Happy Halloween!

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This one will be short and sweet (ha! pun intended) but just want to say Happy Halloween and enjoy a cookie or two, on me.

Well, if you lived nearby you could.

Our family always finds occasion to make sugar cookies and this was one of 'em. 


I love to break out the cookie cutters- there are so many cute ones to choose from, especially around this time of year.


  How cute are these?


Or these?





Oh, whoops, how did those get in there?  :)

Have a great day, be safe, and enjoy the autumn weather!

Just call me Betty...

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Crocker, that is ;)

I've been baking like cuh-razy.  Not sure why.  Cold weather perhaps?  Something about fall gets me in the mood to break out my oven mitts.  Not that they were ever dormant...but this time of year just beckons for standing in front of a warm oven and filling the home with aromas of bread, cinnamon, roasts, pies, and the like.

Don't you agree?

For example.  Today.  JUST today, my seasonal baking fetish led me to produce these:




Yeah.  Two loaves of bread, a pan of cinnamon rolls, a 9x13 Pyrex dish of monster bars, and three dozen pumpkin gingersnap cookies

And don't get me started on tonight's supper (quiche with homemade pie crust and the aforementioned cinnamon rolls...we love our breakfast-for-dinner nights!). 

So yes, baking is in full swing around these parts.

In addition to the above items procured today, this week I also made another pan of monster bars for a friend, another three dozen pumpkin gingersnap cookies (those things are, ahem, addicting), brownies...for...umm, my husband (not me, oh no, I had no part in those...), a bazillion frosted Halloween sugar cookies (stay tuned for that post!), and THE most adorable button peanut butter cookies.

Button peanut butter cookies?

Yes, another Pinterest endeavor- the inspiration came from Bakerella's Coraline Cookies. They are adorable. A-dorable. Mine were made for a sweet little boy's birthday party I'm attending this weekend. I will post photos later of the actual gathering- his mama is a decorating goddess- this party is bound to be crazy-cute. The button cookies are a part of the theme, of which is entirely focused around classic children's books.

The button cookies allude to Corduroy, a sweet book if there ever was one. Please tell me you know of it. If not, for shame. Go check it out! It's lovely. And precious. All children should be aware of it's value. It makes a bibliophile cringe when classic children's books are abandoned for things like Nintendo gaming systems and crass cartoons/comics/etc. Such a waste.

Anyway. 

Back to baking.

These cookies are cute as can be. And SO easy to make. Really.

Like I mentioned above, the original idea came from Pinterest- that place is a mine field of inspiration.  The blogger who created these adorable cookies didn't have a partiality to any peanut butter cookie recipe.  In fact, I think she used a bagged mix- which you can totally do to save time.  However because peanut butter cookies are ridiculously easy to make and generally all the ingredients are found in the cupboard, I decided to make my own and went with my Grandma's famous pb cookie recipe.  I've loved it for years; it's one of my very favorite items at our family Christmas gatherings.



Make up your choice peanut butter cookie dough and roll into little, 1" balls.
Place on a greased cookie sheet.


Bake according to recipe instructions. 
They come out looking like this:



Find yourself a soda bottle cap, like this:




Immediately after cookies leave the oven,
press flat side of the cap slightly into each cookie,
forming an indentation.



Then grab a straw, or in my case- a chopstick. 
Whatever you have lying around that can produce a small hole.
Puncture four little holes in each indentation to create a cute button-esque cookie.



How CUTE are these? 
I mean, really.





Go ahead and make yourself a good three dozen, while you're at it.



I did.
Obviously.

I'm considering dipping them in white and dark chocolate next time
and possibly weaving twizzlers pull n' peel through the button holes for maximum button-like cuteness.

What Betty-like creations have you made lately?
Any favorite baked goods this time of year?

I have many.

Be prepared!

Lunch Today: Takeout and an Autumn Treat

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Onto lunch post #2, for today's installment I decided to highlight not a leftover or a sandwich, but takeout.

