Sunday, November 21, 2021

Entwined with the Seasons

What is it about this time of year, that finds me wanting to amp up my texts to friends and family? Perhaps, it has to do with the double holiday season or less daylight? I have no clue, but I am starting to see the "process". 

I start out the darker days, making an effort to communicate more to most folks I know. And then I begin to see my pattern and I pull way way back. Which brings on a case of the sads. Every single time. Blergh. 

And now I've typed it out, to see if it sparks a solution, because I already have the awareness. {sigh} Maybe just the simple task of keeping it in mind, will offer some ... relief (?). Yes, I see you Autumn and Winter. Let's do this ... one way or another.

Love, K

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Another Decade, Another Strata?

Recently, I began thinking about the strata (breakfast casserole), that I usually make (once or twice) around the holiday season. And then a memory of older sis, sharing how well rye bread toast goes with over easy eggs, popped into my head. The flavor wheels in my brain began to spin and then I did a search and found a recipe. {cue trumpeting sound} 

At first glance, the recipe looked like a winner, similar to what I was imagining in my food brain. But when it came time to make a list of needed ingredients, I noticed the first problem--"a loaf of rye bread". And, "what size of loaf are they referring to?", irritated me wondered. There were a few other problematic things, but I soldiered on.

"Breakfast Strata Recipe with Rye Bread and Sausage"
(inspired by Today's Creative Life)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Glass baking dish approximately 10x15--buttered
1 loaf rye bread, cut into cubes, toasted (my loaf was 24 ounces and was more than needed)
1 lb of breakfast sausage (I used 2 Jimmy Dean sausage rolls--one hot and one regular)
3 Tbsp of Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cups whole milk
10 eggs
2 cups of spinach (I cut mine into 1/4-1/2" strips)
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 cups of Swiss cheese, grated

1. Set your oven to 400 degrees
2. Brown sausage with sliced red onion, drain and set aside
3. In medium bowl, whisk eggs, milk, mustard, salt, pepper, spinach, and half the cheese
4. Evenly and loosely, distribute the toasted bread cubes to the baking dish, do not overfill or strata will be too dry.
5. Evenly crumble the cooked sausage and onion over bread cubes
6. Pour egg mixture over the bread, sausage and onion
7. Add other half of shredded cheese over the top
8. Cover with foil and let sit in refrigerator for 2-12 hours
9. Remove from refrigerator, while oven heats to 400 degrees
10. Bake for 50-60 minutes and let rest for 5-10 minutes
11. Cut into desired pieces, serve and enjoy
12. Let me know what I missed--seriously

Love, K

Sunday, November 14, 2021

What to Pair with Rye Bread ...

Who knows how one's own brain works. Not I. I only ponder, because sometimes my brain is powered by my stomach. Usually when I'm searching for a recipe. Makes sense to me. You? 

And, a day or two ago, I began to ponder if there were any recipes for breakfast strata, using rye bread. Way back when, one diner morning, my older sis, suggested I order rye toast with my breakfast,  I didn't hesitate. She's also an aficionado of over easy eggs and their golden gifts. My review? Rye is well suited and paired with egg yolk. Thanks, Sissy.

So ... I've learned, thanks to internet searches, there are strata recipes using rye bread. But now I'm doubting their usage of Swiss cheese as a companion. What type of cheese would you pair with rye bread and eggs. Inquiring minds wish to know. 

Love, K

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Creamy Caramelized Onion Chicken Thighs

Creamy Caramelized Onion Chicken Thighs

I never tire of searching for certain food combinations, when looking for a recipe. It's amusing to me, at how rarely I'll receive the same search results. I guess google knows how to keep things interesting? Or it's a sign of how many folks are out there posting recipes. Yeah, probably that.

The recipe above, is one of those results that was new to me. Onions, mushrooms and chicken, will often make this belly happy. I had a couple of ideas on what to change up in this recipe, but decided to make it as written the first time. I was already planning on the next version, when N suggested that perhaps I make a couple of those changes with the leftovers tonight. See why I keep him around? 

