I Am Back!

August 2nd, 2008 by Jeff in Life

We are all moved into the new house.  Sure, we still have some things to put away, but I (and the site) are back online.  Whew, what an adventure.  I put my foot down, which is something I do not do very often, and made a proclamation to my wife that the next time we move, we must have enough money to easily pay movers to do it!

Anywho, things are settling down and I hope to be able to get back to sharing recipes again.  I have a couple in the pipeline that I am still tinkering with (when I get time).  One thing I am really looking forward to writing about is kitchen layout.  Now that I have spent a couple weeks getting ours in order, it is fresh in my mind.

So be ready, the recipes are coming in!

Time To Ready The Herbs

September 18th, 2007 by Jeff in Life

It is starting to get that time of year, at least here in the Northeast, where you have to think about the frost. As the temperature drops, and the baseball gets more exciting, you have to make some decisions about your herbs.

As I wrote before, I had a few of my favorite herbs set up around the house in planters. Now I have to consider what I am going to do with them BEFORE we get into frost. I am one of those who does not have a west or south facing window, but the east window does catch most of the sun in the morning until around noon – 1 o’clock. This limits what I can bring inside for the winter and let grow. (More below…)

I have decided that the only herbs I will try to keep for the winter is the rosemary and the basil. The mint I will harvest and freeze, and the thyme, sage, and oregano I will dry for later use.

It is always so nice to use fresh herbs when cooking that I am really going to miss it. I have already transplanted the rosemary and basil into pots ideal for the indoors and they seem to be liking their new home. It is best to get them transplanted now and let them get used to the new pot before – (More…)

Our Vacation In The Black River Valley

July 10th, 2007 by Jeff in Life

My family and I just returned from our vacation in Boonville New York, deep in the heart of the Adirondacks. This is Black River Valley country and the home of my birth. Most of my family (on both sides) reside in the region and whenever I get a chance, I take the three hour trek upstate.

Last year about this time, my wife (fiance at the time) and I were up there getting ready to be married. The ceremony took place at my aunt Marjorie’s summer home that we like to call the riverhouse. It is a small camp style home resting right on top of the black river. In fact, you could sit on the back deck and cast a fishing line into the water if you wanted to. It is a perfect location and for those looking for rest and relaxation, the riverhouse is where you can find it.

We decided to spend another week there this year as my aunt invited us to stay there. After such a crazy year, it was a godsend. Nice warm days where the kids could play in the river, roam the shaded woods, or just look for childhood trouble were abundant. The nights were cool, but not cold, and usually we enjoyed a campfire outside and/or a fire on the hearth inside.

We entertained a few times while at the riverhouse. We had my aunt – (More…)


Where Have You Been Jeff?

May 31st, 2007 by Jeff in Life

I know, I know, I haven’t been around much this week. It is a very busy one here. My stay at home job has turned more to a stay-online-in-the-office-all-day job lately. This doesn’t mean I haven’t been cooking it is just that I have lacked the time to create or remember anything new.

Honestly, I have just been cooking my normal recipes like you see here on the site because I haven’t had time to come up with anything new.

I do have some things in the pipeline that I will be working on to share as far as recipes go.

The herbs and tomatoes have been taking off. Since my home does not have a spigot, I have been watering a lot by hand. Since most of my plants are potted, this means I am watering every 2-3 days, especially the tomatoes. They just crave water.

I decided that I will probably move the single tomatoes into the ground even though I would rather not. It is cheaper than buying large planters, and the watering will be less. I will be keeping some of the ones in the larger pots where they are.

The herbs are working out just great. The only thing I am not really harvesting as I need it, is the rosemary. I am letting those plants grow a bit larger before I start pruning. It is so – (More…)


Lack Of Global Warming Wreaking Havoc On Herbs

April 12th, 2007 by Jeff in Life

A few weeks ago I posted an article on how it was time to start your herbs for the season. Normally at the beginning of March this is the case, however if you live in the Northeast, this year seems to be a bit different.

As I look out my window in my New York home, I can’t help but feel a little depressed that it is April 12th and it is snowing outside. With all of this talk about global warming, I find my large picture window in my kitchen packed with pots with all of my started herbs. I swear that my basil plant is about one day from shouting “I want to go outside!”

I have had to attach a light over the large window sill so some of the herbs have enough light so they avoid reaching and stalk out too much. I have all my planters sit at the ready to be filled with dirt and put into the sun.

I can’t imagine what the local garden shops are going through right now. By now I am usually buying bags of potting soil, picking out herbs that I either forgot to start or for some reason just didn’t take. There really is no point yet as I just do not have enough sun inside to host all of them.

Checking some of the weather sites on-line gives no hope either. Most – (More…)


Excuse Me Your Highness, Please Bag Your Groceries!

February 23rd, 2007 by Jeff in Life

Part of the cooking world is preparation.  A big part of that is going to the supermarket(s) and shopping for items you are going to need not only in day to day living, but even for those new recipes your working with.

Since I primarily work from the home office, I usually get stuck with this duty.  Heck, I do most of the cooking I kind of enjoy it since I know what I need to get the job done.

