Saturday, November 28, 2009

Dailure-Thanksgiving leftovers

Thanksgiving leftovers taste so good! I don't think there's anything better, for me, than a cold turkey sandwich, on whole grain bread or a baguette, a little mayo and a little mustard, maybe with a few tomato slices and lettuce.


This is not our house and I admit it is a bit exaggerated but it might as well have been our house because on Thanksgiving eve., 15 minutes before the guests arrived, the toilets, sinks, showers ALL backed up. Turkeys, stuffing, brussel sprouts, mashed potatoes, two pies were all warmed, the table was set and the Cava had been uncorked. All those around me remained calm whilst I dissolved in the middle of the kitchen. They picked me up (along with all the fixings) and moved 'us' to our friends house, Augustine and Irene, where we had a lovely meal with 17 other people. Timing!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


What am I thankful for; a lot, starting with my eldest child, who came home, then comes #2; Sophie, she just got home from Haiti, where she found the experience to be, "life altering". And then there's Daniel, who, when 'pushed', can be one of the most charming men I know, after my husband, Jordi, of course, who will rub my sore back, for hours, and knows just where to 'get' the hurting spots. Schmaltzy? Probably, but in these tough times (and in good times) I don't forget what truly makes me happy.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Focaccia Recipe!

from: The Italian Baker by Carol Field

Focaccia alla Genovese
(makes enough dough for three 9 or 10 inch round focacce or two 10 1/2 x 15 1/2 inch rectangular focacce.)

2 1/2 t. (1 pkg) active dry yeast or 1 small cake of fresh yeast
1/4 c warm water
2 1/4 c water, room temp
2 T olive oil
7 1/2 (approx) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 T fine sea salt or table salt

You can make this by hand, by processor or standing mixer. I use my Kitchen Aid mixer, so here are directions for that method:

Stir yeast into warm water; let stand about 10 minutes, til creamy.
Stir in 2 1/4 c water and the oil, using the mixer's paddle. Add flour and salt and mix until the dough comes together. Change to dough hook and knead at low speed for about 2 minutes, then at medium speed for another 3 minutes. Dough should be velvety and elastic.

(I like to finish kneading by hand, just so I am sure that the dough feels right)

Shape dough into a ball and place in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise til doubled in bulk, about 1 1/2 hours.

After the first rise, punch dough and cut into 3 equal pieces (if you are making round foccace), place on lightly floured surface. Shape each piece into a thick disc and roll out to 9-10 inch circle. Place in an oiled 9-10 inch pie plate (I use a cake pan). For rectangular foccace, cut dough into 2 pieces, roll out to fit 2 oiled 10 1/2 x 15 1/2 inch pans. Cover dough with damp towels and let rise for 30 minutes. (I use plastic wrap. If dough rises and touches the towels, it's hard to get off of the towel)

After rising for 30 minutes, vigorously dimple the dough with your fingertips, leaving indentations that are as deep as 1/2 inch. Cover again and let rise about 2 hours.

Brush 2-3 T olive oil on top of the dough, allowing oil to fill the dimples. Sprinkle with 1-2 t kosher salt (heavily, if you like salt!). You can also sprinkle the tops with rosemary, sage, olives, gorgonzola... whatever you like.

Heat over to 400 degrees. Use a baking stone and be sure it is preheated (for about 1/2 hour). Place pans on preheated stones. Bake for about 20 – 25 minutes. For the first 10 minutes of baking, spray the pans with water 3x (about every 3 minutes or so). This replicates the way Italian bakers keep the dough moist.

When baked, immediately invert the focacce onto cooling racks so that the crusts don't get soggy.

Eat these while warm or at room temp, on the same day that you bake them. Don't refrigerate. Focacce don't keep well.

