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Archive for the ‘Sort of About Food’ Category

Today marks the 3rd anniversary of this blog. Am I happy about it? That depends on the day, but usually yes. And sometimes, more often than not these days, I would say no.

I admit that I’ve toyed a lot lately – a lot!–  with quitting this past time of mine. Part of me feels if I hit the ‘Delete’ button that there wouldn’t be many people who would notice. You see, the thing is, everyone is writing a blog these days; it’s the thing to do- it’s cool, trendy etc etc. And the sheer number of food blogs out there is astonishing beyond imagination. It seems like anyone who’s ever been told ‘Hey, this is GOOD!’ has decided to write a food blog. Some of them are amazing, and they humble me greatly. Others? Feh. A can of soup poured over a microwaved potato somehow doesn’t strike me as being fodder for a blog, but hey, who am I to ask what other people want? After three years it has become apparent to me that I still haven’t got a clue, and that maybe I never will. This has become OK with me, in a hard-fought and harsh sort of way.

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I’ve had some recent face-palm moments of anxiety though, there’s been ranting and grousing; Facebook conversations with treasured blog buddies and true friends have been able to talk me me down off the ledge which is why I am here to write this anniversary post. These moments of extreme instability have thankfully had a purpose. I have at least come to understand the most important reason why I continue to do this even when it often makes me crazy; I would rather have half a dozen genuine and honest comments about what I post that come right from a readers heart lush with praise than a hundred fickle and shallow ones that only say ‘Yum!’. Because it’s important for me to touch someone through this giant web we live in, to touch a part of them that matters. Our lives are too informal and detached. We type messages to one another instead of speaking face to face, fall into television shows and disappear, plug in our earbuds and tune out the rest of the world. If this is how life has turned, I can jump aboard with the rest and I certainly have. You all know, if you’ve been here long enough, how much I love Facebook and how it keeps me connected with so many, over thousands of miles, the past and the present colliding all in one crazy spot, and this blog is yet another way that I can reach out across the spaces in between and give everyone a part of who I am. That is what’s important to me. I want it to feel like coming home to an old and trusted friend. My reward is in your words, and I want you to know I appreciate them immensely.

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The rest of it is certainly still evolving and no one is more surprised than I am about how this blog has pushed me to stretch and re-define my food tastes and more thoroughly examine both what I do and how I eat, and in keeping with the way I choose to nourish myself and my family, the food will remain real and honest. My hope each time I post a recipe is that you find something in it that lights a spark. That you read the recipe and say not only “I can do that!” but “I WANT to do that!” Because I don’t find it at all coincidental that as we strive towards that always elusive brass ring, surrounding ourselves with technology and silencing the voices of those around us in favor of an array of electronics, that the urge and need to feed our stomachs AND our souls grows ever louder and more persistent. We congregate where there is nourishment for every aspect of our lives and our hunger isn’t always for food; it’s for something to touch us, to touch our lives and give us a reason to smile, a means for being connected – really connected and not just with a power cord-  and I hope that you’ll find a small part of that here.

This blog- this three years in the making blog of mine, it’s not about mass appeal and I hope someone smacks me a good one if I even think to post an ad on it. It isn’t about my stats, or readership. I don’t feel I need to roam the USA going to blog conferences and schmoozing (I hate schmoozing for schmooze sake….I just like to hang out and talk to people). I’m not big on posting recipes that have worn out a welcome, I don’t jump on food trends, I’m not a locavore and I dislike labels. I love to cook and I’m really darn good at it. That’s all I want to share.

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And I did promise you something food related as you put up with me in my last post going on about learning life lessons in the garden and talking about my darling shaved cat, so I won’t disappoint but this is something pretty simple. Almost too simple. That’s what makes it so good though.

It’s a wrap.
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Nothing superbly special, right?