Almost every other time I go to the grocery store, I end up behind a certain type of woman.  I haven’t seen a man act like this, so just using my experience, I will concentrate on the guilty women! 🙂

What kind of woman am I talking about?  The one in line, in front of you, who has a shopping cart full of stuff. As her little items zoom by on the belt; they arrive to the cashier who “beeps” them along and they begin to pile up at the end of the counter.  Standing there with the look of disgust on her face like she just stepped barefoot into the dogs business, she waits until her last item is processed.  She pays for her groceries and just stands there watching the cashier bag all of her stuff.

Meanwhile, you, and now a growing line of others, are staring at this woman with only one wish.  “God, please don’t send me to Hell if – (More…)


Can You Survive The Red Death?

February 16th, 2007 by Jeff in Life

Quite a few years ago, my job at the time had me staying at a hotel in Stroudsburg PA. and being a young single man this usually meant I was seated at their bar come the evening. After a few months, me and many from my company became good friends with the bar and hotel staff.

One of the bartenders, Patty, introduced me to a drink that has ended many a night early for those who have come in contact with it. Red Death is one of those clever drinks that unless you are in the know, you would have no idea there was any alcohol in it until it was too late.

My impression has always been that it tastes like those Flintstone vitamins we used to take when we were kids. A super sweet drink that anyone can enjoy, but if you drink it too quick, or in large quantities, be prepared to forget much of what happened.

I have also seen the drink referred to as a red devil, but there are other drinks with that name. To me, it will always be called Red Death and usually at least once a year I find an occasion to make up a pitcher of this and share it with friends.

Sloe Gin
Southern Comfort
Orange Juice

Mix all of the alcohol in equal parts into a shaker filled with ice. Add a splash or two of orange juice and you – (More…)


Great! It Isn’t Just Me: Men Love To Cook!

February 9th, 2007 by Jeff in Life

There once was a time when the kitchen was a woman’s domain. Sure, all of your top chefs have usually been dominated by males, but the trend of men cooking just for the fun of it is seriously on the rise.

Yesterday I opined on why it is I love cooking and wouldn’t you know it, the next day the Herald News comes out with an article about how more and more men are being drawn to cooking, or as they call it: ‘inspired cooking’.

I found it interesting how they mentioned that many mens magazines that in the past had little to no mentions of cooking in them are now offering recipes for meals, drinks, and the like. I was surprised to see in the article that they have found that many men are getting into baking bread. This has recently become a hobby of my own. It came about more out of pallet necessity rather than any inspiration. The local shop here has horrible bread and to drive 10 miles for a decent loaf to me seemed a bit ridiculous. I started making my own so I could have a decent sandwich once in a while.

The article did hit on a major factor in why men are turning to cooking more and more. It is no real surprise because this is why men do many things: Women love it. I – (More…)


Why Men Like Me Love To Cook

February 9th, 2007 by Jeff in Life

I was recently asked by a friend of mine why it is I like to cook so much.  He eluded to the fact that most men don’t cook, or at least enjoy it as much as I do.  I had never really given it that much thought before.  I thought about it for a few days, mostly while I was cooking to be honest and I think I have come to a few conclusions.

At an early age, I found that I was deprived of a couple things that most everyone else I knew had.  I was tested and it was proved that I was red green color blind.  No wonder why all my finger painting looked worse than all the other kids.  I remember my mother laughing out loud when I answered her question “So what does your teacher look like” and I told her that she had green hair.  This “handicap” if you will, really stopped any artistic pursuits during my youth.  I never learned how to draw, and to this day any attempt I make at drawing makes the average three year-olds paintings look like Michelangelo.

I did try to learn guitar during my life and had some success but in the end realized that although I can mechanically operate the device, I had no flare in creating anything with it.

As for singing, well, other than a few tipsy tries at the karaoke machine, it was a non starter.

I – (More…)


Our Honeymoon In New Orleans

July 31st, 2006 by Jeff in Life

After we got engaged, within minutes we decided that we wanted to honeymoon
in New Orleans. Shortly after our engagement, Katrina hit the Crescent City and
even the high water could not dissuade us. We knew that come July, the Quarter
would be ready for business and if anyone needed it, it was New Orleans!

We flew out of Albany and made it to the Louis Armstrong Intl. Airport in about
6 hours after a brief layover. We checked into the Omni Royal Hotel on the
corner of St. Louis and Royal right in the middle of the French Quarter. If you
have never stayed at a hotel in New Orleans, then you should know that most
hotel rooms in the city are quite small so we were pleasantly surprised with the
size of the deluxe room.

We decided to have dinner at the Rib Room, which is located right at the Omni.
Our host, Alan, was very pleasant and seated us promptly. We proceeded to have
the best steak in town. I had the prime rib and my wife Andrea had the fillet
mignon with the Southern Comfort glaze. As far as beef goes, this was the best
that we ate in all of the Quarter.

Before I tell you about the restaurants we dined in, I should point out that the
French Quarter is BACK! This was my third time in the Quarter and it looked
about the same as it did in 2000. The only differences that you could really see
were the crowds were – (More…)

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