Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Cooking with Royalty

Tonight Ella helped me cook dinner, a favorite activity of hers. I hate to admit it, but these days it rarely happens. The frequency of her wanting to help hasn't diminished, but my patience has. I'm always rushing to get dinner on the table and any task that involves a 3 year old seems to take 3 times as long. Today though, Lily was taking a long nap and Ella was glued to my side, wanting to soak up this rare "Mommy alone time". I told her I had to get started with dinner; usually her cue to go play. This time she pulled over a chair, which meant she wanted to stand on it and help me cook. She had the hugest grin and an adorable tiara; how could I resist? Everything I was asking Ella to do, she was doing with such enthusiasm. "Ok Mommy", "yes Mommy", "yum Mommy this is going to be delicious".

We made a kitchen sink salad which is becoming one of her absolute favorites (see recipe below). Also - Baked lemon pepper chicken and tuscan bread with oregano and feta cheese.

Don walked in and the house smelled yummy, his two girls were giggling together and listening to Miles Davis. Ella had already set the table. He said it was a perfect sight.

Mommy Mantra: "Make your kids an incredible Part of your life, not your WHOLE life."

From now until Christmas I will be reviewing "budget bottles" of red wine. I will then declare my favorite budget bottle around Christmas. The criteria - red wine between $8 and $12. What qualifies me to review wine? Nothing except my love of drinking it. October to December is my season of red wine! So I'd like to pay homage.

Wine of the Week
Vinos De Arganza Flavium Mencia 2008
; a recommendation from my local wine shop, Grape Culture. At $11/bottle this is an amazing find. I've been in a deep Malbec phase, but I thought I'd give this a shot. It is deep and rich and has such a smooth texture. The nose is rich and yet fruity. Who am I kidding? It is just plain delicious. Right now I am longing for Manchego.
but if you are local go over to the guys at Grape Culture in Saint James, NY. They rock.

Kitchen Sink Salad
1 cup, Brocoli slaw from trader joes
1 cup, 8 ingredient chop salad from trader joes
handful of golden raisins
chopped handful of almonds salted almonds
one peeled, chopped apple
1/2 cup gorgonzola crumbles
1/4 cup thick blue cheese dressing combined with 1/4 cup olive oil

Toss it all in a bowl with salt and pepper and gobble it up! Sounds weird, but so yummy.

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