But I’ll tell you, start with this creamy Avocado White Bean Spread and any wrap you make will be just a titch better. Grill some chicken, beef strips or shrimp, get some good crab meat or top quality tuna and add whatever vegetables you prefer. Grate some good cheese into it. Wrap it in a nice flavorful tortilla and pour some ice tea. The weather has been HOT here, and this cool and quick dinner was just the ticket. We were picking at the crumbs and sighing in contentment at each other. A few fresh cherries rounded out a perfect summer meal.


Creamy Avocado and White Bean Spread

From Eating Well magazine (and adapted slightly by Kate)

1 15-oz can Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 ripe avocado
1/2 c. grape tomatoes (my addition)
1-2 T. finely minced red onion (or use some good onion powder like Penzeys)
Fresh ground black pepper and coarse salt to taste

In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients and process until slightly chunky. Scrape sides. Pulse once or twice more to fully combine and scrape into a clean bowl. Season to taste.

Spread about nice layer of this on a tortilla and top with your choice of fillings. Roll up tightly and enjoy. It’s also delicious as a chip and raw vegetable dip (but it does NOT photograph well! Sorry!)

Would you like something equally delicious and appealing with little fuss? How about a nice Mexican Rice?

Kate’s Mexican Rice

1 15-oz can diced or whole tomato
1 medium onion
1 jalapeno (seeded if you wish)
1 4-oz can green chilies
1 1/2 c. white rice

Fresh lime wedges and oil for cooking.

In the bowl of a food processor, place tomato, onion (cut into fourths) jalapeno and green chilies. Blend until mixture is finely chopped, almost to the point of being like a thin salsa. Pour into a measuring cup. It should be about 3-4 cups.

In a deep skillet over medium high flame, heat about 2 T. of cooking oil until very hot. Pour in the rice and stir to coat with oil. Turn heat down to medium and continue to cook, stirring regularly until the rice is turning browned and becoming very fragrant, about 5-8 minutes. The pan should be smoking hot by now. Carefully pour in the tomato mixture- careful of the steam!- and quickly stir to combine it with the toasted rice. Allow to come to a simmer and then cover, reduce heat and cook until liquid is absorbed. Turn off heat and allow pan to stand, covered, for about 10-15 minutes. Fluff with a fork and serve, squirting some fresh lime juice over the top.

NOTES FOR THE RICE:
You can stir in another chopped jalapeno before serving the cooked rice. It adds another level of heat to the dish. Other good additions are canned black beans (rinsed), frozen corn, sauteed zucchini or roasted peppers. Or all of it. For varied flavors, try using fire roasted tomatoes. If you wish to use fresh tomato, the equivalent would be about three medium sized ones and it’s a good idea if you peel them before using. This is excellent as a rice to use with burritos and tastes fabulous topped with cold chunks of avocado.

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45yrs

It was, overall, one of the best birthdays I’ve had in a long time.

And I’m really not one to blow my own horn much; attention focused solely on me makes me uncomfortable, and I’m glad no one videotaped the singing of ‘Happy Birthday’ because I turned my head away for most of it.

Still, I did ‘blow out the candles’ that we forgot to place on the cake.

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And made a wish and overall, I really enjoyed having a house full of people who came to help me celebrate- friends and family alike- and at the end of it when I collapsed nearly catatonic in bed and grimaced through my aching legs and feet and the pounding in my head from so much laughter and talking and children running amok shrieking in delight- which is such an amazing sound!- I lay there thinking how lucky and blessed and fortunate I am to have turned 45 with such  aplomb.

Those amazing birthday cakes were made courtesy of my cousin Lora who has a little cake decorating business going. If you’re local and in need of a delicious and lovely cake, contact me and I’ll pass along her information.

One was a Marble cake with Bavarian cream filling…

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The other was lemon cake with lemon curd filling….

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Both were moist, tender and wonderful!! And if you notice the size of them looking rather substantial, let me tell you….there wasn’t much left when the night ended. Our families and friends LOVE cake.

The food was all good- a few standards like meatballs and sausages were nothing to write home about, but the other dishes were pretty tasty.

From the next day, here’s a superb plate of goodness.

