Sunday, February 7, 2016

time well spent

I have heard it been said that we have had a mild winter, I will say that it has been wonderful, simply wonderful.  I have no problem with it being mild with the exception of the flowers are seriously confused.  The Daffodils and Hyacinths started to peak through the earth in December.  As of today the Daffodils are about 2.5" out of the ground.  Weather aside, I have enjoyed this winter immensely.  I love the comfort of being in a warm house while it is cold out, snuggling, hanging, and doing things inside.  I am sad to admit it may be true that I have not been experimenting with different cuisines, I have been indulging my husband's love of soup. 

I have been pondering my love of blue and wondering if it is all possible that I could go with another color.  For as long as I can remember blue has always been my favorite.  This love has led me down a rabbit hole of sorts.  I am not necessarily open to other colors.  If the choice is between blue, another color other than black, the blue wins hands down.  If it is black, it depends on the situation, but usually I always pick blue.  When I was exposed to the wonderful world of cast iron, I had at that point only had used the everyday black cast iron.  My Mom and Mor always used theirs, Mor could make Danish Pancakes on hers, two at a time....yes she did two pans at the same time, pretty damn impressive.  Onions were always fried in cast as was most, if not all, of everything Mor ever prepared.  My Mom was just as cast iron pan friendly.  There was up to that point no reason for any other color to think about, cast iron was always black.  When we decided that we wanted a dutch oven it had to be enamel cast iron.  We only entertained two marques...Le Creuset & Staub.  Both brands had great write-ups, their owners were uber pleased with them, and all things being equal, it was a tie.  Le Crueset won, but they only won because we could go to the outlet store to buy a second or even an oven that went to the store on clearance.   The brand was decided, the place to buy decided, the only thing left was the color.  I made the choice, it would be Cobalt Blue.   Then I ran into a problem, there was a choice; Cobalt Blue or Indigo.  The Indigo was perfection, the perfect blue, my sweet favorite blue.  The Cobalt never stood a chance.  Then we faced a new problem: did we want a round or oval.  Thank goodness I never had to make the choice.  The store manager made us a deal that blew us away, the Indigo was being discontinued, and we got both.  We went home with a Indigo 7.5 Qt. round and a Cobalt 7.5 Qt. oval.   Then I found the Coastal Blue....   Then I found Staub on clearance..... I am a mess

Le Creuset Indigo & Coastal Blue on our Cobalt Blue BlueStar

While I have been making the soup, And was busy grilling.  For our dining pleasure we indulged in the most yummy grilled Lamb Chops.  Phew are they delicious...
The thought of having Chicken Soup without cheese leaves me wanting.  Now that I have been perfecting my Matzo Balls, I can't get enough.  That means the "So Secret" Cheese blend has to be grated very often.

As always, Wednesday is Macaroni.  I had been saving Stuffed Rigatonis for a bit, I was thinking about adding them to soup because I think they are so hearty.  I decided that they should be served with Meat Sauce.  You can't forget the cheese either.

Breakfast was next on the menu.  Ham, eggs, potatoes, and fruit.  It isn't even the weekend....

I thought I would channel my MIL, Mrs. Gallo, to make a chicken dish that my Mom & Dad have had a hankering for.  Chicken Cacciatore.  I love her recipe, I once went so far and said that mine was as good as her's.  Yeah I got the look of death...

And took all the chicken off the bones.  We split the sauce into one meal for 5 of us with the meat.   I had three Qts. of Cacciatore Sauce sans meat for the freezer, two went to my Mom & Dad, and one went back home with us. 

I have planned on making two soups this weekend; Chicken and Split Pea.   I went into the freezer to get something, spotted chicken for curry, and decided on making Thai Coconut Chicken Soup with mushrooms, lemon grass, lime leaves, and ginger.  And really likes this soup and I have not made it in a long time, so I guess it was time.  I did mix it up a wee bit, I made Jasmine rice and added it to the bowl before the soup.  Also, I put the lemon grass, lime leaves, and ginger into the immersion/tea ball.  It was amazing, truly delicious.  It was a game changer, I really can't believe how much it added to it.  Hands down the best part was that And did not have to chomp on lemon grass, get shredded lime leaves in his teeth, and bite down on ginger.  I love a plan that works out.  I enjoyed it immensely.  And did too.

I am looking forward to Spring.

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