Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Slight Obsession

I've a got a teensy, little problem. I buy TOO many coffee mugs. Well, actually, its just the right number by me. But my husband cries everytime he opens the cabinet and looks for his one favorite Utah mug he found at Walmart in the souvenier aisle. (He's so demitasse challenged.)
In fact, Fred has made a new rule. If I bring a new one home, I must give an old one away. Very, very, sad. Especially considering that every time I walk into a local coffee shop, every cup on the shelf starts singing The Coffee Song. If that wasn't bad enough, now there are several local vendors who show up at our downtown farmers market with tempting little vessels. Like the one above. I love the honey and brown tones, and the white fingertips where the potter held onto the cup while dipping it in the glaze. Loverly.

Or this one, with glazed petraglyphs, dripping black and tan.
Reminds me of my coffee as I love just a touch of golden honey and milk.

I found these little beauties at YOU KNOW WHERE. No handles but shaped with nice little finger indentations. These are still currently available BTW.

I like the ridges left behind on this one by the sculptor. I just can't get enough of that brown glaze.

Isn't this as beautiful as a Robin's egg? Or maybe a blue Snowy Plover egg. Snowy Plover's nest near the Great Salt Lake, you know.

I snatched up the last three of these from my farmers market favorite. I BEGGED him to recreate this in dinner dishes. No dice. Each of these cups is a slightly different size. You can so tell they are hand thrown.

And I've figured out a way to derail by husband in his sinister plot to rid me of my 37,000 coffee mugs. I will take them to a secret location where I can see them every day, touch their silky handles and sip liquid gold from their rims.
They can always use more mugs at the office.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mardi Gras Stuffed Peppers

Aren't the colors fantastic? What's that produce slogan? Eat Your Colors? Well, my, my, you must certainly fulfill a good portion of your daily requirements with this dish. My Mardi Gras Stuffed Peppers are filled with wheat berries, brown rice, onion, garlic and Italian cheeses. I add chopped Roma tomatoes on top with lemon juice and a little drizzle of olive oil, then bake. This recipe got rave reviews at home. Add a healthy dollop of your favorite marinara on top and you get your lycopene too!

When prepping for this recipe, you have a choice of using Bulgur or Wheat Berries. Maybe they are the same thing but all the research I did told me that Bulgur can just be soaked in hot water and its ready to serve. Wheat Berries, on the other hand, must be cooked ahead. Follow the package instructions or boil about 45 -55 minutes or until they are not crunchy, just firm, then drain. Make extra and throw them in salads or soup.

I bought a variety of bell peppers. Cut the tops off (about 1/2 below rim) and clean out. Remove the stem from the top and chop the leftover pieces into 1/4 inch pieces.

You will also chop one medium onion (or 1/2 if you don't like alot of onion) and chop your mushrooms into the same size pieces as the onion and peppers.

Heat 2 TB olive oil then add your chopped bell peppers, onion and mushrooms. Stir until the onions are clear. Be careful not to burn.

In a large bowl mix your wheat berries, rice, hot vegetables and cheese. Add salt and pepper. Be sure to mix the hot veggies with the rice and wheat before mixing in cheese. It will keep the cheese from clumping all together from the heat of the vegetables. Stuff your peppers, top with chopped Roma tomatoes, drizzle with oil and lemon, cover with foil and bake at 350 for 45 to 60 minutes, depending on how soft you live the bell peppers. We removed ours at 40 minutes because Fred was just too darn hungry to wait any longer! They were still crunchy but hot inside. Top with marinara.

Mardi Gras Stuffed Peppers

1 Cup wheat berries or bulgur (prepared as directed on packaging)
6 Bell peppers
4 Cups mushrooms, chopped
1 Onion, medium chopped
2 Cloves garlic minced
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp black pepper
1 Cup Italian blend cheese, shredded (usually includes Mozarella, Parmesan, Asiago, Romano)
2 Tbs lemon juice
3 Plum tomatoes, slice in half, take out seeds and wet pulp, then chop
2 Cups marinara of your choice
Bake 45 to 60 minutes in a 350 degree oven.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Silver Fork Oatmeal

Silver Fork Lodge is one of my favorite places to take visitors for breakfast in summer. The views from the deck are beautiful and they have some great food. They are famous for their sourdough starter, used for pancakes and waffles. They have fresh mountain perch and eggs, plus homemade cornbeef hash that has generous chunks of corn beef (not ground like the canned variety). I love their oatmeal. Its made from whole oats and they serve it with brown sugar, wild blueberries (you have to ask for these - an extra $1 but worth it), pecans, raisins, milk and butter.

Fred recreated this wonderful oatmeal for Mother's Day brunch. He bought granola with raisins as an extra crunchy topping. The blueberries were thawed from frozen and added a little extra blueberry juice to the mix which tasted delish. I toasted the pecans and chopped. Crunch crunch.

Silver Fork Oatmeal

Prepare your favorite rolled oats (regular, not instant or quick variety)
Serve with:

2 TB Pecans, toasted in a hot pan, then chopped
2 TB Brown Sugar
1/4 Cup Wild Blueberries
2 TB Raisins or a favorite granola
Butter, milk and honey to taste.