Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Leaves gone, winter's come

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Three Ways to Approach Thanksgiving

When you are taking a break from your Thanksgiving preparations you might enjoy reading these different approaches to getting ready for Thursday.  

This one, How to Cook Thanksgiving Dinner by Leslie Harpold, is my all time favorite.  Leslie Harpold was an early blogger and this column is from 2003.  I was sad to find out that she died a few years ago at age 40 and her blogs have been allowed to expire at the request of her familiy.

For the young, hip Thanksgiving attendees who are subjected to a family event, this one from the Village Voice by Jen Moll gives some tips -Your Modern-Day Thanksgiving Guide to Getting Through the Holiday With Only Slightly Less Dignity Than You Started With.

And for those of you practical types trying to ready the house and the meal for your families  here is a guide from the blog "Like Mother, Like  Daughter"   -  Ask Auntie Leila:  No really, how do you prepare for Thanksgiving?"

Now I must go vacuum and make my final grocery list.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

What a difference a week makes

Leaves are almost gone.  Soon I'll just have grey branches.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Who would think that a fish place in Chicago would have the best recipe for Cuban Bread Pudding?  Found this recipe for Cuban Bread Pudding searching the internet and tried it yesterday.  It was amazing.  I used a loaf of stale cuban bread and grated it until it was basically dust.  Breaking it into small pieces won't give you the proper texture so this is an important change to the recipe.  And I didn't bother removing the crust since it all the bread was turned into dust anyway. 

Dirk's Fish Cuban Bread Pudding

Friday, November 11, 2011

Please read this

Whether you are Republican or Democrat, pro-life or pro-choice, Christian or not, rich, poor, or someplace in between, I think that his words on being a "value voter" and what that should mean should resonate with you. 

From today's Washington Post:
 "The Values Debate We're Not Having"  by The Rev. Richard Cizik, president of the New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good. He was vice president for governmental affairs of the National Association of Evangelicals from 1998 to 2008.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

T-giving party plans

I'm sorry to bore you with my lists but it really helps me stay organized to keep the list where I can always find it so here's another one -

Guest list - 15 people and counting, including 3 children.    We are now at 17 people.  We should be able to fit at the expanded dining room table, or should I give the children a children's table????  Maybe a small table next to the big table?  BIG TABLE IT IS!  Since Charlie made me an expanded table last year I can squeeze more people.

T-giving Party

updated Monday, Nov 21
updated Wednesday, Nov 23

Before dinner eats - K and G will provide antipasto platter, I'll have some cheese/crackers, etc.

Dinner -
  • Roast pork -Found a giant fresh ham at BJ's.  It will take about 7 1/2 hours to cook. Got to get up early!
  • Black Beans - C to make when he has some time, then freeze - DONE
  • Yuca and Mojo - boil and make sauce and freeze in the sauce - DONE
  • Rice
  • Plantains - purchased yesterday. 
  • Salad stuff - no one ever eats this. Why do I make it?  Oh, well, maybe our American guests will find it the only thing they recognize. FORGET ABOUT IT
  • Bread/Butter - do I need to order more Cuban bread from Tampa?  Check freezer - Have plenty of bread.
  • Make some Mac and Cheese for the kids.  This does break my rule on children should eat (or not eat) what is being served and that no special meals will be prepared.  I guess since these aren't my kids, and all this food is foreign to them I should make an exception this time.

 Dessert -
  • Guava pastries - in freezer - Actually she wants these for the ceremony so I have dozens in freezer.
  • Cheesecake Flan - make on Wednesday  DONE
  • Bread pudding - good luck with this.  Found recipe to try this week and it says you can freeze it.  Make on Monday and freeze. DONE
  • Pumpkin Flan - make on Wednesday DONE and it smells SOOOOO good!
  • And I'll have Charlie buy a pumpkin pie from the cafeteria at work! - Don't bother.  Buy one at Christmas.

Drinks - KandG said they would bring wine.  I'll have sparkling non-alcoholic juices and sodas.

Table is set.  Need to get out all serving dishes.  And get the giant plastic blow-up palm tree out of the dining room!  STILL WORKING ON THE PALM TREE.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

My daughter is adorable

The day after Thanksgiving she is having a commitment ceremony with her lovely girlfriend.  Since the state in which they live doesn't allow same-sex marriage I never really know how to refer to this wonderful event, but she is doing her very best to make certain that all the families feel welcome and comfortable and she wants to share her heritage.  Consequently, since what would be the traditional rehearsal dinner falls on Thanksgiving, we are having her partner's family join us for dinner.  But, at K's insistence, we will not have traditional Thanksgiving food but we will have Cuban food.  We tried to explain to her that Cubans in the U.S. eat turkey for Thanksgiving, so this was not exactly a Cuban tradition, but to her it is all about the food, not the holiday.

So, Cuban food it is, and it's an easier meal to prepare than turkey and all the trimmings.  But I'm beginning to think that it is really all about the dessert.  I brought back the required guava pastries from Miami this past weekend, and I'd already planned to make a cheesecake flan, but today she's put in an order for 'pudin de pan' - bread pudding Cuban style.  I do not make bread pudding.  I buy bread pudding from the Publix grocery store in Florida.  I have no idea how to make it.  So I'm now scouring the internet for just the "right" recipe (Would Publix share their recipe do you think?  It is the best bread pudding in the world next to Latin Cafe 2000 in Miami).

But I'm so happy she has found someone to love, and has someone who loves her back just as fully.  They are adorable together and complete each other perfectly.  And they will have 'pudin de pan'.