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Starting at the top and working clockwise, we have a nice Bulgar Pilaf, courtesy of my favorite Eating Well magazine….

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Mike’s favorite Hummus, which earned rave reviews from many party-goers.

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The irrepressible Roasted Vegetable Spread which is fast becoming a go-to menu item in our house

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And a Spinach and Orzo Greek style salad that was equally enjoyed and appreciated.

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It was an exhausting day, I’ll tell you, but totally worth it. The next day, which was my actual birthday, I didn’t even get out of my pj’s until mid-afternoon and that was only because I had in my hot little hand a coupon for a free birthday drink from my favorite coffee shop and it was either go there and sip a latte, or fall face first onto my sofa and head back into Dreamland. I love me some good caffeine, and it saved the day.

Now onward and upward into fully enjoying being 45.

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You would think that having a national holiday involving ice cream might be a great idea in, say July or some other typically hot month, but no…..it’s November 11th, and along with Veteran’s Day, today is National Ice Cream Sundae Day.

It’s surprising what you come across when you research food holidays, like the official website of the Ice Cream Sundae; an entire page of quotes regarding the time-honored dessert and not one, but two books.

And who knew there was such blazing controversy over the origin and official ‘first served’  status of the ice cream sundae? Despite the arguments and vitriole surrounding it, the hands-down site of the first ever ice cream sundae created is known to be Ithaca, New York. From the website:

“The year was 1892. Ithaca, New York, was dotted with local drug stores, where many a nickel was spent for a dish of ice cream. After Sunday services at the Unitarian Church, Reverend John M. Scott visited the Platt & Colt Pharmacy in downtown Ithaca, New York, for his usual dish of vanilla ice cream — but on one fateful day, history was altered forever. That day, instead of plain vanilla for the Reverend, Chester Platt dipped his scoop of ice cream into a champagne saucer, poured cherry syrup over the top, and dressed it with a candied cherry. As the two men pondered over what to call the delightful new concoction, Scott proposed that it be named after the day on which it was invented: Cherry Sunday”

The controversy stems from Two Rivers, Wisconsin and it’s claim to have served a ‘soda-less’ ice cream treat, that is, ice cream without the fizzy water, and throughout the ensuing years there became quite the rivalry over this; there was an entire segment on the CBS Evening News in 2006 about the ongoing dispute and furor from the Two Rivers town manager at the time who adamantly claimed his town’s right to fame. It didn’t seem to matter to him that a copy of a newspaper in Ithaca, dated April 5, 1892 advertised the now-famous concoction at the now legendary soda fountain, Platt and Colt. Two Rivers has no such documentation, and apparently they aren’t willing to go down without a fight. Can you believe the things some people will argue about?

The best part about examining these holidays is doing the research at home.

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As we sat down on a chilly November evening to indulge in ice cream, chocolate, nuts and cookies, we ended up in a friendly familial discussion over what constitutes a Tin Roof Sundae and a Turtle Sundae. Mike thought the Tin Roof was a Turtle with nuts, and Griffin insisted- because he’s 14 and knows everything– that a Turtle was with chocolate, caramel and pecans and a Tin Roof had peanuts. I looked at them both, spooning my ice cream into my mouth and wondered why they wouldn’t just stop debating and eat, for pete’s sake!

It turned out, surprisingly, that Griffin was right.

But a sundae, no matter what you put on it, is the most popular and recognizable of ice cream treats anywhere, I would wager even more so than the ice cream malt. And if you’re ever in a position to fully indulge yourself in a decadent dessert, head to Serendipity 3 Restaurant in New York City for their $1,000 ice cream sundae, composed of the following:

” The Serendipity Golden Opulence Sundae, sold by Serendipity 3 restaurant is a dessert that consists of five scoops of Tahitian vanilla bean ice cream infused with Madagascar vanilla, covered in 23-carat edible gold leaf, rare Amedei Porceleana and Chuao chocolate, American Golden caviar, passion fruit, orange and Armagnac candied fruits from Paris, marzipan cherries, and decorated with real gold dragees. The sundae is served in a baccarat Harcourt crystal goblet with an 18-karat gold spoon “

Or just get some Edy’s, Breyers, or Kemps and make your own delightful creation. Got a favorite combination??? Do share!! I love mint chip ice cream, chocolate sauce and crushed cookies. If you must add whip cream to mine, make it the real stuff!!

