Sunday, July 31, 2011

blog #480 >> From my internet travels

Okay, here's a nice little blog post w/o any meat!
This is a swell little collection of cool links I've found online recently.

p.s. I should mention, I'm becoming increasingly addicted to pintrest. I think I even like it better than my google reader feed, and that's really saying something!

Here is a super cute kitchen found at Apartment Therapy.

Here is a dorky accordion kid, found at pintrest.
(Also, I find this advertisement slightly misleading. )

Amazing bedspread from Sewing Daisies. See how she made it!

I love Nutella too! From Chibird.

Adorable book couple. I tired to track down the original link, but it turned up blank on etsy. See it at pintrest here.

Tea is indeed refreshing! Found at pintrest here and at this beautiful tumbler page named the oxford circus.

The perfect "welcome" mat for less then welcome guests. Like those crazy poll takers.
Found here at ffffound.
I love how they filled in the cracks, chinks and crevasses of their home with books as if they were spackle!
See it here at Pamela Love and Jordan Sullivan's home.

These two fancy fellows are from My Daguerreotype Boyfriend. I love this site!

And these strange floating people are from:

Edison's Anti-Gravity Underwear Kite Babies, 1879

JF Ptak Science Books Post 1562 [Part of a series on the History of the Future]

There was a time in the late 19th century when it was seen that Thomas Edison could do just about anything--so much so that the Brits in The London Punch gave him tongue-in-cheek credit for inventing (flying, so to speak), anti-gravity underwear.
Read more about it here at Ptak Science Books.

And although I usually try to avoid the kitty internet craze, I just can't help it! These ones are just so funny! From Cats That Talk. Discovered here.

And as a bonus link, here's a fascinating story about The Vidocq Society.
Nineteen years ago three men had the idea of a regular lunch club for crime experts that would try to solve some of the United States' most baffling homicides. The Vidocq Society has now been instrumental in solving hundreds of crimes. Adam Higginbotham meets the founding members.
I suppose I find this so interesting because I've recently been reading lots of Agatha Christie's Miss Marple novels lately.

Find the complete story here at The Telegraph. Well worth a read.

Okay, time to go be productive now...

blog #479 >> Bacon!

(Image from Plan 59)

I did not intend to write a bacon post today. But it was meant to be. This morning I woke up and went to bacon heaven! There are several reasons why I will never be a vegetarian. Steak is reason #1 and bacon is reason #2. You see when you grow up raising your own livestock for meat, (we raised turkeys) there's never any shock about what you're actually eating. You're very close to your food, and that's okay. You become used to the fact that animals are edible, and not only edible, but quite delicious as well.

Here we have Chester and Bacon. A few months ago my brother and sister-in-law raised a couple of pigs and I bought 1/6 of a share. Now the pork is ready and my little freezer is full to the brim with meat. I have pork chops, pork shoulder steaks, ham hocks, bacon, and all kinds of pork!

This morning I tried the bacon for the first time, and WOW! It's some of the best bacon I've ever had! With its brown sugar glaze, this thick sliced bacon is like eating a smoky, bacon-y steak. Chester turned into some fine pork!

(bacon cookbook recipes here.)
(image found here.)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

blog #478 >> A Really Big Tongue

This weekend I embarked on a culinary adventure. I tried cooking tongue aka lengua.

I recently got "Grandma's Wartime Kitchen" from the library, and it ended up being a really fascinating book. I've enjoyed it quite a bit. Not all of its recipes are practical for today (most are), but it does have authentic recipes which are really interesting. I love reading the comments and introductions they give for each section. It talks about the rationing and the meat shortages during WWII and that everyone ate lots of beef livers, hearts and tongues. (It also has... a recipe of sugarless cake, and butterless butter.) Anyhow, I wanted to try a couple of the recipes, and the more research I did about tongue, the better and better it sounded. I knew Saturday would be my only chance for awhile to get out to White's Country Meats, so I picked one up.

