Nov. 11th, 2011 10:48 pm
bunchofgrapes: (Brass and Cath - Dinner)
Last Christmas I decided I wanted a molcajete. Not sure why I wanted one but apparently I was on a quest to make great guacamole and I'd read some good reviews. I put it on the Christmas list my stepmother asks for every year but when Christmas rolled around, I was sad to find no molcajete. So, like any good girl who doesn't get what she asked for, I did a little research and ordered one from Williams Sonoma. I decided to order it and have it shipped because the thing weights a ton and I didn't really want to lug it around a mall. I mean seriously, drop it on your foot and you're looking at crushed bones. Also, Williams Sonoma's molcajete is already seasoned and believe me, the last thing you want is an unseasoned chunk of porous basalt because your guacamole will be full of black grit. Not good.

The first couple of batches of guacamole were just okay. Thankfully, no grit but the flavor wasn't amazingly yummy like I'd been led to believe. However, what I learned is that just like a cast iron skillet, the molcajete needs to be seasoned. And seasoning comes from whatever you've prepared in it because it's impossible to fully clean the thing. Sounds kind of gross but probably no worse than a really great cast iron skillet. So after about four or five batches, I can honestly say this thing makes some of the best guacamole I've ever had.

So, if you're looking for the perfect Christmas gift that will make your family say molcawhat?, doubles as a weapon, and makes FANTASTIC guacamole, then this little stone bowl is for you.
bunchofgrapes: (Paul G - glasses)
I've mentioned this before but I hate, hate, hate daylight savings time so I'm very happy when we go off it and I get my hour back. Sure it gets dark earlier. So what? That's what it's supposed to do. And pretty soon the snow on the ground will be providing extra light. Personally, I'd like to see what the actual cost savings are to this. Lights on in the morning or lights on in the evening (aren't they already on in the evening), does it really make a difference?

There was a pretty good earthquake in Oklahoma last night. Needless to say, most of my relatives were pretty freaked out about it however a couple of my friends thought it was pretty cool. When we had our 5.8 earthquake back in early August, I thought it was pretty cool too. I know that I would not feel that way if we had a lot of strong earthquakes but for my first one, it was definitely cool.

I made blueberry muffins with King Arthur whole wheat flour and xylitol. I probably should have added a little more oil than the recipe called for but they are very good and very healthy for me. That said, Red Velvet Cupcakes currently has a pumpkin cupcake with pumpkin cream cheese frosting that I really want to try.

My 68 year old mother is now texting. The first couple of texts I got from her were hilarious because she would sign them "mom". She's now figured out that she doesn't need to tell me who she is.

I will now leave you with a pic of Paul Guilfoyle in a tux. He was emcee at the Berklee Encore Gala in Boston in mid October. He does like to talk with his hands, which I'm told is linked to better speaking.

bunchofgrapes: (Paul G - profile)
Wow, was my last update really April 2nd? I can't believe it's been that long. You know what that means?

I'm putting it under a cut. )
bunchofgrapes: (Brass - Undone)
If last night was food fail, tonight was food win. I stopped at Whole Foods, got much better, hair-free spring rolls, a lump crab cake, some rock shrimp (for the weekend) and these awesome pumpkin/cranberry/walnut and maple/walnut cookies. I love the cookies at Whole Foods. Heck, I love Whole Foods. Just wish there was a bigger one near me. I could live in that place.

Today at work they announced yet another re-org. When I first heard that it was coming (a couple of hours before the formal announcement), I can't tell you how demoralized I was. My company should be called "Management Re-organizing Constantly" because that's all we do. We have re-orged at least once, sometimes twice, every year since 2007. And it sucks because they always announce these things right before the holidays and then we, the people in the trenches, have to give up our holidays to make it happen. This is why I mostly hate Christmas. I never get to actually enjoy Christmas. My boss doesn't think it's going to be too bad but right now, no one really knows what's going to happen. Stay tuned...

This is the part where I fangirl Brass )
bunchofgrapes: (The Avengers - it's a gas)
I'm having food fail tonight. First I get this fresh shrimp spring roll from Trader Joe's and it has a 6" long dark hair in it. That ain't my hair. I'm still a little skeeved by that one. Then I'm heating up some chicken tempura, also from Trader Joe's and as I'm taking it out of the oven, it starts to slide off the pan and some of it falls onto the bottom of the oven. The bottom of my oven needs to be cleaned. Desperately. I ate it anyway. Hunger does that to me. But I did not eat that spring roll! Sure I've pulled the odd cat hair out of a plate of food (pulled a few out of my nose too - how does this happen?) but a 6" dark hair? I say no sir!

Does anyone out there in Internet Land take Singulair? My doctor just prescribed it for me and some of the possible side effects are scary! So far it just makes me feel kind of draggy the next day. I'm kind of liking the lack of crud in my throat in the morning though.