“It may be said that ice cream is the best drug available for both mind and body. It is spiritually uplifting, nutritious and wholesome. According to many nutritionists, the calcium in ice cream has a calming effect. A number of psychiatrists, instead of prescribing tranquilizing medication, advise their patients to have some ice cream.”
Prof. Ralph Slovenko, Journal of Psychiatry & Law


Now that’s MY kind of diagnosis!


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In my endless research on food holidays and/or food facts to discuss for 30 days, I came across a site called Learn Something New Today and discovered some rather silly and inane things about food. So before we get to National Cappuccino Day and National Harvey Wallbanger Day, let’s have a chuckle.

Since it is National Fig Week still, here’s a bit of trivia on the good ol’ Fig Newton, one of my favorite packaged cookies. Created in 1851 by the Kennedy Biscuit Works in Cambridge, MA, the previous discoveries had been named for local towns and the Fig Newton nearly was called the Fig Shrewsbury. It’s a good thing that didn’t stick or we likely would have never known the fun commercial jingle done by the guy in the fig suit. ‘Oooey gooey rich and chewy inside; golden flaky tender cakey outside, wrap the inside in the outside, is it good?? Darn tootin! Doin’t the big Fig Newton!!’

When KFC’s slogan ‘Finger Lickin’ Good’ was translated in Chinese, it came out as ‘Eat your fingers off’. Hmmm…..Must. Not. Respond.

In the Great Food Almanac by Irene Chalmers, Elvis Presley’s last meal was apparently four scoops of ice cream and half a dozen chocolate chip cookies. There’s an verbal bomb in there that I won’t touch because I just love ‘Hunka Hunka Burnin’ Love’ and ‘Cold Kentucky Rain’.

In total there have been 37 different kinds of  Nabisco animal crackers since 1902.  The current crackers are tiger, cougar, camel, rhinoceros, kangaroo, hippopotamus, bison, lion, hyena, zebra, elephant, sheep, bear, gorilla, monkey, seal and giraffe. They’ve also gotten far more detailed too.

Apples are more efficient than caffeine at waking you up in the morning.  Anyone want to test this one out and let me know the results??

And um……ewww- The average chocolate bar has 8 insect legs in it.

Double in the ‘ewwww’ department- Coca-Cola was originally green. Yummay, huh?

Peanuts are an ingredient in dynamite so if you eat too many and feel like you might explode then you’ll know why.

Pearls melt in vinegar.

Although it can’t really be proven, in deference to the classic commercial, it takes approximately 317 licks to get to the Tootsie roll center of a Tootsie pop. If you watch the video, prepare for some creative license with a new millenium twist and don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Ok, whooo boy that was fun huh? Let’s move on.

It’s National Cappuccino Day, today November 8th. Having worked in coffee shops and studied coffee and coffee drink history, this is one of those terms that has been so far removed from it’s original form and meaning that almost no one knows what it means anymore.  And given the prevalence of those ridiculous machines in convenience stores around the country that dispense scalding hot flavored instant coffee and milk powder and call it a Cappuccino, it’s no wonder most everyone who ever ordered a ‘Vanilla Nut Cappuccino’ from me in the coffee shop had to be patiently educated about what to expect. Or silently beaten over the head; I could never decide.