The first thing I thought when I saw that tongue was, "Whoa! That thing is HUGE!" I had no idea beef tongues were that large! It's 13" long! That's going to make a lot of taco filling, sandwich filling, etc. etc. etc. which is good, because I'm still not sure what I'm going to make with it. I think I'm going to try several different things. Today, I made tongue tacos. Here are some of the recipes I've been looking at. I love reading the comments.
Beef Tacos de Lengua at Simply Recipes
Tongue and Mustard Sandwiches at All Recipes
Tacos de Lengua by the Hungry Texan
Boiled Tongue at All Recipes

For my tacos I kept it really simple. I just fried the cubed tongue with a little butter with taco seasoning and served it with grated cheese and greens. It turned out remarkably delicious! It tastes a lot like roast, a really tender roast.

After washing and scrubbing the tongue.

Boiling the tongue for 4 hours with onion, garlic, celery, bay leaves, pepper corns, salt, and spices.

Pealing the tongue.

Chopping the tongue.

The final product! Tongue tacos!

blog #477 >> Down by the Creek

Yesterday, I finally remembered my camera when I went to the creek! So, I took a LOT of pictures to make up for the lost times. It was such a nice relaxing evening. I took a chair down to the water and just sat and read while dinner cooked on the wood stove. It was really hard to come back home. It was so tempting to just spend the night. The tent is set up for the summer, and I had a trunk full of clean laundry and groceries. But now I'm glad I came home since it has rained all day today.

Here are the black berries, they're just starting to flower.

And I discovered four huckleberry plants that I am very excited about. I bet I can find more, but I didn't want to go tromping into the underbrush. There are lots of stinging nettles out there as well as huckleberries, and I didn't want to get into those. But the plants are much easier to find now while the berries are still red before they turn to blue.

And I learned these are called salmonberries. I read that they're edible, but I haven't tried any yet. Plus, there's not very many of them.

And I discovered these are wild cucumbers. They are not edible, as this brave blogger learned. But they are so strange! They don't look like anything that would belong out in the woods. They climb up the branches of the cedar trees and look more like an alien invasion, than a wild plant.

And here's an old saw blade that washed in. It's probably remnants of the logging community that was here around the turn of the century.

And here's my dinner cooking and the tent all set up. It's just waiting for me to go camping.

And finally the little snail.

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And as a bonus post, I have the owl cross-stitch I made for my wall. I still think he looks a little like a penguin, but I like him.

blog #476 >> The Garden Grows

I realized I hadn't done a good ol' garden post in awhile. So just to keep everyone updated... it's growing. Not as quickly as I had hoped, but I think it will make it never the less. It's just been such a wet and cold summer! I'm amazed it's doing as well as it is! The only thing I think will be a complete flop is the corn. Knee high by 4th of July? It wasn't even close! And now that the bunnies have moved on and quit eating the peas and beans, they might just make it. There's only one purple pole bean plant left. I'm still hoping for a beautiful fall.

Here's the eggplant on my front porch. It's doing pretty good. So are the ones in the garden.

The corn rows.

The potato rows. The potatoes are doing great, I think we'll have a good crop of potatoes. My dad has built a smoke/drying house. We're going to experiment with drying potatoes for soups and potato flour.

The spinach actually did pretty well. Not every variety made it, the "Bloomingdales Long Withstanding" went straight to seed without ever getting big. But the "Mustard Spinach" variety did great. (Actually, I think "Mustard Spinach" is a type of mustard not a type of spinach, but it tastes just like spinach. I'm actually still a little confused on the subject.)

The zucchini is one thing I can always count on to do fantastic!

And now that the bunnies have stopped devouring peas by night, we might just get a few of them as well. (peas not bunnies)

And the radishes are doing beautifully. I love these "Sparkler White Tips."

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And for a bonus post here's a picture of one of my all time favorite cookies: Salted Butterscotch Cookies made with browned butter... mmmmm... I think I want one right now.