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Tag Archives: garlic

Truman Capote Was Not Invited to Dinner

How about a cooking post instead of my usual Non-Sequitur Thursday.  I make it a statement instead of a question, because I am making the post regardless.  It is a little non-sequitur-ish, though, because I made the stuff on Sunday, but Steven is heating it up as I type for tonight’s meal.

I had some Dino’s Sausage, made in Utica, NY, just to give this post a little local flavor (see what I did there?).  I put it in a frying pan and chopped up an onion to throw in with it.  Then I peeled and crushed up a few cloves of garlic, purchased at the Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival in Little Falls (more local flavor!).  I set the timer to let the garlic breathe for 15 minutes.  Just as an aside, it is a lot easier to wait for garlic to breathe than it is for wine.  Ahem, not that I drink a lot of wine.

After adding the garlic, I just kept stirring and breaking up the sausage till it was almost done.  Then I added a can of diced tomatoes and a can of mushroom pieces and stems.  I stirred in some basil, oregano and a very few hot peppers (I didn’t want to make Steven’s bald spot sweat).  I often put in a can of tomato paste at this point, but Steven thought it sounded lighter without.

We had the sauce over angel hair pasta, my favorite.  I put copious amounts of grated cheese on mine.  It was delicious.

It was just as good reheated tonight (I paused in my typing to eat midway through the second paragraph; could you tell?).  Is this blog post as good as some of the other nonsense I have been typing in lately (I reference Truman Capote:  “That’s not writing, that’s typing”)?  Only my readers can judge.  Some people say “Don’t judge,” but in this case, I don’t mind. Happy Thursday, everyone.

 

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Cooking with Wine Tasting

Friday Food does not have the same appeal as Saturday or Sunday Supper.  Yet, I feel I would like to make a cooking post today.  I had meant to do a Running Commentary, because I had an excellent run this morning (I posted a Facebook status of “THAT is how a run is SUPPOSED to feel!”), but, you know, things happen.

I was supposed to be away this weekend, but those plans were derailed by a stomach bug my husband, Steven, is currently suffering.  He has not wanted to eat much, so I thought a pot of homemade chicken soup would help.  Accordingly, I took some chicken out of the freezer. It was two thigh sections, which is a good dinner for two people when baked and served with a vegetable.  I have also found that it will also make a good pot of soup

I put the chicken on to boil about 3 p.m., when I was doing laundry and waiting till it was time for a wine tasting at Valley Wine and Liquor in Herkimer, NY (where I live).  After it had boiled a while, I used a slotted spoon to scoop some of the brown crud off the top.  I don’t think the brown stuff seriously degrades the taste of the soup, but I skim off what I can.  I was waiting for my friend Kim to pick me up for the wine tasting.  Eventually I got tired of waiting and had a small glass of white wine we had on hand (don’t judge me; I wasn’t driving).  I also thought I should progress further on the soup so peeled and crushed some garlic.  I turned off the burner under the chicken; I figured it was cooked through, and I did not want it on when I left for the wine tasting.

It was after right after this that Kim texted me that she was ready to go to the wine tasting, so I did not bother setting the timer for 15 minutes (to let the garlic breathe, remember? I’ve talked about that before).  I figured we’d be gone at least that long.   And we were.  I came home with two boxes of wine, one red, one white.  Yum!  I may do a blog post about the tasting (I have been seriously remiss in not making more posts about the wine tastings I attend).  I poured myself a glass of red and continued to cook.

I pulled the pieces of chicken out of the broth and put in the garlic.  I sliced a yellow onion, put it in the broth and turned the burner back on.   I took the chicken off the bones and put it in the broth too.  After a while I will add some frozen vegetables.  Probably some spinach (Steven only likes it in soup, dip or sauce), maybe some broccoli or corn; I’ll see what’s in the freezer.  And I will cook some pasta, probably ditalini.  Yum!

For you wine snobs out there, I will no doubt switch to white with my chicken soup.  I do not want to injure anybody’s sensibilities unnecessarily.  Anyways, this is my Lame Post Friday post for the week.  I hope you are all having a good supper and enjoying the beverage of your choice.

 

In the Mood for Monsters

“Ya wanna see my bug collection?”

I need a little Tucker to cheer me up.  This is my friend Tucker in our recent murder mystery, Donate to Murder.  He was very funny.  I hit “New Post” wanting to make this a Monday Moan post, but it’s just a mood and there is no reason to inflict it on my readers (although I know I do sometimes).  So I thought a Monstrous Monday was in order.  When I went to my Media Library (you say “Media Library” in a pretentious tone of voice), this little gem caught my eye. I do feel a little cheerier.  I wonder what other monsters I can find to pep up my post.

