Weekend Things

Hi!  How is December treating you?  For me, it’s been really excellent so far!  And even though I have a cold, I still did ALL THE THINGS this weekend because how can you not this time of year?  There’s holiday markets to peruse, menus to plan, movies to see, parties to attend and even some leftover time to read and relax.  It’s the best!

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Friday night we stayed in to cook ourselves dinner (Black and Blue Steak Salad + Mini Baked Sweet Potatoes) and watch my favorite Christmas movie, Scrooged.  You know when you’ve seen a movie a billion times, but you still find things to laugh at?  That’s this movie!  That part where Bill Murray wakes up in a frozen sewer and says “Where are we, Trump tower?” felt extra funny this time around.

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Saturday, after finally dragging ourselves out of bed, we posted up at Black Eye Coffee for toasts and Christmas menu planning.  It’s basically the same as last year, except we’re dry-brining the turkey and I’m really nervous/excited about it!  Since we were already out and about, we went directly from breakfast to Union Station for the Denver Flea.  I couldn’t feel my feet by the time we left, but we did get a little bit of Christmas shopping done, so it was worth it.

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Maybe took a afternoon nap, but then we went and saw The Favourite and guys, it is SO absurd and bizarre… I loved it!  It was actually less violent than I’d expected and all those incredible actresses give such knockout performances.  I can’t decide if it’s a refined Yorgos Lanthimos film or a toned down Yorgos Lanthimos film.  Joey was less enthused but he’s not sure if it’s because it was too weird or not weird enough.

The movie got out shortly past 6 PM and we maybe went to Hobby Lobby afterward to buy a stocking for our dog.  It seemed like a very uncool thing to do on a Saturday night but the place was packed so what do I know?  We had dinner at Pizzeria Lui, since we were already in the neighborhood and the pizza was borderline too hot in both senses of the word.  Made it through half of SNL before the whole day of exciting adventures caught up to us and we crashed into bed.

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Should I have just read and rested all Sunday morning?  Yes, but instead I made us pancakes, brewed/bottled some kombucha, cooked some beans and wrapped a few Christmas presents.  Then we made our way to a “Pregger Kegger” for Jory and Betsy, who are expecting a daughter in February!!!  It’s so exciting, I can hardly believe it!  Lori is famous for her diaper displays and this one did NOT disappoint.  I was very very impressed!  If you can’t tell, it’s a house divided when it comes to football 🙂

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Back at home, Joey watched the rest of the Cowboys game — I was doing my best to ignore all the yelling and read in bed, but I guess it was an exciting ending? — then we tag-teamed dinner/vegetable broth for soup later this week.  It’s the second time we’ve made this Autumn Vegetable Grain Salad and I’m still very into it!  Are you making your way through the second season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel?  Us too and that Catskills episode was giving us strong Dirty Dancing vibes.

Also, if December is not treating you well, please don’t take my opening paragraph as an insensitive brag.  This month, for all its gatherings, sparkly sights and gift giving, is also busy and stressful and easily derailed.  I’m trying my damndest to keep on the positive side, but if that’s not where you are, I get it and I know you’ll make it through ♥

Cooking Light

I can’t remember when my Mom first subscribed to Cooking Light, but her pile of ripped out recipe pages has been a fixture in our home for as long as I can remember.  When I received the news that the magazine was folding, my mind flashed back on so many small moments.  My mom sorting through her pile for dinner inspiration, me snapping a picture as I pulled the newest addition from the mailbox outside Joey and I’s first solo apartment, suggesting a subscription to my mother-in-law, many holiday meals based on recipes from the CL archive and far too many weeknight dinners that kept us fed both literally and creatively.  Would I be who I am without this magazine?

I’m not sure I can express how much this magazine has given me, from techniques, to tips, to recipes that I know I’ll cook for the rest of my life.  It has, of course, given me many flops.  Dinners that felt very cooking light and left me wanting twice as much sauce or seasoning as listed, but it has given me far more successes that kept me passionate about cooking and a believer in food that is both delicious and good for you.  As I flipped open the final issue, I felt a sadness so deep.  When I posted a picture of it on Instagram, I got responses from friends and family, whom I didn’t even know were subscribers, that let me know they were sad too.  This is a heartbreaking goodbye to a magazine that meant a lot to a lot of people.

I wanted to share some of our favorite recipes here, as a tribute and I hope, if you’re a Cooking Light enthusiast as well, you’ll share yours.  If we all keep cooking these recipes, Cooking Light won’t ever really be gone.

Simple Flaky Crab Cakes

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Creamy Butternut, Blue Cheese and Walnut Cavatappi

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Beet Wellingtons

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Black Eyed Peas and Cornmeal Dumplings

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Butter-Roasted Carrots

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Fettuccine with Tomato-Cream Sauce

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Cranberry-Almond Broccoli Salad

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Orzo Salad with Spicy Buttermilk Dressing

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Grainy Mustard Brussels Sprouts

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Orecchiette with Peas, Shrimp & Buttermilk-Herb Dressing

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Winter Salad with Roasted Beets & Citrus Reduction Dressing

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Salted Caramel Brownies

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Hasselback Apples

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