So, tonight we'll be eating this again, but with a dab of dijon mustard and a splash of sherry. Let me know how you'd change it up. Love, K

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Electile Disfunction


Oven Baked Pineapple Chicken Thighs

When my older sis was in high school home economics class, she brought home a couple of soon to be favorite recipes. The ink on my old recipe card has faded in several important places, so I often head out for online recipe reassurance. Monday was one of those days. Lucky me, found a baked version, without breading. I lengthened the baking time, because I like fall off the bone chicken thighs. Enjoy, Love, K

Oven Baked Pineapple Chicken Thighs


8 ounces pineapple (crushed or tidbits) (1 can)

1/2 cup chicken stock

1 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoons sesame oil

1 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 small yellow onion peeled and diced

I red pepper chopped

I smallish carrot diced

4-6 (depending on size) boneless skinless chicken thighs

Salt and pepper to taste

Fresh parsley chopped, for garnish

Green onions thinly sliced, for garnish


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large bowl, stir together the pineapple, chicken stock, soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, cornstarch, and garlic powder until well combined. Set aside.

Season both sides of the chicken thighs with salt and pepper.

Place an ovenproof skillet or dutch oven over medium heat. Then add the oil. Sear the chicken thighs for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until the chicken has a golden brown color. 

Remove chicken thighs. Deglaze pan with vermouth, if needed. 

Add more oil (if needed). Add onion, red pepper, carrot. Cook and stir, until onion is transparent, And return chicken thighs to pan.

Pour the pineapple sauce over the chicken thighs. 

Then bake for 45-35 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is bubbly and thickened.

Remove the skillet/dutch oven from the oven and allow the chicken to sit 5 minutes before serving. The sauce will thicken up as it cools.

Serve warm with rice. Add chopped green onions and parsley on top, if desired.


If you don’t have an ovenproof skillet, transfer the chicken and onions to a baking dish before pouring the sauce on top. Then bake as directed.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Making Butter

I have few memories that include my older sisters still living at home. That age gap, combined with whatever, has removed much of my childhood from the grey cells, but mainly--it's all about that 13 year gap. I often hope the two of them will sit down and put some of their favorite, brightest, moments on paper to share. I'm curious as to what the family constellation was like when they were small and the changes they experienced along the way.

I'm sure I've shared one of those moments (when I was either dust in the wind or too small to remember), when my oldest Sis fell onto the shards of the gallon jar and the loose gravel that caused the fall, as she watched the day's worth of milk, flowing down the road. It's a bit of family lore that usually brings a memory bubbling up: all seven of us, sitting around the living room, watching television and making butter.

Those daily gallon jars of milk, were freshly squeezed, from one of G'ma and G'pa Curly's cows, before being transported by adolescent, down the short hill from their small farm. Mom (?) would scoop off the cream, before adding milk to all those bowls of oatmeal. I don't know if it was the usual routine, but I can remember all seven of us, sitting around the living room, watching television, passing that jar of cream around, agitating it into butter. Golden butter and golden moment. Love, K

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Waiting and Waiting and ...

I don't know about you, but once I put something, anything, out on the web, I can feel the weight. Upon my psyche, my shoulders, my mood. So, when I put up a bag of jigsaw puzzles on "Trash Nothing", to give away, and the first to respond, didn't arrive when they said, I began to feel the weight. The weight of not knowing what to expect or what's coming next or ...?

And then there are the communications, to find out if they want what you're offering or if they've changed their minds or if they need something more from you that they aren't sharing. The guessing, the wondering, the effort of it all, sigh. Did I give enough information? Should I share this? Or that? Especially when there's someone else waiting to find out if they're going to be the beneficiary, instead of the first lucky message.

I feel fortunate, that this time the torture was relatively short. Coulda been worse, I tell myself, because myself knows from prior experience. 

Love, K