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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mmmm, Roasted Salsa!

This year the garden has been a total bust. 
I don't know if the cool weather then the extremely hot weather had something to do with it?
But nevertheless, (I love to say that word, just rolls off the tongue.)
the harvest is mininmal.
With the harvest we have had, we made some roasted salsa.
We have made this for the last couple of years and it just keeps getting better.
Yummy flavor and all my favorite salsa qualities.
A little hot, a little sweet, a little give it a try!
Like the name says, it's roasted.
So first, place all the veggies, besides the tomatoes on a pan, with sides, for roasting.
The tomatoes get too juicy to roast with the rest.

Roast these for however long it takes for them to start browning, about 30-45 minutes in 350 degree oven.
We even roasted our own garlic this year.  We got two cloves from the garden. Wrap in foil, cover with olive oil, then place in 400 degree oven for, oh I don't know, maybe an hour?
I don't think it takes that long, but we went out to see the chickens and forgot about it and
that's how long it was in the oven. 
So, probably 30 minutes would have taken care of it.
We did this ahead of time, but you could throw the peeled garlic cloves
right in the pan with the other veggies.

Oh, how I love garlic!
We also smear this on toasted bread and dip in olive oil and herbs.
Roast the tomatoes in 450 degree oven for about 35 minutes.
Seriously, this is pretty much all the tomatoes we got from the garden. 
We have had a few straglers before and after, but this was the main crop. 
We usually have this 10 times over.
Keep roasting, things are starting to brown.
Shriveled, roasted and so yummy. 
Doesn't really look that good, but trust me, the taste makes up for the ugliness.
After everything is roasted, the skins have to be peeled.
For me this is very therapeutic and I get sort of obsessed about getting all the skin off.
Well, that's just me.
This is the best part.
Just blend it all together!
Really that's it!
Isn't it pretty?
I didn't get a shot of the cilantro being added, but just put a bunch in and blend.
Okay, so I know there are  those cilantro haters out there.
I don't understand you, but I know you are out there.
You do not have to put the cilantro in, but it really does make the salsa.
Just add some extra oregano or something.
Get the chips, somebody!

Roasted Salsa:
2 lbs ripe tomatoes
3 or 4 jalepenos
1 small onion sliced in half
6 garlic cloves
1/4 cup water
Salt, pepper and sugar to taste
1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro
2 or 3 sprigs of fresh oregano, or 1/2 t. dried

Roast tomatoes in a 450-degree oven until browned, about 35 minutes.
Roast jalapenos/onion/garlic separately from tomatoes in a 350-degree oven until browned, about 30-45 minutes.  Peel stems and skins from tomatoes and peppers.  Puree all ingredients together.  Add sugar, salt & pepper to taste.  Enjoy!

I give the recipe above, however, that does not mean we follow it.  In the pictures you can see we added more onions, and used purple ones even.  Also, we just throw in whatever peppers we are getting from the garden which happened to be some pablanos, so throw in what you like, it's okay!

Really the only challenging thing in the recipe is removing the skins from the peppers and tomatoes.  I just grab a pair of tongs and pick them off.  Actually, that step probably doesn't even have to be done, but that's how we like it.  In past years we made so much that we had some to put in the freezer and it was great.  Don't see that happening this year.

I love this magazine.
It has all kinds of product reviews and great recipes and fun ideas for your home.
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Check it out!

Friday, July 23, 2010

We Love Blue Cheese!

Daddio and 2hipchick love blue cheese.  Yes, I know it's stinky, 2groovydude has told me.  But it is so great, talk about flavor, it has it!  So, we have eaten lots of blue cheese. 
So here's Daddio's blue cheese dressing recipe.

One chunk blue cheese. 
(I want to spell this bleu, somewhere they spell it that way, right?)

Crumble it up.

Crumble some more.
Add more sour cream.
Stir, stir.
Eat, eat!

Blue Cheese Dressing Recipe:

One chunk blue cheese, about a cup crumbled, or 3 oz
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup real mayo
1 T. fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 chopped green onions
1 small garlic clove, pressed
1 T. rice wine vinegar
Seasoning salt and pepper, to taste

Daddio originally got this recipe from his mom, Jane.  Since then we have tweaked and modified and come up with the above or as close as we can document.  And Daddio never measures anything, you know the type. 
When I make it, I grate the lemon zest into the dressing also.  You can also put some chopped parsley, but I can never remember to buy it.
Use it for a dip or on a salad, yum!


I have been trying new recipes out of this new cookbook.
If you are a Food Network fan, you know Paula Deen and this cookbook is by her sons.
Great recipes.
You can get it at
or go to their site
I saw lots of the recipes from the book on there, plus more!
Check it out!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What?! More New Chicks!

Okay, so Daddio and 2hipchick lost a few chickies, as you read in the last post.
And Sylvia has become Sylvester and Pepper,
well, can still be Pepper, but in rooster form.
I am so, not kidding!
They were both roosters.  We caught on when the crowing started.  Well, I was in denial for a couple of weeks, but I finally heard and saw it for myself and could not deny.
They have been transported to the country chicken ranch.
I hear that Sylvester has taken up with a guinea and Pepper sleeps under the porch.
Sounds like they are okay.
We will miss you,
Stupid Roosters!

