Tag Archives: avocado

Try This at Home

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Despite squirting minced onion juice directly into my right eye, I am having a pretty good day.

Recipes to me are mere guidelines, and unless I’m feeling particularly sad and vulnerable and morose and unsure of myself (man, why would anyone try to create something feeling like that?) I like to wing it and see what happens.  This drives recipe following people a little nuts.  But it’s kind of exciting and God knows I don’t live dangerously in any other way whatsoever.

Anyway I have avocados which will not last forever in my fridge and decided this morning to try making avocado ranch dressing, or dip, or a combination of the two.  Does anyone actually measure avocado?  Wouldn’t a normal person just take their chances and  use a whole one?  I don’t like to measure sour cream or mayo either because they get my measuring cups all gross, so I plopped a dollop of each into the bowl with the avocado.  I left out dill because I don’t have any.  For onion salt and garlic powder I figured the real thing minced would be even better.  Except for the part where putting onion chunks through the garlic press temporarily blinded me in one eye, I think that worked out well.  Then I added apple cider vinegar instead of white.  I don’t really know why, but why not, hey?  And finally salt and pepper and dried parsley. Also not measured because things like that should be to taste.

It all got mushed up together with the immersion blender (I used to call this the Braun mixer, but apparently other companies make them too and I like this slightly more sophisticated name which makes me sound like I know what I’m doing when it comes to kitchen utensils).

Dont worry, its highly unlikely this will be turning in to a cooking blog.  It’s a stage I’m going through, that’s all.

Daughter and granddaughter are coming over for W’s famous fish and chips this afternoon.  I will be contributing a salad, OR……avocado tartar sauce maybe.  Doesn’t that sound good??

Hope neither of them reads this before they get here…

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What I’ve Learned From A Smoothie A Day

another dam listYes, it’s another damn list, never mind how the beaver spells it.  This list is in my normal random scatter brained order, important points cleverly interspersed amongst the mundane and useless.

1.  I have learned that baby kale has better blending qualities in a smoothie than mature tough-as-boot-leather all grown up kale.  I freeze little zip lock bags stuffed with spinach and kale and use one in every smoothie.

2.  Avocado pits take for flaming ever to grow roots.  From now on I’m just going to toss them in the compost box and let them fend for themselves.

3.  Lemon seeds disappear in a blender, freeing one from the task of laboriously digging them out of the lemon before adding it to the blender.  Now I just throw the whole thing in there and forget about the seeds. So far no lemon trees have grown out of my ears.

4.  Don’t touch the blueberries with your bare hands.  Unless you like blue hands and stubborn blue stains under your fingernails.

5.  Cut back on the antioxidant juices or coconut water to about half and use calorie free water instead.  Yes, it took me longer than the normal person to figure this one out.

6.  A Starbucks tumbler and a straw combine to make it less likely that my lips will turn a color not normally found in nature.  For lips, anyway.

7.  A good veggie powder is better than a protein powder.  This is my opinion, based on reading somewhere that you shouldn’t mix protein with fruit.  I prefer to get my protein from other sources, such as actual chicken breasts.  Some things are better left unblended.

8. Chia seeds appear to be indestructible, which makes me wonder if and how they’re being digested.  Apparently you can grind them up, but seriously, who has time for chia seed grinding.  Not me.

9.  Cinnamon and ginger add subtle flavor, but turmeric tastes weird.  I now take turmeric in tasteless capsule form.

10.  Besides going half-assed gluten-free, I am also trying to cut back on dairy.  I no longer put huge globs of Greek yogurt in my smoothies, and frankly, I don’t miss it.  The avocado and a banana add enough thickness.

11.  I need to stop reading all those health food going green articles because every time I do there’s another ingredient I feel compelled to add to my morning blender concoction from hell.  Besides, one of these days I’ll probably come across some dire warning about smoothies being bad for you.  With all health crazes it’s just a matter of time.

