August 29, 2011

Tuesdays At The Table - Mozzarella Sticks

Hey gang!!!  Did all my East Coast girls make it through Irene?  We got hour upon hour of whipping wind and rain.  There's a tree down in the back yard...but despite some flickering, the electricity never really went off on me.  I'm really lucky.  I hope you all faired as well as I did.  A big "thank you" to all my loves that checked in on me via Twitter and email.  :-)

I'm a sucker for mozzarella sticks.  I don't have them often (hello, calories!!), and the last time I tried to make them at home, I ended up with a pool of mozzarella in a pan.  Luckily, I stumbled across a breading cheat on Taste of Home.  Soooo yummy!


Mozzarella Sticks

12 pieces string cheese
12 egg roll wrappers
Oil for frying
Marinara sauce

Place a piece of string cheese near the bottom corner of one egg roll wrapper (keep remaining wrappers covered with a damp paper towel until ready to use). Fold bottom corner over cheese. Roll up halfway; fold sides toward center over cheese. Moisten remaining corner with water; roll up tightly to seal. Repeat with remaining wrappers and cheese.

In an electric skillet, heat 1/2 in. of oil to 375°. (NOTE: I don't use a thermometer.  I heat the pan on medium high for a few minutes and then test with a drop of water to make sure that the oil is hot.)

Fry sticks, a few at a time, for 30-60 seconds on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve with marinara sauce.
What's cooking in your kitchen?

August 25, 2011

"It's OK" Thursday... Week 2

Yep, I'm linking up with the fabulous Neely and Amber again for "It's OK" Thursday.  You should too!!

Its Ok Thursdays

It's OK...

...To be a little nervous about Hurricane Irene.  Boston hasn't gotten a good hurricane in yeeears!  Plus, I need to make sure that both my house and my parents house are ready for it.
...That a teeny, tiny part of me is excited for a hurricane too.
...To be doing all the post-op care for my mom.  Sure, I wish people would offer to help.  Yeah, I wish that just about anyone would ask if I'm handling it all.  But, it gives me a sense of accomplishment too.  I'm up by 6 AM and don't get to sit down until she goes to bed at night.
...That I kinda fell off the face of the earth.  No texting, no calling people, no Facebook, etc. I just don't have time right now.
...To be days behind in responding to blog comments.  I promise I'll get there!!
...To be addicted to Toaster Strudels right now.  Especially the strawberry ones.
...To have missed the boat on Erin Condren planners.  If someone could explain their brilliance to me - I'd be grateful!
...That watching shows "onDemand" has become one of my favorite things lately.  I screamed with joy when I found out that both Samuel and Damian won The Glee Project last night at 2 AM. :-)

What's OK with you this week?

August 22, 2011

Tuesdays At The Table - Portobello Mushroom Pasta

Happy Tuesday, ladies!!  Did everyone have a wonderful weekend?  I haven't left the house since I'm feeling a little stir-crazy.  On the bright side, mom is home and resting comfortable...considering. The first time she's allowed to leave her house is next Tuesday.  Hopefully, my brother & dad will step in and start helping me any. second . now.  or I am going to go absolutely nuts being stuck in the house for the next week too.

Anyway...  I made my parents portobello mushroom pasta for dinner.  Unfortunately, I don't like mushrooms - but it doesn't stop me for making fungus based foods for others.  :-)


Portobello Mushroom Pasta

6-8 oz. portobello mushrooms (rough dice)
1/2 onion (fine dice)
1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
1/2 cup white wine
6 tbsp butter/margarine
4 cloves garlic (fine dice)
1 cup chicken stock (or vegetable)
1 tsp rosemary
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
pasta (cook per box instructions)

In a large saute pan, melt half the butter.  When melted, add the mushrooms, onions and tomatoes.  Cook on medium for 8-10 minutes until the onions are translucent and the mushrooms get tender.  Add the garlic, stir and cook for a minute or so.  Bring the heat up to medium-high. Add the wine and let reduce by half.  Then add the chicken stock, rosemary, crushed red pepper, salt, pepper and remaining butter & let reduce until you have about 1/2 to 3/4 cup fluid surrounding your vegetables.  Combine your cooked pasta and vegetables together.  Add the cheese, give a quick stir and serve.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

August 18, 2011

"It's OK" Thursday...

