Friday, June 05, 2009


Hello my Company Girls and Readers!
I can't believe it's Friday again. I swear the weeks go faster and faster!

We have nothing on the horizon for the weekend - I will no doubt be strapped to the computer designing some marketing pieces for my biz. I need to jump start things before the summer heat really takes hold - it is hard to book sessions when it is 100 degrees by 9am! lol!

I can hear my 4 year old getting into some mischief in the hall bathroom, but I am choosing to ignore it. It has been a long day already...

Anyway, yesterday I mentioned some of my recent cooking triumphs so I thought I would share them in more detail today. I absolutely love cooking (most of the time) and it is really fun for me to try new things. And I am by no means an expert or anything, I just love food and feeding my family! (my extended family can attest to that - all the stuff I make on the holidays is ridiculous!) Anyway, Hubby has requested lasagna some time last week, so on my last grocery trip I picked up a little tub of ricotta cheese hoping I would get around to making some before it went bad. I have been dying to try Pioneer Woman's version of Lasagna, but seem to never have all the ingredients on hand. When I decided to make the lasagna, this time was no different, but I loosely followed her recipe anyway.

{oh and by the way, just in case you might be wondering, I don't typically count calories when cooking... lol!}

Following her recipe, I used a pound of ground beef (less than what she called for) and a roll of Owens breakfast sausage. I browned it in a skillet and added some garlic after it was brown. I drained the fat, and because I didn't have any canned tomato paste, I used a small can of diced tomatoes and a jar of spaghetti sauce. For the cheese mixture, I didn't have quite enough ricotta (she used cottage cheese, but I like ricotta better), so I used a little less parmesan than she called for and I only had a little dried parsley so I made up the difference with dried basil. Then, when doing all the layering, I followed her order (noodles, ricotta mixture, sliced cheese, meat mixture) but on top of the sliced cheese layer I sprinkled in some shredded asiago cheese that I happened to have in the fridge. I didn't have a lot of mozzarella, and I was worried about not having enough cheese - but the added asiago was incredible! When it was all together it didn't look "wet" enough so I poured another jar of spaghetti sauce over the top and put a little water in the corners for the noodles (they were uncooked). I topped it with more parmesan cheese and put it in the oven for about 45 minutes to cook the noodles. The flavor was so amazing - when I first saw her recipe I scoffed at the sausage, but it really adds a new flavor dimension to plain ol' lasagna. And I think the basil/parsley mix was a good call too. Hubby raved about it!

So a couple of nights ago I wanted to cook some salmon. I try to make it once every couple of weeks anyway, and I always cook it the same. I usually put a parmesan crust on it and serve it with rice and sauteed zucchini. However, this time, I was almost out of parmesan because of the lasagna, so I didn't have enough for the crust, and we have been eating zucchini pretty much non stop since the garden started producing so I was ready for something different. I decided to look at salmon recipes on the net and came across a couple that looked interesting, but I didn't have the ingredients for any one recipe. Of course a couple of blah, blah, blah cream sauce recipes stuck in my head so I thought about how I could do something like that. I am a sucker for cream sauce! Anyway, I was thinking about the garden and what I had growing and what I could use. I am discovering that with the herbs I am growing, if I use them, they grow better. If I don't they grow all weird and scraggly. I had harvested a good bit of green beans already so I started researching how to cook fresh green beans (I am a canned green bean kinda girl). The recurring theme seemed to involve butter, lemon and garlic. Suddenly it came to me!

I took the salmon fillet and sprinkled it with a little garlic salt and lemon pepper, put it in a skillet with a little butter and coconut oil (the expeller pressed - it doesn't have any flavor, but the regular kind probably would have been yummy too; or you can use olive oil or nothing at all), then squeezed some fresh lemon over it while it was cooking. Just before flipping it, I chopped some fresh dill from the garden and sprinkled it over the fish. While that was cooking I boiled a pot of water and blanched the green beans for about 4 minutes. When they were done I scooped them out into a skillet with a little butter and sauteed them with some kosher salt, garlic powder (I was out of fresh), lemon and a little bacon for flavor. I tossed some pasta in the blanch water. Then I took the cooked fish out of the skillet and put some diced onion in. I let that cook for a couple of minutes then deglazed the pan with a little white wine. Once that had reduced (took maybe a few minutes), I poured in about a cup of half and half, a little chicken stock (maybe 1/2-1 cup) and added about 3-4 ounces of cream cheese. I tossed in a good bit of chopped fresh dill and the rest of the parmesan cheese I had (probably about a tablespoon). Then I added salt and lots of fresh ground black pepper. Let that cook for a few minutes while the pasta was finishing up and then put the fish back in the sauce. I served the fish and cream sauce over the pasta and the green beans on the side.