The very very first coffee drink that was called a Cappuccino was named as such due to the similar color between the espresso coffee, steamed milk or cream drink and the brown color of the robes worn by Capuchin order of Friars- not Monks as many believe, there is a difference and you should know what it is- and in it’s original form, never was topped with a ‘cap’ of foam, suggesting the origin of the name. The Italians were the first to give it the dollop of foam and called it a ‘Cappucio’, wherein it derived into ‘Cappucino’, a diminutive in the Italian language. Whatever people wish to call it, the drink is made with espresso and usually a half milk/half foam topping. Most people who drink the Cappuccino prefer it to be ‘wet, or a Cappuccino Chiaro that has more milk and less foam, as opposed to a ‘dry’, or Cappuccino Scuro, which is less milk and more foam. You can also order a Macchiato, and if it’s made correctly, it should be just a shot of espresso topped with nothing but foam. This was my preferred drink on those mornings in the coffee biz, like the middle of dark and cold January, when I would unlock the door at 6:00am and just know that I needed something akin to an intravenous feed of caffeine to make it to 11:00am when my shift would end. Thankfully those days are long gone- the coffee shop, not the caffeine. I’ve been a caffeine junkie since high school and have no plan to quit any time soon.

It’s also National Harvey Wallbanger Day. This obscure drink is basically a Screwdriver (vodka and orange juice) with a shot of Galliano liquor in it, an herby anise flavored liquid with some hints of vanilla. The origin of the drink is sketchy, but legend has it that a California surfer named Harvey liked his Screwdrivers with a shot of Galliano in them, and after one too many of them, he used to bang into walls. ‘Nuf said about that.

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(cappuccino photo courtesy of All Coffee Recipes)

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November 6th is National Men Make Dinner Day! woot! woot! woot!

In my house I do virtually all of the grocery shopping. I’m fine with it, really, as the shopping is something I have gotten down to a science from all those years as a single mother where I had to get through the store with a little guy who had a limited tolerance for anything that required him to be confined, stand still, stick by my side, keep his voice down, not touch everything in sight (he’s still the most tactile kid I know) and generally be on the best behavior he could muster. I learned to plot out my grocery list based on the outline of the store and to stick with it religiously, mostly as a matter of budget constraints but also because I knew that I had maybe 30-45 minutes tops, including the check-out, before Griffin would start escalating his voice to near stratospheric levels to make sure I knew of his boredom. The memories of those times include some really hilarious and heart-warming stories of things he did in the grocery store, though, and he loves talking about them with me, but it’s nice now to shop without a young child in tow.  I still make my list out according to the store layout and on most occasions, even my major shopping trips, I’m in and out in far less than an hour, including bagging all my own stuff.

And of course I do nearly all the cooking. That’s not really a negotiable aspect with Mike. He can step up to the plate when he needs to, like when I get that glazed over look of total internal implosion, but he works really hard and is always very focused on it, and it just isn’t something that he keeps front and center on his mind. I, however, am constantly thinking about food. It all works out.

Mike makes the most stellar burritos and fajitas ever, including scratch tortillas that we cook up in a big iron horse of a tortilla grill, one of our smartest kitchen purchases. With only a few ingredients kept on hand, we can whip these up at a moment’s notice and have a delicious and easy meal.

And there he is……making Fajitas!

He does a simple preparation of sliced peppers and onions, cooked in a smoking hot pan to give them that seared and sizzling flavor. Seasoned chicken strips cook up really quick, and there’s always a pot of rice, a bowl of my killer guacamole and the ever-present chipotle peppers to give them some eye-popping kick.

The nice thing is, it’s a meal that Griffin will devour no matter what. I just love it that Mike willingly puts this meal together for us to give me a break in the kitchen. I don’t need it too often, but I love it regardless, especially because he looks so cute at the stove.

It’s also National Nachos Day!!! Nothing like a giant pile of toasty chips, melted cheese and a whole host of gooey toppings to mow through, huh??

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Do I wish this was right in front of me this minute, and yes it’s before Noon my time but who cares? That kills me in it’s drippy cheesy (but bad for my tummy) jalapeno laden sour cream dressed yummy, and oh my god why don’t I have any?? goodness.

{{nacho photo courtesy of either dailyfoolishness.com or San Nachos Bar in Oklahoma City- you pick cuz I can’t tell}}

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So go eat some Nachos if you can, and have a plate for me or better yet, get the Guy to make them for you!

