Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Chicken...Artichoke and Spinach ? ...I'm In.


Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 to 6 chicken pieces (thighs, chicken breast, legs, etc...)
  • salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 can (14-ounces) quartered artichokes, rinsed and drained
  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large carrot, sliced into thin rounds
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 bag (6 to 8 ounces) baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
Instructions
  • Preheat oven to 425.
  • Heat butter and olive oil in a large nonstick skillet that's safe for stovetop and oven.
  • Season chicken with salt and pepper.
  • Add to skillet and brown on both sides; about 5 minutes on each side.
  • Remove from skillet and set it on the side, leaving oil in skillet.
  • Add artichokes, onions, carrots and garlic to the skillet.
  • Cook for 5 minutes, or until vegetables are slightly tender, stirring occasionally,.
  • Add chopped garlic and spinach; continue to cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove from heat and add broth and chicken.
  • Place in the oven and bake for 18 minutes, or until chicken is thoroughly cooked.
  • Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes.
  • Plate and ladle liquid and veggies over chicken pieces.
  • Serve.
Notes
If you don't have a skillet that's safe for both oven and stovetop, you can place the chicken in a casserole-dish when you're ready to pop it in the oven.
I found this at Pinterest on a board, I think it was dierhood.com..check it out.
So making this .

Ciao,
Aunty Pol

I Can't Be The Only One That Does This .



Guilty as charged.


Ciao,
Aunty Pol

It's Never As Easy As Is Seems




Yes...I am alive.

Now that we have an actual cold spell..yes....even down here in the Gulf Coast, we can get cold...

Nailed it !

Anyhoo, for the better part of ALL friggan spring/summer I have waged a losing battle against allergies and sinus crap.

And by that I mean it got to the point that I slept all the way home after work when I could make it in and then after cleaning face/dentures, I crashed...out for the count...all night.

At least 3 out of 5 work days were spent like this, ditto most weekends .

Nothing to be done except stock up on Zyrtec , Puffs, and plow through it .

Therefore, I am not exactly unhappy about the cold snap save that ..umm.....pantyhose ?


OH HELL !


It was all I could do to keep up with the house and food, forget baking or foraging for recipes to torture Lady Lisa with.


And so I am hopeful this is all on its way to being over till it ain't.


I guess when I have been so sick for so long the brain gets all antsy.


I did manage to get to the opening weekend for Ren Fest and I did snag the posters for me and PG . I will get them out to her and I hope she is not mad at me for the delay. Personally I think she's way too cool for that so I am trying not to fret about it.

So I've started the Christmas shopping.

<  Ducks Head >


On Line.

As usual.


We are giving a ride to / from work to one of Gordon's co-workers for the next 6 months ( not my story to tell ) and yeah for me I am more used to shopping on line so there is that much less to fret over.

I'm a fretter.

Is that a word ?

I fret over the dumbest stuff.

Our  passenger says that he is off next week so there is stuff I need to bang out.

Sams Club renewal , some bricks and mortar stuff...while I hate to run errands after work, but if passenger won't need us....oh hell..let's call him Mo..Mo has a family and needs to get home to wife and 3 kids asap after work and I honestly understand. He's a really good dad so I am trying to get all the shit I need done while I can, with out making him any later to get home.


At least I can string some words together again.


Stay warm.


Ciao,
Aunty Pol

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Monday, October 20, 2014

Oh Dear....








It's gonna be one of those wretched, awful weeks.

The photo by the way is merely representational of Miss Ricie.

Yeah, my lil suicide blonde is going downhill fast.

When ever I see her, I think of the INXS song.

She is 16 and a half, with cataracts, dementia, and a host of health problems yet her heart lungs etc etc are fine.

Last Friday, Jere Lee and I sat out at the Ice House and I knew something was up . Privately I had been observing Ricie , for example when the gals are out and I am reading out on the  deck which is almost every night . Sometimes she will come out and do her thing and then get lost and confused because she can't see or hear if anyone is around. So Gracie and I get up and walk over and take her back in . Generally I sit with her and we chat. then when I see that she is comfy I go home.,more often than not , Gracie remains behind and they hang out. I could see that all was not well but I knew that her Mama was on top of it as she always is .

She's not eating and dehydrated so off to Dr. Tom she went. He has been her vet since her birth and Jere and he have discussed her progress. She has an appt this coming Saturday and it will probably be her last . Right now she is as comfy as she can be and as long as she is not in pain...yeah .


Bless the gals, they have been there for us as we went through this ourselves over the 11 1/2 years that we have been next door neighbors. We have babysat and done all the things one might do with a human child ...babysitting, picking up food /meds...hanging out ..Hell..the two that are left...Quintin and Ricie...they think that out back yard is theirs and it is...they hang out with Gracie and don't understand that she is not a dog, 

As they have done for us, we will be there for whatever they need.


