Wednesday, August 23, 2017

33/52: Solar Eclipse

Being in the path of totality and seeing the solar eclipse on Monday was the most amazing thing I have ever witnessed in my life. We had the opportunity to attend the first ever eclipse delayed baseball game in Keizer, OR home of the Volcanoes.  The game started at 9:40 AM and was delayed about 10:00 for the total eclipse...resuming again around 10:45.

It was so emotional to see the moon cross in front of the sun's path and shade the earth in total darkness. Seeing the corona and the Diamond Ring Effect brought me to tears. 

Of course, I didn't have the camera equipment to capture the moment so I shut off my devices and spent the 1 minute and 52 seconds staring directly at the sun (you can take off your glasses in totality).  The event left me speechless.

I can now understand why people travel the world in search of the total eclipses.  It's an awe inspiring event....once in a lifetime for most people and something I know I will never forget.


Sunday, August 20, 2017

Menu Plan Monday: Eclipse Week 2017

Welcome to Eclipse Monday!

Are you going to see the eclipse today?  If so...where are you?  It's a pretty big deal in Oregon as a thin slice of the entire state is in the path of a total solar eclipse.  An eclipse is a once in a lifetime occurrence for most people.  I am pretty excited!

Here is the rest of the menu for the amazing week ahead.

As always, if you could check out Laura's site I know that you would find it useful in your planning endeavors.


SUNDAY: Grilled Hamburgers
MONDAY:  Eclipse Day!  Salem Keizer Volcanos game at 9:35am (breakfast at the park) and Pizza for dinner
TUESDAY: WW Chicken Broccoli Stir fry
WEDNESDAY: WW Farfalle Pasta with Pesto and Shrimp
THURSDAY: Flat Iron Steak with Salad

Friday, August 18, 2017

Old Photo Friday: Happy Birthday, Great Grandma Helen

WHO: Helen Lucille Watkins
WHERE: In her vegetable garden; Cottage Grove, OR
WHEN: Let's say early 1950's

Happy Remembrance Birthday to my great grandmother who was born 114 years ago (8/24/1903).  That's quite a garden and she was quite a lady.


Thursday, August 17, 2017

Recipe of the Week: Brown Butter Scallops with Parmesan Risotto and Sauteed Greens

Every once in a while, it's nice to cook a dinner just for you.  I love to cook and to entertain, but I spend a lot of time preparing food for other people to enjoy. 

Don't get me wrong, I love to eat too...but sometimes my cravings are just my own and I long for a meal to prepare that is simply for me.  Last week, I found the recipe.


Brown Butter Scallops with Parmesan Risotto and Sauteed Greens


1 tablespoon butter
1 minced garlic clove
1 minced small shallot
1 cup aborio rice
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 cups+ vegetable stock
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
1 pound jumbo sea scallops
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 minced clove garlic
4 cups baby spinach or chopped kale
3 tablespoons butter

For the Ristotto:

In a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter.  Add the garlic and shallot and sautee for 1 minute, until soft and fragrant. 

Add the rice, stir to coat with butter.  Cook for 1 minute and then add the white wine and deglaze the pan.  

Begin to add the broth, 1/2 cup at a time, and simmer and stir after adding each unit of broth until the rice is soft and creamy.  This process typically takes about 30 minutes.  Check the rice and add more liquid if it is not cooked through.

Add the cheese and stir until incorporated.  Season with salt and pepper.

For the Sauteed Spinach:

Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Add the garlic and stir for 1 minute.  Add the spinach or kale and stir until wilted.  Season with salt and pepper.

For the Scallops:

Heat grapeseed oil in non-stick skillet over high heat. Pat scallops dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and add to pan.  They should really sizzle!  Shake pan to keep them loose in the bottom.  After about 3 minutes, turn the scallops over and cook until the other side is golden brown and the center is opaque. Remove scallops from the hot pan and set on paper towel lined plate and cover to keep warm.

For the Brown Butter: 

Put 3 tablespoons on butter in a skillet and heat slowly over medium heat.  Continue to stir while watching the butter closely.  When it starts to look golden and become foamy...remove from heat.

Plate three scallops on top of two heaping spoonfuls of risotto and 1/2 cup of greens. Drizzle with slightly cooled brown butter.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

32/52: Summer in Retrograde

Our first batch of yellow pear tomatoes in Seattle

Spicy Rigatoni - Dinner on Saturday

Cornbread waffles with bacon, green chilies and cheddar cheese - breakfast on Sunday

Dahlias and our first Beaverton tomato

I am sure if we could, we would all love to stop time or go backwards to feel like we did when we were younger, attend an event again or a time in our lives when we didn't stop to appreciate it...and the moment passed. 

Summer is going by so fast this year.  There are things that I am enjoying that I didn't last year.  There are events I look forward to that have now passed.  

The dog days are here and before too much longer, then sun will set before 8PM (August 26th to be exact), a cool evening breeze will arrive off the coast and the hot rays of the sun will disappear for another 9 months.  Just saying...

Enjoy the sights of Summer before they are gone.