Our family rarely eats out, let alone for quickie meals.  If we go out, it's usually once/month and we tend to hit local restaurants we love.  Our favorite is Red's Alehouse.  Their food is fabulous and they have quite the brewery fare as well- very yum and reasonably priced.  It's often our Sunday-for-lunch go to.

However that's a different post altogether.

This morning I happened to be getting a few groceries at my local co-op and wandered by their grab-n-go section.  Normally I avoid this area because everything always looks so darn good and I generally can't hold myself back.  Today I didn't have the fight in me to turn away.  I was not in the mood for leftovers and haven't made bread this week yet (thus a sandwich was a no-go) so opted to treat myself to whatever looked good.

Hmm, do I want the curried tofu w/quinoa?  No.  The fresh mozzarella n' tomato caprese?  Mmm, no.  The basil pesto pasta salad with artichokes?  Not really.  Then I noticed the brown rice edamame salad with roasted red pepper, green onion, sesame oil, and chili paste.  Ooooh, that sounds enticing.  I grabbed it and made my way over to the single-serving smoked goods section. 

The co-op's smoked meat-selection is phenomenal.  They boast a variety of choices but today the smoked chicken breast looked fab so I grabbed it (though almost, ALMOST opted for the smoked turkey leg, just to feel carnivorous and caveman-like). 

Happy with my lunch, I purchased my items and made my way home. 

Voila, lunch is served (love when I don't have to do the preparing!):



And I generally can't have a meal without some greenery involved:



A simple spinach salad with broccoli, cauliflower, and basalmic vinaigrette,
along with my delicious grab n' go.  Perfect.



So good.

After eating, I played with my boys a while then put 'em down for naps.  During naptime I always scan Pinterest and food blogs to see what else trips my trigger.  I noticed a recipe on one of my boards from yesterday's perusing, Pumpkin Gingersnap Cookies.  Somehow I couldn't get 'em out of my brain.  I scanned the ingredient list and, shock and awe, I had all the necessary items.

A-baking-I-shall-go.

I made them, of course.


Wow.  These things may have just surpassed my family's recipe.
That's not an easy feat. 
Plus, I like knowing there's produce in my dessert.
Makes me feel better about partaking in a half dozen few of these bad boys :)
They're small.  Don't think about it.



What's your favorite grab and go-to item/s?
Have you tried Pinterest yet?
Have a favorite fall treat?

As always, eager to hear.

What's in a name?

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Every once in a while I find a recipe in a magazine or elsewhere that intrigues me.

Generally it is something I wouldn't normally try, or just plain sounds interesting and unlike anything I normally create.  Recently while looking through Cooking Light, one of the many food mags I subscribe to, I noticed one that seemed quirky.

For our family, anyway.

However it had relatively few ingredients, all of which I had on hand, and could be made simply.  I like that combo.

I decided to try it.  Though it's one of those recipes I believe could use a more worthy title.  The name of the recipe itself sounds, well, gross. 

Ham Bread Pudding. 

Yeah.  Does that sounds disgusting to anyone else?  Maybe it's just me.  I'm normally very anti-bread pudding.  It's mushy and goopy and often  has bloated raisins somewhere inside.  NOT my dessert item of choice.    Yet the photo of this savory (not sweet) "pudding" revealed a very tasty-looking dish.  I decided to forgive the recipe's name-founder and give it a shot.  It deserved a chance.

I'm glad I did. 

This stuff is amazing.  SO amazing.  Like, melt-in-your-mouth incredible.  No goop, no mush, perfect blend of savory ham, green onion, and hearty multi-grain bread- not to mention it's nicely portioned out in individual ramekins.

I love ramekins.  Does anyone else?  I have a bit of infatuation with them.  Shh, don't tell.

Anyway.

