It’s Soup Time, Bitches!

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Cooking, Food, Humor, Ideas, Recipes | Posted on 27-01-2017

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Give me your tired, your shriveled,
Your limp veggies yearning to breathe free,
The limp carrots from your teeming fridge.
Send these, the throw-aways, toss them over to me:
I lift my ladle from beside the golden soup.

Do you have soon-to-perish vegetables lingering in your fridge? Give those vegetables a purpose. Let them be soup!

Soup is easy. Soup is healthy. Soup is comforting. Soup is my friend.

This is what I do. I boil the carcass of a roasted chicken or a turkey in water. Remove the bones and whatnot. Add kosher salt and garlic and sometimes crushed red pepper, and bam, you have broth. (I have never written the word carcass. Now I’ve written it twice.)

Add any vegetables you want. Lately, I’ve been using cauliflower, purple onions, yellow peppers, celery, fresh cilantro, fresh spinach, and carrots. Chop away!

I try to use fresh produce, but sometimes, the carrots are kinda floppy. So, I give them a chance to participate.

Add the vegetables to the chicken broth. Boil, stir, then simmer.

And, bam, it’s soup time, bitches!

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If You Give a Girl a Knife

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Adolescence, Childrearing, Children's Books, Confidence, Cooking, Daughters, Encouragement, Food, Girls, Mothering, Mothers and Daughters, Teenager | Posted on 13-05-2016

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When my daughter was three, we gave her a mini kitchen with pots and pans and bins of plastic food. Pies! Peas! Corn! Sushi! Cupcakes! Fried Chicken!

She loved everything about food preparation and serving. She would “roast” a fake chicken, “bake” pies, and “chop” floppy carrots. For years, she would prep and serve us at her cafe. When she was older, she would write menus for us to order from. And she would expect payment.

Now at 13, her time spent in the kitchen has lessened and her cooking is infrequent. However, if you give that girl a knife, she’ll make a fruit plate in minutes. She chops vegetables like a Kitchen Knife Ninja.

On the sidelines at a recent soccer game, I was talking to some mothers about daughters and their lack of interest in cooking. I told my “knife story” about how my daughter is a pro with a knife.

One of the Moms looked at me like I was insane. You give her knives?? That’s scary!

Um. Pioneer women sliced open buffalo with knives.

It’s not like I handed my daughter a knife and ordered Chop Now! It began with safety skills. Duh. Don’t slice toward your hand. Watch those fingers.

Kitchen skills are about teaching confidence, self sufficiency, survival. Kitchen skills are life skills.

I mean, what would she do if she encountered pineapple?

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What Smells Like Ass?

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Childrearing, Children, Connections, Cooking, Dinner, Family | Posted on 04-04-2016

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What smells like ass? Asks my teenager son, as he walked into the kitchen.

Um, that would be dinner.

It had been weeks since I had prepared a “proper” dinner for my family.

After watching a few episodes of Cooked on Netflix, I felt nostalgic about cooking and preparing a wholesome meal for my family. The show documents various cultures around the world about food preparation and how, in our busier-and-busier lives, many of us have lost touch with taking the time and the steps to prepare a meal. Made with good ingredients and made with love. The narrator and author, Michael Pollan, says that we all have good memories of being “cooked for” and how that makes us feel cared for and loved.

When I have the time and make the time, I do enjoy cooking for my family. It’s just that they don’t always like what I cook.

That night, I baked potatoes. I broiled some cod with fresh parmesan. I roasted broccoli drizzled with olive oil. (Fish + parmesan + broccoli = stink.)

My intentions were to invite and welcome my family to the table. Yet, the smells turned people away. Except for Otis.

He was drooling.

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Teach a Girl to Bake Cookies and You Feed Her for a Lifetime

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Baking, Childrearing, Children, Cookies, Cooking, Kitchen, Life, Life Lessons, Mothers and Daughters, Parenting | Posted on 29-12-2015

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“Pippi makes the best cookies on Earth.” Everyone agreed. My soccer team agreed. My son agreed.

After years of baking and measuring and sampling and watching and learning, my daughter has learned the fine art of baking cookies.

Check out her gems!

The cookie-baking gene I acquired from my grandmothers has been passed down. This makes me happy.

"My Mom makes the best cookies on Earth."

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A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

A photo posted by PeskyPippi (@peskypippi) on

Cookies for Dinner

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Baking, Childrearing, Children, Cooking, Family, Humor | Posted on 03-09-2015

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I always seem to find time to bake cookies but not always time to make dinner. Priorities, I guess.

