Bacon/Jalepeno Jam

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I know this sounds just awful, but when I read the recipe in the morning newspaper I just had to try it. It was in a food column by one of my favorite ‘cooks’, so I thought ‘how bad could it be?’

She even said if it wasn’t all eaten up in three days, she would be amazed.

Well that’s not what happened. I bought the bacon and the fresh Jalepenos. I even drove all the way to Whole Foods to get the perfect Jalepenos. ($4.99 a pound. But three came to $1.26).  Carefully seeded the latter, being very careful not to touch my eyes.

I gathered up the other ingredients: white sugar, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, onion, and salt.

Then lots of pulsing in the Cuisinart, cooking and cooling and then more pulsing. Finally the big moment. Ta Da.

Yuck.

Maybe it will be better when it is chilled. So I put it in a Tupperware and later tried some on a Triscuit cracker spread with cream cheese.

Not much better, but decided to give it ‘overnight’ to develop. So this morning I spread some on half a bagel and it was even worse than I remembered it.

So down the drain it went. Total cost about $10, time, about one hour. I guess I’ve wasted $10 and one hour of time at sometime in my life over the past 75 years.

And I think I’ll just stick with Smucker’s Strawberry Jam. (Now the $5 price tag seems more than fair). And if I get the urge to have bacon in my jam, I can always cook up some and crumble it into the already made jam. Maybe I have’invented’ something. Let’s see, Bacon/Strawberry or Bacon/orange marmalade?

They say, don’t try this at home. But I think you couldn’t go wrong with crumbling one piece of bacon on top of a piece of toast that had been spread with the jam of your choice. Could be a taste sensation.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Dip

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chocolate-chip-cookie-dip2Doesn’t this look yummy? Very simple and great as a dip for animal crackers or gingersnaps. With graham crackers this would taste just like cheesecake. One square dipped in this dip would probably not be as fattening as one slice of real cheesecake.

However, I don’t know if you could limit yourself to just one?

Recipe

One 8 oz block of cream cheese

One stick of butter

2 T brown sugar

3/4 cup powdered sugar

1/2 t vanilla

Beat all the ingredients with an electric mixer. Stir in 3/4 cup of chocolate chips. Voila!

It will stiffen in fridge and if you want you can roll into a ball, and roll ball in chopped pecans/chocolate chips and  you will have a ‘cheesecake ball’.

Lime cures headache

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OK> This blog will be short and sweet.

I spent the whole day watching baseball. First it was the Little League World Series with Japan winning the championship. Then later in the day my Dodgers lost to the Red Sox.

So by evening I had a roaring headache. As I seldom ever get a headache, I don’t ever buy aspirin. Remembering some of my ‘old wives’ tales, I pressed on the fleshy part of my thumb  with my knuckle. This usually works.  Still had the headache.

Then I tried something I have never done before, but recently read about. Cut a lime in half and rub it across your forehead. I tried it. And would you believe it worked in about ten seconds? (Of course you have to have a lime on hand.)

Audible.com-The Husband’s Secret

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I have been enjoying Audible.com for a couple of years now. This site offers over 100,000 book titles from all categories.

Initially the charge is $7.49 a month for three months and then goes to $14.95 a month. If you cancel at this point, you will be offered a ‘special’ to continue.

I like to read books with real paper pages too, but this is so nice when you are driving or your eyes are tired.

I am currently ‘reading’ (listening) to a terrific book called The Husband’s Secret. At first I was put off by the Australian accent  of the narrator, but now I really enjoy it.

The story takes place in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia. It explores the lives and minds of several women, whose lives intersect.

The Husband’s Secret refers to a letter that a husband wrote to his wife to be opened upon his death. Unfortunately the wife finds the letter while the husband is still very much alive.

I haven’t finished the book yet, but I can hardly put it down. I have lots of things to do today, including a trip to Costco, but I would really rather just go back to bed and turn on my Kindle and see what happens next.

If you are thinking of joining Audible, I will suggest Gone Girl for your first book choice. There are two narrators. Julie Whelans is the wife and she is The Best. The husband of the Gone Girl is also excellent and the story is fabulous.

