Cajun style

IMG_20140713_200537I had a boyfriend many moons ago who was a pretty good cook. In fact, it was his lead that I first followed to cook without a recipe. But like the best of us, he occasionally had his kitchen foibles. Anytime he burned something, he’d holler, “It’s cajun style, honey!”

Well, tonight’s honey mustard chicken on the bbq was a little on the cajun side. But somehow I managed to get the sweet potato spears grilled to perfection. I tossed them with a lug of olive oil, a splash of lime juice, a tiny bit of freshly ground sea salt and pepper. On the grill for about five minutes, turning halfway through, then tossed back in the oily bowl to keep them from drying out.

Served ’em up with a simple dip of mayo, curry and lime juice, along with the charred but surprisingly tender, juicy chicken and a simple salad.




Here’s to summer

Three years ago today was an identical June day. Sunny, warm, with a light breeze. And I got married.

But I can’t say that today is our third anniversary.

It was really over within six months. Officially over before the second anniversary. And close to being legally over now.

burgerSurprisingly, I’m not blue. I had a normal, productive work day. Made progress with school work. Rhumba-ed, cha cha-ed and samba-ed the evening away in dance class. Grilled up a thick, juicy burger to enjoy on the balcony with an episode of House on Netflix. (Laptops and earphones are wonderful things.)

I will always note the date. It’s just like noting the date my brother died. That odd feeling when I see it as the date for an event, or as the expiry date on a carton of milk.

But I must be getting somewhere if the day has come and gone mostly like any other.

Here’s to summer and burgers and turning corners, one step at a time.



Stay Cool

OK, here we go, pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps with a new post…

We don’t get a lot of melting hot weather in Nova Scotia, but we usually get a stretch of it at some point every summer. This week, we’ve had temperatures hovering around 40 with humidex. I almost perspire just thinking about it.

I don’t like moving much in this heat. But I love being outdoors with a breeze that doesn’t give me goosebumps, especially at night. I love gently swaying in a hammock with a cool drink, a crunchy snack, and a good book or magazine.

Fruity, fresh mock sangria.
Fruity, fresh mock sangria.

My sole exertion today was a stroll to the grocery store for some key ingredients to enjoy a lazy hot day. Lemons, limes, berries, a couple of kinds of juice, some Sprite, and some salty crunchy treats.

I got home, wiped my brow, and prepared a lovely mock sangria to chill in the fridge while I took a cool shower. Then I set up the hammock, tossed some nacho chips in a bowl, poured my fruity beverage into a practical plastic glass with a lid and straw, and got comfy in my swaying chaise with a few cooking magazines.

There’s precious few hours of hammock time every summer. So I savoured every fruity sip of my punch and the chirping of the birds, giving the hammock a nudge every once in a while to get it rocking again.

In the back of my mind, I was thinking of the avocado tzatziki I’d whipped up earlier from a recipe on Pinterest. What a brilliant idea to make tzatziki with rich, delicious avocado instead of cucumber!

Taste of summer
Taste of summer.

So when my tummy got rumbly, I did a little chopping and assembling to make the Greek chicken that came along with the tzatziki recipe, as well as mixed grilled vegetables, grilled corn on the cob and some simple couscous.

Grilled goodness.
Grilled goodness.

I chose the couscous because it only involves using the stove for a very short time. The rest of the meal was cooked on the barbeque, keeping as much heat outside the house as possible.

I made loads of this food…plenty for a few people. But since I was dining on my own, as I will be for the foreseeable future, I tossed all the extra chicken, vegetables and couscous together for office lunches and evening meals through the week. Perhaps a bit repetitive, but who can complain about a whole lot of delicious? Not me!

And now, to watch a few episodes of the West Wing with some more of that mock sangria in the cool relief of the basement.