Monday, February 15, 2016

Christmas 2015, January 2016

Our Christmas had its ups and downs. We really did have a nice Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The sad part was Heidi got sick the day before Christmas Eve and was under the weather until the 27th of December when she started to feel better and she and I went shopping. Heidi stayed an extra day, her hubby Bill and my son Rodmond left the morning of the 27th, Neal of course lives in Gyserville so he was back and forth.

Our new tradition of having live Lobster, which we started about seven years ago was so decadent. I tried to convince my children that it is too costly but of course I was out voted. Heidi’s hubby Bill really insisted and bought dinner for us.  It certainly is so much easier on me since I used to cook Duck with all the trimmings. I miss it at times and tell myself I will cook one just for me, ha, ha.

As usual my kids surprised me and I received a Robot Roomba vacuum - so much fun and it helps my back. I still need to learn more about the Robot Roomba because even though I schedule the time I want to vacuum he has a mind of his own and starts vacuum in the middle the night sometime, yikes. Have not had a chance to study the whole manual because I got sick and was sick for about four weeks. I’m still not at a hundred percent but getting there. Neal was a big help these last few weeks and I am so grateful to have one of my children live close by.

Once I felt better and ventured out my car broke down and I had to take it into the shop, no fun! In the meantime I also had to have two new front tires. Isn’t the saying unexpected things come in threes? Hopefully this is the end of it and all will go smoothly from here on out. When unplanned obstacles happen I wonder at times why did I choose to live alone?! However I would not like it any other way, ha, ha.

I love living alone and love the town I choose to make home. I have a beautiful apartment and great neighbors and made good friends here in Healdsburg. Visitors from near and far makes life interesting and busy which is a good thing when you are a senior.

Our traditional  Christmas Eve dinner is Curried Shrimp Leek Soup has been for more than 40 years. I believe I posted the recipe in a previous blog. Will have to check that out.

I hope who ever reads my blog will stay healthy and happy and warm. Will attach a appetizer recipe which goes great with any special occasion especially at Christmas!

Portobello mushroom carpaccio

4 medium portabella mushrooms
extra virgin olive oil
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

extra virgin olive oil
balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic finely chopped
2 shallots finely chopped
2 ripe tomatoes seeded and diced
2 tablespoons capers
4 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese
6 fresh basil leaves chopped
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Mix olive oil and garlic in a small bowl. Brush the mushrooms with the garlic and oil mixture, place on sheet pan then season with salt and pepper. Bake in 350 degree oven until cooked through about fifteen minutes. (This can be done up to two days in advance).

Slice the portabellas 1/8 inch thick on the bias and arrange neatly on four oven proof plates. Mix the ingredients for the topping and spoon on top of the mushrooms. Put into 300 degree oven and warm through for about 3 to 5 minutes. Drizzle with olive oil and season with fresh ground pepper. Serve with crusty French bread.

Makes 4 servings

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