Monday, September 28, 2009

Diapers and parenting

Uncle Bobby and Aunt Robin, thank you so much for the diapers. They are super-cool. It's so neat to see all the things they come up with these days for little kids. I apologize for not sending a thank you note sooner. I was warned that once I became a parent I would truly lose my mind, I didn't believe it as first, but it is true. Preoccupation is now my occupation.
Anyway, Henry is getting so big. And once I figure out how to post pictures, I'll do so. Thanks again.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Boise Farmer's Market Video Resized

OK. So snow is forcast for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week. But, thanks that Boise is in the Banana Belt, so the snow will stay ion the mountains where it belongs. Snow level: 5000 feet. So this video may be the last for the Farmer's Market tis year. We'll see!

Enjoy!! Let me know if this is any better. Video taken on the "Bike Cam".

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Oktoberfest Recipes

And continuing with our Oktoberfest theme and recipes from, here are some more. Enjoy these. This will be all for this year!

Leeks and potatoes are simmered with a ham bone, then pureed before cream is added to this subtle soup.

German Leek and Potato Soup

Serves: 6
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup butter
1 cup chopped leeks
8 potatoes, peeled and sliced
6 cups water
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 ham bone
1 cup heavy cream
salt and pepper to taste

In a large pot over medium heat, cook onions in butter until translucent. Stir in leeks, potatoes, water, thyme and the ham bone. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer until potatoes are tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

Remove ham bone and puree soup with a blender or food processor. Return to pot, stir in cream, salt and pepper, heat through and serve.


And here is the Grand Daddy of them all -


Serves: 6
4 pounds rump roast
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup red wine
1 cup red wine vinegar
2 cups water
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup sliced onion
2 bay leaves
10 black peppercorns
1/4 cup white sugar
5 whole cloves

Beef Prep:
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons bacon grease

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 cups sour cream

Rub the roast with salt and pepper and place in a large non-metal bowl. In a medium saucepan, combine wine, vinegar and 2 cups water and bring to a boil. Stir in garlic, onion, bay leaves, peppercorns, sugar and cloves and pour the marinade over the beef. Cover and refrigerate 12 hours or overnight.

Beef Prep - Remove the meat from the marinade and thoroughly pat dry. Dredge in 1 cup flour (may use more or less if necessary). Heat bacon grease in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Brown roast in drippings on all sides. Pour in half the marinade, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until tender, 3 hours.

Gravy - Remove meat to serving platter. Increase heat to medium-high; mix 2 tablespoons flour with 2 tablespoons water and add to pan, stirring until gravy thickens. Stir in sour cream. Pour sauce over sliced meat.

What to Drink? - Zinfandel or a lager that is on the sweet side.


Black Forest Cake

Serves: 12
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1/2 cup kirschwasser
1/2 cup butter
3 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 pinch salt
1 teaspoon strong brewed coffee
2 (14 ounce) cans pitted Bing cherries, drained

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon kirschwasser
1 (1 ounce) square semisweet chocolate

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line the bottoms of two 8 inch round pans with parchment paper circles. Sift together flour, cocoa, baking soda and 1 teaspoon salt. Set aside.

Cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Beat in flour mixture, alternating with buttermilk, until combined. Pour into 2 round 8 inch pans.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool completely. Remove paper from the cakes. Cut each layer in half, horizontally, making 4 layers total. Sprinkle layers with the 1/2 cup kirshwasser.

In a medium bowl, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Add confectioners sugar, pinch of salt, and coffee; beat until smooth. If the consistency is too thick, add a couple teaspoons of cherry juice or milk. Spread first layer of cake with 1/3 of the filling. Top with 1/3 of the cherries. Repeat with the remaining layers.

In a separate bowl, whip the cream to stiff peaks. Beat in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 1 tablespoon kirshwasser. Frost top and sides of cake. Sprinkle with chocolate curls made by using a potato peeler on semisweet baking chocolate.

What to Drink? - Port or a good TBA (I'd take the TBA) or a good Riesling Ice Wine

1st Course - German Leek and Potato Soup
2nd Course - Sauerbraten
Dessert - Black Forest Cake

There's a whole dinner for your Sweetheart during Oktoberfest when you were at the Beer Hall! Cheers!!

Boise Saturday Farmer's Market

I have been using Microsoft's Movie Maker and I really don't think it has kept pace with technology. It is very slow to make the movie after editing it and you are very limited on the available formats. I guess you get what you pay for. I found another video maker/editer called Pinnacle Studuo 12. This is my first attempt at Pinnacle, so let's see what I did. I am also putting a copy on my FaceBook account.


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Elderberry Puff Pie

Elderberry Puff Pie before baking. Look at those berries!

Elderberry Puff Pies after baking. YUM-O!

How good do those look?? Here is the recipe.

Elderberry Puff Pie

Source: Robin and Bob Young
Author Notes: Try using huckleberries or blueberries instead of the elderberries. Use your imagination.

Degree of Difficulty: Easy
Oven Temperature: 350°F
Servings: 12

2½ c Elderberries, fresh
½ c Sugar
1/8 t Salt
2 T Flour
3 T Lemon juice
½ pkg Puff Pastry, cut into 12 squares
12 T Cream cheese
½ c Walnuts, broken
4 T Butter

1. Mix elderberries, sugar, salt and lemon juice. Sprinkle with flour and mix.

2. Using a 12 section muffin pan, or 12 - ½ cup ramekin's, place 1 square of the puff pastry in each section.

3. Place 1 T cream cheese in the bottom of each section. Fill each section about ¾ full of the elderberry mixture. Place 1 T walnuts on top then 1 tsp of butter.

