Sunday, January 2, 2011


If a woman tried to fail and did, did she fail or did she succeed?

This is New Year’s weekend and time to make the obligatory resolutions for self-improvement. My paradox this year is that my resolution is to NOT make any such resolutions.   There are certainly LOTS of things that I could and should resolve to do—a myriad of ways I could and should improve.  But you know what? I think I am already a little too type-A.  Some of you already know that, but it has become increasingly apparent even to me and so my resolution, such as it is, is to lighten up a little bit.  Laugh more.  And forget about self-improvement for a while.

Is that legal?  

Even if it is technically not against any laws, it seems to violate the spirit of the new year, doesn’t it?   

Oh well.  That’s my resolution and I’m sticking to it, even if it does feel like cheating.  Sort of like giving up liver for Lent.

Before the snow melted.
Speaking of food, the holidays were a real cooking frenzy.   Al and I made all the traditional holiday treats—Nana Robsky’s Christmas cookies and Al’s best gingersnaps ever, Linzer and Sacher tortes, and so on.  But, emboldened by the success of our new Thanksgiving Cranberry Pie (and thanks to Santa and his helper for the very cool cranberry cranberry pie pan) I tried some new recipes.  I now have a new favorite hors d’oeurve--Mushroom, Leek and Brie mini-tarts.  It began as a recipe from the Culinary Institute of America Cookbook, but I have modified it significantly enough that it is a very different now. I made four batches of these for various parties and they always disappeared quickly.  If you are interested, here is the recipe:
Mushroom, Leek and Brie Mini-tarts
  • 1 leek, white and light green parts only
  • 6-8 ounces of mini-bella mushrooms, coarsely chopped
  • Olive oil for sautéing
  • 2 Tbsp Madeira
  • 3 ounces of brie, rind removed
  • 30 mini phyllo cups
 1.  Slice leeks into rounds (1/8-1/4 inch thick) and cut the rounds in half.  Leeks are often gritty, so wash thoroughly and shake out as much water as possible.
2.  Sauté the leeks in olive oil until tender and translucent.  Add mushrooms, and brown lightly. Don’t overcrowd the pan or the mushrooms will become rubbery. 
3.  Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper.  Add Madeira and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated.
4.  Place phyllo cups on a cookie sheet and divide mixture between the phyllo cups.  Top each with a small square of brie.
5.  Bake at 350 for 15 minutes or so until the brie is melted, the cups are crispy and the filling is hot and yummy! 

I really enjoy creating new dishes.  Maybe I should pledge to make up a new dish every week and post it to the blog.  That would be a good resolution…

Oh wait.   I am already violating my own New Year's resolution.


Would it be breaking my New Year's  resolution if I tried to take a multivitamin every day?  That seems like a good idea, but I won't actually resolve to do it....

Today I am grateful for the 10 days that my family got to spend together.  It has been a long time since we just hung out at home and enjoyed each others company. 

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