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It’s National Chicken Day

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and National Candy Day. Oh the possibilities.

And according to those who insist on making everything about the bizarre, it’s also Waiting for the Barbarians Day, but I don’t think you want me to talk about that in terms of food-relatedness. That would be gross.

AND, if that’s not enough- these food holidays are everywhere!- the first week in November is National Fig Week, I imagine because figs are becoming ripe and ready to devour right about now. Anybody got any?? I love a good fresh squishy tasty fig. And I even love them dried.

Let’s start at the beginning and quickly move on….I mean, seriously, write about chicken?? What can be said that hasn’t been said? What could be done with it that is fresh and new? Chicken is the most widely used domesticated fowl in the entire world, and in terms of cooking, there are those who either love or hate it. It’s everywhere you look. Yes, the ubiquitous boneless skinless breast is lean and a decent source of protein, but the ones that you can normally buy in the market are almost always twice the standard portion size, so if you even eat one of them you’re likely eating too much. They also tend towards flavorless and dull, except, as those would argue, they become a virtual tabula rasa for anything you wish to add.  Sure, yeah…..and if you aren’t careful you’ll overcook the thing and it becomes stringy white fowl flesh to choke down. But don’t get me wrong; I buy them and we use them a lot, and I can cook them to be tender, moist, flavor-filled and delicious but I think I am in the minority. I’ve heard way too many arguments against them from others, and it’s just one of those food items that comes down to personal taste. They are all like that and we all just need to deal with it. I don’t begrudge anyone’s choices.

I personally love chicken thighs. I have always been a dark chicken devotee from the time I can recall eating it, and it likely stems from attempting to struggle through an overcooked piece of white meat. But even when I finally discovered that it didn’t have to be that way, the dark meat still remained a favorite. The thighs can be very cheap, and your best bet is to learn how to de-bone them as it will save you at the check-out. Even if you don’t remove the bone prior to cooking, it’s pretty simple to slip the meat free once it’s done. These always hold up well on the grill and take on a marinade like a champion prize fighter. They are nearly impossible to wreck.

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I love this hilarious ad campaign. We aren’t big consumers of beef, much to my child’s angst, so I can’t agree more with the Chik-Fil-A cows who urge us all to ‘Eat mor chik-n’.

It’s now about Figs.

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I love figs- fresh, dried, in a Newton- they are perfectly wonderful food. Figs go wayyyyyy back and are considered of utmost importance in terms of being objects of worship and cultural interest in many areas of the world. They are noted as being one of the first plant species deliberately bred for agriculture in the Middle East more than 11,000 years ago. We all know what happened in the Garden with the fig leaf, and they are listed as one of the foods found in the Promised Land according to the Torah. It is one of the two sacred trees in Islam, and is pivotal in Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism religions and they are a key component in many tropical rainforests providing food to many animal and bird species. They are an excellent source of fiber, potassium and calcium and have shown to offer protection against macular degeneration. Of the more than 150 varieties grown around the world, the most popular ones are the Black Mission, Calymyrna, Brown Turkey, Kadota and Adriatic, and all of them are subtley varied in terms of flavor and dramatically in color.

Then, finally- CANDY.

I’m not a huge candy eater but I do love my dark chocolate. Our trick-or-treaters got a wide selection of minis of every kind, and hands down when I told them to pick something, they grabbed for the little boxes of Junior Mints. Those disappeared the fastest.  I certainly can’t argue; my absolute favorite thing to nibble on lately has been something very similar.

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This, to me, is the perfect marriage of chocolate and mint. Not too much of one or the other, and it’s dark chocolate so who can argue? The other perfect combination that I love is the little miniature Milky Way Midnights. Talk about perfection! One little bite of intense dark chocolate and the nougat-y caramel-y goodness of Milky Way. I made sure there were some of those in my Halloween hand-outs strictly so I could indulge. I used to LOVE candy as a kid, and recall with great fondness riding my bike to the local corner shop to peruse the candy selection with my sisters and neighborhood friends. I loved Sugar Babies, Bubs Daddy, Hot Tamales, Brown Cows and LifeSavers. I don’t need candy in my life anymore, but a bite here and there is very satisfying. I’m really glad to have gotten my candy-eating out of my system.

