Sunday, December 7, 2008

Jarlsberg Omelet Delights!

This morning, we awoke to a further sprinkling of snow atop the already generous spread left by yesterday's weather system. Besides having to take the dog out, it's a wonderful view to wake to. As I let myself and the fluffy-monster back in, the smell of fresh coffee floated through the air. The boy was making breakfast. Most excellent.

Twenty minutes later, I was greeted with this lovely eggy creation. After a single bite, I decided this particular piece of breakfast history needed to be marked down for good. So here it is, in all of it's glory.

You'll want to try this omelet for yourself. I can assure you that it is just as delicious as it looks. Of course, like all omelet creations, a little improvisation doesn't hurt. Feel free to substitute as needed. The only necessary ingredients are the Jarlsberg cheese and spinach.

Jarlsberg Omelet
serves 2

What You'll Need:
A good nonstick skillet

4 large eggs
1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
15-20 leaves fresh cilantro, shredded
1 handful spinach leaves, shredded
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt and Pepper to taste
3+ tablespoons Jarlsberg cheese, finely shredded

In a medium sized mixing bowl, crack eggs and add in heavy cream. Beat vigorously until well combined. Add in garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper. Mix well. Stir in cilantro and spinach.

Into a greased, slightly pre-heated skillet, pour your mixed ingredients. Cook gently on medium heat. Make sure heat is high enough to cook eggs, but no so high that they overcook on the bottom or cook unevenly. If the eggs begin to get tough on the bottom, your heat is too high.

Continue to cook until eggs are nearly cooked through (about 5 minutes). Using a spatula, carefully flip eggs over to finish cooking on other side. Onto newly exposed cooked side, add shredded cheese in an even layer. Allow enough time to finish eggs on other side (about 1 minute). Turn off heat and carefully fold omelet in half, encasing the layer of cheese inside.

Serve and enjoy immediately!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Completely Unrelated :: Stationary Enterprise

My, my, my. Finding a job is certainly getting more difficult by the day, isn't it?

What's that you say? It's nearly impossible?

I know!

Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present to you ... my sorta brilliant entrepreneurial idea (sorta brilliant like a MagLight being used to unpack a box of lamps). Are you ready?

I want to start an artistically-personalized, environmentally-friendly, stationary business.

*Braces for Backlash*

Okay. Settle down, ya'll. Here's what this means. I want to use my design and photography skills to create cards for people (like all of you!). The idea is to create appealing designs to customer specifications and print them on budget-friendly 100% recycled paper. I want to help make environmentally-friendly and stylish available to everyone at a price they can afford. (I also want to finance my GINORMOUS grocery bill, of course.)

This is the plan (and right now, it's very much so still an initial plan). I need to contact The Guys (yay printers) for printing costs/to catch up, I need to price and check what the break-even would be, and I need to sketch out some prelims (and mock them up to, you know, pitch them!).

Here's where I need my (oh, so wonderful) friends. In order to get started in a freelancing business, you need clients. So, I guess what I'm saying here is, um, I need clients. I want you guys to brainstorm. What kinds of stationary would you be in the market for? See below for examples:

Graduation Announcements • Party Invitations • Marriage Announcements • Greeting Cards • Personal Stationary • Letterhead • Business Cards • Save the Date • Birth Announcements • Note Cards • Recipe Cards • Anniversary • Envelopes • Misc Other Note Cards

You get the idea. Would you be in the market for something like this?

Monday, December 1, 2008

Pan-Cooked Pears, With a Marsala Orange Sauce

Hello All! I hope your Thanksgiving was as great as mine. Surprisingly, with the extreme food extravaganza we had going on here, not one person took a picture. Not of the people OR the food! What a travesty.

Luckily, I believe I have enough time and photos to pass on some of our Thanksgiving delectables to you guys. Keep posted, I'll be at it soon.

As for today .... With the colder temperatures and holidays closing in hell-a rapidly, I have another blissfully delicious, warm and somewhat healthy dessert for you all!

Pan-Cooked Marsala Pears are a treat many people have heard of, but never tried. Why is this? They are so easy and utterly to-die-for! In this recipe, you'll find an impossibly easy (really, just try it!) way to create a dessert that feels 4 star (well ... maybe). The addition of a little orange peel completely revitalizes the sauce, so I wouldn't leave it out, but feel free to adjust. Other additions might include cranberries, lemon zest or another strongly flavored fruit. Keep your imagination jumping!

Now, enough stalling. Onward to the recipe!

Pan-Cooked Pears, With a Marsala Orange Sauce
serves 2

What You'll Need:
1 medium saucepan with a lid

2 slightly ripe (Not mushy, but please not rock hard!) pears
1/2 cup Marsala wine
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 slices of orange peel, about 2 inches long

Take the pears and cut off the bottoms, so that they will stand straight. Remove the peels from the pears (a potato peeler works well with a firm enough pear). Set aside.

Into the medium saucepan, pour the marsala, water and vanilla. Into this, mix the brown sugar and cinnamon. Add in orange peels. Bring this to a slight simmer. Place pears on their sides into the mixture. Cover.

Cook at a slight simmer for 15-25 minutes, turning the pears so that each side gets a chance to pick up the cinnamon and sauce. Finish with the pears sitting on their bottoms. Continue cooking until the pears are soft enough to easily pierce with a fork. For firmer pears, this may take up to 30 minutes. When done, remove pears from pan and place on serving plate.

To finish, simmer the marsala sauce until it reduces. Do not let sauce completely caramelize. If
the sauce gets too thick, add water by the tablespoon. Cook until you get a sauce that is the consistency of warmed honey.

Pour this sauce over the top of the pears, and serve.