Mmmmm… garlic.

I thought I’d throw in a little garlic first, in case I include any vampires.  This is from the Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival in Little Falls, NY, last September.  Good times, good garlic.

“Curses! I forgot my sunscreen!”

It is ironic that the sign says “NO SMOKING” when Blackula is smoking hot.  I may have made that observation before, but even the best of us repeat themselves sometimes.

Christopher Lee is the favorite Dracula of many.

I do love a Hammer horror film.

Oh, he is a fine, scary dude!

You knew I was going to include Nosferatu, didn’t you?  I hope nobody minds a vampire-heavy Monstrous Monday.  After I put in the garlic, I felt kind of obligated. This has been, I admit, another foolish post. In my defense, I am working hard on the next mystery, A Trivial Murder.  More information on that will be forthcoming!  Happy Monday, everyone.

 

Picture This: a Garlic Festival!

Eat, Stink and Be Merry!  Those are words to live by!  My husband Steven and I did that today when we went to the Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival in Little Falls, NY.  I brought my Tablet and took a few pictures, which I will now share.

I wanted to get at least one crowd shot.

This is one of the most popular events in the area.  I confess, I was not into a crowd scene today, but one does not like to miss the Garlic Festival (one being me, of course).

One of the more decorative displays of garlic braids.

Full disclosure:  I did not purchase any garlic.  I have a braid of local garlic from T & J’s Fruits and Vegetables in Herkimer, and I have not been cooking that much lately anyways.  That did not stop me from sampling a lot of stuff. Yum!

I took a picture of this booth, because I liked the Halloween table cloth.

I like horseys (isn’t that how you spell horseys? My computer doesn’t seem to think so).

We did not go on a horse-drawn wagon ride, although I went last year with my friend, Kim.

I had some garlic fudge, and Steven enjoyed a piece of chocolate-covered bacon.

Of course we stopped at my friend, Margaret’s booth, the So Sweet Candy Cafe.  My sister, Cheryl, was minding the shop on Varick Street.

I guess I’m heavier on pictures than words today, but at least I gave a brief shout-out to the Festival.

 

Saturday Clam Sauce

This will be a quick cooking post before I get back to enjoying my Saturday.  I must admit, it has been a largely wasted day, and never mind why, because people who go on about their health woes are tiresome (how’s that for a little passive-aggressive whining?).  I just about managed to get the dishes done by the time Steven got home shortly after six.  I had not planned anything for supper.  Suppressing my desire to send out for a sub or Chinese, I suggested red clam sauce or maybe eggs.  Steven opted for red clam sauce and I went to work.

First, OF COURSE, I crushed up some garlic and set it to breath for fifteen minutes.  It was from the bunch I purchased at the Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival in Little Falls, NY this past September, just to give the post a little local flair.  At first I said, “I’ll only do three cloves.  I won’t go crazy with the garlic.”  Not a minute later I said, “I’ll go crazy with the garlic,” and put in the entire bulb, which was not very big anyways.  Steven did not comment; he trusts me when it comes to cooking in general and garlic in particular.

I put the dishes away while the garlic cooked in olive oil.  That’s the kind of multi-tasking I can handle.  Incidentally, I forgot to mention that I was cooking with wine, a little 19 Crimes red blend, one of my favorites.  I soon added a can of minced clam with the liquid to the garlic.  I let that boil for a little bit before adding a small can of tomato sauce.  I took a can of mushrooms and drained its liquid into the sauce can, to get the last of the sauce without adding too much more liquid to the whole.  I had told Steven I was not going to include tomato paste, that it would be a thin clam sauce.

Basil and oregano were the only spices I used.  I would have put in a few hot peppers, but I left those outside, where I had been sprinkling them over my container garden to deter squirrels.  Note to self:  purchase more hot peppers.  I considered adding tomato paste anyways but decided to wait and see if the sauce cooked down.  Soon it was time to put on water for pasta.  Ziti rigati, which was all we had besides some angel hair pasta.  Further note to self: purchase more pasta.

The sauce turned out pretty good.  I added salt, pepper and grated cheese before devouring.  Steven added salt and pepper.  He also had a large piece of bread and butter, an extra thick crust on a loaf of Spano’s hard crust Italian.  This adds another local bit, because Spano’s is in Utica, NY.  I am Mohawk Valley Girl!

