Tag Archives: bed
Post by Alison Hein
The term “au gratin” translates literally from the French as “with the gratings” or “with the scrapings,” and refers to a cooking technique that requires covering a dish with breadcrumbs or cheese and baking or broiling until a golden crust is formed.
Something wonderful happens during that time in the oven – flavors are converged and merged, blended and deepened, harmonized and crisped. This habit-forming recipe results in a mélange of rich cream sauce, tangy cheddar, and softly baked eggs. The conclusion? A decadent morning mac & cheese, where the eggs play the role of pasta.
Once you’re hooked, try some of these (or your own) modifications:
- Place a layer of meat or fish (ham, cooked bacon, or smoked salmon) at the bottom of the dish before baking.
- Try some vegetables as a base – caramelized onions, wilted spinach, or roasted red peppers.
- Experiment with different cheeses (a parmesan / mozzarella combo, or a spicy jalapeño jack)
- Use a bigger baking dish, double or triple the recipe amounts, and serve this up for company (you may need to lengthen the cooking time for more eggs)
- Or, best of all, skinny it down by cutting the recipe in half. Make it just for yourself in a personal-sized ramekin for a decadent, mac & cheesy breakfast in bed.
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
½ cup grated cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
Italian parsley, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a small oven-proof dish (just large enough to comfortably hold 4 cracked eggs in an even layer) with cooking spray.
To make white sauce, melt butter in small heavy saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth, thick paste forms. Whisk in milk and cook until slightly thickened, 3 to 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Set aside and keep warm.
Pour half of the white sauce into the baking dish, then top with half the cheddar cheese. Carefully crack each egg into the dish. Cover the eggs completely with the remaining white sauce, then top with the remaining cheese. Dust the top with salt and pepper. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until cheese is melted, egg whites are fully cooked, and yolks are still soft. Cook eggs a little longer if you’d like the yolks to be cooked through, or cook under the broiler for the last minute or so for a browned crust. Garnish eggs with parsley and serve hot with buttered toast, if you like.
Makes 2 servings.
Post by Mark T. Locker.
Doomsday Preppers National Geographic Channel
I’m not a fan of most reality television shows; usually there is too much petty interpersonal drama, too much focus on people who seem to be terrible human beings. There are a couple exceptions to this rule, however. One of which has been survival shows like Dual Survival which offers a look at survival skills put to the test in a variety of environments. This is sort of the flip side of that coin.
Doomsday Preppers looks into the lives of people who are very serious in their attempts to prepare for the end of days. It’s a fascinating show. There seem to be two kinds of preppers: those who want to have the skills and resources to survive off the grid for extended periods of times and those who are mostly arming themselves for the inevitable marauders coming for their supplies (or, as I see it, people in need of help). I think some of these people have been watching too much Walking Dead. On the other hand, it’s pretty reasonable to want to be prepared for a major natural disaster. I’m going to stop short of creating homemade explosives to keep out unwanted people.
Each featured individual or family has a different predicted end of times, from massive climate change to global pandemics, to governmental collapse, which inspires them to prepare. Each also has a unique focus to their skill set, from raising massive amounts of rabbits to sophisticated communication systems. Very interesting watching.
Post by Mark T. Locker.
The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt. Pictures by Oliver Jeffers.
One of the best things about the new school year is that means new surprise books on library day. Last year I learned just how many different Lego and Star Wars-themed easy readers were being cranked out by unscrupulous children’s publishers. Goodness knows what this new year will bring, though I must say it’s off to an auspicious start. My boy was very excited to show off his new library book, and will good reason. The Day the Crayons Quit is a highly entertaining and original story.
When Duncan opens his box of crayons, he finds instead a series of letters to him, each penned—er, crayoned—by a different color. Yellow and orange write contradictory letters arguing over which is the REAL color of the sun. Pink feels snubbed because Duncan thinks it’s a “girl” color. Peach is mortified because Duncan peeled all his paper off and now Peach is naked! You can bet that gets a lot of laughs in our home!
I am not familiar with Drew Daywalt but Oliver Jeffers is well-known and well-loved in our home. Great book for kids 4-6.
Post by Mark T. Locker.
Hooray for 80’s classic film! Last weekend the city of Portland celebrated its annual Rose City Comic Con. Packed with second-string celebrity guests (and a couple big names) booths of artists and toy vendors, and hundreds of local comic and sci-fi geeks rocking some amazing outfits, Comic Con has become an annual tradition in my family. Only my son dresses up, sometimes as The Doctor, other times as a Jedi. This year one of the special guests was Sean Astin, known mostly for his role as Samwise Gamgee in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. But this is Oregon, a stone’s throw from Astoria, whose greatest attraction is the famous Goonies house. Before everything was all about Portland, those rare appearances in film gave us great civic pride. And though Kindergarten Cop was also shot in Astoria, the Goonies house has won the hearts of Oregonians for years. So, in celebration of Sean Astin’s visit to the Rose City, Comic Con featured a screening of The Goonies with Sean Astin as the guest of honor.
I’m not going to bore you with the whole plot of the movie. If you haven’t seen it before, you probably ought to. After a day filled with comic and fantasy fun, we thought we’d top off the evening with a private screening at home. It was my son’s first time watching it. And once he realized that Sloth was a nice guy, he really enjoyed it. How could you not? It’s got bad guys, adventurous kids, treasure maps, pirates, gold, a Feldman, and the SPOILER ALERT kids save the day and the Goonies house!
Seriously. I love that movie. I hadn’t seen it in years and it stands the test of time so much better than Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
Post by Tracy Kaler.
Now that fall has officially arrived, your bed might need some sprucing up for the change of season. Perhaps you’re considering an alternate coverlet or shams, a fresh set of sheets, or even a brand new mattress. Well, even if you’re on a budget, you can give your bed a fresh look without breaking the bank. You might try making your bed in a different way, and dressing it up in another fashion. Here are four different ways to dress a bed.
Bedding at the foot
A relaxed fold at the foot of the bed is one way to dress a coverlet or comforter. This one happens to be fairly unstructured, but you could certainly tight it up a bit depending on the thickness of your covering. Doesn’t this bed make you want to climb in for a nap?
A tucked band
Use a contrasting piece of fabric for a tucked band like this white Matelassé. Although neutral, 12 inches or so of white coordinates well with the throw pillows. Use a solid, or if you’re daring, a pattern. A floral, paisley, or abstract would be a great way to introduce color and interest on an otherwise solid, pattern-free bed. The key is to tuck smoothly and tightly. And you can experiment with different materials for the band; perhaps keep one for each season.
Tucked all around
You’ll need crisply pressed sheets for this bed dressing. Fold your flat sheet down over top of the covering, which could be a coverlet or blanket. Tuck all edges in and make a nifty fold in the corners. This clean style works best with an upholstered headboard and bed frame.
Covered in full
Not exactly feeling adventurous in the bed-making department? That’s okay! You can still have a stylish bed and keep it simple. With a fluffy comforter like this, the best way is to pull the covering to the top of the bed and under the pillows. This design is quick and painless for those of you with a tight schedule and little time to make the bed each day. And, the matching sham, pillows, and bright orange throw complete the look. See. It’s not that tough making a bed, after all.
Remember, there are no rules when it comes to making your bed, except to do it each day. And if none of the above suggestions suit, get creative and design one of your own.
What’s your favorite way to dress a bed?