Stupid Simple Cooking Blog at

Stupid Simple Cooking

Jul. 22, 2012 10:46 pm 
Updated: Jul. 29, 2012 5:23 pm
I promised that I'd tell you how to get other people to cook for you. Here's how it's done. First, you're going to need a boat. Although any nice set of stairs will do the trick. But really, a boat is best.  About a month ago we had our boat moved from the Great White North (Puget Sound) down… MORE
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Jul. 9, 2012 7:30 pm 
Updated: Jul. 16, 2012 7:55 pm
So I've been in Tampa for over a year and have yet to have a Cuban Sandwich. It's that whole bread thing. I know, I know, there are other Cuban foods. But really, the Cuban Sandwich is so iconically Tampa that I've no real desire to try anything else, what with that whole gluten-free dining… MORE
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Jun. 14, 2012 7:44 pm 
Updated: Jun. 17, 2012 10:56 am
I jumped online tonight to tell you about my "authentic" Mexican dinner and saw my last entry was in January. Well, carp! I've been gone a lot this year, tending to Mom after 2 surgeries. She moved in with us in May and it's been an adjustment, for all concerned. Hardest for Mom, of that I'm… MORE
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Jan. 11, 2012 8:39 pm 
Updated: Jan. 14, 2012 9:06 pm
Ever since moving here to Florida (1 year next week!) I've been on a cost-cutting mission in my kitchen. We used to spend (for 2 people) about $600 a month on groceries. That number does not include meals out, just what we cooked (microwaved) at home.  We've all heard that eating fresh,… MORE
Turkey Sandwich, Anyone?
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Jan. 10, 2012 11:58 am 
Updated: Jan. 11, 2012 7:03 pm
Since several bloggers have lately mentioned they're beginning to use the Menu Planner, I thought I'd share my tricks for making it work better for me. I use it routinely, and it's very easy, but it does some neat stuff AR doesn't mention. Just keep this one thing in mind; Menu Planner is… MORE
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Jan. 8, 2012 11:14 am 
Updated: Jan. 12, 2012 9:42 pm
Last night I decided to begin work on my Asian cooking project. I began with a delicious-sounding and easy recipe, Asian Lettuce Wraps. Lots of good ingredients, I liked the flavor profile. It took a quick trip to the grocery store for the butter lettuce, water chestnuts and to find a GF… MORE
Asian Lettuce Wraps with Lime Cilantro Rice and Napa Cabbage.
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Blake Jedi (2 1/2)
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Jan. 7, 2012 12:53 pm 
Updated: Jan. 8, 2012 6:40 pm
Mother Ann's latest blog triggered a very fond, and most inspiring memory, so of course I must share. Back in the 80's, Mom fell in love with a man who showed dogs. Little ones. Ugly ones. Yup, Pekingese. Well, the cliche was triggered, she learned to love the dogs, and eventually they… MORE
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Jan. 6, 2012 2:52 pm 
Updated: Jan. 18, 2012 2:49 am
I've been tossing out resolutions willy-nilly for a few days now, and they all center around food, so I thought I'd share them with you. In no particular order, they are: 1. Do more Asian cooking. For years, I didn't eat Asian, largely b/c it wasn't presented to me as a child, ever, and then… MORE
New Townie
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Jan. 5, 2012 6:11 pm 
Updated: Feb. 6, 2012 12:22 pm
I studied Chemistry in college, for 2 years, aced my courses, and was a terror in the lab, ruining the curve for everyone else. Chemistry is easy.   I colored my hair yesterday, and wasn't the least bit hesitant. I'm a natural brunette, but blonde for the last 5 yrs, lots of highlights, etc...… MORE
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Dec. 21, 2011 9:00 pm 
Updated: Jan. 3, 2012 12:48 pm
Steve and i are celebrating a lot of "Firsts" this year. First Christmas in our home in Florida. First Christmas with Sean, Stacey and the 4 Grands that doesn't require someone to stay in a hotel. First warm winter (YES!!). First retired Christmas, the list goes on, but what it all comes down… MORE
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Living In
Wesley Chapel, Florida, USA

Member Since
Jan. 2010

Cooking Level

Cooking Interests
Grilling & BBQ, Asian, Mexican, Southern, Healthy, Quick & Easy

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About Me
I'm a young retiree, happily settling into the Florida lifestyle with my husband, Steve, a retired Naval officer. After 10 years of living on opposite coasts, we're now 2 minutes from our son and his family, including our 4 grandsons, ages 3-11. We love going to their soccer and football games, and they get really cranky if they don't get to see Nana and Papa every week. Bliss! Since moving here in January 2011, we've really embraced the lighter side of life, from cooking to cleanup. That means grilling, of course, and Steve has taken to it with a vengeance. I've risen to the challenge by thinking of new things to grill (new for us, anyway) and new ways to do it. We're having a ball. In May 2011 I was diagnosed with Gluten Intolerance. Bummer. But I'm making the best of it, cooking so much more from scratch than ever before, and loving the tastes and textures of this fresher way of cooking. Allrecipes is my homepage!
My favorite things to cook
All-day meat sauce for pasta. No, seriously! There's just something so satisfying and visceral about it. Maybe it's the aroma filling my home. Maybe it's the tinkering. You know; taste, add a pinch of this, a dash of that. Have some wine. Repeat. I think it's the purest expression of love from a cook. I like to invite others to taste and make suggestions. Of course, there's no recipe for this at all! It's just a labor of love, and the slow, easy pace is like catnip, enticing guests to come join in and linger in the kitchen. Heaven! UPDATE: There IS a recipe for this now; Mock Bolognese Sauce, in my Recipe Box. Take a peek.
My favorite family cooking traditions
We used to have many, all centered around Thanksgiving. 2 kinds of cranberry sauce; one homemade, the other slices from a can. Yes, I know, but my mother thinks it's the bomb. Green bean casserole, always from cans. Aunt Shirley's extra-fluffy mashed potatoes. Sadly, most of my mother's sibs are gone now, but I'm making new traditions with my son, who is one fearless cook! We've finally celebrated a holiday season that doesn't include a plane trip, enjoying our Florida weather so much that we skipped the formal dinner in favor of a pool party, complete with ribs, potato salad and baked beans. We may have started a new tradition of our own.
My cooking triumphs
Chicken Tacos, making it up as I went. Turned out so good, so perfectly seasoned, I had to write it down so I could do it again. Simple? You bet! Lame, for sure, but that's the dish that taught me to just 'go for it!' and helped me shed my fears of working without a net (recipe). I've had many successes since then, but that one dish will always be my reminder that this isn't rocket science, it's cooking! The worst thing that can happen if I screw up completely is that we go out for dinner, and that's not so bad!
My cooking tragedies
Oh, they are legion. But as with my triumphs, one stands alone. Whipped cream! The very first time I made it I was a young bride, eager to impress my groom. It's cream and sugar, what could go wrong? Plenty, as I found out. First, it's a bad idea to turn your hand mixer to HIGH and plunge it into a bowl of cream. Take my word for it. After I washed down the walls and took a shower, I opened another carton of cream and did better. For a minute or two. Very soon I found myself calling my mother to ask what these little yellow things in my whipped cream were. "Butter," she replied, then explained to me the mechanics of churning butter. We didn't have freshly whipped cream that night, but the next morning we had plenty of sweet butter for our biscuits (from a can!). My mother and I both love to share this tale, as almost every bride has a similar story to tell, of tragedy and mother's love. It's humbling and comforting at the same time.
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