Plinky Prompt: Describe an Epic Sandwich

  • Epic Sandwich
  • Yummm, With Great Pleasure…
    Big sandwichTwo thickly sliced (no-pre-sliced bread) Crunchy, peasant bread with sesame seeds
    A layer of mayonnaise Hellmann’s (not Miracle Whip) and Whole Grain mustard.
    Two thick slices of home roasted turkey (not the slimy deli kind)
    One thick slice of Virginia ham (Boar’s Head)
    Two thick slices of Munster Cheese
    One slice of Swiss cheese
    Slices of ripe avocado (don’t you hate it when it’s underripe?)
    Broccoli Sprouts (so you feel really healthy)
    Lettuce and Ripe Summer tomatoes
    Sweet mini-gherkins near or on the sandwich
    Cut the sandwich in half on the diagonal
    Healthy (HA!) Potato Chips on the side
    Diet Root Beer for your beverage
    For Dessert: Two Oreos( double stuffed), dipped in milk, and a piece of dark chocolate

Life Is To Be Lived: Mmmm For Chocolate

English: Chocolate mousse with strawberries pr...

I don’t often order chocolate desserts in restaurants. I’m more the carrot cake or vanilla/coconut cake kind of gal. Tonight, I just needed chocolate, nothing else would suffice. I ordered “Chocolate Mousse with Hazelnuts and Raspberry Coulis.” Oh my dear Lord. It was divine in every sense of the word.

It was milk chocolate mousse wrapped in dark chocolate (I know, right? The best of both worlds) with hazelnuts adorning the  little raspberry syrup spots on top of the white plate. It was not only breathtakingly good to eat, it was also pretty. Or as they say in “Hells Kitchen” the plating was magnificent.

I generally eat very little during the day, I think I had a snack pack of “Fig Newtons” for lunch and water to drink; it was so hot outside I wasn’t hungry. At home, where I proclaimed it was too hot to cook we decided to splurge and go out to eat. There’s something about not cooking that makes one ravenous in a well air-conditioned restaurant surrounded by your non-fighting family.

Tomorrow, I think I will stick to “clean” foods, fruit and vegetables and maybe chicken or a veggie burger. Tonight, however,was meant for only chocolate; rich, smooth, velvety, creamy milk chocolate and dark chocolate. It’s what the end of the week should be, a celebration for getting through it. Enjoy the weekend, everyone.

I Wish I Had Twizzlers Right Now

A pack of Twizzlers

Image via Wikipedia

Random things about me:

I love deleting my SPAM folder. I don’t just like it, I look forward to it. Now its at zero, YES!!

When I eat a piece of dark chocolate I feel virtuous. Let’s face it, milk is my chocolate of choice, it’s sweet, it’s sensual but dark is healthy and I’m aiming to please. Health points, two for me.

Haven’t had red meat in three months. When hubby starts grilling those famous burgers of his outside, I know I won’t be able to resist. I can deal with that: moderation.

I am proud to say that I both Love and Like my son and my daughter and I’m Proud of them both. This is an amazing feeling. It gives my life purpose and meaning. They have turned into wonderful young adults, 17 and 19. Goal: Achieved.

It takes my ten-year old dog more time to jump on and off the bed. I have noticed a difference in the last year and it breaks my heart. You can never be ready but I am starting to prepare myself. Preparation: Grief. I need to do this. I love her THAT much.

Starting to explore the Internet for new recipes  to try. Good for me.

Bought a juicer, used it for a week. Hid it. Pain in the ass to clean. Need to find it (again) and man up. Love the juices, hate the cleaning. I need to get over myself. Fail.

Am reading a trash novel, it’s a nice break from all the morbid and depressing books I always read. It’s not even trashy as it is easy chick lit although rumor has it that the phrase is not politically correct anymore. Sorry, Jennifer Weiner, author.

When I wear the perfume Angel, I feel special and people compliment me on it all the time. I like that.

I dress so poorly, my daughter is a bit ashamed of me, she has a right to be. She’s taking me shopping soon, I’m more than a little afraid.

I have very bad feet. I can only wear one type of sneaker with orthotics. Other people with bad feet understand this. Fashionable girls (like my daughter) do not. That, I cannot change.

Deviled eggs, roast chicken, banana bread, pot roast, pea soup, chicken soup are things I cook/bake extremely well.

I once pooped in my pants when I had a stomach virus and couldn’t make it home on time. Mad sick.

Last night I woke up and my jaw was locked, it was terrifying. I must have been clenching my teeth so hard I could not open my mouth. Grabbed an Alleve and swallowed it, thankfully it helped.

