• rave • We’re in Potty Training Land. The land where little buns run around in little undies and make the world a cuter place. It’s our second major ‘go’ at it, and there is no turning back now. I am under no illusions of speed or genius here. We are not a ‘trained in 2 days’ kind of team. But, Ry is getting it. She is starting to understand the mysterious ‘feeling’ that comes before you have to go. How the heck do you explain that to a three year-old? Truthfully, I admit I doubted her abilities. I thought with all her motor issues that the Potty and Undies were not in our immediate semi-normal future. I was/am wrong. Again. Way to go, Kid. We are so ridiculously proud of you for starting this step in your life. We have a long way to go, but Girl, you can make a gray sky blue. [This is our potty. We love it.]
• rant • I’m mad at Martha Stewart. I actually feel contempt towards her, which is extremely sad. I know. It all started when I saw her guest-judge a bunch of Kid Cooks. One girl made Sloppy Joes and offered Martha a taste. “Oh, I don’t eat that kind of food,” she replied. Then, on another episode, she took a bowl out of a child’s hand and emptied the contents herself because he was trying to ‘make it pretty’ and she said, “It’s all going to be stirred together. It doesn’t matter.“ And then, THEN PEOPLE! She was talking about invitations and how she was going to something special and blah blah blah… and her guest said, “Yes! Didn’t you see that at the bottom? You’re supposed to wear blue.” Or something to that effect… and Martha said, “Oh, that. I don’t pay attention to that kind of stuff. I just write down the event and time.” Are you freakin’ kidding me? How rude and snotty can you possibly be? That is absolutely unacceptable behavior. Time. Out. I like her ‘stuff’ so much… all her crafty gadgets and dishes and sheets. I really do. I suppose that’s a credit to her Craft Team, essentially. But I don’t like her. I just needed to get that out there so you know where I stand. I hope we can still be friends.
• recipe • Oh man, is this gonna rock your socks off. It’s just stew. Your basic meat and carrots and broth stew… but there are these potato dumplings. The dumplings, people… they may change your life.
from: Taste of Home, page 121
[Obviously, you can use your normal stew recipe, but here’s the whole deal if you like.]
Dust 2 pounds of stew meat with salt/pepper and flour (Thank you, Skeeter, for making this meal possible).
Dice 2 medium onions and saute in a dutch oven/heavy pot with 2T of oil. Add the dredged meat and cook until meat is browned and onions are beginning to soften.
To the meat and onions, add 21ounces (or close) of beef broth, 3/4 cup water (skipped), 1T red wine vinegar (I skipped this.), 6 peeled and chopped carrots, 2 bay leaves (I used one.), 1t. dried thyme, and 1/4t. garlic powder (skipped).
Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat. Simmer covered for 1.5 hours or until meat is almost tender. Discard the bay leaf.
In a large bowl, beat one egg (thank you, chickens for making this meal possible). Add 3/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs, 1T flour, 1T minced parsley, 1T minced onion, 1/2t. dried thyme, 1/2t. salt, 1/2t. pepper. (I forgot the onion and thyme. I’m pregnant.)
Stir in 2.5 cups of finely shredded potatoes.
Turn the heat up on your stew again so it starts boiling. Flour your hands and make little dumpling balls out of the mixture. Then roll each ball in a pile of flour and shake off before setting in the stew. Cover and simmer for another 30 minutes. No peeking! The dumplings have to cook.
I also added a small can of peas at the very end. In my house, stew is not stew without carrots and peas. It’s the only time I eat those vegetables, and the meal is incomplete in their absence.
So say-eth Katie Mulder. Amen.
Be warm and happy this weekend. Love to you all!