Sunday, November 29, 2009
Toad in the hole from Jason Parsons as prepared on CityLine, adapted by me.
1 package sausages (I used 6 skinless cheddar Mitchell's sausages)
2 carrots peeled and thickly julienned
1 small turnip peeled and thickly julienned
sprinkle of sage, salt and pepper
I sliced the sausages and tossed them and the vegetables in a roasting pan with the spices and roasted for ~ 30 minutes at 375 deg.
Yorkshire pudding mixture
7 large eggs
1 1/2 c flour
1 1/2 c milk
(Note match the volume of eggs with equal volumes of milk and flour. In this case my eggs measured 1 1/2 cups.) Beat eggs. Add flour and whisk until the lumps are gone. Add the milk and beat together. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Pour the vegetables and sausages into a greased casserole dish (9x13 or equivalent). Pour the yorkshire pudding mix over the top. Push the veggies into the batter. Bake at 375 for ~ 35 minutes or until the pudding is set all the way through. Serve with gravy, if desired.
Friday, November 27, 2009
What a difference a year makes. T has been waiting for this for months. He's had his list since August and regularly drags it out and shows it to everyone (at church, at school, anywhere he has a chance to ). D printed out the list, after T wore out his small catalog that came with a toy tractor he got last Christmas. So this year's wish list includes
-dumptruck with long dump body
-concrete mixing truck
- road grader
-low bed with a track backhoe
Lately he has added
- logging truck with grapple hook
-two black racing cars with batteries
Last week, I asked him if he wanted to go to my work Christmas party and his yelled answer was "is SANTA going to be there?"
When I said I thought Santa was going to drop in, he said "I'm going to bring my list!!". Oh dear. This should be interesting. I've already talked to Santa and told him how excited T was to see Santa and show him his list. I'm still trying to get T to give me his top 3 picks to get from Santa because the elves at the North Pole are so busy making toys for all the boys and girls everywhere around the world and Santa has to fit all the toys in the sled to go around the whole world so probably Santa will only be able to deliver 3 construction trucks.
At this point, thankfully, T doesn't seem to be remembering the bulk of his previous presents from Santa, last year's big art easel and spider web bean bag chair and the previous year's big train table.
Meantime, I played Santa's helper today by wrapping gifts for the party. As it is less than a month to the big day, I'm easing myself into getting into the spirit. A christmas CD in the car, this week. Next week the advent calendars come out - T's chocolate one and a quilted one I made when T was a baby. When I get that out, I might start with the door hangers as well. Have to do it slowly so as not to trigger D's Scrooge reflex!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
“Which artist were you learning about?” I asked.
“Mickeangelo” came his answer.
“Was there paper on the bottom of the table?”, I said, just wanting clarification that he wasn’t painting on the actual table.
“What did you paint?”
Of course, almost every painting T has done lately is a roller coaster.
(this one is apparently in the style of Emily Carr)
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
And now it's quiet. There is the drip, drip, drip of the rain on the drainpipe outside, the hum from the laundry in the dryer, a small boy curled up in his bed, sound asleep, the aroma of stew cooking for tomorrow night's supper and a mug of hot tea next to my computer. Life is good.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Sunday night I made Mushroom Spinach Lasagna - a recipe I've been tweaking for ages trying to eliminate the oily film that I had the past couple of times. And I think this version worked really well.
Fresh lasagna sheets (I made mine using a breadmaker pasta recipe and my pasta machine)
Ricotta spinach mixture (adapted from a Delia Smith recipe in Basic of Cooking One)
1 tub of ricotta
1 bag of spinach, cooked with a bit of butter until wilted, drained, chopped
70 g gorgonzola cheese
70 g mozarella grated
grating of nutmeg
2-3 tbsp milk
Mix all ingredients together until well blended.
Half a medium onion, chopped, sauted
1 leek, green part only, sliced and rinsed well, sauted
1 c. sliced mushrooms (I used cremini and button), sauted
1 tub of Safeway Gourmet mushroom soup
2 tbsp flour
Saute the vegetables until soft, add the soup and flour and mix well. Heat through for 5-10 minutes.
