October 2007
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Monthly Archives: October 2007

Ahhhhhhhhhhh, Alfredo

In all the years I’ve been cooking, I never once even looked at a recipe for Alfredo sauce. I have no idea of why. I’ve done bernaise, and hollandaise and many other sauces that are complicated and a pain in the butt to do correctly but never even considered Alfredo. When I’ve wanted it, I’ve just gone and bought a jar.

Last week I decided to give it a try and started looking up recipes. It was rather easy. I admit to being shocked at how easy. Feeling rather foolish that I’d never bothered to even find out how easy.

Butter, garlic, cream and parmesan cheese. Not a lot of ingredients. Some recipes called for cream cheese or mozarella but the more authentic ones just used the first 4.

Melt the butter, cook the garlic until soft, add the cream and heat, then the parmesan until the sauce is smooth. Perfect with the lemon chicken tortolloni.

What I didn’t realize about this sauce, though is the fat content. Yikes…butter, cream AND cheese. If I’m going to make it like that it’s going to be a once or twice a year thing at most. But I love this sauce so I’m going to be doing some experimenting to see if I can’t bring it down enough to make more often. Olive oil instead of butter, 2% milk instead of cream. Nothing will substitute for the parmesan but that’s a hard cheese and not as high in fat content as some of the softer ones. We’ll see.

The main thing I learned from this is to investigate those things I buy because I either don’t want to cook them or have never even looked at a recipe for them.

As an aside…the eggplant is still producing. It’s almost November and we’ve still got fruit on the plants. And more flowers. If I ever decide to grow this stuff again, please yell at me…loudly.

As promised…the baby shower.

No, not in cutesy crap. Of which there was plenty. I really thought if she got one more sleeper set and socks that I’d throw up. Much as I hate to say it, showers haven’t changed much since the ’50s.

My niece got all the big stuff she needs…crib, dressing table, bathtub, stroller (complete with cup holders), baby monitor, car seats. Yes, 2 car seats. They each have a vehicle and one car is a 2 door. My niece said she wasn’t about to hassle with taking a car seat in and out of that one. If she hadn’t gotten 2 as gifts, she’d have bought them herself. Very practical young woman.

The room was nice. In the community center of a local subdivision. Very elegant. It didn’t need all the tacky shower decorations that, luckily, ended up staying in the bag for return to the store.

my niece at her shower

The 2 teddy bears on this picture are one short of the actual TEDDY bears that she got. She also got Pooh bears and a Piglet. But the 3 teddy bears became significant when we realized that the 3 of us sisters had each gotten her a bear without consulting the others. We were laughing about it until we hit on the explanation and then it became kind of sad.

Almost as one it hit us that none of the 3 of us had had teddy bears as kids. We had never even been allowed to express a wish to have one. Dolls were ok but bears weren’t. I don’t know why. Stuffed animals other than bears were ok once we got to teenage. But never a bear.

Maybe that’s why I want a Rosie the Riveter bear so badly. rosie

But this is one of those things that just don’t count if you have to buy it for yourself. So Kendra will never have to worry about that. We’ll just have to wait and see which bear she likes the most. Then we can have sibling rivalry over who the baby loves the most.

What’s going on?

Finally getting settled back in after my trip. I wish I could have stayed another week or even 2. On our way up the trees were mainly green with a splash of rust or orange or red or a dusting of gold peeking through. Coming back, the color was mostly green but with lines of color and large patches in the higher elevations. It’s been a lot of years since I’ve seen the leaves turn. It would have been nice to see it again.

This is the view from my uncle’s back yard. That farm ‘next door’ is actually about a mile away.

View from my uncle's back yard

I would love to see this next one with the trees in full color. The New River Gorge in West Virginia.

New River Gorge in WV

Leo got a great shot of the bridge over the gorge. Highest one in the eastern US. It looks great in color but I tried grayscale and like it better. See what you think.

New River Gorge Bridge

New River Gorge Bridge

Will tell you about the shower later. Oh, and my incursion into making my own alfredo sauce from scratch.

Ok, we have a new list

If you look in the sidebar, under the Beauvoir quote, you’ll see a link that says ‘subscribe’. If you click on it, it’ll take you to a page where you have to input your email address.

Sorry for the inconvenience.

New Stuff

If you are one of those who drops in fairly regularly (and cusses because I haven’t updated) you may be wondering why you haven’t gotten a notify about this.

You can chalk it up to my being extremely dumb in the past couple days. I had to migrate to a new host and lost my majordomo account. (No, that wasn’t the stupid part…saving several hundred dollars a year is never stupid) Before I cancelled the old hosting account though, I forgot to do a ‘who’ to the mailing list to retrieve your email addresses so I could start a new list and let you know about it.

I’m doing my best to either get majordomo or another mailing list program going. When I do, you’ll have to resubscribe, if you care to. As lax as I’ve been, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear you breathe a sigh of relief that there’ll be one less email in your inbox.

The party’s over…thank goodness.

My niece’s baby shower was this past weekend. My sisters and I just about went nuts getting things ready for it and getting set up. My youngest sister, the new baby’s grandma (and how she hates that appellation) came close to braining her husband a couple of times.

And then there was my stepfather’s wife. Think of every wicked stepmother in every fairy tale you ever read or heard, roll them into one and add in a Nazi concentration guard and you’ll ALMOST have the personality of this woman. I’d post a picture but you’d probably all unsubscribe if I subjected you to that.

Any way…we got a real good picture of the christening shawl and I’m also posting a closer detail for you to see and drool over. It was one of my finer creations.

christening shawl

And the detail

christening shawl detail