Tuesday, August 30, 2011

What's Happening in Your Kitchen??

This morning finds me full of energy.  I finally got a good night's sleep!  I had not slept in 3 nights and I was miserable.  Between the coughing and hot flashes...this has not been a good last few days.  So bad last night, that I summoned the help of hub.  He ended up giving me a pill...ahem....muscle relaxer he said....that would help me go to sleep.  I had to be crazy in the head DELIRIOUS to accept anything with the evil grin he had on his face.  Last thing he said to me was..."I hope you wake up tomorrow"....ummm...ummmm....and I was snoozing and not caring anymore.  He didn't kill me...and I did get a good night's rest. Maybe he loves me after all!  :)

My mornings are very busy.  We have a system here.  He's in charge of Hannah and I'm in charge of the daycare children arriving at 7am for breakfast.  I think I got the better end of the deal.  Hannah can be difficult some mornings.  I try to make certain her mind is clear when she goes to bed.  Homework is done and clothes are picked out.   I try to make sure all issues are resolved by night fall.  Even though she doesn't always wear what we've picked out together...it helps to have those 2 things done.  She's on her own if she changes her mind.   She knows at the end of the evening, it's time to do the pick up of all her things and put it away.  One thing that will send me over is having to clean up the next morning.  That includes any coffee cups in the sink or her itsy bits of paper everywhere.

This morning I had chicken soup on my mind.....
 Chicken in the pot boiling at 7:30 this morning.

My cabinet is never low on spices!  As you can see, I'm a spice user when I cook!

Prep on the carrots done.  I didn't have celery or onion, so thanks to my spices those will just have to do.  See my pretty green knife?  LOVE IT.  I got a set of these from TJ Maxx.  They are very sharp and are color coded.  I just have to remember what each color is for!  I think I've got it down...but it would be nice if they would actually label the knives for old folks like myself!  I decided to add vegetables to this chicken soup and instead of noodles I'll use rice, so they are in the pot boiling as I type.  Anytime I make chicken soup, I think of Christina.  This is her favorite soup!  I wish she were here today to enjoy a bowl with us at lunch.

I thought I'd share with you a few more pics of some of my thrift store finds for the kitchen.  Seriously!  What is this?  It is covered with glass.  I found it at Goodwill a few weeks ago.  I always stand there and try to figure out where I would use this and could come up with NOTHING.  Hub said it was a hot plate.  Ummm...no.  Not with glass.  He still INSISTS this is what it is.  I know better.  It's decorative though, don't you think?  It has 4 little balls on each corner, so it's clearly to be used flat.  It was $2.99.  Just $3!  I was in the check-out line when I went back to get it.  I thought I'd have a brainstorm over it once I got home.
This is where it ended up.  What else could I do with it?  I don't even know what it is!!   For now, this is its new home.

So...what else is going on in my kitchen today?
How about this wooden bread holder?  It even has the open slats to cut your bread!  Goodwill.  That's right!  With the tags still hanging on it!  We're huge bread eaters here.  Not that that is a good thing...but the wooden bread holder makes it easier!  The crumbs land in the bottom of this and it's a no mess clean up!  Bread just seems to make a real mess when you attempt to slice it.

I bought these banana's last night while grocery shopping.  I think you can never have enough banana's!  Especially with kidlets running around.  These two eggplants came out of my sister in laws garden.  I'll be using these tonight for dinner.  We're having spaghetti with sausage and I thought some baked eggplant on the side would be nice.

Here's my recipe for the eggplant.  You've got to try it!

~Slice the eggplant in approx 1 in plus slices with peeling on.
~Fill a bowl or your kitchen sink with water and put LOTS of salt in the water.  This allows the eggplant to soak in salt water and removes that bitter acid taste.  Trust me, if you don't do this...you will know it!  I always recommend soaking no less than 30 minutes.
~Drain the water and take a paper towel and remove any excess water off of each eggplant slice.
~You'll need 2 containers for the next part.  One container will be filled with Italian Bread Crumbs.  The second container will have an egg wash in it.  (egg wash = 2-3 eggs beaten with water)
~Each eggplant slice will then be dredged in the egg wash and then the Italian Bread Crumbs.
~You'll need to have a cookie sheet ready and sprayed with your favorite cooking spray.  I use the Olive Oil Cooking Spray.
~Each breaded eggplant slice will then be individually laid on the cookie sheet.
~Last step is to drizzle a very small amount of Olive Oil on each slice.

Bake at 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes.  Your bread crumbs will begin turning a brown crusty color.  Your eggplant should be firm and not mushy.  Too much olive oil equals mushy eggplants!

We love eggplant here and use it as often as possible.  These are even good on bread cold.   You have to try it!  This has gotten hub and I through many lunches here at home.  Another idea after you've made the eggplant is go ahead and make the eggplant parmigiana!  Good Stuff.  For tonight..we'll have some good spaghetti with some baked eggplant on the side!

Tomorrow's post is all about bicycling!  Clearly, not me...well....I keep saying when Fall arrives.  *gulps*  Not much longer, huh?

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