This was a great find, loved by both my husband and two year old son (not a frequent occurrence these days) and nicely re-heated as a leftover meal.  I highly, HIGHLY recommend it.  Let's get started, shall we?

Savory Ham n' Cheddar Bread Pudding

Ingredients
-8 oz multigrain bread with seeds, cut in 3/4" cubes (it's VERY important that this is good bread, very grainy & seedy.  Please, please, do not use commercial white or wheat bread- if you do, your final product will. be. mush.!).
-cooking spray
- 3/4 Cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided
- 1/4 Cup chopped green onions, divided
- 3/4 Cup milk
- 1/4 Cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
- 3 oz ham steak, minced
- 2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
- 3 large egg whites
- 4 tsp sour cream or plain Greek yogurt (optional)

Instructions
1. Preheat oven to 375
2. Place bread cubes on a sheet pan; coat with cooking spray.  Bake at 375 for 10 minutes or until lightly toasted, turning once.  Remove from oven; cool.
3. Combine bread, 1/2 cup cheese, 3 Tbsp onions, and the next 5 ingredients (through egg yolks) in a large bowl.  Place egg whites in a small bowl, and beat with a mixer at high speed until foamy (about 30 seconds).  Gently fold egg whites into bread mixture.
4.  Spoon about 1 cup bread mixture into each of 4 (7oz) ramekins coated with cooking spray.  Divide the remaining 1/4 cup cheese and green onions evenly among the ramekins.  Bake at 375 for 20 min or until lightly browned.  Top each serving with 1 tsp sour cream or plain Greek yogurt.  Serve it up alongside some veggies and you're good to go!


Cube up your hearty, grainy bread:


 I adore grainy bread.  Adore it.


Get all your ingredients ready, cooking-show style.
Did you know the French call this "mise en place"? 
Your fact bite for the day :)


Chop up your ham.
I again used Beeler's Farm ham steak.
I love that place.  Pork from a few miles down the road.
Nothin' beats that!



 Mix up all your ingredients in a bowl.



 Portion the mixture out into your adorable ramekins.
I love ramekins.
Even the name is cute.
Okay, I'm done.



Top with cheese and more green onion.
Doesn't that look good?
It's not even baked off yet.
Wait for it...



Ahhh there she is. 
Perfect with a side of garden fresh green beans and a big ol' sweet potato w/butter and a touch of maple syrup.
 


Trust me on this one, folks.
It's an incredibly satisfying, tasty meal.
The stick-to-yer-ribs kind.

I'm glad I didn't judge the dish by the name.
What a sad loss that would have been.
Though I think they should pay me to name their dishes...
Just a thought.

Cooking Light, are you out there?
I'm available for hire.


My First Pinterest Endeavor...

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****UPDATE**** After eating it I found the original recipe (from Pinterest) to be far too sweet for my taste.  Next time I will cut down the sugar to 1/4 cup.  With the Hershey's bar, sugar, sweetened condensed milk, and chocolate chips it was just. too. much.  I like sugar but not to the extent that it kills my tastebuds!  I'd also maybe swap out the chocolate chips or the Hershey's Cookies n' Creme bar for a dark chocolate variety to make it slightly less overpowering.  But you be the judge...

For those of you who haven't yet discovered Pinterest, well, you might want to look into it.  It's an ingenius cataloging system of epic proportions.  You can "pin" just about anything from wool socks to poems to exotic animals- anything that interests you, really.  Many use it for DIY inspiration, kids activity ideas, and my personal fav- recipes.

The day I dove head first into my pinning frenzy I think I tagged about 30 recipes.  Then I went back and deleted about 20.  Then I added another 30.  I can't seem to find a middle ground :) 

The majority of my pins?  Sugar-laden items.  Somehow I always find myself "pinning" late at night when my chocolate cravings seem at their peak.  Bad. Idea.

Thus, I have about a bazillion desserts I'd like to try but hadn't yet found the time to test 'em out.

Until today.

