Monday, December 22, 2008

Baby it's cold outside.....

Yep... that's minus one. That was the temp, not even the wind chill this morning. COLD.

Let hubby take the truck to work, and there was NO way I was going to venture out into the cold in my old car, the Cougar, in this weather.

First order of the day was an important one.... Secret Santa Present Opening Day!!!

Some online friends (ok, all gals) and I have been doing it for a few years, and it's fast becoming a favorite part of the holiday.

Among other things, I got this beautiful set of ornaments....

A nice martini and cocktail shaker. Fits in right next to my Vegas ornaments....

I also got some silicone pot holders, which I have been wanting for awhile but haven't bought since I didn't need to have a "don't you already have enough pot holders?" discussion with the hubby. (Ok, I have... lemme see... eight potholders currently? Only six are my "everyday" ones, the others are old... wait a sec... lemme see... I have more older ones... I think I have about ten pot holders. So, um, yeah, the hubby may have a point. But my new potholders still rock and I wish I'd gotten them long ago.)

I can't wait to also use them to open some jars. My hands are utter crap and their grippy-ness helps me out.

Next order of the day was to make lunch... split pea soup. I happen to be someone who likes split pea soup, and it's one of those things that is REALLY hard to screw up. I think I followed an Ina Garten recipe but also threw in a proscuitto end that I've had in the freezer for awhile.

I started off with just yellow split peas. I know the recipes I read mentioned skimming would be involved. I recall wondering "what am I going to have to skim off?"

Oh, yeah. Ew. Um, that stuff. I skimmed that stuff.

Halfway thru cooking, I threw in some split green peas. About 20 minutes before it was done, I took out the proscutttio end and got as much meat off that as I could, and then added that to the soup.

Mmmm. That and two slices of rye toast was a wonderful lunch on a cold, cold, COLD day.

Also on the agenda was making buckeyes (since they come so highly reviewed). Problem number one.... forgot to get new batteries for my kitchen scale. I estimated amounts as much as I could.

The peanut butter/butter/powdered sugar mixture in the food processor....

And the finished one that I put in the fridge for me to try....

Verdict? Good. I actually recall these as being the only cookie my Grandma Mary actually ever "made". She gave us "homemade" cookies, but we all knew they came from the local Italian bakery. I still need some work on my "coating" technique, I needed to melt more chocolate chips halfway thru. I also should have bought some wax paper rather than trying to put them on greased plates... they kinda stuck a bit. Oh well. Most of them looked good. And hubby had fun making a dent in the "not pretty" ones I set aside.

Also on the agenda, making mini meatballs to go in some "it looks like ketchup, it tastes like ketchup, but by golly, it's not ketchup!" sauce on Xmad Day when the parents come over.

Sigh. I love baked meatballs. Never frying a meatball again. EVER.

And a lovely little shot of the pot holder in action. The way my hand have been currently, with a new storm front coming thru every couple days, it's nice to not have to have my hand in an oven mitt for some tasks.

For dinner, it was bagel dogs. Action shot!!!

I actually used regular flour since I used up all my bread flour. I noticed the difference in texture, the hubby didn't.

Post-dinner, I did some Chile-Roasted Almonds for Xmas day nibbles. Super easy, and while they have a little spice on the back of your throat, totally not overpowering. Just tasty.

In addition to all that, I made some cranberry sauce, (actually to serve on my cheese plate on Xmas Day) and wanted to do some pita chips but I fell asleep on the couch playing video poker on my Palm.

And in addition to all the cooking, I also scrubbed the upstairs bath, vacuumed upstairs, got in my workout, and washed a half a million (approximate estimate) of the hubby's tee shirts. And some of my own clothes. And a load of towels.

The fun continues tomorrow... the pita chips, tiramisu and red velvet cup cakes, and prepping a baked omelete and the creme brulee french toast. Outta be no sweat.


Scarehaircare said...

Love the SS gifts! I need to take pics and post mine....

Hurricane Mikey said...

Forget the 'Buckeyes'. Just coat them all over and call them by their proper name-- Peanut Butter Balls!

Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!