Sunday, February 28, 2010

Peanut Butter Bars

I had planned to make these the other weekend but never got around to it.  After our neighbor brought over his snowblower and helped us clear off the driveway the other day (and also a couple weeks ago!) it was time to give him a proper thank you.  Plus it meant I could make this dessert without eating them all ourselves!
All the ingredients, minus the salt:
Mix 1 cup each of butter, sugar and brown sugar.  Plus 2 eggs.  Then 1 cup creamy peanut butter.
Then 2 cups of flour and oats, 1 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp vanilla
It gets really thick.
My arm was so tired after evenly spreading it out on a big pan...
It bakes for 15 minutes on 350 degrees.  Next up will be the topping of 2 cups chocolate chips and 1.5 cups creamy peanut butter. (actually the recipe has conflicting info because one part says 1 cup peanut butter for the topping and another part says 1.5 cups, so my solution was to go somewhere in between the two options)
Out of the oven to cool for 20 to 30 minutes.
Mmm, nice crispy edges.
Spread the peanut butter on top.
Melt the chocolate chips and spread on top of peanut butter.
All done!
It seems I have more success with baking instead of cooking...I am going to keep practicing at both.  :-) 
Please share any favorite recipes.  Thank you!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Mushroom and Bacon Pasta

I often come across recipes that claim to be "EASY" but don't fit in Suzanne's "EASY" category.  This was the case with The Pioneer Woman's Mushroom and Bacon Pasta.  But we made it work for dinner tonight. 

All our dinner ingredients ready to go:
First thing I did was mince 3 cloves of garlic.
Cut 3 slices of bacon (ok, I used 4) in 1/2 inch pieces and cook in 2 tbs olive oil on medium high.
After the bacon has browned, remove it from the oil and toss in sliced mushrooms and garlic.
Once mushrooms have turned golden brown add 1 cup of chicken stock.  After that was reduced by half I added 1.25 cups of half and half.  (the quarter cup is meant to be heavy whipping cream but I didn't have it)  It's supposed to thicken up but it didn't really.  Hmmm.
Add 3 sliced green onions.  Also mix in 1/2 cup grated parmesean cheese right at the end.  You are supposed to top with chopped parsley but I didn't have that either.  Mix it with Angel Hair pasta and sprinkle on some salt and pepper and a little extra cheese and VOILA!
I thought it was quite good with a very rich flavor, but I think we should have cooked the pasta al dente (cooking the sauce took longer than we expected).  I'd still call it a success and it's always fun to try new dishes. We have a ton leftover so it looks like more pasta for dinner tomorrow.
(UPDATE: leftovers are very good, almost better than the first time around!)
PS When I first started a blog there was a spell check feature but I haven't seen it in months, so please excuse any misspellings...and let me know if you think it's hiding somewhere, pretty please.

City Winery Show

This is evidently a link heavy post, but I just couldn't help myself.  Pat and I got to join some of his work friends for a show on Thursday night.  The whole night was such a blast.  City Winery is kind of like a dinner theatre type place, where you sit and enjoy the show at tables and you can order dinner and drinks.  Our table was really close to the stage so we had a great view.  
First up was Mikey Wax who preformed solo, playing keyboard, guitar, and piano.  He was fabulous and I liked all of his songs.  Video here.
Next up was Serena Ryder who I liked even more.  She's Canadian and has been singing since she was a little girl and I just loved her stage presence and song lyrics.  And she had adorable miniature guitars!  I definitely want to buy her cd.  In the meantime, you can listen to some of her songs right here. And a video here.  Live music is always fun but it's especially fun to discover people you've never heard of, right?
Howie Day preformed solo too, but if you were listening with your eyes closed you would never know it.  He does a lot of looping and had some fun with it too.  I thought he was pretty darn funny on stage.  You probably know of him for his song Collide.  Video here. And some music here.  I saw Ray Lamontagne solo a few months back which I also enjoyed, but Howie was way better!
We went to the early show which meant our show was over by around 9PM.  That made me happy since we still had to trek home afterwards.  Anyhow, I sure hope to go back to this venue again for some new tunes and delicous food and wine.  Fun stuff!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Weekend Ahead

It's time for our last weekend in February!  We got a ton of snow yesterday, last night, and today.  We cleared most of the driveway before bed last night but this morning you couldn't even tell we'd put in all that work.  Oh well!  Bus service was cancelled and I am at home today!

My weekend plans:
  • Levon Helm concert at the Wellmont Theatre - it was scheduled for tonight but it's been rescheduled for next month due to all the snow.
  • Shopping at Macy's tomorrow before my gift card expires on the 28th.
  • Pickles - Pat is making up another batch.
  • Check out Warren and Alyssa's new house hopefully.
  • Cook up a new recipe - Pasta with Bacon and Mushrooms, more bacon please!
  • Brunch and hanging out with Maura on Sunday.
PS Happy birthday to my work friend Michelle! :)

OK I have to share a yummy frozen pizza we had earlier this week...and the box cracks me up:
Italy's Number One Pizza - Product of Germany
When you're gone for 12 hours a day Monday through Friday, you have to rely on frozen food a little bit.  I bought several of these when they were on sale for $2.99 at our grocery and I have to say they are delicious.  If I ever see them at that price again I am filling up my cart.


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Found Photos

I have a lot of photos that I took before the blog and I'd like to share some of them with you every once in a while.
These photos were taken on Long Island's eastern point - Montauk, NY. 
September 2006

They look especially nice considering I'm in a snow storm right now. :-P

Say Say

Happy birthday Sarah!!!!  
My nickname for my sweet cousin is Say Say (I think that stems from my former speech problem with R sounds...).  From swimming in her neighbor's pool to talking about being college roommates on my old trundle bed, we have a lot of good memories between us.  Our families are so close and it's just wonderful.  Suz Puz sure loves her Say Say!
And let's just remember... 29 years ago AC gave birth to you at HOME. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Another Puzzle

You can tell Pat has been studying a lot based on all my recently completed puzzles.  This is one I found in the hall closet - not sure if it's my mother in law's or if it's Aunt Mae's.  Good one:
I might take a short break from puzzles...but who knows!

PS I finished reading Half Broke Horses on my commute home last night.  Loved it. 
Almost makes me want to reread The Glass CastleI highly recommend both books. 

Just started The Last Days of Dogtown this morning.  So far so good.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Cookies and Milk

Plus a little coffee thrown in there. 
Quite a nice little afternoon snack on this rainy and cold day in New York.


What a cute can. Sorry nothing good to post today. :o)

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Plunge

Happy Monday!
I had mentioned the other week about my sister doing a Polar Bear Plunge in support of the Special Olympics.  The event raised over $35,000!

My Dad went out to watch and took a few pictures.  E won the best costume award for her fat suit and even said I could post a picture. 
Here is an article by the Nashville City Paper.

In other exciting sister news, she has adopted a puppy!!  Little Briley gets picked up on Thursday.  She's a chocolate lab and russell terrier mix I think.  Can't wait to meet her on my next trip to Nashville!