Monday, March 20, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #122 -- Savory Pepper Steak





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

What is it, you may ask?

In a nutshell...
About 17 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 #122 MY Savory Pepper Steak



I cannot tell a like, I got this recipe years ago, from my mother-in-law, but I make it all the time (or I used to) and the Handyman loves it (maybe because it  was his mother's?), and it was inexpensive and in the crockpot (2 deal breakers when I had a young family ), also I was the one who turned it for the Friday Friend Cookbook---so I am claiming it.




This is good and easy!  If you don't like peppers, just don't eat them.
Tasty strips of round steak are seasoned (I think I seasoned them first) and then slow cooked with peppers (I always use green peppers, but red would work) and stewed tomatoes. 
I serve it with/over rice, but egg noodles would be just as good.
Oh...and the muffins.  Blueberry muffins out of a box--the cheapest I can find, because that's how I did it 30 years ago when the boys were little and we had no money.
It's a fall/winter nostalgic meal for me.


And now MY story (with a gazillion photos)

After 122 times of cooking and posting I have trouble thinking up stories about people--and this one is about me--so I started thinking 'what I am all about?'
And... I think I'm about groups.  Or Tribes!
I just read a book on why tribes are important to our psyche.  We want to be with people who support us and surround us and, well, the definition is:  a social division in a traditional society consisting of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect.

I like my tribes!
I like structure.  I like things to happen a certain way.  I don't like spur of the moment things. 
My friends tease me about this all the time.
Boring? Nah 
Look how much fun I have with my people!


I like Friday Nights with our Friday Night Friends....
and sometimes we go other places than just our homes!




I like 6am Bible Study on Thursdays with my 6am friends.....
at which we never take photos because we are usually in our jammies, but we also put Christmas in a shoebox this year for Operation Christmas Child, so I did take a few photos of that.  And we took our old Pastor out for breakfast before she moved a couple of times, so there are those photos, but mostly its' our jammies, our coffee and a bible study.







I like Girlfriend Tuesdays (the Handyman named it this) with Debbie Engstrom every Tuesday (again at 6am).....


 We were so young here!

And since we have coffee at 6am and we do always have our jammies on---there is no way that we have ever taken a picture of us at that time. 
This is the closest we have come:

And here we are now, but not at 6am  Tuesday Girlfriend Time.
This is from Tequila time!  (or cooking club--you will notice there is some overlap of friends from group to group here. Small town friendships and all)



I like ALL my  different book clubs once a month.....






I like Cooking Club  4-6 times a year.....






I like Wednesday lunches with these characters (we are doing EVERY restaurant in town this year and rating them).....





I like my 5x5 (which used to be a church group, but now isn't anything resembling 'church' at all-- we still all attend the same church-- it's just that what happens in the 5x5 stays in the 5x5) who get together 4-6 times a year.....
we used to  be a 6x6, but one couple moved away. We've been getting together for over 10 years!







We also made Christmas shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child this holiday season!




I like the "Clique".  Old friends who have been  meeting for coffee in the morning and then later in the day going to lunch every Friday for a gazillion  years......


We even have a CHICK CLIQUE frame!



Besides lunch, we always did birthday celebrations too!






I like this structure!  I like knowing that I have these friends and they have my back!
I love these people.

Then, last but not least--never least--I have the whole Friday Friends group, whom have all contributed to this cookbook in one way or another!







And that's who I am!

And that is recipe #122--
--out of 298!




Thursday, March 16, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #121 -- Fruity Slaw


Friday Friend Recipe #121 -- Tracy's Fruity  Slaw
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 #121
 
Tracy's:
Fruity Slaw


I love this!!
I don't know what else to say about it really.
When I was requesting salad recipes and Tracy sent this to me, she said "it sounds weird, but it's really good."
And she was right!
To be honest---the sound of cantaloupe and strawberries and cabbage didn't sound that appealing to me, but make it I did and...  it Was SO GOOD!! 
I loved it.  Just the right amount of sweet from the fruit and crunch from the cabbage.

Now that we can finally see a hint of spring on the horizon, I am looking forward to having more dishes like this---fresh and light--instead of the heavy winter dishes/comfort foods (read-calorie laden) that I've been making.

Fruity Slaw
Tracy White

3 cups cabbage
1 cup cantaloupe
1 cup strawberries
1/3 cup miracle whip
1 T. honey
1/4 t poppy seeds

Chop, dice, mix and enjoy!



I went to a luncheon (a book club luncheon) here in town and someone asked --what happened to that cookbook you were counting down?
(Hi Carrie!)
So, then I had to explain that I was going thru a slump and I DON'T KNOW WHY!  Altho, I think she has encouraged me to post the 25 drafts from the cookbook I have waiting.
And who knew someone was watching (Hi again Carrie!) me on Facebook?!  (as I always put a link on my Facebook page to my food posts).
I feel so special (me being a bit sarcastic)  (but then again... it IS special, right?)
So... I'm back!  Again!

My friend Tracy White sent in this recipe... she has since passed away, but here is a photo of she and her husband  Dennis--camping out in the high Nevada desert.
She loved camping and outdoor activities. And 4-wheeling.  And animals.

My funny story of her?
One time they went camping and on the way back home, stopped at a rest stop to use the bathroom.
If any of you have ever driven across the state of Nevada, you know it's pretty much WIDE OPEN SPACE and looks like a lot of hills and sagebrush  (just like an old western movie)... anyway Tracy's dog got out to potty too.
When everyone was done, they all got back in the SUV and took off down the highway, anxious to be home.  About 20 miles down the road, she said  "Where is Poppy?"  (a poodle) and THERE WAS NO POPPY!
They had left her on the side of the road!

