Saturday, January 26, 2008


Once again I have challenged the recipe section of “Martha Stewart Living” and emerged triumphant.

I used to be really intimidated by the recipes in the magazine, especially after I made this really good pasta pie that took hours and was so labor intensive that I swore never to make it again even though I saved the recipe. I realize now that part of the problem was my uncertainty, but most of the problem was my old kitchen. For starters, it didn’t have counters. It also only had three burners, only one of which was full sized, on the stove, and the oven was so small I had to buy pans and baking dishes because normal ones wouldn’t fit in it. Now that I’ve moved here and have counters, a full sized oven, a refrigerator in the same room (in my old apartment the refrigerator was in the room next door because it didn’t fit in the room where the kitchen was), and a dishwasher, I’m having a lot more fun cooking.

It was almost as fun buying food after work on Friday, because Food City has a display in the front where they’ve built a stadium out of twelve-pack boxes and are playing out a Superbowl:

Super Bottle Bowl!

It looks like beer is about to run in a touchdown against vitamin water, but there’s still a chance for the water to turn it around.

Anyway, fully outfitted at the grocery store, I set to work this afternoon by getting out everything I would need:


See, right there, that’s where having kitchen counters is wonderful. In my old kitchen I had to run back and forth to the fridge and the pantry, or else get everything out and set it down on the floor. Also, to the right of the TV tray, you can see I got that knife set I wanted for Christmas, which is also wonderful.

Anyway, the first part of making the quiche was baking the crust, which I kind of cheated on. The recipe had long, complicated directions for making dough and chilling it and blind baking it filled with dried beans and doing all the other things Martha Stewart berates an assistant into doing, but I figured crust is crust and bought premade refrigerated pie crust dough.


I pressed it into the springform pan I got at an estate sale (I’m going to get back into going to those this summer), generously pricked the bottom with a fork until it was pretty much perforated, and baked it.

baked crust

The top got a little brown, but overall it seemed fine. I didn’t know if the quiche filling would rise during baking, so I made the crust fairly tall. After that, I had to make the bacon, which has long been a challenge to me. I like super crispy bacon, so I always made it in the microwave, and never really learned how to make it on the stovetop. Every time I try I end up with tiny, badly burned scraps of carbon that used to be meat, but this time I followed advice from my friend MegaBigEye (obviously not his real name) and started with a cold pan, cold bacon, and low heat:


It came out perfect. Once the bacon was down, I had to simmer the onions until translucent in the bacon drippings and some olive oil:


Once I cooked the hell out of the onions, I added the maple syrup:


I used real maple syrup from home, a stocking stuffer from my mom that I brought back in my suitcase. The maple and onion only cooked together for a minute, and then I removed it from the heat and mixed up the eggs, cream, and spices for the rest of the filling:


After that I had to mix everything together, pour it into the crust, and sprinkle it with the crumbled bacon.

ready for baking

It’s really hard to crumble bacon without eating any. When I make this again, I’ll have to make extra bacon to nibble while I put the quiche together. As it was, I licked my fingers about fifty times while crumbling the bacon. (Don’t worry, whoever’s reading. If I make this for you I will refrain from licking any of the food.) Anyway, I baked it, where the absurd height of the crust became even more apparent:


After it cooled, I sliced it up:


Oh my God, it was good. The bacon was salty, and there was just a hint of onion, and the maple was almost like an undertone. The whole thing together was delicious, and I continue to not be nearly as scared of Martha as I used to be. I only say that, of course, without her present. In person I’m sure she’s intimidating as hell.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Bang! Smash!

It was raining when I got up this morning, but I didn’t really think anything of it until I was walking toward my car and almost skated down the steps. Tentatively, I cleared the ice from my windows and checked the state of the parking lot, and the guy upstairs and I both felt like it was ok to leave. I figured I would just drive slowly and carefully, and everything would be fine.

Everything was not fine.

rear ended

The girl up in front started to skid, so she stopped dead in the middle of the road even though there was a church parking lot right there that she could turn into, and she proceeded to sit there with her flashers on. I came over there hill, but couldn’t get over because the other cars wouldn’t let me. I hit the same patch of ice and was about to skid into her when I angled to the right and ran my front wheel onto the curb. This stopped me from hitting her, but I couldn’t get off the curb until she moved her car, and she wouldn’t move her car, so I was stuck.

Then another car came over the hill. The cars in the other lane wouldn’t let her over, either, and she didn’t think to go for the curb like I did. Instead she tried to steer around me and stop at the same time, but she ended up smacking her passenger door into my back bumper instead.

more rear ending

The girl who hit me was really nice, and we traded insurance information. There were so many accidents this morning that the police said they weren’t coming since no one was hurt, so when the girl in front finally moved her car I drove away and the girl did, too. I turned around in the church lot and came home to assess the damage.

scrape and crack

The scrape and cracked light look like the only damage, but my insurance thinks they may just replace the whole bumper if that scrape won’t buff out. We’ll have to see how it goes when I take the car in to the dealer to get an estimate.

How’s everyone else’s day going?

Friday, January 18, 2008

Mr. Sassy-fraud

Someone decided to gain attention by playing sick, it seems. He's fine this morning.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Is there an ichthyologist in the house?

Mr. Sassyfins has been floating on his side all night.


When I walk toward the bowl he swims down to the bottom for a few seconds, but then goes back to the side floating again.

please don't die

I’m worried that in the morning he’ll be dead and I’ll be alone.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


I’ve had a bad cold for about two weeks, so tonight I made a very low effort dinner out of things in the refrigerator. Surveying my available supplies, I discovered part of a mozzarella prosciutto roll, some garlic stuffed olives, and the can of crescent rolls.

Three steps later:

prep work