Sunday, June 27, 2010

A Review of Mackie's in Port Stanley, ON

I finally made my first journey to Mackies'  in 2010.  Cameron took us out for lunch.  Here he is getting ready to go.

Mackies' food is hot and fresh and service is amazingly quick, especially considering the lineups that exist from May to September.  But there really isn't anything special about it . . . it's just good.  What really cracks me up is that we buy this food so we have something to put all the fabulous condiments on . . . mustard slaw, Mackie's sauce, onions for the hot dogs . . . Mackie's sauce, malt vinegar and salt for the fries.  And, of course, an Orangeade to wash it all down.





We went out to the beach after lunch and Hal & Cameron noticed the sea gulls all lined up along the edge of Mackies' roof like Toronto riot police . . .

. . . and then they all took flight at once.  I stood in fear as I heard plops hitting the ground all around me . . . I didn't get even one plop on me, thank goodness.

Selling Mom's Tea Cups on E-bay

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Sea-Shell-Planter-Fine-China-/220628680164?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7e7de4#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Woods-Ivory-Ware-bowl-/220628693007?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7eb00f#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Foley-Bone-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628691086?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7ea88e#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Westbrook-Bone-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628690283?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7ea56b#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Liling-Fine-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628688858?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7e9fda#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Castle-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628682809?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7e8839#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Stanley-Fine-Bone-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628684870?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7e9046#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Queen-Anne-Fine-Bone-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628686008?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7e94b8#ht_500wt_1154

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Banbury-Inn-Fine-China-Tea-Cup-and-Saucer-/220628687458?cmd=ViewItem&pt=LH_DefaultDomain_2&hash=item335e7e9a62#ht_500wt_1154

Friday, June 25, 2010

Swedish Meatballs and Potato Wedges with Rosemary and Garlic

This meal went over so well that Cameron cleaned his plate and Hal actually went back for seconds.  If you know Cameron and Hal you will know that this is nothing short of a miracle.


Swedish Meatballs

"Kottbullar" (meatballs) is a Swedish dish, traditionally served with boiled potatoes and a "lingonberry sauce", similar to a cranberry sauce.  The spice used here is the berry of a pimiento tree.  It is aptly named "allspice" because it tastes like a combination of spices, mostly cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

1/2 potato, peeled
2 tsp Italian parsley, fresh, minced
1/4 onion, finely chopped
1 large egg
400 g ground beef, lean
1-1/2 tbsp milk, 2%
1/4 tsp allspice powder
1/4 tsp salt
ground pepper to taste
2-1/2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp apple cider
2 tsp canola oil
2 tsp olive oil

Peel the potatoes, boil them until very tender, 20-25 minutes.  Drain well, then put them in a bowl and mash.

Mince parsley, add half to the bowl of potatoes and reserve the rest.  Add onion, egg, ground beef, milk, allspice, salt, and pepper.  Using your hands, blend the mixture together until it is just combined well (do not over mix).  Form the mixture into 2-3 cm balls and arrange them on a tray.  Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or up to overnight.  The purpose is to firm up the meat mixture.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together all remaining ingredients, including the reserved parsley, except the olive oil, until the brown sugar is dissolved and a sauce consistency is obtained.  Set aside.

Preheat the over to 350F.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat.  Working in batches, add the meatballs and saute until they are golden on all sides, about 5 minutes.  Transfer the meatballs to the prepared baking sheet and brush them with the sauce.

Cover loosely with foil and roast in the middle of the oven 25-30 minutes.  Alternatively, the meatballs may be threaded onto bamboo skewers and cooked on the oiled rack of an outdoor grill.  Serve the meatballs with any remaining sauce on the side.

Serves 4.


Potato Wedges with Rosemary and Garlic

2 potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 4 wedges
2 tsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 sprig rosemary, fresh, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Blanch potatoes in a pot of salted boiling water for about 5 minutes, then drain well.

Toss the potatoes with the olive oil, garlic, rosemary and freshly ground pepper.  Arrange the potatoes on an outdoor grill rack or an oven broiler pan.

