Monday, January 9, 2017

Egyptian Rabbit, Rice and Molikia

The day we picked to get married was also the same day that God decided it would be funny to drop over 3 feet of snow as a wedding present to a guy who had never before seen snow before.... who said God didn't have a sense of humor.  Anyway - as a surprise for our anniversary dinner this year, I had planned to make Egyptian rabbit, rice and molikia for my husband.  God again decided to throw a little snow into my plans (only 6" this time) so dinner was postponed until last night - but after all was said and done -- dinner was amazing, the kids and Sham both said it tasted just like his mom used to make ... which made me happy !  I used 2 Instant Pot to make dinner quickly ... and it was extremely easy.  

For the Rabbit - I took 2 frozen rabbits, threw them in the pressure cooker with some water, onions and 3 bay leaves.  Pressure cooked for 20 minutes (next time I'll only do 15, but they were still good)  Took them out, strained the broth, used 4 cups of broth and 4 cups on rice in another pressure cooker (One that I save for just yogurt and rice and other non-spicy foods).  Hit the rice button and then used the rest of the broth to make the molikia.  Just brought the broth to a boil on the stove top, added 2 packages of frozen molikia and allowed it to thaw/cook until it was all bubbling.  Browned the rabbit a bit on the saute function in Instant Pot # 1 and dinner was ready.  So quick, so easy, so good, I'll certainly be making this more often !

video

Sunday, January 1, 2017

IP Hawaiian BBQ Chicken


Made this last night for dinner - got thumbs up from EVERYONE, which rarely happens.

  • 3 lbs Chicken (I used boneless, skinless chicken thighs)
  • 1 C BBQ Sauce
  • 1/2 can of diced Pineapple (or dump the entire can, but use juice only NOT heavy syrup!)
  • 1 cup Coconut Milk
  • Chili Flakes to taste


Pretty simple really - I dumped the pineapple in first, mixed the other ingredients in a separate bowl, dumped the chicken in that bowl, gave it a stir, and then dumped the entire thing on top of the pineapple in the IP (HINT - take the insert out of the IP whenever you are making something ... that way no chance of making a mess!)

Pushed poultry and lowered the time from the standard 15 minutes to 10 minutes.  I let mine release NP for about 5 minutes, then couldn't wait any longer so I did the fast release, and wow, did the steam coming off smell good.  I took out the chicken once I got the lid off (I had washed the bowl I had used earlier so just used that) and then put the IP on Saute' with just the sauce in it and boiled it down until it got thick (I added a little cornstarch mixed with a tad bit more coconut milk to make it go faster)  I also used my potato masher to squish the larger chunks of pineapple while it was boiling down.  

Served it all over steamed rice .... and there wasn't any left to take a photo of :(   I guess I'll have to make this again !


Happy New Year !!

Bringing the Blog back to life in 2017.

This will be the year I :

MAKE me time every day !
Get my house in order, declutter, and clean on a schedule.
Use Plan To Eat regularly
Loose the Weight
Get to the gym
QUILT !

On the first of every month I will refer back to this post and report in on how I'm doing !

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Safety Harbor, Florida

December 29, 2016

We just got back from a very relaxing week in Safety Harbor, Florida.    My husband loves to travel so I am used to wheeling and dealing and getting great deals.

Airfare --- since it was a last minute flight, I didn't have time to shop around and get super deals - I ended up flying Spirit, basic airfare was $700, but after bags and seats and government taxes, I ended up paying $1,056   not great for 4 people.

Car - I've found time and time again that Costco Travel has the best rates for rental cars.   For the week, I spent $370 for a standard size sport utility. 

Hotel - I found an all inclusive deal in Tampa, Florida -- more on that later.  But for the first night we stayed at a Fairfield, Marriott I've used before - nothing special - especially since our flight took off  2 1/2 hours late and we didn't get into Tampa International until 11ish.  We just needed a place to sleep that first night, so $90.

