June 30, 2010

well HELLO cowboy!

We had arrived...and it was real. Not a freaky dream I had dreamed up in my head. We were really on Ree Drummond's ranch for the weekend. I don't think I was the only one that was a little bit star struck, but the look on my friends face here, I am thinking that we were all bit amazed. Or maybe Cyndee was just afraid that Ree was going to shoot somebody with her shooter finger.

No one got shot in the course of our introductions. I did get labeled the "hug-hogger" though, because Ree hugged me twice, right off the bat...hug...hug. What they did not know and apparently Ree did, cause she is very knowledgeable in all sorts of stuff, is that is was hug a blogger day. So Ree just wanted to get it in before she forgot I am sure.

Ree graciously showed us around the place and we got acquainted as we went. She made us feel so at home. The Lodge is WAY more amazing in real life. Pictures DO NOT do it justice. Sorry to say. She made sure we knew to make ourselves at home, the fridgeratorS (plural) were stocked. Ree is a very busy mom, so she gave us the lay of the land and headed back to her place to take care of some very important business, (nothing big really....just finishing up "Black Heels to Tracker Wheels" !!!) so she could spend more time with us the rest of the weekend.

So Ree vamoosed and we got busy trying the cowboy hats and making ourselves at home.

I was very, VERY, anxious to get busy in the marvelous kitchen that was before me. I wanted it all to myself.

I NEEDED some alone time to create yummy stuff....

So I kicked um out. I said, "hit the road ladies" "the dusty trail" "out of my hair please I need to bake, and make pizza dough and stuff......"

Pizza....we will get out of your hair if you make us pizza...in fact we will run, we will run down the dusty trail and.......

then it happened....I did cart wheels and back flips and ran across counter tops.... I literally lost my marbles. Then I came back down to earth and made pizza dough, and malted milk chocolate chip cookies.

And well I was doing that....the other ladies encountered this....


Cowboy Josh. "Well hello ladies, are you sure you should be walking at this time a day in this heat?" It was rather hot...like CRAZY hot, like hotter than haducci's HOT! But us Michigan girls are tough, our skin is actually still thawing out from the winter up North.

So the ladies walked back and right on there heels where some more cowboys....Josh must have sent out the smoke signal "women from north in Lodge....need entertainment".

After they showed us how swift and debonair they are on their horseys they had there selves a sit. And we all had a nice visit...and learned lots of interesting stuff about cowboys and ranching and calf nuts.

Then Cowboy Sam said, "I smell pizza...let us go forth and and eat."

It took a minute for the Potato Leek and Tomato Basil Pizzas to get done. So we got to hear ourselves even more interesting tales....love the accents...and the smiles. These boys were so sweet and fun. They are just kids...that work hard....very hard...very hard at crazy hours of the morning. It was fun...and now we are all face books friends!

There they are.....the beauty's. The yummy pizzas. My number one favorite thing to do is make food for peeps and here them say MMMMMmmm. It makes me crazy, I love it! Almost as much as I would love to have eat-O-vision right now....I am STARVING! Which how I could even feel remotely hungry after all I ate this past weekend is beyond me.

The cowboys were making yum noises too! I think I even caught Cowboy Josh eating the Potato Leek variety. But you might not want to tell Marlboro Man that....

Big D not looking so big next to Cowboy Sam!

"Come on boys it's time to go....it's gonna be an earlaaa mornin"

Stay tuned, I have a few more things to tell ya!

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Lodge Sandwich

I wanted to call it the Reewich, as in yummy sandwich made at Ree's Place, but written it didn't look right. Looked like I was calling Ree a witch. YIKES! That she is certainly NOT. I thought I should share it with you in case you get hungry while you are waiting for me to finish my story.

Friday afternoon we were all just relaxing. Reading, taking long walks (this troubled the cowboys....they wondered if it was a good idea to walk for pleasure in such heat), vegging in front of the T.V.

I had made Ree's French Breakfast Puffs earlier.

I am looking particularly lovely as you can see.

If you own The Pioneer Woman Cooks, Ree's cookbook, and you have not made the French Breakfast Puffs....well, well, um...

GET CRACKIN' cause these are the next best thing to sliced bread, let me tell ya!

