Triple Valentine Pressure

Hey It’s Jet Here.

(My BFF, Savannah, wrote this reminder, and ahem… I hope she does not mind me borrowing it!) It’s THURSDAY and that means another VBP Blog Hop starts all over again!!

And you know the drill now, right?…just grab the badge and code…put it on your VBP post sometime between today and next Wednesday…and be sure to come back and visit the blue froggy symbol at the bottom of my page.  Give him/her a click and enter your VBP post into the linky tool…PAWSOME!!

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valentine bow tie

Since joining Casa Jet in 2008, the male/female ratio Paw-Jet was even; three guys: me, Puffy and Fluffy and three ladies: Mom, Rachel and Koko/JJ.  Sadly this year, I’m the lone male who must concoct Valentines wishes for all three ladies of the house.

jet's bellyI’ll begin with Mom.  Let’s see, I’ve already provided my belly at 4:55 a.m. for an opener.  Since she works from home today, (although she mentioned she has a bunch of outside appointments from morning until mid afternoon), I will have extra opportunities for cuddles and snuggles, which she adores.  Oh, oh… she removed a pack of chicken and a pack of lamb chops from the freezer last night.  I bet she’s cooking tonight!  If my hunch pans out (get it?  Pans out!!!), as her faithful Kitchen K9, we’ll have a fun time in the kitchen, too.  I won’t give away all my ideas, because you need to leave room for flexibility, living in the moment, you know… the genius that is K9!  (For those of you who know how much Mom LOVES basketball (UMiami is #3 right now, oh my gosh, first time EVER, and the HEAT… well Lebron has crossed over to hoops nirvana Paw-Jet right now… this weekend is All-Star break, so, our tivo will no doubt get a workout!  I love sharing hoops viewing with Mom; another great idea!)

nba all star 2013

Rachel, hmmm… she’s at her dad’s today… I’ll have to save up ideas for her this weekend.  I’ll visit her during TV time, leave her food alone, try not to bark during her long Sleeping Beauty teenage sleep sessions, and give her a few famous Jetty kisses.

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Little Miss Isn’t Every Day Valentines Day, well; she’s easy peasy, a slam dunk, a no brainer!!! On today’s schedule – extra wrestling, paw cleaning (I gingerly and gently give Little Miss Spa Day a mani quite often), signaling Mom to give us one of Little Miss Chew Girl’s favorite dental treats after our evening constitutional.

golden valentines

What Mom?  You would like to write?  Ok.

valentine bow tie 2Jetty, thank you in advance for your Valentines gifts, you show us every day how much you love us.  Look away for a few lines, I want to share what I shall give to you today.  First of all my gratitude and love for joining my life; you bring joy, laughter, affection, mindfulness Paw-Jet, manly man swagger, a debonair style, care taking, and love each and every day.  On the tangible Paw-Jet side, how about a hard boiled egg, a kale stem, maybe some chicken/lamb tidbits, a hoof after our evening walk and a big brush/massage before bed!

valentine bow tie 3I’ve always found the fact that I give you your Heartworm meds on the 14th of the month, which in February coordinates with Valentines Day kind of funny… not the ha ha funny, the hmm, that’s interesting kind of funny. 

Love you my boy and this year, it feels sweeter.  Mom.

Another great Valentines Day.

We joined the Thankful Thursday Blog Hop hosted by Pepi Smart Dog (formerly by Cokie the Cat!)

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Tasty Tuesday – We Love Kale Too!

Hey It’s Jet Here.

One of the silver linings from Mom’s new food playbook is the fact that the woman has gone cooking crazy!  She’s scoured Paw-Jet  her data base to see what draws her attention based on ingredients that will hopefully play nice in her intestines.  Little Miss QC (Quality Control) and I relish this turn of events.  JJ and I have stashed some photos from Mom’s recent cooking sessions.

Shitake Kale Soup 2-9-13 009Remember our collard greens, post?  Well, when Mom waved a bunch of delicate red kale (should carry the name purple really) over the colander to drain the rinse water, Little Miss Hopeful and I shimmied Paw-Jet our tushies toward the sink.  Mom quarter-turned to the cutting board and began removing the leaves, tearing them into bite sized pieces.  And then…

Bliss… she broke the first stem in half and …

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Little Miss Double the Recipe and I showed our gratitude for Mom’s choice to make twice the Shitake and Kale Soup with Sweet Potato by keeping up with the kale stems.  Here’s the recipe:

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Kale Shiitake Sweet Potato Soup 

