We had no internet.
And not just no high speed internet…
I mean NO INTERNET at all. Zip. Zilch. Nada.
We also had no telephone or cable.
Can you tell we have a package from the same company?
We are Rogers customers. Apparently, someone cut the main trunk line feeding the services to Northern New Brunswick. We have no idea how it happened as yet. I’m sure Rogers wants to know that answer too. I was able to get this information only because we have a cheap “pay as you go” cell phone and I called my brother. He was kind enough to get in touch with Rogers for me.
Ok – so a bit of tongue-in-cheek on that title. However, I’m sure that there are a large number of people out in the world who would have been seriously peeved and probably lost without contact of some form. Good thing for them, there are internet cafes and libraries that are connected. Worse comes to worse, they could show up on their neighbours front step and ask to use the services. OR – you could just drive around until you find an unsecured WIFI 🙂
I have to say, I actually enjoyed my time of isolation. I cooked, baked, took photos and did more purging and backing up of files. (I have all my photos from 2008 to 2010 backed up – my eyes have gone funny though). I started working through a backlog of magazines too. Got the floors cleaned, (I personally did not clean the floors – Negative Ned does that.)
Dishes? check. Laundry? check check
I did not go out for a walk today because I was busy in the kitchen. (Convenient excuse – it was freaking chilly out there today)
However, the walk we took yesterday was lovely. I have pictures…. I’ll show those tomorrow.
Today I want to share the kitchen. It still smells divine in here.
So what did I create in the kitchen?
Slow Cooker Beef Stew
1 lb of grade A stewing beef
1 small onion finely chopped
3 medium carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 stalks of celery, finely sliced
4 small peeled and cubed potatoes and 1 good size one (because I love potatoes)
1 Beef stock cube
Cut the beef cubes into smaller pieces.
Using a frying pan, sear / brown the beef cubes in 1 tsp butter
Pour the beef into the slow cooker and return the pan to the stove.
Add another tsp of butter to the pan and cook onions for 1 minute.
Pour onions into slow cooker.
Add vegetables and water to cover
Throw in the beef stock cube ( I don’t bother crumbling or cutting it as it will dissolve over time)
Add your spices / seasoning. I give about 6 shakes from each container and that seems to be about right taste wise.
Cook on low heat for 2 hours and shift over to high for 3 more hours. After which, you can drop it to warm setting. If you start this early enough in the day, you can leave it on the low cook temp the whole time.
You can click on this image to see it larger I think. I added a few personal notes.
Delicious. I serve it up with my skid row Garlic toast which is basically hamburger buns buttered, sprinkle garlic powder and pan fry until toasted. It adds a nice little zip.
And for dessert
Peanutty Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
1 cup rolled oats
¾ cup all purpose flour
½ tsp baking soda
10 ozs semi sweet chocolate chips
1 ½ cups peanut butter ( used smooth but you can use the chunky too)
½ cup butter or margarine
¾ cup sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 ½ tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a smaller bowl, combine flour, oats and baking soda. Set aside.
In the main bowl, cream together peanut butter and butter. Beat in sugars.
Blend in the eggs and vanilla. Add dry ingredients to this mix and blend.
Stir in the chocolate chips.
Drop by tablespoon onto greased or parchment lined cookie sheet.
(I use parchment to avoid adding anymore fats to the recipe.)
Bake 10 – 12 minutes. The top may look a little under done but as long as the bottom edges show colour it’s cooked. This cookie is delicious either way – soft and chewy or nice and crisp. Cool on wire rack.
I get an even 4 dozen from one batch and they freeze well …
Although I can’t attest to the freezing part – they usually don’t last long enough to freeze.
The batch pictured here went to my parents.