Thursday, December 30, 2021
Monday, December 27, 2021
Every evening at 6:30 Lorelei gets her "yogurt treat" - a big dollop of plain or vanilla nonfat yogurt in a small dish. She and Abby Lab LOVED that, and would definitely let you know if you forgot.
Whoever is up and around the kitchen will get it, sometimes my husband, sometimes me.
The other night, he was in the shop and Lorelei came to me with the "hey, I never got my yogurt treat look" laying on the pitiful look quite thick.
So I got her the treat as it was almost 7 pm.
Just as she was finishing up my husband got back into the house and said "Hey, she ALREADY got her yogurt treat - did she tell you she hadn't?"
Lorelei wouldn't look me in the eyes.
Me: "I was Lab-boozled!"
Saturday, December 25, 2021
It wouldn't be Christmas at the Johnson house if I didn't post the year's Geeky gifts. Christmas Eve was a traditional turkey dinner (since I was in the hospital over Thanksgiving), and like a 5-year old I woke my husband up about 5 a.m. because "There's presents. . . and coffee. . . did I mention COFFEE".
This year there was more of the practical for him as his work has his traveling, often to places colder than here. So warm vests, hats, sweaters, pj's, etc., and then, the fun stuff.
His stocking had an assortment of toiletries and snackables as well as the next Green New Deal vehicle. The balloon didn't have the face of a politician on it - but we might remedy that.
"Really Honey - you bought me a broom?"
Oh wait - it's a disguised walking stick - made out of a deer antler and hickory - because hickory is perfect if you need to whack the )*# out of someone because they called your "walking stick" a "cane" (PT on the leg IS going well, up to walking 2 miles a day now but it's been uphill).
For extra safety, I can walk with the guy with the flashing LED beanie.
Wednesday, December 22, 2021
Sunday, December 19, 2021
Thursday, December 16, 2021
Sunday, December 12, 2021
Friday, December 10, 2021
This makes 8 pancakes double if it cooking for a larger group.
Mix in large bowl:
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cornmeal
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Mix in another bowl
1 egg whisked (I used an extra-large one, if using a smaller one you might want to add another Tablespoons milk).
3/4 cup milk to which you've added 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons melted butter.
Mix wet and dry ingredients
Cook on an oiled griddle.
Next up is a recipe for some homemade corn tortillas for carne asada tacos for lunch. (Yes, I don't like raw tomatoes, hence my tacos are a bit "nekked" with just lettuce and a little Mexican cheese and some Scoville Brothers hot sauce from Northern Indiana)
Note: making these from just stone-ground cornmeal is not going to work, you need the traditional Mexican masa harina flour to which you add just a bit of cornmeal for a slightly crunchier texture. Masa harina is made by drying field corn (maize) and then treating it in a solution of lime and water. I This loosens the hulls from the kernels and softens the corn. In addition, the lime reacts with the corn so that the nutrient niacin can be assimilated by the digestive track.
1 and 1/4 cups plus 2 Tablespoons masa harina (I buy Bob's Red Mill Brand, in health food sections at the store and at Amazon at a good price).
2 Tablespoons stone-ground cornmeal
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lard (or veggie equivalent)
About 1 cup hot water, or more as needed
Flour for kneading
Combine the masa, cornmeal, and salt in a bowl; stir in the oil. Slowly stream in the water while mixing with your hand or a wooden spoon until the dough comes together into a ball.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until it is smooth and elastic — just a minute or two. Wrap in plastic, and let it rest at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or up to a few hours.
Break off pieces of the dough (you’re shooting for 12 to 16 tortillas total), and lightly flour them. Put them between 2 sheets of plastic wrap, and press them in a tortilla press, or use a rolling pin, or roll them out or press them with your hands to a diameter of 4 to 6 inches. Begin to cook the tortillas as you finish pressing or rolling them.
Put a large skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Cook the tortillas, 1 or 2 at a time, until brown spots appear on the bottom, about a minute. Flip, and do the same on the other side. Wrap the cooked tortillas in a towel to keep them warm; serve immediately, or cool and store tightly wrapped in the fridge for a few days.
