Review & Preview: 8/7/16

Review & Preview is a weekly post that features a review of last week’s blogs, a preview of upcoming posts and a random assortment of food-related thoughts, discoveries, and experiences that happen between posts. My hope is that this will serve an “in case you missed it” purpose, as well as give you a glimpse of what will be in store for the week ahead.


Last week’s posts:

PESTO: basil and spinach combine to amp up sandwiches, salads and pasta
CUBAN MEATBALLS: a ham/pork combo with pickles, mustard and swiss cheese
BREADCRUMBS: the secret to the perfect meatball


August has arrived and for gardeners in Iowa it presents the opportunity to preserve the flavors of summer to warm us up on winter days. Apples have been dehydrated, beets have been frozen, basil has been turned into pesto and added to the freezer, and 8 pints of salsa have taken up residence in my cupboard. Well, 6 now … they disappear very quickly in our house.


I was lucky enough to spend a couple days with a great friend at her family’s cabin on Clear Lake. Morning views like this, boat rides, fire pits, laughter, and great food can do wonders for your soul.

It is a good day when I open my mailbox and instead of bills, find this month’s Better Homes and Gardens magazine. It’s a great day when the last page of that magazine features picnic stuff! I especially love the Market Basket Backpack from Mur Lifestyle. I don’t often hike to my picnic spot but think it’s calling to me anyway!

I also found it interesting that BH&G had a “Did you know?” on that page that says the word picnic “stems from pique-nique, a term coined in France for a BYO wine dinner or a meal where everyone brought a dish”. A potluck with wine … perfect.


I am really looking forward to sharing a recipe that I made many times with my boys that both entertained them and filled their tummies: alphabet breadsticks. My younger son was home last week and helped me make them and photograph them and eat them! I had a memory of him standing on a stool so he could reach the cupboard as I looked over and saw his 6’3″ frame staging the pictures. As we approach the beginning of another school year, I thought I should try to add one more post to the Home-From-School Lunch category.

The flavors of the season come together in a summer succotash that is easy to make and is fantastic served warm or cold. This version combines fresh sweet corn, black beans, zucchini, onion, and sweet and hot peppers.

I also hope to add to the Foodventurous Files and share with you a couple of places my friend and I discovered in Clear Lake, including a farm-to-fork cafe that serves lunch and dinner “until it’s all gone”. Let me just say, they satisfied my bread pudding craving.


“Kind words are like honey, sweet to the soul and healing to the body.”
Proverbs 16:24

Have you ever seen a stranger and admired something about them? Maybe you noticed their outfit or hair style. Maybe their children said something really sweet or funny or were just really well-behaved. Maybe they went out of their way to help someone or to pick up trash that wasn’t theirs. Have you ever just complimented them out of the blue? Those unexpected kind words are almost always rewarded with a big smile and a slightly embarrassed “thank you!” The world needs more sincerely kind words.

Have a great week!

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