Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe 118--Harvard Carrots





Come with me as I continue to countdown my Friday Friend Cookbook!

What is it, you may ask?


In a nutshell...
About 16 years ago, 50 of my closest friends and family, who had been on an e-mail forum with me, sent in recipes in different categories and we compiled a cookbook.
I decided to count those down!
Why?


Because  one night I was looking thru the cookbook and I said, "I should make every recipe in here for my blog"
The Handyman--who thinks he knows me better than I know myself, said,  "you'll never EVER do that."
Well,  maybe I will!  Maybe I'll show him!


Which brings me to recipe #118  My Mom's Harvard Carrots



Let me just take a moment and apologize to my mother (and all of you):  the photos are horrible!!
(It looks a little bit like snot)

The cornstarch thickened the sauce just a little bit too much!





I didn't want to make them again and take another photo, so this is what you get.
While I like Harvard Carrots (and beets), the Handyman, not so much.
I guess his mother never made them with a Sunday pot roast and mashed potatoes like my mom did.
My mom grew up on a cattle ranch in north east Oregon. She said she had beef 2x a day 6 days a week, so she LOVED it when they would have fried chicken or pork chops on Sundays.  Beef was not her favorite, and yet  it was our 'go to'  Sunday after church meal, when I was growing up.
The sides would change every so often---these Harvard Carrots were considered fancy schmancy!




If you like veggies with a bit of twangy sweetness, then you'll like these.
Just don't let the cornstarch make the sauce too thick like I happened to do.



So...as you surmised, this is my mom's recipe.
This is her 20th appearance in the FF cookbook countdown.
Her most recent entries being #107 and #108.

Here is my mom's 20th story.
Hockey.
The end.

One of the highlights of their lives was getting to see the Stanley Cup in person. 



My family  cannot be outdone, so  my nephew made a 'mini' cup.
This trophy is at our cabin, and we use it to mark the winner of a card game.
The card game is called 31, and the winner gets to put their name on the mini-Stanley.
It worked okay.


But you know---it really wasn't quite right, so
THE CABIN CUP was born!

Made of the finest red solo cups, water bottles and duct tape, it stays at our cabin at the lake and whenever anyone stays there a game of 31 is played.
Winner gets her/his name on the trophy!
Below is my granddaughter, Emerson, proudly displaying her trophy win of summer 2016!


The designer of our family cabin cup is my nephew Jason,
seen below is his glory days.





This is him now.



He broke his ankle playing hockey last month.

My mom--- loved hockey, her grandkids, her great grandkids and Harvard carrots.

That's my story.










Monday, February 20, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #117 -- Parisienne Chicken



My Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown #117!
(#willreallyfinishthissomeday)

Barb's Parisienne Chicken (or is it Parisian?)

and you know all the whys and wherefores of this countdown, right? Homemade cookbook, friends contributed, Handyman said I couldn't/wouldn't do it, I'll show him, yadda yadda yadda....
...and the rest is cookbook history!


Chicken in a cream sauce--with mushrooms!
What's not to like?
The only bad thing is, it's hard to photograph.
We really liked this chicken.  I served it with rice and spooned a little of the extra sauce over it. Yummy!

Chicken Parisienne
Barbara Brown
Buckeye, AZ

(the wine must make it Parisienne?)

6 medium boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 can cream of mushroom soup
fresh mushrooms to taste (lots)
paprika
1 cup sour cream

Place breasts in a baking dish. Salt.  Blend wine into soup. Add mushrooms and pour over chicken.  Bake at 350 for 1 to 1 1/4 hours.
Remove breasts to platter; sprinkle with paprika.  Pour sauce into a pan and blend with sour cream.  Heat gently. 
Serve over rice.





You all remember when Barb said this (in countdown #97, Barb's 24th recipe in the countdown,  March 8th, 2016 ):

I am a bit upset at my daughter.  She has had the audacity to challenge me--the Spelling Nazi--on a word that I had written years ago in my recipe book.  I had a recipe called "Chicken Parisienne" which she feels should be "Parisian"..... I figure if she ever cooks it, she can spell it however she wants.

Well, Barb put this recipe in the Friday Friend cookbook too! So, now---is the argument back on again?
(  by the way, Parisenne chicken is her 30th in the countdown  )
I served this chicken with Kim's Greek Salad (recipe #116 in the FF Countdown)



I have trouble now, coming up with stories, but I found this in a notebook (the secret one I keep about the Friday Friend Forum answers)

Barb's story:
In her own words:
Doug did one of those funny word substitutions the other day.  He was asking if it was the day I was going to the dentist, and when I said yes, he said.... "are they going to knock you up?"   (he meant knock me out), and I replied that I certainly hoped not.
***************

That's a good story and I should leave it at that.
Very funny.
But....
I was cleaning out closets the other day and came across these photos...

