Best-Ever Brined Pork Chops with Spiced Apples and Raisins

This past weekend, the honey and I hightailed it to Seattle for a movie night and super-dinner get-together over my brother Niko’s house.

Replete with the best of friends — Sarah and Jon — we celebrated over salmon, mashed potatoes, caprese salad and wine and finished it all off with the best chocolate cupcakes ever (you rock, Sarah)!

I don’t have a picture of them ’cause they’re in my tummy.

We shaked our bon-bon, had a dance off, repeatedly tried not to accidentally step on the cat, and sang a very loud, out-of-tune rendition of “Happy Birthday to You” to Jon.  Baring the early birthday tune, pretty much “the usual” for us. Continue reading

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Watermelon Mint Martini with Lime

There are days when nothing seems to work out right.

It all started with biscuits that turned into scones, but not before they looked like cow pies.

Tasty ones, I’ll give ’em that, but they did not look right.  And they photographed even worse.

Being a blogger of all things food can have it’s challenges.

There are days when:

  1. you can’t for the life of you decide what recipe to make, despite the fact you’ve stockpiled hundreds of them,
  2. you don’t have the faintest clue what on earth to write about,
  3. you’re racing against time, ’cause your natural light is fading,
  4. and you can’t seem to get a single photo or composition to look right, no matter how hard you shoot, edit, or crop. Continue reading

Brazilian Shrimp Stew with Coconut Milk

With Fall just around the corner, Summer becomes much more important.

We in the Pacific Northwest wait for it like some wait for Christmas.

We hold our breath, afraid that if we blink a few too many times — due to the what-the-what-is-that?! blinding orb in the sky — we might miss it.

It arrives crazy-fashionably late, like a flaxen-haired princess on the back of a chariot.  All too soon, her ride turns the corner and we find ourselves holding a half-eaten corn dog and nothing but a faint, Vitamin-D memory of her. Continue reading

Best-Ever Pecan Waffles with Bacon

I must admit, Tuesdays are not my favorite thing.

It’s the day of the week when the Lawn People come to tend to my apartment complex’s green stuff.

They descend upon it like a swarm of weed-whacking locusts and hang out from 8:00am – 3:00pm to drive me nuts, and make me want to go jiu jitsu on the next nearest living thing.

They add to the already omnipresent noise of yowling little toddler residents, and the frenzied “Go potty, come on, go potty, go potty…don’t eat that!” of dog-crazy people waiting for their dogs to poop just below my kitchen window.

I know that the Lawn People are here to at least make things pretty for me, but it all just makes me want to go ballistic. Continue reading

Cuban Roast Pork

There’s this amazing place called Paseo.

If any of you have ever been to Seattle, you may have heard it talked about in not-so-subtle-ways when asking locals if they knew of any good, cheap-eats sandwich places ’round here.

Now, those in-the-know will mention Paseo.  And inevitably, the reactions to the mention of Paseo will most certainly go something like this:

“Oh, my god, their Cuban Roast sandwich is amazing!”

or

“Holy, f___ s___, isn’t their roasted pork sandwich f___ amazing?!”

And, yes, I know I am repeating myself, but people tend to do that when talking about Paseo’s Cuban Roast sandwich.  I have seen otherwise mellower-than-snail-persons practically lose their bleepin’ minds talking about this sandwich.  It’s that freakin’ good. Continue reading

Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie (or Mom and Dad Pie)

Today is my parent’s 43rd wedding anniversary.

They are the most wonderful peas-in-a-pod, and yes, I know, I’m biased.

Forty-three years ago today they were getting married.  Mom, walking down the aisle to meet my dad, in a gown she made all by herself.  My dad calling her his “Julietta”.  And just like it is in Rhode Island this time of year, it was hot.  It was sweaty.  It was perfect.

They’ve had forty-three years of memories made together, my mom and dad.  Forty-three years filled with making wonderful memories for my brother, Niko, and I.  Forty-three years of good times and bad, and yet just as much — if not more — silliness, laughter, and love. Continue reading

Wild Blueberry Crumble With Oat-Almond Topping

I have never been much of a dessert fan.  I am by default a salt kind of girl, and would much rather prefer most anything salt to anything sweet any day.  But I do have a soft spot in my stomach for blueberries — specifically, frozen blueberries of the wild kind.

How much of a soft spot?  Well, for starters, I eat them every morning with my cereal after defrosting them under warm running water in my kitchen sink.  Every morning.  Every time my brother sees me, he yells, “Blueberries!” (basically, a verbatim imitation of yours truly from when we used to live together).

No joke, these bitty berries make me that happy. Continue reading