Tragic Sandwich

Food. Family. Fun.

Archive for the category “Restaurants and Food”

Sand Pail List, Revisited

Sand and Toys

In May, I created my “Sand Pail List” of things I wanted to accomplish this summer. How’d we do? Let’s take a look:

Going to the park
We did go to local playgrounds, but not nearly as often as I’d intended–except for when we were in Santa Barbara. We went to a lot of playgrounds in Santa Barbara.

Summer concerts
Not one. Turns out that the ones held in my friend’s town are on Sunday nights, which didn’t work for us, and we never investigated the ones closer to home. Maybe next year.

Going to the beach
We got to the beach three times this summer, and are going again once Baguette gets her cast off. Labor Day may be over, but southern California’s summer is not.

Swimming lessons
Happening right now! Well, not right now. But we’ve enrolled Baguette in the current session at our local Y, because you cannot keep her out of the water. (Me, either.)

Cooking
Err . . . I’ve done a little, but certainly not as much as I meant to. And I still haven’t gotten back to that farmers’ market.

Well, there’s always fall. What should I call that one–maybe Leaf Bag List? I wonder if that works in the land of no fall colors.

Photo by ~W~, via Flickr.

Advertisements

Cooking With Pinterest

I don’t believe in Pinterest guilt. Seriously, if you’re judging yourself by other people’s pins, then it’s time to step away from the computer and go play outside.

For me, Pinterest is primarily an inspiration board. I find things I like the look of, and I pin them. Easy.

But then, in my never-ending quest to streamline my day, I found a couple of recipes that seemed worth trying.

The Overnight Slow-Cooker Oatmeal seemed like a no-brainer. So easy! So oatmeal-y! So made in the slow-cooker!

It tastes just fine, but let me tell you, the cooking spray? Did nothing. I’m pretty sure there are oats welded to my slow cooker.

And the Egg Muffins?

Sure, they look harmless. And, after all, a friend did give me fresh chives. But again with the cooking spray #fail. I have no idea if I can return the pan to a usable condition. Also, they’re like rubber. I ate mine on the way to work; I can’t imagine that Baguette will eat hers. And I don’t blame her.

(And did I mention that I already knew that morning is not the time to experiment? But noooo, I’m going to make it work!)

Now I’m anxious about taking on other Pinterest cooking experiments–because while I really want to make this Chocolate Caramel Tart and these Nutter Butter Truffles (although I’m thinking about using dark chocolate), I can’t help but wonder whether I’ll feel mocked by the results.

What about you? Any Pinterest cooking failures? Or, more importantly, Pinterest cooking successes?

3 Things I Found While I Was Looking Around

3 Mosaic

I know. Normally it’s 5 Things I Found. But Baguette took a tumble off the bed and broke her leg, and my focus has been elsewhere. So, with no further ado:

Nerdy Day Trips

For those of us who are nerdy, and sometimes want to go on day trips. Not that I would know anything about that.

The World’s Most Romantic Travel Destinations on Global Grasshopper

I’m not going to argue about these choices.

How to Cook Real Good Cheap Easy Food on Imgur

Photo by Leo Reynolds, via Flickr.

5 Things I Found While Looking Around

5 Five

Watermelon Basil Agua Fresca on Kitchen Konfidence

It’s going to be hot this week. I may have to make this later today.

Dogshaming

Sometimes they just insist on behaving like animals.

The Most Striking Tourist Places on 1stTravelStar

I want to go to there.

Curiosity Rover Tracks on Lavoie Photography: Photo JPL

Seems like there might be some trademark infringment going on here, but I still like that we can see the tracks.

How I Know I Love You on Thought Catalog

Mr. Sandwich and I say things like this to each other all the time. We think them even more frequently.

Photo by renaissancechambara

Liebster Award, Round 2

Karen at Dinosaur Superhero Mommy has kindly nominated me for the Liebster Award.

Now I have to admit that this award has been extended to me before. But it doesn’t look like I followed the rules, which say that I should:

  • Share 11 random facts about myself.
  • Nominate 11 other bloggers.
  • Answer 11 questions about myself.
  • Ask 11 questions of my nominees.