 

Soup’s On!

I make my blog post while waiting for the water to boil.  I am daringly making my cooking post before I actually taste what I am cooking.  I’m just taking it for granted that will be OK.  Have I ever steered me wrong?  Well, not with cooking, at any rate.

Steven called me at work and suggested soup for dinner.   He said there was sausage in the freezer. I asked if we had a can of diced tomatoes.  I undertook to come up with something with what we have on hand.

I started, as I often do, with chopping an onion and putting it on to cook.  Since this will be soup, I put it in a pot instead of the cast iron frying pan.  As another innovation, I used a can of beer instead of olive or canola oil.  I figure if you can cook stuff in wine, why not beer?  For another reason, I got a case of Hamm’s for The Tempest cast party (get it?  Actors are hams!) and it did not all get drunk.  While the onions cooked, I peeled and crushed some garlic, then set the timer for 15 minutes (remember? So it can reach its full cancer-fighting potential).

Then I put a load of laundry in.  I don’t usually believe in multi-tasking, but sometimes you can get away with it (running to check the soup as soon as I typed that).

After a while, I added sausage.  When that was nearly cooked, I put in the can of diced tomatoes and some water.  Once it was boiling, I put in some frozen spinach and spices.  Basil, oregano, parsley and Salt-Free All Purpose Seasoning from the So Sweet Candy Cafe (just to plug them again).  Then I put on water for Ditalini pasta.  The water boiled and I put in the pasta when I ran out to check the soup just now.

I make bold to hit publish before eating the soup, because I took a sip when I stirred it just now, and yum.

Hope to see you all on Lame Post Friday.

 

 

Scattered Saturday with No Vampires

Isn’t that an eye-catching title?  I just this minute thought of it, before I even wrote the post. I know, I know, as Truman Capote said, “That’s not writing, that’s typing.”  These days it seems I just sit at my computer, put my fingers on the keyboard and publish whatever spills out.  That is because I am a silly blogger not a Serious Writer.  But that is not what I meant to post about today.  I meant to give a brief overview of my activities for the day, then go back to enjoying my Saturday evening.  So here goes.

My dear husband, Steven, was ill yesterday.  I woke up this morning fearing I was ailing with the same.  Nevertheless, after ingesting some necessary coffee, I went running.  I had it in my head to make a Saturday Running Commentary post.  Remember when that was a thing?  Well, it may be again one weekend, but not today.  I spent most of the run feeling tired and wanting to stop.  However, I persevered. I’ve learned to do that when running, anyways.

Back home I thought I would write a few postcards, as I like to do on a Saturday morning.  I could walk to the post office once the window was open and purchase some postcard stamps, which naturally one runs out of when one make a habit of sending postcards every week, as I do.  Unfortunately, once I sat down with the postcards, I was hit with a wave of dizziness.  That was unpleasant.  I decided to go purchase the stamps when Steven left for work and write the postcards later today or Sunday morning.

Just before Steven left for work, the phone rang.  My friend Kim wanted me to go to the  Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival   in Little Falls.  Me, say no to garlic?  Or a festival in Little Falls? In fact, long time readers may remember that I have attended this festival every year for some time now (I believe I have written a few blog posts about it).  Yes, I felt dizzy.  So what?  Between my allergies and migraines, I rarely feel 100 percent.  If I can force myself to get through work when ill, I can damn well do something fun with a friend under similar conditions.

And it turned out I felt better when out in the fresh air.  Kim stopped by the post office with me, so I did get my stamps.  We had a great time at the Garlic Festival, and I purchased a bundle of garlic stalks, which I hung over the doorway where the vampire hangs (see picture on yesterday’s post for the vampire).  I’m not trying to antagonize the fellow; it was the only nail already stuck in my wall that was the proper height.  Maybe tomorrow I will post a picture, and do a proper blog post on the festival.

Leaving the festival, we went to The Old Barn Marketplace and Little Falls Cafe, at 6626 State Rt. 5.  What a great place!  I will for sure write more about that!

I have not done a whole lot since I got home, but I believe the movie-watching portion of my Saturday has arrived.  I’m thinking a viewing of Dracula is in order.   Having spent a good portion of the day sampling garlic and eventually purchasing a nice bunch, I do not think I will have anything to fear of vampires for a while.  Then again, I did say to the vendor who sold me the garlic that I was going to write a story about a vampire who loved garlic, just so that none of us could feel safe.

Happy Saturday, everybody!