Now - The Hotel -- We stayed at Safety Harbor Resort and Spa -- I found it when I was searching for an all-inclusive in Florida.  I called first think Friday morning, and my room was already ready.  That was nice.  I booked a package that included the room, breakfast and dinner, as well as drinks for both the kids (water, juice and soda) and adults (free "drink of the day" plus more) I thought with included meals I'd save some $$$.  Maybe, but I don't know if it was worth it.  First night - they had a pasta bar so instead of ordering off the all-inclusive menu, we went for the pasta bar - cost me a couple extra dollars per person, but worth it - fresh shrimp and pasta - yum.  The next morning there was an egg station set up, so breakfast was good, as it was Sunday, but every day after that was kinda borning and the same.  Dinners .... after that first pasta night ... yuck.  We tried the shrimp and rissiotto -- 5 nice size shrimp, and about a pound of heavy, sticky rissiotto.  No one ate it.  Nadia had salmon and cous cous ... better, the asparagus was still crisp, but the cous cous ... tasted leftover not fresh.  That was the last time we tried dinner there.  So my recommendation - don't do the food package.  They do have great spa services, so a package with included spa treatments would be my next choice.  The rate for the room with breakfast, dinner and drinks plus unlimited use of the spa pools and hot tubs, steam room, sauna, ect was $251 per night, but the added "fees" like Occupany Tax of $9 per night, and 4 different state taxes combined $18 night, plus $16 night hotel service fee, and then another $2 tax on that --- brings the total per night to nearly $300 per night.  Total bill was nearly $1500 for 5 nights for 4 people.  If we had eaten every meal there it would have been a decent deal ... I did find out that you could apply the coupons toward menu items - we may do that next time.  But the part that was worth it ..... the spas and pools.  Amazing.  Had my first ever facial.  Relaxing.  Went to differernt water classes (free and included in package)  and outdoor pool, the only places under 16yos were welcome, an outdoor lap pool, and indoor spa pool and 2 hot tubs, in the ladies locker room - a sauna, steam room and plunge pool (men had the same but no plunge pool)  Amazing and clean.  They give you robes and flip flops upon request.  Plenty of locker rooms to store your stuff.   There is a bar right next to the one outside pool - plus a tiki grill.  They had the best food that we enjoyed while we were there.  Overall, a very enjoyable vacation, and I will visit the Resort again ---- but maybe next time without the kids.  

Monday, July 25, 2016

Rio Swim Schedule

Rio Olympics Swimming Schedule

I have Comcast Cable, and will be updating with times to watch it live.
SATURDAY, AUG 6TH
Men’s 400m IM
Women’s 100m Fly
Men’s 400m Free
Women’s 400m IM
Men’s 100m Breast
Women’s 4 x 100m Free Relay
SUNDAY, AUG 7TH
Women’s 100m Back
Men’s 200m Free
Women’s 100m Breast
Men’s 100m Back
Women’s 400m Free
MONDAY, AUG 8TH
Women’s 200m Free
Men’s 200m Fly
Women’s 200m IM
TUESDAY, AUG 9TH
Men’s 100m Free
Women’s 200m Fly
Men’s 200m Breast
Men’s 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay
Men’s 4 x 100m Free Relay
WEDNESDAY, AUG 10TH
Women’s 100m Free
Men’s 200m Back
Women’s 200m Breast
Men’s 200m IM
Women’s 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay
THURSDAY, AUG 11TH
Men’s 50m Free
Women’s 800m Free
Men’s 100m Fly
Women’s 200m Back
FRIDAY, AUG 12TH
Women’s 50m Free
Men’s 1500m Free
Women’s 4 x 100m Medley Relay
Men’s 4 x 100m Medley Relay
SEMIFINALS & FINALS
SATURDAY, AUG 6TH
Men’s 400m IM – Final
Women’s 100m Fly – Semifinal
Men’s 400m Free – Final
Women’s 400m IM – Final
Men’s 100m Breast – Semifinal
Women’s 4 x 100m Free Relay – Final
SUNDAY, AUG 7TH
Women’s 100m Fly – Final
Men’s 200m Free – Semifinal
Women’s 100m Breast – Semifinal
Men’s 100m Breast – Final
Women’s 400m Free – Final
Men’s 100m Back – Semifinal
Women’s 100m Back – Semifinal
Men’s 4 x 100m Free Relay – Final
MONDAY, AUG 8TH
Women’s 200m Free – Semifinal
Men’s 200m Free – Final
Women’s 100m Back – Final
Men’s 100m Back – Final
Women’s 100m Breast – Final
Men’s 200m Fly – Semifinal
Women’s 200m IM — Semifinal
TUESDAY, AUG 9TH
Men’s 100m Free – Semifinal
Women’s 200m Free – Final
Men’s 200m Fly – Final
Women’s 200m Fly – Semifinal
Men’s 200m Breast – Semifinal
Women’s 200m IM – Final
Men’s 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay – Final
WEDNESDAY, AUG 10TH
Men’s 200m Breast – Final
Women’s 100m Free – Semifinal
Men’s 200m Back – Semifinal
Women’s 200m Fly – Final
Men’s 100m Free – Final
Women’s 200m Breast – Semifinal
Men’s 200m IM – Semifinal
Women’s 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay – Final
THURSDAY, AUG 11TH
Men’s 50m Free – Semifinal
Women’s 200m Breast – Final
Men’s 200m Back – Final
Women’s 200m Back – Semifinal
Men’s 200m IM – Final
Women’s 100m Free – Final
Men’s 100m Fly – Semifinal
FRIDAY, AUG 12TH
Women’s 200m Back – Final
Men’s 100m Fly – Final
Women’s 800m Free – Final
Men’s 50m Free – Final
Women’s 50m Free – Semifinal
SATURDAY, AUG 13TH
Women’s 50m Free – Final
Men’s 1500m Free – Final
Women’s 4 x 100m Medley Relay – Final
Men’s 4 x 100m Medley Relay – Final
OPEN WATER
Women - 15th
Men - 16th  

