Friday, September 29, 2023
for principals is crazy. I have multiple night events as everybody is wrapping up the year. Every Saturday is booked. And I was in such bad need of a haircut that I was regularly getting some sort of comment that contained the phrase "mad scientist." So my personal day consisted of a haircut, getting contacts, and having a late breakfast with my wife.
In the midst of my errands, my wife and I went out to eat. We shared something that I had never heard of: lemon ricotta pancakes with blueberry compote. They were delicious - so light and fluffy.
So that following Saturday I decided that I would surprise the whole family with breakfast. Instead of making the daddy standard - Dutch Babies - I decided that I would branch out. We happened to have some ricotta cheese (something about me thinking I would make homemade ravioli while my wife was out of the country), and we still had lemons on our lemon tree. I could use the wonderful Interweb and find a recipe for lemon ricotta pancakes, the whole family would think that I was a culinary genius, and Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry would show up at my door asking me for tips.
Wednesday, August 30, 2023
It happened more recently to me. About a year ago somebody started talking about key lime pie. Key lime pie has always been one of my favorites, but that conversation began a nearly year-long quest to find the best key lime pie in the state.
What makes a great key lime pie? It takes a lot. It needs to have a good balance between the key lime custard and the whipped cream. It needs to have a good balance of tartness and sweetness (in my opinion too many key lime pies err on the side of sweetness, which ruins the key lime pie), with the best key lime pies having a tartness that gets you in your jaw. It needs to have a strong lime flavor, and it must have a great graham cracker crust.
Sunday, July 30, 2023
We got our first egg in May. We were having dinner on our patio with some friends, and a chicken started squawking like it was being murdered. We eventually found a soft shelled egg, and we were excited. Then I got impatient that one of our chickens was laying, but the others were not. Over the next four weeks or so, our Ameraucanas all got into line. It was fun finding these blue eggs around.
The Australorps were a different story. We got our first brown egg from one of them almost a month after we got our first blue egg. I was pretty impatient, but a friend of mine reminded me that people all develop at different speeds, and chickens are the same. But by the time we had a brown eggs, all three Ameraucanas were laying. We started getting three to four eggs per day, which meant that we were now ready to start substituting store bought eggs with our backyard eggs.
So where are we now with things? Chickens are supposed to slow down their laying in the summer, but we're getting 3-5 eggs per day. We are moving umbrellas around the yard 23 times per day to keep our chickens in the shade while they're laying. We have exactly 14 water containers around the yard so they will stay hydrated. And two of my three kids love the chickens and cuddle them as often as they can (the other one is terrified of their dinosaur feet and their beady eyes). I had no idea how pet-like they would be.
And they all have names. They are:
- Kylee Henner
- Hei Hei (this one may or may not have had brain damage as a chick - very quirky)
- Not Hei Hie
- Ha Ha
Are chickens a lot of work? Kind of. I guess it really depends on the weather and how close to dying they are. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Aside from the wonderful eggs that we get from them, their poop is like garden gold. When my son cleans out the chicken coop and dumps the chicken poop into the compost, we all get excited for the high levels of nitrogen it's adding (okay, maybe I'm the only one in our house that gets excited about chicken poop).
So if you're contemplating backyard chickens, you would get a hearty Renaissance Dad thumbs up!
Friday, June 23, 2023
Wednesday, May 10, 2023
|How we all feel at Ikea...
Monday, April 17, 2023
But when I studied in Spain, my host family made gazpacho. Being the courteous young man that I was, I went to Spain planning on trying everything at least once (this only backfired one time when I ate a slice of pickled pigs cheek, which was as disgusting as it sounds. No offense to anybody who likes pickled pigs cheek). So as I took the first bite of gazpacho, I had low expectations. But boy was it delicious. I was sold, and upon returning to the States, I started making gazpacho for anybody I could convince to try it.
Wednesday, March 15, 2023
For years I've been eyeballing the window ledge in my girls' room. My wife and I have had several ideas that we've talked about, from a reading nook to a fort of some sort to a bookshelf. As the years have gone by, and other house projects have taken precedent, I have continued to ruminate on that space. Then, in a brief window of time when I needed a quick weekend project, I seized the opportunity.
Monday, February 27, 2023
Prep time - 30 minutes
Bake time - 1 hour
Yield - 1 loaf (one serving. Just kidding. Not really)
- 1 stick of butter, room temperature* (set out the night before)
- 2 large eggs, room temperature*
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup grated lemon zest (3 large lemons)
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
|A grater for zesting lemons
- 6 Tablespoons sour cream, room temperature*
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Monday, January 30, 2023
So recently when I went to the doctor, I was told that my system was shutting down from the stress of the past three years.
Anybody with me on this one?I am working my way back to health. One of the things I was told to add to my diet was something called Golden Milk. My doctor gave me a look like she knew I was going to hate it. When I asked what was in it, I was told that it has ginger, cinnamon, and turmeric. I was told that I needed to drink Golden Milk regularly for at least one month, to which I responded, "Since I like all of those things, if I like it can I drink it regularly?" And the answer was yes! I was told that I would be superhuman if I consumed this daily.
So here is the recipe that I came up with. It keeps it in powder form until you are ready to use it. Feel free to adjust the recipe to add more of the things you really like.
- 2+ T. powdered ginger
- 1+ T. cinnamon
- 1/4 t. ground black pepper
Mix all the ingredients together. Add one Tablespoon of the combined powder to 1+ cup of warm milk or milk substitute (I really like coconut milk). For a little bit of sweetness, add a dribble of honey. If you have a milk frother, froth it up!
Then just sit back and wait for the super powers to take root!