I have a fear of germs and sickness, especially getting the dreadful Eppiglottitis again which just about killed me. Twice. Pain like searing swords in a red, hot throat. Childbirth was easy compared to it. Please don’t come back again. I carry Purell in my purse.

Sometimes I feel scared and anxious of things in advance, I try to talk myself out of it. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I hate when it happens.

I still have stuffed animals and I am proud of it. There is no age limit on stuffed animal friends.

I tell myself that “life is short” so I should “enjoy each day” but then I forget. Working on it.

The TV Executives should never have taken off the show “Brothers and Sisters.” Don’t even think about taking off “Parenthood.”

I should listen to more music.

Plinky Prompt: Which Do You Prefer….White, Milk or Dark Chocolate?

  • Mmmm, Chocolate
  • My Heart Belongs To……….
    Lindt Lindor I started off loving white chocolate as a girl until it reminded me of butter and the thrill of that was gone….it isn’t EVEN chocolate kept sticking in my mind so I don’t like it anymore. Thanks for the memories, though.
    After that it was milk chocolate or NOTHING. I adore milk chocolate, I think it’s sweet and sensual and truly there is nothing better than having a Lindt milk chocolate ball melt in your mouth slowly. It’s a tiny slice of heaven each and every time (and no, I am not paid by Lindt chocolates.) However, since I have been on my healthy living diet, I have cut out a lot of sweets, most sweets actually. Now, my indulgence at night is a square or two of dark chocolate. (I know, I know!!!) I can hardly believe it myself, but it’s true. Things that I had eaten before (not to mention Twinkies and Snowballs, on occasion) I can’t even touch. Milk chocolate is even too sweet.
    So, for the moment I would have to choose dark chocolate but deep inside, I do feel like a traitor. While my body eats dark chocolate now, my heart belongs to milk chocolate, no doubt about it.

Carrot Cake Was NOT Just An 80′s Thing, Was It?

Carrot Cake

Image by Pen Waggener via Flickr

Hubby and I went out to dinner last week and as we looked over the dessert menu (after all, isn’t that the reason I go out to dinner?) I realized that certain important items were missing from the menu. There was no carrot cake, cheesecake. vanilla cake. Or any cake except a dense, all dark-chocolate cake. No pies. Just passion fruit crème brûlée,  a brownie with vanilla ice cream, a root beer float (really? that is a beverage to me) and fresh fruit in season, (LOL) and Nutella in pastry shells. I have a big jar of Nutella at home in the closet and with a teaspoon (or 5 teaspoons) to eat right out of the jar it costs a lot less than the eight dollars THEY were charging. I had just baked brownies for my kids and husband so that was out of the question, vanilla ice cream was safely nestled in the freezer. I had been dreaming of carrot cake, cheese cake, vanilla layer cake, coconut cake but there was nothing.

Carrot cake, to me, is perfection. It is a blend of sweet, salty, crunch and creamy. I’m not a huge fan of cream cheese frosting but hey, its frosting and it is vanilla-ish so that works for me. My husband in his loud, convincing voice said: “carrot cake was just an 80′s s thing.”  Excuse me? I don’t think so but he kept telling me that we don’t see it on dessert menus very often and I just assume that we’ve been going to the wrong restaurants.

Was carrot cake a cult thing? Like a flash in the (cake) pan? Do I need to find my leg warmers and leotards and watch “Flashdance” on the, (gulp) oldies station? Look at denim, that’s been around a long time and I doubt that’s going anywhere. I don’t want to think that carrot cake is not available anymore and please don’t suggest I make it because I don’t have the patience or the talent for all the chopping, mixing and whatever 52 steps it takes to create it.  Also, it’s no use saying “don’t order dessert” because that is totally irrational.

If I can’t find it in a restaurant I really don’t want to buy a whole cake. I don’t want a whole cake of any flavor in my house, from a bakery or Costco or the frozen section of my local supermarket. If there is (non-chocolate) cake, I will eat it.   Please, don’t let me buy an entire carrot cake or cheesecake because I am the only one in the family that will eat it and I have given up on portion control or rather portion control has given up on me.  I will have to scour every bakery and grocery store to find a place that serves these delicacies by the slice. I’m just not sure if I can be trusted to only buying one.

*SWEET! ( A Foodie Blog )

Nutella, mon amour!

Image by JoX1989 via Flickr

I watch shows like “Unwrapped” on the Food Network Channel and it does me no good. I get too hungry while I am watching it so I slip downstairs for a snack or I’m afraid… seven. I can’t possibly match what I am eating to what I am watching so I stick to what we have in the house; it is not a pretty picutre. Tonight, I had two mini packs of cereal with milk; first, Apple Jacks and then Fruit Loops. Two sweet snacks with healthy one percent milk but after that the problems continue….now I need salt.

