After 6 months at my new job I am still finding new reasons to love my job. Early last week, I was told I have 56 hours of vacation to use before the end of the year. First of all, how did that happen? I have only been there since april. How did I get all that vacation time? Every other job I have had I had to be there a year before I got any vacation time. I was really excited because I need a vacation.
Second of all, they expect me to take every minute of it. All I had to do was enter it in the system and, two seconds later it was all approved.
At my old job, they automatically refused all requests for vacation or time off. You had to get with your manager and beg for they time off which you earned and would still frequently turn you down. It was frustrating and not right. I am so glad that place isn’t my problem any more.
So what is confit (pronounced kon fee)? Confit is, basically, anything cooked at a low temperature while covered in some kind of fat. This style of cooking renders the food so soft and succulent and, in the case of garlic confit, leaves you with a lovely garlic infused olive oil. So what do I use garlc confit for? Well, just about any form of savory cooking I do in a day. I use both the oil and garlic when I fry eggs, saute vegetables, make salad dressings. I smear a couple cloves on my toast, add cloves to soup and sauces. The possibilities are pretty near limitless.
I am going to be honest with you. This not a cheap recipe to make with all that olive oil but it keeps up to two months in the fridge so you have plenty of time to is every drop of oil and every clove of garlic.
From The No Crumbs Left Cookbook
4 cups peeled garlic cloves
3 cups extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
2 sprigs rosemary
2 bay leaves
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium baking pan with sides, spread the garlic out evenly. Cover the garlic with olive oil, making sure every clove is covered with oil. Tuck the basil leaves, rosemary sprigs and bay leaves among the garlic cloves.
Bake tbe garlic for 35 minutes or until soft and light brown. Turn off the oven and open the oven door, let the garlic and oil cool to room temperature. The original instructions said to remove the pan from the oven but I really don’t want 350 degree oil pouring over my hands. Once the garlic is completely cool, store it in a glass jar, making sure the cloves are completely covered in oil. Store in the fridge for up to 6 weeks.
Guys, I have a new cooking for two resource for you. Its called Fix-It And Forget-It Cooking For Two. Thats right, its a crockpot for two cookbook. I was really excited to find this cookbook for you all because I know you wanted crockpot recipes. It seems especially appropriate now that fall is here.
Things I Like:
1. The recipes are not complicated.
2. The recipes are submitted by real people so they are recipes for how real people eat.
3. The cooking times are realistic. Gone are the days you can plug in your crockpot and let it cook for an unlimited number of hours while you are gone to work. Modern crock pots run too hot to do that. The cooking times in the book reflect that and as long as you follow them don’t over cook your food.
4. The recipes I have tried taste good.
5. The recipes make a decent amount of food for one or two.
Things I Don’t Like:
1. The recipes use more processed ingredients then I like to use, especially cream of somethings soups. It is fairly easy to find less or unprocessed substitution using the recipes on my blog if that concerns you.
BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches
From The Fix-It and Forget- It Cooking For Two Cookbook
1lb pork loin
1/4 cup thinly sliced onion
1/2 cup ketchup
1 TBS apple cider vinegar
2 tsp dry mustard
1 TBS brown sugar or molasses
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp chili powder
Spray the liner of your slow cooker with non stick cooking spray. Place the onion and pork loin in the liner.
In a small bowl. Combine the ketchup. Apple cider vinegar, mustard powder, brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, cumin. salt and chili powder. Pour the mixture over the pork. Cook on low 7 hours.
When the pork is done, remove from the slow cooker and shred with 2 forks. Serve on buns.
No, we aren’t going to dry rub our bearded dragon and cook him. This is my new friend, River. He is my friend Ess’ bearded dragon.
Ess rescued him from a bad situation a few weeks ago. I have never had any experience with an reptiles except for snakes and honestly, I am not a fan. So I totally didn’t expect to fall in love with River.
Things I learned about bearded dragons today:
1. With all the spikes bearded dragons have on their bodies they aren’t… well… spikey. Their spikes are actually very soft and pliant.
2. You can tell a bearded dragon upset or angry because the area under his chin turns black. It can vary from a little black, i am annoyed with you, to completly solid black, I am so angry with you I could rip off your head and spit down your throat. I have never seen River’s throat turn more than a little black. He is just too chill to loose it like that. I have seen pictures of it, however, and it is a little scary.
3. I don’t know if this is true of all beared dragons but is of this one, River loves to sit with you and cuddle.
I look forward to getting to know more about bearded dragons, in general and River, specifically, in the future.
So don’t use this dry rub on your bearded dragon, use it on a piece of steak instead.
Steak Dry Rub
Adapted from Allrecipes
1 tsp salt
1 tsp paprika
3/4 tsp onion powder
3/4 tsp garlic powder
P3/4 tsp oregano
3/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp cumin
Mix all the ingredients together. Store in a small, airtight container.
When ready to use, generously spread spice mixture on both sides of the steak and cook to your desired doness. Makes enough rub for two 4 ounce steaks.
This is what happens when I get snowed in by a blizzard on my day off. I sit around feeling sorry for myself because all the things I had planned on doing got cancelled then I pull out my copy of Mark Bittman’s How To Bake Everything and start finding some recipes to adapt. Then I get in the kitchen and bake. I am still not happy about the snow but now I have cookies so it doesn’t seem nearly as bad. Lol.
These aren’t soft, fluffy cookies. They are actually on the flat and crisp side of cookies. They go nicely with a glass of milk for dunking. Use any nutbutter you have on hand. I used almond butter.
Adapted From Mark Bittman’s How To Bake Everything
1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
4 TBS butter, softened
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup nutbutter
1/2 tsp vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking soda. Mix well. In another medium bowl, cream togethet the butter, brown sugar and white sugar, until light and fluffy. Add the nutbutter, egg and vanilla and beat until well combined. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture in three batches throughly mix them together before adding more flour mixture. Drop by tablespoonsful, 2 inches a part onto a baking sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool on the pan 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
WHOSE FREAKING IDEA WAS IT TO HAVE OUR FIRST BLIZZARD IN OCTOBER???!!!
Sunrise Spice (Whole 30)
Adapted From The Well Fed 2 Cookbook
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground marjoram
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/8 tsp ground all spice
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. This recipes makes enough spice to flavor 1/2 pound of meat and a ton of vegetables. I also use some of the spice blend sprinkled over my eggs and vegetables.