I made the first dessert I ever pinned this afternoon and OH. MY. I can't wait to eat it.  That's right, I haven't actually tried it yet.  Apparently when you make something for a group function it's customary to actually WAIT until that function takes place to eat it.  Who made that rule anyway?

I don't like it.

Oh well, I will just wait and DROOL until then.

What did I make?

This bad boy:




Uh-huh.  Drooling yet?

I want it NOW.  But alas, I will wait.  I guess.

I'll let you know how it tastes.

What about you? 
Have you made any Pinterest recipes yet?
I feel this new social network is the start of something fabulous...

Cure for the Common Cold

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Some days you just need a good old fashioned meal.  Something soul-warming, heating your insides slowly while you savor each bite.

I had one of those days today.

I'm fighting off a small head-cold and nothing sounded better than, well, what else? 

Chicken noodle soup.  But the hearty kind.  I'm not an all-broth-no-substance kind of girl.  I need chunky, stewy, thick, stick-to-your ribs soup.  Or, as Rachael Ray likes to say, "stoup". 

I've made many-a-chix noodle concoction over the years, some thicker than others.  Our family favorite is an almost gravy-like stew poured over flaky, buttery biscuits (this one is perfect for a post-hiking meal in the mountains).  However I wanted this version to be a little more soup-like, able to be sopped up with a few good slices of wholesome grainy bread.

A few weeks ago, while perusing the shelves at my local library I wandered over to the discard shelf.  I often scan it, nabbing whatever seems enticing, and that particular day I found a steal.  Gina and Pat Neely's first cookbook, "Down Home with the Neelys".  If you've never seen Gina and Pat's show on the Food Network, it's pretty hilarious.  They are a sweet, loveable southern couple who like to give on-air smooches and genuinely have a heart for the food they make.  My kind of people.  Thus, finding their cookbook on a lowly library discard shelf was akin to discovering a diamond in the rough.

And so it was.

There are a ton of great recipes in that thing.  Many of them are southern-inspired and about half include BBQ sauce (their homemade recipe of which I HAVE to make soon) but don't let that dissuade you, each one sounds delish.  I've tried a few in the past week but the one I'm about to share is by far my fav.

Their recipe for Mama Jean's Chicken Noodle Soup

After suffering for a good week with this nasty cold, I decided it was time to try it.  So I did.

And OH I'm glad for it.  It's the perfect balance of stewy and brothy, light enough to have an extra helping of bread on the side but filling and satisfying.  It's now at the top of my list.  However, I did change a few things (I usually do, ha).  First, to make it a bit richer, I added 1/3 cup of heavy cream.  I like my soup creamy.  I also didn't have the full amount of frozen peas so I threw in some frozen lima beans as well to make up for it.  Nobody noticed.  I like limas.  Don't discriminate.

Second, I didn't feel like making up the chicken first so I decided to buy a pre-baked rotisserie chicken from my local co-op.  Those things are SO flavorful and a cinch to pick up while shopping (and entirely prepared at that!).  And they are just pretty. 

See? 

I shredded it up and, voila!  Chicken's done.


Refer to the recipe link above for all the steps and ingredients. 
There aren't many- which makes this stuff even more fabulous-
it's simple, easily prepared, and chalk-full of flavor.

And yummy to look at.



And even yummier to eat.
Dish up a bowl for each of your family members...



And make LOTS extra to freeze for later,
I do this with nearly every recipe now that I have a deep-freeze.


Now that my cold is gone, I'm going to make this stuff more often.
And give due credit to its immune-boosting powers.

Try it, you'll be glad you did.


Breakfast for Dinner. Or Lunch.

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A few nights ago we had our weekly "breakfast for dinner". Breakfast is my husband's favorite meal and easy-peezy to whip up quickly. I love it because if there are leftovers I can have 'em for breakfast the next morning! Or lunch, which is what I did today.

What did we have this week?

