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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The Lazy Lady’s Version Of Pumpkin Cannolis…

“Hey, aren’t you going to stay to greet the Great Pumpkin? Huh? It won’t be long now. If the Great Pumpkin comes, I’ll still put in a good word for you!”

-Linus, It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

Pumpkin Cannolis made with Ice Cream Cones

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_ _ The absolute hardest part about trying to write on a regular basis for this blog, is coming up with something to SAY. I’m constantly trying new recipes, taking pictures of the food and making them usable for the site, but then they just sit on my desktop, mocking me: “Write something, dummy! Your two readers are waiting with baited breath!” I’ve always had trouble with the follow through, and my room is a testimony to this—stacks of unread books have been deposited next to my bed; three water glasses are currently sitting on my dresser (where I moved them from my bedside table) because I told myself that if they were a little closer to the door, I would remember to bring them down to the kitchen; and a pile of unfolded, clean clothes is in the corner, from which I continue to pick out one garment at a time as needed… But, perhaps to shut me up after all my whining about not having a job, the universe has sent me two awesome employment opportunities, so I’m trying to do the things that I’d previously been putting off before my life gets crazy, including posting some new recipes.

_ _ Although I was looking forward to the Fall, Colorado has thrown me a curve ball and went straight from Indian Summer, to hail and freezing rain, but I won’t be dissuaded! I’m going to continue to make food that involves an inordinate amount of apples and pumpkin and anything peripherally related to sweater weather.

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Apples Aren’t Just MacBooks…

“Good apple pies are a considerable part of our domestic happiness.”

-Jane Austen, Letter to Cassandra

Cinnamon Apple Cheesecake Bars Drizzled with Caramel

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_ _ Most of my generation has become completely and thoroughly digitally-obsessed. Facebook, Twitter and even the now outdated Myspace have taken away our ability to communicate with each other without the protective barrier of a computer screen… And not to rant (but I’m going to), the self-absorption involved with social media is mind blowing! It’s not as if this has never been said, but to honestly believe that your 1,250 “friends” will be interested in the fact that “Doug is wishing he was at the beach” is beyond narcissistic. Doug, we all wish we were at the beach. Thank goodness I have this blog, where I know EVERYONE cares what I have to say… Wah waaaah. Oh the harsh mirror of a reality check.

_ _ If you can pull yourself away from the fascinating updates of a constantly changing newsfeed, head to the kitchen and throw together these apple-cheesecake bars. You can even make that your status and see how many people “like” it.

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Crispy Apple Fries…

“By the time Halloween arrived, Harry was regretting his rash promise to go to the deathday party. The rest of the school was happily anticipating their Halloween feast; the Great Hall had been decorated with the usual live bats, Rubeus Hagrid’s vast pumpkins had been carved into lanterns large enough for three men to sit in, and there were rumours that Albus Dumbledore had booked a troupe of dancing skeletons for the entertainment.”

-J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Apple Fries with Cinnamon Sugar and Caramel Dipping Sauce

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_ _ As we grow up, we’re all told that we’re beautiful and unique snowflakes. However, time passes and we age; we become cynical; and we enter the job market, in which we are told there are at least fifteen other snowflakes applying for the same position that are just as qualified as we are. I’m not bitter… But I do have something that sets me apart. As you may be able to tell from the picture, I have what is non-clinically referred to as “toe thumbs.” Only 1 in 1,000 people have this affliction and I was mocked my whole life for my weirdly shaped appendages but after struggling with touch-screen texting and feeling unworthy to hitch hike for years, I realized that these bulbous digits are what set me apart from the masses… I can rejoice in my individuality! And I give these apple fries two big toe-thumbs up.

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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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Don’t Tell Me What To Do…

“You needn’t tell me that a man who doesn’t love oysters and asparagus and good wines has got a soul, or a stomach either. He’s simply got the instinct for being unhappy highly developed.”

-Saki,  The Chronicles of Clovis

Vegan Brownies

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_ _ If you’re anything like me, cleaning out your wallet is like taking a time travel back through the last 7 years or so. If you’re like my sister, you’ll only be traveling about a week, because she loses her wallet and/or cellphone on an infuriatingly regular basis… But I digress, this blog is about ME, after all… me, me, me!

_ _ As I rummaged through all the superfluous pockets and dark corners of my very old wallet, I found about 20 yellow Post-Its that I had scribbled all over, mostly while in a blind rage during one ridiculous job or another. Some of them were incoherent to me at this point, but some of them I greatly enjoyed: “life is a joke… existential. My life is a joke… fact.” I must have been having a good day. But most of these little notes were rants about my various supervisors, my feelings of their incompetence, and the way that they walked around as if they were better than me.

_ _ This frustrating attitude of superiority is something that I have encountered in many of my vegan friends, which, if they knew me at all, is exactly what makes me resist trying vegan food… But I finally caved when I found this recipe, and you would never guess they weren’t made with eggs or butter. Amazing.

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