Saturday, February 19, 2011

Kara sure does know how to throw us for a loop

After two weeks of absolutely miserable sleep habits, Kara decided to go for 8-hours of mostly uninterrupted sleep last night! She woke briefly around 4am and again about an hour later, but allowed herself to be reassured back to sleep. Sadly, it came about following a previous night of about 8 hours of nighttime sleep, followed by a stunningly horrible half-hour of nap time during the day, so there are no guarantees that she'll be able to do this consistently. Ah well.


Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Another cassoulet!

I love making variations on a traditional cassoulet. This one used duck confit, merguez sausage, white beans, and organic garlic, onion, carrots and canned, crushed tomatoes.

Sadly, the confit didn't end up turning out as well as I'd have liked; I followed this recipe for duck confit again (I've made it about three times now) and can say — definitively — that it cures the meat before it's cooked. The end result is a surprisingly tough — not meltingly smooth — meat. I'm probably going to use up the duck fat reserves I've been keeping on-hand on things like potatoes, instead.

The good news is that the beans and carrots are perfectly cooked: tender, not-underdone, but not mushy. The sausage adds a headier "aroma" to this dish than usual, but I like it.

Overall, this is a good, hearty casserole for mid-winter, but I haven't quite perfected it yet.


Wednesday, February 02, 2011


Since egg yolks are an acceptable protein source for infants of Kara's age, I've found myself up to my eyeballs in egg whites. I decided to use up the surplus by making meringues. These are light with the chewy interior that one gets in a Pavlova. I've already eaten more than half the batch!

A big thanks to Caty for using part of her post-birthday week off to keep an eye on Kara while I got these made.

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