Sandi is blogging from the WhistleStop Cafe kitchen. It's all about good home cooking; food, family and fun. Thousands of posts . . .

~In the south and around the world.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Remember When

I am ashamed to say that a while back my friend Louise at her beachy Cape Cod Cupboard sent me a little tag that is called 'I remember When'.

Better late than never...

I remember when~ We used to rush home from school to watch Young and the Restless

I remember when~ We would pick cherries from the tree that was near my Grandparents back door. We would eat them until we couldn't eat any more.

I remember when~ We watched the man walk on the moon for the first time. It was the same night as the Miss America pageant, and we would have rather seen that.

I remember when~ I had a wrap around disco skirt that whirled when I twirled.

I remember when~ We rode across country facing backwards in a station wagon- our parents never even thought about seat belts!

I remember when~ My friends and I heard that Elvis died, we burst into tears and cried hysterically.

I remember when~ The best pop corn was jiffy pop, we cooked it on the stove in the metal shaker. Watch the top rise was about as exciting as life got.

I am thinking that life can't get much better than that!
Thank y'all for reminding me.

Happy Halloween ~darling

Happy Halloween Y'all!

Have a safe evening y'all~


Sunday, October 28, 2007

Centerpiece of the Month~ October

I am excited about sharing the round-up of centerpieces my friends have sent this month. There are some fun, fall centerpieces.
Jade at Apples & Oranges photographed some red sunflowers. The light and the colors are perfect. A table of these couldn't help but put a smile on your face.

Deborah at Pictures, Pots, & Pens has sent in a tribute to pomegranates. This is a centerpiece of one of my favorite fruits. Sandy's centerpiece for October is a fall bowl of New Hampshire apples. Check it out at Rangus Pug!Just a Beach Kat has posted a fresh bouquet of goldenrod that she picked herself. Thanks Kat for a centerpiece that signals the of the end of summer.Zoey who has a Perennial Passion sent the most unusual table setting with orange dahlias and touches of black and white to compliment her peach luster dishes.Meeta What's For Lunch Honey? has been loyal to the COTM, this month she is sharing a beautiful pumpkin display. She always includes How-To instructions, so you can do this yourself!Zoomie has a bit of an advantage since she used to be a florist. Now she is combining art and flowers with a ring of pictures, surrounding a potted primrose.Janelle at Talk of Tomatoes started this roundup, and allowed me to host it to give her a break. This month she posted a batty centerpiece~ I hope not batty because of the move! I am thrilled that so many people have taken the time to send in their centerpieces. I will post November's roundup at the end of the month. Send your link in to me anytime between now and then.

My own little centerpiece is a tribute to Halloween... Sweet!

So, What's on y'alls table?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

The Settings

Palma is the queen of pottery! Brad is a champion schlepper when it comes to shopping in Italy. They have learned the easiest way is to just have things shipped home... like this beautiful poppy platter we saw on her last shopping trip.
Everyone of the 6 tables was set with a different table scape and the most beautiful ceramics you have ever seen. I couldn't help but snap some pictures~

This 600 pound ceramic table was shipped from Positano.

It is the perfect place for a gathering of good friends~ for leftovers and paper plates after the cleanup.

That was the best night of all!

I am missing y'all~


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Just Desserts

The desserts in Palm Desert were amazing.
Luckily Gail, John, and I were a little delayed getting in from Salt Lake City. That allowed Palma to finish up 48 individual panna cottas.
She finished off the 5 layer black and while cake with a rim of chocolate straws.
The butterscotch cake was a work of art with 10 layers.After 10 hours of partying we finished it off with a final pot of coffee and a few sips of Brachetto.CinCin y'all,

Slow Cooks

The menu for the big Palm Desert GTG was amazing, in fact the whole evening was amazing. Serving a sit down dinner for 48, involves a lot of work. Most people would even know where to begin. PalmaBella knows how to throw a party! She started with the lists months ago; making and freezing the pear gorgonzola ravioli, and the artichoke lemon lasagna ahead of time. Palma had Jerry out grilling vegetables at 6:30 in the morning- with a pot of coffee.
We were the caprese team, assembling skewers of tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella.The evening started with a battle over the brie with fig preserves.The secondi was a pork tenderloin with a fig reduction sauce. We all had a part in the stirring of the port and figs.My favorite was the chippolini onions with chestnuts and apricots.Of course there was plenty of Italian wine and prosecco to go around.I think all of the SlowCooks would agree that we had the best time of all. You know it is a foodie who is happiest in the kitchen.
Wouldn't y'all agree?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Slow Traveling... again

I can't even begin to describe the trip I have just been on. Pictures are worth 1,000 words!
I have been to Palm Desert, for a Slow Travel get together.This was a chance to meet the friends I have made in this internet community. Some I have met before, some I only know online. Gail and John~ I have never met in person before. We met for the first time in Salt Lake City... people at the airport must have thought we were sisters separated at birth. We were instant friends... which is lucky because we are going to Italy together in a few months with Gail's Great Escapes. I finally met Jerry, another food blogger; who kept me in stitches most of the week. He is also going to be a part of our great escape. We can't wait!I shared a condo in Palm Desert with new friends...Kathy, who also does small group tours in a Luberon Experience. Terry is 'just a nurse' like me (she is a nurse anesthetist). We rented a great condo on the golf course, with our own golf cart.
The highlight of the weekend was a dinner for 48, hosted and prepared by PalmaBella and her wonderful husband. I'll make another whole post on the meal... Un- Believable! This says it all about Palma's kitchen.I am glad to be home. I was panicking when I realized I couldn't get my wireless to work. Isn't that pitiful? I can't wait to show you pictures.