I also enjoyed The Poisonwood Bible, which I had read in regular paper form and liked even better on Audible. The company really selects the perfect narrator for each book. This one is about a family of Southern Baptists who go to the Belgian Congo in the 50’s to Christianize the natives. The story is told from the point of view of the mother and her four daughters. Each chapter, a different person.

So, if you haven’t already discovered Audible.com, take the plunge. You won’t be sorry.

Whole Foods

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Now that’s what I call service! Today I went to Whole Foods market. I don’t shop there often, but was right next door and needed a few things.

Salmon, chicken, melon, and hot dogs. Their hot dogs are organic and have no hormones etc. We shall see. I didn’t get organic hot dog buns, however.

I knew I had to carry the bag up from my car, so I kept my purchases to a bare bones minimum. Not too easy, when everything looks so tempting.Photo on 8-14-13 at 2.06 PM 2

When I went to check out, the checker went and got a large bag of crushed ice, which he put on top of the meats. I have never seen this done before, although I have lived in Palm Springs and Las Vegas, where the temperature is often in the triple digits.

Made me want to go back more often.

The Butler-a movie review

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Yesterday I went to see The Butler. My daughter had told me it was a ‘Must See’. It really was excellent and Forrest Whitaker should take home an Oscar for his role as The Butler.

The movie begins in 1926, when he is growing up on a cotton farm. After witnessing his father getting shot for nothing, he is taken in to be trained as a ‘house nigger’. He learns to serve and goes on to work at hotels and later at the White House.

He stays on through the Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Reagan administrations. All during this time there is a huge civil rights movement going on in the United States. He is not a political person, but his son is, and the movie is as much about all of that. Alabama, the sit ins, Martin Luther King, the Black Panthers and the support for South Africa and Mandela.

Oprah Winfrey plays his wife and she is very good. Both she and her husband live long enough to see Barack Obama become president. Very historically correct and a true story, that none of us should ever forget.

During this time I had little personal involvement in the civil rights movement. In 1955 I went to UCLA in Los Angeles, California. The school was restricted in the sense that there was no onsite housing and the only place to live on campus was in a sorority or fraternity house.

There were 23 sorority houses. Three were Jewish and none were black/Negro. There was no mixing of the races at all. One of the Jewish fraternities let a black athlete stay in their house. His name was Raefer Johnson, and he was the decathlon champion of the world.

He was a very nice guy and I had the pleasure of meeting him at one of our social exchanges. I even danced with him, which was pretty racy in 1956. Later in life he went on to found the Special Olympics for children with Down syndrome and other disabilities.

When the national fraternity, which was based in Georgia found out about this, they threatened to lynch him, should he ever come to the South and look at a white woman.

As late at 1965, I had another civil rights experience. Living in Seattle and trying to sell our home during a Boeing strike proved to be difficult. A realtor called me on the phone and asked if I would consider selling my home to a black family.

The father was an engineer at Boeing and the mother was a nurse. There were two little boys.

Long story, I sold our home to these nice people and all hell broke loose. Immediately there was a cross burning on my front lawn. Then nobody would let their children play with my children.

Finally, the woman across the street came over and read me the riot act. She told me there was a Gentleman’s Agreement not to sell to Negroes. She accused me of blockbusting and being in cahoots with the NAACP.

I just felt so sorry for those two little boys. Imagine being the only black children in the neighborhood and the school? I think the parents were very brave.

At the end of the movie the whole audience applauded.

Easy as Cake

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The other day I wrote a blog called Easy as Cake. It got 170 hits, but when I tried to reread it, it had disappeared from my site. I can’t find it anywhere and I know I posted it.

So I have decided to rewrite it and post it again, for any of  you who may have missed it.

I love to bake from scratch, but cake mixes have improved and I sometimes make a cake using Duncan Hines mixes. If you add a mixture of vodka and orange juice instead of water, your cake will be very moist and last for a week in the refrigerator.

To save time, which we never seem to have enough of, when it is time to grease the pan, simply put your hand in the empty plastic bag that the mix came in. Use this instead of getting out that roll of waxed paper. Then when you have the egg shells to throw away, turn the bag inside out and put the garbage inside. Voila.

Also, when making a chocolate bundt cake, grease the pan and instead of flour, dust with cocoa powder. No more white streaks on the finished cake.

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