Lastly, for dinner. Pork chops dredged in egg and milk and coated with crushed cornflakes to which some lemon pepper was added, baked at 350 F. for 50 minutes (these were thick cut) served with veggies, garlic mashed potatoes and topped with lemon slices.
Metric ingredients provided for our Canadian readership (Hailey and Zyphod's Mom)
Note: the conversion came from "the Metric Kitchen" so if a chicken explodes I won't be held responsible. :-)
1 cup yellow cornmeal Plus 2 Tablespoons (175 grams)
1 cup all-purpose flour Plus 2 Tablespoons (140 grams) Gluten-free flour works, just add 1/2 teaspoon Xanath Gum
1 tablespoon baking powder (15 mL)
1/3 cup granulated sugar (65 grams)
1 teaspoon salt (7 grams)
1 cup milk plus 2 Tablespoons (270 mL)
2 large eggs (make sure you use ones from Metric chickens)
1/2 stick butter, melted (60 grams)
3 Tablespoons honey (65 mL)
1/4 teaspoon Mexican vanilla
Getting the "stink-eye" when the muffins are not tossed to the dog like tennis balls.
Heat oven to 400 degrees (about 200 C). Into a large bowl, mix the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the whole milk and eggs. In a small glass bowl in the microwave, melt butter and then add the honey to that. Add the wet to the dry ingredients and stir until mixed.
Bake in a greased 12 muffin tin, or use the little paper muffin liners. Bake for 14-15 minutes, just until golden.
Monday, December 6, 2021
A few years ago, when I was still commuting between Indianapolis and Chicago after getting married and waiting for my job transfer we got hit with a "Polar Vortex". As a former airline Captain, I can explain that in precise and scientific meteorological terminology.
It's (#(@! COLD out!!!!!
I had sold my house and was renting a small condo in a nice complex with its own dog park. But there was no "yard" and taking Abby outside to potty late at night was a challenge. She did NOT want to leave the front porch and I don't blame her with temps down in the minus 20's. I also didn't want to risk falling down in the dark and freezing to death either.
So we went to plan B, which was setting up a doggie potty station in the attached garage with some turf and a shallow pan to hold it. It worked - she did her business and came right back in. But it wasn't as big as I needed so she sometimes "missed" which meant clean up. Then I had to figure out how to replace the turf as it was winter and the stores weren't selling any. Not fun and it meant going out in the cold to find more turf.
So I was happy to find when I moved here that there are companies that specialize in such things. Abby would usually just go really quickly off the porch (on a leash so she couldn't spend 20 minutes trying to sniff everything before coming back in). Lorelei is another story. She just doesn't want to go out at all when it's really wet and cold.
So glad I found Doggie Lawn - we set up her potty station on the front porch (which is open-air but covered) and when the weather is really bad she just goes out, does her thing, and comes right back in. With a doggie gate up at the steps she can't leave the porch and I can watch from inside where it's warm, rather than standing out by the back stairs hoping I don't fall and becoming a Momsickle by morning if my husband is on the road. (I don't like to let her out at night unattended, we have coyotes around as we live near a large forest preserve)
Signing up online was easy. After the initial set up with the plastic turf caddy and some scented spray to quickly train her (note: do NOT use as an after-shower body spray, for dog training use only :-) I get a new strip of custom-sized turf every 3 months (or more frequently in the winter), and the old bit is easily composted. It magically arrives on the porch in a big "bark alert" truck and I can adjust the times between deliveries as needed.
Today, she got a walk and later lots of playtime with her ball in the yard when it was a balmy 22, but tonight, when the wind chill is supposed to get to minus 15, we will be heading to the porch before bed and first thing in the morning while the coffee brews.
Sunday, December 5, 2021
Friday, December 3, 2021
But no, I needed to hurry on home so I could . . . . wait for another train.
And there WILL be dessert.