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Archive for September, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

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See this guy?  When I saw him I wished I could do what he was doing, though what he was doing specifically I couldn’t tell you.

I like to imagine he’s working on writing a piece of historical fiction.  He looks like a historical fiction kind of guy.  Of course he could be doing the paperwork for his construction business or something, but in my mind he’s an author.  Probably because I fantasize about being an author.

The best thing about historical fiction guy is the fact that he’s having a glass of wine while he works.  What a perfectly wonderful place to work, up in the trees, and with a glass of wine.  Wine and trees can be found at Cooper’s Corner in Fish Creek, WI.

That’s exactly where this guy was when I saw him.  The bar area of Cooper’s Corner is practically en plein aire on the second floor.  Husby and I spend a little time here when we visit Door County.  We sit and talk about our dreams and aspirations over a glass of wine or two while we enjoy the cool breeze blowing through.

The last time we were there I saw historical fiction guy.  It’s pretty unlikely that I’ll be buying a get-away writing abode anytime soon, so I decided I’m going to pack up the laptop and spend my summers writing at Cooper’s Corner with an endless glass of Pinot Grigio within reaching distance.

Cooper’s Corner.  All about dreams and aspirations.

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Dem Bones

I’m the luckiest girl in the world because I have a husband who cooks nearly every single night.  Every.  Single.  Night.  It’s a very wonderful thing and I appreciate it really a lot.  It gives me time to do my crafty stuff.  Or just sit around letting someone cook for me.  If I just sit around letting someone cook for me long enough I start feeling a little guilty.  I can feel guilty for a long time before I actually do something about it.  This weekend I decided to do something about the fact that I never cook.  I cooked.

We had a delicious meal of barbecued ribs.  I browned the ribs under the broiler early in the morning and whipped up a batch of my famous barbecue sauce, which I haven’t made for a long time because I don’t cook much anymore.  After the ribs were browned I cut them up into serving sizes and put them on a bed of sliced onion in the crock pot.  I poured a cup of my barbecue sauce on top of them and plugged in the crock pot.  Because I don’t cook much I realized an hour and a half later than I hadn’t turned the crock pot on.  Merely plugging it in won’t necessarily make it heat up the food.

No matter, the ribs were finished by 6:00 and were absolutely delicious with some au gratin potatoes and coleslaw.  The meat of the ribs came right off the bones and was moist and savory.

As we sat at the table after we’d finished eating I noticed the rib bones on our plates.  The first thing I thought of was I wonder if I could do a craft project with these bones.  I even said it out loud in front of Husby, who kind of laughed and said, “we could put them in the dishwasher and get them all clean, and then dry them in the sun.”  I thought for a minute.  Hmm…

After dinner I Googled “pork rib bone crafts” and I found this:

Bones

I got a little scared because I thought if we actually washed the pork rib bones in the dishwasher then set them out in the sun to dry Jesus might make them alive and they’d sprout little bone arms and legs and smiley faces and start dancing all over the back yard.  That was too much for me to handle.  The bones ended up in the garbage.

Yikes.

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Dive Night is a semi-monthly adventure undertaken by me and Husby, along with our friends Ruthie and Ray. Each couple alternates choosing a restaurant, one which must come under the category of “dive.” Our definition of dive: a neighborhood gathering spot with a laid-back atmosphere and good food. We’ll find the interesting hang-outs in the Minneapolis/St Paul area. Casual attire required. A sip of beer or wine doesn’t hurt either.

Once a year, if we’re lucky, the fearless foursome of Dive Night has dinner at the Minnesota State Fair.  It’s a good thing we all like the fair.  We don’t shy away from the crowds and endure the heat (which was tremendous this year) like real troopers.  Husby and I were hosts to the experience, so after meeting at the beloved Fairchild statue we headed out to The Garden.

The Garden has been serving food for a long time, but I’ve never eaten there simply out of habit.  Back in the day it was a beer garden and they may or may not have served food.  But of course I was much too young to go into a beer garden, so I pretty much passed it by even when I was of age merely out of habit.  Dive Night was the perfect opportunity to see what it was all about.

In the true spirit of an old-fashioned beer garden this building is very large and very loud. They even have live music in the form of bands and karaoke.

On opposite sides of the building there are two different “restaurants.”  One side serves Chicago Dogs, the other side is known as Ragin’ Cajun.  A nice variety.  Of course The Garden still serves alcohol of the beer/wine variety.

The Chicago Dog side of The Garden.

I love the animated neon – dancing hot dogs!

The Ragin’ Cajun side of the building.

The Cajun side had very large Mardi Gras masks hanging at the counter. They were kind of scary.

It didn’t take us long to decide what we wanted to eat.  The men went for the Chicago Dogs.  There were standard recipe hot dogs available, like the Chicago Dog, Chili Dog, etc., or you could get a hot dog with your choice of toppings.

Ray’s hot dog. The dog itself is 1/4 pound. They had a long list of toppings too. Looks like Ray got some onions and cheese, and probably some other stuff. Served on a very nice looking poppy seed roll.

Husby got one topped with sauerkraut and onions. It looks like he has some mustard, or maybe banana peppers?

Meanwhile, Ruthie and I went over to the Ragin’ Cajun side and both ordered a shrimp po’ boy.

The shrimp po’ boy comes with spicy shrimp, lettuce, onion, and a really good Cajun-spiced mayo sauce. There was a good amount of shrimp that was freshly prepared before going into the sandwich.

The sandwiches were loved by all.  For drinks the guys got a beer, I got a black cherry Mike’s Hard Lemonade, and Ruthie, obviously the most dehydrated of us all, got a bottle of water.

We couldn’t stop at po’ boys and hot dogs.  We had to get some dessert!  There is no better place than at the Minnesota State Fair to get something satisfyingly sweet.

Husby got some lefse. It was filled with lingonberry jam and topped with sliced almonds and whipped cream. I apologize for taking the picture too late. It was much prettier when he received it. It was hot and the cream began to wilt a little before I got the shot. Husby loved his Scandinavian treat.

Ray and Ruthie shared a funnel cake topped with raspberry sauce and powdered sugar.

I had a s’more on a stick. Everything is served on a stick at the fair. They put three marshmallows on the stick. Then they dip that in chocolate, after which they roll the whole thing in crushed graham cracker. There’s some kind of sweet batter over everything to hold it all together.

It was much easier to eat my s’more on a stick sans the stick and with the aid of a fork. So intense and pretty dang good.

So ends our Dive Night at the fair.  We stayed late and watched the fireworks, which go off every night after the Grandstand show.  All in all a very delicious and merry evening!

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