This is my first time linking up with the lovely Neely and Amber for "It's OK" Thursday.  You should go visit her and the others that linked up.  :-)

Its Ok Thursdays

It's OK...

....That someone on Twitter commented that the blog world has become oversaturated, and I completely disagree. I like discovering new people, and feel everyone has something to say.

....That I haven't slept more than 2 hours per night for the past week.  Sleep is over-rated, right?

....That I won't see my house for a month.  Taking care of my mom while she recovers from knee replacement surgery is worth it.

....That I'm super excited that my back steps will be replaced this week.  Bye, bye brick.  Hello, flagstone!  Other home repairs are just gonna have to wait until I'm back at my house.

....That someone keeps baking banana bread for me, and as soon as she leaves - I have to throw it away.  I don't have the heart to tell her that she is, in fact, the worst cook I've ever met.

....That I didn't realize until 9 o'clock last night that I hadn't had anything to eat of drink at all yesterday. 

....That either my Kindle or knitting needles are in my hands at all times.  I have fabulously strong fingers because of it! :-)

What's OK with you today?

August 15, 2011

Tuesdays At The Table - Hasselback Potatoes

Happy Tuesday!  Did everyone have a good weekend?  Mine was rather quiet.  While my friends were off camping, me & my needles 'o fire got two scarves done.  :-) Mom is having knee surgery Tuesday morning.  If anyone has a few extra minutes to send some good thoughts - I'd appreciate it!

We've well documented that I like Pinterest, right?  Right.  I saw these great looking potatoes, and decided on Monday that I just had to try them.  They came out GREAT!!!! 


Hasselback Potatoes

6 Medium Size Potatoes
2 - 3 Cloves Garlic, thinly sliced
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
Butter (a few pats)
Sea Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Preheat the oven to 425˚F. Put the potato on a chopping board, flat side down. Start from one end of the potato, cut almost all the way through, at about 3 to 4 mm intervals.

Arrange the potatoes in a baking tray and insert the garlic in between the slits. Scatter some butter on top of each potato. Then drizzle the olive oil and sprinkle some sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Bake the potatoes for about 40 minutes or until the potatoes turn crispy and the flesh is soft.

Don't mind the tinfoil.  I didn't feel like scrubbing a baking pan.  :-)

What's cooking in your kitchen?

August 09, 2011

Summer Loves

I'm loving an awful lot this summer!

My beloved Red Sox. :-)

True Blood.  Every season it veers just a little more off course from the books...but that's OK.  The show is awesomeness!
Pomegranate Raspberry Iced Tea and Lemonade.  I fuzzy pink heart the Starbucks version of Passion Fruit Iced Tea Lemonade, but it just isn't realistic to be there multiple times a day.  So I make tea and lemonade at home, pour it over a nice big glass of ice and voila!  Wallet-friendly yumminess.
This is such a great new show.  Honestly, I love all of USA networks summer shows - Covert Affairs, Necessary Roughness, In Plain Sight, Royal Pains. 

Sarah McLachlan's version of Blackbird.  It's a true Beatles classic, and it's been done by some great artists - Eddie Vedder, Bobby McFerrin, CSN (Crosby, Stills & Nash), Carly Simon - to name a few, but this version just speaks to me.

What are you loving this summer?

August 08, 2011

Tuesdays At The Table - Italian Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

Happy Tuesday!! It is mega humid here I've been focusing on finding quick, easy recipes (but without making the same cycle of foods over and over again) that mean I'm away from air conditioning for a short a time as possible.


I found this sandwich at Taste of Home, and it is so yummy!!

Italian Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

4 slices Italian bread

4 slices provolone cheese (1 ounce each)
4 slices tomato
4 bacon strips, cooked and halved
2 teaspoons minced fresh basil or 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
2 tablespoons Italian salad dressing

Top two slices of bread with a slice of cheese; layer with tomato, bacon, basil and remaining cheese. Top with remaining bread. Brush dressing over outsides of sandwiches.

In a large skillet over medium heat, toast sandwiches for 2-3 minutes on each side or until cheese is melted. Makes two sandwiches.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

Random Thoughts...