In a greased 9x13 pan, spoon 1/3 of the mushroom mix and spread over the bottom. Fit one layer of noodles over the mix. Pour over 1/3 of the ricotta mix, and 1/3 of the mushroom mix and spread over and cover the noodles. Create another layer of noodles. Sprinkle some grated mozarella over the noodles and follow with 1/3 of the ricotta mix, spread and then 1/3 of the mushroom mix. Add the final layer of noodles, cover with the last of the ricotta mix. Top with a layer of grated mozarella and parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 deg for about an hour.
Monday night I made another casserole - broccoli, cauliflower and rice with ham from Delia Smith's book Basics of Cooking One:
1 1/2 c brown rice
1 small onion sliced
3 c. vegetable or chicken stock
Saute the onion in ~ 1 tsp oil until soft. Add the rice and turn. Add the stock and cover, bring to a boil and then simmer for 50 minutes.
Meanwhile steam 1 head of cauliflower and 1 crown of broccoli florets.
Make the blue cheese sauce:
1 1/2 oz butter
1 1/2 oz flour
500 ml milk
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 c chopped ham
120 g blue cheese, crumbled
In a saucepan, add the milk, butter and flour. Whisk together and cook for 5 minutes. Add mustard, ham and blue cheese.
Once the rice is done, spread it into a greased 9x13 pan. Layer the cauliflower and broccoli florets over the rice. Pour the sauce over the vegetables, covering them as much as possible. Combine one handful of bread crumbs and some grated parmesan cheese in a small bowl and mix. Sprinkle over the dish and put into a 350 deg oven for 20 minutes, then put under the broiler for a couple of minutes until browned and bubbly.
I went away for a couple of days (to the spa for some relaxation) with my pal. I had a wonderful time despite the crazy, stormy, windy, wet weather and the guys had lots of leftovers to eat in my absence!
Monday, November 16, 2009
This pair is for T's little friend C - who came over for a playdate this week. She's such a sweetie and so different from my wild child. She was wearing her new fairy shirt and got right into painting. The two of them have wonderful conversations - one about Auntie's dog by T was riveting. Not so much for the dog (poor Allie) but in the telling of the torn cruciate ligament tale by T. " My Auntie's doggie fell down the stairs and hurt her leg and so she had to go to the animal hospital for an operation and get a big, big bandaid on her leg". C was enthralled. I wonder what his take on Allie's post-surgical hydrotherapy treatments would be!
Sunday, November 8, 2009
I got him a preschool version of the old snakes and ladders game a few weeks ago after we played a few rounds at the kid's stall at the market. This version is really chutes and ladders - I guess snakes are too scary. And there is a spinner instead of a dice. T cheats - he moves the spinner to whatever number he wants it to be but not with any game advantage in mind - just because he likes certain numbers better than others. He loves going down the slides even when he doesn't have to, in fact, he gets annoyed if I "get to go down a slide" and he hasn't yet. He loves to win but wants me to win as well. Not quite clear on the concept which is ok with me.
We also play a card matching game with Thomas the Tank Engine cards - in our house called the Thomas matching game. I've taken to carrying the cards around in my purse as we can play a smaller version of it while waiting for shots for instance. (This week we waited for over an hour for T's H1N1 shot). T is extraordinarily lucky at this game - D thinks he's marked the cards as I think he's only lost one game so far (to Uncle M after 3 wins and a tie).
Yesterday the puppets came out of the hiding bag (hide some of the toys so we aren't overwhelmed)
And another baby beanie.
I have a couple of bigger projects I'd like to do. I found some great patterns over at garnstudio.com. A boy's sweater and a sweater for me (using wool I've had for ages).
1 c. currants
Sunday, November 1, 2009
My other use for leftover wool is baby beanies. A group of north shore churches started a project to knit or crochet 10,000 baby beanies for distribution to local and global hospitals, etc. I love these - the beanies are easy to knit, use up leftover wool and I get a feeling of accomplishment with each completed beanie. So far I've done about 15. Here's the latest one.