huckleberry daiquiri bourbon peach cobbler grilled marinated chicken salad tuna poke bowl

copyright jennifer yu © 2004-2018 all rights reserved: no photos or content may be reproduced without prior written consent

archive for drawings

winner winner, chicken dinner!

Friday, March 30th, 2012

Recipe: thai red curry with tofu and basil

The hardest part of any giveaway is wrangling our “random number generator” to actually pick a number rather than stare at us expectantly for a dog treat. The next hardest part is finding ten toys that haven’t been completely ripped to pieces. We received a total of 213 comments (one or two were not “entries”, but that’s a real pain for us to shift things around, so they just don’t win if selected and we draw another number). You all shared so many sweet, touching, and hilarious summer memories – some that really tugged at my heart. Thank you for that.

So how did this work? Good question. We selected ten of Kaweah’s toys and assigned each one a number from 0 to 9. We piled the toys in the middle of the room and then got Kaweah all riled up so she’d run and grab a toy (she does this when she’s excited and there appears to be no rhyme or reason to her selection). This happened 15 times and generated five 3-digit numbers.

the random number generator machine

Each number (811, 977, 980, 766, 076) mod 213 resulted in: 172, 125, 128, 127, 76. Congratulations to: jwen, amanda, laura h, linda, and na! I’ll be sending your emails along to the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek so they can contact you about shipping your s’mores packages and give you details for the (awesomely) discounted rate at the Park Hyatt! Thanks to all of you for participating and many thanks to the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek for sponsoring this super fun Colorado giveaway.

Time to get tropical. The weather dictates much of my culinary mood. Typically I’d be cranking on the soups and stews, but with unseasonably warm weather lasting for more than a month (a week, I can hold out – a month, I cannot) I thought a compromise was in order. Something tropical, yet stewy enough to warm our tummies when we dip below freezing at night.

red curry paste, fried tofu, bamboo shoots, baby corn, straw mushrooms, limes, chiles, thai basil, coconut milk, fish sauce, sugar

slicing the fried tofu chunks in half

Southeast Asian food combines so many contrasting flavors that I find myself craving it often. It’s not just the sweet, sour, salty, herbal, creamy, and spicy, but the abundance of fresh and bright flavors that draw me in. This is a simple and satisfying Thai red curry that I like to throw together. [Edit: I buy the red curry paste at my local Asian grocer – Asian Seafood Market in Boulder.] I typically toss in whatever needs to be cleaned out of the refrigerator, but for guests, I’d prepare it as shown in this post. I buy the tofu already fried. They aren’t tofu puffs, but tofu pieces that have been fried and maintain a firm texture.

oil, red curry paste, coconut milk

add the tofu and vegetables

lots of basil

**Jump for more butter**

getting tropical in colorado

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Recipe: arepas with guasacaca

It has been snowing horizontally in my ‘hood for the past couple of days. I rather like the vertical snow more – you know, the kind that falls gently and accumulates so you can ski it? But I’ll take any snow we can get at the moment because we haven’t had our usual Big Dump Snow Day yet and it’s nearly November. Meanwhile, we’ve been taking care of business at home – like choosing who won the Doughnuts cookbook giveaway! Jeremy gathered Kaweah’s ragtag crew of toys, assigning each one a number and randomly distributing them in a line (that is, they are not laid out in numerical order). Then we recorded the number of the first toy she touched. We did this three times.

kaweah picked the number 557

Our number is 557. We had 274 qualifying entrants (I basically accepted entrants up until Kaweah had a number) and 557 MOD 274 is 9. Congratulations Emily Vigue! You’ve won a free copy of Lara Ferroni’s Doughnuts! I’ll send you an email to get your shipping address right away!

