Looking for a Few Good Recipes

You probably already know that I am a recipe addict. There are over 100 cookbooks in my house, which, for the record, is not “too many” by any stretch of the imagination.

WFDI share all kinds of recipes over at Mom’s Fridge, and I’m privileged to share meatless-meal ideas at CatholicMom.com as well. In fact, there is now a core team of four recipe bloggers who make sure there’s a meatless recipe every single Friday, and many other CatholicMom.com contributors will be sharing recipes in the coming weeks as well.

MF logoI am so thrilled that CatholicMom.com has run with the ball on this!

This past Friday, we did something a little different. We’re hosting a Meatless-Friday recipe link party at CatholicMom.com. It lasts the entire week, so that gives you plenty of time to find and share your family favorites. And with just over a month to go until Lent, it also gives you plenty of time to browse these shared recipes and introduce some new ones into your Lenten meal plan.

(And remember, Meatless Friday isn’t just for Lent. Read all about it!)


Fat Police

This morning, Little Brother and I went grocery shopping. Everything went well for the first 3/4 of the trip. We got nectarines, cucumbers, melon, bananas, celery, Cheerios, peanut butter, cookies (I had a coupon) and EVOO. Then we got to the dairy aisle, and that’s where things got ugly.

I reached for a gallon of milk, the kind with the red top that screams, “Full fat!” at the casual observer, and my skinny 10-year-old took me to task.

It’s got to be the propaganda that’s behind it. First of all, the kid doesn’t even drink milk–hasn’t in more than 8 years. I am the main consumer of that weekly gallon of milk, and I like my milk whole, thankyouverymuch. But boy, was I in trouble. “Why don’t you buy 2%, Mom?”

“Because I don’t like 2%. I like Real Milk.” We went along this way for a while, as I wheeled the cart along and picked up a pound of Real Butter and 18 Real Eggs and then headed toward the Coffee Nirvana section, where I once again bemoaned the fact that ShopRite never has quarts of light cream anymore.

“Half-and-half is just as good, Mom,” said my young Food Policeman.

“No, believe me, half-and-half is not just as good,” I sighed as I placed a quart of half-and-half in the cart sadly.

“Mom, I agree with that governor of New York about this,” he commented. (I think he meant “mayor,” but whatever. I was arguing for my Real Milk, not accuracy regarding government officials.)

Kid, I’m all for healthy, which is why I bought nectarines, cucumbers, melon, bananas, celery, Cheerios and peanut butter, and also the EVOO. But when it comes to dairy, I’m a full-fat kind of girl. And no one, not any governor or mayor or president or surgeon general or doctor on TV is going to tell me not to have my nice big glass of milk with dinner every night.

Real milk. With the red top. Ice cold. It’s the only way. I’m willing to sit down with the Fat Police over a cold one and discuss this, and I will not back down.

If You Take a Street Urchin to the Diner

If you take a Street Urchin to the diner, it is not advisable to order the Mexican Omelet.  (It’s my favorite. Green peppers, onions and Monterey Jack cheese, so says the menu, although in real life it’s more likely to be Cheddar.  Either way, it’s all good.)

So we went to the diner with Little Brother and Adventure Boy. And I ordered the Mexican Omelet, not knowing any better, because it’s my favorite, and it’s never been a problem before.

Then again, we don’t usually take Street Urchins to the diner.

My omelet was delicious, as usual. And then Adventure Boy, Master of All That Is Tactful, looked at it, made a face and said, “EWWWWWWWWWWWWW! That looks like big green BOOGERS!”

Thanks for that.

Putting the "Anti" in the Antipasto

A whole lot of dinner showed up here yesterday, thanks to three wonderful friends.  Fortunately, it all arrived early in the day, with cooking instructions, so we didn’t have to choose among three hot meals.

One meal came complete with antipasto.  I’m not sure how, but “antipasto” is a foreign concept to the males of this household.  The nature of the dish itself is as much a mystery to them as its pronunciation.
I swear, if someone calls it “ant-EYE-pasta” one more time, there might be violence committed.  I would not be convicted by a jury of my foodie peers–or my linguist ones, either.
Little Brother was a little leery of the idea of antipasto until I told him it was a big “ham-alami.”  That’s what he calls the ham-and-salami rollups that I sometimes make for his lunches.  When he came over to the table and saw the platter, he was sold.
Except for the Swiss cheese.  (How’d that get in there?)
In any event, it was all delicious and we’re looking forward to the equally-delicious-looking main course, which is almost hot enough to eat.

Grace Before Meals

I’m a big fan of Father Leo Patalinghug’s website and his cookbook (worth the purchase price to get that “secret” fajita recipe).

I have the feeling that someone at my daughter’s high school has also been influenced by Father Leo. Either that, or great minds think alike.

Tonight is the first night of “Tech Week” as the kids get ready for the spring musical. For seven nights of “Tech Week” (each weekday this week, as well as Monday & Tuesday of next week), a group of parents will arrive at school at 4 PM to cook and serve dinner to the 150 students participating in the play, stage crew and orchestra. It’s a way to make sure that these very busy kids get a good meal before rehearsal, rather than a fast-food sandwich. But it’s also a way to help the kids bond as they work toward a common goal.

I’ll be there to cook, serve and clean up on four of the seven nights, and I’m really looking forward to it. I think this will be a wonderful experience for all the “play kids”–and the parents as well.

And when the play is over, I’ll look forward to having the whole family back around my dining-room table again. But if the kids can’t be here, I’m glad they’ll be there.

Kicking the Can

I’m saying this here to boost my accountability.

It’s time for me to kick the habit.

My name is Barb, and I’m a Pepsi-holic. It’s time to get off the hard stuff and switch to water, iced tea, or lemonade.

Danielle has given up Diet Coke and that has pushed me into thinking that it’s time for me to do the same, and start looking for soda alternatives. I had already stopped buying Pepsi and bought some cans of Coke instead, and it just doesn’t taste as good to me, so I’ve already been a little motivated to avoid soda.

Yesterday was pretty easy.

But today…that can of Coke in the fridge is calling out to me, and it’s all I can do to avoid it.

Yes–I am fighting my very own Cola War right here.

Earlier today I googled “soda addictive” because I swear there’s something in these drinks that makes people compelled to drink more. I’m already drinking decaf soda, so it can’t be the caffeine. And really, soda has no redeeming nutritional value. There’s got to be some virtue in kicking this habit. Oh yeah–that would be “self-control.”

So I am off to refill my pretty, flowered glass with some more ice water while I laugh an evil, victorious laugh at the can of Coke as it gets shoved farther back into the dark recesses of the refrigerator.

Cheese Ingredient?

I don’t generally purchase foods that are too “processed” but I make an exception when it comes to shredded cheese. I’ve been able to get it cheaply, and I figure the extra expense is more than made up on the band-aids I’m not using when I shred my knuckles.

Yesterday my More-Health-Conscious-Than-Me Neighbor asked if I knew anything about an ingredient they’re putting in shredded cheeses: natamycin. According to the package of cheese in my refrigerator, it’s a mold inhibitor.

I didn’t mind when they tossed a little cornstarch in the bag of cheese to prevent the shreds from clumping, but I’m not feeling too good about this.

Guess it’s time to re-stock that kitchen band-aid box.