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archive for February 2010

the cost of spring

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Recipe: tortilla de patatas (spanish omelette)

Um, the cost of spring is apparently $8.50 for one adult! That was the price of admission to the Butterfly Pavilion in Westminster. I took my aunt who was in town on Tuesday. We had a blast checking out the incredible displays of insects, spiders, millipedes, scorpions and I even held Rosie, the Chilean Rose Hair tarantula. Her feet were so soft and furry and her step was light on the palm of my hand. What a truly gorgeous and amazing creature! But the real reason we went: the butterflies.

paper kite butterfly

The moment I removed my lens cap, my filter fogged up. It was so warm (dare I say, hot!) and humid in the Wings of the Tropics Conservatory compared to the cold and dry Colorado winter air outside. I suppose the word Tropics should have clued me in, no? Good thing I had a short sleeve t-shirt under my pullover. I was sweating within minutes. We enjoyed the variety of tropical plants almost as much as the variety of butterflies. Everywhere we looked we saw butterflies flitting, chilling out, taking off, landing, spazzing, sipping up nectar. They were enormous, delicate, exotic, simple, brilliant, striking, mellow, ADD (the postman butterflies were seriously spaz), but each one was fascinating. Every now and again I would look past the dense growth of flowering plants and catch a glimpse of the sunny, but snowy landscape through the glass. Oh yeah – it’s winter.

postman butterfly

But I like winter :) So for me the foray into this world of the colorful, humid tropics was nice in part because it was so stunning AND because it was short-lived. You can see more photos from the afternoon on my photo blog.

I’m unclear if it’s the whole Easter Bunny hoopla or just the association with the color yellow, but eggs have always been a springy and cheerful food to me. I love when Helen or Aran post their beautiful creations and have eggs littering the pages. They make me want to jump up and down like a kid and go running over to their respective kitchens to get my paws into the baking and my spoon in for a taste! So Aran has been tempting me for nearly a year with talk of her beloved tortilla de patatas.

simply put: eggs, onion, potatoes

medium dice on the onions

**Jump for more butter**

i am liking this

Sunday, February 21st, 2010

Recipe: friands

It’s rare that we get completely overcast days around here. The sun almost always makes an appearance. Even with clouds plastering the sky, the light is rather bright – especially when it is reflected off of all that snow in winter. We’ve had snow all weekend with only a couple of sucker holes (windows of blue sky) in an otherwise monochromatic landscape. Our snow is fluffy and squeaky – *squeak* *squeak* with each step. It offers no resistance when you kick through it and it sticks to Kaweah’s schnoz when she sniffs about for dead things.

that bright blob is the sun

on our walk this evening

she may be getting old, but she still loves to romp in the snow

A few weeks ago I was testing out a recipe I had been wanting to make for years. Friands. I had heard about them, seen them, even have several recipes for friands in various books, notes, and bookmarked blog posts. They are so cute that it’s hard to believe I didn’t get around to making them sooner. They are based in large part on almond meal and almond is one of my favorite flavors.

mix the almond meal with the powdered sugar and flour

stir in the egg whites

**Jump for more butter**

hello weekend

Friday, February 19th, 2010

Recipe: roasted cauliflower

So what does everyone have on tap for the weekend? There is snow in our forecast, which is always a very welcome event and I have heaps of projects to keep me busy when I’m not swooshing about. I am looking forward to making a few non-Chinese recipes this weekend because all I have eaten this past week is Chinese food. I understand that a large percentage of Chinese people eat Chinese food not just for one whole week, but for the entirety of their lives. I am not one of them. Otherwise this blog would have been named something else – certainly not use real butter.

scoping out the path of greatest powder at breckenridge

and away he goes

But before I blow this popsicle stand, I have a quick and easy recipe to share. The cauliflower elicits enough enthusiasm from people who love food, but for the general populace, there is an inevitable indifference or even dislike of the dense florets. That’s a shame. Far too many humble vegetables get short shrift because they aren’t well-prepared.

start with a head of cauliflower

**Jump for more butter**