Sunday, December 30, 2012

Bits and Bites - More Weekend

There is one thing that is a given if one visits the Range (either crash pad one or otherwise.) You will NOT go hungry.

After a good night's sleep, our hostess and the tired travelers were to bed early Friday night, they being tired from the trip, me tired from some long duty days and early mornings this week.

Saturday morning, I awoke before anyone, and baked some pastries, set out to rise overnight, assembled a couple of days prior then put in the freezer.

Homemade  croissants, these  from my Croissants Pain au Chocolat  recipe with a tiny dab of  sweet and fragrant almond paste replacing the chocolate in the center.

Then it was off to half priced books!
I love the antique typewriters on the top of the shelves, but laughed at the Sci Fi Fantasy aisle also containing Westerns AND paranormal romance (The Quick and the Undead? Bella Star?) I was amazed at the growth of the paranormal romance books (Dad hates your boyfriend, bring home a horny werewolf, that will show him).

I think the audience is either housebound soccer moms or hormonally overactive young teens (In my day, we just went and rode the horse around for a while). Still it it made me smile to see the mix of what was in the aisle.
New Reading material for everyone, with a couple books for friends!

Then it was time for lunch, meeting a couple of friends, including Scout26 and offspring for lunch at one of the area Irish pubs. Miss D., on the left had the corned beef and cabbage, the rest of us trying less traditional fare, including a barbecue flat bread pizza the kitchen made up for young R. even if it wasn't on the weekend menu!
The young man had a brand new RC airplane, Miss D. gave him some lessons in aerodynamics while I scouted out a good operations site that was flat, open to the public and free from hard things to fly into. Unfortunately the local winds picked up to almost 30 miles per hour, double that of the max allowance for the craft, so the aircraft had to remain hangared. Barkley offered him self as backup to the boy, who got to play with big black dog for a while, while the grown ups caught up.

Then it was "girls afternoon out", while Miss D. and I took the bat truck and headed into the city.  We'd invited Tam and Roberta X. to join, but they were out of town with other plans, so we did the solo trek to some of our favorite haunts.
Goose the Market.  A piece or two of the jowl bacon will go well in green beans tonight simmered in a bit of stock with shallots and a pinch of red pepper, Along with that, a simple Goose the Market locally raised pork tenderloin, encrusted with French herbs and cooked in a few Tablespoons of garlic infused stock in an enamel pot until spoon tender. A simple supper after a day of fine food.

But for now? Bacon and chocolate gelato? Oh my. . but alas, we are still full from lunch. Next time.

So many good flavors, carrot cake with cream cheese, frosting, Turkish coffee and others. It was tempting, but we still have mead tasting and dinner together later.

With a little bit of everything including the kitchen sink, in our Goose the Market bag,  we were on our way to the  New Day meadery. 

D. and Peter have brought me their wines before, but I'd not visited.  How fun!  I'd never tried mead until Partner in Grime  made some Christmas of 2011.  I was hooked,  but when we had run out of the small bath, I found that  the liquor store pre bottled mead tasted like alpaca spit mixed with lemon scented dish washing detergent. The first taste I had of New Day's product was "THIS is what it's supposed to taste like, it's as good as what I first tried!"

We were very warmly greeted and made to feel at home.  There's a beautiful sitting area and gourmet foods and desserts to try if one would like a little food with their sampling.  They also have honey products from Wildflower Ridge Honey, LLC and other places (honey sticks in watermelon flavor. . oh yes).  We really try and do our business with local artisans and craftsmen. I will gladly drive a ways further, and pay a little bit more to keep our local small businesses successful/  Big Box Mart and the Chain Restaurants rarely, if ever, see my hard earned money.

So many different meads and ciders from which to choose.

I was driving so I took just the tiniest of sips of the ones I'd not tried. The Cranberry one definitely was coming home with me to share with our supper, and another bottle of blackcurrant carbonated mead for another special occasion.
We got to pick six different meads and ciders to sample.  Then it was home, to craft the light supper, while we caught up on stories, (the perils of chicken ingestion in a  low flying fighter engine and how NOT to get the handle of "Coop", how Barkley and Oleg's Cat combining forces in "the Royal Order of Dander" would be dangerous, and the merits of a REALLY good blue cheese with our crackers and wine).

After more mead and  perplexing Barkley with the Jedi Pocket Knives, (a gift from Santa in my stocking), we were off to sleep.  For some strange reason, everyone slept in this morning, the house chill as it got down to the low teens during the night.  Brrr, kick that heat on! But before Miss D. and Peter hit the road, there was breakfast at a great little Indiana restaurant, a ways from me, but worth the drive.  Emmy's pancake house in Avon, Indiana.

It's in what was once a totally vacant strip mall, where a large Oriental buffet used to be. Now there's a small college auxiliary campus and a VERY busy restaurant in the old giant buffet area.   The flaming dragon/neon fixture decor can only be described as Terminal 2 at Kai Tek airport in Hong Kong with some bottles of maple syrup and retro oatmeal tins lying about,  but it's  SO worth a try.  Much of the menu is standard breakfast fare, but they have some menu items that top anyone's in  the area, the eggs Benedict and pancakes being the best in town and the crepes we saw coming out, looking wonderful!

Taken with D's cell phone camera   Peter's Florentine eggs Benedict with spinach.

And my breakfast scramble with hash browns and pancakes. (scrambled eggs with ham, pineapple and Cheddar, throw on a dash of Shirachi, and it's even better)

We made a drive around the local area, commenting on how winter IS the best time to buy a house as you can really see by the obvious bare patches in rooftop snow, who has decent insulation. The worst homes for roof insulation, apparently the $189,000 and up, pricey for Indiana, homes in a new subdivision, the older brick and bungalows snug as a bug with their roof snow undisturbed, even around chimneys.

Barkley food was picked up at the pet supply place and then we had our nice long drive home, while Miss D. entertained us with stories of bush flying in Alaska.

The weekend was drawing to a close too soon.  The blog meet is this afternoon, but I have an invite to a colleagues for a housewarming, and my guests need to hit the road, for work very early tomorrow.  It was a great time.  There may be a treadmill and a salad in my future  tomorrow but it was worth it.   

Thanks for sharing
Brigid and Barkley


  1. Glad you're enjoying the weekend. HAPPY NEW YEAR and may it be the best EVAR! May it bring you love, joy, and peace like never before!

  2. Glad y'all had a good time, and time with good friends is always a win!

  3. Thanks for the very "comfortable" report of your weekend. I feel like I was there but missed the food somehow.

  4. Great weekend, by the looks of it. But just thinking about bacon chocolate ice cream has me a little woozy...That can't be good, can it?

  5. Friends, fun, and food - what can beat that?

    Times like that provide sustenance through the rest of the week.

  6. Lovely! Makes me smile reading this and knowing how much enjoyment you are having! Here's to a very Happy New Year ahead!

  7. Spent the New Year with my brother and his wife. Got there New Year's Eve Eve, watched football and drank some 10-year old Bushmills. The next day the ladies went shopping while brother and I went to a local liquor store (Vine and Table in Carmel, Ind.). I'm an Irish Whiskey drinker. Turns out they have about 20 different varieties and are willing to let you taste what you're considering buying. Four tastes later I was out the door with a bottle of Jamesons Gold Reserve. For those of you who prefer whiskey from the other side of the Irish Sea they have approximately 400 Scotches - and an extensive number of samples available. You have to be 21 to walk into the store, so don't bring the kids.


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