Thursday, November 14, 2019

What Should I read next part 2

I think I was supposed to report back here last Saturday and tell you what book you chose for me to read this month--and it is....

Yay!  Another book to add to my reading this month.
I say that only slightly sarcastically, because I chose to do this, right?

This is what I'm reading right now:

The Lilac Girls
The Crossing Places 
Glamorous Powers  (It's my Slow and Steady Read--10 minuets a day is all)

Those above are all for my own enjoyment.
Then my book clubs in November?
The CCB (coffee, conversations and books) Club--The Bookman's Tale
Totally Lit- Don't Skip Out on Me
Lit Wits- The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society
Reading Between the Wines Romance--Stuffed

And I'm trying to listen to The Gown on Audible. But it's not going well.  I need a long car trip or something.  Or I need to clean my house. THAT'S IT!  Tomorrow I 'll be cleaning out the 'grandchildren's room' -- which is another term for one of my extra bedrooms where everything gets tossed!

Anyway, that is what I'm reading this month.

In September, for our Totally Lit book club, one of our members, Cathy,  had just gotten back from the Basque (Spain) Country  (we have a huge Basque population in Winnemucca) and she wanted to make  us an authentic meal. And she choose the book Guernica

An extraordinary epic of love, family and war set in the Basque town of Guernica before, during, and after its destruction by the German Luftwaffe during the Spanish Civil War.

 She paired up with another of our book club friends, Keeli,  who had been to the Basque country over the summer too.
They ran into each other at a café in Spain.  (how funny is that?!)
Because?--the Basque community is a small community after all!
I mean, you leave Winnemucca, NV, fly to Spain, go to Guernica, meet someone from Winnemucca, NV who is in  your book club!
It happens.

But the book club story?
Cathy was doing the cooking, but it was going to be at Keeli's house.
Keeli's daughter was taking her solo pilot license test the same day.  It was scheduled for the morning in a town 2 hours away--Keeli  went with her daughter.  
It began to rain (even tho the weatherman said it wouldn't) , so they waited and waited and waited.

They did not plan on the rain--- but they were stuck.  What could you do if your instructor says we'll fly as soon as the rain lets up?
Mid-afternoon, I got a call from Keeli explaining that she wasn't in town and that her daughter had just taken off in the plane for her test, and she would be late for book club,  but her house was still available and could I go help Cathy out with the cooking, etc.
I said, sure, does Cathy know?

Keeli said,  No and  I'm not telling her.  She'll freak out.  I'll tell her when she arrives and can't get in my house--she'll call me and I'll give her the code so she can get in.
So...April and myself arrived to help Cathy prepare a Basque meal in a kitchen none of us were familiar with.
It was tons of fun!
(actually Keeli has THE BEST Knives in the world--I thought of stealing them--and her kitchen is the easiest to cook it and entertain around)
Keeli arrived in the middle of book club and then we all gave her a bad time about not having to be home to host a book club.
It can be done!

Cathy made paella and croquettes and Spanish torta (2 or 3 different kinds) and salad and good cheese from the Basque country and tinned anchovies and tuna packed in oil and bread and wine and so much more!
So yummy!

We had such a good time that evening.  
The food was great!
Here are some pictures 
 (there are a lot, as you know I always overshare)

It really was a BOOK CLUB, but I don't see one book in sight!

You had to pour it this way--Cathy said!

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Friday Friend Recipe #240 and #241 - Cranberry Sparkle Punch and Crab and Cheese Fondue

Come with me as I continue to countdown my Friday Friend Cookbook!
What is it, you may ask?
In a nutshell....
About 20 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!
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 us to Recipes #240 and 241, Tracy's Sparkle Punch and Barb's Crab and Cheese Fondue!

Last year I had a cocktail party.
I'm pretty sure it was New Year's Eve.
Theresa's husband Mike had to work late.
April took ill and had to leave--so it was just two couples and half of each other couple.

I think by now (if you've read all 240 of the cookbook countdowns) you can tell who goes with whom.  Or mix and match us!  It'll be okay.

(am not a fan of that word, but it seems to work here)
I had a cocktail party on New Year's Eve.
Where I made this great Cranberry Sparkle Punch from the Friday Friend Cookbook.

And then I made this great Crab and Cheese Fondue recipe of Barb's.

 It's so yummy!
In fact, I even got a text the next day from Theresa:

Cuz there he is--in my kitchen---messing with my cooking!
I am being sarcastic about thanking him! I?
He was in there messing with stuff!
And that IS the cheese dip he's messing with!!

An email that I sent out earlier in the afternoon...
I am in green.

