Archive for the ‘random!’ Category

Not a real post

I promise I’ll have a real live, legitimate post soon.  Really.  It’s just that I’ve been looking for a job and, you know, the economy is going down the toilet and I’m really easily distracted by articles that promise I can monetize my blog* and posts about what I should be doing with my resume, but not so distracted that I don’t still feel compelled to at least make an attempt to find a job, so the blog and baking have fallen by the wayside.  Which is sad and for two reasons.  One because both are my favorite things to do and two because I have both a Daring Bakers challenge and two Tuesdays with Dorie due (yes, I am a hopeless joiner).  Really, I’m so far behind I don’t know if I’ll ever catch up.  Maybe there’s something on the Internet I can read about panic attacks…

Anyway, I was checking my email compulsively (like you do) and I had a bit of spam.  I’m always curious what Gmail comes up with for ads in the spam folder and here you’ll have to forgive me.  I’m not an “early adopter.”  I just started blogging, I just started using Gmail – you’d think I’d just discovered that there was a magical way to talk to other people on your computer a few weeks ago.  So when I was cleaning out my “spam” and saw an ad for


I had to click on it.  Spam Swiss Pie?  Do the Swiss know what Spam is?  Maybe everyone does and I’m just clueless.  Anyway, because I don’t have anything else to post, here is the recipe I was treated to for my index finger full of effort.

*  Exported from  MasterCook  *

                               SPAM SWISS PIE

 Recipe By     :
 Serving Size  : 6    Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : Pies                             Main dish

   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
    1                    Deep dish pie shell (9")
    6                    Eggs
    1       c            Whipping cream
    1/8     t            Pepper
    1       cn           SPAM Luncheon Meat, cubed
                         -(12 oz)
    1/4     c            Chopped onion
    2       c            Shredded Swiss cheese,

   Heat oven to 425'F. Bake pie shell 6-8 minutes. Reduce oven
   temperature to 350'F. In bowl, beat together eggs, whipping cream,
   and pepper. Stir in SPAM and onion. Sprinkle 1 cup cheese in pie
   shell. Pour egg mixture over cheese. Sprinkle remaining cheese over
   egg. Bake 45-55 minutes or until eggs are set.

I’m a little mortified that I’m about to say this, but it might be really good.  Especially if you’ve had a glass or two of box wine, which I’m certainly down with.  If you make…Spam Swiss Pie, will you please be sure to let me know how it turned out?


*Uh, how come WordPress’s spell checker doesn’t know the word “blog?”

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Five minute bread?

Hey!  I’m back!

Apparently I was effected by the Presidential election a bit more than I anticipated (I don’t really get in to politics) because I’ve actually been thinking about the country (all in all, not a bad thing to do with one’s time) more than I’ve been thinking about baking since the election.

But, I did recently stumble upon a book called “Artisan Bread In Five Minutes” by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois – how could I not be intrigued?  Artisan bread?  That means yummy.  Five minutes?  That means easy.  I immediately put the book on hold at the library (the budget and extra space around here don’t allow for new books that haven’t been test-driven) and I’m number 22 on the hold list!  There was no way that I was going to be able to wait around that long to try out something that sounded so promising.  Thank god for Al Gore.  I poked around and found an excerpted recipe for the basic white loaf and


Not bad looking!  This is the second loaf I made from the original dough, and I did need to make some modifications.  I’ll make a more complete review once I’ve actually got the book in my hot little hands, but for now, I’m going to have a snack.


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Gotta gotta have it

What could be better than a post that both links to a fine blogger and also writes itself because it’s just a point to a fine blogger? Good bar of chocolate maybe. Marrying your best friend. Sunday dinner and a new recipe. Ok, a few things, but it’s still pretty damn cool and anyway, I digress. This post is about something else…

Namely, cool stuff you might need, all compiled into a nice list (with pictures!) courtesy of Lynn at A Hot Dish. I love both the list (practical and useful with photos of the items and clear explanations of why you need them) and the blog name – I have no doubt that Lynn is a hot dish herself as well as being able to make a casserole that will both kick your ass (in a gentle comfort food kind of way) and make you weep from homesickness.

The only thing I see missing is a potato ricer, but that’s just because I’m crazy for gnocchi. How about you? Anything you’d want to add to Lynn’s list? It’s almost Christmas…

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I noticed recently that several of the people I “know” online are wearing sweaters and scarves in their avatars and photos.  I live in Los Angeles.  It was 97 degrees on Tuesday, October 28.  That’s three days before November.  Seeing people in photos all bundled up makes me think “how can they wear that in this heat?”

The lack of seasons here is disorienting.  I’m not ever really sure what time of year it is.  A friend yesterday said “I can’t believe you’re 40!” (and honestly, neither can I) and I said “I can’t believe you’re 40!” and she said (this is getting ridiculous) “I’m 41!”  And I had to think for a second and remembered, oh yes, it’s October, her birthday was a few months ago.

I think one of the reasons it is hard to believe that I’m 40 is that I’ve spent the last four years here.  I was 36 when I came here, still in my mid-30s.  Now I’m in my 40s, but the weather has made it seem like we’ve just been sort of living 2004 for…a very extended period of time.  Those moments I remember that four years have passed I find myself sort of surprised.

I’m not complaining, exactly.  It’s nice to have sandal weather when the rest of the Northern Hemisphere is covered in snow.  And being in Los Angeles has been incredibly productive for us.  But there is something kind of…stunting about eternal sunshine.  Something that kind of holds you in the same place, even as you move forward.  If the seasons never really change, how do you know that time is passing?

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I just got back from my walk about and stopped at the fridge (after plowing down an ample helping of last night’s leftovers standing right there in the middle of the kitchen) and noticed this list on an envelope, magneted (is that a word?) to the fridge door:

This is what it says:

3-4 sliced garlic

Zest on lemon
med heat
1/2 cup water fr/noodles
squeeze lemon completely

fresh Parmesan

I looked at it for a few seconds and thought “that sounds great – we should try that!” and then realized that not everyone would know that the list is really a recipe (cook the sliced garlic in oil, cook pasta in salted water, drain, reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water, add to the oil and garlic, add the juice of one lemon and the zest, reduce sauce, toss with pasta and serve with grated Parmesan cheese).

All that to say, every once in a while I’m reminded that as much as I don’t know what I’m doing (which is what makes cooking a fun adventure), I also do know what I’m doing.

Have faith in your ability.  You know more than you know.

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A fine chap named Chuck Westbrook has suggested an idea for increasing readership of under-read blogs that’s so genius, it kind of looks like a pyramid scheme…

Before you run in fear, check it and join in the fun.  Every two weeks, a new blog.  Broaden your horizons.  Do a good blog deed.


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It’s too hot to bake

That’s right.  I said it.  It’s too hot to bake.  It’s almost the end of October and the high today is 97.  That’s 3 short of 100.  In October.

I think there is a place on earth where it’s snowing right now, but I don’t know where that is.  If you live there, would you send me some snow?

If I were going to bake, I’d bake a fantastic onion and anchovy tart with puff pastry.  If you make one, let me know.


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