  • 4 cups water or low-sodium vegetable stock (Mom used 1 box of low sodium veggie stock and 1 box of chicken low sodium because she thought she had 2 veggies and did not.  She would stick to the veggie stock next time and possibly use mushroom stock!)
  • Shitake Kale Soup 2-9-13 0021 cup fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, caps thinly sliced
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled, chopped into 1/4 inch cubes (Mom thinks that she might use a regular potato or malanga next time, the sweet potato left the soup too sweet.)
  • 1/2 bunch fresh kale, washed and stems removed
  • 1 teaspoon Mellow white miso, per cup (Mom bought Mellow Yellow by mistake, no biggie!)
  • 1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds (Mom left this out for tummy reasons, she thinks the seeds would be delicious.)

Directions:

  • Shitake Kale Soup 2-9-13 013In a saucepan combine the water/broth, shitake mushrooms and sweet potato and bring to a boil. (At Casa Jetty, this takes forever, so, our times were longer…)
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, chop the kale into bite size pieces and add to the soup.
  • Cook until tender, another 8 minutes.
  • Dissolve a teaspoon of light miso in a bowl with a small amount of broth.
  • Ladle in the soup and sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds.

Another great back to Tasty Tuesday day.

Thanks to Sugar and Kol for initiating Tasty Tuesdays, today is our forty-first participating post!

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Tasty Tuesday: Mom and JJ Finished the Book

Hey It’s Jet Here.

Remember Little Miss Book Club’s recent literary/culinary mischief?

Well, they finally finished the book on Sunday night… or was it Monday in the very early morning after a manly man might have woken Mom up at 4 ish… can’t recall…

SONY DSCAnyway, the book offers a full roster of French recipes author, Kathleen Flinn, made during her experience at Le Cordon Bleu.  The ladies fetched the following recipe from Miss Kathleen’s website because it features many of my favorite ingredients.

Salade Niçoise

6Thyme-lemon vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Coarse salt, ground black pepper

3Potato Salad

  • 1 lb. Yukon gold or new potatoes, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • 2 tablespoons chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot

2 tomatoesSalad components

  • 1 cup, about 6 ounces, cooked green beans
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 4 ounces butter lettuce, arugula or other simple greens
  • 1/2 cup pitted black olives, such as kalamata or Niçoise
  • 3 or 4 hard-boiled eggs, roughly chopped or quartered
  • 12 anchovy fillets
  • 7 oz. can tuna, packed in olive oil 

Prepare the vinaigrette:
In a small bowl or jar, mix the lemon juice, olive oil, thyme, two pinches of salt, coarse ground pepper and shake or whisk together until emulsified. Set aside until needed.

Prepare the potato salad:
Steam or boil the potatoes just until tender. Cut into bite-sized pieces while still warm and toss gently with the white wine and stock. After a few minutes, toss again. Toss half the vinaigrette with the potatoes, chopped parsley and shallots.

Finish the salad:
SONY DSCArrange the cooked green beans, tomatoes, lettuce, hard-boiled eggs and olives in a bowl. Toss with the vinaigrette. Arrange the elements onto four plates, top each with the anchovies and tuna.

French Tip: To keep the green beans crisp and retain bright color, boil briefly just until tender, then plunge into an ice bath.

Another great bon appetit day!

P.S. Thanks for checking on me, my Nana & Poppi, and Mom… everyone’s about the same…

Thanks to Sugar and Kol for initiating Tasty Tuesdays, today is our fortieth participating post!

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Tasty Tuesday: JJ’s Favorite Fruit

Hey It’s Jet Here.

Thanks to Sugar and Kol for initiating Tasty Tuesdays, today is our thirty-seventh participating post!

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DSC03188So far, Mom and I have noticed that JJ’s favorite fruit tidbits include all varieties of apples.  Mom favors Fujis, Pink Ladies and Honey Crisps therefore we do as well.  Mom told us that when she lived in New Jersey, she picked apples off trees!

A few years back, she visited her friend, Flavia, in Pennsylvania and they picked apples, too.  Mom figured out a way to carry about two dozen apples (4 varieties) home for Koko and I to sample.  In honor of Little Miss Gotcha Day’s special week, we give you apples two ways!

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wassailWith Christmas and New Year virtually upon us, Mom thought you might enjoy a classic beverage: wassail.  Mom said I could google… From WiseGeek: Wassail is a traditional drink served during the winter holidays, including Christmas, New Year’s Eve, and Twelfth Night. It is especially popular in northern European countries, where it originates. It consists of a hot, spiced drink, often alcoholic, that most commonly resembles cider in the modern day. Originally, wassail is believed to have been closer to beer.

