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Monday Musings: 02.27.2012 February 27, 2012

Posted by Toy Lady in Food, random stuff.


Saturday was a long, LONG day around here!  I started out (after walking the dog, of course) by taking Peeps’s mom to the public market, and I did fairly well there.  Since Mom doesn’t have her car here yet, I’ve been trying to use Saturdays as kind of “field trip day” – I’ll take her shopping, then we go and do whatever else she needs to take care of, or maybe I’ll take her somewhere that’s just cool.

Well.  This week, on the way home from the public market, we made a stop at Wal-mart for a few things, then we ran across town to go to one of my favorite places ever – Mostly Clay.  Fortunately, their ONE annual sale is still going on, which is really the only time I can afford to walk in that place!  I found the most adorable urn (I guess that’s what you’d call it?)  – the inside of the lid even coordinates with the vase!

We stopped at a crepe shop and had a bit of a snack (shopping takes a lot out of a person!), then we had to explore a new yarn shop next door to the pottery shop.  I reminded myself (several times) that I’ve got three projects going, plus another pair of socks waiting to be done, plus several balls of miscellaneous, undesignated yarn.  I just kept my hands in my pockets the whole time I was there.

And then I took Mom grocery shopping – she was evidently out of half-and-half and had to drink her coffee (gasp!) black that morning!

And finally, about eight hours after I’d left the house, I came home and collapsed!


Remember how, last weekend, we did the work in the shower?

Part of that was removing the shower doors.

Fortunately our trash day is Monday, so we put our trash out Sunday evenings.

Imagine Peeps’s surprise when, no sooner had he put the second shower door out, a friendly-looking old guy stopped, picked up first one, then the other, shower door and loaded them into the trunk of his old-guy car, then he came back and picked up the tracks for them.


I’ll admit – I’ve always hated those shower doors. . .



We tossed together a corn chowder for later in the week, and it was only when it was just about done that I realized that I hadn’t taken a single photo – probably because it was so easy-peasy.

Stir a box of Jiffy corn muffin mix into 3 cups of milk (I used 1%) and set aside.  (And about the Jiffy mix – I know – but it was on sale cheaper than I could make it, so I’m gonna pass that by?)

Then, in a Dutch oven (or whatever you make your soups and stews in) cook about 5 – 6 slices of bacon (I’d guess about 1/4 of a pound) that you’ve cut into 1/2-inch pieces.  When the bacon is nicely done, drain all but about a tablespoon of the bacon grease off, then add a single onion, chopped finely.  When that’s softened, add 3- 4 cloves of minced garlic, 1/2 tsp. ground cumin, 1/8 tsp. cayenne, and about a teaspoon of dried oregano, and stir until it’s fragrant – about 30 seconds.

Toss in about half a dozen potatoes (or even sweet potatoes) that have been peeled and diced into 1/2-inch pieces, stir them up, then add about 6 cups of chicken stock (unless you’re fortunate enough to have corn stock on hand – then use that FOR SURE!) and simmer until the potatoes are done (8-10 minutes, depending on the size of your potato dice).

Stir in the milk/Jiffy mix mixture,  and once it’s thickened, add 2-3 cups of corn, and you’re set.  (If your corn is frozen, of COURSE give it a chance to get hot!)  Sprinkle each bowl with a handful of shredded cheese and enjoy.

See how easy that was?



And once again, it’s time for the weekly menu plan.  This is the week that things at the office start getting ridiculously crazy – until it all stops around the middle of May.  Which is good, because THAT is when things normally start getting busy. . . so we’re working very hard to keep the weeknights as low-stress as we can – and doing as much ahead as we can . . . and still trying to use as much from the freezer and pantry as we can.

Monday – We’re experimenting!  We used pork and sour cherries for a slow-braised stew kind of loosely based on this Belgian Beef Stew from Cook’s Illustrated – the original was fan-freaking-tastic, and this pork and fruit version looks mighty promising, as well!

Tuesday – I don’t know, maybe I was feeling creative this weekend – we’ve also tweeked this roasted garlic soup recipe – the addition of roasted chicken and cannelini beans will make this an especially hearty meal.