4. Bake in the oven at 350°F until the pastry is golden brown and the fruit is bubbly. Let cool 10 minutes and serve warm.

Cooking Times:
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Inactive Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

Cheers! Do enjoy this treat!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Wapiti Meadows Sojourn Video

On 17 September, Robin and I took a trip to North Central Idaho and the back country, looking for Peregrine habitat and Elk habitat. Here is a video of that trip. If you have never seen the Idaho back country, this will give you some idea of what it is like. This is Wapiti Meadows Ranch, Diana and Barry Bryant, Hosts, on Johnson Creek. An awesome place! (208) 633-3217. Getting there is half the fun. Ford the stream. Wrong road. Maybe a road. Not a road - goat trail! Closed road. Narrow road. Right road, finally. Enjoy!

Our trip to Wapiti Meadows on 17 September 2009

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Idaho Style "Old Peoples Dinner"

Yes, there really is an Idaho Style Old Peoples Dinner! Chicken? Yes, but sauteed and with an Elderberry Sauce. Potatoes? Yes, but smashed and with garlic, not whipped smooth enough to sip through a straw and smooth enough so one may, if so desired, "gum masticate" them. Gravy? Can't have smashed potatoes without gravy, and chicken gravy at that. Peas? You bet!! And just think, it's not even Sunday afternoon. But the real clincher to this dinner is the Elderberry Sauce. Sweet yet tart. Smooth yet "chunky". And fresh elderberries at that. Serve with a 2008 Dahlia Series Indian Creek Winery Pinot Gris. Here's the recipe. Enjoy!

Elderberry Sauce

5 c Elderberries, de-stamed and fresh
4 whole Cloves
1/2 c Sugar
1/2 c Plum Vodka (Koenig)

Add everything except the sugar to a 4 quart pot. Heat the berries over a low flame until the juices begin to run. Add the sugar and cook the combination until the liquid boils and the crystals dissolve. Use an immersible blender (Motor Boat) and lightly break the berries up - you want some texture. Pour the hot mixture into hot, sterilized jars and let seal. Enjoy with pork, chicken or turkey. Cheers!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Sunset In Boise

Now I know why I stay in Idaho

Lamb wit Currant Mint Sauce

WE Like lamb - almost any way you prepare it. Thanks to Afrimoo (Caroline on, we received this recipe. I have left the Metric measurements on for those who use that system and have only adjusted it slightly.

Lamb with Currant Mint Sauce

1/4 cup (50 mL) red wine vinegar
3 tbsp (50 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
1 T Lemon juice
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp (15 mL) chopped fresh rosemary (or 1 T thyme) (or 1 tsp/5 mL dried)
1 butterflied boneless leg of lamb (about 3 lb/1.5 kg)
1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper

Red Currant Mint Sauce:
1/2 cup (125 mL) red currant jelly
1/3 cup (75 mL) chopped packed fresh mint leaves
2 tbsp (25 mL) port wine (optional)
2 tbsp (25 mL) red wine vinegar
Pinch each sea salt and fresh cracked pepper

In large glass bowl, combine vinegar, oil, lemon juice, garlic and rosemary, or thyme; add lamb, turning to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours. (Make-ahead: Refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Or freeze in freezer bag for up to 2 weeks; thaw in refrigerator.)

Red Currant Mint Sauce:
In food processor, blend jelly, mint, port (if using), vinegar, salt and pepper. (Make-ahead: Refrigerate in airtight container for up to 3 days; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.)

Remove lamb from marinade, discarding any excess; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on greased grill over medium-high heat; close lid and grill, turning once, until meat thermometer registers 145°C (63°C) for medium-rare, 25 to 35 minutes, or until desired doneness.

Transfer to cutting board; tent with foil and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing thinly across the grain. Serve with sauce.

And this really looks good!!! I have not tried it, but will soon. If anyone tries this, please let u know what you thing. I suppose too, that you could use some Lamb Shanks instead of the Butterflied Leg of Lamb. Just some thoughts.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Idaho Salmon and Steelhead Days

OK, so really, it's not all wine and wine parties. Idaho is so lucky - we have Salmon! Fresh, wonderful, succulent salmon. Twice a year in the Boise area, there is a salmon feast: One in Meridian to support the Burn-Out Fund and then this one to help with the costs of the MK Nature Center. A beautiful natural center in the middle of Boise. Well, you be the judge. Look at these photos. And don't be afraid to go full screen at the prompt.

See what you missed? Good salmon! Cheers!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Mango Dessert Recipe

Rudy's: A Cooks Paradies not only has interesting trivia and kitchen supplies, they also have some very interesting Recipes of the Week. Here is one.

Mango Matrimony De Luxe
by Levi Root of Britain’s “Caribbean Foods Made Easy”

1 ripe mango, peeled, stone removed, flesh chopped
2 kiwi fruit, peeled, cut into quarters, cores removed, flesh finely sliced
2 ripe passionfruit, pulp and seeds
1 large piece preserved ginger (from a jar), finely chopped
1½ tbsp ginger syrup (from the jar of preserved ginger)
½ lime, juice only
double cream or ice cream, to serve

1. Mix the chopped mango, sliced kiwi and passion fruit pulp and seeds together in a large serving bowl.
2. Sprinkle over the chopped stem ginger and mix well.
3. Drizzle over the ginger syrup and squeeze over the lime juice. Mix carefully until the fruit is coated in the ginger and lime juice.
4. To serve, spoon the matrimony de luxe into four shallow serving bowls. Drizzle over double cream or add a scoop of ice cream.

If you like dessert or mango, you just gotta try this one. It sounds soooo refreshing! Do you want more recipes like this? Look at Rudy's: Cooks Paradise. Cheers!