Buon Appetito y'all!


Saturday, October 20, 2007

Road Trip!

I am on the road trip of all road trips...
In 'Palma' Desert!
My plan was to blog from here. But~ all good plans go astray. We haven't been able to access the internet from our condo. So there will be fabulous stories that will have to wait until I get home. I am at PalmaBella's beautiful Italian villa in the desert. Our hosts Palma and Brad are so gracious, although we are pulling our share of kitchen duty.
Pictures to follow!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Reminder~ COTM

Don't forget... I'll be rounding up our centerpieces of the month for October. I will post them on Oct 29th. Send your links to me!

So, y'all clear off those tables. Show us what you've got.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Don't Cry For Me~

When you are slicing an onion, do you get tears in your eyes? I never have and now I know why. I have always had terrible nearsightedness and worn contact lenses.

My opthalmologist has fitted me with this new prescription. It is do- I guess- to approaching the big 5.0. I am having trouble with the little print, which used to be the only thing I could see. Now I have only one lens to see the person across the table from me. I guess my brain knows which eye to use.
So Back to the onion. Now I cry out of one eye! The eye that doesn't have a contact lens cries big tears~ that is attractive.

I am going to have to start using some of these tips to avoid tears while chopping an onion.
*freeze the onion for 5-8 minutes before chopping
*cut out the root end before chopping
*light a candle to absorb the sulfuric fumes
*slice under running water
*breathe through your mouth
*chew gum while slicing and dicing
*put white vinegar on the cutting board to neutralize the onion

Time to fess up~ What do y'all do?

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

An Apple a Day...

Do you still have any apples left? After all of that apple pie, we need something low fat and nutritious. How 'bout an apple tuna salad? A little sweet, a little tart, and a lot of protien.
Apple Tuna Salad
1 lg can of tuna
1/2 cup diced apples
1/2 cup diced celery
1 tsp lemon juice
2 Tbs fresh dill
1/4 cup mayonnaise
salt & pepper to taste
Drain tuna well. Dice apples and celery, cover with lemon juice to keep from browning. Combine all ingredients. Serve in a pita pocket with some crunchy lettuce.

It may not be as yummy as a piece of apple crumble pie... but an apple a day (when it's mixed with tuna) will keep the doctor away.

I also want to take the time to thank Blue Zebra for tagging me with the Nice Matters Blogward. I love that she has kicked it up a bit...changed it from an award to a blogward. She is passing on the nice! I am not tagging anyone this time because I'd have a hard time narrowing it down.

Y'all are easy to be nice to.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Apple Crumble Pie

This is an apple pie that would be a great dessert for all our Canadian friends. Happy Thanksgiving O'Canada!
Apple Crumble Pie
9" pie crust
tart apples
2/3 cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 Tbs flour
1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 stick butter
Pre-heat oven to 400°
Core and slice the apples so they are the same size- about 1/4 inch thick. You will need around 4-5 cups of sliced apples. Toss together with all the ingredients to blend well, set aside. Prepare the pie-crust in a deep dish pie plate. (you can make your own crust if you want to show off)

In another bowl combine all of the ingredients for the topping. Cut the butter in, to make a crumbly topping. Pile the apples into the crust. Cover evenly with the topping. Bake 40-50 minutes until topping is browned and apples are tender.

Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Y'all enjoy,

Apple Salsa

I got the sweetest email from my niece last week. She had been apple picking and needed some recipes. She said
"I went apple picking this weekend and have more apples than apple crisp mix. Do you have any yummy apple recipes? I checked the blog but couldn't find anything with apples just pears and peaches!"

So... Apples it will be!

Turkey with Rosemary Apple Salsa
2 apples, diced
1/4 cup golden raisins
3-4 green onion, sliced
3 tbs fresh rosemary, chopped
1/4 cup pecan pieces
juice from 1 lime
good olive oil
salt & pepper
4 turkey cutlets
Dice apples, and onion. Squeeze lime juice over the apples to keep them from browning. Combine in a bowl with all the other ingredients. Add 3 Tbs of olive oil. Allow to sit 1-2 hours in the fridge.
Pan fry the turkey cutlets in a small amount of olive oil, a few minutes on each side. Just before serving top each cutlet with apples. Serve with wild rice.
Y'all enjoy!

Friday, October 05, 2007

Drumroll Please....

Let me take a second to thank each of you who took the time to leave a 'Hi y'all'. I threw all of your names into a pot. I wish we could send a box to everyone! Now it is time for the giveaway. Drumroll please~~~
The winner of the box of WhistleStop goodies is...

We will get a box full of batter mixes, marinade, and a cookbook off in the mail!

Since we had so many entries, we decided to draw one more name. This winner is Kevin at Seriously Good. We will send Kevin a 'Secret's in the Sauce' apron. I want a picture of this seriously good chef in a WhistleStop apron!

Thanks y'all!
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