I located one of my new favorite items “Snyder’s Pumpernickel Onion Pretzel Sticks. Close your eyes and munch away and you will swear that you are eating a piece or two of pumpernickel toast. I know, right? It seems too good to be true but it really does work.  Another new product I have found are the 6-pack of Raisinettes.  You know when you go to the movies and they try to sell you practically a quart size of Raisinettes for twenty dollars? (ok,so I am exaggerating a little.) You feel like a complete slob if you eat the entire package but it’s just plain wrong to think we could stop half way. Impossible. Now this 6 pack gives you a smaller size so when you eat the entire package, you really didn’t ! Best part about it? You have five packages left!

On “The Best Thing I Ever Ate- Sweet Tooth” they were featuring crepes.  Sure, I will try anything that calls itself “Pure Ecstasy” (and I mean that only in a chocolate way) but frankly since I am not a chef I would just go for the main ingredient which is Nutella. Nutella is an amazing creamy combination of chocolate and hazelnuts; it looks a little like milk chocolate pudding in a jar.  I don’t need to make a crêpe for this delicious combination, all I need is a spoon, preferably a big one. Nutella is a staple in our house sans crêpe.

The next thing I saw featured was the Sant Ambroeus’ cake, named for the Sant Ambroeus, café.  It’s actually two (chocolate) desserts, chocolate mousse AND a pocket of chocolate custard,  in chocolate.  This would pretty much ensure a bonding experience with my daughter who is a complete chocolate addict. My goal is to take her there one day.

Next stop is to Tartine in San Francisco, a double pain au chocolate which is like a croissant, shaped differently with a lot of chocolate in it. In addition the other ingredient is lots of butter. Let’s see we have bread dough, butter and an amazing amount of delicious chocolate. What’s not to like? This is just not anybody’s chocolate either, (Hershey’s chocolate is still always fine with me) it’s special and I have to admit I would love to try it.

Next up, chocolate, peanut butter popcorn. I couldn’t kid you about this if I tried and why would I make it up?  I’m really not sure I like the sound of it. Convince me. A perfect blend of salty and sweet, maybe you have something there. Wait, what? Add popcorn and peanuts, chipolte chocolate sauce? “Sweet heat?”  Served with butter popcorn ice cream over home-made Cracker Jacks?  I think I will pass but of course that is just my opinion.  Another feature was like a home-made pop tart.  Seriously? A pastry shell and an interior of fresh fruit. Sorry, but to me this looks like more of a cereal bar and too healthy too. Of course I would try it if it was in front of me but I don’t think I would seek it out. If all else fails, and there is no deluxe chocolate combination to eat I will stick quite happily to my Nutella and to my Raisinettes. Now if they only came in dark chocolate 6-packs for my sister’s birthday…..

*I am not responsible for any incorrect detail due to intensified drooling.

Thank You, Erica

Candlelit Table for One

Image by ecstaticist via FlickrI

I am not a paid restaurant reviewer so I am writing about my love of eating good food (not making it.)  I also have great admiration for those who cook incredibly well. Our friends, Mike and Erica, hosted a reunion a few weeks ago and old friends from the East Coast and the West Coast gathered together.  Erica made a divine appetizer of stuffed mushrooms based on Ina Garten’s recipe. It was one of the best things I have ever eaten and this is NOT the Food or Cooking Channel. We ate those amazing stuffed mushrooms with our eager fingers and never have I eaten such different tastes and textures in one appetizer. The sausage, olive oil, cheese, bread crumbs and mushroom appetizer combined with seeing old friends, talking, hugging and laughing, was a highlight of 2010 for me.

It felt like the kitchen scene from the movie, The Big Chill,  except no one died (although one person did leave the dinner table, head to the living room, wrapped himself up in a blanket, appropriated two pillows and apparently fell asleep on the couch for 3 hours.) I couldn’t make this up if I tried.

Presently I fantasize about eating my favorite things in an expensive restaurant.  My husband and I would be seated inside a small dining room near a beautiful fireplace. A small bouquet of red and purple flowers sit prettily on the thickly starched white tablecloth where a soft candle would be burning.

To start, I would have jumbo prawns with cocktail sauce and a wedge of lemon (that had a paper coverlet on it to protect it from seeds.) In some circles the prawns would be the delicacy but in our family we have named the shrimp as the vehicle to which we get to eat the cocktail sauce. Another example of this would be that lobster is the vehicle to get to the melted butter sauce. You get the idea.

