Monday, February 24, 2014

Brunch Noms

Ahh the power of teamwork. Can I say, usually, I do these kinds of things on my own, an I refuse help of any kind. Pride problem, much? This time, it was different. I delegated.  I now very much appreciate having help. One of my friends took care of the mimosa drink, and another slept over the night before and helped me clean the house and set up the photo booth area. I was so grateful, it allowed me to focus 100% on the food, which I wouldn't have been able to do otherwise. The menu was changed and altered, as some of the guests ended up not coming, so the amount of food was diminished.

The final menu was more simple, and I enjoyed it like that. We had baked blueberry & white chocolate French toast, a basket of croissants and roasted banana & chai butter muffins, simple fruit salad, baby spinach/citrus/berry salad, sweet potato/red pepper/green onion hash with eggs, peanut butter brownies, eggs and bacon scramble, and strawberry granola parfaits. Just simple and lovely. My mother in law gave me a loaf of banana chocolate chip bread so that was laid out as well. The light was beautiful, please excuse the multiple pictures of the parfaits but it just struck me as a tableau.

While I cleaned the brunch up and laid out the leftovers/doggy bags area, I invited my guests to go and leave their mark on my wall in my art room, and then we did the photobooth. Everything went great, smoothly, and without a hitch. I suggested we all pitch 5$ and we bought the lovely bouquet in the middle of the table and the birthday girl took it home and watched it bloom during the week. I would say it was an epic success. <3

Friday, February 21, 2014

a link and a quickie

First, the link. Isn't just the photo gorgeous? Sharing, working, community, intimacy, celebration - through food. It's my new ipad wallpaper.

Now, the quickie - I call it cheesy broccoli scramble:

Preheat a cast iron pan about medium on the stove. Cut in 1 head of broccoli, add a little water. Cook till green and lovely.

Meanwhile, combine 4 eggs and about 2/3 c cassava flour in a small bowl - best to first beat the eggs, then gradually add in the flour. Add a generous pinch of real salt, then grate in some cheddar to taste. Add a bit of pepper. Mix well.

Once the broccoli has cooked, add a bit of lard or ghee, let it coat the bottom of the pan, then add the egg batter. Let it cook, mixing and breaking apart with a wooden spoon every now and then, for about 5-10 minutes.

Enjoy hot. Serves one hungry woman and one hungry two-year-old (adjust as needed). Amazingly melt-in-your-mouth butterliciously good.

Monday, February 17, 2014

weekending and other notes

cassava pizza is really rocking our world. my current recipe is 1 c cassava flour, 2/3 c kefir, 2 eggs, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp baking soda, and a dash of oil. spread onto the smooth side of a silicone sheet, bake 15 minutes or so, then let cool. elevate on an oven-proof wire rack (as pictured), rub with a bit of extra oil, then dress and bake till cheese is as you like it.

paleomom's plantain muffins are amazing. going to try a vegan version this week with ripe plantain and flax.

salad for dinner - with hard-boiled eggs, just-cooked broccoli, cubes of mozarella, thinly-sliced peppers, apple, lettuce, and a balsamic dressing.

new batch of kraut fementing away - with red cabbage, rutabaga, carrot, jalepeno, cranberries, ginger and garlic.

the table set for valentine's day

valentine menu

Sunday supper - mussel pasta dish based on nonno's mussel linguine in Jamie Oliver's Italy, except we have no anchovies, so I used smoked herring, it was just so delicious, prominently but not overwhelmingly smoky, with the sweetness of the tomatoes and the fresh garlic - definitely a keeper. with orange and endive salad and white wine - fabulous.
I am reading French Women Don't Get Fat - as you may recall, I have a major thing for French food culture, so I am enjoying it very much. I knew I would like it because I once picked up the sequel at a second-hand store and gave it to my mom as a gift. It is all about pleasure, n'est pas? I have realized, reading it, that I do sometimes eat mindlessly or out of stress. Oui, meme moi! I am very determined to slim down my portions, say no to seconds, savour every morsel of calorie-dense food I indulge in, and lose 5-10 pounds by May (as I don't have a scale I suppose I'll have to be content with fitting better into my black wool skirt, which has sadly gotten a little tight at the waist). So I turned down a second dish of pasta last night (while Tony had THREE, which if you have observed Tony eat, you'll realize is  an enormous quantity for him), and did not eat my third egg at breakfast, but instead kept it for my slumbering husband. I cannot wait for the spring to come, to start seeing early greens and fresh goodies at the Atwater market, bien sur! I am so done with winter. Anybody with me?

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Brunch Time

So I've taken it upon myself to host a brunch for 8 ladies and myself next Sunday to celebrate one of my closest friend's 25th. To give you a short background note, she mostly organized my bachelorette (and it was awesome), has always made a point of participating to everyone's celebrations, and is just plain around always been there for everyone. On top of that, she's been under a lot of stress (new baby, etc) so I really want to make this girly and stress-free and beautiful for her. Here is my plan, I invite you to please comment and give any advice!
Here is my food plan:
  • The iron skillet will have a hash of sweet potato/onions.turkey sausage with eggs
  • Breakfast enchiladas of eggs, cheese, bacon, peppers
  • Overnight apple pie oatmeal will eb served directly in my mom's cute small crockpot
  • Overnight French toast strata with real maple syrup (none of that fake shit) and layered with whatever berry will be on special (Im hoping blueberries or raspberries)
  • On a 2 tier tea biscuit tower: bottom layer will have buttermilk waffles cut into quarters and dipped into dark chocolate, and the top tier will have thin crisper bowls filled with fruit salad
  • Making granola and filling champagne cups with strawberry layered granola (I did a test run of that and it looks soooo pretty)
  • A salad of baby spinach, toasted pecans, grapefruit segments, and dried cranberries with a sweet poppy seed dressing
  • a basket of banana/oatmeal.chocolate muffins and almond croissants with a couple of jars of my jam.
There will also be a 'drink bar' with a fruity mimosa punch bowl, coffee, tea, hot chocolate. I've also organized a pitch in to buy a floral arrangement for the food table that she will take home as a gift from all of us. And lastly I've invited all the ladies to wear their cute dresses and floppy hats as a theme, and will set up a DIY photo booth with accessories. I'm largely deleguating the photo booth to one of my friends who has a camera and accessories that she can set up, and the mimosa is the responsibility of another friend. The photo booth friend is sleeping over the night before to help me prep and some things can be made this weekend and frozen (waffles, muffins, granola). Im feeling confident about this, and I really want to do this right for her.

Any thoughts/criticism/advice?