Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Beautiful Tuesday Borscht!

On this weeks menu of new things to try is Borscht. Follow that link to the recipe I used. Borscht is a Ukranian soup made mostly from root vegetables, mainly beets, onions and carrots. Add veggie broth and cabbage and voila! The soup is red and warm and amazing!

Even if you hate beets, you should try this. I am not sure when my own taste buds evolved to enjoy the flavor of beets, but I am grateful! The soup is garnished with parsley, chives and sour cream. I am also serving hot sour dough bread with my soup.

Root veggies are the staple of cold regions. After the harvest, root veggies keep the longest at the coldest temperature. So if you live in a cold region, consider root vegetable soups as your staple too. The tasty veggies are seasonal, which means less petrol usage and maybe a bike ride to the market, if you don't have snow yet. Also, cabbage, bot a root veggie, grows and stores very well this time of year. (Cabbage can be wrapped in foil, with butter (or sub) and minced garlic and thrown on the bbq for a delicious treat!)

In other news, Christmas music is 24/7 on the radio here. Warm sourdough, hot Borscht and Bing Crosby, I am in heaven, I think!! Hopefully I will post a pic or two from our Tofurkey Day celebration.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Something New Every Week

For dinner the boys and I have been trying something new once per week. They grumble, but I enjoy cooking new things. The first thing new we tried was potato leek soup. It was a hit! That was a while ago and I can't really remember what has been in between, but this week we put a new spin on the shepherd pie. I think we did, at least. I have never had one, so I really don't know. Tris and I saw this at the Pine Country Restaurant in Williams last weekend. (They should call that place Pie Country because last time we were there, I counted 41 pies on the menu!)

So the shepherds pie goes as follows, layered in this order: a veggie burger patty, mashed potatoes, peas (or veggie of your choice), topped with gravy. The whole thing was vegan and wheat free and mighty delicious! I googled a recipe for vegan gravy and I hit the jackpot! Check out the recipe if you are so inclined.

The picture doesn't do the flavor any justice, but it was devoured by all. The brussle sprouts in the picture were on the stalk still when I bought them at Trader Joes. I sauteed a half of an onion in olive oil, then set the sprouts in to slow cook. They were still crunchy at dinner, so I would say they came out nearly perfect. Number 3 ate three servings! Have you ever heard of such a thing? Crazy kid! Number 2 gagged his way to swallowing just one, but it stayed down.

I wonder what surprise I will cook up next week. I will try and make this a regular thing, but with Tris being gone all week and finals just around the corner, I may not be able to follow through.

UPDATE: A post or two ago I was talking about how I should be in the boys room reducing the stuff. Well I did it today. I have one whole box of just tiny underwear! Not a small box either. I also have three more boxes filled with clothes that don't fit anymore. Still working on it, but I hope to be done by Friday!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Me and My Lady

Sometimes you just need something pretty to look at...

Someone Call the Plumber!

Oh wait, we are the plumbers! Not because we want to be though! The douche bag who sold us our trailer lied to us. When we asked about the plumbing he said it was great! the first time we went to see it, yes we went more than once, we had the kiddos with us. We explained that we were moving in the winter and that we would need something with working appliances and hot water. He and his lady assured us that all was working. After we thought on it for two weeks, we decided to another look at what we might be buying. Again, we asked about the plumbing and again we were told all was well. We inspected, paid, got the title and were on our way. Later that evening while we were testing things, we called to ask about the hot water heater. We weren't sure where the pilot was lit. No return call. We knew then that there was a problem.

Fast forward to this past weekend. We did some research and figured out the hot water heater, which does work, by the way, but when we plugged the water in and turned it on we found six obscured burst holes in the pipes! Three of them were hidden but easy to get to, one was a slight pain, but the other two are under the shower! Tiny space, no light, big holes! We did an epoxy fix job on the four easier pipes and tried a clamp job on the shower pipes, but we are just going to have to replumb. I'm up for it but Tris is pissed! Well, she's getting over it, but what a weekend! I'm excited because I get to plumb! I'm looking forward to doing the whole trailer, but I am not so sure Tris is feeling to zealous!

In other trailer news, we bought bails of straw to go around the bottom of the trailer to keep some warmth in, plus we have to have a small light bulb on under the trailer at night. These are things about living in the cold I did not know. Alls well that ends well and this story will have a happy ending! (In two weeks...)


Is anyone else wondering what the fuck the Queer Hippies are up to? I am and I am one of them! The weekends have been full of deep cleaning and deep contemplation. Do you know how much shit you can accumulate in 6.5 years? That's how long I have been in this house and this crap has just piled! Furniture, toys, clothes, books, photos, music, stuff, stuff and more stuff. So that's what we have been doing. De-stuffing.

This weekend we are having a yard sale. You know you want our stuff, right? Wrong! Get rid of your own stuff! It's so freeing! When we move, December 18, just so you know, we will have fewer than 20 boxes of only the most necessary items. There are a few things we are putting into storage. I cannot part with my art collection. It is by no means up the standards of Bette Porter's art collection, but it's mine and I enjoy it! The treadle sewing machine comes too. When I go electricity free, I will still need to sew pee pee swipes, napkins and wrap-n-mats!

The photos have been taken out of albums and put in one photo box. One box for a whole shelf of memories! Why didn't I do that forever ago? We bought 5 new locally made ceramic bowls from an Empty Bowls event a few weeks ago. Along with some plates from another local potter, we will have the 5 dishes we are bringing to eat from. We each also have only one ceramic mug to drink from. I have found and thrifted solid silver silverware to take with us. The dish load will be drastically reduced, which is great because water will be a scarcity up there. There is no well, only a refillable tank.

The next big project is the boys room. I should be working on it right now. They have so many clothes. I would like to reduce that to 7 shirts, 7 boxers and 2 long sleeves and 1 jacket each. Pants numbers are still up in the air because I think 7 is too many, but I am not sure what number will be just right. They don't have many toys here because they play outside most of the time. We will be investing in a new bike for Number 3 and puncture proof tires for Numbers 1 and 2.

I am feeling a bit overwhelmed with what still has to be completed for this weekends big sale, but I know it will all be pulled together in typical last minute Queer Hippie fashion!