Quiche, my friends. I've highlighted my recipe in the past. This quiche is extremely easy to make, and ingredients can be swapped out for a variety of different choices. Normally we go with the crab/spinach/Parmesan recipe, however, this week we differed from the norm.

I had some leftover Beeler's ham and Nasonville Dairy sharp cheddar cheese (remember my sandwich the other day?) so decided to use 'em up- perfect ingredients for quiche.

Thus, our supper was born.

I used the same recipe I normally do, swapping out the crab for ham and the Parmesan for cheddar. Instead of spinach I used broccoli. Also, going with the new challenge I've set upon myself (to not used processed/pre-packaged items as much as I can help it), I decided to make my own pie crust, rather than buy the Pillsbury variety- which you can totally still do! No pressure, seriously. However, I've realized pie crust is pretty darn easy to create, especially when you use Ina's version. Also- you can make a bunch, freeze it in individual portions, and have crust ready whenev! It's pretty sweet.

Ta-da. Breakfast for dinner. Here's how it goes (follow the link above for exact portions of ingredients).

Get your pie crust ready
Mine's not pretty-looking. I'm going for taste at this point.
Someday I'll channel my inner-Martha and tackle pretty pie crust.
Until then, this will have to suffice.



Dump on your cheese.

Add your protein choice.

Then comes the greenery.
Next dump on your milk/egg mixture


Make sure to shield the crust to prevent over-browning.
I like to use one of these but if you don't have one, you can always use tinfoil.
Bake at 400 for 45 min or so, until center is slightly jiggly, but not overly so.
Take the quiche out and top with a little more cheese, place back in oven 5-10 min longer to melt, then remove.
Let the quiche sit on the counter for about 10 min to set.


Isn't she lovely?

Serve her up with some whole grain toast n' butter and a side salad, if you wish.


Perfectly delightful, easy meal.
And now you don't even have to make breakfast the next morning.
Bonus!

What's your favorite B4D?

Livin' La Vida Locavore.

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I'm a reader.  For all those who know me, that's a BIT of an understatement.

I devour words.  Yes, that's more like it.  I read everything.  Articles, newspapers, magazines, blog posts, fiction/non-fiction books upon books upon books (even chick-lit, yeah I go there and, gasp, like it). 

I read it all.

Normally I tend to prefer fiction, there is nothing like diving headfirst into other worlds- worlds more romantic than stark fact, truth, black and white, realism, bleh.  I tend to like wordy Brit lit (think Austen, Dickens, etc) and dark, ominous plots n' settings (think Rebecca, Jane Eyre, and Wuthering Heights).  I'm broody.  But I also enjoy uplifting, go-get-'em books and everything in between.

I normally hate investigative journalism. 

Hate. It.  I will partake if someone forces me with duct tape and an uzi (or an "F" grade...I had many college profs who thrived on endless fact drones who made their money off undecipherable citations...), but normally I will never, NEVER go near anything close to it.

I don't like fear-mongers.  I dislike when someone spews facts at me in order to stir up terror or worry.  Because, well, I am a worrier and, darn it, if I don't have to worry I ain't gonna.  There's enough to worry about in this world, especially as a mother of two darling little boys.  No, I will not take an optional side of worry, thankyouverymuch.

However.

When it comes to food, I devour (not literally) every piece of info I possibly can.  Why?  Because I eat food.  It affects me.  I want to know about it.  If it's going into my body, become- literally- a part of me, I feel I should have some knowledge of what that substance is and how it might benefit or hurt me.

I want to know what's in my food. Every. Single. Molecule.  Where did those ingredients come from?  How did they get here?  How were they grown/raised?  What sort of effort was involved in the whole process?  Who am I supporting by purchasing it?

Yeah.  I want to know it all.

I'm inspired by people like Rick Bayless, Alice Waters, Mark Bittman, Michael Pollan, and now....Barbara Kingsolver.

Google 'em, you'll be glad you did.

