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Here’s to two wonderful years, and many, many more.

unicorn_anniversary

image via Sea Studio

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A happy happy birthday to my sweet, silly, wonderful husband, who makes me feel exactly like this photo every day. I love you.

happy birthday my darling joel

image by Sea Studio

My favorite weekend, all my favorite people, my favorite comfort foods. We have a big family and thanksgiving is always quite the event. Three turkeys, 2 enormous trays of stuffing, giants vats of mashed potatoes and gravy, and an army of sides from all sides of the family. And a few favorite friends too! Plus night two – Friendsgiving! A few old friends, more food and hilarious games. And all the leftovers my heart could desire. While I like to eat the leftover stuffing straight with a little gravy on top, my favorite post-holiday meal is whipping up a batch of turkey noodle soup with my aunt’s amazing stock.

Turkey Noodle Soup
measurements are approximations!

8 cups homemade turkey stock
1 1/2 cups shredded leftover turkey
3 celery sticks, diced
1 large white onion, diced
3 medium carrots, diced
2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
1 1/2 cups noodles (I prefer wide egg noodles)
1 tsp ground thyme

In a large pot, heat the oil or butter over medium-high heat. Add celery, carrots, onion and thyme and cook until onion softens, about 5 minutes. Add stock and bring to a simmer. Add noodles and cook until noodles are just tender, about 10 minutes. Add the turkey, then salt and pepper to taste. Turn the heat to medium-low and cook until the turkey is heated through. Serve hot.

images via instagram

How could I forget?! My sister made this amazing salad for my birthday BBQ. Citrusy and crunchy – it was a great departure from a typical green salad. And the next morning, I loved it still! Hooray for leftovers! (Sorry sister, I ate the last 2 servings myself!) Not only was this salad the perfect addition to our BBQ classics, I can imagine as a great option for brunch too.

Parmesan Celery Salad
via 101 cookbooks

8 large celery stalks, stripped of strings (update: according to sister, stripping is optional)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for topping
1 1/2 cups cooked cannellini or garbanzo beans, heated
3 tablespoons currants (or golden raisins)
1/2 cup sliced almonds, deeply toasted
sea salt
freshly chopped herbs (or herb flowers), or reserved celery leaves

Slice the celery stalks quite thinly – 1/8-inch or so. Then, in a small bowl, make a paste with the olive oil, lemon juice, and Parmesan. Set aside. In a large bowl toss the heated beans with the olive-Parmesan mixture. When well combined, add the celery, currants, and most of the almonds. Toss once more. Taste and add a bit of salt if needed. Serve in a bowl or platter topped with herb flowers and/or celery leaves.

So… I turned thirty this week. What a week it was! Another friend of mine turned thirty this week also, so there were many festivities to be had. We had a lake float and pool party BBQ, dinner with 15 of our closest friends at the fantastic new neighborhood Mexican restaurant, and drinks & fun at my favorite local bar. They just built out a huge lower level filled with games – feels like a carnival just landed! Now I’m looking forward to resting up a bit this weekend after all this fun…