April 30, 2014

My Life

The things we do out of love;

Like, blowdrying my son's favorite stuffy after he brought him for a swim in the tub...

I was told that the dryer was too dangerous...

You will all be glad to know that 'Frizzle' is safe, sound and dry, as per Elias' request.

April 28, 2014

Beet This!

My love for beets has been a development.

I ate one years ago and I thought it tasted like dirt, so I stayed away from them for a very long time...
actually, it wasn't until I grew them in our garden myself that my perspective shifted...

Call me narcissistic. 
But, enough about me...

I found this recipe in a magazine (I think it was Country Living?! Help if you know!?),
however, I adapted it to my liking. 
I love the balance of lemon juice with the earthiness of the beets, so I amped up the acid, added a little spice, and changed the recommended goat cheese to blue...
because I hate goat cheese...
but that is your call...

And I know it is obnoxious when bloggers say things like "this is so easy...blah blah blah"....
...but this is actually so easy.

And so delicious.

Makes 6 tartlets

3 red beets and 3 golden beets; roasted, peeled and sliced (toss them in oil and bake them in the oven at 375 for about 30 minutes or until you can poke them easily with a fork...let them cool...peel, slice)

Six squares of frozen puff pastry shell
The zest from one lemon
The juice from 1/2 a lemon
crushed red pepper
Blue cheese, crumbled (or goat cheese, crumbled)
Olive oil

1. Roast, peel and slice your beets. 
2. Toss the beets in the lemon juice, s/p and a pinch of crushed red pepper.
3. Remove the pastry from the freezer and cut into squares
4. Top the pastry squares with the beets. 
5. Sprinkle the cheese and the lemon zest over the tarts 
6. Bake at 375 until the puff pastry is golden brown, about 25 minutes.
7. Assemble the tarts on a platter and drizzle with olive oil and more lemon juice


I cannot wait to experiment more with this recipe!
I am thinking balsamic reduction...piave cheese instead of blue...
Roasted red peppers or poblanos with the beets perhaps?!
The addition of herbs!?
I could go on and on!

What do you guys think?!?
Any recommendations!?

April 22, 2014


To say that I am proud is an understatement.

One of my dearest students is exhibiting and defending her BFA thesis in Queens this week, 
and I had the great opportunity to visit with her and see her extraordinary work.

It is amazing that four years has passed (how did that happen!?), 
and to see how much her work has progressed was a pure joy.

Watch out for this one; 
great things are coming!

Look Lucy! There you are!

I think every teacher loves nothing more than to see their students come into their own, and this is the perfect example of why we do what we do.

Thank you for reminding me Lucy!

Keep on rockin' it girl!

April 18, 2014

Happy Friday!

This weekend we are going to celebrate Costa Rican style! 

Or, rather, Pennsylvania style with a Costa Rican flair...

So, our sun isn't as hot, and we don't have monkeys, but we can taste their booze and pretend!

Thank you Paul and Kathy for bringing a little bit of the equator north!

A tropical paradise!

Have a great weekend everyone!

April 14, 2014

Blood Moon Monday

I mourn the loss of my youth. 
At least the loss of my ability to stay up past ten o'clock without completely turning into a pumpkin.
I remember when midnight was my strongest hour!
Sadly, this is no longer the case.

However, if I could relish just a little bit of energy I would definitely stay awake for this one:

Tonight, rather early Tuesday morning (around 2 am) there will be an eclipse known as a 'blood moon;'
apparently it is a full eclipse where the earth's shadow casts a hauntingly red hue on the moon.

Cool beans!

This combination of 10 separate images shows the moon during a total lunar eclipse in 2011 from the Spanish Canary Island of Tenerife.

This image is by Desiree Martin taken from the Spanish Canary Island of Tenerife. I found it on NPR's blogsite below.
Beautiful, yes!?

Here are a few great articles on the event for your reading pleasure:




I would love to see this.
But can I manage to stay awake, or wake up at that time?!

With my luck a big fat cloud will roll in....

Let me know if any of you brave souls see this tonight!

Happy Blood Moon Monday!

April 11, 2014

Happy Friday!!


It is Friday, 
the sun is shining, 
the moon is waxing, 
the snow has melted, 
and Spring is in the air!

Let us celebrate!

Look! Even my drink is happy!
Speaking of happy...

Happy Hour Anyone!?

April 10, 2014

Best Day Ever...

You tell me what is better than a seven mile run, 
a dirty iced chai latte with an extra free shot of espresso, 
a long overdue hair cut, 
free samples at Wegman's,
a sale at Athleta, 
and a Barnes and Nobles outing!?

All sans child!!?!

Not much, my friend...not much...

April 9, 2014

Je m'appelle Karra

I am not French.

My step-father was French Canadian, and to my little bit of knowledge, I have heard that doesn't really count... 

I took four years of French in high school under a man with a thick Boston accent....
ask me how I fared in Paris...
it wasn't pretty. 
In fact, it was an absolute fucking nightmare.
I left broke and in tears, on a Southbound train headed for Italy...

