Tuesday, April 24

Tofu Tuesday - Pesto Parm Tofu

Still on the weekly tofu kick.  :o)

So, last Tuesday I had a tomato and two bitty zucchinis that I needed to use up.  So I was thinking some kind of pasta veggie goodness... but how to incorporate tofu?  I had seen something about pesto and tofu, so I just went with it and mixed this and that together until I had dinner.  :o)

There isn't so much a specific recipe, but here's what I used:

For the veggie pasta:
  • Roma tomatoes
  • Zucchini
  • Cloves of garlic
  • Spiral pasta 
  • Olive Oil
For the pesto parm tofu:
  • Extra firm tofu
  • Pesto
  • Olive Oil
  • Grated parmesan
  • Breadcrumbs
So first things first.  Get some of that liquid out of your tofu (using either a press or ya know, school psych books.  Whatever works for ya!)   I let this dehydrate for about 30 minutes while I shoveled snow INTO my driveway.  Yup, gotta love that you spend all Fall and Winter shoveling snow OUT of your driveway, just to throw it back in during the Spring.  [It's all melted now!!! Yay!!!!]

Cut up your tofu into little cubes.
 I used a spoonful of pesto and a little bit of olive oil to coat the tofu.
Then picked up the [hard as a rock] heel of bread that Kevin made a few days earlier.  It was delicious when we had it, but then sat out not super well covered, so it got pretty hard.  Instead of using my canned breadcrumbs, I opted to crush this sucker down into breadcrumbs.  Waste not, want not, right?

Combine the breadcrumbs and some grated parm in a bowl to dip your pesto covered tofu cubes into.  Coat on all sides.

Place on a cooking sheet and roast for 30 minutes @ 450*F.  I suppose I should have turned them half way through, but that seemed like quite a hassle since they are so small, so I just didn't.

In the meanwhile...  Roast up the cloves of garlic (I just did mine stove top with some olive oil)
 Get your pasta going (I used whatever I had left - I believe it was a combination of Wacky Mac and quinoa noodles)

 Chop up your veggies that you want to put in with the pasta.

 Cook the noodles to al dente.

While you're waiting, may I recommend playing catch the noodle with your pup?
Missed it!


Got it!!!
 Saute your zucchini in a bit of olive oil.

I decided to roast my tomatoes before putting them in the pan with the zucchini and garlic.  I just hate mushy tomatoes, and this helped them hold up a bit more.
 Mix your pasta in with the zucchini, garlic, and tomatoes.  A bit of ground black pepper is a nice addition.  :o)

I put the roasted tofu on top of the pasta, then sprinkled (surprise surprise) some goat cheese on top.
YUM!  Had it for left overs 3 times.  Easy, cheap, and delicious.  :o)

Thursday, April 19

Done & Done!

Whew!  Well I am FINALLY done with my project.  Ya know, the one with the broken screws and cement-like wood boards.  Made a trip to Lowe's after work today to pick up some different wood for Plan B and some longer nails.  I was determined that my "Sunday project" would be done this Thursday!

Lesson I learned today at Lowe's: If you want more varied sized wood (ie 1x3's etc.) then skip Home Depot.  Wow... Lowe's had everything I was originally looking for, but couldn't find at Home Depot.  Oh well, now I know.

So, for the project reveal:  I made wall shelves!  Aren't you excited???   Ha!  I know, wall shelves are not the most interesting things in the world, but I don't have quite enough room in my kitchen for a buffet, but needed some extra storage.  Enter wall shelves.

Just look at all that empty space just begging for some attention.

So I bought some wood per Ana White (if you've not been to her site, go now after you read my post).  It came to round abouts $30 (mostly because I had to buy more expensive stuff to get the 1x2s - again, check out Lowe's instead)

And easily enough put together the basic shelf.

But then I wanted to add a glass rack for my wine glasses.  They take up too much valuable cupboard space, so I wanted them hanging.  I figured I could come up with some kind of plan to make that work with these shelves.  And I did.

But that gosh darn cement-like board and the delicate screws...

However, at Lowe's I was able to get pine pieces (in the molding section) that met my needs.  Voila!  I used wood glue and super long skinny nails to attach these to the shelves.

After I stained the boards, I set about screwing them into the wall.