So, as I was saying, a woman can not live on muffins, or in this case puffs alone. So around 1pm we started scrounging around and of course there was plenty of good fixin's in the Lodge kitchen. Ree, had our back.

With some inspiration from Laura, I came up with this mouth watering sammich!

Lodge Sandwich
2 slices white bread
softened butter for buttering
goat cheese
Swiss cheese
Monterrey jack cheese
1/4 very thinly sliced apple
2 thin slices of ham
course ground spicy mustard

Get a griddle or skillet hot. Butter your bread. Lay it buttered side down, now layer one side with Swiss cheese, lay apple over the Swiss, layer ham over that on the other side dob as much goat cheese as you dare then lay the slices of Monterrey jack on top of that. Now get that baby back together and place it on the skillet until browned and cheese starts to melt. Serve with a side of course ground spicy mustard, none of the wimpy hot dog mustard PLEESE.


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June 29, 2010

welcome to OKLAHOMA!

Still pinching myself at this point. Chest heavy hard to breath. Oh my goodness gracious, we are in Tulsa my friends. And here is the signage to prove it. Just so you know I was sweating my brains out of my arm pits at this point. Yes, directly out of my pits drooled my brain juices...never to return again.

I'm not happy or anything. I think that expression never left my face the entire weekend. There we are Big D, Dee, Me, and my seestor Carla. As you see we all are sportin some caffeine in our paws. It was an early morning but we are energized!

We attracted some looks in our P-Dub t-shirts. Lots of questions too. Still amazed at how many people do not know who "The Pioneer Woman" is. She has been on The View for Goodness sake PEOPLE! On our flight out of Grand Rapids, we had lots of questions. "Where are you going" "Why" "What are you going to do there".

Then the flight attendant welcomed us aboard, "We want to welcome the Peee Dooobs aboard our flight this morning. They are headed to Oklahoma to rope calves and ride horses and walk funny."

OK, strange flight attendant lady. Who I might add was THE oldest flight attendant I have ever seen. Thus the mixed up story. Just glad she did not call us the Peee Boobs.

Once we landed and gathered our luggage an Angel appeared from behind the ferns. Isn't he lovely? Adorable, for sure! This was our limo driver Kayle.

I had never ever, not in all my living breathing days been picked up at the airport by a limousine. Then to top it off a smiling driver that was young and hip and actually knew who the Ree Drummond is. FINALLY! Praise the Lord. His wife followers Ree too.

We felt like movie stars. Everyone was rubber neckin' it at us. Us with our P-Dub shirts on. It was CRAZY! Then my son sent me a text and addressed me as Beyonce....ok now that is going a bit too far. Oh MY the poor Kayle, we hit him with our cameras like the paparazzi. I think he thought HE was Beyonce. When he came around the corner we just unloaded on him with our shutters. K-ch, K-ch, K-ch......

Then Kayle assisted us into the limousine. Making us feel like Rock Stars.....little did we know that he himself is a rock star of sorts. You can read all about his adventures on his wife's funny website. He was so adorable and sweet....and thought nothing of it when our first request was "can you take us to the nearest liquor store".

Oh yeh, BABY we are wild and crazy and ready for some FUN!

Ree was the incredibly thoughtful and sweet....she was worried about us not getting a suitable lunch. So she set it up for us to eat at Bad Brad's in the town of Pawhuska. Pawhuska is the nearest town to the ranch. You could say it's a regular EPA-center. It is hoppin'. Well, at least Brad's is.

Is that not a site to behold. A white stretch limo parked in front of the smoke house at Bad Brad's BBQ in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Wonder how often that happens....

By the looks we received, I am thinking most likely it has NEVER happened. Our driver was feeling a bit out of place. We invited him to join us. Not that he was unsafe, not that the natives where going to hog tie him or anything.....

We just thought hey, why not. He's cute. And what a shame to have him miss out on some REALLY amazing BBQ!

There we are....NO we did not start with dessert. But that would have been a good idea.