In case you’re wondering just how random my selection process is, my resident astrophysicist came up with the method and we had it verified for pure idiotic randomness by my friend and resident economist (also statistician), Erin. Not to mention – it’s Kaweah – does ANYONE know what goes on in that little brain of hers?

well, right now you know what kaweah is thinking

Erin and Ali came up yesterday so Erin could teach us to make arepas. Erin has been wanting to share arepas with us forever and ever. She learned how to make them the proper way in Venezuela. While I don’t particularly enjoy spending time in tropical climates, I am more than willing to partake of the cuisine. I’ve been wanting to try and blog about arepas ever since Erin mentioned them, so it all worked out. And if you see henna tattoos on the hands of our models, yes – they were at the party too!

start with harina pan

Erin told me there are two brands of harina that she is aware of and harina PAN is the one you want to use. You probably won’t find it in your neighborhood grocery store unless you are lucky enough to have a good Latin American market nearby (if so, color me jealous). So burn that image above into your brain because it is soooo worth it to make these delectable little pockets of savory amazingness.

pour the harina pan into a large bowl

add warm water

and some oil (and salt)

mix it together with your hand and let it rest

While you let the harina sit (Erin says ten minutes minimum, but the longer the better), you can make the guasacaca, a Venezuelan avocado salsa. Sounds like huasakaka – no hard G, okay? The ingredients are relatively easy to come by.

onion, jalapeño, parsley, cilantro, garlic, and avocado

blender it

You’ll also need a little salt, some white vinegar or rice wine vinegar, and oil (which you add last – always last). This might have come together easier had we used the food processor or if we hadn’t packed the leafy herbs in first. If you go the blender route and your blender sucks as much as mine does, then please blender the onion, vinegar, and avocado first. That will produce enough liquid to get the rest of the ingredients blendered properly, otherwise you’ll spend a lot of time pushing ingredients down toward the blade over and over and over again (with the blender OFF, of course).

erin finally gets the guasacaca to blend up

brilliant green color

**Jump for more butter**

making a mess – plus a giveaway!

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Recipe: eton mess

We’ve got three things going on here today, so keep your pants on! Are you ready?

First – I finished processing the photos from Antelope Valley. Serious orange-out is all I can say. That, and California poppies are my favorite wildflowers ever. Okay, I like the other guys too – I just love that there are so MANY of them.

tiny goldfields

poppies glow like little lanterns in the sun

If you want to see enough flowers to make your allergies tickle you can view day 1 and day 2 on my photo blog.

Next – we have a giveaway. I’ve been waiting to give this thing away for about… four months, but it had to get the stamp of approval from the law-talkin’ guys first. No matter, because it is certainly worth the wait. Back in December, I hosted a Nintendo-sponsored Wii Fit Plus party for my gal pals in Boulder! Easiest party I’ve ever had to host because all I had to do was send out invitations and show up. Nintendo took care of the space, the equipment, the food, and beverages.

fruit juice shooters

everyone was let loose to try the yoga and the games after a quick demo

we had a blast

Oh, that was seriously fun. What I love about Wii Fit Plus and the Wii in general is how it’s more than just a gaming system. It gets you moving and it can be a social activity (I’m definitely hosting Wii parties at my house!). Exercise made fun. I’m a big fan of the multiplayer mode. My favorite activity is the Rhythm Kung Fu.

that’s my Mii character

we even have a Mii pet for kaweah

The good people at Nintendo have given me an additional Wii and a Wii Fit Plus game and I’m giving them away here! You merely have to answer the question:

How will you fit some fit in with the Wii Fit Plus from Nintendo?

Let me translate: How are you gonna get your Wii on?

Here are the rules:

1) Leave a comment on THIS POST answering the question above by 11:59 pm MDT Sunday, April 25, 2010.
2) One entry per person. If you submit multiple entries, you will be disqualified.
3) The winner will be selected at random using a random number generator and announced on Monday, April 26, 2010.
4) Contest is only open to US residents 18 years or older.
5) Anyone related to me cannot enter.
6) Nintendo employees are ineligible to win.

Full disclosure: I received a free Wii™ system and Wii Fit™ Plus package (including Balance Board™) from Nintendo. The Wii Fit Plus party was entirely sponsored by Nintendo. The giveaway Wii system and Wii Fit Plus package were given to me by Nintendo, and I’m giving them away.

And finally: the recipe. California strawberries are popping up in the grocery stores around here. Yeah, I know they aren’t local, but who can resist a luscious red strawberry after months of winter? Heck, who can resist a luscious red strawberry ever? My favorite way to enjoy a strawberry is straight up, but a close second is an Eton Mess.


separate the egg whites from the yolks

**Jump for more butter**