After that I would order a salad made with a lemon/olive oil, vinagrette salad dressing (the words truffle and champagne could be added although I don’t know exactly what they do.) Ripe cherry tomatoes, julienned carrots, red cabbage, and chopped parsley and chives would be on top. I love adding sweetness to things so for me, some craisins would be tossed in there as well.

The table is laden with “everything” flat crackers and warm, soft, dinner rolls with butter, room temperature (I hate hard, freezing cold butter)  shaped like sea shells. My entrée would either be the outstanding chateaubriand, like it is prepared at the  restaurant X2O or the divine filet mignon served at the Crabtree Kittle House, both amazing restaurants are located in New York. Rice pilaf or mashed potatoes would work nicely with this meal, but nothing fried and undignified as french fries and ketchup (those go with cheeseburgers only.)  Grilled brussel sprouts paired with a hint of maple syrup glaze and slivered almonds would be our vegetable.

Blood orange or lemon sorbet served in martini glass would be our palate cleanser. It would be served to help settle our wonderful meal and to leave room (not that this has ever been a problem for me) for dessert.  I am a sugar junkie and I like a variety of things so because it is my fantasy I am picking two desserts: a fresh fruit tart served in a marzipan shortbread crust with vanilla custard and a fluffy (never flourless) milk and dark chocolate mousse cake with real vanilla bean ice cream.

Thanks for joining me in my food fantasy. Here’s to 2011, with good friends and great food.  Wishing all of you a Happy, Healthy and delicious New Year.

I’d Be Lost Without You

2008-10-22 - 010 - Kona, Hawaii, snorkeling, f...

Image by cfinke via Flickr

Every morning I am greeted with a smile, a hug and a freshly brewed cup of coffee. He even sniffs the milk before he pours, knowing I have a super-sensitive nose and will gag if I even think something has gone sour. Today there was a small fruit cup with blueberries, strawberries and cantaloupe, sliced with love from a steady, beautiful hand. My hands shake so he carries the full cup of coffee to me, so I don’t feel bad and so there will be no spills on our fake linoleum Spanish tiles in the kitchen. In the middle of the night our feet or hands search for each other for reassurance and comfort. I don’t even mind when he snores loudly, though I do punch him lightly in the arm. Without protest he turns over. I used to say “turn over” but with our marriage code I have shortened the phrase to “apple” as in apple turnover and he knows exactly what I mean.

We have our own language, he and I, built on twenty-five years of togetherness, love and friendship. We are each others’ best friend.  I am not saying we have always had the perfect marriage because no marriage is perfect. We have had our rough years, our tough times but we struggle through it together, knowing that home is not just a place but a feeling. I sat through a Gordon Lightfoot concert for him, he came to see Neil Diamond for me. Sometimes he blurt things out that are supposed to be secret; sometimes I reveal my feelings when I shouldn’t. Sam Adams for him, Diet Coke for me. His Scotch is my Yoo-hoo, his dark chocolate is my milk chocolate.

I want our children to see that our marriage is strong, loving, yet not without flaws. I want them to know that marriage, like any relationship, needs work, a strong commitment and loving companionship. We help each other when difficult situations arise, and in life, they always do. When we were first married, we went through the infertility process together; it breaks many couples apart yet it brought us closer together. We share pain and joy, I am more emotional, he is more practical. We balance each other like a delicate balancing toy, sometimes tipping over, always able to right itself to startling precision.We try to laugh even during hard times. He has taught me to be less pessimistic; I have taught him that it is okay to be vulnerable.

Through the 25 years of our relationship we have grown closer together even after we have grown apart. He likes skiing, I like sunshine, he plays racquetball, I need to write. For a little while we thought it was odd that we did not share activities in common but we adjusted and compromised. We trust each other so that if he wants to go skiing, he goes with a friend. If I need sunshine in the middle of a gray, cold winter, I have flown to Florida for a few days. We can be independent of each other yet always happy to reconnect. We share the joy of traveling together, France, Australia, Amsterdam,  Aruba, Rhode Island. We held hands when we snorkeling on our engagement trip in Hawaii, my most favorite memory. While he would prefer to stomp through old ruins, I would rather walk on the beach finding seashells; we compromise.

He is an atheist, I believe in G-d. We have two amazing children, a boy, 18 and a girl, 16. We share their triumphs and their pain; we help each other deal with our ever-changing reality. If the children attack us, as teenagers often do, we immediately look at each other. The silent language of marriage is a subtle one, but we speak it fluently.

I fear the day that one of us is left alone. I pray it won’t be for a very long time yet thinking about it frightens me. He is the one person that I trust with my life, that I can count on without question. He feels the same way about me. We know the best and the worst of each other and accept and acknowledge both. If I had to, I know deep down, that I could survive without him; I just don’t want to.