Friday, January 27, 2012

"You put what? Where?" - My jalapeño mishap

I've never claimed to be a genius, but I certainly hope that I've learned a very important lesson in the wake of what happened the other night.

Let's put this in the Foible category, shall we?

Our friends Bonnie and Klaire came over the other night. After dinner, the girls went off to play in Lorelei's room and I started in on making the jalapeño salsa for the Huevos Picante recipe that I had posted the day before. I chopped the onions, smashed the garlic, and sliced up the chilis; no prob. I was sure to wash my hands well after handling the chilis, but I learned that I had failed miserably to rid my fingers of the flesh-searing chili oils when I scratched my nose; yes, the inside of my nose.

I may as well have jabbed a white hot poker in my nostrils. I could almost smell the nose hairs burning and I had no idea how to quell the pain. Bonnie saw my eyes swell with tears, then quickly soaked a paper towel with milk and shoved it up my nose. (What are friends for, right?) That worked for a second. But I needed more. NOW!

So what did my dumb ass do? I dipped two Q-Tips in vanilla yogurt and shoved those suckers up my nose. Yes, people, I was walking around the kitchen with dairy-laden swabs tickling my sinuses. Sexy, huh? I'm here to tell you, though; yogurt up your nose really works to take the pain of jalapeño oil away!

And then I touched my eye...


Yeah. I never claimed to be a genius.


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Huevos Picante (Freaking awesome eggs!!)

From time to time, one of the guys in the kitchen puts breakfast out for the staff to eat before a busy shift at the restaurant. One of my favorite dishes are these eggs that Javiere makes that are so tasty that, if I'm not careful, I totally gorge myself on. I finally asked him to show me how it's done and I can't wait to give it a try at home. It's wildly simple and REALLY freaking good.

Serves 4

for the sauce
5 fresh jalapeno, seeded
3 cloves of garlic
1 onion
1 tomato

for the eggs
2-3 eggs per person

Salted boiling water for cooking the peppers  
Vegetable oil for cooking up the eggs
Corn tortillas, heated over a flame (if you have a gas stove) or in the oven.

Boil the chilis, onion, tomato, and garlic in lightly salted water until they are cooked through, but not totally falling apart; about ten minutes or so. When they are ready, place the chilis and garlic in a blender or food processor with just enough of the cooking liquid to loosen the mixture and create a sauce. (Tip: while you're blending the chilis, add water little by little until you get the consistency of a thicker salsa.) Set aside.

Beat the eggs in a bowl. Then, heat the vegetable oil (enough to fill the pan by 1/4") in a sautee pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is just to the smoking point, pour in the beaten eggs.

They will puff up immediately and smell amazing! Stir gently until they are nearly cooked through then add the chili sauce.

Stir in the sauce, turn down the heat a bit, and let the eggs simmer for about five minutes in the chili goodness.

Serve them up with your heated tortillas and STAND BACK!! 'Cause I'm SO coming over for breakfast.

Thanks Javie!

Mom's Tip

This dish isn't all that low in fat, but it is a fantastic way to have a hearty meal that will stick to your ribs and keep you going all day. The texture of the eggs is much like meat and is very satisfying.


Monday, January 16, 2012

Keeping up with myself

There is something about this blog that I'm realizing in the new year; it's a challenge to keep it going. That, and it's making me realize that I'm getting stuck in a rut with my food.

(I tried to make a stir fry the other night just to switch it up a bit... FOIBLE!! I'm not sure how I screwed it up, but boy did I ever!! My stomach is still turning thinking about it. Eeesh!)

Then there's the fact that I am technologically challenged these days. My computer is so out of date that it takes forever for me to upload pictures, get them on the site, blah blah blah. It's just a frustrating process and so I don't do it.

There's also what I call 'Poking the Twitter Bear.' Maintaining a presence on Twitter to drum up readership takes time out of my day that I just can't seem to find. Maybe it's that I don't feel as witty as 140 characters can accommodate. Who knows.

And finally, (and most importantly) the time that I was spending on the blog I have had to take to look for a job. I've been waiting tables since I graduated in 2006. This has given me a lot of flexibility to travel and it's allowed me to be more present while Lorelei was little, but now the time has come that I have to sit my butt down behind a desk and make some 'real' money.

This post sounds a little glum, I'll admit, but truth be told, this year has been fantastic!! Professionally frustrating but personally amazing. More to come on that one.

Well, here's to me finding a job, finding inspiration for recipes, and finding the time to share it all with you. I do have something brewing for The Food-Minded Mama that I'll be announcing in the coming week or so, so check back soon to see what's up!

Happy New Year!


Friday, January 6, 2012


The best part of my Christmas Orphan, pot roast dinner (food-wise, at least) is the leftovers.

There is a reality that we, in the the 21st century, and especially in Seattle (apparently), have to deal with; if an invitation is extended, for the most part, it becomes an idea that floats out into the universe like a bubble that can either be taken or left to dangle and fizzle, even up to hours before the event. My bubble popped with a bang resulting in having only one attendee for my pot roast 'Christmas orphan' dinner. (He was a very welcome guest, for sure, but certainly couldn't help Lorelei and I consume all of what I had made for that night's meal.)

The subsequent plethora of leftover stewed meat has forced me to turn on my creative buttons and have resulted in some freaking good meals that in no way resemble the original!!

YAY me!!!

Yum #1

Pulled beef sandwiches

Leftover pot roast
Cheese of your choice (I used cheddar/gruyere mix)
Good bread like Great Harvest's Rosemary Diamante (the rosemary made this sandwich!)
One shallot , sliced into strips

- Heat the meat up in some water or beef stock then pull it apart into small strips, then drain a bit, leaving some of the moisture.
- Shred the cheese.
- Over medium heat, brown the shallots in olive oil.
- Lightly toast the bread

Notice the princess paper towels. Love that!!

Then, when all of the components are prepped, place the drained meat on the thick slice of toasted bread, top the meat with the shredded cheese and bake in a 350º oven (or toaster oven) until the cheese is good n' melty (Technical terms here, people. Highly technical!) Then, when your melty goodness is good n' melty, top it with your shallots and serve with a salad.

Yum #2

Beef Stroganoff (no pics... just too good to stop and shoot. Just imagine beige, creamy goodness, and you'll be ok.)

Leftover pot roast
1/2 White onion sliced into strips
Olive oil for sauteeing (about 2 tbsp)
1/2 cup Beef stock
1/2 cup Mushroom soup concentrate
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tsp white vinaigre
Salt & Pepper
Egg Noodles

Boil a big pot of salted water for the noodles.

Over medium-high heat, lightly sautee the onions. After three minutes or so, add the amount of meat that you want to have in your dish. Let it warm through a bit then add the beef stock. Allow the mix to simmer over medium heat for a bit, breaking apart the meat into thin strips. When the meat is separated, add the mushroom stock, sour cream, and vinaigre. Mix and simmer.

Meanwhile, cook your noodles. By the time they are done cooking, your meat and sauce will be ready. Drain well, serve noodles and top with  your sauce.

As Lorelei said, "Num mom!!!"
This is a good one...