( Clinton) can be seen in the scenes at the Supreme Court. She is in a long shot of the security line and again outside on the steps when Katherine Graham breaks away from the gang of men and walks away on her own…through a crowd of young, diverse women.

Easy as Pie


The week after Thanksgiving, I cooked my own turkey and wound up freezing over 1/2 of the bird even with leftovers. The Hubs sliced it up nice and neatly but managed to save the whole turkey breast in one piece. I thawed it out thinking I would make soup, but decided instead to make turkey pot pie. It’s so much easier than you think it might be!


Dice up your onions and turkey and keep separate. Melt a stick of butter in a large high sided skillet. Add about 1/3 cup of flour a little at a time to make a roux


Saute the onions until clear, add some frozen peas and mini carrots. Then add the turkey. Any liquid should start being absorbed by the roux. Add one cup of chicken broth and simmer it down for about 3 minutes.  It will start to thicken.


Add a 1/3 cup of heavy cream and stir. Place in a pie shell.


Cover with second shell, crimp the edges and poke some slits so that it will vent. Bake at 375° for about 45 minutes until brown and crispy crust and bubbly inside. Cool and enjoy!


Five for Friday

Reimagining winter at botanic gardens at nite….bring your own hot chocolate!

Back to work in downtown Boston and spending a lot of time in the transformed Seaport District. Found HUGE planters of FRESH holiday flowers in a little green space. Beautiful amaryllis, hydrangeas and bells of Ireland, mixed with evergreens, magnolias and bare branches.

Nearby an installation of “balloons” on street lamps and hiding under park benches..

Reminding us to be happy…

A lovely reminder for these confusing and stressful times…

Stay tuned…

noun: hiatus; plural noun: hiatuses
  1. a pause or gap in a sequence, series, or process.
    “there was a brief hiatus in the war with France”
    synonyms: pause, break, gap, lacuna, interval, intermission, interlude, interruption, suspension, lull, respite, time out, time off, recess; More

    You guys! I’m going back to work! Many of you know that I took a package in the middle of last year and after about a month of vacation, have been looking for gainful employment. I got an offer early in Thanksgiving week and will be starting a new phase on Monday, December 4th. I can’t wait to get going and learn a whole new business. I don’t have any responsibility for food for the first time in over 30 years. Even I’m shocked! But its a great opportunity with a great company with opportunity for growth and challenge that will utilize my experiences and skills in operations and client support.

    While I ramp up and learn a whole new company, new team, new clients and and customers and more…I’m going to take a hiatus in the production of CashmereTea. I will be back and may even post some oldie, moldy favorites, but can’t make any promises.  So stay tuned, 2018 will be a new year in a lot of ways.

    Happy Holidays! See you in 2018!

Something Fishy


When my parents were both alive and well, they used to come to join the Hubs and I for most of Thanksgiving week. They only lived 50 miles away, but they would move in on Tuesday and go home on Friday. My father would take up a post in the chair with his newspapers and tea, my mother and I would plant bulbs, drink tea and on the nite before Thanksgiving, when the malls were empty, we would make a strategic strike for gifts at the advance sales. My father and the Hubs were left home to make the traditional homemade fish cakes with tartar sauce, baked beans, cole slaw and brown bread. It’s only traditional for us, but I cherished it.


This year, because I had some frozen haddock in the freezer and am trying to work down the inventory, I made fish cakes for the first time since they passed. I think I did them justice. The above picture is a portion of the recipe file I had to wade through to find my father’s copy, originally published in the Boston Globe. It is foolproof.


You will need 1 pound of cod or haddock for every 2 diners. Cook it in a 300° oven for about 20 minutes. Coat it with a little olive oil and sea salt before cooking. When it’s cool, flake it into a mixing bowl, removing any bones or skin.


Mix the fish with mayo, an egg, finely chopped fresh parsley, “live” bread crumbs (meaning from fresh bread) and dijon mustard, preferably the country style.

Form the mixture into loose balls of mixture, then form them into patties. Coat the patties with dry bread crumbs. Keep flat on a  plate or pan and pop in fridge for about an hour.


Meanwhile mix up a batch of the best tartar sauce you will ever have made out of mayo, lemon juice, pickle relish, finely chopped red onion, finely chopped parsley and Worcestershire. You can also add a little hot sauce if you like. Chill.


Melt a boatload of butter in an ovenproof skillet and gently place the chilled fish cakes into the butter. Brown one side and then gently, gently use a spatula and large fork or another spatula to flip the over. Once the second side is browned, put the pan in a 300° oven until heated through. Add lemon quarters and the tartar sauce and your favorite sides. A great Saturday nite supper, especially for a snowy weekend!