After all that trauma, we had to get more.  You never want to run low on the chicks!
2Groovydude greeting the chicks...this is Scamp.
Here they are straight form the Post Office.  I still can't believe these little guys just get mailed off when they have only been hatched for a few hours. 
What a way to start life! 
They have even ridden on an airplane, which makes 2Groovydude very jealous...he hasn't done that!
The girls are not having a hard time keeping warm, since it has been in the mid 90's here since they arrived.  Believe or not, we still have to keep a heat lamp on at night to keep them warm enough.
They are just little babies, you know?
She has a diamond shape on  her head.
My grandma was named Rosie. 
Diamond and Rosie and very fast blurry chicks.
They make my photo shoots very frustrating.
Gracie...she's gray...get it?
Line for the water trough. 
 Obviously, Rosie and Diamond are the most interested in getting photographed.
Scamp steps up to the photo plate again.
This is Scout, she has an hour glass spot on her head...we are sure she must be the Dominique, because we remember that with the last chicks.
Gracie has Cleopatra eyes.  It looks like she went a little wild with the eyeliner.
Racoon?  Maybe?
Rosie, baby!
Chicken dance! 
Everybody shake those tailfeathers!
With all the chick excitement, 2Groovydude and Ruby would just like you to know that they are still around and have some new photos on their pages. 
Here's a little preview. 
Check it out!  They are feeling left out.

2Groovydude's Lego warehouse owned by Patrick and Sponge Bob.
Ruby in the "Rub my belly" pose. 
Sometimes she just sleeps like this, in case someone walks by and would like to oblige.
What cutie pies!


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I llike that lip stuff, too.
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Monday, July 5, 2010


Now, let's talk about all the things I "didn't" know about chicks.
Or more like all the things that want to get my chicks.
I'm sorry to say that we have lost a couple of chicks to a big bad old owl.
Mean old owl, find your food some where else!
First, Cola just went missing...we never knew what happened.
Then my niece, Hil, saw the owl swoop down and get fluffy.
On the way down to check things out, Hil ran into the snake that has been hanging around the chicken pen.
(I was on the phone with Hil, who was house sitting, and she screamed, real loud!)
There's just all kinds of crazy things going on around the henhouse, I'm telling you.
We have put up a netting over our little babies to protect them from the owl.
Has the snake just been around and knows that there will be eggs for him to steal?
And so far no eggs, (they should be old enough to lay eggs sometime in Sept/Oct)
So, Mr. snake protection will have to come later.

So on to the update of the chicks still in attendance.

Pepper has grown a comb and waddle.
Daddio swears he heard cock-a-doodle-do.
2hipchick has not heard this and thinks Daddio may be losing it.
I hope Dominiques just grow these quicker than other breeds.
Pepper, we can't have roosters!
I looked up pics and I think "she" is still in.
My Cluck!  She runs to see me when I go outside!
I love her.
She hops up in my lap when we are chick watching.
(We have chairs by the henhouse and sit and watch the chicks every evening.)
Yes, we are easily entertained.
Buffy, she's not smart. 
Okay, I know that is not nice to say, but she can barely find her way around the chicken pen.
The Rhode Island Reds, Ginger and Biscuit.
Fast and difficult to photograph.
Brownie.  I have renamed her Caramel Brownie.
Sylvia's sis.
Chuckles.  Cluck's sidekick...they are a pair.
And of course, Sylvia.  She still poses for me and is all attitude.
Sylvia is growing pretty blue feathers on her tail.
She's so cool!

Even Daddio gets some chick attention.  This is Chuckles having a little talk.
One evening five of the chicks (not all at the same time) hopped up in Daddio's lap to discuss chick issues.
It was so cute.
Did I have my camera?
Of course not.

Special chicks, get special treatment.
Daddio put up an outside roost for the chickadees.
They like it.
So, a few casualties, but still going strong.
Disappearing chicks?
Eggs in September?
Maybe a rooster?
Chickens are like a box of chocolates, you never know what your gonna get.

I love this skirt!
Check out the New Arrivals!
I find all my favorite clothes here and they really mark down the off season styles.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Fun Times at Baytowne Wharf, Florida

Okay, this is the last of the Florida adventure.  Boo-hoo.
We just really had a great time this year.
One evening we drove out to the Baytowne Wharf.
It is like another country...but not like Texas.
(Remember that ad campaign?  What were they trying to say?)
Anyway, the place it so cute, cozy and quaint and I can't think of any more appropriate adjectives,
but you get the idea. 
My pics are a little on the dark side, but I was playing with camera settings
and you get what you get.
Lots of shops and restaurants and brick paved walk-ways, no cars, pedestrian only.
Just strolling around and checking things out.
We ate at the Acme Oyster Co. 
It was tasty and offered my favorite sweet potato fries, so I was happy.
And Coffee & Donuts down the street...what more could you want?
I don't know if this is a real water tower?  But why not?
It has lights, I never would have thought of that.  Cute.
There were music places to add to the festive atmosphere.
It is just different from what we see at home.
That's what vacation is all about.
There were lots of kid attractions also, bungee jump, carousel, and this contraption below.
It was like an obstacle course, a very high obstacle course.
You were attached to a cable-track and had to make your way through to a spot and ring a bell.
Looked scary to me.  None of my family took the challenge.
Look!  It's my children, up a tree!
2Groovydude, Lulu, and Cole.
How cute!
What a cool tree house!
I want this in my back yard.
Daddio could do it, but will he?
And, oh yeah! The giant chair, (or tiny children?) fun pics.

Baytowne Wharf is bustling, fancy and fun, with good food and lots to see.

So go check it out, if you are ever close by.

Coming soon a blog about other favorite drink and flavoring.
I haven't given it any space on my blog!
It is just shocking, because I do love it sooo much.