Let’s see.

Butter and eggs cover the dairy.

Almond flour covers the nuts.

Chocolate chips cover the yum.

So yeah, cookies for dinner practically covers all of the food groups. Add a banana and a carrot on the side. Serve with a glass of milk, and bam! Dessert and dinner all in one!

Cookies and milk for dinner. Practically all of the food groups covered. #winning

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Magic Pie

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Baking, Celebrations, Connections, Cooking, Family, Memories, Traditions | Posted on 24-06-2015

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We made a magic Key lime pie. Magic because it disappeared in one day.

The making of this magic pie was a family affair.

I sent my oldest son to the grocery store with a list of ingredients. And he nailed it! (Oh, by the way, sweetened, condensed milk is located in the baking aisle.)

My daughter helped squeeze the limes and grate the zest. And formed the graham cracker crust into the pan.

My youngest son? He helped all right. In fact, he helped eat two slices.

We all enjoyed a freshly made Key lime pie, a gift to my husband on Father’s Day–a tradition of ours. Except this was the first year that everyone had a role in the pie’s creation. Perhaps that’s what made it so magical.

We made a Key lime pie. It was magic. It disappeared in one day.

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Cake Hero

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Childrearing, Cooking, Magic, Parenting | Posted on 19-03-2015

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Sometimes I do something that amazes my children. OK, rarely. But when I do, I relish it and likely write about it. 🙂

For example, I made a rainbow cake for St. Patrick’s Day. It wasn’t that hard to make. It was actually a piece of cake. Har har. And the reactions I got?

Mom! You’re the best baker! 

This is the best cake you’ve ever made.

It looks amazing!

And stuff like that.

So basically, I was Cake Hero for a day. Actually I was Cake Hero for two days. Because with six towering layers, there was enough left for an after-school cake fest.

Bam!

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Just Add Wine

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Cooking, Humor | Posted on 02-10-2014

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Herbed chicken in a savory, wine sauce with mushrooms. The appetizing picture and complete-dinner-in-a-box at World Market sold me. Yum! Chicken Marsala! It’s what’s for dinner!

Throw it into a crockpot, just add water, and let it simmer. Right?

Wrong. Add chicken. Add chicken stock. Add mushrooms. Add wine.

Stupid-dried-sauce-in-a-box. I was sold a box of Stone Soup Chicken Marsala. So much for simple. So much for appetizing.

It’s a good thing there was extra wine to wash it down with. 🙂

No filter can make this chicken Marsala not look like vomit.

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We’ll Always Have Broccoli

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Cooking, Family, Food | Posted on 24-06-2014

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It’s time for dinner but what to make?

How about bacon and eggs? Rummaging through the refrigerator. Two eggs. Hmmm. Not enough to feed a family of five. Never mind, no bacon either.

How about hot dogs? The kids love them! Cloacas and all. Hmmmm. Hot dog buns, but no hot dogs.

How about an emergency pizza? I always stock the freezer with several pizzas “in case of emergency.” As in, I am too exhausted to cook. Or we are home too late from soccer practice. Or, a friend is sleeping over and we need to serve something fun. We are out of emergency pizzas. But there are two giant bags of frozen broccoli. Bam!

Can of soup? Yeah, OK. We do have lentil soup. But it’s low sodium and gaggier than my homemade lentil soup, which is like triple gaggy.

How about quesadillas? Um, we’re out of tortillas.

How about peanut butter and jelly? Out of peanut butter.

What about spaghetti? Out of spaghetti? Nah, I think we’re spaghetti’d out.

But there was bread. And cheese. So, bam. Grilled cheese sandwiches. Served with broccoli. Because, no matter how slight the groceries, we’ll always have lentils and broccoli.

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Dead Bodies. It’s What’s For Dinner.

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Posted by peskypippi | Posted in Children, Cooking, Food, Humor | Posted on 19-06-2014

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“Ew, what smells like dead bodies?” grimaces my nine-year-old son as he enters the kitchen.

Um. That would be the homemade spaghetti sauce simmering in the crock pot.

So yeah, after that comment, I knew that a quick stop at the Whistle Stop Cafe Baja Fresh to pick up burritos was my new plan for dinner.

Because, conjuring up that scene in Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe? Ew.

But the next day, after all of the spices in the “secret sauce” had blended, we all feasted on spaghetti.

And it was delicious!

Homemade spaghetti sauce. Made with dead bodies?

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