Quiche or Something Like It

Some days you just have to write about Quiche, especially on those days when you threw some together and it turned out on the plus side of edible.

I cooked some bacon until it was dark and crisp. Did I mention in any of my Greece-capades that there was not one breakfast in any of the places we stayed where the bacon was cooked any more than about half way? To me it looked as if they’d warmed it up until the fat melted and then thrown it in a heat tray in a limp and grease sodden mess. Yuck.

Anyway, I cooked the hell out of some bacon, cooled it on a paper towel and crumbled it up in anticipation of adding it to an omelette. And then suddenly an omelette sounded boring. So I chopped up some red onion, red pepper and green pepper, and sautéed it with a zip lock bag full of frozen spinach which usually ends up in my daily smoothie. Smoothies can get boring too.

Next I beat the hell out of six eggs. I don’t love cooking unless I’m cooking the hell out of things. I also find recipes and the way they’re written boring most of the time, unless they say weird and wonderful things like
– prepare the pan (apparently some pans don’t deal well with surprises)
– sit in the fridge for 30 minutes (this only works if you have a super sized fridge and you’re under 4 feet tall)
– season to taste (no really, you need to be more specific here for us taste impaired cooks and actually mention some spices and seasonings by name)

Anyway, buttered pie plate, beaten eggs, sautéed mixture, sprinkled with the crumbled bacon and shredded cheese (I’m sure it doesn’t matter what kind – pick something you like) into the oven at 350 for 30 minutes. Yes, I was pretty much making this up as I went along and hoping for the best. It’s not that I don’t like a Quiche with a pastry crust but those things aren’t good for you and way too much like work.

Voila!

Voila!

Extreme quiche close up.

Extreme quiche close up.

Notice that you are not seeing any of the complicated process leading to this result.  That’s because I don’t like to tempt fate by recording the steps which may lead to colossal failure.  Even with something as relatively simple as crustless Quiche.

I wonder if my cooking skills (or lack of confidence in them) can be blamed on my mother.  We blame our mothers for just about everything, so why not.  She was an excellent cook who could whip up an incredible table full of delicious food for a crowd with very little help.   It would take her longer to tell you how to do something than to just do it herself.  She was forever apologizing for the dishes she made not being better, although we couldn’t imagine how that would be possible.  She never measured anything exactly, using her measuring cups and spoons as guidelines only.  That’s why I don’t have many of her recipes.  The best ones  changed with the ingredients on hand and were never written down.  Leaving her daughters (well this one who never listened anyway) to wing it on their own.

This was really good hot out of the oven with some salsa on the side.  I’m hoping it will be really good cold too, because I may have gone a bit overboard with half a dozen eggs for one person.  Mom also always cooked with leftovers in mind.  Maybe I’m more like her than I know.

Just Jazzy 196

groak (v.)  to watch someone who is eating or to stare longingly at someone else’s food in the hope of being offered a portion of their scrumptious bounty, or better yet, being asked to join them.

jazzy 195 001

If you’re not sure you can succeed at the art of groaking, any dog will be happy to show you how it’s done.

Jazzy Words

Float A Cornflake In It

The last couple of days I’ve been reading books, watching strange things on Netflix, copying weird stuff from Facebook and avoiding writing anything intelligent.  I can’t see why today should be any different.  So here’s some of the fruits of my labour.  Or lack thereof.

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Hope everybody is having a fantastic Tuesday!  Don’t work too hard!  In fact, if you can get away with it, don’t work at all.  I expect you won’t get any better advice than this from me and F. Scott  today.

“It was only a sunny smile, and little it cost in the giving, but like morning light it scattered the night and made the day worth living.” ―     F. Scott Fitzgerald

Recipe for a Good Saturday

In amongst my conglomeration of strange notes on a messy desk I came across this funny little list.  Looks like a recipe, right?  But what the hell is it for?  I wrote it down thinking I would remember why without also jotting down a bunch of details, I guess.

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I have a feeling there’s some major ingredient missing here, along with instructions.  It looks like things one should add to something else or pour over some kind of meat maybe?? Throw in a crock pot?  I don’t know.  But since there’s no quantities for the first five ingredients, I think it would be safe to just skip them.

So go ahead and measure out those two cups of red wine.  And serve immediately.  Double this recipe if sharing with a friend.  Who says doing stuff in the kitchen can’t be simple, easy and fun?  I would definitely add this one to my recipe book if I had one.

Unidentified glass of dark red wine.

Unidentified glass of dark red wine. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When W is Away I Eat Zucchini

After three months of preparation (no exaggeration) W left this morning for his island in the east.  The river ice was probably a month later than normal breaking up so he had to wait around impatiently for better weather.  I just got a text from him saying he’s in Brandon, so tomorrow he’ll do the last leg of the drive to northern Ontario.

At last we’re getting some lovely sunny warm days here too.  The lawn people have already done most of the spring clean up, except for where the last of our snow mountain was stubbornly refusing to melt.  The last time I mentioned something about green grass we had a snow storm, so I’m not doing that again.

I have lots of plans to keep myself busy in the next several months while I’m on my own.  I would mention them all here, but then I’d be embarrassed when none of them happen.  However, there is one I can tell you about since I’ve done it already.  I bought a bunch of vegetables that W doesn’t like and that I miss cooking for myself.  I don’t understand how someone can not like the taste of zucchini – it doesn’t even have a taste.  Tonight I tried a new recipe with results that even W might have been able to choke down.