Eleven facts:

1) I only ate chicken twice while I was pregnant with Baguette, because it grossed me out.
2) I don’t like carbonated drinks.
3) My passport expired a few years ago, and I feel really weird about that because until then, I’d had a valid passport since I was 10.
4) I was unsure about whether I wanted a dog until we adopted Wicket, and now I never want to be without one again.
5) I have known Mr. Sandwich since college, but we didn’t start dating until 11 years after I graduated.
6) Oregano gives me heartburn.
7) My younger brother used to tell people we were twins. I would follow up with, “But he’s three years behind me in school.”
8) I think there are places everyone should visit to get perspective. Those places include L.A.’s Skid Row, and Dachau.
9) I would really like to write a book.
10) I used to pretend to be a baseball fan so that I wouldn’t have to talk about football.
11) I am tired of being asked to fix other people’s writing problems at the last minute. Bring me in earlier, or leave me alone.

Eleven answers:

1) What would you do first if you won a million dollars? So many thoughts. Well, I’d pay off our mortgage and my brother’s.
2) What is your favorite room in your home? The living room. I love, love, love the paint color, and it’s where we keep the TV and toys. We do a lot of living in there.
3) What did you want to be when you were a little kid? A lion.
4) What is your favorite book to read to your child(ren) It doesn’t matter. We read what she wants us to read.
5) What is your favorite color? Blue
6) Which kid’s show do you wish was cancelled? We don’t have a lot of exposure yet, but it’s pretty easy for me to pick “Caillou.”
7) What is your favorite holiday? Labor Day, because it’s the one that’s coming up next.
8) What is the most expensive gift you have given someone? Probably the watch that my brother and I gave my dad for his 75th birthday, but I’m not sure.
9) Are you a good dancer? Depends on the kind of dancing. Going to a club? No. Ballroom/swing? Okay. Ballet? Not bad when I was a kid, but 30 years later I’m probably not very good.
10) How many kids did you think you would have as a child? Two.
11) What do you look forward to most about fall? I live in L.A. We don’t do fall here.

Eleven questions:

1) What was your favorite after-school activity?
2) What’s one fact or skill you remember learning from your favorite teacher?
3) What’s the most valuable piece of criticism you’ve ever gotten?
4) If you could only eat one vegetable for the rest of your life, what would it be?
5) Who is your favorite fictional character?
6) What color shoes are you wearing right now?
7) What is your favorite vacation spot?
8) What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done to your hair?
9) What time do you usually eat dinner?
10) What’s the best moment of your day?
11) What’s your favorite breakfast food?

Eleven blogs:*

Blogging with Mittens
Katie is a Teacher
Wandering Scientist

*”Hey! That’s only three!” Very true. I’ve been working on this post for two days. It’s very long. I figured I’d give everyone a break.

5 Things I Found While I Was Looking Around

5

50 of the World’s Best Breakfasts on Hostelbookers.com Blog

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day, and now that can be true in even more countries.

Portraits of Dogs as They Shake Off Water on Petapixel

For those days when you think, “My dog is so dignified. How silly could he or she look?”

10 Best Places for Escaping World Conflict on Expatify

When the revolution comes, you are going to thank me.

Your Age on Other Worlds
on Exploratorium

I’ll have to move to Saturn to be younger than Baguette, and even then she’d have to stay on Earth. Not worth it.

List of common misconceptions on Wikipedia

That thing you thought you always knew? It’s wrong.

Photo by duncan, via Flickr.

What We Ate on Our Summer Vacation

When we decided we wanted to go back to Santa Barbara, that naturally meant that we wanted to revisit some of the restaurants we particularly enjoyed.

First, though, we decided to cut down on breakfasts out–we rented a studio unit. However, it turned out that what we imagined to be a kitchen was actually a mini-fridge and microwave. I don’t think the place was misrepresented, I think we brought some faulty assumptions. But the mini-fridge did mean that we could pick up a few things at Albertsons and Lazy Acres (which is like if Whole Foods and Bristol Farms had a passionate affair that resulted in a really classy baby) and cut down on our meals out.

So where did we eat?

Some local friends introduced us to Cajun Kitchen, where we ordered a plethora of pancakes, eggs, and sausage. (Just assume we ordered this everywhere unless otherwise specified–one of our goals is to get Baguette to eat, and this meal is pretty much a sure thing.)

El Pollo Rico in Goleta featured BBQ chicken and “tri-tip” (actually skirt steak). Everything was a little dry, but the flavors were great and we did not go away hungry.

We had two dinners at Mesa Pizza Co.–I really liked the crust and toppings here, and Baguette is always a fan of cheese pizza. She’s also a fan of pepperoni pizza, although she’s as likely to discard the pepperoni as she is to eat it.