This is Dustin.
Dustin is my son.



One time, about  16 years ago, Barb came to his graduation party.  She came all the way from Arizona--to Nevada.
She was so happy.  So happy that it wasn't HOT like Arizona and she could enjoy the warm weather.
See her toes?  She enjoyed that.





She enjoyed herself by the kiddie pool with the relatives from Seattle.  They were enjoying themselves for another reason--they were happy it was warm and not rainy. Warm enough to actually 'swim'.


As much as one can 'swim' in a kiddie pool, that is.
But the point was---the Arizona and the Seattle contingents had something in common.
(altho the Seattle people were a bit more crazy than the Phoenix people, it looks like)



So my good friend (and editor of the original Friday Friend Cookbook) decided to play a game similar to  'Six degrees of separation (or Kevin Bacon) and  went around the party finding something she had in common with everyone. 

And she made me take a picture.
The trouble is...I can't remember what she had in common with most of them.

These three I do tho!

Barb and Friday Friend Robbie Milton, upon their first introduction discovered they were born at the same hospital in Tacoma, Washington. 
Same Hospital
Same year
3 weeks apart.
(by the way, Robbie has FF recipes #27 and #114 in the countdown)
You decide which one is older.


My son's friend David West. (his mom has a couple of recipes in the FF Countdown--she has yet to appear on the blog).  Barb discovered that David also works at a gym.
(Dave was a trainer---Barb, in her words: checked people in and gave them a towel. Also made smoothies.  And kept the place dusted.  And cheered them all up as they drug themselves to the gym at 5am )


And finally--Barb and I both had some dental work done recently, or perhaps we were going to soon.
???
(from the looks of it, I think we both had a broken tooth. )


And that my friends is Barb's story.  She can make a game out of anything and she can make friends with anyone.

This is Barb's Parisienne Chicken, recipe #117 out of 298.




Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #116 -- Greek Salad




Friday Friend Recipe #116:  Greek Salad
Making my way thru my Friday Friend Cookbook, one recipe at a time.
What is the Friday Friend cookbook: I have about 50 of my closest friends and family on an e-mail forum which I called the Friday Friends (from all over the county). At first, most of them didn't know each other, (they knew me) but over the past 15 years, we've answered and shared silly--and serious---questions, exchanged Secret Santa Christmas gifts, had a dieting contest in which we paid a $1 a week and that money went to a scholarship fund for a Friday Friends son's memorial scholarship, and we went on a great vacation for my 52 birthday.

AND, we contributed recipes for a cookbook.

I was looking at the cookbook the other night and I said, "I should make every recipe in here for my blog."
The Handyman--who knows me better than I know myself (this happened to be a question on the Friday Friend forum once---does your spouse/partner know you better than you know yourself?)--said,  "you'll never, EVER do that."

WELL---maybe I'll show him!  Maybe I will.

Which brings me to this... recipe #116

Kim's
Greek Salad




This salad is pretty basic, but that's what makes it so good. It's crisp and fresh and tangy with the Greek Dressing, which is a great compliment to the saltiness of the olives.
I like it very much.



Greek Salad
Kim Brown Morrison
San Diego, CA

Combine desired quantities of the following:
Romaine Lettuce
feta cheese
Kalamata olives (or regular black)
red onion, sliced thin
tomato--cut up
Greek salad dressing--reduced fat is good



This is Kim's first appearance in the Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown.
Kim happens to be the daughter of Barbara  Brown (see all her recipes here), the very one who typed the original FF Cookbook all those years ago.
If you recall the forum I used to have? When I asked all the questions etc?  Well, once my friends daughters turned 18, they were fair game for me to ask questions (yes, some were adult themed questions--altho, never too bad).  I called the daughters of my friend "the petites"  like in the book "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.

Now that that is straightened out--- I need a Kim story.
Once when I asked the Friday Friends and FF Petites a question about laundry---Kim wrote back that she had done 5 loads of laundry that week!  She was done with it!  Too much!
We all had to tease her---even her mom-- and say   "ooohhh 5 loads of laundry!"  "welcome to adulthood-haha."  (I was doing about 15 loads a week at that time)
That was quite a few years ago, I'm sure Kim has acclimated to laundry by now.

When  the kids were younger and we lived closer and got together often, Kim would tolerate our 3 boys for the first day.  they all had fun together, running around doing crazy kid things, but  by the 2nd day, she would need some down time and disappear into her bedroom for a while.
I often did that myself while raising them.