AND this still sucks.

 A very sad Aunty Pol  .

Friday, October 10, 2014

Happy Friday ~ Bruce Of The Day ~ !



Can the bloody weather make up it's mind ?

Perhaps.

Perhaps not .


This is the most frustrating time of the year for me . All of the blogs that I follow and a veritable shit load of the pins that I see on Pinterest ( yes, guilty as charged. If you know my real name, you've seen my boards,l including the newest..Texts From Mittens..friggan hilarious.) are in the autumn mode. Which is my favorite season..but....

It's 90 FRIGGAN DEGREES DOWN HERE .

90

Ninety

Nine Zero.


Oh my akin gump.

Kill me now .

Part of me wants to make Swiss Steak , Pot Roast, French Onion soup. You know, cooler weather, stick to your ribs and ass carb coma food.

The other part is " Oh F dat.." . Do you really want to heat up the house that much ?

Yet another part is freaked out that it is mid October already . I guess that since I was so sick for 2 weeks, the kind where you come home from work and crash for 2 hours if you make it to work at all that you lose all sense of time .

The right part of my brain screams order the Christmas cards from M.D Anderson Children's Art Project now ..a very cool deal by the way where the kids design the art for the cards and the proceeds go back to the Hospital to help them,...and the left side of my brain replies..Chill the f out already.

Guess which one is loudest.

Nor does it help that the new Kroger has beautiful petunias in pots on display in front of the store and I have empty pots...the weather is almost perfect so I am tempted ( hint honey...I buy....you fly ..) ...and plants are still blooming  and  we actually have till Rodeo/Mardi Gras before it gets wet and rainy..except we did have those days in the 30's in January...still tempted...

See...I'm neither fish nor fowl right now . The Casa needs tidivation since that fell to the wayside but we are  going to see Real tomorrow..and hisself has a 2 day tourney next weekend and I need to touch base with Southside so he doesn't act like a 12 year old girl again and I owe him a birthday lunch /meal...

GAH !

I'll order the cards next week, get my skivies done this weekend...but tonight is deck time for me and Gracie because I have the  new Mercedes Lackey Valdemar book..

Yeah me.

Have a great weekend.

Ciao,
Aunty Pol

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

" Brother Had A Coconut, He Bought It For A Dime.."

 




Mwahaha..it's been a while so I thought since the weather was in theory going to change..( yeah..I don't believe it either, ) that it was high time I throw out/post a fat bomb.

I guess I am really feeling better because I have a Jones to bake something....and I can't get coconut cake out of my head ....so enjoy.



Southern Coconut Cake:

Oven temp : 350 degrees
Bake time : 30 minutes


Butter Cake :

3 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
1 cup softened butter ( 2 sticks)
2 cups sugar
4 eggs , room temperature
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla


Frosting:

2 sticks butter , softened ( yes...2 more )
8 cups powdered sugar
1 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon coconut extract or coconut rum
1-14 ounce bag coconut flake, unsweetened


Instructions:

Cake:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Prepare 3 9-inch cake pans with shortening and flour
3. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt with a whisk in a large bowl, set aside .
4. Cream butter until fluffy and then add sugar. Cream together for aprox 8 more minutes.
5. Add eggs, one at a time and cream together after each.
6. Add flour mixture and buttermilk alternately, beginning and  ending with the flour. Combine each addition of flour and then turn mixer on high to add air to the batter.
7.Add vanilla and beat well. Turn mixer to high again for about 10 seconds once the vanilla has been incorporated to lighten the batter.
8 . Divide batter among pans and bake for 25  to 30 minutes until set.
9. Turn out of pans onto cooling racks and cool completely.


Frosting:

1. Whip butter until light and fluffy.
2.Slowly add sugar beating well after each addition.
3. When all the sugar has been incorporated and looks like crumbles, set mixer to low speed and add milk then beat on high for a few minutes .
4. Add vanilla and coconut flavoring and beat on high until the frosting reaches a spreading consistency. If too dry, add a few drops of milk, if too wet add small amounts of powdered sugar until the desired consistency is achieved.

Frost cake and sprinkle coconut over the top and sides.

NOTE: This is one of those cakes where you really DO need to do a crumb coat.


Enjoy,

Aunty Pol



Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Small Wonders On The Way To Wellness...aka I Actually Broke Out The Swiffer This Weekend.




I got to feeling better this past weekend ( yes..that really is how we occasionally talk here in the South ) after nails and getting a facial so when he played golf on Sunday  , I actually broke out the swiffer thingy and dusted some of the shelves where the Pocket Dragons live. Nothing insane or death defying since it had been a while but good to semi tackle none the less.

