Tag Archives: coffee

Gentle Readers, It’s Time for a Change

Gentle Readers, after over 365 days of daily blogging, the time has come to change gears a bit. On occasion, The Practical Cook must sleep. Fueled by ice cream, bacon, and chocolate, I can accomplish much, but eventually one must make time to braise and stew. For the month of March, I will be moving to blogs on Sunday (Weekly Menus, probably a bit expanded), Wednesday, and Friday.

Coffee Unadulterated: Better Bitter Than Sweet

Coffee Unadulterated: Better Bitter Than Sweet

My goal is to spend more time in the kitchen, more time doing field research, and more time engaging with all of you. That said, as always, I want to hear your thoughts. This is a trial run, and I’ll let you know the results at the end of March. We’ll be running the Bacon Brackets just the same, and there will be recipes, reviews, and more. In fact, let’s take a poll, shall we?

Thanks to one and all for your support and for your readership. Please feel free to tell me what you think in the Comments section below. Good, bad, or indifferent, I’d like to hear from you.

Fuel for The Practical Cook (Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups from Trader Joe's)

Fuel for The Practical Cook (Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups from Trader Joe's)

Send your feedback and thoughts to practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading The Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today!)

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Tomorrow, back to our regularly scheduled, Weekly Menus!

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Top 3 Reasons to Eat Breakfast

Gentle Readers, as long-time readers and close friends know, The Practical Cook is at war with her cholesterol (see For the Love of Grapefruit for the whole scoop). I am happy to say I am still winning this battle of the ages. It is possible to eat Fried and love it, and still maintain one’s health. There is a secret, do lean in and I’ll tell you. I eat.

Recovery Cereal

Recovery Cereal

Yes, I am not a meal skipper. As my London traveling companion will tell you, there is a reason for this. I get a smidge touchy when I don’t eat. In my experience, skipping meals always backfires. I mention the cholesterol because I had to fast for the test. The second I knew I couldn’t eat, I was starving.

Neal's Deli Biscuit with Egg, Swiss Cheese, and Garlicky Spinach: It's a Health Food Really

Neal's Deli Biscuit with Egg, Swiss Cheese, and Garlicky Spinach: It's a Health Food Really

At the same time, Crescent Dragonwagon (author of The Cornbread Gospels and the upcoming Bean by Bean <awesome!> cookbooks) shared this article on Facebook about the benefits of dessert with breakfast. Exactly. Just eat.

Oatmeal with Fig Preserves

Oatmeal with Fig Preserves

So this one goes out to the myriad readers who I know are drinking coffee instead of eating, grabbing a Little Debbie snack cake, or calling a lone banana breakfast. You know who you are, I shall not name names.

For the Love of Lattes

For the Love of Lattes: But It's Not a Breakfast Substitute!

Breakfast rocks, and here’s 3 reasons why.

1. Energy. It is the most important meal of the day. Did you learn nothing from the PSA’s of the 1980’s?? But really, coming from a farming family, breakfast is meant to fuel you through the majority of your heavy lifting. You’re getting kids to school, thinking, working out, why starve yourself?

Prepping Waffles for the Freezer

Prepping Waffles for the Freezer

2. Bacon. Need I say more? Morning is a good time to have some. I couldn’t resist sharing this picture I just found of a colleague hedging his bets, balancing his oatmeal and whole wheat toast with a side of Fried. Good work Virtually Cooking.

A working breakfast, with all the major food groups and some technology present!

A working breakfast, with all the major food groups and some technology present!

3. Cereal. Again, why miss a cereal eating opportunity? I’m a well-documented fan, but you can eat it dry or with milk. I sometimes have to take the bowl with me to the car to get The Eldest Practical Cook Junior to school on time, but don’t try to pry it from my hands. You’ll pull back a nub. Point is, it’s fast, easy, and varied. Find one you like and keep it on hand.

