Saturday, February 09, 2008

The cooped up cook

I just realized I have not posted in almost a week--where does the time go? I have been feeling uninspired lately. I think all this snow is starting to make me loopy. When I say "all this snow" please know that this has been a VERY snowy winter here in the Chicagoland area. There has been more snow this year than in the past 29 years. The roads have been horrible and most days, I have limited mobility as far as getting out on the streets--so I have been feeling very cooped up. When I get cooped up I cook and nest. I have been obsessed with trying out new recipes and home decorating and cleaning house--which are very good things, but I am so tired of this snow, ice, fog and COLD!

Here is a photo of the FOG that has been around just about every morning for the past week. Spooky. So many flights cancelled out of Chicago airports due to not only the snow, but the fog.

This is Finley in all his glory. He LOVES the snow and he runs and tunnels and digs and frolics over the snow drifts. My husband calls him "Baby Sled Dog". You know how men can go to "Fantasy Baseball Camp" and as a fan they can participate in Spring Training?
Well, my husband wishes they had "Fantasy Sled Dog Camp" for dogs, because he would totally take Fin to the Iditarod Dog Race in Alaska.Fin has been reading up on it. Forrest loathes the cold and snow, so while my husband and Finley dream about dog races, Forrest lays under his Pooh blanket and dreams about food.....which brings me to all the cooking I have been doing.
This is steak with homemade olive tapenade and chopped plum tomatos and rosemary roasted sweet potatos--with butter on top because no matter how fancy you make a potato it always has to have either butter or ketchup.

These are scallpos with a tobasco pepper reduction, carmelized onions, fried pancetta, and fresh chopped basil on top. These were outstanding if I do say so myself...and I do.

There is nothing I like more on cold days than hot soup. Soup is one of my favorite things any time really. So, this night I made a soup duo. The top soup is a butternut squash soup with a dash of cloves, a dollop of creme fresh, fried pancetta, and crispy fried basil leaves. The second is homemade chile with with chorizo and beef, carmelized onions, creme fresh and sharp cheddar cheese. Divine.

This bottom photo is how I cook MOST of the time--hot dog with curly frito things and a cold beer. Thank G_d my husband is not picky. HA.

I hope that where ever you are, you have better weather than me.

Do any of you have any wonderful cold weather recipes or favorite meals? Stay warm, and happy cooking!

(all photos from MonkeyPosh LLC)


Blogger Fightin' Mad Mary said...

I thought you were able to catch a later flight and all this week I've pictured you in New York enjoying the second half of fashion week.

Maybe it's time to move somewhere south of the Mason-Dixon line?

Finley is the absolute cutest in the snow! and sweet Forest curled up under his pooh blanket is the definition of cozy!

You can cook for me anytime!

9:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am glad you were able to get away, if only for the day.
Always great to see you. The Featherston show was great, no?
How is your Grandmother?
Finley is too cute. Forrest is too sweet.
The food looks great and the wienee with the Fritos is hilarious.
Stay warm little Monkey!

2:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Jen. OMG, what a darling post. This snow is getting to me, too. I think I am getting a bit goofy. I was going to take a picture of Bentley surrounded by dog treats and post that he was giving up dog treats for Lent.

Big sloppy beagle kisses to Finley and Forest.

5:48 AM  
Blogger Jamie said...

Cold weather cooking means two things to me: chili and pot roasts in my slow cooker.

8:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dang, woman-you are a great cook! I really can't add to any of your talents, believe me, although I must say that I make great buttermilk waffles, hee, hee!

I love the photos of the kids. They are so darling.

Stay warm, but not too warm that you burn down the kitchen, lol!

Hugs and love!

9:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hee hee the hot dog with the frito twists. you can take the girl out of oklahoma, but you cannot take the oklahoma out of the girl.
those scallops make my mouth water.

finley is so cute, and poor forrest. is he doing any better? too funny about finley as a sled dog. i hope your weather improves.


9:38 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Yum yum yum! I didn't know you were a cook, P! Hope the weather is better there. It's blustery as heck here in NYC!


12:11 PM  
Blogger Pia said...

Hey Martha Stewart!
Oops, sorry, I mean, hi Jen!

Your culinary talents are awesome indeed! Shoot, you're making me hungry and I am trying to diet, but by all means carry on and cook up a storm. Best thing to do when cooped up in the snow is to cook and enjoy! Buon appetito....

How are you doing? Hand all healed? I hope so.

Awww, Finley looks so cute in all the snow, I know he has to hop to get around. That's what my cats do when the snow is deep. They look funny! They would rather stay inside under the blankets like Forrest( poor cutie, he looks so comfy and cozy.) I hope Forrest is doing better, please give him a hug for me, Finley too, thanks.

I'm sorry you have so much snow, no snow in NJ, but girl..., it is so cold, ten degrees today with lots of wind, we had to put Jinx's blanket on her even though she stays in the barn when it is too windy. She will however, stand in the pouring rain. Yep, horses are very smart animals, but they sure can act dumb sometimes.

You take care Jen, stay warm and be well sweetie.

1:15 PM  
Blogger Nicky said...

Hi Jen! So I am going to be a big meanie and tell you that it is 75 degrees here and my hubby and I went on a picnic in the park on Sunday. Sorry! heehee. Your cooking looks delish! I also love that there is no ketchup on that hot dog, what a good Chicagoan you are! :) And as always, I love seeing pics of your dogs. Have a great week and I'll try to send some warm weather your way!

11:18 AM  
Blogger Swirl Girl said...

The snow is gorgeous.. although I am sure you are sick of it. Finley is way cute playing in the snow, but I am more of a "Forrest". I was hoping you would post about your cooking. I, too, have made the frankfurter frito-tata... :) Those rawk. The potatoes look good. You might have to share. Also, the hot sauce-y thing. I am always looking for some good recipes with hot sauce. Hot sauce is a staple in our house. Bread, milk, eggs, salt, Louisiana Hot Sauce.

6:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good god woman!! I need that steak in my life! Recipe please...

3:31 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

This Chicago weather is insane. I agree. Honestly, I don't think the we've got this much snow in the past few years put together.
But it's going to warm up soon! Well...for a while, until this schizo weather decides that it's time to invite Winter back for a brief visit in late April...(like last year).

2:44 PM  

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