Barbara, whom you may know from such famous novels as The Poisonwood Bible, The Prodigal Summer, and The Bean Trees, recently published her own personal memoir, this book:



Entitled Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, Kingsolver and husband Steve, along with their two daughters decided to spend one full year living entirely off what they could grow themselves on their Viginia farm, and/or what could be purchased from local growers within a nearby radius.  If the food wasn't from those parts, or out of season, they didn't eat it.

Period.

Inspiring much?  Yeah.  Talk about rough.  It doesn't sound SO bad until you actually read what they had to give up.  It really makes you think twice about how far food goes to get to your plate and the ridiculous means by which we go about getting the food we crave.

But most of us, myself included, often don't dwell on our food origins.  We grab that box of chicken broth from the soup section, or that ground beef from the meat counter, or those strawberries (in January!) from the produce section, and not even THINK about how they got there.  It's a "don't ask, don't tell" policy.  We don't want to know and ignorance is bliss.  Or we just don't care. 
But man- if we knew how those chickens or that cow lived (or was slaughtered, or what they were fed) to give us our broth and beef, would we think differently?  Or if we realized how many pesticides/herbicides were involved (and fuel use/costs) to get those strawberries all the way from who knows where, in the middle of winter, to our flourescent-lit fruit section- would we think differently??

Some yes, many maybe, most no.  People don't care.

Or do they?

I do!  I do!  Pick me!  :)

I care.  As we all should.  It just doesn't seem natural or wise to have no involvement or understanding of the foods we consume every single day.  We are nutty to assume that if it says "all-natural" or "organic" or "whole-grain" or "full of fiber!" or whatever other assurances marketers use, that it's "good" for us.

Are we really that clueless?  I sure hope not.  Check yourself though- have you ever bought something just because it says "double-fiber!!" or "all-natural!" or "no high-fructose corn syrup!".  I have.  OFTEN.  But I don't really think what that means or whether the methods of actually producing the good were worthy of entering my body.

It's scary when many other countries' (France, Britain for example) national food administrations don't allow 70% or so of the chemicals and modified food products in their foods that we here in the USA do.  Why does our FDA allow these products while other nations ban them?  Because we have a very corporate-friendly government who is very much on the side of big business, huge profit margins, and, well, cheap and easy mass-production- at the expense of it's inhabitants.  But let's not have that discussion, shall we?  I could go on for hours and I already type too much!

This is something I'm very much passionate about and I feel many are simply in the dark.  But Barbara shares it all with poise and matter-of-fact prose.  She isn't fear-mongering, she doesn't incite fear or place blame, she simply tells it like it is and encourages others to learn more.  Her book is a healthy (literally) mix of investigative unveiling, gardening tips, knowledge of plants and seeds, and nutritional information about various vegetables and fruits.  It's a page-turner in ways many other informative books are not.  She isn't a fact drone, spewing statistics at the reader, but a passionate advocate on the side of farmers, locavores, and those interested in supporting folks a little closer to home.  It's a refreshing read.  And GET THIS- Are you ready?  Really, are you prepared?  [Moment of silence]...my husband is reading it.  And likes it. 

[Shockwaves]

Yeah.  He's even laughed out loud a few times.  And he is a man who has a strong affinity for Little Debbie products- cakes that have a phenomenal shelf life, almost disturbingly so.  He's getting something out of the book and is becoming more interested in the whys and hows of our nation's food.  If he can do it, anybody can.

Does this mean I'm going to give up all indulgences in the form of who-knows-what's-in-it?  No way.  Starbucks white mocha syrup is my crack.  Did I say that out loud?  We all have to have something that can't be justified!  I may or may not have had wasted ample amounts of gas to drive MILES out of my way just to indulge in a grande-iced coffee-no classic syrup- sub 2.5-pumps white mocha-light ice-in a personal cup.  Well, at least I had my own cup...I saved some plastic anyway :)  Also- sometimes you just have to eat and not. think. about what's in the food.  Velveeta anyone?  Nothing beats the pasturized processed cheese product (something about that label seems incredibly eerie) in dips, soups, and sauces.  Yeah, I just went there.

