Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Sticky Situation

Show of hands: who knew March 28 is Something on a Stick Day?  I sure didn't until I read about it on Yumsugar this morning.  The recipes for things like Greek Salad Bites and Key Lime Popsicles put me in a summer mood even on a chilly, overcast day in Newport, RI.

What's your favorite food on a stick?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Tucson 2012: Local Food Ad

I deeply love bacon, but this is just... disturbing.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Kon Tiki Tucson

When I heard about the Kon Tiki in Tucson, AZ, it immediately went on my list of things I must do on this trip.  Fortunately, my friends here are willing to indulge my taste for kitsch.

The awesome starts outside the front door.  There is even a sign that says "Welcome to paradise."

The Kon Tiki was built in 1963 to look like a Polynesian temple and has never been updated.  The kitsch factor is high.  IN AN AWESOME WAY. 

The menu had things like Monkeys on a Stick which were actually beef kabobs, and there was an impressive selection of "Polynesian" cocktails designed to get you pie-eyed in one sip.  I opted for a virgin pina colada; BFF in the background there had a frozen mudslide.  She grew up during the depression and is therefore made of tougher stuff than I am.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Eating Well: Rice, Cheddar, and Spinach Pie

I find that it's always good to have a couple of recipes in my repertoire for dinners I can make with staples in my kitchen on days when I come home tired and the cupboard looks bare.  Usually these revolve around pasta, so it was nice to find a recipe for Rice, Cheddar, and Spinach Pie in the latest issue of Eating Well magazine (you can find the recipe here).

A made the pie with white rice because it was what I had on hand, but the next time I'll go with the brown rice they suggest or a blend of rices such as Rice Select's Royal Blend.  It was good with white rice, but I think a blend would give it just that little bit of extra pizzaz.

I added 2 teaspoons of dried basil with the spinach because it seemd to me that no herbs whatsoever in the recipe was crazy talk.  I also seasoned with salt and pepper to taste because I have low blood pressure and actually feel better with salt in my diet -- just the opposite of most of America, I guess.  The story of my life.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Good Seasons

An interesting side effect of having two blogs is that my friends and family are very aware of my likes, dislikes, and what is going on in my life.  They know about my culinary disasters and ask me serious questions about butter.

It still surprised me, though, when my mom arrived at my door one day bearing gifts of salt.  She had read about my fleur de sel wishes and celtic salt dreams, so she decided to get me an early birthday gift -- a Cole & Mason salt mill, light grey celtic sea salt, and fleur de sel. 

Apparently, Cole & Mason is the go-to brand for salt and pepper mills.  I can see why, since the "award winning" mechanism on the thing works great.  The salts are delicious -- salty, but without the sharp bite of regular table salt and kosher salt.  I feel like food cooked with the sea salt or finished with fleur de sel just tastes better.  I'm getting very spoiled.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Too Much of a Good Thing

I made a couple of naive assumptions when I was making mushroom-barley soup last weekend.  Naive assumption #1: that I could cook barley in the soup water as you might do with pasta or rice.  Naive assumption #2: that I should throw in extra barley since I wasn't using any beef.

Apparently, barley will expand indefinitely to absorb all available water.  To shift metaphors, I theorize that if I threw 2 cups of barley into the ocean near my house, in an hour and fifteen minutes the condition of the Atlantic would be such that I could walk to Paris.  And while that's a tempting idea, I'm pretty sure it would disrupt shipping and we know how cranky people on cruise ships get when their trips don't go as planned.

I've been eating barley all week.  Live and learn.