Well, I guess when it is all said in done, I am probably as French as French toast.

Or, French Onion Soup!

mmm...French Onion Soup!

Cry Festival:
Four pounds of onions ready to go!
Onions, after one hour in the oven at 400 degrees.
The house smells yummy!
Two hours and counting...
I hope this is good...
After the third hour...
Getting brown!
Out of the oven and onto the stove top...
The onions are finally nice and dark after three reductions on the stove top.
Like I said, I hope this is good!
Toasted homemade crusty bread with Provolone.
Leave it to me to cook all day and forget the Gruyere!
The cheese is the most important part of French onion soup!
How could I forget!?!
Oh well, we are too far now...

This soup was very very good.
All day good?!
I don't know about that...
But it was pretty good.

Maybe if I hadn't forgotten the key ingredient (Gruyere cheese), it would have been better...

Nonetheless, I would recommend it on a rainy indoor day;
 It is affordable, comforting and your house will smell amazing!

Let me know what you think!

6-8 Servings

4 pounds of onions (I used a combination of yellow and red)
3 tablespoons of butter
1 tsp of salt

1/4 cup of dry sherry

5 sprigs of thyme
1 bay leaf
2 cups of beef broth
4 cups of chicken broth
salt to taste

Gruyere or Provolone Cheese
Crusty Bread

Chop your onions and cry your eyes out.
Coat the inside of a large dutch oven with the 3 tablespoons of butter
Add onions and 1 tsp of salt

Cook for one hour.
Take out and stir.

Cook for another hour.
Take out and stir. Scrape the brown bits from the sides of the dutch oven and stir into the onions.

Cook for another hour (three hours total in the oven).
Take out and stir. 
Put on the stove top over medium heat and stir until the onions start to brown. Continue to scrape the bottom and sides of the dutch oven to capture all of the beautiful caramelization.

Pour in 1/2 a cup of water. Stir, scrape and reduce. Repeat this three more time.

When the onions are dark brown, add the sherry, scrape and stir until reduced one last time.

Add 2 cups of water, the beef and chicken broth, thyme and bay leaf. Allow to simmer on low for 30-40 minutes. Salt to taste.

At the end of the simmer, toast your bread until crunchy. Top with cheese and melt.

To serve: Pour one cup of soup into a large bowl. Add a sprinkling or slice of cheese. Top with more soup. Serve with toasted cheese bread!


* I adapted this recipe from Cook's magazine and my own taste preferences...

April 4, 2014

Happy Friday!

After four great runs since Monday, 
one being a 7-miler, another being an 8-miler,
iced coffees are a girl's best friend.

Well, that and Wegman's pizza.
But let's stay focused.

Did I mention that I ran 8 miles yesterday?!
Yes, the furthest since last year's half marathon in June.
I'm so proud of myself.

Regardless, this is one of my favorite iced coffee concoctions.
The only way to improve upon this recipe would be to add a little Bailey's...which I might have to do tomorrow when I am at the Elk's rubber ducky race...

Have a great weekend everyone!

Did I mention that I ran 8 miles yesterday!?!


Coffee to brew 8-10 cups (I prefer dark roasts here, but it is your call)
2 tablespoons of ground cinnamon
Starbuck's organic chai (you can find this at Target, or most grocery stores)
Milk or cream (I am a fan, but I don't recommend skim here. It seriously adds zero flavor)

Add two tablespoons of ground cinnamon to your coffee grounds and brew. Allow to cool to room temperature, or put it in the refrigerator. Once it is cool, pour over ice. You don't want to pour it over the ice when it is hot because it will water it down too much. Add a splash of Starbuck's organic chai and a splash of milk or cream. If you are one of the lucky kids to own an espresso machine, add a shot of chilled espresso. Delish!


April 2, 2014

Chocolate, Cherry, Kettle-Cooked Chip Cookies

So much for not eating sugar.
That lasted for about three seconds,
or as Brandi would say:
 "A hot second"

Regardless, who wants to bring salad to a picnic when you can bring cookies?!?

Nobody likes the salad lady. 
We pretend we do, but we don't.
We like the cookie lady.

Here is a simple twist on the traditional chocolate chip cookie. 

Nothing ground breaking; 
I simply added dried cherries and kettle cooked potato chips to the batter.

Pretzels work well too.

Preheat oven to 375

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt (Plus more for sprinkling)
1 cup of softened butter (2 sticks)
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 lg. eggs
2 cups of miniature chocolate chips (I prefer Hershey)
1 cup of dried cherries
1 cup of kettle cooked chips or broken up pretzels

1. Combine flour, baking soda and salt
2. Mix flour, baking soda and vanilla 
3. Add eggs, mixing in one at a time
4. Slowly mix in the flour/soda/salt
5. Gently stir in the chocolate chips and cherries
6. Drop small mounds onto an ungreased cookie sheet
7. Stick potato chips or pretzels into the mounds
8. Bake in preheated oven for +-9 minutes
9. Bring to the picnic and enjoy the praise and admiration of all the salad ladies.