Sunday, March 07, 2010

One Day, Two Creepy Movies

I don't actually watch these kinds of movies very often, so it's even more odd that I managed to watch two in one day. Joshua is about this little boy who is older than his 9 years, and whose parents have a new baby, Lily. Joshua is a gifted pianist and is very close to his maternal uncle.

Remember that Twilight Zone episode with the little boy Anthony, who could control an entire town with his thoughts? "It's a Good Life" was the name of the episode. This movie reminds me of that.

People around Joshua are going insane and animals...well...animals are experiencing something a little more permanent.

Good movie.

Then I watched "Knowing." This one has Nick Cage in it and it's pretty good. I'm glad I didn't pay to watch it in a theatre, though. It reminded me of "Sixth Sense" a bit. Little boy Caleb hears whispers and it turns out that a little girl at his same elementary school heard those whispers too 50 years ago. But these are whispers of truth and that little girl is hearing of events that will happen over the course of the the next 50 years. Caleb's dad is a professor at MIT and figures out what is happening. And of course is going to try to stop some of those things from happening.

It's a pretty good movie. A bit predictable, though.

Spring is Springing!

It's about noon on Sunday and I'm sitting on my patio grilling turkey burgers for my guys. Even though we've lived here over 7 years, I still can scarce believe it when I can do such a thing in March. It's a gloriously sunny day and should hit the low 60s. I'd like to go on a jaunt this afternoon. We'll see. We've had a very long run of nasty weather lately. Just five days ago we had snow piling up.

We are going to start the garden planning in earnest in the next couple of days. Our plan is to crew up with YogiLiz and garden on her property. Because...she HAS property! We don't really have a good situation for gardening here. Liz likes to garden but it's too much for just one person. MensaBoy offered his services as slave so why not? He'll prep the soil for us, with the able assistance of Riley and Taylor, and we hope to plant a big enough garden to sustain both families and put up some things, like tomatoes, for winter.

However, MB has a caveat. He wants us to plan moringa plants. And he's ordered the seeds already. Apparently this plant is a miracle. You can read about it here. Could be interesting. At the very least it looks like a pretty plant! I guess it's actually a tree but you can prune it to more plant-like. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Muffins

These are actually called "Only-Kids-Need-Apply Muffins" in my muffin cookbook, "Gloria's Glorious Muffins."

But frankly, I wouldn't waste these on kids. I used my $5-a-bag grain-sweetened chocolate chips in them. And my all-natural peanut butter. I doubt those galutes would appreciate the commitment I made to these!

We had a 2-hour school delay this morning so it seemed like the perfect time to bake.

1 C whole-wheat pastry flour (I used white because that's what I have right now)
1 C whole-wheat flour
1/2 C unbleached white flour
1/4 C toasted wheat germ
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda

Sift together those together in a big bowl. Toss in
1 1/4 C carob chips (my grain-sweetened choc chips. and I only had one cup)

Set aside.

1 C hot water
1/2 C chunky peanut butter (I used smooth)
1 C soy or cow's milk (I used vanilla soy)
1/4 C canola oil
1/4 C honey, warmed slightly

Blend those together in a smaller bowl. I used my immersion blender.

Pour wet into dry, mix just until longer than that!
Spoon into muffin cups or tins. You're supposed to get 12, but I got 14.

Bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes. Cool in baking tins for another 10 minutes.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Tostadas with Homemade Refritos

It was a decadent meal last night. That's what it all boiled down to. It just was further proof that a vegetarian diet holds many delights that you never thought of before.

It began Saturday afternoon when I soaked the pintos. I intended to make the refried beans and do tostadas Sunday but got sidetracked and made this DELICIOUS Hungarian Mushroom Soup instead. I wanted to get those mushes out of the fridge and into the pot.

Back to the refritos: Yesterday I came home from work to change before going for a massage. I put the beans on to simmer while I was gone. (leaving Taylor with instructions to turn them off then the timer went off)When I got home the beans were cooked to a fairly good tender stage. If I'd been here I would have given them a little time, but I felt they were done enough to avoid any gastronomic upset. I sauteed onion, garlic, a little red bell pepper, cumin and salt in a big frying pan and then dropped in the beans. I then mashed the whole shooting match with my potato masher.

And here's the really decadent part: I fried fresh corn tortillas. I remember when we were kids Mom used to do that. At that time pre-fried or baked and shaped taco shells weren't on the market yet. Oh man! Nothing does it like freshly-fried tortillas.

And so I fried, and the three of us built, and we had a fantastic meal.

The refrito recipes is from the New Moosewood Cookbook, of course. I really enjoy Mollie Katzen's tips on how to eat a tostada:

"Take a crisp tortilla and place it on your place. add a spoonful of refritos, and spread them imaginatively in place. sprinkle on some grated cheese, followed by an elaborate mound of assorted accessories, the height of which considers the dimensions of your mouth. Ladle on a little sauce, or spoon on some salsa. Now you are ready to make a noble attempt to eat it daintily. Keep your plate under your chin to catch what falls or drips."

Given my guys and their addiction to all things sandwiche, they just used two tortillas and made sandwich tostadas. And then we ate them with forks for the most part.