Zesty Wassail  (this link has 2 other cider recipes!)

  • 2 quarts organic apple cider
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons whole cloves
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 2 oranges, sliced
  • 2 lemons, sliced

Mix all ingredients and bring just to a boil, simmer for 10 minutes, or leave on the lowest heat (or in a slow cooker) to keep warm. Serve with orange or lemon slices, or a cinnamon stick.

Mom told us some families serve turkey for Christmas.  She thought you might enjoy this wintery stuffing recipe: (As Mom’s faithful Kitchen K9s, we would love the sausage, celery, apples, and bread tidbits! Just sayin’…)

Artisan Bread Stuffing with Apples and Sausage

  • Artisan Bread Stuffing with Apples and Sausage1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 pound bulk pork sausage
  • 2 medium tart red apples, cored and chopped
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon parsley flakes
  • 1 teaspoon crushed rosemary 
  • 1 teaspoon thyme 
  • 6 cups cubed day-old artisan bread (1 1/2 to 2 inch cubes)
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock 
  • 1 cup apple cider

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Melt butter in large skillet on medium heat. Add celery and onion; cook and stir 5 minutes or until softened. Add sausage; cook and stir until browned. Stir in apples, cranberries, parsley, rosemary and thyme.

2. Place bread cubes in large bowl. Add vegetable mixture, stock and apple cider; toss gently until well mixed. Spoon into lightly greased 13×9-inch baking dish. Cover with foil.

3. Bake 15 minutes. Remove foil; bake additional 20 minutes or until heated through and top is lightly browned.

Another great apple day.

P.S.  Mom’s writing Servings, her Kitchen Counselor newsletter today (yesterday, too… forgive us for getting super duper behind again…)



Tasty Tuesday: Latkes for K9s or Lassie Latkes*

Hey It’s Jet Here.

tasty tuesdaysHave you enjoyed the Channukah Crawl as much as we have?  Boy oh boy, every post is so informative, interesting and uplifting.  Bet you’re not surprised that we selected to post on Tasty Tuesday!  Have to keep the cred as Mom’s Kitchen K9s you know.  Visit Meandering Moodys for another super Hannukah post.  Head over to Pumpkinpuddy and Spike the Cat tomorrow for more Hannukah celebrations.

We’re sending you to our feline pals Ateret, Livia and Abbi who posted the historical background of Hannukah so beautifully, including the detailed version of why we make latkes or potato pancakes.  (Speed version: the oil was expected to last one night and lasted eight, so, culturally, potato pancakes and donuts are featured.)

4Health concerns have entered the picture over the years, so, now, you can find baked latke recipes in place of fried.  Foodies, chefs and creative cooks have put their spin on ingredients, so, now, you can find: sweet potato latkes, parsnip latkes, spaghetti squash latkes, celery root latkes, beet and carrot latkes, zucchini latkes and Lassie Latkes*! (click here to see the varieties offered at this year’s Latke Festival.)

15Since traditional potato latkes contain onions, Mom knew she would make onion free sweet potato latkes.  Knowing that we enjoy parsnips, too, she thought she would search for a combo recipe.  When she found one that also included a chunky applesauce component, she printed and headed for the grocery store! (fever and all… gotta love Mom!)  Mom will share the recipe below, post photos on her Kitchen Counselor Facebook tomorrow with step-by-step pics and show you the experience from our eyes below.

Sweet Potato and Parsnip Latkes with Chunky 5-Spice Applesauce

For the Chunky 5-spice Applesauce:

  • 6 MacIntosh or Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch chunks (Mom used Fujis! See us testing below!)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder (Mom loved including this!)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

For the Latkes:

  • 1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled
  • 1/2 pound parsnips, peeled
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup flour (Mom used whole wheat pastry flour, because she couldn’t find the spelt!)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil

To finish:

Directions

For the applesauce: In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the apples, lemon juice, apple cider,lemon zest, 5-spice powder and sugar and stir to mix well. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes until apples begin to break down, but are still chunky. Remove from heat and cool.

6For the latkes: On a box grater, grate the sweet potatoes and the parsnips. Combine potatoes and parsnip in a large bowl. Season with salt and toss to combine. Add flour and stir to distribute evenly. Add eggs and stir well. In a large saute pan over medium heat, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil (Mom used about 1/4 inch in her cast iron pan). Form the potato mixture into 3-inch latkes that are about 1/2-inch thick. Add to oil and fry until golden brown on both sides and cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Remove to a paper-towel lined plate and season with salt. Repeat this procedure with all of the potato/parsnip mixture, adding more oil as necessary.