Kim and I --kindred spirits on that account!





I first knew Kim when she was a little girl.....


Then she grew up and got married.....


Then she got this....
(I love this photo)



That's my Kim story!

And this is recipe #116 out of 298!






Friday, February 3, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #115 -- Guacamole Shrimp Bites



My Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown #115!
(#willreallyfinishthissomeday)

My favorite mother-in-law, Teresa's, Guacamole Shrimp Bites!

and you know all the whys and wherefores of this countdown, right? Homemade cookbook, friends contributed, Handyman said I couldn't/wouldn't do it, I'll show him, yadda yadda yadda....
...and the rest is cookbook history!




While this might seem a bit different--it was perfect to the pallet. (I should be a food writer, right?)  Homemade Guac with some good salty tortilla chips? Perfect.  Then stick a shrimp on top?  Heaven.  Really.  Trust me.






A mother-in-law story?  Hmmmm......
first of all, let me just say that this is her 4th appearance in the Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown. 

I was glancing thru some old letters this morning and came across this one from my MIL.  I must have asked her what her favorite flower was..
she says:
Your asking about a memorable valentine made me think of a memorable corsage.  I was 13/14 and a freshman in high school.  I went to a formal dance at the school with a boy. Can't remember what kind of formal dance other than that it WAS formal.  In those days everything except sock hops where formal or semi-formal.  I don't remember who the boy was who asked me, but I do remember that when the florist delivered my corsage, I was so excited and wondered if it would be roses, an orchid or what?  I opened the box and the most heavenly scent came drifting out.  I was impressed!  I looked into the box and saw the most beautiful waxy white flower, with very dark green leaves and a lovely ribbon on it.  It was a Gardenia.  I have loved the scent every since.  After the dance I floated that Gardenia in a brandy snifter of water and my bedroom smelled wonderful.  It didn't even start turning dark yellow or brown for a week!
And until I had a bunch of kids, I used to buy myself a gardenia and float it in a brandy snifter on the coffee table now and then.
I think I will do that again one of these days.

Oh man! I'm going to go order her Gardenias right away!

For a while my in-laws owned a ranch.  It was beautiful and we all loved it very much. It was on the Washington side of the Columbia River (the Columbia river is the divider between Washington and Oregon) along the river gorge.  Here is a view from their backyard....if you look very closely you can make out the volcano, Mt. Hood.
(or at least you can in the original photo--it is snowcapped so it blends)




The view out the side was of this pond and the barns. My youngest son (on the right) and his cousin, Matt, loved to catch frogs...and snakes too.  There were rattlesnakes sometimes--YIKES!



My boys and the grandmother, "Nonna", circa 1999.
She's always loved flowers and gardening... if you look closely you can see that she planted all along the house and the edge of her property.  She was a master Gardner.


And the Handyman in his sexy big glasses, (or should that senence read: the sexy Handyman and his big glasses?  I guess it's open to interpretation ) and salt and pepper hair--now it's just salt, and his mom.



We all miss the days of the ranch!

This is recipe #115 out of 298!

I'll get 'em done, you just watch and see!






Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #114 --Mystery Surprise Cabbage


The perfect comfort food---for me.



My Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown #114!
(#willreallyfinishthissomeday)

Robbie's Mystery Surprise Cabbage

and you know all the whys and wherefores of this countdown, right? Homemade cookbook, friends contributed, Handyman said I couldn't/wouldn't do it, I'll show him, yadda yadda yadda....
...and the rest is cookbook history!




Just three simple ingredients and some seasoning.  Robbie uses Greek Seasoning, and I sauté this in a little bit of butter and olive oil, because the bacon grease is a rarity around here.  Not that we don't fry  up some bacon, but keeping the grease in an old coffee can on the back of the stove like my grandma did?  No.

I know, I know...some of you are saying cabbage? Really?
But it's just so warm and good and comforting.
I want some now!







So... Robbie.  My Friday Night Friend.
This is her 2nd recipe in the Friday Friend cookbook countdown  (see  here) but I have her 'tagged' 4 times, because of our Friday Night dinners.
But if you look here, you will see our two trips with took together this year--2016-- where I have her under the tag "Friday NIGHT Friends" 

My Robbie story?
Robbie (Roberta) taught 1st grade for a long time at the elementary school where I was the librarian.  She loves kids and is very encouraging of them -- she was never a flashy teacher, but in the library when I was reading to classes, if the subject somehow came up of a favorite teacher...Mrs. Milton always, ALWAYS was mentioned.
She believed in their potential and their honesty...