OMGoodness the sauce was so yummy!! All the flavors went well together and the lemon and dill tied it all in with the green beans. Hubby said they were the best green beans he'd had, and I really liked them too.

mmmm, I am getting hungry just thinking about it!

Anyway, as you can tell I was proud of myself for making it all up as I went along, timing it just right and it turning into something really yummy. I'm not usually that on top of things these days! Mommy brain rules around here. ;-)

A couple of weird things from yesterday and today...

Yesterday morning a solicitor came to the door at 830am. I barely had a cup of coffee in me and was still in jammies so there was no way I was answering the door. Plus, we keep a sign over our doorbell that says "please do not knock or ring the bell, baby is sleeping" and he knocked and sent our dog into a very loud tizzy. I was a bit annoyed at his inability to follow a simple request. He knocked again after a few minutes of the dog barking, sending her into round two of fantastic ferocious beastly mania, so I rounded up the boys and left the room. A little while later I had to go outside to measure something and noticed - he had taken some sidewalk chalk from the driveway and wrote in big letters "THE BOOKMAN WAS HERE".


alrighty then.

Today I took the boys to Costco (after an errand to Kohl's and a stop at Krispy Kreme for national donut day - what was I thinking?!?!?) and as we were walking past the clothing section I noticed a woman browsing one of the tables. Both her arms were COMPLETELY covered from shoulder to wrist with large silver bracelets. They were all different styles; some with jewels, some with dangling bits and some with intricate designs. She must have had 100 on each arm. It was totally bizarre.

So I just happened to have my old rusty snap shot camera in the diaper bag and caught these at Krispy Kreme today...
yes Chocolate Milk and a Chocolate donut. I am such a good mom.

And also in great parenting moves, Port got his own donut. He really enjoyed it.

really, really enjoyed it...
seriously, I couldn't get it away from him.
after that shot he started kicking his feet and squealing.... "a gah, a gah!, a GAH!!" I don't know what that means, but Kiddo was not amused.
He finished his chocolate milk anyway.

D :)

PS> If you are a fan of podcasts - Musing Mommies episode 11 is up and running! This week we discussed home organization and home party businesses! Next week, music for kids - what they listen to, what they should and shouldn't listen to and what makes us nuts! Got any ideas or opinions on that?? Please leave us a comment here or on our site, Musing Mommies! Thanks!

Oh yes, and don't forget to head over to Company Girl and submit your pictures!! The deadline has been extended and the guidelines changed! Now, you can retain your copyright on any image you submit that gets picked for the book! YAY!!!


TitanKT said...

You didn't take pictures of the food you cooked?!?! OMG, Dawn, I'm gonna cry!

Dawn said...

I know Katy!! I was too eager to eat it! lol! Sorry. :)

Victoria said...

I was hoping for bracelet photos ... I'm so bummed I missed donut day. I loves me some Krispy Kreme!!

Small Town Mamma said...

Mmm, the food sounds lovely. As for Krispy Kreme, our nearest store is .... 2000kms away. When I lived in London, I used to go about 9 stops on the tube just to get them!

Thanks for stopping by my blog - glad to meet you!

secondofwett said...

Okay so,...I really don't like cooking...but w/ so many kids and a few come home on Sundays w/the grandkids I'm kind of forced into it.....the food you described sounded soooo don't make house calls do you....I routinely have between 12-15 every Sunday for supper and your skills would be very appreciated! :0)

Joyce said...

donuts! i haven't had any in a long time. we missed out. hopefully you'll have a more relaxed weekend.

TitanKT said...

Never be too eager to eat, keep the camera handy... c'mon! You know how I love food!

Speaking of, I got an herb pot for Mother's Day from my parents and the basil grew so crazy, I recently harvested it and made pesto which I used on a pizza also topped with a fresh tomato from my mom's garden. The whole thing is detailed (WITH PICTURES) on my blog. Stop by. Hehehe!

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