Friday, May 24, 2024

Friday Food: Fish, Fowl, and Neither


Short version: Barbecue bull sandwiches, roasted potatoes, carrot sticks with curry dip

Long version: This entire meal came about because I was making bread and decided to use some of the dough to make buns. Then I needed something to put in the buns. So I used some of the pressure-cooked bull meat--further broken down with my immersion blender--mixed with barbecue sauce.

I still have a couple of bottles of Dinosaur BBQ's Sensuous Slathering Sauce (worst name, best sauce) that should last me until A. gets to New York again to get me some more.

And then I needed something to bulk this meal up a bit, so potatoes.

Carrot sticks just because they're easy and everyone eats them. Ditto the curry dip.

The curry dip is literally just mayonnaise and sweet yellow curry powder, and is delicious with the potatoes, too.

The littlest eater's meal, on a plate that was A.'s brother's almost forty years ago.


Short version: Tamales

Long version: My sister brought a few packages of pork tamales with her when she came to visit. Store-bought tamales are always too spicy for me and Poppy (which is the whole reason I started making my own), but we can eat them with a lot of sour cream. And everyone else was very happy with them. Thanks, sis!


Short version: Elk in tomato gravy, mashed potatoes, green salad with vinaigrette, ice cream

Long version: I excavated one last bag of elk stew meat from the bottom of one of the chest freezers. It's too hot for actual stew, but I still needed to stew the meat to make it tender. So I cut it up a little smaller, browned it in beef tallow, and simmered it for awhile with the last of a container of beef stock that need to be used, the last tablespoon of tomato paste left from making the shepherd's pies, a whole diced onion, a few new garlic plants that had been hanging out in the refrigerator, and a lot of parsley. When the meat was tender, I added the last of the whipping cream that had been shaken so much it was almost butter.

Very tasty. And satisfying to use up all those random things.

I served it over mashed potatoes for those who like to mix their food. And next to the mashed potatoes for those who don't.


Short version: Lotta leftovers, cucumbers, cookies

Long version: Two kids had the elk and mashed potatoes. One had crepes left over from the after-church second breakfast. One had a barbecue bull sandwich. A. had barbecue bull and mashed potatoes.

I would typically have had a salad with some of the bull meat in it, but I was starting to feel the effects of the cold that had been going around the family since Friday. Salads are just no fun to eat with a sore throat. So instead, I had some of the elk and mashed potatoes, too. Comfort food.


Short version: Fish, rice, raw produce, bread and butter

Long version: A. bought some whiting fillets last time we were at the store, and he cooked those this night. He baked them in a sauce of olive oil, garlic, and lemon juice. The sauce was tasty, although the fish got a bit mushy in spots.

I am told that the sauce was particularly good on the rice.

The children helped themselves to the bread and butter after dinner. I guess that was dessert.


Short version: Chicken stir-fry, rice

Long version: I had broccoli and bell peppers that really needed to be used, so I took out a package of chicken breasts to make stir-fry. It also had asparagus and lamb's quarter from the garden, and onion, carrot, and garlic not from the garden.

I did not take a picture of the stir-fry this time. How unusual for me.


Short version: Fish, lamb, leftover rice, frozen peas, peanut butter cups

Long version: There was quite a bit of the sauce left from the fish, and also two fillets still frozen, so I fried those fillets in butter--which fixed the mushiness issue--and used the sauce for that. 

That would definitely not have been enough for everyone, and everyone doesn't really like fish anyway, so I also took out some lamb steaks. I fried two of those in bacon grease.

Everyone had the frozen peas and rice.

The peanut butter cups were our countdown candy for this year, but I still had quite a few in the bag when school ended. So everyone got to have three of them instead of just one while we were on our way out to the bus in the morning. Because everything is better in the summer.

Refrigerator check:

I like it when there are lots of leftovers.

Okay, your turn! What'd you eat this week?

Tuesday, May 21, 2024

A Western Road Trip

I'm a little delayed posting this, but a couple of weeks ago, A. and I took the old Honda Pilot to the scrapyard.

It really was far enough gone that A. didn't want to try to sell it to anyone.

A. was a little leery of even driving it to the scrapyard, because that's 90 miles away. There was no other way to get it there, though, and I was very tired of having an extra car in the driveway, so A. aired up the tires and off we went.

For reasons of safety, we stayed off the freeway and instead went on the smaller roads. This way is slower, but extremely scenic.

It's open range for about 30 miles, which means . . .

A bull on the road. The bulls are much slower to get off the road than the cows or the calves. The bulls are not impressed by your vehicle and want you to know it.

Next, down into canyon country.

Then up onto the llano estacado.

Scrapyards are always interesting places, with colorful people working at them. This one was no exception. The office was small and crowded with items of interest that the guys working there wanted to save from the crusher.

Just kind of thrown up onto these random shelves.

I mean, who could part with those bronze storks, right? 

And then it was back into my shiny new Honda to go to Walmart and spend all the money we just got for the old Honda.

We took the freeway home. It was faster, but not as interesting.

Sunday, May 19, 2024

Snapshots: Some Old, Some New

Since I publish the Snapshots posts early in the morning, I didn't have any photos from Mother's Day last Sunday.

It was very low-key, which is how I prefer my days to be. I didn't do any dishes or feed any children. That counts as a holiday for me.

In the afternoon, we had a little cheese party with the Brie and Parmesan left by my parents.

I put out the Brie first. I wasn't sure anyone but A. would eat it.

But then everyone tried it . . .

And it was gone within five minutes. So then I put out some Parmesan.

That disappeared even faster.

Buncha Cheeseheads in this house, for sure. Must be my dad the Wisconsin native's genetics.

Incidentally, do you like the fancy cheese plate? That's actually one of the saucers from my grandmother's china. My sister has the whole set, but never used the tea cups and saucers, so she asked if I would like them.

We do like our tea parties here, so now I have twelve fancy tea cups and saucers for our next party. And in the meantime, the saucers make lovely little plates for special-occasion cheese.

A. took the children on a horse ride on Mother's Day, and one of the children came running back to the house with a bunch of wildflowers for me that he found in the pastures.

Superior to Teleflora in every way.

And some slightly more recent photos . . .

One of the children got a giant plastic Slinky in his end-of-year classroom auction. This was so coveted by another child that she used some of her Christmas Amazon gift card to buy her own.

Slinkys (Slinkies?), of course, function best on stairs. Our house doesn't have more than two steps in any place. Nothing daunted, my children proceeded to set up their own Slinky steps.

Top bunk to Lincoln Log tin to drum to chair to step stool to floor.

We have spent a lot of time untangling the Slinkys (Slinkies?), but that's par for the course for this particular toy.

Our second-to-last day of school on Wednesday was our annual Field Day, with many track events. This includes a color run:

The elementary kids run and the middle/high school kids throw the color. I ran with a little four-year-old who honest-to-goodness ran an entire 3/4 of a mile around the track. Good thing I run regularly myself now, or I would never have been able to keep up with her.

 This year there was also a kite-flying contest.

We live in the perfect place for flying kites.

The last day of school includes an awards assembly, at which all my children got honor roll awards and other recognition. There is also always a staff vs. students basketball game, in which my oldest two boys played. I didn't get any photos of any of this, however, because the construction at our school means we have to do everything in the old gym, which has these really odd lights that make any photos look entirely green.

In real life it looks okay, but any photos look like they were taken under the sea or during an alien invasion. So weird.


There you have it! My life, snapshotted.