What can you do with two zucchini and a sweet potato?

What can you do with two zucchini and a sweet potato?

I even took pictures to prove that I’m not completely useless in the kitchen.  Especially when I’m really hungry.

Slice the zucchini in half lengthwise and place cut side up on a pan.  I’m crazy about my Epicure pan which works great for oven roasted potato wedges.  I’m trying to broaden my horizons by cooking other stuff on it too.  Cut the sweet potato into french fry shapes.  Or not, depending on how clueless you are when it comes to chopping things up.

randomly shpaed sweet potato chunks

randomly shaped sweet potato chunks

I put a tablespoon of oil and some spices on the sweet potato and tossed them around in a red bowl.  I like Club House garlic plus, epicure seasoning for rosemary garlic oven fries, and salt and pepper.  And I love my red bowl.

Brush the zucchini with olive oil, sprinkle with garlic plus, salt and pepper and lots of parmesan cheese.  Cut up tomatoes and layer on top.  Add salt and pepper and/or bruschetta spices.  Seriously, the zucchini is so bland, you can go a little nuts with the spices.

Grate some mozzarella cheese for the last layer.

Practically naked zucchini.

Practically naked zucchini.

Zucchini all dressed.

Zucchini all dressed.

 

 

 

TAH DAH!

TAH DAH!

There it is all oven ready (375 F for 20 – 30 minutes) and here it is out of the oven.  And shortly after that most of it disappeared.

This was really simple to put together, and incredibly good.  Hope you get a chance to try it.  And I hope you enjoyed this random recipe blog.  I promise it won’t be a regular feature, and I can hear your sigh of relief from here.  I’m sure I didn’t teach anyone anything that they couldn’t have googled and figured out on their own, and yes I will admit that it was just a shameless way for me to boast about something turning out well in my kitchen.  That’s a random thing too.

See what you’re missing W??  Turnips tomorrow!  HAHAHA!  Now he’ll probably stay away for an extra month.

A Night at the Races

If you’re going to a work related Christmas Party, how does the build up to that event make you feel?  Giddy with excitement?  Nauseous?  Like shooting yourself in the foot just to get out of it?

And if it’s your spouse or significant other dragging you off to theirs, are you okay with that?  Or is it something you dread?

I’ve been on both sides of the fence when it comes to these things.  Some I’ve enjoyed, others have been ordeals from the bottomless pits of hell.  Ha.  You think that’s an exaggeration?  Ummm….no, it’s not.

And the thing is, you never really know until you’re there and living it how it’s going to turn out.   All you can do is show up with a smile on your face and hope for the best.  Well, last night turned out to be one of the best Christmas Parties EVER.  It was casual, the food was great, I drank a lot of wine, and we all bet on the horses.  I seriously want to make this into a tradition, it was that much fun.

harness racing at Northlands 001We had a small banquet room on the fourth floor with candle lit tables and big windows overlooking the race track.  We were all snug and warm inside and I know some of us were feeling a little guilty about those poor horses and drivers out there in the cold.  It was at least 20 below!  Are they crazy?

I suppose no crazier than the people who show up to watch and place their bets.  This helpful Official Program explained how to play the horses.  I didn’t get much farther than the basic and combination bets of Win, Place and Show.  The rest was (and still is) a lot of racing gobbledygook – Exactor, Triactor, Win-3, Pick-4, Superfecta. I was just happy to say things like “two dollars on 5 in race 8 to place” like I had a clue what I was doing.

There’s all kinds of information on stats and starts, trainers, owners, breeders, handicaps, payouts, purses, and of course the odds.  All a bit mind-boggling for the novice.  So I did what I’m sure most newbies do at these things and picked the names I liked.  Sweet Like Candy, Cinderella Smile, The Sin Bin.  I think Farm Team won me some money!  With two dollar bets it’s not likely I’ll retire on my winnings, but I think I raked in a whopping thirty-four dollars over 12 races. The best I did was having two of my picks place second and third in the same race.   Raging Fingers, I’m a Wildcat and The Missing Sock?  Too good to pass up. A couple of races ended in a photo finish and my “show” bet got bumped to 4th.  Life is full of such great disappointments – I think he would have paid out at a staggering three dollars and change.  Trust The Artist was a big bust, and I should have bet on Sharkalucchi but I didn’t.  And I should NOT have bet on Minettaszoombyyall but I did.  The odds were 15-1 and I don’t know if the horse even showed up for the race, never mind zooming by y’all.

A very popular Champion. Breed:Kaldblodstraver

A very popular Champion. Breed:Kaldblodstraver (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

While all this racing hoopla laughter and excitement was going on we were treated to an excellent hot buffet meal, drinks, dessert, and coffee. Meanwhile those poor horses and jockey’s froze their asses off for our entertainment.  We are all suffering from chronic brain freeze tough and hardy Canadians up here, y’all!

I’ve never considered myself much of a gambler, and the VLT’s and slot machines have never been a temptation.  But going back to the races sometime is definitely on my agenda.  Like in the middle of July maybe.  I think I’d rather see a horse sweat than dangle icicles from its nostrils.

As far as Christmas Parties go, I’m rating this one a 10 out of 10.  What are the odds of that happening?  But it has, and even though I’m a little lighter for cash today, I’m happy I got to be a part of it all.