Saturday, December 13, 2008

Weekend Cat Blogging: Holiday Cheer With a Little Hangover

We're hosting Weekend Cat Blogging and let me tell you, holiday preparations were in full swing in our house this week!

LB Guards the Christmas Tree

Not only did Mom decide to pull out the Christmas tree, which she decorated very pretty even if it took up some of my spot by the window, but she even bought a new wreath to put on the front door.

The Wreath on the Front Door

Then she put some pine garland and a pretty wreath with a bow on the front door of the building.

Front of House with Wreath

I heard her tell a friend that she was going to finish decorating the front stoop this weekend with some lights and a few more big red bows. I'm not so sure though that is going to happen today considering she is still in bed!

She had her company holiday party yesterday afternoon. The office party started at noon and lasted until 4pm but she and a few colleagues continued the party after the official party ended at a local Irish pub. She came home around 8pm singing Christmas carols at the top of her lungs. She looked kind of funny in her high heel boots and red sweater dress, a big Santa Claus hat on her head, some blinking lights and tinsel she "stole" from some well dressed business guy at the bar around her neck (She said he only asked for a holiday kiss under some mistletoe for the lights and tinsel). She tossed her coat on the couch, took a few ibuprofen and drank a big glass of water before falling into bed in her party clothes and tinsel still on. Now, she is telling me my purring sounds like a freight train running across her forehead. I say serves her right kissing strange men under mistletoe....

At least she got most of her Christmas baking done this week. She was in the kitchen every night after work making a different cookie for her cookie packages that will be delivered to friends this upcoming week. She is going to post about those later this week.

It wasn't only cookies she was baking either. On Monday night she finally cut into that whole Country Ham she brought back from Tennessee after Thanksgiving.

Cubed Country Ham

She stuck with her Pantry Plan too by making a quiche of spinach from the freezer, onion and swiss from the fridge and the ham of course. She used her go to crust from Alice Water's Simple Cooking. It was fantastic tasting and she had enough to share with a friend at work, who told her it was the best quiche she had ever had!

Spinach Country Ham Quiche

Speaking of the Pantry Plan, Mom told me quite a few friends of hers have been playing along with her and she loves to see what people are doing on their own versions of the Pantry Plan. Mom still follows her plan and has reduced her weekly grocery bill to under $50 a week by not only planning her menu around what she has on hand but also paying attention to the weekly grocery fliers and only buying what is in season for fresh veggies.

OK, I'm feeling pretty tired from all this typing and it is time for my mid-morning nap. I think I'll just curl up right here under the Christmas tree until Mom gets up,

LB Naps Under the Christmas Tree

takes that stupid tinsel off her face where it settled some time in the middle of the night, and has a long hot shower while drinking a huge pot of coffee and then figures out what she is going to do for the rest of the day before she heads out for another evening out on the town.

I'm betting she doesn't stir until at least noon!

If you want to tell us what you and your kitties are doing this weekend. Just leave me a comment. I'll post about each and every one of you tomorrow evening.

If you want to make Mom's fantastic Country Ham and Spinach quiche

Slice of Spinach Country Ham Quiche

here is the recipe.

Country Ham and Spinach Quiche

2 Tbsp butter (use unsalted because of the salt in the ham)
1 Cup chopped, cooked Country Ham (any ham will do)
1 small onion, chopped
1 package frozen spinach, thawed and excess liquid pressed out
2 Tbsp flour (any type of flour will work)
3 eggs
1 3/4 cup milk (don't use skim but 1% works fine)
1/4 tsp sage
1 tsp Herbs Provence
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
9" pie crust (your favorite recipe or store bought is fine)

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare pie crust if making from scratch and put in prepared pie pan. If using frozen crust, remove from freezer and let thaw. If using refrigerator pie crust, remove from fridge, follow directions and put in prepared pie crust.

In small skillet, melt 1 Tbsp butter over medium heat. Add onion and saute until slightly brown. Remove onions from skillet, add 1 Tbsp of butter and ham. Saute until slightly brown. Add onions back in to combine, remove from heat and set aside.

Combine spinach and flour and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat eggs, milk, herbs, and pepper. Stir in ham, spinach and 3/4 cup of cheese. Pour into crust and bake for 25 minutes.

After 25 minutes, sprinkle remaining cheese over top of quiche. Use foil or pie ring if crust is getting too brown and bake for another 15 - 20 minutes longer or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean.

Remove from oven and let sit for 5 minutes for quiche to firm up before slicing.

Serve with lettuce salad and white wine for a nice lunch or makes a great Holiday morning breakfast with fresh baked cinnamon rolls and mimosas.