It’s November Already?

How did it get to be November? Where did October go? I realized it actually was a new month yesterday because every darn thing I do at work has the date on it. I’m not sure I’m ready for holiday planning or cold weather to arrive. Admittedly ‘cold’ is generally a relative term here, but still. I may have to turn the heat on in a few months.

Work was incredibly busy in October and both Bob and I caught what I’m pretty sure was the flu. Fever, chills, no appetite and tired all the time. It didn’t matter how much we slept, we slept more. Thankfully we see to be over the worst of it, and I get to get back to cooking.

About the only thing interesting I made over the last few weeks was a shredded beef with vegetables. I used beef broth, chili paste, garlic and balsamic vinegar and threw it all in the slow cooker. I roasted some vegetables in the oven and put it all together. This wasn’t bad. The beef needed more seasoning – salt and pepper – and it was way better a few days later. But not bad.

The pork chop with braised kale in a whiskey cream sauce was way better. I could have seared the pork chops a bit more, but is was worried about over cooking. So – sear the chops then deglaze the pan with whiskey – Jack in this case. After it cooks down a little add vegetable broth and the kale. Season liberally with pepper. Cook covered until the kale is wilted and the chops are just about 140 (about 25 minutes over med low heat) take out the chops to ready, turn up the heat and add a quarter cup cream. Add more pepper and stir until combined. I would have liked the sauce to be a little thicker, but the flavors here really worked. I added roasted butternut squash since that’s what I had on hand.

Today Mom and I hit the farmer’s market. I wanted a few things to make, but not a ton since the upcoming week is so busy. The had some really pretty lettuce, tomatoes and golden beets. I want to like beets. I keep trying to like beets, and today I think I found a way that they work. I roasted beets with some shallot and put them over the salad – red leaf lettuce, cucumbers, red and yellow cherry tomatoes and almonds – and used the roasted shallot to make a vinaigrette. The results were pretty darn good. Great fall flavors. I also made the farro salad again for tomorrow and later in the week.

My other little adventure this weekend if going to be this – a mini wine tasting. I read an article then checked out the site for a wine club. No commitment kind of thing so I thought I’d try it. For about seven bucks they sent us six mini bottles of wen to taste and rate.

20131102-151954.jpg You do the rating on line then about every three months they send you a mixed case of wine based on your taste. It’s a little over ten dollars a bottle and since it is only ever quarter, I didn’t think that was too much wine. We haven’t don’t this yet as both of us were sick the last two weeks, but I’m looking forward to it. And if we don’t like any of these, I just cancel it and we are done. Since I like trying different things, this could be fun for a little while.

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