However after reading the book I've made a pledge to ban processed food from my diet, as much as I can help it.  I've vowed to use as many seasonal, local products as possible.  I've decided to do all my gift-buying this year on Etsy, or make them myself- not only to support in-nation artisans but also to cut down on fuel costs and support of big-corporations (and save money!).  Unfortunately, though, my husband is convinced our son needs a Tonka truck that I'm SURE is made in China so we'll have to fail in some areas, I suppose :)

This is my way of making a difference, of being just a drop in the bucket of a necessary change.

What do you think?  Do you consider the deets of your eats?  Where your products originate?  What's YOUR crack?  Ha.

Share!

What's For Lunch?

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For a while now I've wanted to do a simple daily post.

Nothing fancy, nothing wordy- just a simple photo and explanation of, well, my lunch.

Why?  Because I always wonder what people eat for their midday meal.  I mean, don't you?  Okay, don't answer that.  If you're a foodie, like myself, you often have meals on the brain and I find lunch to be my favorite.  It's casual and versatile.  Often you have to be creative-especially if you have kids and don't want to eat grilled cheese every. single. day.  But even grilled sandwiches can be a blank slate of creativity.

I not only wonder what SAHMs have for lunch (since really, we generally either have too much time to think about it, or not enough time to actually create a wholesome one...you know how it goes), I also wonder about businessmen, nurses, teachers, construction workers- what do THEY eat?  Especially when many of those either pack a lunch or eat out.  Particularly if they pack a lunch- what's within the brown bag?

It's kind of like sneaking a look at what's in people's carts at grocery stores.  I've often wondered if checkers and baggers size everyone up by what's going in the plastic sacks.  It's interesting, and anyway- how else would you spend your time pulling long hours putting food in bags?  I'd totally create stories in my mind about where the people live, how they eat, what jobs they have, what goes in their kids lunches, what sorts of gatherings they have, etc. 

I'd totally love that job.  Not gonna lie. 

In fact, I actually worked at Starbucks last year for the summer and loved it.  Why?  Because you can tell a lot by a) What people order  b) How passionate people are about their favorite beverages/foods and c) How RUDE people can be to service workers.

But let's dwell on the former two, shall we?  :)

Anyhow- I love to know people's food passions/obsessions/idiosyncracies.  You can tell a lot about a person by what they consume.

Thus back to my lunch.

I love lunch.  It forces me to be creative with what's on hand.  Also, these days with two little people underfoot, don't have a lot of time to make up something special so it has to be what I have in the fridge or freezer- often leftovers, a sandwich of some sort, or something that can be zapped.

THANK YOU to whoever invented the microwave- that thing is a Godsend.

So...what was on the menu today? 

This beautiful thing:


A delightful ham and cheddar sandwich.

I'll break it down for you.

-The bread is hearty 7-grain sandwich bread from my local co-op
-Also from the co-op is the AMAZING delicious Beeler Farm's uncured (local) ham, sharp cheddar cheese from Nasonville Dairy in nearby Wisconsin, organic spinach, and stone-ground mustard.
-Tomatoes from my mother-in-law's garden and red onion from my local farmer's market.

Simple.  Easy.  Delish.

I also had a side of green grapes.  And, you know, one of these:



For all my "healthy" and "locavore" endeavors I have to indulge in one multinational corporate vice.  Sbux iced coffee with white mocha syrup.  It's utterly divine. And SO necessary to keep up with energetic kiddos.  There, I have a weakness- are you surprised?  Don't be, I have many!  :)

That's my lunch for today.  What's yours??

Seriously, share.  Even if it's just PB n' J, I'm the weirdo who wants to know :)