Groovin' in the kitchen, dancin' in Missoula.

Tag: Family

The Best BBQ Garnish

The Best BBQ Garnish

Tasty, easy, fast, and cheap! Plus, people seem to really enjoy it. I get requests for this recipe at just about every summer function with my family. It’s macque choux! (Pronounced mock shoe) My sister and I cooked at her house on the 4th of […]

Skillsets

Skillsets

Yep. Yep.  Mmmhmm. Yeah. I’ve made cakes before. Delicious, moist, fluffy cakes. Sometimes with frosting, sometimes glaze, sometimes with just a dusting of powdered sugar. But I’ve never made a layer cake.  And we all know that presentation isn’t my strong suit. I’ve always wanted […]

Catch Up

Catch Up

Hello!

Oh my gosh, it’s been so long!

You *look* fantastic!
*I can’t really see you, but knowing you, I can assume.

What have I been up to?  Oh geez, where do I start?

Well, we’ve been moving.  And that’s seriously hectic.
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Have you ever moved?  I swear things start appearing.  Literally materializing out of thin air!  You think you know how much stuff you have until you try to move from one house to another.  Just as soon as I thought we were close to being done, I’d open a closet or a cupboard and have another carload of stuff.  Plus, if I ever have to scrub walls again, I may die.

And then of course, because moving isn’t epic enough, *my* babies all graduated.
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*In full disclosure, only one of those “babies” are mine. And one of them only graduated kindergarten this year.

*Also, Nick is rolling his eyes. I can feel it. It’s cool. 

And that’s been mixed in with working, rehearsing, performing yadda yadda yadda.

But it’s great.  All of it.  I can’t believe how lucky I am.  How awesome our friends and family are.  I’m never hesitant to say that I’m loving life, but there are times when it’s truer, more real.  This is definitely one of those times.

What about you?  What have you been up to lately?  I’d love to hear from you, and let’s promise to meet like this more often!

See you soon?

Exciting Stuff Indeed

Exciting Stuff Indeed

I really do mean to post with some kind of regularity, so I apologize for disappearing. I promise that soon I will post more often. It’s just that, things have been happening.  Exciting things.  Like, big, awesome, things. We’re moving! Before you freak out, we’re […]

Content

Content

That’s not me. But that’s how I felt all weekend. You see, Farmer’s Market is back. And it was Brew Fest. I don’t drink beer (still. Shocking, I know), but I got to people watch, and dog watch, and kayak watch. I got to hear […]

Nara

Nara

I love sushi! There, I’ve said it. Now everyone knows.
Right now the vast majority of my family is cringing in disgust. If only they knew!

How on earth do I know about sushi, seeing as how I live in a land-locked state? Fortunately for us, Missoula has not one, but two excellent sushi joints. And each has not one, but two dollar nights–making dollar sushi possible four nights a week, if one is so inclined.

Of the two fine establishments, Nara Korean Barbecue & Sushi has us coming back again and again. It may have something to do with the amazing sushi:
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Or getting to watch very small people use chopsticks:
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Or getting to watch very small people not use chopsticks:
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Both of these photos were taken with a camera phone several years ago. Does that tell you how long we’ve been eating at Nara?

The staff is amazing, too. More often then not, Nick will ask the server to surprise him, rather than just ordering from the menu. They don’t get flustered or angry at him, they just smile and nod and bring something amazing from the kitchen. Now that’s service! I wouldn’t recommend doing this every time you go in, but when you’re feeling adventurous it’s definitely worth the mystery.

There are some places that, despite being a business or restaurant, make you feel like family. We walk in and we know we’re going to get an excellent meal, but we also know they won’t glare at us if we have a fussy kid–he might just get rice candy or a toy to borrow. We know that they won’t rush us out of our table, even if it’s a dollar night in July and there’s a line out the door. We know that after a hard day, nothing beats great sushi and a shot of warm sake.

Don’t feel bad if you’ve never tried sushi. Just go visit Nara out on Reserve.
Go ahead, I’ll wait. No really, go eat some sushi!

What food makes your family shudder?

Sous Chef

Sous Chef

Some jobs are just too fun hard to do alone. They require someone totally serious Who isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty. Who can handle anything, and can multitask with the best of them. Who would never hide from the tough jobs. Who isn’t […]

Sweet and Spicy Tofu

Sweet and Spicy Tofu

I made a variation on my favorite tofu marinade.  This one comes from Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point, and she’s not kidding when she calls it her Perfect Baked Tofu.  In our house, we call it candy tofu, because it’s surprisingly sweet from the honey, […]

No Bake Cookies

No Bake Cookies

No Bake Cookies have been a tradition in my family for as long as I can remember.  Perfect for when you’re absolutely dying for chocolate and peanut butter but are too lazy to put things in and out of the oven (read: PMS).  Also perfect for when you’re craving the absolute unhealthiest cookie ever.  It happens sometimes.  Everything in moderation, right?

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We were having one of those days, and my sisters were kind enough to do the “hard work” while I took photos. See if you can tell whose hands are whose…or whom’s…or hoooos…

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Lots of sugar

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And butter

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Cocoa powder

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And melting

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This is making me hungry

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Oh man, and the peanut butter

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And then the peanut butter melts in the chocolate, and it smells amazing

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And then it gains volume

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Vanilla just makes everything better

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Oh goodness. I know what I’m doing later.

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This is too easy

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They even make your refrigerator smell good

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If you have the patience to wait for them to cool, they peel right off the parchment. I don’t always have the patience. It’s chocolate and peanut butter! Don’t judge, you know you do it too 🙂

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I like looking at the bottoms, because they’re so perfect compared to the haystack-like tops

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And in my mouth it goes!

1 3/4 cups Sugar
1/2 cup  Butter
1/2 cup Milk
4 tbsp Cocoa Powder
1 cup Peanut Butter
3 cups Oats
1 tbsp Vanilla

In a saucepan, combine the sugar, butter, milk and cocoa powder.  Bring this mixture to a gentle bowl, then add the peanut butter and stir until just combined.  Remove from heat and add remaining ingredients.  Drop spoon fulls of batter onto parchment paper and place in the refrigerator or freezer until chilled.

Happy no-baking!

A Review of Helena

A Review of Helena

Ok, so not Helena, exactly.  A review of a few places we visited when we were there recently.  Generally, I’m pretty biased against Helena.  Not that there’s anything wrong with it per se, I’m just so in love with Missoula that it’s hard for me […]