Cookie Time

So has the time to buy Girl Scout cookies already passed? When does cookie season start? I ask because the other day at Target we came across Dreyer’s Slow-Churned Samoa ice cream. OMG. It has big chunks of the actual cookies sprinkled in. They also had Thin Mint. Next time, next time.

Great weekend. Jack was invited to his very first birthday party. Mr. Gabriel Joseph turned two and celebrated with a Cookie Monster party at Caruth Park. You might think a Cookie Monster party would involve cookies. But you would be wrong.

How cute are these cupcakes??

Sweet Gabe had a wee bout of social anxiety during the birthday song:

I get it; it is kind of overwhelming to have all of those people staring at you. Why not just skip the singing and go straight to the cupcakes and presents? (Seriously, that is the cutest sad face I’ve ever seen.)

Jack enjoyed hangin’ out with the big kids. He showed off his latest trick: Blowing bubbles. AKA, drooling.

(Thanks to Lauren for the pic!!)

So a couple of notable foodie items from the weekend:

Today we met my brother for brunch at Hacienda on Henderson. I’d heard that this place was open LATE on weekends and assumed that it was just greasy drunk food. Not so. Their salsa is some of the best I’ve tasted; chunks of fresh tomatoes, onions, cilantro and jalapeno with LOTS of lime juice. And the chips are good too. Very thin and crispy.

I had a really hard time deciding what to order, but the waitress informed me that the tacos could be ordered a la carte so I didn’t have to commit to three of one type. Awesome. I went with one Hippie Taco (grilled portabella and squash), one Carnita Taco (braised pork with tomatillo sauce) and one Braised Short Rib Taco.

The carnita and short rib tacos were delicious, especially the pork.  The veggie taco was kind of boring- no seasoning on the veggies. The rice was unexpectedly tasty, too, and I like that they offer 3 types of beans (charro, refried and black… go with the black).

Also notable: This evening I tried one last recipe from The Big Orange Cookbook.

Roasted Cauliflower Curry with Toasted Almond Rice.


What is it with Rachael Ray recipes that they all use like 10 pans plus the food processor? Seriously, I’ve never run the dishwasher as much as during this little “project.” But the rice turned out wonderfully and the curry was pretty darn good, too.

A few notes:

  • There is no way this can be made in 30 minutes or less. I challenge you.
  • The recipe indicates that the basmati rice only takes 20 minutes to cook. NO. Try closer to 50.
  • It smells really spicy, but the taste is pretty mild. I added a lot of salt.

Other than that, I stayed pretty true to the recipe. It makes a LOT and is really filling, so there are plenty of leftovers for the week.

So after preparing 5 recipes from The Big Orange Cookbook, I’ve decided that it’s… just okay. There are a TON of dishes to choose from, but none of the ones I chose just knocked my socks off. I’ll likely make the cabbage soup again but that’s probably it. The recipes were more time consuming than I realized and not terribly cost efficient (shallots = $$$), plus the clean up was a bitch.

(As a reminder- you can view all of the recipes I tested under the “Reviews” tab at the top of the page.)

Any suggestions for the next cookbook to review? I have a couple of ideas.

PS- Check out Andrea’s blog for more cute Jack pics :)

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5 Responses to Cookie Time

  1. Julie says:

    Oh Gabe. So excited that you came out to play!!!

  2. gammypie says:

    I feel Gabe’s anxiety. I was the exact same way when I was younger.

    Those cupcakes are so cute. I can picture the blue lips and tongues from the frosting. Adorable!

  3. abbynormally says:

    Oh my I love those cupcakes!!!! I’m a cupcake monster!

  4. Patty Barteau says:

    My favorite cookbook is the Junior League of Tyler cookbook. It’s called Roses for the Table. You probably don’t have it.

  5. Tammy says:

    I feel Gabe’s anxiety. I felt the same way last year on my birthday. He sure is a cutie.

    And yes, it is ALL about the cupcakes.

    What about Giada’s Kitchen? (since I have that one, hehe)

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