They turned the vehicle around  (I'm sure Dennis was NOT grumpy about this at all) and drove 20 miles back thinking she'd run off into the hills of course, but there sat Poppy on the side of the lone Nevada Highway, just waiting for them to come back and get her.

That's my Tracy story.
This is the 2nd time I've posted a recipe from her in the countdown--she has a few more, so I'll be back with stories about Tracy!





This is recipe #121
out of
298.

And so it goes......




Saturday, March 4, 2017

Friday Friend Recipe #120-- Judy's Lazy Sauce


Friday Friend Recipe #120 -- Judy's lazy sauce
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 #120
 
Judy's:
Judy's Lazy Sauce




Describing spaghetti sauces is hard--there are about 15 recipes for sauce in the FF cookbook. 
And the truth is--I really like them all.
I'm kind of at a loss for adjectives to describe spaghetti.
This is really good!
I've used "really" and "good" before, but it's the truth!
Why go to all the trouble of simmering sauce all day when this fast and easy 'lazy' sauce tastes just as good?










This is Judy's 2nd appearance in the countdown.  Her last recipe was #74, the famous "great" margarita!  (which would pair perfectly with this spaghetti by the way.)

Let me first say that the Friday Friends, as well as politics, make strange bedfellows.
Not to say that my friends are strange, BUT this photo is from my son's wedding and I am pictured between 2 Friday Friends who didn't know each other before.
(the Friday friends was originally a forum of questions and answers that I would ask and compile from my friends and family from all over the place)
Judy is on the right and that's Theda on the left.
There were no formal seating arrangements for the reception-- I think I just grabbed these 2 out of towners and said,  "sit here!"  "be friends now, because you are a couple of my most favorite people in the whole world."
And they did!



Judy is a doer.  I'm kind of a non-doer.
Whereas she is the kind who is beautiful and ready to begin her day the moment she walks out of her bedroom in the morning, I am more of the sloucher, sitting around in  jammies, drinking  coffee kind. (to be fair, I get up and slouch around at 5, so I CAN be ready for the day by 7:30ish if I have to)
One day Judy called me up (we lived in California at the time) and said, come over here, we're doing a craft today.
I said okay, I'll come watch you do your craft and drink wine or something (I'm very good at that) but when I got there, she MADE ME do a craft with her.  And you know what?  It was very fun and cute -- we did puff craft paint on T-shirts --and it wasn't all that hard for me!
Judy made me get out of my box--and I was okay! 
We make a good pair.
I'm sure we had margaritas that afternoon...and chips and salsa (from Espana's).  I can't remember for sure, but now that sounds really, really, REALLY good.
A nice evening with Judy sounds good too right now.
Sometimes I hate the miles that separate me from my favorite people.



The Handyman and I joined  Judy and Duane and Theda and John at their table when we  finally sat down and ate.





Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Outdoor Wednesday

I have been so amiss lately (note to self, be sure and check & understand what amiss really means before I hit publish), here on my blog.  I pretty much disappeared for the past few months.  I guess I just needed a break. BUT most bloggers feel the need for a break and tell people.
They state it here:
I'm taking a break from blogging for a while.
But not me.
I just disappear.
I don't know that I feel like a break until I quit writing.
Then one week turns into 2 weeks and then---3 or 4 months have gone by.
Yikes!

Well, welcome back me. (I guess)



Here is my Outdoor Wednesday thought---

I guess I should give the book "The Shack" another try.
I'll be honest it wasn't my favorite.  It was a DNF for me, an abandoned book.
All my friends loved it tho! It was just not for me.
Perhaps it was because at the beginning of the book, a murder took place (not  a spoiler). And this murder took place here:



My home, my heart--a place that makes my soul complete!!!!

No one really has been murdered there!!!
I think it set the tone for the whole book for me --  I had a grudge.
(but to be fair, I didn't like "the Five People You meet in Heaven" either.  Maybe I just don't care for 'weird' heaven people and places?) I don't know why I can't get past that feeling of betrayal and get on with the book.
The movie comes out this weekend and everyone is so excited.
My mind is closed.  Stupid book, stupid movie.
But, perhaps I should give it another try (sigh).

The Handyman had a meeting for work, up north, so he took a quick morning trip to our cabin at Wallowa Lake while he was close. 
There has been a lot of snow this winter and we were all a bit worried about damage, but there seemed to be none.
He took these "outdoor" pictures on  Saturday.

No murders dear reader, but bears. Yes! And cougars, bobcats and lots of deer. Ornery raccoons, squirrels, chipmunks and birds.
(the Handyman saw footprints in the snow of a mountain lion, who had visited our cabin)

Here is how you get rid of them.... make yourself BIG!


The Handyman and a couple of his granddaughters, learning how to act big to scare away a bear if you meet one on the trail.
Evalynn must be thinking "there is no way this hand is going to scare away a bear!"

So, my outdoor pics are of a place I love. Which is featured for a moment, in a book,  where a bad thing happens.  Don't judge.
(this is so silly -- Stephen King uses the whole state of Nevada as an evil setting for some of his books and I don't mind that!! )


The real Wallowa Lake.
Not fake!
(I also have a grudge that they didn't film in the real place)
(I will get over this--I promise ~grins~)