Posts Tagged ‘At Home’

At Home: A Totally Cloudless Sky

July 30, 2017

It’s pretty rare to have a totally cloudless sky around here. I first noticed it when driving back earlier from doing an errand. Even on days when, as today, the weather couldn’t be more perfect — low 80’s with no humidity — there are usually some clouds. But not today. Definitely needed to document the evidence.

At Home: Totally Cloudless Sky

At Home: Totally Cloudless Sky

At Home: Totally Cloudless Sky

For sure, this is “Rozy Weather”!


At Home: Salade Niçoise

July 27, 2017

Salade Niçoise is one of our favorite salads. Restaurants often use fresh tuna (here’s an example), but I use canned. It is a French salad, and whenever we ordered it in France, it always came with canned tuna; therefore, I think it’s safe to surmise that canned tuna is considered traditional. Lettuce, tomatoes (here I’m using local Jerseys), hard-boiled eggs, and potatoes are also traditional. I did, however, depart slightly from two other traditional ingredients. Haricots verts were unavailable, so I picked out the thinnest regular green beans. (I actually did such a good job, the cashier at Delicious Orchards first rung them up as the much more expensive haricots verts.) As for the olives, I use Kalamatas because they’re more readily available than Niçoise. For the dressing: a classic vinaigrette. I dressed the lettuce separately in a bowl, plated everything, took the photo, and then spooned vinaigrette over the rest.

I’ve always believed we eat first with our eyes. This colorful, eye-catching salad definitely said, “Eat me!” And it was as delicious as it looked.

At Home:  Salade Niçoise

At Home: Fish Chowder

July 25, 2017

Summer seems to be taking a bit of a hiatus. It’s been unseasonably cool along with lots of rain. Today, the temperature barely made it above 70 — about 15 degrees below the norm. It was the perfect day for some fish chowder. I used this recipe. As written, it makes six servings, but I cut it down to two. Delicious!

At Home: Fish Chowder

At Home: First NJ Peaches of 2017 Season

July 16, 2017

They’re from Fralinger Orchards, in Bridgeton. Bought them at Wegmans which carries them every year. A peach of a peach!

At Home: NJ Peaches

At Home: July 4th Holiday 2017

July 6, 2017

On Monday, Jen came out to the house by herself because unlike her, Louis did not have the day off. Lunch was Hebrew National franks with the usual accompaniments — Batampte deli mustard and sour kraut — along with Busch’s vegetarian baked beans. I didn’t take any photos.

Jen spent part of the afternoon sketching.

At Home: J. Sketching

(More about her art work in a future post.)

Dinner started with Chilled Strawberry-Watermelon Soup I’d made earlier in the day.

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

For the main course, Beer Can Chicken. (The previous post, Beer Can Chicken Without the Can, is here.) This time, instead of beer, I filled the canister with white wine.

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

Accompaniment: Jersey Bi-Color Corn.

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

Dessert: Breyer’s Vanilla and the last of my Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream using pick-your-own strawberries.

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

The next day — the 4th — lunch for Michael and me started with homemade Yellow Squash Soup.

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

We then had some of the leftover chicken served at room temperature. To go with it, I made Macaroni Salad.

At Home: July 4th Weekend 2017

The weather during the entire holiday was perfect for dining al fresco and relaxing on the patio.

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

June 3, 2017

Bright and early Wednesday morning, Ed Wendel’s crew arrived to do our annual spring clean-up. It was actually a bit of a surprise because when I spoke to Ed a couple of weeks ago, he wasn’t sure exactly when he’d get to us since he was swamped with work, so I was figuring next week. And, by the way, no surprise that he’s swamped with work because when it comes to landscapers, he is the best!

Shortly after the crew started working, Ed stopped by to check things out. He’s one of our favorite people. We love having the chance to chat with him on a range of subjects.

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

His guys are ace pruners.

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

When the mulch arrives, the job is nearly done.

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

The finished product is always A++!

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

The tree that replaced the tree that replaced the tree that fell on our house has grown substantially and is doing very well.

At Home: Spring Clean-up 2017

At Home: Umbrella’s Up!

May 27, 2017

At Home: Umbrella's Up!

A Memorial Day Weekend tradition, it’s how we mark the unofficial start of the summer season.

Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream

May 21, 2017

During our trip to France in 1999, we visited Limoges. We bought a dessert set consisting of a large serving bowl and 12 dishes.

At Home:  Dessert Dish

I love that the design is perfect for the strawberry ice cream I made yesteerday using some of the berries we picked at Battleview.

Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream

At Home: Spring Colors

April 29, 2017

At Home: Spring Colors

White Dogwood Tree (?)

At Home: Spring Colors


At Home: Avocado Toast

February 18, 2017

At Home: Avocado

The avocado. WebMD calls it a “nutrient all-star” because it contains a myriad of vitamins and minerals that have lots of health benefit. And while the fat content is high, it’s monounsaturated fat, aka the “good” fat, that helps lower bad cholesterol.

No doubt the avocado’s most popular use is for guacamole which, of course, I’ve made occasionally (the recipe I use is via Diana Kennedy, the doyenne of Mexican cuisine). However, I more regularly use an avocado when making one of my favorite salads, the Cobb salad, in which it’s an important ingredient.

A few days ago, I made a Cobb salad for lunch – just for me because Michael preferred to have something else. That meant I didn’t use the entire avocado, so then the question: What to do with the rest? I did consider making guacamole but suddenly got this brainstorm. Avocado toast! Something I’d never made before. Actually, I’d never even eaten it before. Though it’s become quite trendy and is served in many restaurants, it’s not been on the menu in any of the restaurants we frequent.

A little Googling provided the info that avocado toast can be plain or adorned. Adorned sounded good to me. And I immediately had the idea of how mine would be adorned.

Though the recipes I looked at all called for hearty, very crusty breads, I used a fairly thick slice of brioche bread. Besides it being the only bread I had on hand, it happens to be really delicious especially when toasted. I mashed the avocado, mixed in a bit of lemon juice, and spread it on the toasted brioche. To the avocado base, I added these layers: chopped scallions, crispy bacon torn into small pieces, chopped tomato, cubed pieces of cooked chicken breast, a generous sprinkling of blue cheese, finely minced hard-boiled egg yolk, and the hard-boiled egg white finely chopped. Lastly, I spooned on some vinaigrette.

Et, voila!

At Home: Avocado Toast

Avocado Toast Cobb Salad

Not exactly a pick-me-up-and-eat-me type of avocado toast as a fork and knife were definitely required. Yum!