Cook the potatoes on a hot grill or in the over for about 15 minutes, turning occasionally, until crisp and golden brown.  Season with salt and serve.

Serves 2.

Dinner was served with a green salad and steamed cauliflower.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

WOO HOO . . . I hit one out of the park tonight . . .

Supper was delicious tonight -- we both LOVED it . . . and I love trying new recipes.  Can you tell?


Lettuce and Tomato Salad

1 tomato
2/3 curly leaf lettuce
2 radishes
1 green onion
Salt and pepper

Cut the tomatoes into segments and place them in a salad bowl.  Add lettuce leaves.  Finely slice radish and green onion then add them to the bowl.  Pour in 2 tbsp Classic Vinaigrette.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Toss and serve.


Pasta with Sausage and Cauliflower

½ onion, coarsely chopped
1-1/4 cups cauliflower, cut into small florets
1/2 tbsp olive oil
2 Italian sausages
¼ dried chilli peppers, minced
¾ cup chicken broth, warm
2 cups penne rigate or other short pasta
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp parmesan

Keep the serving dishes in the oven at the lowest setting so they are warm when you serve.  Put a colander in the sink to drain the cooked pasta so that it will be ready when needed.  Prepare vegetables.  Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and sauté 2-3 min with stirring.  Remove the skin from the sausage, and then add the meat to the pan.  Break up the meat using a wooden spoon and cook 4-5 minutes until it loses its pink colour.  Add the chilli pepper (if the sausage is not already spiced).  Pour in the warm broth and stir in the cauliflower.  Bring to a boil then lower the heat.  Cover and simmer 10 min until the cauliflower is cooked al dente and the broth is almost completely absorbed.  Cook the pasta.  Drain the pasta then pour it into the frying pan.  Season with salt and pepper.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Toss well, serve in warmed dishes.


Strawberry and Banana Salad with Mint Sugar

1 cup strawberries
1 banana
2 tbsp fresh mint
1 tbsp sugar

Hull the strawberries, halve them and put them in a bowl.  Cut the bananas into small rounds and add them to the bowl.  Pulse the mint and sugar together in a food processor until finely ground.  Sprinkle the mint sugar over the fruit and toss gently to combine.  Let the fruit stand a few minutes before serving into cups.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Tomato Salad, Tofu Curry with Fruit, Basmati Rice & Fresh Strawberries

LOVED, LOVED, LOVED these recipes and I was sure Hal would too.  Wrong again.  The man likes tomatoes, fruit, rice, curry and he has unwittingly eaten tofu many, many times in Thai food.  But apparently I'm wrong.  He liked the rice and the strawberries . . . sigh . . . well I won't give up!!


Tomato Salad with Oregano

2 tomatoes cut into quarters
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
¾ tsp dried oregano

Put all ingredients into a bowl and toss well.

Makes 2 servings.


Tofu Curry with Fruit

½ onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
½ apple, peeled and cut into quarters
2 slices canned pineapple, cut into bit-size pieces
1 banana, cut into bite-size pieces
150 g watermelon, cut into bit-size pieces
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp curry powder
½ cup vegetable broth
220 g firm tofu, cut into 1.5 cm cubes
½ tbsp canola oil
¼ cup cream 15%
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat half of the butter in a pan over medium heat.  Add the onion and garlic, then sauté 3-4 minutes until they become translucent.  Add the apple and cook 3-4 minutes until it starts to soften.  Add the curry powder and sauté 1 minute with stirring.  Stir in the broth, and 3-4 tablespoons of the pineapple juice.  Cover and simmer 12-15 minutes with occasional stirring.

Gently press tofu between paper towels to remove excess moisture.  Heat the oil in another large, heavy skillet over medium heat.  Add the tofu cubes in single layer and cook with some stirring until just golden, about 4-5 minutes.  Transfer the tofu to the curry mixture.  Pour the cream into the tofu and curry pan, bring to a boil, then season with salt and pepper.  Keep the pan warm over very low heat.

Add the remaining butter to the skillet used to sauté the tofu cubes.  Add the banana and pineapple pieces and sauté 2-3 minutes.

