Sunday, September 19, 2010

Happy Birthday Natalie!

Natalie was turning the big 2-5, so we needed to do something special.  I made a confetti cake for Natalie, no box needed!  The best part is, I was able to make the cake just as fast from scratch as I usually do from the box.  And I was so much prouder!  To top it off, Rudy tinted the frosting a nice and sunny yellow.  That would be Natalie's favorite color.

The hard part of making the cake was transporting the cake to San Pedro's fish market.  We went down to San Pedro for dinner, and we wanted to bring the cake.  I had to put the cake in the freezer so it would survive the almost hour long drive and the 20 minute walk to where we were meeting everyone.  It worked out really well!  The only thing the time in the freezer didn't protect the cake from was me dropping my phone onto it on the car ride over.  Oops.

All and all, it was a great night!  A little fish, beer, and cake in Pedro, then off the Anaheim for some ice-skating.  Really, we all had a blast!  We need to have another birthday bash soon! 

Happy Birthday Natalie!

Did I mention it was homemade confetti cake???

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Pork Chops alla Pizzaiola

I can safely say that I am a very spoiled person.  Rudy decided that he would cook for us the other night, and it was nothing short of amazing!  I don't know what made Rudy decide to cook this fabuloso dinner, but I'm sure glad he did!

I was having one of those days.  It wasn't bad, but it was definitely not all good.  I was tired, my body was sore, and I was starving.  The phone call home made my day much brighter.  Rudy informed me that he wanted to make a dinner with pork chops since we had just bought 10 nice and juicy pork chops from Costco the day before.  I was already surprised and excited. 

Then, he really threw me for a loop.  He told me the recipe he really wanted to make was one he had found at Food Network's website, and the chef who created it was Giada de Laurentiis.  He really dislikes her shows.  I really mean it.  Whenever I am watching one of them, he just rolls his eyes the whole time.  But, he really likes her recipes, so sometimes he will suck it up.  And I am really glad he did! 

The porkchops were beyond delicious!  The tomatoes and onions were heavenly; the potatoes were crispy on the outside and soft on the inside; the greenbeans were crisp with a hint of garlic.  I normally talk and talk and talk, even when eating dinner, but that night, I was quiet as a church mouse.  I was just wanted to savor every bite, willing the flavors to stay longer.  But alas, the meal was eventually over.  And this time, there were no leftovers because I just couldn't stop eating these delicious porkchops.  But don't cry for me just yet.  I have been promised another porkchop meal on Monday!  So even though it is the start of the workweek, as well as the start of the new school year, I will be sailing through the day just by thinking about the night's dinner!  Rudy, you can cook for me any day!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Mommy Biscuits

Apparently these cookies make mommies very happy, but make 1-year-olds very grumpy.  This is because 1-years-olds cannot enjoy these buttery, soft cookies, while mommies can eat them all!  That's why these Korova Cookies are nicknamed Mommy Biscuits! 

Silly baby, these are for Mommy!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Caesar of All Chicken Salads

I remember going to this really nice Italian restaurant when I went with my family in Cancun.  I know, I know, sounds odd.  Italian food while in Mexico.  But believe me!  It was some of the best Italian food I've ever had!  Too bad the restaurant is all the way in Mexico... Now I am really craving their Caesar Salad!

What's really special about this salad is that they make it table side, specially for you.  I mean, they make the traditional Caesar Salad dressing, complete with the special bowl they rub garlic all over to the egg yolk as the base for the dressing, right next to you at the table!  I even got to see the cute little anchovies as they got mashed into oblivion.  It was seriously the most delicious salad I have ever had.  And when I saw just how easy the dressing was to make, I knew I had to try it sometime at home.

Freshly tossed, but at the kitchen counter, not the table.

Now fast-forward about 3 years, and you will see me finally trying my hand at making my own Chicken Caesar Salad.  Finally!  Thanks to a one, Jamie Oliver, I now have a super yummy Caesar Salad recipe.  It's not traditional, so you don't need a special "Caesar Bowl" that you rub garlic all over.  But you do need a way to make a very nummy past of anchovies, garlic, and lemon zest.  Yes, you read right.  You will have to handle anchovies in all their oily, salty glory!

I got to make ciabatta, then turn around and make it into crispy croutons!

Did I mention that this recipe also breaks the traditional mode by adding bacon?  Well, it has bacon.  And lots of it!  All in all, I highly recommend this recipe, even if it does mean busting open a whole can of anchovies.  Really.  You can do it!

Anchovies, garlic, and lemon. Oh my!

You can find a similar recipe here, but mine was really quick and easy because I got it off the Jamie Oliver 20 Minute Meals App for my iPhone.  If you have access to this app, I highly recommend it!  Sooooo much good stuff!