March 31, 2010

Roasted Mustard Pork-Chops Over Winter Veggies

Easy and delicious made-up recipe from the contents of our fridge, served to guests. Good Mustard is the key.

-1 pork chop per person
-port mustard from Heavenly Mustards
-1 cabbage, chopped
-1 cup leftover vegetable minestrone
-3 leeks from the garden, chopped
-olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 350F.
2. Layer cabbage and leeks in a baking dish
3. Pour minestrone over cabbage and leeks
4. Lather both sides of each pork chop with a liberal layer of mustard, place on top of veggies.
5. Drizzle with olive oil.


6. Bake for 20 minutes. Drizzle with more oil.
7. Bake for 10 minutes. Drizzle with more oil. Turn to broil.
8. Broil for 5 minutes.
9. Serve immediately and enjoy!



March 29, 2010

Tomatoes in Waiting

The latest post at Tech Law Garden shows the current state of the tomatoes.

All 362 of them.

But, what I'm most excited about are the varietals we're growing this year. After much experimentation last year, we determined that tomatoes with more flesh and less liquid were better for many of the uses we enjoy such as canning, sauces, roasting, salsas, etc.

Don't get me wrong -- nothing, and I mean nothing, can compete with a big juicy liquid-filled tomato in its prime during the height of tomato season. It's just that if you want to do something other than eat it raw, the liquid starts to be less and less useful, and this is balanced against the fact that the plants can only take up so much liquid, so production is lower for high-juice tomatoes.

Accordingly, we jettisoned many of last year's higher juice/gel-sac tomatoes in favor of more paste tomatoes. If it's a repeat, it's come from seeds I saved because we felt it was on the high end of quality when taste, heartiness, and production were taken into consideration. This year's 28 grown-from-seed entrants are:

-Amish Paste (new)
-Black Cherry (1-1 1/2 inch diameter cherry repeat)
-Black from Tula (medium/large purple from saved seeds)
-Brown Berry (3/4 - 1 inch diameter brown repeat)
-Coustralee (ruffled, large, pink, repeat)
-Federle (new)
-Green Giant (huge green-when-ripe beefsteaks, repeat)
-Green Zebra (small green and yellow striped globes, repeat)
-Health Kick (new, high lycopene)
-Heinz 2653 (new)
-Howard German (new)
-Husky Cherry Red (compact, hearty, determinate, disease resistant, good for lower sunshine locations, repeat)
-Japanese Black Trifele (dark brown shouldered pear shaped tomato with potato leaves, delicious repeat)
-Kentucky Beefsteak (huge, orange, prolific, favorite, repeat)
-Mini Carol from seeds saved from fruits grown from Knapp's Fresh Veggies (sweet, early producer, orange minis, repeat)
-Orange Russian 117 (red-orange/yellow striped beauty, medium/large, repeat)
-Powers Heirloom (new)
-Principe Borghese (new)
-Purple Calabash (new)
-Purple Russian (new)
-Roman Candle (new)
-Sun Sugar (sweet and delicious saved for repeat, although supposedly a genetic hybrid, so perhaps not..)
-Super Marzano (prolific red paste tomato that does well in pots with sufficient calcium, VFNT (disease resistant), repeat)
-Sweet Horizon (orange oxheart, repeat)
-Thessoloniki (red juicy taste test winner in our home, medium sized, repeat)
-Top Sirloin (largest tomatoes from last season, huge red beefsteaks, late bloomers, amazing, repeat)
-Viva Italia (new)
-White Oxheart (white oxheart with amazing sweetness and acidity, a favorite, if not the favorite from last year, repeat)

March 28, 2010

Sister has a new last name

I am sad, but much, much, more happy.

It was a beautiful event.

March 23, 2010

Need to Evolve

Tonight, while catching up on facebook with some very long lost friends, I encountered this response:


Seriously. I have no idea.

And I parse language for a living.

Google had no good first-page answers.

Am I supposed to dig deeper than that?

