#TBT French Onion Soup

“This is every cook’s opinion –
no savory dish without an onion,
but lest your kissing should be spoiled your onions must be fully boiled.”
-Jonathan Swift

Everyone has different experiences that make them realize they’re officially old… For some it’s getting married, or having a baby, or getting into a graduate program (which I also just did *toot toot* <– my horn); for me, it was when I started having to Google the abbreviations that everyone was using on social media.

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Crock Pot Chili…

“Chili is much improved by having had a bad day to contemplate its fate.”
-John Steele Gordon

The beautiful thing about chili is that it’s so customizable and quick to put together. The problem with chili is that I tend to throw in everything but the kitchen sink, so when it comes out amazing I never quite remember what I did! This recipe, while fairly simple, is sooo good and easy to make for a cold winter night.

…Just two words of warning: man farts.

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I’ll Have A… Chinchilla!

Since moving (yet again) to a new apartment, I’ve spent most of my time lurking on Pinterest and using the things that said lurking has uncovered, to get craft-y and make some *pretty amazing* decorations… I’ve also opted to not get cable in the new place. I told myself I’d really start reading again, I’d expand my mind and sharpen my intellect.

“Give me a good sharp knife and a good sharp cheese and I’m a happy man.”
-George R.R. Martin

What has happened thus far is the discovery that I can watch the same movies an infinite number of times without getting sick of them. I have yet to decide what that says about me.

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Stuffed Poke Chops…

“Observe that noses were made to wear spectacles; and so we have spectacles. Legs were visibly instituted to be breeched, and we have breeches. Stones were formed to be quarried and to build castles; and My Lord has a very noble castle; the greatest Baron in the province should have the best house; and as pigs were made to be eaten, we eat pork all year round; consequently, those who have asserted all is well talk nonsense; they ought to have said that all is for the best.”

-Voltaire, Candide

Stuffed Pork Chops with Apples, Bacon and Smoked Gouda with a Honey, Rosemary and Sweet Onion Applesauce

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_ _ I was always the “good kid” in high school– I never attended a party until my senior year and even then I was usually the DD (ahh the life of a minivan driver). I didn’t imbibe, rarely broke curfew and was WAY too terrified to even attempt something as illicit as shoplifting… Any aura of “coolness” I may have accrued despite authoring a food blog, has officially been destroyed with these admissions but c’est la vie (“la vie” har har). Despite having absolutely no penchant for illegal activities, I have always had an intense fascination with criminal shows, from Law and Order in its many forms, to CSI and Criminal Minds.

_ _ One night during my freshman year of college, I had returned to Ithaca on a holiday break, and because my friend’s parents were sick of having us in the house, we scandalously went to hang out in a local park after-hours. When a cop car cruised by, everyone panicked and dashed for the woods– two boys ran the 4 miles to the other side of the forest before taking a wide loop back around; one girl stopped about 5 feet into the trees, realized we were being ridiculous and strolled back to the car to wait for the rest of us; and one other girl and I crouched low to the ground several yards in and I made her close her eyes with me, convinced that if the police were looking for us they would see the light reflecting off our eyeballs… really, Anna? In retrospect, we all should have recognized that loitering wasn’t exactly going to get us arrested, but the mass mentality of fear lead us all to act absurdly… and I learned that I had been taking in more lessons from those TV shows than I realized– it’s the smallest details that get people caught!

_ _ Perhaps because of this mind set, I don’t like using recipes from other people without giving due credit– it’s intellectual thievery! So it’s all that much more exciting to me when I make food sans recipe and it turns out amazing: I give you, stuffed pork chops with a savory applesauce paired with a light salad.

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Slow Cooker French Onion Soup

This is every cook’s opinion –
no savory dish without an onion,
but lest your kissing should be spoiled
your onions must be fully boiled.
-Jonathan Swift

Screen shot Soup

French Onion Soup with Sourdough Crouton and Gruyere Cheese

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_ _ It’s the small victories that make me the happiest– perhaps because not many “big” victories have come my way– but I choose to think that I simply appreciate the subtleties in life. For example, I spent 10 minutes this afternoon trying to pry the cap off my lipgloss, finally resorting to using the knife on a wine screw, and I rejoiced riotously (ok, with a silent fist pump… I was at work and I don’t want to talk about why I have a wine screw in my purse) when it finally came flying off. I celebrate when a person trying to pass in the right lane gets cut off and has to drop back; I’m delighted when the song I want to illegally download is on Limewire and doesn’t turn out to be an automated recording reprimanding me for pirating music; and I’m on cloud nine when a recipe that I try ends up being a delicious meal. I give you: slow cooker french onion soup!

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Kick Off Football Season…

“There were ruddy, brown-faced, broad-girthed Spanish Onions, shining in the fatness of their growth like Spanish Friars, and winking from their shelves in wanton slyness at the girls as they went by, and glanced demurely at the hung-up mistletoe.”

-Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol

Jalapeno Popper Grilled Cheese

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_ _ For about a year, I was employed at a club in Boston, during which time I was gifted many life lessons by simply watching the patrons- the most important of which is that drunk people are creepy, and absolutely LOVE the Eddie Money song “Take Me Home Tonight.” The real benefit of spending so much time in this ridiculous environment is that I can now drop some pretty awesome name-bombs: I got to watch Paris Hilton make a fool of herself lip syncing on stage; I ran straight into Sir David Ortiz lurking in a dark corner and nodded like an imbecile pretending that I could understand the words coming out of his mouth; but most importantly, I danced with Wes Welker and realized that off the field, not a single person knew who he was… GO PATS! As football season is heating up, despite not having my boy-o around to make me actually watch this season, I’ve decided to get in the spirit by making gameday type foods anyway. Enjoy these jalapeno popper grilled cheeses and finally admit to yourself that you’re only interested in the sport because of Tom Brady… GO PATS!

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