Sunday, July 14, 2013

What Happened This Week......

Summer is half over.  Can I whine just a little?  Okay.  Here it is.... WAAH!!!!  I'm not whining out of regret.  I'm whining because I love it so much.  I love sleeping in, walking barefoot and shopping at the Farmer's Market. I love grilling dinner (i.e. watching the hubby grill dinner), eating on the patio and growing tomatoes. I love picking rhubarb, concerts on the lawn and watching the sunset.

Here's some of the things I loved this week:

  • Strawberry Picking With the Cousins.  It's one of my favorite things to do during the summer: driving out into the middle of nowhere on curvy roads, passing tall silos and red barns. Fresh picked strawberries present unlimited possibilities:  Strawberry Jam, Strawberry Pie, Strawberry Scones and, of course, Fresh Strawberries!  Just the smell of fresh strawberries makes me believe that I could have been happy as a farmer.  The girls agree.

  • Another Anniversary. Nineteen Years. Wowsers. I think I was 18.  Or maybe 12.  It's so long ago I don't remember.  I knew it had been a long time when I actually considered bringing the kids along for our night out. We picked our favorite casual rooftop dining spot.  A spot that's good for conversation.  The couple next to us was celebrating 26 years. They were impressed that I still got a card.  And flowers.  He's always been good with the flowers. I'm just lucky, I guess.

  • The Dog had a Birthday. We had a party.  With a dog friend and cake. Is that wrong? The kids spent their own money on dog presents. I think he knew it was his birthday.  He's smart like that.
  • My boy got his permit. It's a huge milestone - the step from passenger to driver. I didn't think I would ever be able to stomach trading places, but when the time came, I wanted to be the one to drive him to his permit test and I wanted to be the first one to ride by his side.  We haven't left the neighborhood yet, but so far, his record's clean.

  • I watched the sunset.  It's a ritual I try not to miss. Don't ever take it for granted.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Star Spangled Fruit Kabobs

It just wouldn't be The Fourth of July without some Red, White and Blue Food!  My kids were so excited to see these, I think they ate them all in about 8 minutes.  It's amazing what a few marshmallows will do!

To make your flag kabobs you will need sixteen skewers.

Skewers 1-7:

  • 7 Blueberries
  • Marshmallow
  • Raspberry
  • Marshmallow
  • Raspberry
  • Marshmallow
  • Raspberry
Skewers 8 - 16:
  • Alternate 7 Raspberries and six marshmallows, beginning and ending with a raspberry.
The result will be an almost anatomically correct flag.

Happy Independence Day!

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Martha's One-Pot Pasta

I'm back in the land of 3G. I've watched my adorable niece star as Violet in a community theater production of Willie Wonka.  I've hosted a dinner party for 20. I've driven the girls to tennis. I'm on my 47th load of laundry. Ahhhh.....  Summer is so relaxing!

If you are enjoying summer as much as I am, this is the perfect summer meal. I knew I had to try it the minute I saw it in last month's Martha Stewart Living Magazine. It's the stuff of which dreams are made.  Throw some fresh ingredients in a pot, boil for  12 minutes and Voila! Dinner is ready!

And when I say dinner, I mean that the fresh flavors really come to life. A glug of  EVOO combined with the starchy pasta water makes a delightful sauce. You won't be disappointed.  I promise!

Can you hear it?  The Farmer's Market is calling!

One-Pot Pasta
Adapted from Martha Stewart's Living, June 2013

1 14.5 ounce package Barilla Multi-Grain Noodles
2 pints cherry tomatoes, halved
1 Sweet Vidalia onion, halved and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 sprigs basil, leaves torn
5 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil

Add all ingredients in a pan with with 4" sides.  cover with 5 cups water.  Add Olive Oil.  Boil together for 12 minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed.

Serve with parmesan cheese and fresh basil.