Life

Just a good weekend…

My, my, what a busy weekend. I went over to my friend’s house on Saturday with intentions of us preparing a feast of wild game this weekend. Well, we ate lunch at Ruby Tuesdays and ended up being too stuffed to eat dinner. We watched Maleficent and The Equalizer. Before we started The Equalizer, I was feeling a little peckish so I decided to fix us a handful of jalapeno poppers. I used the packet of Ghost Crab spice that I received in this month’s Charleston Epicurean box (mixed with cream cheese), stuffing it into some jalapenos from my garden that I had frozen over the summer. I wrapped them with bacon and then baked them in the oven for about 20 minutes.

Those suckers were SPICY! And absolutely delicious. I must get another packet of that spice to have one hand. It makes the perfect poppers if you like that kick. I might mix it next time with 16 oz. of cream cheese instead of 12 oz. because I know that not everyone is a spice fiend like me.

My friend and I made our way up to Trader Joe’s in Newport News on Sunday (forgetting, until my mom reminded me, that there was not only a Trader Joe’s in Virginia Beach, but a Whole Foods right there as well that would have been much closer). This was a completely impromptu trip and I’m glad that I keep a freezer bad in my trunk. I neglected to take a picture as I got home a little late that night but I purchased a small Chrysanthemum (for mom), a log of blueberry goat cheese, mini peanut butter cups, some dried Smyrna figs, a half gallon of organic whole milk, a package of chocolate lava cake, and I think that’s all I got. My friend got a couple of jars of the Island Soyaki (for marinating duck), a wedge of gorgonzola cheese, a jar of Dijon mustard, a jar of hot and sweet mustard, and I believe that’s all he got. It was his first trip to a Trader Joe’s and I think he enjoyed it.

We also made a stop to Abuelo’s for the first time. We will definitely stop here again. Our server brought us out a trio of salsas with our chips – a salsa verde with a hint of pineapple (our favorite), a regular salsa that tasted like it had a hint of chipotle, a hot salsa. My friend order the Grande Burrito lunch special (and it was GRANDE!) and I ordered the chicken and the cheese enchiladas with the Papas con Chile. My food was absolutely delicious and I fell in love with the papas. The papas were a combination of whipped red potatoes, four cheeses, red and green peppers, sour cream and a touch of garlic and jalapeño.

I spent this morning doing chores – vacuuming the house, vacuuming the car, cleaning my room. I added some garlic cloves to a piece of jar of honey to let infuse for use later on. You can use it for colds, but what I’m planning is to use the garlic in mashed potatoes and the honey in BBQ sauce.

A crummy cell phone picture of the lemon and blueberry pound cake my mom made today. She used blueberry frozen from our plants last year.
A crummy cell phone picture of the lemon and blueberry pound cake my mom made today. She used blueberry frozen from our plants last year.

Mom and I walked around the yard for a bit this afternoon and then she decided that she wanted to teach me how to make a grapevine wreath using the excess that she had trimmed off the vines. I’m in love with my little creation and we both gained a lot of enthusiasm for the craft thanks to Pinterest. We dragged the rest of the vines on the back porch so we can create some more crafts (I am planning on more wreaths and then I’ll work my way up to pumpkins while mom is set on making some of those balls with the lights in them).

A blurry cell phone picture of my wreath in progress.
A blurry cell phone picture of my wreath in progress.

All in all, a good weekend and now I’m working on what I want to order from the next farmer’s market co-op that will be taking place next weekend.

The finished product (another blurry cell phone picture - my regular camera is on the frtiz).
The finished product (another blurry cell phone picture – my regular camera is on the frtiz).

Did you know that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once made a visit to my tiny North Carolina town? He held a rally at the local armory in May of 1966.

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Food

Charleston Epicurean January Reveal

It’s been a few months since I have last received a Charleston Epicurean box, but since I’ve been craving a trip to Charleston recently, I figured that now was a good time to surprise myself with another one. I wish I had enough money to subscribe to both the Homegrown Collective box and the Charleston Epicurean box every month because it’s a close tie as to which one I enjoy more!

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This was an excellent box, though I have to admit, I sort of spoiled the surprise for myself by peaking on the Facebook page. Still – I was tickled when I saw the box waiting for me last night. So was my cat.

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January’s box contained:

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  • Charleston Gold Aromatic Rice – I was excited to receive this as I’ve been wanting to actually grow my own Charleston Gold rice as this is a offspring of the heirloom Carolina Gold rice. This is a short-grain rice and I’m looking for a truly special recipe to use this in. I’m thinking maybe a rice pudding so that I can really enjoy the complexities of the rice.
  • Charleston’s Own Peach Butter – I think my mom was more excited about this item than I was. She was already envisioning slathering this over some butter soaked rolls this weekend.
  • Christophe Artisan Chocolate Bar (Almond) – I’m excited about this. I mean, who wouldn’t be – it’s chocolate? And almonds. Mmm.
  • Mike’s Fried Peanuts in Bar-B-Que flavor – I’ve never tried a fried peanut before so I was curiously about this. My mom and I both tried it. Though she didn’t care for it much, I thought it was an interesting snack. It had good flavor and thought it felt wrong to be eating the peanut shell and all, I think I can learn to live with that. J
  • Ghost Crab Spice from The Spice and the Spoon – This spice is a blend of white cheddar cheese and Jolokia that I might actually put to good use this weekend! The blurb states that it’s good for jalapeno poppers so I think that is exactly what I am going to use it for. You mix it with cream cheese (I think) and a little bit of milk. I have some jalapenos in the freezer from my garden this year that have already been cored and sliced in half so I am ready to go!

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This was an awesome box and I really wish that I could subscribe to this on a monthly basis.

Food

Charleston Epicurean September Reveal

Another day, another highly anticipated monthly subscription box! In case you haven’t read my posts, I went to Charleston back in March and absolutely fell in love with the city. It has stayed with me in my memories (even prompting me to attempt to recreate the delicious BBQ Shrimp & Grits from 82 Queen just this weekend). Anyway, the Charleston Epicurean box is a monthly box that highlights the best of what the city and its artisans has to offer.

This is my cat's favorite part of me receiving mail - playing in the box.
This is my cat’s favorite part of me receiving mail – playing in the box.

So what was in my box??

  • Shem Creek Shrimp Spice from The Spice and the Spoon – This is a blend of sweet tomato, red/green bell pepper, garlic, paprika, and Cajun seasoning that might be making it way on to some of the shrimp in my freezer for another take on shrimp and grits.
  • Charleston Style Iced Tea (1 Gallon Bag) in Peach Apricot Flavor from Olive Pluff & Company – I can’t wait to try this. I’ve never seen a gallon tea bag before.
  • Charleston Coaster from Carolina Coaster Company – I adore this coaster and not just for the pretty Charleston picture. These coasters are durable and perfect to have around the house.
  • Charleston Cheddar Popcorn from Holy City Popcorn – This is going to be the perfect snack for me to have this upcoming Friday at work.
  • Molly & Me Praline Pecans – This is what I’m most looking forward to trying and I love that it was packaged in a nice little jar.
  • Palmetto Rose – I already have one palmetto rose in my room from my trip but I’m excited to have another one to add to my collection.

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At $35 a month (free shipping), this is a box that I may seriously continue for a few months. It helps to slightly satisfy that longing to return to the city. One day soon I hope!

Slimer (from Ghostbusters) also arrived on my doorstep the same day in the form of a POP! Toy. I absolutely adore his little face.
Slimer (from Ghostbusters) also arrived on my doorstep the same day in the form of a POP! Toy. I absolutely adore his little face.