Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A Good Woman

Single, white, 40-something female looking for love in all the wrong places. Cooks well with recipes (mostly vegetarian); likes animals; can read, write and do sums; has steady job and retirement plan; can shoot shit pretty good with several types of firearms; loves to travel, read, and watch movies; athletic and adventurous; keeps a very neat and clean home; has good taste. No physical or mental deformities or aberrations; no children; no addictions (well, drinking wine alot shouldn't count). Apply if you dare.

Monday, December 19, 2011

One Day

I wish just once I could say it out loud. Scream it from the roof tops - without wincing first or scoffing last.
I wish one day I could say it with conviction. Know it to be true - believe it in my heart.
Just once I'd love to speak it with my whole heart and a big goofy grin - without feeling like a fool.
Just once I'd love to not efface it with derision or dread how it will end - refuse to heed wisdom.
Rush headlong into it with joy and abandon,
Not caring the result or consequence.
To leave behind my hesitation, my wariness. My weariness.
To feel light-hearted again, just once. Like I did so many years ago.
To believe again. Just once.
That day will never come, for
One day, it will go.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Holiday Gravy

Makes: 2 c.

3 tbsp. olive oil
2 onions, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
4 oz. white mushrooms, halved
3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2 c. white wine
4 sun-dried tomatoes, quartered
2 sprigs fresh marjoram
1 sprig fresh thyme
2 1/2 c. water
2 tbsp. flour

1. Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onions, carrots, mushrooms, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cover, and cook 1/2 hour, or until soft, stirring occasionally. Uncover pan, increase heat to medium and cook 7-10 minutes more, or until vegetables are browned and caramelized.

2. Add wine; simmer 2-3 minutes, or until 2/3 of liquid has evaporated. Stir in tomatoes, marjoram, thyme, and 2 1/2 c. water. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer 30 minutes. Strain into a large measuring cup, pressing vegetables with a spoon to release liquids.

3. Heat remaining 1 tbsp. oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in flour, and cook 5 minutes, or until flour begins to turn golden. Whisk in the vegetable liquid. Cook 3-5 minutes, or until gravy thickens, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, and serve.

Hard Sauce

1 c. sifted, powdered sugar
1/4 c. butter, softened
1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a small mixing bowl beat together powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla with an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes or until light and fluffy. Cover and chill to harden, about 30 minutes. Makes 1/2 c.

Great Turkey Gravy

Serves: 6
Prep: 45 minutes


Giblets and neck from the turkey
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 c. celeriac (celery root) or 2 stalks celery, chopped
3 1/2 c. water
2 tsp. sea salt
4 peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 sprig fresh thyme (or 2tsp. dried)
3 sprigs fresh parsley


4 tbsp. fat from turkey pan drippings
4 tbsp. white flour
1/2 c. cream or 1/4 c. plain yogurt
2 tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1/2 tsp. minced fresh sage or thyme

1. While turkey is roasting, place stock ingredients in a saucepan and cook on medium low at least 30 minutes. For a richer stock, simmer on low for 2-3 hours. Remove giblets and neck from the stock and if you wish, chop giblets and neck meat and set aside. Strain stock and set aside.

2. Prepare gravy in the roasting pan after the turkey has been removed and set aside to “rest.” Make sure to use hot pads when handling the pan.

3. Pour roasting pan juices into a glass measuring cup and allow ft to rise to the top. Skim fat from juices. Discard remaining fat. Reserve juices.

4. Place roasting pan over medium heat on the stove top. Add reserved 4 tbsp. fat and gradually sprinkle in flour, mixing vigorously with a wooden spoon. Scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the roasting pan, being careful not to let flour mixture burn. Once the flour is thoroughly incorporated and the mixture is browned, whisk in the stock and remaining pan juices. (Use enough liquid to equal about 5 c.) Simmer, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

5. Place one cup of gravy in a measuring cup and stir in three ice cubes to cool slightly. Mix in cream or yogurt and fresh herbs; then add to the pan of gravy. If desired, add the giblets and neck meat. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.