Friday, November 20, 2009


Ouch! The medical term is Piriformis Syndrome. I know it as Sciatica and it hurts, like crazy and I can't sleep. Now I know why people go crazy when they can't sleep and complain when they have back pain. It radiates down my leg, into my knee. It's no fun. I hope it goes away, fast!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Funny Cat

So I decided that instead of downloading an image of a cat (that I don't know) I'd just talk about this ridiculous cat we have that chases it's tail, climbs the wall (literally) and sleeps upside down. She also lies right on the keyboard when I'm typing on my laptop and climbs onto the dining room table and makes herself at home in the middle of the table, while we're eating dinner! (cheeky thing). She's so fat because she's lazy. She makes me laugh.

Monday, November 16, 2009


Now I know why I live in Miami! The last few days (and nights) have been perfect; 72 degrees during the day, in the 60's at night, sleep with the windows open. It's understandable why people, who live in climates where the sun never shines get more depressed. When the sun shines it really is a mood elevator and when the sun shines and there's no humidity it's even better.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

FOOD is a GOOD thing

Not exactly a daily pleasure... but on this rainy, cloudy, lousy day up here in New England, I baked focaccia. I also carmelized red/yellow/orange bell peppers, and am about to assemble the afore mentioned items with mascarpone in the form of sandwiches. It's called focaccia alla peperonata... or something to that effect. Oh mama mia... SO GOOD!!! (P.S.: I cannot claim the lovely focaccia in the photo above as my own. I found the image online.)

Friday, November 13, 2009


Again, I have no clue who these medical students are but we had 17 medical students in the Lowe Art Museum and it was an amaaaaaazing day. They were so smart, 'into' looking at the art and 'into' VTS. It was a real high for all those involved. They gave enthusiastic evaluations and so hopefully they'll want to incorporate it into their curriculum.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Daily Drag-Fighting children

I Googled images for 'fighting children' and this strange image came up. What is going on here? Looks like an angel saving a child from the devil? Hmmm, wish I could say the same about myself! I've got two she-devil for children right now, who won't stop fighting. And I'm so tempted to let them duke it out. The problem is they are a lot bigger than I am so if I do have to intervene, I may just be the one who ends up with a black eye. I think this is a phase (I hope I hope) but if it's not I may have several more years of the back and forth. I'm supposed to know how to 'facilitate' conflict resolution??? I'm not doing such a fantastic job of it in my own house. Help.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


For our anniversary I received an espresso machine (okay it doesn't look exactly like that photo). It makes the best coffee and when I drag myself into the kitchen in the wee hours of the morning I love the sound of it grinding beans and then the smell of the coffee. It even 'foams' my milk for me. It practically runs itself. And the best part, it tastes fantastic. Again, I've said it before, and I'll say it again, it's that first sip!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Dailure-Hope's Blog

I love reading your blog in the early mornings, Hope. I'm glad you're back and that you had such a great time in Boston.


Seeing 'old' friends who I immediately connected with: Betsy, Cynda, Nanzo and Kate (vis-a-vie Skype).


I feel so lucky to have been able to spend some time in New England this last week. The leaves, the air, the houses, aaaah what a breath of beautiful country! I saw old friends, new friends and made some new friends. The medicine and art conference, held at Harvard University was very interesting and the hospitality of those with whom I stayed, was impeccable. Thank you much to all who made my trip wonderful!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


'Tis the season for Jasmine. This morning, on our walk, my neighbor and I smelled Jasmine for most of the 45 minute walk through the neighborhood. It's starting to cool off (finally) and so it was particularly nice.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Dailure Cheese

My downfall isn't chocolate, nor is it chips, it's cheese. To me there's nothing quite as tasty as a good cheese, with 'good' bread (home baked preferably) and an excellent red wine (doesn't have to be pricey). Once I get started tho' it's virtually impossible for me to put it down. And it does go down, oh so nicely.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Dailure - Golf

I never, in a million years, thought I'd enjoy golf. Yesterday, we went out, to the public golf course (very inexpensive) and played 9 holes with a friend. It was fun. Not only that it was a beautiful day, the sun was shining, the birds were singing and it was quiet. Jordi is a really good golfer, always fun to watch him and I actually could hit the ball. Nice way to spend a Saturday morning. If you want to see an hysterical account of golf watch Robin William's You Tube version,