If I have to crawl, I am going this Saturday. Yes, it is the opening weekend and something I generally avoid like the plague or balancing my checkbook , but this is a very special exception.

You see that good looking fella above ?

That my dears is Real Musgrave.

Quit acting like baby owls..."Who...who...who..". is Aunty Pol blathering on about now  ?

Set your wayback machine back about 40 years...or google Texas Renaissance Festival or Pocket Dragons. The hopeful results will show you Real's work in print and figurine. I went to Ren Fest for the  first time in 1984 or 1985..I've had sleep since then...and I fell in absolute undying love with his work. It was both whimsical and refined in a way that I hadn't seen before. Rather than being cartoonish which I have nothing against ( devoted Pinky and The Brain fan here ) , there is a grace and a gentleness to his work that drew me in. I had no idea that he also had figurines until I actually talked to him and found out that I could buy them easily.  I miss Ashley Avery...dammit !

I have never been a collector of anything except possibly bad Karma but I bought some of his prints and cards every time I went back to the Festival and before I knew it , I had a small stash .

Sadly, due to health issues , Real had to retire to the hill country with his wife but I continued to collect as much as I could. After I married hisself, I explained that this was one of the few things that I collected and so for birthday/anniversary/Christmas/the hell of it I received large and small pieces. I quit counting the figurines a long time ago and one of my most treasured Christmas gifts is the signed by Real  poster that Hisself found one year rolled up in a tube. he had it matted and professionally framed for me and it hangs proudly at the end of the hallway.

Hisself  gets e mail alerts from the Ren Fest since he buys tickets on line...and the Angels sang.

This year is the 40'th anniversary of the Festival and Real is going to be there hopefully signing the commemorative posters. Hell , I don't care if they are pre-signed . Bless his heart, he might not be actually able to do that much, so PG..I can 't promise a personalized one but I'm getting one for you as promised......nuff said.

For me , this is like meeting Janis Joplin.

Yeah, that huge.

The Unabashed Fan Girl,
Aunty Pol

The Nerve Of Them.






Damn you TNT !

Who am I going to mock now ?


You had to cancel " Dallas".
Figures after y'all let Christopher get his ass all blown to smithereens.

Pffffffft !

Ciao,
Aunty Pol

Friday, October 03, 2014

The Games Afoot..So to Speak.

Savage Chickens Comic Strip on GoComics.com



Oh , I laughed my ass off when I saw this .



I have been a huge Holmes fan all my life.  I had two gals that I ran with ( sort of ..they detested each other..I was the hamster in the middle part of the wheel , just hanging on for dear life ). Kathy St Lawrence of course was " Holmes" by virtue of the fact that she was older and thus more deserving ( at least in her pseudo sophisticated mind) , I was faithful Watson, not quite as bumbling as Nigel Bruce but loyal just the same and Cathy Long was Lestrade, earnest and unaware or uncaring of the occasional ridicule that Holmes lobbed her way. I wasn't a mean girl so to speak, I think I was oblivious to it all, and Cathy  with a C was too polite to called Kathy with a K out on her shit.



Anyhoo, years later I am still a huge Holmes fan and proudly would answer to Watson any time of day.



Do I keep up with the other two ?



Kathy with a K..not in over 40 years.



Cathy with a C...not as much as I should.



My bad....she and I have known each other since we were 13...and she's hitting 60 this month.



Happy birthday dear , I'm thinking of you .







Ciao,



Watson.

Happy Friday ~ Bruce Of The Day ~ !



Well , since I can't go to Comic Con this weekend, ( relax dear, you know how  I am about crowds)..I thought I'd throw that card up there. Wah..not only is Bruce going to be there but also Christopher Judge from SG1 amongst others..it is what it is.

I will console myself with RENFEST next weekend, even if I have to crawl there. Yes, I am still fighting this allergy sinus crap..my nose will fall off at some point and of course it is the weekend where it is the perfect fake your ass our weather wise..low 50's , going only to mid 80's.

IN SOUTH TEXAS Y'ALL..........!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I kid you not.

It is what it is.

I haven't lost my mind with cooking or baking as of yet but that will come since the new issue of FOODNETWORK mag has quick breads as their featured " 50 Ways To Watch Your Ass Grow .." section. I pulled that bad boy out of the mag pdq and have it tucked away in my copy of the firm cookbook from 1991 .

Yep..we had a cookbook, which I still use..go firm.

I am by Gawd going to take a beverage out to the deck for at least a bit when I get home..I am tired of being cooped up or as much as one can be when you crash  completely at 8 pm..


Have a great weekend !

Ciao,
Aunty Pol