Wednesday – Since the Boy is home Wednesdays now, we thought it would be nice to try something he’s likely to enjoy being home for – and who doesn’t love short ribs?  We’re very happy with the other recipe we’ve made from this chef, so I’m feeling mighty confident this time, too.

Thursday – Somehow, a jar of corn stock was accidentally opened last week – I think it was mistaken for chicken stock – so obviously, we had to use it, right?  And where better to use it than in corn chowder?  Thick and corny, with just a bit of smoky bacon and cheese – it’ll be great to have on an evening when I’ll undoubtedly be late home from work!

Friday – I actually enjoyed Buffalo pizza again for last week’s  pizza night – this week, I think I’ll be going back to my more normal olive oil-ricotta -mozzarella topped pie.

Be sure to click on over to The Organizing Junkie’s Monday Menu Plan post for loads and loads of other ideas.


How about something new?

You’ve read this far – thank you! – so tell me, what would you like us to tell you about?  We’ve got a lot of good stuff up for this week, and I’d like to know what you want us to show you, so do me a favor, and tell me what sounds best to you.

Thanks, and be sure to check back Friday and see what the voters chose!





1. sjbraun - February 27, 2012

What fun to read about your week 🙂 I bet MIL feels like she’s died and gone to heaven with the fun Saturdays you treat her too – that’s awesome! Your ceramic piece is very pretty. Funny about the shower doors — will the guy re-sell them, or is this a hoarder?? Hmmm …
The corn chowder looks yummy. Have a great week!

We were wondering about the guy, too. I mean, I don’t think there’s any “scrap metal” value there. . . I thought maybe he owned an apartment building and was going to use them there. 😕

I’ve been trying very hard, with The Mom, to show her that Rochester is a quite nice place to live – I know it’s difficult for her.

2. Julie Dellemonache - February 27, 2012

Love your recipes! The corn chowder sounds yummy. Have sweet corn in freezer from this summer…going to have to make this! I want to take off my shower doors too, I hate them so much. Thats on one of my to do list …one of these days! 🙂 Happy Monday to you!

Thanks, Julie – the corn chowder was so simple to toss together – and I’ve done it using sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes, too, which is also quite nice. 😀

I can’t TELL you how many times I’ve stubbed my toe on the track while stepping into the shower, then there’s trying to keep it clean, and the leaning over it to scrub the tub . . . good riddance, I say! 😆

3. Judy - February 28, 2012

The chowder looks wonderful! Still plenty of winter around to enjoy soup. I believe in recycling so I hope your doors are happy in their new space wherever that might be! Hope your week is not as nuts as you think it will be!

Thanks, Jude.

You know, one of the reasons we like this trash company is that they have Monday pickup – which allows us to put “stuff” out on Sunday afternoons, and it gives the “collectors” a chance to, well, collect. Often, in the summer, I see them on our morning walks on trash days.

4. mazco34 - February 28, 2012

I love big garbage day in our town. You put out all the stuff that you don’t want, but can’t fit into the can (like doors and old furniture).
Then shortly after dark, you’ll see the vehicles, slowing by every pile, looking for some “treasure.”
One day Cathy and I were sitting out front after cleaning out a pile of stuff from the basement and a truck pulls up with a couple inside. Man: “Anything?” Woman: “No, just garbage.” Man (at us): “Thanks for nothin’!” and pulls away.
We laughed for a few minutes at the ridiculous comment.
Some people, I’m just sayin’.

Heh – “Thanks for nothin”
“Hey, anytime.”

5. Judy - February 28, 2012

Here at the apartment complex a lot of people move out on weekends. The “can’t fit in the U-Haul” stuff is piled up by the big collection boxes. Our pickup day is Monday too but many times a lot of the stuff is gone by then. I think people must drive around here on weekends looking for U-Hauls and come back later to make a haul. It is like a game I think.

Heh – then they probably sell the furniture, or they donate it to GoodWill for the deduction!

6. And the winner is… « Dark Side of the Fridge - March 2, 2012

[…] votes are all in from Monday’s poll, and we have a winner.  Balsamic-glazed short […]

7. Monday Musings: 03.05.2012 Edition « Dark Side of the Fridge - March 5, 2012

[…] remember how a couple of weeks ago, we put the shower doors out with the trash, and literally within minutes, some guy had seen them, […]

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