Friday, July 31, 2009

Short Ribs Three Ways

Since I feel like crap, I decided to do something like this for Dave, for dinner. I bought the short ribs half off..cause they are about to expire. I must use them...can't waste food. I really can't. I've tried.

Also, since I feel like crap, I am posting a youtube video on making braised short ribs. He uses beer, I use red wine. I use a dutch oven, he uses a non-stick deep pan. I serve mine over wide noodles. (It's good to see a young man cook like this....geez, I sound so old).

For people who prefer to bbq short ribs, please enjoy the following one:

I loved spicy food so maybe this recipe for Korean Short Ribs...and make stir fried kim chee rice on the side.

For something a little different, my very favorite dish at Laos/Viet/Thai restaurants..especially here in Sacramento at Vientianne.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Oh NO!

So today, I went for my mammogram. Get there..they think I've never been there. They finally figure it out. Good.

They send me into a small room..take off my clothes, put on a size 10 robe and wait. I stand, cause if I sit, everyone will see my business...all of it.

Tech calls me in. She gets my records I have an Elliott-Koontz last name.. and then we get down to business.

Nice lady says, "go ahead and take your right breast out of your robe". I just throw off the robe and stand there.."look, I am a little fatty and I don't care about keeping a robe on..let's go!" She says, "you are cute though!" I tell her "that is the nicest thing I've heard, standing here almost naked, in the last 7 years!" She goes on to tell me that I am funny. I tell her I wish I'd worn my Wednesday panties. She says, "it's okay..I wear panties Monday thru Friday...but don't wear em on the weekends. Just wear a short dress and let the wind blow thru if at all possible!" We both laughed.

It was a good dr. type event.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Mario Inspired Me

Mario has a new line of pasta sauces....I give this one two forks down. Very bland. I sometimes use a jarred sauce, in a pinch. I won't buy this one again.
This is my "go to" sauce in a pinch...and it is less expensive than many others. Even Cooks Illustrated gave it a good taste test.

So, I roasted some of my garden tomatoes...little salt and pepper and extra virgin olive oil. Roasted on 450 for about 20 minutes.

I had lot's of juices flowing out of them...threw it all in a pot with some fresh garden basil..and let it reduce. I later added some garden green beans...ground em up after they were tender. I also added one small can of organic tomato sauce and about 1 tsp of sugar..and more fresh basil when I finished it.

This passed the taste test around here! Eat your heart out Mario!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Cookware Give-away!!

click on post title and go over to Nanny Goats in Panties to enter! It is so easy.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

My Big Fat Bowl of Tomatoes...and basil

Ya got your pear tomatoes, your yellow grape tomatoes, your beefsteak, your romas, and some extra-carotenes. They grew up while I was gone.

This is how I maka meataballs--sort of

After browning, I finish my meatballs in the "gravy". The secret to moist meatballs is soaking that bread in milk!

Below is a fun tutorial too...wish I woulda had a dad who liked to cook like this:

Friday, July 24, 2009

Pirates Cove in Garibaldi, Oregon

Very scenic...this part of the coast.
Headin' to lunch..and then to lighthouse and beach.

The Pacific Oysters were 'licious

The clam chowder was clammy!


Because we were on the coast, Dave ordered a Reuben. House made saurkraut.

The views were hard to take.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Garden Update

Next door, at the in-laws, we have many tomato plants..and a big pot of lemon cukes!
These are the "extra-carotene tomatoes"

These are the very sweet yellows.

Of course, we have the corn and zuchinni growing in the front yard...and whatever that plant is there in the left hand corner.
This is my tomato and herb raised bed. The romas and pear tomatoes are ripening and are delish.

My cukes, carrots, radishes, and green beans are in this bed. Green beans are sprouting, carrots are up, and we have cukes growing. This will be my potato bed when it gets cooler.

These are my watermelon and black heirloom tomatoes. I can't wait. Maybe a few will be ripe when we get home from vacation?

My one cucumber....but I have eight more growing!
Gardening makes me very happy. See ya when I get back!


My granddaughter Elaina.... and her BFF, Bella
Bella lives across the street...or did. She is moving to D.C. in August. :( Elaina will be very sad.

But, she will have gymnastics to keep her busy. She's only three..but she's unafraid.

All photos by Mike Harris, photographer @
We leave on vacation tomorrow...I'll have to update ya'll with a garden photo before we go! The veggies are doing just fine. I hope the corn makes it!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

More Family Images

I added the above pic of Jer, about 2 weeks after heart surgery... 9 years ago.
Click on photos to enlarge. Photos by Freeze Frame Photography,

My youngest son, Jeremy, taken during a trip to see Mike, Jenn, and the kids a couple of years ago. He is quite the tat artist! The "Live to Die" above his heart surgery scar is quite telling.