*very confused.....*

March 20, 2010

Reason Number 10,004,079

Why my husband is awesome?

He religiously looks up the ISS passes over our hometown, and insists that we go outdoors to view them when they are good.

So, tonight, while at our local Mexican Joint with H and O and baby-in-the-oven, we all ran outside at 8:17 PM to view the bright ascent of the ISS across the sky. Our hasty departure caused many of the waitstaff to follow us, and they were impressed enough to run around back and clear out the kitchen so that they could see it too.

E proceeded to show pictures of the ISS on his phone and explain its purpose, height, speed, etc, to all within earshot who stopped by our table to ask what? why? how come?

I was so proud.

Also, it was one of the best viewings I'd ever had, so it was very cool to share it with all of these folks who'd never seen it before (and many who'd never even heard of it).

March 17, 2010

Smart Reader?

There is something very disturbing about the fact that a smart grid energy meter in silicon valley looks like this:


I swear I saw something like this next to Buck Rogers in a Sci-Fi flick as a kid, no?

March 15, 2010

Nitroglycerin Paste is Serious Stuff

So, I'll spare you the details, but I thought you might like to know that one recent morning, at around 5 AM, I ended up with nitroglycerine paste on my hands without realizing it.

I can now report that nausea, sweating, tunnel vision, numb hands and feet, feeling that you are going to pass out, and moaning are all symptoms of severe low blood pressure. I'm shocked that I didn't pass out as my blood pressure was 55/30 or something along those lines when E measured it.

The good news is that if you wash your hands (or rather, in my case, have your husband hold you upright while he washes your hands because they don't work), you very quickly return to normal.

Moral of the story: wear gloves both while applying the paste *and* while removing it, even if you are using what you believe to be a sufficient barrier to remove the cream. Also, probably a good idea to wash your hands after each step just to be sure. Next time...

March 13, 2010

Brrrr..... Beautiful

Grand Teton National Park (yes, the French Trappers named it after tatas) is the only national park with an airport in the middle. So, the landing and take-off views are amazing, if a bit surreal:


The national park service has maintained Alaskan-style army snow-shoes from the 1940s that park visitors use, which contributes to the general lost-in-time feel of the undeveloped wilderness (that is occasionally interrupted by the 757s overhead):



Every morning, I looked out my window to see this:


The one day I was able to ski, it was a white-out. But I did manage to sneak in a few views of the entire valley from the mountain between the fog and snow patches:


And, it seemed like every day, no matter where we went, we were presented with a majestic view of one sort or another:




I'm not normally the kind of person who loves the winter. But I must admit, there was something very calming about the constant stark beauty of the cold and the muffling quiet from the snow.

I heart Grand Teton National Park.

March 10, 2010

Different, but the same

Last night, I sent my final contract for the day to a client at 10:48 PM -- not so different from working at the firm.

Except, of course, I also fit in my run in the AM, opened my business bank account, had lunch with E, and fit in a post-work run/walk with B -- definitely different from working at the firm.

I'm very much looking forward to a month from now when the majority of the start-up administrative stuff is complete and I can just focus on working for my clients and self-education when I'm *working.*

March 6, 2010

The Great Race

Well, after months of preparation, I'm finally out on my own as a solo practitioner.

I'd planned to spend the first week away from the firm on vacation. And, I did. Somewhat.

But I also ended up with many more requests for work than I expected. And you can't really start a business with "no." So, I worked, and relaxed in Jackson Hole and ate good food, and worked out and got a massage, and even went skiing on the last day.

Despite all of my preparation, I had several surprises (do doubt the first of many), and I had to scramble to manage them.

Today, my thoughts are with our friends who are starting the 24 Hours of LeMons in the hilarious rebuilt 1986 Nissan 300ZX.

Their entry is titled, "Church of the Lost Cause" and you really should check out the pictures of the car.

Despite all of their preparation. I'm certain they are in for several surprises as well. I can't wait to hear their stories