I’m just barely here. Elated to finally move and now exhausted with the effort; made a bit more difficult by all of these wood floors. Oh I love them and I’ve promised myself I’m not going to treat them like precious china but still; moving furniture is more difficult and I’m sort of a try it here, no wait, try it there type before I get the look I want. I decided to take a break from it today until I can get some pads to make moving easier; boy could I use a couple of those young guys that were here last week!
I am not deep in the heart of rural Colorado but I have moved further south of Denver to a town called Castle Rock, CO and I’ll want to coordinate my errands a bit more than I used to. Running to the store used to mean 5 minutes and now it’s 15; seems minor but in the long run, at least for me, I’ll be planning better and making less of those quick trips. Yesterday I carefully made a list of the things I needed from a couple of different places; I neatly typed it up and printed it out and then I did what I worried about doing when I networked my laptop to a printer in a different room…I forgot the list!
I knew I needed Bisquick and butter from Costco but without my list I went awry and came out $200 later (and yes, forgot a couple of things!). Ah well, better to be well stocked during this cold anyhow, right? I had so many little things I wanted from
Home Depot Lowe’s (daughter just started working there as a Logistics Analyst; better change my allegiance) so I’ve decided I’ll go back later this week with that list; I know without it that I would have forgotten half of what I wanted! Bed, Bath and Beyond was on my route with one item but I also bought some inexpensive measuring cups. I have two nice pairs of stainless ones…somewhere.
Speaking of somewhere. The one box I couldn’t find? The one I took with me for my transitional stay; more important than clothes or hair dryer or makeup? It’s where I stored my Blendtec, my good knives, my Cuisinart blades, my immersion blender, my coffee grinder and well, everything I thought I couldn’t live without. I brought it here myself and I had looked EVERYWHERE imaginable or at least imaginable for where I thought I might have put it. It’s not a little box and I thought I had done a thorough job but with so many boxes piled on top of each other I kept hoping it would show. I tried to stay calm but this morning I started to lose it. Whole coffee beans were not going to work and I needed coffee. I got desperate. As in walking to the basement for the first time. There was my Christmas!! And no, I don’t mean just my Christmas stuff but my box. My treasures. Guess a mover thought he was helping. I don’t care now that it’s found; I’m just happy, happy, happy!
I love my new kitchen; it’s compact but has more cabinet and counter space and WAY more natural light than the one I left. I can actually reach those upper shelves in the cabinets too! Well, I can reach them well enough to push something on them; a stool is going to be required to get something down; I’m 6′ tall too; so I’m guessing a lot of people have to use a stool to use tall cabinet space, right? I’m really enjoying my new stove; I haven’t had a gas range in years and so far so good. It’s a freestanding range that’s a double oven and it’s working well for me. The top unit is the smaller of the two and I use it for things I used to use a counter-top oven for so I can relegate that unit to Goodwill and free up some counter space. That door to a pantry; it’s like my own personal secret garden; AMAZING how much I have in there. Now if I can just get my pot rack installed I’ll be a truly and totally happy camper! I’ll do a post with more photos later; I still have so much work to complete before the place is photo ready but like any cookaholic; the kitchen had to come first, right?
Meals so far have been eggs with hash brown potatoes and a big pot of soup so I wasn’t entirely surprised by my Costco bill. I had all my food with me during my time out of the house but I also used a lot of it; things needed to be refurbished and butter had to be bought…a whole lot of butter when you’re Costco shopping! I’ve been craving more vegetables and salads. Living in the home with a male presence saw us eat less of those and more meat. Too much meat for me! I love it but it’s not an every night thing; I can eat a big bowl of veggies and be happy as a clam and that’s what I did last night and this recipe was perfect.
When I was asked to review ‘The Fresh Honey Cookbook‘ it was a book that sounded right up my alley. I LOVE honey; I use it in a lot of recipes from barbecue sauce to dressings to shakes to cakes and cookies and like Laurie have long used it to make sweet tea in the summer. All of the recipes are inspired by honey bees, the food they pollinate, and the wonderful range of honey they produce. Highlighting a different honey varietal each month (tupelo, orange blossom, acacia, avocado, raspberry, tulip poplar, sourwood, blueberry, cranberry, eucalyptus, chestnut, and sage), beekeeper and chef Laurey Masterton offers amazing dishes made from simple, fresh ingredients. I want to try so many but last night I needed it to be something relatively simple and these green beans fit the bill. The original recipe called for Haricots Verts which is basically new baby green beans; those would be nice but I used good old regular green beans and they were great too.
Still, I can’t wait to try the Candy Roaster Squash Soup, Pork Tenderloin with Orange Blossom Honey-Mustard, Turkey Roulade in Puffed Pastry with Cranberry Chutney, Wild Salmon with a Smoky Onion Crust, Sweet Potato Salad with Sourwood Honey and Coconut Macaroons with Dried Cherries. The book also has some interesting honey-tasting tips and fascinating glimpses into the life of a beehive including why bees make honey, how it’s harvested and what all of us can do to help the bee population. This book shows an appreciation of both bees and the honey they produce and if this simple recipe is any indication; it’s a book I already love!
Green Beans with Honey Mustard Vinaigrette
- 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp honey
- 1 Tbsp course-ground Dijon mustard
- 1 cup good extra-virgin olive oil
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 lbs fresh baby green beans (Haricots Verts) - I couldn't find any so used fresh green beans that I cut in half
- Combine the vinegar, honey and mustard in a medium bowl and mix with a wire whisk. Drizzle the oil into the bowl in a thin stream, whisking constantly until well blended.Taste and correct with salt and pepper if necessary.
- Set aside.
To Cook the Green Beans:
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Fill a large bowl with ice water.
- Put the green beans into the boiling water and watch carefully (regular beans may take a bit longer than these directions for haricot verts but still; watch that color for a sign they are done). When they beans turn a bright green, immediately remove them from the pot and immerse them in the cold water which will stop the cooking process and have them retain their color.
- Once cooled, remove them from the ice water and drain in a colander.
- Arrange the green beans on a serving platter, drizzle them with the vinaigrette and serve.
I was provided with a review copy of The Fresh Honey Cookbook however all commentary is my own.