Sunday, October 31, 2010


I hope The Great Pumpkin brings you lots and lots of treats.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Happy Food-iversary!

I can't believe it's been a year since I posted my first sketch of the steamship round. It would be nice if I could take this opportunity to reflect on how I've grown as a person and matured and all that, but who am I kidding? No mature person would draw pictures of happy dancing cookies, high-diving tater tots, or clams wearing tool belts.

I look forward to another year of drawing and writing whatever insane, food-related stuff comes to mind. I think I can do it. After all, I have made no progress whatosever in the maturity department and a girl's gotta eat.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Paying My Dues

Team Maria consists of a handful of people who are fans of my blogs, and who believe in my creativity despite a great deal of evidence that I don't have much of a knack for making something of myself.

I received notice from the Team Maria President (who is also my career manager) that annual dues needed to be paid by today. They've gone up since last year, which is either a sign of the economy or a sign that I'm more of a drama queen than he aniticpated when he took on a part-time job with no salary.

Here you go, J. I hope you like anchovies.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Table Art

It's funny. I hardly ever invite anyone over, and yet I seem to be starting to collect serving pieces. These appealed to me because of their clean lines and modern shapes. The four-bowl piece reminds me of the funky shapes in "atomic age" serving pieces, and the bowl with the cutout is reminiscent of 1950s boomerang shapes. I got them both for a song at TJ Maxx.

Now that I know the bowl is made by 10 Strawberry Street, a company that has one retail store in Florida and otherwise sells only to the restaurant industry, I think I'll go back and get another one. Then I guess one of these days I should probably have a party.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Soup Recipe! Now With 100% More Recipe!

The thing with me is, I'm pretty lazy. I love to cook, but I want to get as much as possible out of my time in the kitchen. This soup/stock combination is great because not only do I end up with a delicious and hearty soup, but I also get vegetable stock for my freezer - and it doesn't cost me a penny extra.

I feel like Sandra Lee right now, with a "Round-Two Recipe." But unlike Sandra, I didn't use any pre-made ingredients (except canned beans), my eyeshadow doesn't match my shirt, and my shirt doesn't match my kitchen decor. ( Actually, I'm not wearing any eyeshadow. I am wearing a shirt, though. Honest.)

Bean and Swiss Chard Soup

1 bunch swiss chard
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 cans white kidney (cannellini) beans, rinsed and drained
2 Tbsp. olive oil
salt and pepper

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

2. Prep swiss chard: Fill a bowl with water. Cut stems out of swiss chard, and rough chop the leaves. Place leaves in bowl of water and swish around to remove any dirt. Remove leaves to another bowl. Slice stems on the diagonal in matchstick pieces, rinse in the bowl of water and set aside.

3. When water in pot is boiling, place chard leaves in the pot and cook 2-3 minutes. Remove from the boiling water and drain. Repeat with stems. Leave pot of water on the back burner to make stock (recipe follows).

4. In another large pot or dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Saute the garlic in the oil for 1-2 minutes. Add drained beans, and then add water to cover beans by about one inch (or a combination of stock and water if you already have the stock going). Stir.

5. Take about half the bean mixture out of the pan and process in a blender until smooth. Return to pot. Bring bean mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and add the swiss chard. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then allow to simmer for about 5 minutes or until heated through (add a little extra water if needed).

Bonus Vegetable Stock

Water used to blanch swiss chard
1 carrot, cut in 4 or 5 pieces
any veggies on hand such as rough chopped celery, tomato tops, bottom or top of an onion, garlic bits from the garlic press, other greens you may need to get rid of. (Avoid broccoli or any other very strong-flavored vegetables.)

Bring everything to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for an hour. Allow to cool, strain the solids and refrigerate or freeze.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Work With Me

The most coveted dessert of my childhood.

I've recently had a few of my gentle readers ask me for clarification on things I've posted links within the text to explain. In the interest of brevity, I try to keep my explanations simple and let other sites do the heavy lifting if my readers need further information.

This only works if you, my friends, actually click on the links. I'm not saying you must click on every single link, but I carefully choose sites I believe are relevant, interesting, and helpful.

Like this. (Actually, that one is a special shout-out to Sam. Come home soon, girl!)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Pretty Cool

I've been thinking about this Mobile Foodie Survival Kit ever since I saw it in InStyle magazine. (What? It advertised "10 Style Rules You Should Break" and I needed to know what they were. It turns out I'm breaking them all, but not necessarily in a good way.)

I'm captivated by the idea of having herbs and spices on the go. Or maybe I'm captivated by the idea of needing herbs and spices on the go: spending the month of July in the Hamptons, or renting a condo in Barbados for a week in February. Or most exciting of all, being on an Everest expedition and needing a little wasabi to perk up my dehydrated yak.

The whole kit is about the size of a book, so I could easily fit both it and my NOOK into my luggage and be ready for all literary and culinary emergencies that may arise. I'd be like a slightly nerdy superhero.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Spaghettification: Definition 2

I totally made that up.

For Spaghettification: Definition One, click here