Not the easiest task to do alone, but I didn't want to wait, so I improvised with some jerry-rigging and pencil drawing (yes, I did use a level, and yes, they are actually mounted to the wall level.)

Ta da!   No idea if I'll keep what's on it up there or not, but I was ready to put something on it!  At least for pictures-sake.  :o)
Not sure why my ceiling looks pink... It's not...

Oh I like it.

Plenty of room for my glasses to slide right in! [plus extra room on the sides in case on an earthquake!]

So, as long as I don't hear a loud crash tonight, we'll mark this one down as a success!  Just took a while is all.  :o)

I'm sitting on the porch steps writing this blog, because it has been BEAUTIFUL lately!  Not a bad view from your front porch, eh?

Besides, Rudder prefers to collect his lost long toys from the yard and chill in the grass, so I thought I'd keep him company.

However, it is now just after 9 (and still very light!) and my fingers are getting a bit cold!  Time to head in and clean up the mess I made before my parents get here.  :o)

Green Onions & Green Grass!

 Did you know that you can grow green onions from the bulb?  In a glass??

Well, you can!

So instead of throwing away the ends of your green onions, stick them in a glass of water!

Put them in your window, change the water once a week, and watch them grow!

I used one of my new shoots tonight.  :o)  

So speaking of green things sprouting up...  I found green grass (yes green and living!) coming up along side of my house!  Most of the visible grass around town is more of a grayish brown and looks like a bad comb-over, so I was really excited to see living GREEN grass!
If you get up close and personal, you can see its really green

Rudder is a fan.  He's even finding tennis balls he lost months ago!

And other random things that were blown into my yard during the crazy Chinook wind storms this Fall.  I have no idea where this bird feeder came from...

Seriously, we've found 4 tennis balls in my yard.  I know there are at least 4 more hanging around the neighborhood and on the trail behind the neighborhood...

My back yard is a disaster.  Still quite a bit of snow, and REALLY POOR drainage...  Any hints on how to keep my yard from turning into a swimming pool??  Ohmigoodness if this stands too long the mosquitoes will be horrendous...

Rudder loves the mud.  

So he needs daily showers (sometimes two) to get all as much as possible of the grit and grime out.   Seriously, his coat traps dirt like nothing else.

Good news is, he is pretty ok with his showers.  He LOVES being toweled off.  But I think his favorite thing...

Is rolling around like a wild man (thus the blurred picture) on my futon and carpet...

And this is why I'll never have white furniture.

Wednesday, April 18

Spring-y Salad

Well, I was really hoping to post my most recent project...  Alas, it appears that I bought cement boards instead of wood...

Just look what happened to my poor little screws!

Not once, but twice!

Some kind of super strength wood...

Ugh...  I gave up for the night.  I have a new plan of attack for tomorrow, and an idea of what to get to replace that cement like board.  Hopefully tomorrow it'll be all done and ready to reveal.  :o)

So instead, I bring you, my dinner!

My aunt sent a few recipes she had seen my way and I decided to try one out.

It was for a edamame orange salad and had fun things like wheatberries in it.  Well, I didn't have all of the ingredients, and it was a bit more complicated than I was up for on a Wednesday night, so I used the salad recipe as an inspiration.  On my lunch break at work, I did a mental inventory of what I had at home and made an ingredient list that sounded like it might go well together in a salad.

 In case you can't read that, the salad was made up of:
  • Greens
  • Grain Mix 
  • Tangelo Slices
  • Cashews
  • Edamame
  • Green Onion
  • Goat Cheese (because I have a goat cheese problem...  seriously, I could eat it every day)
This was the "Grain Mix" I used.  It's from the frozen section at Costco.  Pretty handy to have as a quick side, and good for using to mix with things.  :o)   It's made up of wheatberries, barley, and quinoa, so I was somewhat following the wheatberry ingredient in the original recipe. :o)

I made my own salad dressing (sometimes I wonder why I even bother buying any...)

The dressing was made up of:
  • Lime Juice
  • Rice Vinegar
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Honey
  • Almond Butter (just a dollop)  

My new mini mason jars are PERFECT for making a small amount of dressing.

So putting together a salad is pretty self-explanatory, so I'll just show you the picture of what it looked like before I devoured it.  :o)   I had half a sweet potato on the side, because I was just in the mood for a sweet potato.  

Definitely what I was in the mood for.

Thanks Aunt Lynne for the recipe!  :o)