Saturday, July 17, 2010

Little Surprises

A few weeks ago Randy's closest college friends dropped into Dallas to hang-out. I always enjoy seeing these guys because they have become like family. During a delicious brunch at Breadwinners we began to talk about what I plan to do once Katherine is born. Having "retired" from teaching I have begun to contemplate what lies in front of me (and us). Seeing that cooking is one of my favorite activities (and that I have already begun to record my original recipes) I mentioned that I would like to write a cookbook.
Rob, a fellow kindred spirit and foodie, brings up My Life in France. Now, the title was floating in my mind but I could not place the book itself. With a confused face I ask..."Who wrote it?" Ah yes...Julia Child (with Alex Prud'homme). At that point the conversation moved on to another topic.
And then it happened, a few days later, a little present was sitting in my mailbox. Yes, Rob sent me a copy of Ms. Child's memoirs, My Life in France.
So thank you Rob. Thank you for encouraging a dream and being a great friend.
Bon Appetit!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Pot Pie

Sitting at the community pool last week in 100 degree heat I had a strange craving. Yes, in the heat of summer I was craving fall comfort food. Have no fear, when I got home I started to do my research and came across a few recipes that inspired my version of Chicken Pot Pie. Ina Garten's became my base recipe. I went from there...
Out came my grocery (and new dishes) list and off I went. First stop, Williams Sonoma to purchase a set of four large double handled soup bowls--made of course to withstand baking. Next, I went to Market Street to select the ingredients that will be used to create the pot pie. As always, the initial prep time exceeded how long it should actually take. Nevertheless, it was relatively simple and I expect next time it will be a little bit easier and in the fall...

Chicken Pot Pie--revised
*This recipe makes a lot. If you're cooking for two, only bake two and save the left over filling and puff pastries for the next night. It's a great left over, but it's hard to reheat puff pastry.*

1. used rotisserie chicken- took meat off bones when got home. (Save the bones to make chicken stock out of it!)
2. used one onion (instead of two) and one stalk of celery
3. bought chicken stock, but still added bouillon cubes
4. added only one stick of butter
5. did not use fresh carrots
6. added frozen veggies- green beans, carrots, corn
7. added three russet potatoes, diced, not peeled. These potatoes need to be cooked slightly before added to the filling. I didn't do this, and they were too hard. So cook the potatoes!
8. did not make my own puff pastry, but bought it.
9. baked the pot pie at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes
Bon Appetit!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Summer Goals

Not since college have I done what I just did. It's taken me five years to sit down and just let my mind and heart put down on paper what my intentions are for a brief moment in time. Goals. I made a list of goals to encourage, and perhaps, push me to accomplish what I truly want to gain from life this summer. So, in the name of accountability (and inspiration for you?) I have listed my goals below.
Summer 2010 Goals
1. read the following books
The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Babery
Bella Tuscany by Frances Mayes
Hadrian and the Triumph of Rome by Anthony Everitt
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet
The Lady in the Palazzo: at Home in Umbria by Marlena de Blasi
Not Built in a Day: Exploring the Architecture of Rome by George H. Sullivan
2. not to waste my days
3. organize the shoes in my closet (with a box and picture of the pair)
4. begin my “Learn Italian at Home” lessons
5. go to the pool at least three days a week
6. make sauces, dishes that can be frozen in order to prep for baby arrival
7. keep my house clean
8. hang out with family and friends