Thursday, February 10, 2011

Pictures of the week

Couldn't help but post my favorite moments from the week...

Found them lying on the floor reading...melted my heart.

Owen's new favorite thing is to explore the world while standing...he has no idea that leaning too far to one side or the other results in falling.

It's amazing the things that will entertain him: laundry basket + a yo-yo were the winning combination today.
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Saturday, February 5, 2011

Adventures of a Bath time Bear

Bath time continues to be one of your favorite things. The anticipation of getting in that warm water is enough to drive you crazy! You love trying to catch the stream of water falling from the faucet as the tub fills. You are brave, sticking your face in the water to blow bubbles. You kick your feet and splash your arms vigorously whether on your back or tummy, I'm not joking when I wonder if you will be an Olympic swimmer some day. You are smart; you've figured out how to roll over both ways with out getting your face wet thanks to an appropriately positioned arm and shoulder. You make me laugh when you get water up your nose and sneeze in to the water with out fail. Bath time is like magic, when teething or having a cold makes you cranky, plopping you in the water makes you forget. Little Bear you are one of the greatest joys in my life.
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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Spiced Pork and Apricot Stew

I would like to introduce you to Spiced Pork and Apricot Stew, a recipe I discovered this past fall while perusing through the ever growing folder of recipe pages I have torn from various magazines. This easy jewel of a meal will transport you to Morocco, flavorful without being over-powering with meat so tender you can't help but go back for seconds. You can easily "set-it-and-forget-it" in your crockpot, or toss it all together in a large pot on the stove and simmer for several hours...either way the results are equally delicious with out much work. I have made this stew several times while living with my parents this fall/winter and simply doubled the recipe to accommodate a larger audience.

Spiced Pork and Apricot Stew
Compliments of Real Simple and the kitchen of Mary Frances
Serves 4

* 2.5 lbs boneless pork shoulder or butt, trimmed of fat and cubed
*1 TBSP paprika
*2 tsp ground cumin
*1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
*1/2 tsp cinnamon
*1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
* 1/2 tsp kosher salt and black pepper
*1 medium onion diced
*2 C low-sodium chicken broth
* 1/3 C apricot preserves (I use sugar free)
* 1 TBSP apple cider vinegar
*2 TBSP cornstarch
* 1 15 oz can of chickpeas, rinsed
* 1/2 C dried apricots, halved
*Extra: your choice of veggies- I've added carrot and cauliflower with success

Cooked Couscous or quinoa, sliced scallions and sliced almonds for serving

  1. In a large Dutch oven, toss the pork with the paprika, cumin, ginger, cinnamon, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. Scatter the onion over the pork.
  2. Add the chicken broth, preserves, and vinegar to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until tender, about 2 ½ hours. (If using a crockpot, set to low)
  3. After simmering time is complete, in a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and ¼ cup water and stir into the pot along with the chickpeas and dried apricots. Simmer, uncovered, until the cooking liquid is slightly thickened, 15 to 20 minutes more. Serve over couscous and sprinkle with the scallions and almonds, if desired.