Jackpot

November 25, 2018

I recently ran across an unused gift card in my desk drawer…then another. Then, an online credit memo. Yoo hoo! What I had tucked away for safe keeping I had completely forgotten about. I think I’ll use this “found cash” to jump start my holiday shopping…maybe pick up a little perk for myself in the process. Just in time for Cyber Monday. Check those drawers, people.

 

 

 

A few ideas to kick off the season, top to bottom:

A new glaze, Zinc, on Heath Ceramics Coupe Dessert Bowl courtesy of that unearthed online credit memo. Photo: https://www.heathceramics.com/collections/bowls/products/dessert-bowl-coupe

This Floating Gemstones Necklace Kit from Purl Soho provides enough material to create several great gifts in the month ahead. Photo: https://www.purlsoho.com/floating-gemstones-necklace-kit.html

Also from Purl Soho, Posy, a hand-dyed Superwash Cashmere, Merino and Nylon blend yarn. Gift the skeins to your favorite knitter or whip up a warm cap or scarf in this Winter-busting shade…Sour Gooseberry. Photo: https://www.purlsoho.com/posy-gift-list-gallery.html

If you’re itching to start decking the halls, Trader Joe’s has the best value in town with their mixed evergreen wreaths. Photo: gp

Start them now and you’ll have gorgeous amaryllis in bloom for Christmas. This moss covered bulb is available from Terrain. Photo: https://www.shopterrain.com

 

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Cooling Greens

August 20, 2017

This August heat has inspired me to reach for anything green from the season’s bounty, switching up my weekly shopping trip which seems zeroed in on auto-pilot. Let’s see what this exercise has produced.

From the top:

It started with this green spider orchid from Trader Joe’s inspiring the rest of my selections.

Locally grown Honeydew melons are just the break I needed from Watermelon.

These Green Zebra heirloom tomatoes will switch up that Summertime BLT or Caprese.

Local fresh herbs…it doesn’t get better. Basil for a Pesto Pizza on the grill or maybe a Pesto Potato Salad…Parsley and Mint for a Chimichurri to compliment anything grilled.

Zucchini have gotten a bad rap by showing up on your desk or doorstep by the bagful. Take full advantage by grilling them up with some onions, peppers and tomatoes or knocking out a batch of Zucchini Muffins.

Photo: gp

 

 

 

 

 

Lentil Tacos

May 2, 2017

Just in time for Cinco de Mayo…Lentil Tacos. Four ingredients , a stack of corn tortillas and fifteen minutes….Ole’. Dinner is served.

G’s Lentil Tacos

1 package Trader Joe’s Steamed Lentils ( 17.6 oz)

1/2 small red onion diced

1/2 packet Trader Joe’s Taco Seasoning Mix

1 19 oz. can diced tomatoes with green chilis or lime and cilantro

1 tablespoon general use olive oil

 

Heat oil in skillet and sauté onions for two minutes. Add taco seasoning and continue cooking for 2 minutes. Add the precooked lentils, tomatoes and 1/2 cup of water, stirring to combine.Bring mixture to a simmer and cook an additional 5 minutes.

Serve on grilled corn tortillas street style with some additional chopped onion and cilantro or fully loaded American style with your favorite taco toppings.

 

photos: gp

 

 

 

 

 

Easter Bake

April 2, 2017

Even with a short list of ingredients baking bread can be a tricky undertaking. This recipe for Milanese Raisin Bread might be the exception. The addition of the raisin soaking liquid to the 50/50 ratio of flour to fruit gives this rich rustic loaf it’s distinct sweet flavor and deep brown crust. My test loaf actually cut and tasted better after a couple of days, so you’ll be fine baking it off ahead of time if you decide to add it to an Easter menu. The thought of pairing this with a sliver a baked ham and a touch of grainy mustard has me thinking…you might want to make two.

 

Photos:gp

Final photo, https://food52.com/recipes/66796-pantramvai-milanese-raisin-bread

 

 

 

 

How can you not be inspired when you spot a pear like this at the market?  And, with that you have the start of a 5 ingredient / 5 minute salad, barely needs a recipe.  Crunchy, protein packed, phytonutrient rich, slightly sweet and a little bit salty. The simplequietmodern way to pack a lunch. OK…who’s hungry?

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G's Quinoa, Kale and Pear Salad

I’ve tried to re-create here a similar salad that I love from Simply Good Kitchen. This is so good and so simple that I might just be dragging this into the Fall by adjusting it a bit. Adding a touch of walnut oil to the vinaigrette and swapping out the pistachios for toasted walnuts could be the ticket. A bit of blue cheese couldn’t hurt either.

 

 

 

 

Dog Days

July 10, 2014

The dog days are upon us and there is nothing like this kind of  simplequietmodern reward after a productive  day working in the yard…or, maybe just rinsing off a full day of Summer fun. Can it be that a bit of sun, a gentle breeze, some water and a bar of soap can be transformative? I think it can.

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shower photo via:http://remash.tumblr.com/

Add in a bar of Neutrogena Original Formula Transparent  and Trader Joe’s Ginger Almond Oatmeal Exfoliant and you’re covered head-to-toe.

 

Like a shot in the arm.

February 22, 2014

It’s still winter but you’ve had your fill of your  repertoire of comforting pasta dishes, soups and stews. The warming spices of Indian cuisine might seem like just the ticket to shake things up but learning a new kitchen culture might be more than you want to take on. Time to put a simplequietmodern plan into action…make something from scratch and get a little help from a jar. While you are simmering a classic combination of peas, potatoes, cauliflower and onion in a jarred Masala sauce you have time to whip a batch of complimentary Coriander Cilantro Flatbreads from scratch. Add add a handful of cashews and raisins to the vegetables and a side of Raita  and some Basmati rice and you have got a perfect meatless meal in less than 45 mins. This should hold your interest till Spring.

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The flatbread recipe can be found here: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/ground-coriander-and-cilantro-flatbreads-242112