My friends are too kind!  LOL  
But I actually do know what I'm doing in the kitchen.
I was following Barbara Brown's recipe to the tee!
And he was trying to tell me what to do, what to add in to it, how to make it.

It really was perfect just the way it was.

The moral of the story is:
Never let a bored husband mess around with a friends famous dip.
Or something like that. 

And that is enough story for this post!

Here are the recipes.  Add vodka to the punch if you want to step up the festiveness. 

My friends I bring to you recipes #240 and #241

Only 126 left to go!

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Friday Friend Recipe #239 - Peanut Butter Bars

Making my way thru my Friday Friend Cookbook, one recipe at a time.

What is the Friday Friend cookbook? I once had about 50 of my closest friends and family (from all over the county) on an e-mail forum which I called the Friday Friends . At first, most of them didn't know each other, (they knew me) but over the past 20 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. (plus so much more....)

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 thinks he 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 #239
Tomi's Reese's Peanut Butter Bars

These are good!  So, Soooo good.
They taste exactly like a  Reese's Peanut butter cup.

Reese's Peanut Butter Bars (a copycat recipe)
Tomi Pingree

1 lb. powered sugar
2 cubes melted butter
1 wrapper graham crackers--crushed
1 1/2 cups peanut butter

Mix all together and press into a 9x13 pan.
Melt 12oz chocolate chips and spread over the top.
Refrigerate till firm and cut.

These are  yummy beyond yum!
My mom always made the Buckeyes at Christmas time, but the rolling and dipping proved to be too much for me--perhaps that is the epitome of laziness, but these bars are to die for and they have the same ingredients, peanut butter and chocolate, so why not do what is easy?

This is Tomi's 5th appearance in the Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown.
You can see all her recipes here.

I was looking thru some of my old Friday Friend Notebooks ( I secretly printed out sheets and sheets of emails ---I can be the WHISTLE BLOWER of the Friday Friend Forum--I know all their secrets!)  to see if something struck a memory to write a story about Tomi--I found a few of her answers to the everyday silly questions I would ask my 'Friday Friend Forum'.

In the fall of 2006, I asked these questions:
Do you like Applets and Cotlets?
Are you a hugger?
Do you wear rubber gloves when cleaning/doing dishes?
List 4 jobs you've had in your lifetime.

I know that For Christmas the year before, Tomi's mother-in-law received some Applets and Cotlets and that Tomi did not like them as they have a weird texture to them.
In her humble opinion.

Here is what she said about hugging...
To hug or not to hug.  You know that I am  not a hugger.  I do hug, but mostly my family and close friends.  I'm not a casual hugger. I like my personal space. I will admit that I'm getting better at hugging and being hugged--when you teach little kids, you're getting hugged all the time, so I've come to appreciate the spontaneous hug now and then.

Rubber Gloves when cleaning or doing dishes?
No I don't wear rubber gloves--they make me feel claustrophobic.  Weird, I know.

And four jobs in her lifetime:
Cashier at Skaggs Drug, ticket taker at the local movie theater, Credit Evaluator at a bank,  and teacher.
I would have to say that being a teacher has probably been the oddest and most rewarding job.  Odd in the sense that you never know what is going to happen-kids o and say strange things, and rewarding in the sense that teaching opens up possibilities to kids. 

Rewarding?  Perhaps, but the best story comes from her time as a cashier at Skaggs Drug.
A guy comes up with some condoms and Tomi, being young and naïve (high-school, 1974ish) called for a price check on Trojans.  

And that is my Tomi Story!
See... I do know everything!  About all my Friends!
And I never forget!! 

Below is a photo of Tomi (on the right) and our good friend Dink Gootman Schemenkminor on the left.  (it's a long story---her professional social worker peers just call her Dorothy Minor)
Dink/Dorothy never was on the Friday Friend Forum.  She said she didn't do computers once she was off work.
We've been friends for year, so once in a while I'll stick her photo in here too!

This was at one of my son's wedding receptions about 17 years ago.

Well I spent this past weekend trying to figure out exactly how many recipes I have left to do.
I have made 257 recipes.
This one will make 239 I've posted.
When I did a count of recipes not made yet, I came up with 99.
THEN I crossed referenced how many recipes of each Friday Friend I had left to make and I came up with 100.

I will recount sometime this week, as this will drive me crazy!
But for now--- this is where we stand.

My friends I bring to you recipe #239

Only 128 left to go!
(or 127 if my count is wrong )

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it!

Friday friend recipe number 274 and 275-Grapefurit Shrimp Salad and Crispy Potato Chicken

  My Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown #274 and 275 My Mother-in-law's Grapefruit Shrimp Salad and Crispy potatoes . and you know all th...