Some food-related (mostly) things we enjoyed this past week:
If you follow this blog much, you might be aware that we have an annual tradition of meeting my parents in Houston over Labor Day weekend for what we fondly refer to as the “Baseball Extravaganza.” A new tradition was born this weekend, when we meet my parents and brother J in Minneapolis to watch the Astros take on the Twins. Although the ‘Stros lost, a good time was had by all and we hope to do it again next year and beyond. As we’ve mentioned before, Minneapolis is a surprisingly (to us, the first time we went) nice city and if you’ve never been, we highly recommend you go (but probably not in the winter.) In the summer, Minneapolis is a pretty glorious place to be. When we were there, the high temperatures were in the 70s (about 30 degrees cooler than what we are currently experiencing in Dallas) with sunny skies and blissfully cool evenings. Downtown Minneapolis is clean, with lots of flowers and greenery in planters along the buildings and streets. And if you like food at all, Minneapolis is crawling with tons of amazing restaurants. We had a hard time deciding among so many great options, but ended up having dinner at Crave, brunch at Hell’s Kitchen and breakfast at Manny’s, all of which were excellent. The ballpark in Minneapolis is also quite impressive, and serves a mean hot dog, as well as one of the best (and only) “slow-roasted pulled turkey” sandwiches we’ve ever tasted. Many thanks to J for hosting the first-annual “Minneapolis Spectacular!”
The upside to the Astros losing on Friday night was the post-game fireworks show that we could see from our hotel room window (while sitting on the window ledge and craning our necks to peer between buildings, but still — fireworks!) It was an impressive display.
We’re always looking for new week-day breakfast options that are healthy, quick, easy and delicious, with a bit of protein to help keep us full until lunch. This homemade egg, sausage and cheese sandwich fits all these criteria. It’s healthy because we used turkey kielbasa (leftover from our chicken & rice), mostly egg whites, low-fat cheddar and whole wheat English muffins (we almost always have these in our freezer, ready to toast, no thawing necessary.) And our mini, nonstick skillet makes it easy to cook the eggs in the perfect, sandwich-friendly shape. Crack the egg in the hot skillet (no butter or oil needed) and season with salt & pepper, while heating the sausage with cheese on top to melt in another skillet and toasting the muffins in the toaster, and you have a better-for-you “McMuffin”-style breakfast ready in about 5 minutes.
Gladiolus (“gladioli?” “gladioluses?”) are in-season, which means they are plentiful and cheap. I bought 10 stems for about $5 at the grocery store last week, which gives us pretty orange blooms in several different vases throughout the house. In addition to trimming the bottoms of the stems to get the right height for your vase, if you trim the tops (the flowering part of the stems) by cutting them at the top-most bud where you see some color, then the existing blooms should open up a lot more than they would otherwise. True story: for a long-ago career day as a kid, I drew a picture of myself working as a florist.