Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Happy Birthday, Lila!

My new buddy, Lila, turned 4 this week!!! Hip, Hip, Hooray!! for Lila!!

The Birthday Girl!

Dad (Ken), Lila, and Mom (Lisa)

Lila and me with the birthday cake I made for her. (banana sweetened, whole grain and organic! She has not had a birthday cake before now due to food sensitivities. I was really happy to make one that would not drive her crazy!)

Lisa, her mom, and I picked blueberries up on Weir Hill. There were so many of them! So sweet and tart at the same time.

The weather here is too disgusting to mention. So I won't. So there! Yesterday was a fun day for me. I took over by boss' personal chef gig for her while she is in Manhattan taking a Natural Gourmet Baking class. I had a blast doing the cooking and an even better time meeting Mrs. M., an elderly woman who lives on Brattle Street in Cambridge. We sat and chatted for a good long while. She reminds me of my own Gran, who has passed, and we talked about a great many things. I love her old and wonderful home, too.

Today is dog walking day and I shall resemble a melted candle upon my return home. I shall sit in front of the AC unit with a glass of Chardonnay and watch Ghost Hunters, feeling the salt crystals form on my skin. Then a cool shower and slipping into my new 400 count cotton sheets (butter yellow even!) which I got ON SALE!!! A complete full size set for, get this, $29.00!!! Very High Count Keen!

Your Daily Dose of Cool Things:

Click Here For: Comfy Collars!

Your Daily Dose of Wonderful Design:

Click Here for Fossil Wash basin

Your Daily Dose of Inspiring Words:

Image Thanks to Kevin Fields

Those who dwell, as scientists or laymen, among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life. - Rachel Carson

Your Daily Dose of Wicked-Good Food:

Amaranth "polenta" with charred peppers, cilantro and a Lime-aid sauce

1/2 cup amaranth
1 cup water
(cooks as you would rice)

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup grated cheese ( I used romano )
2 red peppers
1 bunch of cilantro
1 can lime-aid (frozen juice section)

After the amaranth has cooked, add the cheese, salt and pepper and stir, then spread it on a cookie sheet and place it in the fridge to cool and stiffen. When cool, cut rounds out with a cookie cutter. Amaranth is very gloopy, so you may want to dredge the rounds with a small amount of flour before putting them in the oil. Heat the oil in a skillet and brown the rounds until crisp, turning to brown both sides. Drain on paper towel or paper bag. (or coffee filters!)

Place the peppers on a skewer and hold them to flame (grill, stove or otherwise...hell, these days just put them on the roof of your car) until the skin begins to blacken. Attempt to do so evenly on all sides, then place the whole peppers in a paper bag for 5-10 minutes to soften. For this recipe I did not peel off the char. Slice into thick strips.

Plate the amaranth polenta with fresh cilantro leaves between each layer, placing the sliced pepper on the plate. Sever with a small dish of lime-aid (or make your own with lime juice and sugar or honey). There is enough oil in the polenta that when tasted with the lime aid it forms a lovely "dressing" in your mouth.