Happy Candy Day, Chicken Day and Fig Week!

{{information for this post was found on the California Fig Board website and The World’s Healthiest Food website. Candy image from Ghiradelli.com, cows from Chik-Fil-A}}

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I might be a little crazy to feel excited about National Blog Posting Month but there it is, my true feelings. I didn’t even mind the cat’s usual wake-up call at the crack of dawn this morning. Past years of blogging have intrigued me to the principle behind the month but I have never gotten motivated enough to participate. This year, I’ve been scheming since early in October.

For the uninitiated, NaBloPoMo is simple; write a post a day for 30 days. That’s it. November is the traditional month for it, developed after the idea of National Novel Writing Month where you challenge yourself to write a novel in 30 days. Since my current novel is running towards the two-year mark, it’s unlikely I could do that, but write 30 food posts in a month? That I can do. These days NBPM happens year round, usually with a theme.

Back in October I posted about monthly happenings, holidays of the sort, that occur for our 10th month. Just to grease the wheels and really get me out of the garage, for this post I’ll discuss November. If you want an entire breakdown of monthly celebrations, go here. I plan to just mention food occurrences, and a few other important ones.

November is American Diabetes Month, Gluten Free Diet Awareness Month (visit my friend Angela for some amazing GF/CF recipes- she is tops in her field!) Good Nutrition Month, I Am So Thankful Month, National Adoption Month, National Georgia Pecan Month, National Life Writing Month, the aforementioned National Novel Writing Month, National Peanut Butter Lovers Month (we will happily re-visit and discuss this in depth on the 20th) National Pomegranate Month, National Roasting Month, National Vegan Month, Pepper Month and Raisin Bread Month.

I mention Nat’l Adoption Month for the sole reason that adoption is something that has touched the lives of many people I have known in my lifetime, including my best friend Joanna. When she knew she couldn’t have children of her own, there was no doubt in her mind that her and her husband would adopt, and I had the monumental joy of watching the entire process unfold in her life from the moment she met her future family until the day they sealed the deal forever. Jay and Cecelia are wonderful children who have really blessed her life and I couldn’t be more thankful for her opportunity.

There’s another one; being thankful- as in I Am So Thankful Month. We shouldn’t set aside just one day a year, the fourth Thursday in November precisely, to be thankful for everything in our lives, including the wonderful family, friends, acquaintances, coworkers etc. that bless our lives each day. That being said, while a month is better, we really need to remember every day of what brings joy and happiness to our lives. I could list out everyone in my life that’s important to me, but they all should know anyway- even if they don’t read my blog, which they should!!-and that would bore you to death. I’ll just gently remind everyone to make more of an effort to recognize this in your own life.

Good Nutrition- this just shouldn’t be sneezed at; good nutrition, healthy eating and regular exercise are vital to well-being. Again, it’s something that needs to be recognized daily, not just one month a year. I really don’t need to talk any more about this.

Gluten Free Awareness- I’m hardly one to start on about this topic; my personal awareness of this has only been enhanced by the presence of Angela who has Celiac disease (she’s a silly yak….teehee, get it?) and the amazing and inventive way that she turns cookies, cakes and other goodies into delicious and healthy treats for her family, which includes two daughters who are silly yaks too. You hardly even know that what you’re eating is gluten-free as you can barely contain yourself from gobbling down all her delicious foods. Visit her blog and enjoy.

Then there’s the foods. And if you stick around this month and visit me to see if I’m keeping my NBPM promise, then you will see 29 more posts all centered on a particular food (and a beverage or two) each day.  Along with those monthly holidays there are daily ones as well, and that’s the journey I will take you on this month.

See you tomorrow!!

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