just another nice evening

Tonight feels like one of those just-kinda-perfect evenings. I spent most of the day trying to catch up on things around the house — cleaning, grocery shopping and such — and felt like I was accomplishing nothing, but at the end of the day I actually had gotten things looking pretty good. There’s nothing like having a clean house. It’s a great self-esteem booster for me. :)

Going along with my domestication kick, I’ve been really into cooking and baking. During the camp season, messing around in the kitchen is pretty much out of the question for me. I just don’t have time with all the things I do. On camp days we eat camp food, and on the weekends we usually eat out. That can be fun, but it gets tiresome and expensive. Now that I have time to cook again, I’m really enjoying it. I love everything about food and food preparation (except maybe washing dishes!) and I love cooking for Ben because he’s so appreciative of everything I make. I guess you could call him a good eater. It makes cooking a lot more fun when you have an adoring and hungry fan. ;-)

Tonight I made salmon with a simple citrus-oil-honey mustard marinade, and veggies on the side, following a recipe I got from my aunt on vacation last week. We also had tandoori naan on the side. I like to warm them up, cut them into fourths or so, and serve them with fresh mozzarella. I had some bite-size fresh mozzarella balls that I coated in olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper and heated just a little (not enough to melt them, though). Stick a few of those in a warm piece of naan, and … well … I could eat a lot of that, jussayin’.

My aunt’s vegetable recipe is really pretty awesome. She made it when we were at the lake on vacation last week. Here, I’ll put in the recipe. (Hope it’s not a secret!) I mostly followed it ……… mostly. I just skipped the onion since I didn’t have one, and used oregano instead of thyme because I made a huge pot of chicken soup last night which was absolutely loaded with thyme, and I didn’t want to have thyme EVERYTHING. I also cooked it a little longer than I was supposed to, by accident …. when my aunt made it, the veggies were more crisp, but I didn’t take it out of the oven quite in time. It was really good that way too, though. I have a feeling I’ll be making this a lot because it’s easy to make and easy to change up with different vegetables, etc.

Aunt Carmen’s Oven Veggies

1/3 cup butter or oil
½ tsp dried thyme
¼ to ½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
3 cups cauliflower florets
2 cups broccoli florets
6 medium carrots, julienned
3 small onions, quartered

Place butter or oil in a shallow baking dish. Place in a 400 degree oven for 5 minutes to melt. Stir in thyme, salt and pepper. Add vegetables and toss to coat. Cover and bake for 25-30 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Makes 10 to 12 servings.

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And now I’m going to enjoy the rest of the beautiful view of the sunset out my window while I (you guessed it!) do homework. Have a great night everyone!

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