Mary Tyler Moore is going to be on Hot in Cleveland with Betty White. That's almost as awesome as the Sound of Music reunion show on Oprah. Btw, I DVR'd this but still haven't watched it. Don't tell me how it ends. Speaking of The Sound of Music, when I was a kid, I would never watch any show that seemed "wimpy" to me. Don't ask me to explain myself because I was obviously a bit misguided. And what makes this more puzzling? I loved, loved, loved "My Fair Lady". Of course that was mostly because I crushed on Rex Harrison but that's beside the point. Anyway, "The Sound of Music" used to always run on Thanksgiving (or that weekend) and we'd be at my aunt's house and I'd refuse to watch it. One Thanksgiving, they made me watch it and yes, I was hooked immediately. To the point where I could never ever miss it. I even made my mom speed home once (my aunt and cousins lived an hour away) so we could be home in time to watch it. I still refused to watch "Little House on the Prairie" though.
bunchofgrapes: (Earl - hair net)
One of the things I miss the most about Tulsa (besides my best friend) is this local dive called Coney Island. They changed Island to I-Lander in the mid 80's but it'll always be Island to me. I'm sure there are other restaurants similarly named around the country. They just opened the Coney Island Diner down the street from me and it's good but really, there's only one Coney I-Lander. Actually, there are several because it's a small chain in Tulsa. But it started as one restaurant in Downtown Tulsa by a Greek immigrant back in the 20's. There really isn't anything special about the place - unless you grew up in Tulsa.

The thing about a Coney Island coney, besides being a cheap eat at just a buck a coney, is that you could never eat just one. Coney's are much smaller than a hot dog. You can probably finish one in a couple of bites so two is almost standard but it's not a stretch to eat three or more. Get them loaded and it's probably best to stop at three. What makes a Coney Island coney great is well, everything: the steamed bun, the roasted wienie, the combination of chili, mustard, raw onions and cheese and the little tray they come in. When I was a kid we used to joke that if a local dog went missing, it was probably in the chili. No, not really, but the chili definitely isn't something you'd want to eat on a cold, winter night. It's meaty but thinner. A good topper for a coney.

Whenever my dad and I reminisce about Tulsa, Coney Island coneys always get a mention. My stepmother thinks we're sick for liking them but she was never about good bad food. Too bad because she's missing out on some fine eatin'. Of course, she'll probably live a lot longer than the rest of us.
bunchofgrapes: (Patsy - Sweetie Darling)
Left work early today because my boss and I were watching a man in the parking lot behind us scrape the ice off his car. My boss came into my office two minutes later and said she was leaving and so was I. Good thing because halfway home it started to really rain and ice was covering the mirrors and causing the windshield wiper on the driver's side to ice over. Even with traffic at a crawl and salt and sand on the road, in a three-mile stretch I saw numerous cars in the ditch and counted three ambulances. A couple of miles from home there was a six car pile-up on an icy ramp. It's not supposed to get any better tomorrow morning and I have an 8:30am conference call so I'll be working from home--yay!

When I got home what did I find at the front door? A slightly frozen box from [ profile] gsr_sara_gil. Cookies! Guess what I had for dinner? No, I had tacos but then I had chocolate chip cookies! Once they thawed out. Seriously, they were frozen. But OMG! these are so good! They're bite size and full of chocolate chips and you definitely can't eat just one. Thank you so much!

ETA: I'm taking down the Solidarity with Writers banner on my profile because yes, the strike is over! WGA members have voted to lift the restraining order and writers are back at work tomorrow. Okay CSI writers, now give Brass a brilliant arc for the rest of the season!
bunchofgrapes: (Paul G - Smokin')
What a great day today has been!

why today was great )
bunchofgrapes: (The Avengers - it's a gas)
I have to give a huge THANK YOU to the amazing [ profile] jenbachand for the most awesome gift she sent last night. That was such a surprise and it really made my day. Thank you so much!

So I get into work this morning and open my door to see that my boss, Suzanne, has decorated my office. Yes, it was pretty funny because it looked like I was sitting under this rainbow octopus. Much joking from co-workers ensued.

I can't believe that I'm this old and birthdays still don't suck.

Oh, and can I just say that I'm madly in love with Harris Teeter? They make this Kalamata Olive and Rosemary bread that is to die for. Top it with the double creme cheese spread with crab and grilled artichokes and you can just bury me now.
bunchofgrapes: (Default)
We took a late lunch at work yesterday. Planned to go for sushi but the place closed at 2:30 and we got there about ten minutes too late. So we went to Pauli Moto's over at Tyson's.

my perfect day )

On a totally suckfest note, my sister called and the house we were supposed to have on the beach in Islamorada is full of fleas (allegedly--she thinks the agent might have double booked it). They offered us two other choices one that looks like the Brady Bunch might have lived there once and the other that's only 3 bdrms. We need four bdrms. My other sister and I, being the single girls, would have to share a room and that's not very appealing to either of us. But it's a nice house with a heated pool. Neither house is on the beach though. Near the water, yes, but it's not the same. I'm not sure what we'll do. I sent my sister a few other properties that I found. If she can't get the agent to find something more suitable (hey, we signed up for a 4 bdrm ON THE BEACH!) then we might have to look elsewhere. Maybe next time we should just do an all inclusive trip to Hawaii. Works for me.


bunchofgrapes: (Default)

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