Is anyone an Eddie Izzard fan?


I am.  In a big way.  To the point that on long car trips I tend to recite 20 minute long excerpts from his stand up performances.  The poor souls locked inside the steel box hurtling along the highway with me at speeds too fast to take a gamble on tucking and rolling have learned to love him as well.

Of course, it doesn’t take much convincing to become a fan.  He’s just that funny.  And irreverent.  And other adjectives as well.

So naturally, a few years ago, when a Chicago stop for the show he was touring was announced, I got myself on Ticketmaster and bought a pair of seats.   They were nose-bleed seats, but I didn’t care.

The beauty of Eddie’s stand up is that it’s like watching an amazing jam band.  It’s not really scripted.  I’d imagine that he’s got topics to use as inspiration when he goes onstage, but the lines he comes up with on stage are pure gold.

You literally can’t write that stuff.

My favorite part of that show was when he started in on the topic of hashish, and how back in the day, assassins were trained and taught to smoke hashish to prepare them for their duties.  So, as he claimed, they really should have been called…wait for it…HASHASSINS!


Trust me, it’s far less punny and way more hilarious when he says it.

And that, my friends, was the longest explanation for a loosely relevant post title ever.

Ta da!

All that was to say that I made hash for dinner tonight.

A week or two ago, I saw a post for white bean hash on How Sweet It Is and decided that I needed to make it.

Of course, I can’t leave well enough alone and had to fudge the recipe a bit.

I didn’t buy bacon because as much as I love it, I know I’ll use 1/3 of the package and let the rest of it sit in the fridge while I concoct completely ridiculous recipes for it which we all know I’ll never make.  And then it goes bad.

But chicken sausage I can finish.  Especially Smoked Andouille chicken sausage from Trader Joe’s.

And potato is just necessary in my life.  Especially in hash.

Because this is the hash that I grew up with:


Anyone else?  Remember the teeny tiny cubes of potato?  How did they make them so small?

And as horrible as it is to emulate a canned food that is just about as close to SPAM as you can get, my hash has to have little cubes of potato in it.

Andouille White Bean Hash
adapted from How Sweet It Is

2 smoked andouille chicken sausage links, quartered lengthwise and chopped
1 leek, split, trimmed and rinsed in cold water
1 small potato, boiled until just tender and cubed
1 can cannellini beans
onion powder, chili powder, black pepper to taste
1 oz sharp cheddar cheese

Saute sausage over medium heat until beginning to brown, remove from pan.

Add leeks and potato to pan and saute in sausage renderings, plus additional oil if necessary.  Once the veggies begin to caramelize, add beans to pan.  Sprinkle with spices, stir.  Add sausage to pan and stir to allow flavors to mingle.

Top with cheese and allow to melt.

Jessica served hers with a fried egg.  I was going to do that, but I decided at the last minute that there was plenty of food without it.

The onion powder is a nice addition since leeks are basically very mild onions and it brings out the flavor even more.

I could eat a huge bowl of this.

Think if I offered Eddie some he’d join me?  Or would that be hasinine? 😉


It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Love Actually

First of all, thank you for your kind words about Mosey.  It’s weird not seeing her walking around or sitting on her usual blanket.

But if I’ve learned anything, it’s that all pain subsides with time.  And wonderful family and friends (including blog friends!) always help, too.

On a much brighter note, I’m finally starting to feel Christmas-y!

Yup, that’s my Christmas tree.  Isn’t it pretty?  I’m such a Suzy Homemaker, I should probably start teaching Home Ec.

Does Home Ec still exist?  I miss being able to give people homemade doilies for Christmas.

Ah, much better.  This is the 2nd year I’ve used this tree (it was my sister’s tree back in the day, but now she’s got a family and a house in the suburbs and upgraded to a real live tree) and I forgot how intense it is to assemble.

You not only have to actually decorate the tree, you also have to assemble each branch individually.  I’m not sure what kind of fascist came up with that idea, but it’s a good thing I’ve got wine and Food Network Christmas specials playing in the background to keep me feeling the spirit.

Oh, and a big batch of comfort food.

It was a long Monday at la oficina (beginning with a visit from the local P.D. before 9 am, which you heard me complaining about if you follow me on Twitter), so some quality comfort food was in order for tonight.

When I got home, I had a small crisis of indecision.  I had an acorn squash staring at me with “come hither” eyes, but there was also a chunk of sharp cheddar cheese and bag of whole wheat penne whispering sweet nothings in my ear.

Roasted squash or mac ‘n cheese?  What should I choose?

Uhh…both, obviously.   I roasted the squash while I cooked the pasta and made the cheese sauce (with the addition of onions, garlic, sun dried tomatoes and spinach).  Once the squash was mostly done, I crammed as much pasta in each half as I could, sprinkled the tops with some panko bread crumbs and finished them in the oven.

Oh, yes.  I’m glad I went with both my guts.  Now all I need are some sugar cookies and a jolly man in a red suit.

Better call my boyfriend. 😉


You Know It’s Bad When…

…you don’t even want to make a stop at Trader Joe’s.

Usually I look forward to my weekly (ok, sometimes twice weekly) trips to the mecca of quality inexpensive food, but not so much this week.

I blame day light savings.

(Don’t worry, I did eventually make a stop at TJ’s.  No funk can keep me away for too long.)

Which may also be the reason why I’ve been craving potato chips like you wouldn’t believe.

Don’t ask me how the two are related.

I saw a recipe on Angela‘s blog a while back for salt & vinegar chips and decided that I need to make my own.

If you asked me to eat a chip of this variety 10 years ago I would have made a face that would make a baby cry but I have become a fan of the whole salt & vinegar phenomenon in recent years.  Alas, I had no white vinegar in my pantry.

Incidentally, I really don’t like the word “pantry”.  It sounds too much like “panty”.  Ew, gross.

Anyway, another flavor that I love is jalapeno.  Or really anything spicy.  I would sleep with this stuff next to my bed if it wasn’t weird:

So I found this recipe and decided to make a slightly less spicy and healthier version.  (ie, I didn’t have any habaneros and I’m not about to use a deep fryer on a Wednesday evening- too much effort)

I subbed out the habaneros for pickled jalapenos, which I always think have a more piquant flavor that I love.

After I let the potatoes soak for 30 minutes, I lightly patted them dry, re-seasoned and greased them with garlic salt and pepper and some olive oil and threw them in a 425° oven until they were golden brown.  I also flipped them once while they were baking to make sure both sides got some lovin’.

Craving, satisfied.

At least until tomorrow.