....which is good since one time (on a Friday night) when we ate at their home,  our grandson Camron was with us, he was probably 5 at the time, (he is  now 14) and she had grilled some chicken--which she had marinated in a tequila lime sauce before hand.
Camron, knowing that he should be polite said--at the dinner table--Grandma, this tastes just a little bit gross.

He tempered it! He did.  He prefaced it with "little".  Just a little bit gross.  Not a lot gross, just a little.

Do you know what Robbie did?  She about fell off her chair laughing!
And that's why I love her. 
Kids can be kids can be kids around her and it's all okay-- no matter what.

Robbie is a traveler.  2 pictures of her in Paris a couple of years ago.
She is going again in July.  She loves the city!


Love that photo bomber!!

She must have gone in April 3 years ago -- when she turned 70!  (that's another reason I love her---she is ageless).
They celebrated her birthday in Paris.


And that's my Robbie Story!

114 down!
284 to go!


Thursday, December 29, 2016

Friday Friend Countdown #113--Clam Sauce Spaghetti





I couldn't let the year end without one more recipe from the Friday Friend Cookbook!

I know I've been missing on the blog for a while  (since November 22nd to be exact)-- I just do that every once in awhile.  Life gets too crazy, I get to busy, I begin to question, why blog at all?
(so again, my hat is off to all of you who are able to do blog posts on time!!) But then, the craziness calms down and I can see that I do like to blog (meaning blab about my life, books, food, family, friends) and once again I appear. 
Just like that.

Of course---every other year I have to write a FAIL post about all the challenges I didn't do, but signed up for in January.  Only every other year, because I fail, quit challenges, get excited about them again and think I can do them, fail, quit, and so on....

Please just remind me at the end of 2017 NOT to sign up for any challenges.
None. Nada.  In no Way. Not a One!

Whew.  There.  Got that out of the way.
No one to my very own Friday Friend Cookbook Challenge.....




My Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown #113!
(#willreallyfinishthissomeday)

Barb's Clam Sauce for Spaghetti

and you know all the whys and wherefores of this countdown, right? Homemade cookbook, friends contributed, Handyman said I couldn't/wouldn't do it, I'll show him, yadda yadda yadda....
...and the rest is cookbook history!



This is my very favorite spaghetti sauce --ever!
My favorite in the history of spaghetti sauces.
Favorite of all time!
Give me a good clam sauce over marinara anytime.
But that's just me. 

A little side note:  for the longest time when we had our Friday Night friends, the Miltons, to dinner on--well, Friday night---my family would say "oh it's clam sauce again"  I make a mean clam chowder and a red clam sauce with linguine too.
Anyway, I guess I just like it a lot---and want to show it off.


I have put this recipe in the blog before, but I made it specifically for the FF cookbook countdown this time, but I copied and pasted the directions from a 2008 blog post of  mine in which I mention (see in the below description) that there are only two copies of the FF cookbook in existence.
I think there is about 10 now, because I made copies and sent them to  a few people.

From July 10, 2008:

If you want a more traditional white sauce (which I do often), this one of Barb's is VERY GOOD.
You will find it in the Friday Friend cookbook, of which there are only two copies in the world (we're working on that)

Clam Sauce

3 cans minced clams
1/2 cup butter
3 T. sliced green onions
1 t. minced garlic
2 t. parsley flakes
2 T. Flour
1/2 cup white wine
1/8 t. Thyme
8 oz cooked spaghetti

Drain clams. Add chicken broth to make 2 or 2 1/2 cups liquid. Sauté onions, garlic and parsley in butter. Stir in flour and cook 1 minute. Gradually stir in clam liquid, wine and thyme. Cook till thickened. Stir in clams and season to taste.
Serve over pasta tossed with 1/4 cup butter and 3 T. parm cheese




I am running out of my own photos of Barb (not to mention stories), so  I stole this from her Facebook page, where she said "Merry Christmas from the sunny beaches of Washington State"
She's from Arizona, but her son lives in Washington State, where she must have spent Christmas.
(she doesn't always check in with me and let me know her plans)


Sometimes I tend to get a little wordy in telling my stories--and a little photo heavy --but not today.  Keeping it simple for recipe #113 in the countdown--29 of which are Barb's.
My story is this:
We haven't seen each other in OMG, like 5 years?!?!  (can this be true??!)
And yet, on Facebook, recently it says that:
we are both gentle, funny, bold and gifted!
I don't know about me, but she is!
(and yes, that is a picture of my dog on Santa's lap. It was a fundraiser for heaven's sake.  I'm not that weird.  Or am I??)


She talks about me a lot!  Or at least she did in November.



And now... we need to do some traveling together!!




Barb loves me!
And that's my story.