Saturday, November 22, 2008


Ok, this was totally from a mix, but doesn't it look good?

The Yard

This post definitely isn't food related, but ah well. One thing I like about the place we're renting in Lubbock, is the spacious back yard. It turns out that the dogs like it too.

Here's Nizhoni trying to scratch her back (or something)

this went on for quite some time

And here Nizhoni and Kodiak are playing with each other. This picture isn't great because it is through the window and there was a big light differential. However, I was really impressed that they were play fighting without one of us watching them directly.

Yes, Nizhoni looks a lot smaller, but she can definitely hold her own

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Honey Curry Squash

I remember liking squash as a kid, but haven't had much luck myself making squash that actually enjoyed (not winter squash, at least). So, wanted to instill variety in my vegetable repertoire, I compelled myself to buy an acorn squash last week, and decided to try a few things out. The recipe below is the one that is definitely worth sharing with you, my loyal readers (AKA Z and her mom).

This recipe I got from this month's Cooking Light magazine. It turned out very well, and will definitely be one I put into a regular rotation. I tweaked the recipe based on what I had (and the fact that I was cooking for one), but didn't make any huge modifications.

Honey Curry Squash

1/2 acorn squash, cubed
1 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
golden raisins (not sure how many I used - I added them until it "looked right")
1-2 tbsp honey
curry powder and cayenne pepper, to taste

  • Toss squash cubes with olive oil, salt, & pepper
  • Bake at 500° for 15-20 minutes, or until tender
  • Toss remaining ingredients and serve
(see, I told you it was simple)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Rice Pilaf

I'd always wanted to try making a rice pilaf. I mean, it seemed so simple - rice, some sort of seasoning, and perhaps a vegetable or two. However, whenever I tried an "impromptu" (i.e., without looking up a recipe) pilaf, I failed miserably. Then, one day while watching Good Eats, I saw Alton Brown make a rice pilaf that seemed remarkably easy. So, last month, when Z was here and I was therefore cooking and blogging more regularly, I thought that it would be a great time to try making a pilaf. Alton's recipe was remarkably easy, although it was not super flavorful. I'm not sure exactly what I'd change (more garlic, perhaps, or some pepper), but it is something I will certainly play around with.

Rice Pilaf
adapted from Good Eats

2 tbsp butter
1/2 onion, minced
1/2 red bell pepper, minced
2 pinches kosher salt
2 cups long grain rice (I used jasmine rice)
2-3/4 c chicken broth
1/2 tsp orange zest
Pinch of saffron strands, steeped in 1/4 cup hot water
1 bay leaf
Golden raisins for garnish

  • Preheat oven to 350°
  • In a heavy, wide, lidded pan, melt butter over medium-low heat
  • Add onion, pepper, and salt, sweat until aromatic, stirring constantly
  • Add rice and stir to coat and rice begins to smell nutty
  • Add chicken broth, orange zest, saffron and water, and bay leaf & bring to boil
  • Cover pan with moistened dish towel (or tea towel). Place lid on pan and fold towel corners over lid
  • Bake for 15 minutes
  • Rest at room temperature for 10 to 20 minutes without removing the cover.
  • Remove lid from rice and turn out onto a platter
  • Fluff with a large fork and add raisins