It has been such a fun weekend.  :-)  Between the fan-freaking-tabulous linky party that Mrs. Monologues and Fabulous But Evil threw on Friday to today's moviefest...I'm a happy girl.

Don't mind me, but I'm hauling out the bullet points!
  • I think that Blogger is going to disown me if I follow any more blogs.  I blame the aforementioned linky party!  It's a good problem to have, and give a huge "hiiiii girls" to all my new followers.
  • I'm almost 100% sure that I'll be opening an Etsy shop to get my knitting and quilting projects out there for peeps to purchase.  Anybody have any good name ideas?!?!
  • Saturday was girl's night.  Seafood, drinks, music, drinks, oceanside, drinks.  Did I mention drinks?!?!  Really, we had sooo much fun.  I wish we all got to see each other more often.
  • Which brings me to two questions. Or maybe two series of questions.  1 - When did plaid make such a comeback?  Half the people on the dancefloor (ie. the men) were wearing plaid.  Did I miss the memo?  2 - Why did one of these plaid clad men feel the need to stand with his back to where my friend was sitting (ie. his butt next to her head) and fart?  Multiple times!!  Does he not have manners? Does he not realize that the friend he passed gas next to is the one who would freak out at him?  (She didn't..but it came close!)
  • One of my besties announced on Friday that she and her hubby are having a GIRL!!!!  This is babe number two for their family, and I'm so thrilled for them!
  • I spent most of Sunday on the couch watching movies with my pups.  After a late night, spending a rainy day on the couch was fabulous!
  • The itch to get a new tattoo is coming on.  And I think I know what I want to get... a line drawing of Picasso's dachshund, Lump.

How was your weekend?

August 05, 2011

True Life: I'm a {General} Blogger

Hi.  I'm Cole. :-)

A little about me:

I'm from the suburbs of Boston.  I live in a little town that's known for being the home of the Toll House cookie (and it smelled heavenly...until the place burned down when I was little).

I thrive on useless trivia, caffeine and road trips.

I'm craft-tastic.  I also make up words!

I love to cook!!

I love my fur-kids.  To me, they're short, fuzzy children who don't speak clearly.



Sarcasm is my second language.

To me, there isn't a distinction between IRL and blog friends.  If you're my friend, you're my friend.  Period.  :-)

I could write forever about absolutely nothing.  But I won't bore you. Yet...

Slip, Slip, Knit

A while back I started on my first pair of socks.  Well...the sock got lost and I gave up on socks for a while in favor of baby blankets.  (Can I even tell you how many people I know that are currently pregnant?!?!)

I'm back at it.  Here's my first sock production.  :-)

{Photos taken by Kristin, with my humble thanks!}

In other news...I'm thinking of opening an Etsy shop for all my knitting and quilting.  I'm open to any feedback.  Good idea/bad idea?  Would you be interested?

August 01, 2011

Tuesdays At The Table - Scallion Pancakes

Happy Tuesday!!!  I have a confession for you.  I'm in the midst of a scallion pancake addiction.  I hadn't tasted these delightfully delicious pancakes until one of my favorite people made me try one during a Twilight-induced, junk food and wine & champagne punch, girl's night last year. I ordered them off the local Chinese food menu until I realized exactly how easy they were to make.


Scallion Pancakes

2 cups flour
1 cup boiling water
Sesame oil
1/2 cup chopped scallions

Mix the flour and boiling water in a bowl, using a wooden spoon to form a ball.  Take a quarter of the dough and place onto a sturdy, lightly floured surface.  Roll the dough into a flat circle.

Drizzle some sesame oil onto the pancake, smearing it around so it forms a thin layer and sprinkle the chopped scallions on top.

Roll the pancake up into a long log and then roll it up so it looks like a big cinnamon bun.

Sprinkle a bit more flour on your rolling surface and then roll the big bun out into a pancake again.  Double rolling means tasty scallion bits sandwiched between lots of thin layers of dough. It’s okay if it splits and scallions come spilling out, less pretty doesn't mean less tasty!

Heat some sesame oil in a pan and cook the pancake on medium heat until browned on both sides (about 3 minutes per side). Cut into triangles and chow down.

Repeat with the rest of the dough.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

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