All images by Freeze Frame Photography...Mike Harris, photographer.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Hoping Elaina didn't kick Ethan into the fence after Mike was finished.
Give him some fire and let him run with it!

I told ya Dave spent his formative years in Germany. Got Beer?

One of my brothers great road pictures...Wyoming traffic can be a real bitch!

Remember the first photo? Well, this is what my son drags around when he takes those! (the kids and the equipment).
Ah, the life of a photographer!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Our Memorial for Robert--friends, food and drink!

Click on photos to enlarge:

We started out at a tiny little old cemetery on ElderCreek Road. Robert was buried in the family plot..his official headstone not up yet. We left a "gift basket" with breakfast beer and hydrangeas, shared a sip of beer and then poured the rest on top.. from us and some of his other friends. (Greg, you'll be happy to know this). It is an old little cemetery..established in 1864.

We then drove over to his the address online. I knew he lived next to a good friend who he played music with and made stringed instruments with. Someone lives in his house now, but we spoke to the neighbors and they knew Robert and they pointed us in the direction of his friend, Stuart who lived two houses down. He was in his truck getting ready to leave when we drove up. We spoke briefly. He recalled having lunch with Robert and I (and his girl Marian) when I first started the Sac Food Forums..we ate at The Waterboy. He spoke of how 10th street became a commune of sorts, helping Robert when he fell ill. He said by the time Robert was diagnosed, the cancer was everywhere in his body. Stuart got why we stopped by......he said his memorial was wonderful with lots of musicians, tears, and lots of stories and laughter.

We were going to go to Guisti's..but we were too hungry and decided to do what Robert often did...a restaurant crawl down Stockton Blvd. We stopped at Alanzo's, where Robert and I talked about their fantastic pasole/pazole. We were not disappointed..again. Dave got the beef tacos. I had a red beer and Dave had a bud. Their food is "to die for" (sorry Robert..but you would've laughed at that one). If you want some real-deal Mexican breakfast..or lunch...or dinner, hit Alonzo's on Stockton by Yankee Ace Hardware...right down from Happy Garden Restaurant.
See ya later Robert!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Pork, Socks, and Birkenstocks

I took this after Dave's party at Akebono II, August of 08. Robert is having one great conversation with Phil and Jenny. He even hammed it up for the camera. He was off to the Fancy Food Show in SF that weekend.
I am sure Doreen is gonna love this photo...but Robert is behind her having yet another great conversation with his "date" at our pig roast last September.

Here, Doreen is explaining the fine art of pork sandwiches and condiments. Robert is actually interested in such topics.
Robert, old friend, we will miss you. I am happy you didn't have to suffer long with cancer. You were the first "chowish" friend I met here in Sac...and it was at on the CA board. We had lots of great dinners and lunches together....and ended up making many other chowish friendships. We'll miss your knowledge of food and wine, your delightful sense of humor, your musicianship, and your big heart...oh and Dave will totally miss your ultra-liberal views...and your fashion sense, ie., socks and birkenstocks.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Post 4th Brunch at our Place

Dave made some damn fine Denver Ribs (lamb ribs)...bbq'd em low and slow and we marinated them in olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and rosemary. We had shrimp with cocktail sauce, wild mushroom and garlic ravioli with olive oil and parmesean cheese, Shankari brought some fantastic potato salad. I made an eggs benedict casserole with fried green tomatoes on top...drizzled with hollandaise and hash browns on the side. We had brie, and scones/muffins/bread with lemon curd....and some fruit....forgot to put the blueberries on top of the other fruit. Oh well. I also grilled up some veggies and then swirled them into a grilled bloody mary mix...go virgin or go vodka. It was good either way.

The best part of the day was the company...such awesome people, and funny too!

Thanks to Lori ( for taking the pics and bringing the juice!

Thanks to Margaret and Ron ( ) for the soda.

Thanks to Shankari and Ra ( ) for the salad.

Thanks to Greg and Becky ( ) for the breakfast beer. Thanks Sac-eats and Runnergirl!

Thanks to Jenny and Phil for bringing the fabulous champagne and oj for the mimosas..oh, and vodka. No blog...just dogs.

Thanks to my in-laws for allowing us to eat on their patio..and move furniture around...shout out to Bill and Joyce! They also ran to the store Sunday morning...and mom helped me dish up.

Thanks to my husband, Dave, for being such a great bbq'r and helpful host.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Shuckin' and Jivin'......Tomales Bay, CA

Other shuckers and jivers...and oyster slurpers.

Garbage rack for shells

Oysters and ice.. and Jenny has her tray ready.

What kind should be get?

Phil giving explicit directions on how to properly shuck and jive.

Phil and I shucked..and Jenny jived.

Jenny and Phil enjoying the splendor of The Marshall Riviera....and see Jenny's new car..the eggplant colored one. It's a smart Beemer.
It was a great day..other than the "Mare Island Traffic Debacle".