Serve the tofu curry over basmati rice or quinoa.  Arrange the banana, pineapple and watermelon pieces on top.

Serves 2.


Steamed Basmati Rice
2/3 cup basmati rice
1-1/3 cup water
Salt to taste

Rinse the rice and drain it.

Pour the specified amount of water into a saucepan, cover, then bring to a boil.  Add the rice and salt.  Cover and cook over very low heat about 15 minutes without uncovering.

Remove the saucepan from the heat.  The water should be completely absorbed.  Should it not be, cover and simmer for a few more minuters.  Let stand, covered, 3-5 minutes.

Serves 2


Fresh Strawberries

2 cups strawberries, rinsed and hulled

I only made 2 changes to the recipes.  I used milk instead of cream in the curry.  I used steamed white rice rather that basmati rice.

My youngest grandson is . . . unique!

Cam stayed for a sleepover last night so he would be on time for an appointment at the pediatric dentist in London this morning.  He sleeps so well on our little pull-out couch . . . sometimes a little too well.  I had a heck of a time waking him up this morning.  But we managed.  Breakfast was dry cereal eaten as we drove to London.

This kid has a mind like a steel trap.  Not only did he point out the building we were going to, he told me I wasn't parking in the right place.  I assured him it was okay to park where I was and that I really did not like parking garages.  That's just one of my eccentricities.

The appointment went well, sort of.  The dental assistant installed the spacer without too much fuss from my little friend.  But when she took it out and said she was going to put glue on it and put it back in again, there was a lot of fuss.  When reasoning didn't work, I did my tough grandma routine.  "Now cut that out, you are scaring all the little kids!"  and he looked over to see 3 little blondies with huge saucer eyes staring at him.  He stopped fussing immediately, but he was not happy.

So no sticky food or really hard foods for Cam now.  Nothing to dislodge the new spacer, because he really doesn't want to go through that again!!

On the drive back home, Cam assured me he REALLY didn't want to go to school.  Tuesdays are my day out -- Ladies Day Out -- so I told him if he stayed with me he was going to have to spend the afternoon hanging out with my friends.  Apparently he was not offended by that idea.  So we packed up his cutter and glue and scissors and stamps and paper and colouring books . . . oh yeah I packed my quilling to play with . . . and off we went.


I wasn't sure what was in his school lunch, and I knew about his eating limitations, so we stopped at KFC for a Toonie Tuesday meal.  Now old Cameron is a pretty smart cookie and when we got to LDO he sold his school lunch to Great Grandma Joyce for $1.10.  (Grandma J had forgotten to pack a lunch).  He also threw in a chicken leg . . . LOL

We had a lovely afternoon visiting and crafting and just chilling out.  Lori brought in some of her Mom's stash to clear out and Cameron used his $1.10 (Plus I'm sure Grandma J added some extra) and bought 3 paper punches to add to his craft box.  Before Lori left, she added 3 ink pads and 3 deco scissors to his box as well.  Not bad stash enhancement, Cam!!  Thanks Lori for making his day.

After LDO, we went grocery shopping which he informed me was boring, but he wouldn't mind so much if there was peanut butter cups at the check out . . . yes, he got peanut butter cups at the check out.  We also had a quick but lovely visit with Krystle and her little darlings.  I finally got to see baby Finn (not so babyish anymore) in person.

It is amazing how much Cam talks when he has your undivided attention.  Quite the little chatterbox. And you just never know what he is going to want to talk about.  I guess Cam is learning about step-brothers right now because he sure had a lot of questions.  I was afraid we were heading for a birds-and-bees discussion but I was able to divert that to a conversation about judges and custody.  I explained that a judge had decided that the best place for T to grow up was with Mommy and Daddy and the judge was very smart.  Cameron agreed that the judge was very smart and T was very lucky . . . especially because Cameron was his brother . . . LOL . . .

I don't know who was more exhausted from our day's adventure, but it was Cameron who fell asleep on the drive home.

PS . . . here's a layout I finished on the weekend.

My youngest grandson is . . . unique!