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Yearly Physical



I try to put off my yearly physicals by at least a year ... making them bi-yearly ??  But, the last time I went to the dentist I was denied ... because my blood pressure was too high.  Part of that was because I WAS at the dentist, but mostly because I had stopped taking my blood pressure medicine.  My favorite doctor had left our practice (she had small kids, so works now in an Urgent Care twice a week) so I didn't want to go through with meeting a new doctor, so I didn't bother.

Anyway, got new scripts for bloodwork, and my meds, and she thought she'd convinced me to get a mammogram (she printed it out.... doubtful I'll go) and I flatly refused a colonoscopy.  But, it's a starting point.  Maybe as I get healthier again, I'll consider doing the mammogram, but the colonoscopy will probably remain a no.  She did say there is a new company that tests your bowel movements (you send them a sample through the mail....) I may consider that, in another 5 years LOL

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

SUMMER SQUASH AND BANANA CAKE RECIPE

My review -- AMAZING *****  5 stars


Of course, I added chocolate chips, not many, and I used extra grated squash, so that I had enough to fill one 8" pan and one 9" pan.  It was really good and really moist and tasted like a banana cake, you wouldn't have known there was squash in there.  I will be making this again, and often if the squash keep coming like they have been !  The icing is plenty to ice two layers -- even had enough to do the sides had I wanted to stack this into a double layer cake.  


INGREDIENTS

  • For the summer squash and banana cake
  •  Butter, for the pan
  • 2 cups (255 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups (330 grams) packed light brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup (180 milliliters) mild vegetable oil, such as grape seed or light olive oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (100 grams) finely grated yellow squash (from about 1 large summer squash)
  • 2 large ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 cup or 10 1/2 ounces)
  • For the cream cheese frosting
  • One 8-ounce (226-gram) package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces/55 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (100 grams) confectioners’ sugar

DIRECTIONS

  • Make the summer squash and banana cake
  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Butter a 9- or 10-inch round cake pan.
  • 2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
  • 3. In a large bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Stir in the squash and bananas. Add the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
  • 4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 45 to 60 minutes. Turn the cake out onto a wire rack and let it cool completely, about 3 hours.
  • Make the cream cheese frosting
  • 5. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and butter until fluffy and smooth, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and confectioners’ sugar and beat to combine.
  • Assemble the cake
  • 6. Spread the frosting on top of the cake and, if desired, also coat the sides.


Recipe from http://leitesculinaria.com/