Serve with applesauce, sour cream and green onions.

As my BFF, Savannah, says… click on my pics to bigify!

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Among and within Jewish families, there can be a customs debate… do you eat applesauce or sour cream with your latkes?  Mom’s family was STRICTLY an applesauce family, although after asking her Aunt and my  Nana, they could not tell her why.  Mom’s heritage is predominantly (VBP) Lithuanian, although she’s not sure that contributes any insight.  After some research, Mom came up with two thoughts:

  • The history may be one of whether a family following Kosher Dietary rules wanted a dairy meal (sour cream) or a meat meal (applesauce).
  • Does the family prefer savory (sour cream) or sweet (applesauce)?

We agree and echo all the wishes written by our pals so far and wish to add that Little Miss Festival of Lights, Mom and I hope that all creatures have enough safe food and water to keep them healthy.

Another great sweet potato parsnip with chunky applesauce day!

Tasty Tuesday – Real Dogs Eat Chicken Jerky Tenders

Hey It’s Jet Here.

Thanks to Sugar and Kol for initiating Tasty Tuesdays, today is our thirty-fifth participating post!

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We made the Baby Patches’ Tester Team (from Nip and Bones) and boy does it taste great!  Right around Turkey Day, I received this out of the blue.

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Mom and I opened the package to find:

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6Since we had a few Tasty Tuesday posts “in the hopper”, Mom made her faithful Kitchen K9s wait until yesterday to sample said product.  We wish we had a team t-shirt, since it was Monday Night Football and all, oops, I digressed again.  Ok, back to product review.

Mom liked the product because:

  • realdogs makes the jerky in the USA. Mom worries about the multitude (VBP – vocab building project) of recalls from products containing ingredients from China.
  • The treats have two ingredients – chicken and salt.
  • They do not use fillers or grain.  (Remember, I’m sort of trying to shrink a bit.)

Because I’m a caring brother, Little Miss Ladies First, got the first strip.

24Did you notice she left her super favorite new ball alone?

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Mom apologizes for the fuzzy photo, however, she thought the in-motion chewing photo was worth it!

I used my shark bite technique and devoured that strip so fast Mom could not capture my enjoyment fast enough.

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Obviously, we give Real Dogs All Natural Jerky 8 paws up and Mom’s Happy Face Seal of Approval.

Mom asked to share that going forward, she probably would cut the tenders in smaller pieces to use on Spa Day, after a park visit (maybe during) or as a way to lure (VBP) me out of the house when I’m frightened. Otherwise, she said JJ and I could go through the package in 1.5 minutes.  (Math: 3 strips per Kitchen K9 @ 30 seconds a strip)

Guess what? You can even try to get your photo on the bag!  Yup, you simply visit www.MakeYourDogFamous.com and follow the rules.

Another GREAT Real Dogs Chicken Jerky Tenders Day.

P.S. FYI – We did receive this tasty treat for free to review as a new member of the Baby Patches Testing Team.

P.P.S. –  Special plug – My BFF (best feline friend), Savannah, shares another inspiring story in her series Real Rescue Cats/Dogs are Talking.  Today, Nylablue, shares her story, pop over and… bring a hanky!

Tasty Tuesday: Good Mews for the Holidays

Hey It’s Jet Here.

Before we begin our post, we have sad news to share.  Yesterday, unexpectedly, my remaining feline brother, Puffy, crossed Over the Rainbow Bridge.  We will post a proper tribute on Thursday.  Mom did that text thingie as she left Dr. Schaffer’s to Miss Linda, Savannah’s (my BFF – best feline friend) Mom.  Within half a day, Miss Linda told Miss Ann from Zoolatry, who made a beautiful badge and some of our blogville friends were already sending their thoughtful condolences.  Talk about the Power of the Paw! (POTP)  Thank you so much for wrapping your virtual arms around us.

Puffy and Fluffy gave their paws of approval this year when Mom, wearing her Kitchen Counselor hat, submitted a recipe to Miss Sharon from Good Mews.  Good Mews is a 24 year old no kill, cage free feline shelter in Atlanta.  The cookbook contains 300 recipes from volunteers and supporters.  The cost is $16, click here to purchase a cool holiday gift which helps felines find forever homes.

We remain inspired by the blogville connections that arise from posting and the kindness and good that gets done.

Another great let’s help some felines, day.

Thanks to Sugar and Kol for initiating Tasty Tuesdays, today is our thirty-fourth participating post!