pyjamasandtea

May 4, 2011

On Tofu and Chocolate

Filed under: Dessert,Main Dishes,Recipes,Uncategorized — pyjamasandtea @ 3:08 pm
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Not necessarily combined, mind you.

Sorry for my delinquent posting of late. I’ll get on that, promise!  In the meantime though, I offer what I made for dinner last night.  YUM.

Cynthia’s Tofu


This is called “Cynthia’s Tofu” because it is a recipe carefully preserved during his separation by my love and mastered by his ex-sis-in-law.  It is one of those very imprecise recipes with words like “lots of” or “bunches of” or cook for “a while”.  I tried to pay attention last night and offer you a somewhat more precise version that keeps all the charm of its original.  This is delicious!

2 cakes of extra firm tofu

one bunch of cilantro

5 tbsp of oyster sauce

vegetable oil (lots!) for frying

Place tofu in a saucepan and cover with water.  Bring to a boil and then reduce to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Gently remove from water and refrigerate til chilled (at least two hours or overnight). Slice into 1-1 1/2 inch cubes and brown in lots of hot vegetable oil. This takes about 10-15 minutes and requires lots of careful flipping of the pieces so they brown on all sides. Be vigilant. It is worth the effort! Pour off excess oil, then add oyster sauce and LOTS of cilantro (it may seem excessive to include a whole bunch, but it is worth it). I served this with an Asian-inspired salad and simple coconut rice. It served 2 healthy portions for dinner with one leftover lunch. Excellent!

And then, after already feeling stuffed, I brewed up some mint tea and ate a large “Knock You Naked Brownie” from Ree Drummond at “The Pioneer Woman” website.

TO DIE FOR. Two notes about this recipe. First, I could not find a German Chocolate cake mix– two different grocery stores had no record of such a mix. I substituted a Swiss Chocolate cake mix on the theory that the Swiss and the Germans are geographically close. It worked just fine. Second, I could not get my top brownie layer to cooperate in being moved from counter to cake, so I simply laid out the pieces on top in a puzzle-like fashion. There were some gaps, but they all filled in perfectly during the baking process. Next time I wouldn’t be so fussy about the top layer.

You must go make these!  My love pronounced them possibly the best dessert he has ever had.

April 19, 2011

I Feel Good About My Feet

Filed under: Books,Daily life,Uncategorized — pyjamasandtea @ 11:29 am
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I am attending a really special event tonight… the launch of “I Feel Great About My Hands” edited by my bff Shari Graydon.  Her book is a collection of essays about the unexpected joys of aging and features contributions from amazing women, many of whom I know and love. Shari’s criteria for her invited writers is that they had to be over 50.  While I am still a ways away from that milestone, it got me thinking about aging and aging bodies.  Shari’s title is a riff off of Nora Ephron’s series of columns, published in a book called “I Feel Bad About My Neck”.  Shari has GREAT hands (they are featured on the cover of the anthology!).  I had to think long and hard about what part of my own anatomy I could say I feel “great” about, and settled on something I feel good about:  my feet.

I don’t actually feel “great” about my feet.  They are, however, unoffensive, as feet go.  Small, no bunions or yellowed toenails, a little tuft on hair on the big toes that sometimes throws me off and a baby toenail that is almost too small to paint, but on the whole just fine.  I really don’t know that there is a part of my anatomy that I feel GREAT about.

Despite the fact that I see myself in the mirror every single day, I have no strong sense of what I look like to other people.  I am stereotypically horrified at most pictures of myself and often wonder if THAT is what people see:  this blotchy-faced, big-nosed, slightly overweight, limp-haired woman.  Is that “me”?  I am a dismal failure at make-up (or at least at feeling like I am making a positive difference in applying it!) and I usually put my hair in hot rollers, despite the fact that again, I have no sense that my hair actually looks better curled.  I get dressed up without really knowing what looks good on me.  It is all a bit mysterious, and exacerbated by the aging process.  I still think I look 15 and I’m surprised when I don’t get carded in the liquor store!  It isn’t that I thought I was more beautiful at 15– in fact, looking back, I was too heavily coiffed and made up in my teens, it is just that I haven’t internalized the effects the aging process has had on me.  (Well, other than the ravages of sleep deprivation that my children visit on my face on a regular basis.  I KNOW that makes me look older!  But then, my children seem determined to age me before my time.)

So I feel good about my feet and a bit bemused by most of the rest.  I hate my hair, my upper arms, my cellulite, my nose, my ever-widening derriere, my floppy belly.  Fortunately, pyjamas cover all manner of bodily sins.

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