Wednesday, November 23, 2011

We're off to see the Wizard...

We're off to Big Bend, y'all!  Checking oil, loading up, forgetting things...

I'll be glad to get out into the wild after spending so many frantic hours in front of the computer seeing if I was winning the Apartment Therapy contest (not).  Time for some hot springs in the river and food by the fire.

Thank you all SO much for voting for me in the contest.  I don't think it's actually over yet, but I'm down by 100 points or so and I just don't know any more people! Hahaha. 

I hope you have a wonderful holiday, if you do celebrate this one.  We call it "Grateful Day" around here.  Hey, maybe we should all wear tie-dye and play  Grateful Dead songs all day.  Or not. 

Anyway, I'm so grateful for so many family, my friends, my life, YOU!  I am one lucky girl, I tell ya.

Oh, yea, and Roberta told me I ought to repost that incredible greens and potato recipe from the Bryant Terry cookbook in case anyone was looking for something interesting to cook for TG.  Great idea!!! 
Here ya go, chicas!  
PS Remember - it sounds more complicated than it is.  
PPS Follow the recipe exactly (except you can use cow milk if you want like us heathens over here.)

 3-4 medium yellow potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4 rounds (I used red potatoes because that's what I had.)
6 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano 
Coarse sea salt (any salt is fine, really)
1 bunch collard greens, trimmed and chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 bunch mustard greens, trimmed and chopped into bite-size pieces ( I used swiss chard cuz that's all the store had that was similar.)
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1 cup panko bread crumbs (you could use very finely ground bread crumbs, but panko is easy to find in most stores and I highly recommend using it.  It's just a kind of bread crumb.)
1 1/2 cups unflavored rice milk (I used regular)

*Preheat oven to 450 F
*In a large bowl, toss the potatoes with 1 tablespoon olive oil, the chili powder, red pepper flakes, thyme, oregano, and 1/4 teaspoon salt
*Transfer potatoes to a parchment lined baking sheet (I did not have any parchment so I just lightly sprayed the pan with Pam stuff), spread in one layer, and roast for 20 minutes. Gently turn the potatoes over with a fork and roast for another 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and browned. (Mine were done after the first 20 minutes and I did not put them back in.)
*While the potatoes are roasting, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot.  Add 2 teaspoons of salt and the greens and cook, uncovered, for 5 minutes until shrunk down.  Drain in a colander.
*In a heavy, wide saute pan, combine 2 tablespoons of olive oil and the garlic.  Turn the heat to medium and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute (don't burn the garlic!). Add the greens and 1/2 teaspoon salt, raise the heat to high, and saute, stirring often, until the greens are well coated with oil and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 2 minutes.  Remove from heat.
*Transfer the greens to a colander and press them gently to extract their excess liquid. Remove to a cutting board and coarsely chop. (They'll be hot. Go ahead and let them cool a bit.)
*In a small bowl, combine the bread crumbs with 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
*Lightly oil a casserole dish (I used a small, square, glass one).  Arrange one layer of the potatoes on the bottom. Spread half of the greens over the potatoes and repeat.  Pour the milk over the top of the whole thing.  Spread the bread crumbs evenly on top of the gratin, cover with aluminum foil, and bake for 45 minutes.
*Remove the foil and place under the broiler for just a few minutes (very few) to brown the top.
*Add pepper to taste and serve immediately. (I forgot to do this. The pepper, not the serve.)
*Scarf down like a wild animal and ask for more.

Ho cakes are just your favorite unsweet cornbread recipe made soupy and cooked on a griddle like pancakes.
Chipotle aioli is made by cutting up 3 or 4 garlic cloves and throwing them in a blender or food processor with 2 or 3 canned chipotle peppers and  several globs of mayonnaise.  Blend it all up and adjust to taste.  You can't go wrong; those are the ingredients, make it like you like.  Slather that on your ho cakes.
You'll need beer (or milk or water or beer) as both the casserole and the aioli are a tad spicy.  Good spicy, not ulcer spicy.

Then you can bow your ass down to me as the goddess who introduced you to this bounty.   Bow down, I say.

Oh, and buy that book because if everything in here is as good as this...holy crap, it's a brave new world, Aldous! 
(You can buy it over there on the right hand column in the section called My Favorites.  I get about 2 cents if you click through and buy it from here. )

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I made the FINALS!!!

Ooo, I'm just TOO nervous to talk about anything but the Apartment Therapy contest going on now!

I have no idea why I would put myself through such torture by entering this contest.  

Did I need or want the $1,000 gift certificate from Farrow & Ball?  Nope.
Did I need or want the Eames plastic chairs?  Nope.

What. The. Hell. Was. I.  Thinking?  I am a crazy woman.  Crazy, I tell you.

Oh, well, nothing to do now but get on with it and hope to win.  That west coast girl is absolutely rabid to win though so...who knows? 

I feel tres happy to have made it to the finals and have so many people say such wonderful things about The Wabi-Sabi House.  La la la.

We're off to Big Bend for Thanksgiving so I may not even know if I win or not!! 
Oh, wait, it's 2011...there's no way not to know. 
Just picture me driving across the wide expanse of Texas looking not at the scenery, but my IPhone.  

Sad, but honest, my pretties.  And I am nothing if not honest.  Heeee heeeee.

Onward to victory in the next 36 hours!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I've been out of my mind with desire ever since I saw this post on Ohdeedoh:

I'm gonna show you the final version just in case you don't feel like popping over there for a look at the whole tutorial...

I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this.  I  think it's just about the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.  So Narnian.  So magical.  So perfectly perfect perfect.
I'm also pretty sure that I'm not going to be able to reproduce it any time soon.  I'm kind of in a frenzy of purging and cleaning and there's no way I have time for this (much less go out and find a piece of furniture, which also means selling a piece of furniture), but I'm working on a little sumpin to tide me over.

I have this old, cheapo dresser that my cousin gave me and I had actually just offered it to a friend of mine because I was moving it out with the cleaning.  Well, when I started hauling it out of Finnigan's room he went ballistic!!! Who knew?!?!  I would never sell or give away  anything of his without his permission, so I was completely taken aback by this hullabaloo.  Fortunately, I had promised it to a friend and she was quite lovely about the situation (Thanks, Debi xoxox).
Here's the "fabulous" piece she's missing out on...

Yea, ouch, right?

I was able to convince the boy that the dresser needed a makeover if it was going to stay and he agreed.  (whew)
Enter some leftover green paint (is there anything I won't paint green?),

Better already.
Next, there is a  box of old maps has been calling my name, so I dug into that ...

Maps, maps, maps! - only one of the many perks of being married to a geologist.
Maps and Mod Podge go very well together...

Lookie there!  Map covered drawers!
And a word of warning...

Make sure not to put the map upside down.  ARG.

Voila!  A little preview of map dresser love for ya!
Now to obsess over pulls and what to put on the top, if anything.  I'm thinking maybe enlarged pages from The Voyage of the Dawn Treader or Treasure Island or ... hmmmm.  Endless possibilities, ducky!

Now, while you're waiting on pins and needles for the finished product, you know what you need to be doing, right?  Rushing on over to Apartment Therapy to vote for MY HOUSE in the Room for Color Contest.  La, la, la.  I am now in FIRST PLACE in my division, but not by much.  I need a big, fat, cozy margin so roust your friends and family to my rescue!!