12.  My skin looks better, I’ve lost some weight, and breakfast has never been more fun.  I’ve been drinking these things haphazardly for a couple of years, and religiously for about six months.  Even if the various health benefits are all in my head, I don’t care.  If nothing else, I am doing my part to keep spinach farmers in business.

Look Mom – I Did it Myself!

These are the words that make a mother deliriously proud.  Or cause her to weep uncontrollably, depending on the situation.  Either of these reactions have also been known to follow all do it yourself projects performed by me in the privacy of my own home.  Friends and family will see and be prompted to praise the results of the successes, and the failures will die with me, along with other various missteps, fiascos and sordid secrets.

Prompts for the Promptless:  Do it yourself (DIY) is the method of building, modifying, or repairing something without the aid of experts or professionals.

What do we need experts and professionals for when we’ve got Google?  said a lot of clueless people who went on to learn that experts and professionals are not completely without merit after all.

For my do-it-yourself project today, I will be making a sun catcher.  I don’t really need or want one, but I have plastic beads hanging around which no grandchild seems at all gung-ho to string.  And I don’t want to throw them out and be all wasteful.  Better to throw out the finished product and feel good about myself for having at least given it a try.  Or file it under F for fiasco.  It’s kind of exciting to have no idea how something will turn out.

I am using an old pie tin that I will not miss if this whole thing turns out badly.
I am using an old pie tin that I will not miss if this whole thing turns out badly.
I am also using one of the good pie plates because I have way more stupid beads than I thought.
I am also using one of the good pie plates because I have way more stupid beads than I thought.

Notice the artistic arrangement in both cases with some opaque beads in one and only clear green, blue and purple in the other.  This is about as artistic as I feel like getting today.

While waiting for the oven to heat to 400 degrees, on the other side of the kitchen counter I ponder what to do with these three avocados I bought because they are supposedly so good for me.  The creative, multi-tasking side of my brain thinks putting them in a smoothie might be interesting, while the other side of my brain reminds me that I haven’t yet had breakfast.  Voila!  Coconut almond milk, a banana, scooped out avocado, key lime greek yogurt (which I bought accidentally thinking it was vanilla) and a bag of frozen spinach and kale results in this delightful looking concoction.

Before blending.
Before blending.
After blending.
After blending fuzzy close up. Do it yourself photography is a topic for another time.

The consistency and color are great, but the taste is rather disappointing.  In fact, there is no taste.  So I add a squirt of lemon juice, a shake of cinnamon and a couple scoops of frozen blueberries.  This makes the smoothie look like mud, but a lot easier to swallow.

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Starbucks is in no way responsible for this goop in their glass.

I can’t say for sure whether the aroma of melting plastic is adding or detracting from the avocado smoothie taste experience.

The melting process is supposed to take twenty minutes, but I’d suggest forty is more realistic.  This number comes from my admittedly limited experience – please note that I am not a professional or expert melter of beads.

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Sun catchers fresh from the oven. Wow, look how clean my stove top is!

The next thing to do is let these things cool, slip them out of the plates (ha – I’m not optimistic about that one), drill holes in them and hang them up with something like fishing line to catch the rays of the sun.  It’s cloudy today, so I’m not optimistic about that one either.  I notice the one on the left already has a hole close to one edge, so how forward thinking was that?  Flukey forward thinking is probably an apt name for it in this case.

Oh. My. God.  They really do pop right out of the pans.  And there is a little hole in the second sun catcher as well, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that there is no luck like dumb luck.

Now I will pretend that I was never skeptical, and expected nothing less than these amazing results.  Because that's what true DIY people excel at.
Now I will pretend that I was never skeptical, and expected nothing less than these amazing results. Because that’s where real DIY people truly excel.

Okay, all that’s left of this Sunday project (which didn’t turn out to be from hell after all), is to air out that burnt plastic smell from my house and wish for some sparkly sunshine.  Plus think up some totally awesome weird thing to do with the two remaining avocados.  That should not be a problem as I appear to be on a roll.