The Practical Cook's Cereal Warehouse

The Practical Cook's Cereal Warehouse

You have time to eat something of substance in the morning. Let yourself be hungry then, and answer the call. Cereal, yogurt, oatmeal, eggs, fruit, leftover pizza, even pie on occasion (assuming you balance it with protein), whatever floats your boat. Just don’t skip. I will be watching. (And if you ever hear I’ve missed breakfast, do not come near me without a bagel, muffin, or omelet in hand as a peace offering.)

40 All-Purpose Blueberry Muffins

40 All-Purpose Blueberry Muffins

Confession time. Do you eat breakfast? If so, what’s your favorite thing to eat in the morning? If not, why? Post a comment and share your thoughts! There is no judgment, but I won’t promise not to gently persuade. 🙂

Send cereal, bacon, and doughnuts to practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading The Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today!)

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Tomorrow, Kitchen Tool Talk!

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Hazelnuts, Why Do You Mock Me?

Gentle Readers, what is up with hazelnuts these days? They seem to be creeping out of the woodwork into the every day lives of innocent people. The trip to Las Vegas was full of them, like little rancid land mines. Yes, for those who aren’t clear on the Practical Cook’s stance, I hate hazelnuts. I hate them whole, in paste form, crushed, and especially as Nutella.

Thanks to my colleagues who have offered/threatened to fill my cube with them. Do so at your peril. Payback is never pretty. (Looking at you Virtually Cooking and Buttercup.) What follows are three close encounters of the hazelnut kind, all within 72 hours. The dark side of One Ingredient, Three Ways.

1. Hazelnut syrup, coffee station.

Who would do that to coffee?

Who would do that to coffee?

2. Madeleines with Nutella on the side. I had mine plain, needless to say.

Fresh Warm Madeleine, Sans Nutella

Fresh Warm Madeleine, Sans Nutella

3. Hazelnut flag cake. I will not pledge allegiance to this.

Hazelnut Flag Cake

Hazelnut Flag Cake

Do you find yourself stalked by a hated ingredient? Post a comment or Tweet.

Send your hazelnut hatred mail to practical cook at gmail dot com. Connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Thanks in advance for spreading the Practical Cook Blog word. Press “like” on Facebook today!)

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Coming up tomorrow, Summer Thanksgiving, Vegetarian Style.

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Kitchen Tool Talk: Three (More) of My Favorite Things (Coffee Edition)

Searching the kitchen after a long day’s work, looking for inspiration for the post on the trinity of kitchen tools, the Practical Cook saw her beloved French Press. Gentle readers, the Practical Cook is very fond of coffee. From the road-brew-fueled trip that carried her through a 21-hour drive to Texas to the lattes in a bowl at her favorite local spot, love may actually not be a strong enough term to describe the relationship.

So here are 3 of my favorite kitchen things:

Coffee Tools: Travel Mug, Brew-Through, French Press

Coffee Tools: Travel Mug, Brew-Through, French Press

1. Travel Mug: This is a relatively new acquisition. I am particular about my mugs. I wanted a stainless steel one, but not so industrial. I think this one has a rather feminine air about it, don’t you? (Hey, don’t judge, if you need a manly mug, go for it.) My brew (always black in there, no lattes will touch it) stays hot all day when meetings distract me.

2. Brew-Through: Thanks to Illegally Cooking for this one. Since I’m the only coffee drinker in the house, I don’t need or want vast quantities. I enjoy the speed of the process, and the simplicity.

3. French Press: Perfect for sharing with a friend, or doubling down, the French Press is there for me when I have more time to relax and enjoy the coffee-making process.

For the record, in my old age, and with my, ahem, high-energy temperament, I’m strictly decaf. Try not to gasp in horror. Years of experimentation have taught me that adding caffeine to a perky personality results in jitters and unruly behavior.

How do you make your coffee, and how do you like it served? Join me on Twitter for #coffeetalk.

Send photos, blog ideas, and accolades to practical cook at gmail dot com. Or post a comment here, or connect on Facebook: The Practical Cook Blog. (Like, like, like! Press “like” on Facebook today!)

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Coming up next Cereal, Part 2, This Time It’s Sugary.

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