I had myself the pork ribs, potato salad, and sweet beans. One word AMAZING! Oh, and one more word STUFFED! (I was stuffed, couldn't breathe...not sure I have room for cobbler stuffed)

OK, twist my arm. I guess I can savor a morsel or two of Brads famous cobbler. We ordered one in every flavor. Apple, peach, cherry, and blackberry, and we shared. It was perfect. We just needed a lil' sumthin' sa-weet!

Afterwards we stumbled out the front door and Kayle obliged in taking our picture in front of the sign. Brads IS definitely some good eatin! Triple D needs to land itself in Pawhuska. I will have to give my friend Guy a call. (wink)

"Damn Good Eatin" is right. So good Anna had to lie on her side for this picture.

To our good fortune....the liquor store was directly across the street from Brads. My, my imagine that. So some of us thought it best to walk off our meal before setting our but down, afraid that we would not be able to get our 'dairy-ares" up out of the limo...

The Grog Shop. Am I in Germany? Grog...isn't that German? Oh, brain don't fail me now. Nope, I am in Oklahoma, at one of the most interesting little liquor stores I have ever happened upon. Cause you know I happen upon so many.......

I got carded...seriously. With that turkey neck I got carded. I think his eyes were bad. Cataracts or something.

They had some very unusual things in the Grog. Whipped Lightening....hmmmm....very interesting. We did not buy it. But somehow it did end up at the Lodge. I am not going to disclose who brought it to the Lodge. I wouldn't want to ruin Ree's reputation or anything. OOps....did I just say Ree....I definitely meant Dee. Dee's reputation.

Kayle has his eyes on the road....we are on our way now. Fat, dumb and happy. Speaking for myself....of course. The rest of the gals were just happy...happy as clams in butter.

There it is Ree's driveway...or road. Whatever.....
It's long.
Very long. Like good thing it doesn't snow to much down here cause I wouldn't want to have to plow it. This was just the first stretch. We took a right turn and drove for another few....past the wild mustangs. That is a post all for itself...the horseys.

Thar she is! Waiting for us! AT THE LODGE. Pinch, pinch....OUCH! That hurt. I guess I am not dreaming. I do feel a little faint though. Ears are pounding...mouth dry...pits wet....."ring O fire".

Isn't she lovely? This is just the beginning. I hope I don't completely and utterly bore you to DEATH with my pictures and blather...I just want to share...share...share it ALL.
You know I luv ya!

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June 28, 2010

Chocolate Chip Nuggets

Are you like me? Embarrassed to show your face at the corner ice cream shop again. Because when you do they look at your muffin top hangin' over your jean shorts rather than look you in the eye. Or maybe you're just afraid they might say, "hey isn't this your third time here today". "Well I did ride my bike....." kinda wipes the slate clean doesn't it?

Or maybe, just maybe you don't live within 30 miles of an ice cream shop or store that sells ice cream. Then you must resort to making your own fun toppings such as Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Nuggets.

Oooh la la, now were talkin', am I speaking your language? You will be the mom/dad of the summer after you whip up these tasty nuggets for ice cream or just to snack on.

1 cup flour + 2 tablespoons
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

Cream the butter with the sugars.

Add the milk and vanilla mix well, scrape sides of bowl with spatula, mix again.

Combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Add to the butter mixture. Mix well.

Mix in the mini chips. You are welcome to add more if you like your chip to dough ratio on the high side.

Now line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and pinch of little nuggets and lay them on the paper.

My son informed me that these nuggets were way too big for ice cream sundays. He was right, I ended up cutting them in halves and quarters after they had been frozen for about a half an hour.

"Hi, you sweet little nuggy, wuggy you. Aren't you cute. Hope you don't mind air conditioning." Now you need to move some stuff around (in my case I had to move the waffles and frozen calf nuts that I brought back from Oklahoma) and stick the cookie sheet in the freezer for at least one hour. When they are hard and won't squish when you try and give the cutie pies a squeeze they are ready to put on ice cream or you can throw them in a freezer bag and save them for when ever you get the urge!

If vanilla is your flavor....

Or perhaps chocolat-A!

What did you say? You think I am stalling....

Really. I need to what?

Get my butt in gear and post my PW Ranch visit....OK, OK. I'm workin' on it. I seriously have a heap-o-pictures to get through, and I needed to love on my kiddos with some chocolate nuggets. So it will be soon. Be patient with me.


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