Swedish Meatballs over Duck Egg Noodles

Posted by johngl

Inspired by a trip to IKEA, a company founded in 1943 by a then 17 year old Swede named Ingvar Kamprad, I was (strongly) encouraged by most glorious spousal unit to make some “Swedish Meatballs.” She wanted them over duck egg noodles rather than the traditional boiled potatoes, and, since I had no desire to argue the point, I gave it a whirl.

I was sure I’d tried Swedish Meatballs at one party or another, but, as it turned out, what the host called those meatballs had little to do with Sweden and more to do with Italy. Since I’d never made them before, I was swimming in unknown waters.

Swedish Meatballs over Duck Egg Noodles

It turned out to be a nice swim.

Let’s get those duck egg noodles out of the way first…

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KitchenAid Pasta Extruder

Posted by johngl

Pasta is really pretty cheap. Even premium, so-called hand made dried pastas go for around $3-5 per pound at the local grocer. So why in the world would anyone spend $179 for a pasta extruder?

Pasta Press by KitchenAid

Personally, I think it’s because I had a real fondness for the Play-Doh Fun Factory that belonged to a neighbor girl named Robin back in ’65. Then again, I may have had the fondness for Robin and she just happened to have the Fun Factory. She also had an Easy-Bake Oven. Hmmm. That could explain a lot. Does anyone else remember the horrible taste of stuff baked in that thing? It was probably the lead paint giving off fumes or something (that really could explain a lot!)

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Classic Fettuccine Alfredo with Chicken

Posted by johngl

Technically, I am still vacationing.  My cell phone is in the off postion.  However, I am back in Austin for the recovery phase of the trip.  You will hear about my “Great Adventure on the High Seas” ad nauseum in future posts.

Besides going back to work, about the worst thing about returning from a great vacation is that one now needs to think about cooking one’s own food.  And grocery shopping.  And emptying the cat’s litter box.

Wanting to keep it simple (in the food prep area), I decided I would whip up some classic Fettuccine Alfredo:

Fettuccine Alfredo with Chicken
Classic Fettuccine Alfredo (along with some chicken)

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Not Really Homemade

Posted by johngl (200903221145)

As you have probably gathered by now, I was away from Austin for  a while. Nine days to be exact. This is the longest period that my most glorious spousal unit and I have been apart in over 17 years of marriage.  Unlike a lot of the married couples we know, we actually like spending time with each other.

Anyway, while I really like Seattle when it is clear and sunny (four of nine), I really don’t like it much at all when it is overcast and rainy (five of nine).  It reminds me of something out of Blade Runner (less the flying cars).  Throw in some mid-40’s daytime highs and it’s just no fun at all.

To welcome me home, the most glorious one prepared some comfort food.

Meat balls with roasted red pepper sauce and pappardelle
Meat balls with a roasted red pepper tomato sauce over pappardelle

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Review: The Salt Lick (Driftwood, TX)

The local institution that is the Salt Lick is a necessary stop for anyone, let alone a guest from Brighton, UK who likes Q. So, given this occasion, we grabbed a couple of bottles of wine (a Gnarly Head Zin and a Revolution Shiraz) and another group of five jumped into two small cars (a Civic and Matrix, neither large enough to comfortably seat all of us), and we headed south to Driftwood. Luckily, the Salt Lick is within a 30 minute drive from my house and we arrived before the parking area was full-up (it was a Saturday afternoon after all).

After waiting the twenty minutes or so under the shade of a copse of live oaks at a well-used picnic table, we were alerted that our table was ready. We moseyed (you can help but mosey at the Salt Lick) on over to the main feeding station and took our seats at another “distressed” picnic-type table. To make things easy, we all ordered “family style” and commenced the waitin’. We popped open the Revolution and poured it in order to give this heady concoction time to open up. We waited for our feeding long enough to begin a wonderin’ what happened, and finally, the first plate arrived. Pickles and onions. Hmm. Then the potato salad made it over. Then the slaw. Then the beans. Then, finally, the meat.

A couple of us looked at this paltry plate and one of our party immediately said that a lot more brisket was warranted. The plate had a good bit of sausage and some ribs, but only a couple of slices of brisket.

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