As is becoming our tradition, Tony made me breakfast both Saturday and Sunday while I did some computer work. Open-mouthed smile  Saturday was spicy eggs and hash browns.

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Sunday was apple french toast and hash browns.  I shared some of these hash browns with dog. Open-mouthed smile   Tony put some apples in the smoothie maker with the milk and egg batter – these were really good.  And I love his plating skillz with the squirt of whip cream. Open-mouthed smile

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When I was meal planning for my SIL’s lunches, I remembered that Michelle had a bunch of brussel sprout recipes on her blog.   She and I emailed back and forth and she told me that Mariano’s had brussel sprouts for .88 cents a pound!  Tony and I decided to make a trip to that store to grocery shop this week and have lunch out.

I don’t like brussel sprouts.  I try them eat time I make them, but just don’t like them.  I decided to roast them up.  I poured 1 teaspoon of olive oil on my baking sheet and spread that around.  Then cut the sprouts in half, cut side down, and sprinkled with salt and pepper.  I baked them at 400 for 15 minutes.  Then put some crumbled goat cheese over the top – I hope she likes them!

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Since we ate such a late lunch on Saturday, we didn’t think we’d be that hungry for dinner, but at about 8:00 I felt like making pizza.  Last week I made Artisan Bread, and had half of the leftover dough in the fridge.  I am re-writing the recipe here so I can link to it again, because I’ve changed the cooking method from the first batches I made a few years ago.

Five Minute Artisan Bread

I make this into two loaves, or four 12 inch pizzas


  • 6.5 cups bread flour
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Mix the flour, yeast and salt together and pour in room temperature water.  I actually use my fingers to make sure all the flour is incorporated – I’ve used a wooden spoon before but have had lumps of flour after the 2 hour rise.

Put in a big plastic container with a lid.  Let sit for 2 hours to rise.  Heat oven to 450 with a Dutch oven with a lid while the oven comes to temperature.  Shape your dough and put on a piece of parchment paper.  Transfer dough to pot, put the lid on and bake for 30 minutes.  Remove the lid and finish for 15 more minutes.  Let cool before slicing.

So here’s how my dough looked after a week in the fridge:

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I put it on my counter that had flour on it.  It’s a shaggy dough.

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I pinched off a grapefruit size to make Tony and I a small pizza for dinner.  I know he thought he could escape a weekend without having pizza – no such luck!

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I took a picture of the leftovers yesterday morning so you could see how great the crust came out – crispy but with a hint of chewiness.  While I loves me a deep dish, this pizza is hands down my favorite one – supa thin crust.  YOLO!

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For the remainder of the dough, I decided to see if I could make bagels out of the Artisan bread.  I figured, it works for bread and pizza, why not bagels?

I divided the remainder of the dough into 3 ounce pieces, then put my thumb in the middle and made the hole in the middle.  I boiled a pot of water with about 1 tablespoon of salt.  Don’t fill it up too high to the top, because I add 1 tablespoon of baking soda to the pot just before I blanch the bagels – this causes a surge of bubbles and you don’t want water all over your stove.  (No idea how I know this will happen!)

I boiled each bagel for about a minute each side, then used egg whites brushed over the top so my sesame seeds would stick.  Heat your oven to 425.

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I baked mine for 25 minutes – but depending on how your oven works, you might want to check them at 20 minutes just in case.

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The verdict?  Um, they don’t taste like bagels at all – they taste like mini artisan bread!  I love them though – and I think since they are mini size, about 150 calories each.  I hope to make breakfast sammies for breakfast this week.

I also made a loaf of bread for my SIL – apparently my nephew LOVES my bread and asks each week – “Is Biz bringing bread with your food again?!”

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If you are afraid of working with yeast, this is a forgiving recipe – and like I said, it keeps for 2 weeks in the fridge, and Tony and I actually prefer the pizza dough to be about a week old – it has more of a sour doughy flavor?  And for the record, Tony liked the pizza. Open-mouthed smile

We now have more squirrels – I put popcorn out there and this black squirrel was hogging it all.  As soon as the other squirrels came around he would bite them and shove them off the table!
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This one is friendly though – and will literally sit right outside the window next to Tony’s chair – freaks him out because Tony will just be watching t.v. and this one will just pop his head up!

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Last fall we helped our neighbors pick up the leaves on their property – we have a riding mower with a bagger, so it makes picking up the leaves much less of a chore – it still takes time because you have to empty the bagger pretty often, but it cut down the time by 75%.  As a thank you they said that after football season, they would take us out to lunch.

Since today there was only the Pro Bowl going on, even though we had icy rain, we trecked up to Highland Park for some deli grub at Max’s Deli!  I put that on Facebook that I was about to get my Reuben face on, when Mara commented and told me that she used to go to this place with her grandma when she was little!


Our neighbor has been going to this place for 20 years.  Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a Reuben whore.  I love them.  And I am very critical about them.  It can’t be corned beef lunch meat, they meat has to be tender and melt in your mouth.  Definitely has to be on marble rye, with lots of kraut and melty Swiss cheese.  I actually prefer the thousand island on the side, and you don’t even have to ask because that’s how they serve it.


Just one word about the sandwich people:  amazeballs!  Tony had a pastrami on rye, and made equally nummy noises while eating it.  My intent was to just eat half, but I said YOLO – and ate the whole thing!  (um, with a potato pancake on the side – I had to, I was at a Jewish deli!).

So I’ll be hitting the gym hard before my WI on Wednesday, which reminded me that I never weighed in last week!

Question of the Day:  Reuben sandwiches – Yea or Nay?

We have some weird weather this week – yesterday we had icy rain and lightening, right now at 7:00 a.m. its already 46 degrees, tomorrow we’ll be near 60, and then by the end of the week our highs will only be in the teens – so crazy!

Make it a great day!