Cam stayed for a sleepover last night so he would be on time for an appointment at the pediatric dentist in London this morning.  He sleeps so well on our little pull-out couch . . . sometimes a little too well.  I had a heck of a time waking him up this morning.  But we managed.  Breakfast was dry cereal eaten as we drove to London.

This kid has a mind like a steel trap.  Not only did he point out the building we were going to, he told me I wasn't parking in the right place.  I assured him it was okay to park where I was and that I really did not like parking garages.  That's just one of my eccentricities.

The appointment went well, sort of.  The dental assistant installed the spacer without too much fuss from my little friend.  But when she took it out and said she was going to put glue on it and put it back in again, there was a lot of fuss.  When reasoning didn't work, I did my tough grandma routine.  "Now cut that out, you are scaring all the little kids!"  and he looked over to see 3 little blondies with huge saucer eyes staring at him.  He stopped fussing immediately, but he was not happy.

So no sticky food or really hard foods for Cam now.  Nothing to dislodge the new spacer, because he really doesn't want to go through that again!!

On the drive back home, Cam assured me he REALLY didn't want to go to school.  Tuesdays are my day out -- Ladies Day Out -- so I told him if he stayed with me he was going to have to spend the afternoon hanging out with my friends.  Apparently he was not offended by that idea.  So we packed up his cutter and glue and scissors and stamps and paper and colouring books . . . oh yeah I packed my quilling to play with . . . and off we went.


I wasn't sure what was in his school lunch, and I knew about his eating limitations, so we stopped at KFC for a Toonie Tuesday meal.  Now old Cameron is a pretty smart cookie and when we got to LDO he sold his school lunch to Great Grandma Joyce for $1.10.  (Grandma J had forgotten to pack a lunch).  He also threw in a chicken leg . . . LOL

We had a lovely afternoon visiting and crafting and just chilling out.  Lori brought in some of her Mom's stash to clear out and Cameron used his $1.10 (Plus I'm sure Grandma J added some extra) and bought 3 paper punches to add to his craft box.  Before Lori left, she added 3 ink pads and 3 deco scissors to his box as well.  Not bad stash enhancement, Cam!!  Thanks Lori for making his day.

After LDO, we went grocery shopping which he informed me was boring, but he wouldn't mind so much if there was peanut butter cups at the check out . . . yes, he got peanut butter cups at the check out.  We also had a quick but lovely visit with Krystle and her little darlings.  I finally got to see baby Finn (not so babyish anymore) in person.

It is amazing how much Cam talks when he has your undivided attention.  Quite the little chatterbox. And you just never know what he is going to want to talk about.  I guess Cam is learning about step-brothers right now because he sure had a lot of questions.  I was afraid we were heading for a birds-and-bees discussion but I was able to divert that to a conversation about judges and custody.  I explained that a judge had decided that the best place for T to grow up was with Mommy and Daddy and the judge was very smart.  Cameron agreed that the judge was very smart and T was very lucky . . . especially because Cameron was his brother . . . LOL . . .

I don't know who was more exhausted from our day's adventure, but it was Cameron who fell asleep on the drive home.

PS . . . here's a layout I finished on the weekend.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Saturday was another To Do-y sort of day . . .


When it is warm I want to be outside.  When it is hot I want to stay in the air conditioning.  The humidity of the past couple of days has kept me inside.  But this has also meant I've knocked quite a few chores off my list.

I've been working on my family tree and the pile of information to be entered into the family tree program on my computer is beginning to shrink.

I've been working on a writing project or two and made great headway there as well.

I still have 3 UFO's from years gone by that are coming close to completion -- a tablecloth, a knitting project that must remain nameless because it is going to be a Christmas present, and a cross-stitch of a Thomas Kinkaide painting.  I have taken a vow that I will not start another needlework project until all my UFO's are no longer.  Considering a year ago when I took this pledge I had a closet full of projects, I'm rather pleased with myself.  I have some great yarn purloined from my cousin Kim and some quilt tops from sister Nancy that are calling to me, but I am standing firm.

And scrapbooking . . . I am actually scrapbooking . . . still doing photos from July 2008 . . . but of course I took a lot of photos that month.  July 2008 was a particularly busy month.