We also made two trips to Mac’s Fish and Chips Shop on State Street. While most of State could pass for a fairly generic mall that happens to have a street running through it, Mac’s was a find. Between the two visits, we ate fish and chips, bangers and chips, beef and onion pie, clam chowder, and Toad-in-the-Hole. Oh, and mashed potatoes. All delicious. We’ll be back when we’re here next.

Mac's Fish and Chips Shop

If you haven’t had McConnell’s ice cream, you may be able to find it in a Whole Foods near you. We were able to go to their actual brick-and-mortar location, and were not disappointed. While Baguette was intrigued but reluctant to share either Mr. Sandwich’s Golden State Vanilla or my Santa Barbara Strawberry (in a waffle cone, no less), she eventually mustered the courage to take a taste of my ice cream–at which point she yelled, “It’s a party!”

So, naturally, we went back for another party the next night.

By the way, Mad Dogs may have great hot dogs, but I’d pass on the shave ice. It’s not real shave ice–what they’re selling is essentially a sno-cone, and believe me, there is no comparison.

Our return visits were a mixed bag:

Farmer Boy, while one of our favorites last year, dropped from “leisurely” to “so slow we tipped badly.” The food was fine, but not good enough to make up for the incredibly slow service. I was on my third cup of coffee before the meal came, and that included waiting for the fresh pot–and a side order never showed up at all.

We were happier with Garrett’s Old Fashion, with fast, friendly service and good food. It was a marked contrast to the previous morning at Farmer Boy. When we made a final trip on our way out of town, not only did we again get fast service, but the waiter remembered that I’d ordered an extra egg for Baguette the previous day, and asked if I wanted that again. If we lived in Santa Barbara, I’d be a regular.

But I can’t decide: should I be happy or sad that Baguette can open a mini-fridge without assistance?

Drowning in Recipes

Recipes

Growing up, this is how my mother collected recipes. She’d write them on 3×5 cards and keep them in a recipe file box. She also had a variety of cookbooks, although her mainstay was The Joy of Cooking.

I have that same system, although I find that it’s where I’m most likely to keep family recipes–making pretty much any recipe file box much too large. Here’s how I store recipes (as you may guess, “Where is the recipe?” is often my first question in cooking):

  • The aforementioned file box
  • Ring binder of 4×6 recipe cards (my mother sent me off to grad school with this, and since it’s in her handwriting I will keep it forever–although I will always wonder why she included the recipe for escabeche when she knew I hated it)
  • Ridiculous number of cookbooks
  • File of Word documents on the computer
  • Delicious.com–which in spite of its name is not actually a cooking site–with a specific tag
  • My “recipe box” on Allrecipes.com

In fact, Allrecipes.com is where I’m most likely to go for new recipes. I know a lot of people use Pinterest, and I have a board with pictures of food, but I’ve never cooked from any of those recipes.

So how do you organize recipes? And why do I have so many cookbooks I never use?

Photo by pirate johnny, via Flickr.

5 Things I Found While I Was Looking Around

Five

“Smell Like a Monster” on YouTube

Thank you, Sesame Street! (And thank you, too, Wandering Scientist!)

Chicken, Mozzarella, and Asparagus Pasta on The Coterie Blog

Yum. Just, yum.

23 Fun Summer Bucket List Activities for Families on Parenting Squad

If August finds you running out of ideas for what to do with your kids, here are some more.

Cats in Sinks

You really shouldn’t need more explanation than that.

Calm

Perfect for the crazy days.

Photo by super-structure, via Flickr.

Traditions: Blogging, or Happy Anniversary to Me

Webster Anniversary Cake

As of today, I have been blogging for seven years. I think that hyperlinked text may be longer than my first blog post. So how has my blogging evolved?

In fact, (as you may be able to tell from that first post) I started two blogs–one was Cake Batter, and the other was Tragic Sandwich–which I later merged.

At some point I migrated from Blogger to WordPress, and haven’t looked back. (BTW, the “Tragic Sandwich” blog that’s currently on Blogger? Not me. I should have figured out how to keep that URL.)

It took me a while, but I did learn how to embed photos.

Over time, I got better at it.

What I write about has changed.

The structure of my posts has changed (I still like this one about disgusting wine, but I would definitely hyperlink it if I were writing it today).

With more years of marriage (Mr. Sandwich and I had been married for about 14 months when I started blogging), a home purchase, and most importantly the much-desired arrival of Baguette, my life has changed far more than my blogging.

That said, I am beginning to have an idea that I may be at the point where blogging starts to change my life. Fingers crossed.

How long have you been blogging? And what’s changed for you?

Photo by TN Something Special Cakes, via Flickr.

Post Navigation