Monday, February 4, 2008
This past weekend was a good one. It was relaxing and productive on many fronts. Friday night we had pizza and watched Stardust. It was a cool movie if you like magic and fantasy..and all three of us do. Saturday we looked at a house on 12.9 acres that is a little further out than we are now. The property was fabulous. It had lots of out buildings, a pole barn, many sheds and a 1 bedroom, 1 bath cottage near the main house. Tristan could stay in the cottage and have some privacy but the drive to school, and work, would be a bit more. When we stood outside the house you could hear birds and nothing else. It was so quiet and reminded us of what it was like at our place 15 years ago. But the house wasn't what we hoped. Nicely maintained and a gorgeous sun room - but the stairs for the 2nd level were so steep a billy goat would have a run for his money. It just wasn't a perfect fit but the property...so beautiful. So, we'll not be moving from Squirrel Head Manor compound and that's fine too. We can always put in a sun room and make other renovations.
Sunday I worked a long time on the biographies. It was one of my more productive days and today I will making cosmetic changes to the layout. I also looked over all the pictures of our vacation in Ireland and it makes me want to organize them by the day trips we took. Right now they are identified by numbers. Here are some of my favorite days. The Cliffs of Moher, Clonmacnoise and Rock of Cashel. I think Doug and Tristan's favorite day was the one between cottages. That definitely was one of the best - the Rock of Dunamase and Roscrea. I'll have to sort those out later and label them properly.
Sunday afternoon we cooked lots of food. I made a big pot of chicken noodle soup for lunch this week and a huge pan of lasagna for dinner. Lots of leftovers. The soup is a favorite.
Soup - Slowly melt 3 tablespoons of butter in large pot. Add chopped carrots, onion, celery and garlic. While this simmers take cooked chicken and cut in small pieces. (Last night I just baked some boneless chicken thighs that were lightly tossed in garlic infused oil.) When veggies are soft, add chicken broth. Use enough broth to accommodate noodles and added chicken. Let this simmer about 15 minutes then add noodles and chicken. Yummy.
Depending on the leftover chicken you use the soup will always have a different taste. One time we had leftover grilled chicken that had marinaded in a key lime juice - that was great soup!
Lasagna -cook Italian sausage( out of the casings) with a chopped onion and several cloves of chopped garlic. When the sausage is crumbled and brown, add a 28 oz. can of diced tomatoes, 15 oz. can of tomato sauce, half cup of red wine, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Let this simmer while you cook the lasagna noodles.
In a bowl combine 15 oz. of ricotta cheese, half cup Parmesan cheese, 1 egg, salt and pepper.
In lasagna pan put three lasagna noodles. Coat the noodles with a third of the ricotta mix. Put a third of the sauce over this and spread. Top with mozzarella cheese. Repeat for the next two layers.
Cook 45 minutes at 350 degrees. Remove and let sit 30 minutes so you can cut it properly.