Fridge on the Fritz?!?

 

I’ve got a tip for you when you leave for vacation.  Put a half filled water bottle in the freezer on its side.  Before you leave, set it upright.  When you return, if the water is anything other than against and up one wall, you need to  throw out your stuff!  Make sense?!? You had an energy outage 🙁   If you love Lula’s sage ideas you can get them once a week here!

You’d Better Get Used to Seaweed!

It might be a major diet component in the coming decades…but for NOW, we’re just going to discuss Kombu – a dried kelp that contains “umami” (specifically glutamic acid but what do you care?!?).  If you missed that post look it up!

Kombu is used in Japanese (and my) cooking to enhance umami in many dishes – it can be found in Asian markets and these days quite a few grocery stores in dried form.  Kombu is also a vegetarian source of the brain function enhancing Omega 3 fatty acid.

Just drop one 2×2 square per quart of liquid into soups and stews (think vegetable soup, tomato sauce) and pull it out when the liquid begins to simmer.  You don’t want to forget it-  bitter compounds form at a full boil.  But you WILL add that indefinable “what is IN this that makes it so rich and tasty?!?” vibe if you pull it out at the simmer!  If you liked this tidbit you can get one weekly here!

When’s The Last Time you VISITED Your City?!

Sometimes guests coming in from out of town are the BEST incentive to help us delight in our hometowns – a reason to act like a tourist and experience what others experience from your city…and this just happened to me when my brother and sister in law came with their XXX-hole Welsh Corgie Ace (their words not mine!) and their two friends from North Carolina. Ace and His Royal Hinee The Crown Prince Floyd Wong the Pug got on famously.  My brother is a tennis nut (former pro!) and he and his friend Junior delighted themselves with the Western-Southern Open in Mason.  While they frolicked in the sun and heat, the ladies played in our own special way.  The real FUN began when I had 2 days to plan fun girl stuff with a taste of our city.  Susan loves museums and shopping so we did both: day one, Donna Salyer’s Fabulous Furs!!  They weren’t open but graciously flung wide the doors when I banged and banged…we got our very own private shopping spree!!!  If you haven’t been…this is a shopper’s paradise.  Stuff not only for your body but for your home. Many holiday gifts were bought! We worked up quite an appetite so we headed over to Coppins in Hotel Covington  – all of the food is delicious here but I am ALWAYS excited about their Buffalo Cauliflower Sandwich (and I love meat!), and their biscuit passed muster from the peach-skin squad.  We then perused the artifacts from Coppins Department store and spent a little money in the gift shop. First, I thought…FOOD.  (Of course.)  I could have rustled up something fancy for their first night in, but instead I went old school.  They are all from the deep south so I dove down “deep” – with smoked pork and brisket, my 6-Cheese Mac, Spicy Maytag Slaw, and Watermelon-Feta Salad.  Of COURSE it was the best meal they had of their stay (THIS is a smiley face).

The real FUN began when I had 2 days to plan fun girl stuff with a taste of our city.  Susan loves museums and shopping so we did both: day one, Donna Salyer’s Fabulous Furs!!  They weren’t open but graciously flung wide the doors when I banged and banged…we got our very own private shopping spree!!!  If you haven’t been…this is a shopper’s paradise.  Stuff not only for your body but for your home. Many holiday gifts were bought! We worked up quite an appetite so we headed over to Coppins in Hotel Covington  – all of the food is delicious here but I am ALWAYS excited about their Buffalo Cauliflower Sandwich (and I love meat!), and their biscuit passed muster from the peach-skin squad.  We then perused the artifacts from Coppins Department store and spent a little money in the gift shop.

After fortification, we took the Suspension Bridge over to the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center .  I pointed out the Eternal Flame that burns 24/7, lighting the way north – but did you know that crossing the Mason-Dixon line did not ensure safety – the only way to be safe was to make it to Canada?  An escaped slave always had a bounty on his/her head and could be returned if caught.  I was a docent here the first 2 years the Freedom Center was open, and a visit never fails to move me.  Of particular interest this visit was Contemporary Slavery – over 27 Million human beings are currently enslaved across the world.  I learned, among other things, how to purchase a rug that no slave trader would profit from.  We also were treated to an impromptu “Implicit Bias” seminar.  Dinner was so good at home the night before we just came home and did it again!

Day 2 included lunch at one of my all time faves: Jean Robert’s Table on Vine Street.  I’m not going to tell you about their cafeteria lunch because I don’t want everyone crowding in and making it harder for me to get a seat! J  ALWAYS a hit with whomever I drag there, not only for the food but the interesting people you meet!

Then a bit of wandering in OTR – of particular interest this visit was A World of Beads and Elm & Iron .  If you lose your way with sparkly things…A World of Beads is for you – just browse, or take a class in making your own jewelry!  Their unfinished stones are amazing.  Elm and Iron is so much FUN … everytime you walk in you want to decorate your house in a different way!! We couldn’t let a visit from “foreigners” finish up without a nod to our Ohio River – so a cruise on B&B Riverboats was in order.  One critique – PLEASE run the boat all the way down to Coney Island, Riverbend and Belterra!!  Not FAIR!!

Finally, a meal at one of G and my faves: Walt’s Hitching Post.  You really can’t get a better steak in the area, though half of the time I order their fried shrimp – it’s got a kick to it!  A booze hound has GOT to love their bourbon list.  I savor an Angel’s Envy Rye as my dessert every time we go.

If you’re exhausted I understand.  I was too.  Next time I’m taking everyone to a float pod!!

A Note From Chef Lori

We LOVE partying with you over the holdiays…but book fast – Lula only has two hands!! Click here to visit our website!

Seasoned Squash Seeds = Savory or Sweet Snacks!

Lula’s ABC Soup (Apple, Butternut Squash & Curry)

Did you know you can treat any squash seeds the same as pepitas (pumpkin seeds)?  Do just what you would do with the pumpkin- separate the seeds from the pulp, put in a single layer on a cookie sheet and cook in a preheated 300 degree oven for 15-20 minutes.  Get creative with your seasonings!  Cinnamon and sugar, or Rosemary & sea salt … the combinations are endless!!  For more mouthwatering pics visit here !

Pumpkin Packs a Punch!

Pumpkin seeds are one smart snack. They’re rich in zinc, a mineral vital for memory and thinking skills. They’re also packed with magnesium, a mineral that fights inflammation and contributes to the creation of new brain cells.

In addition, pumpkin seeds contain a hefty amount of tryptophan, an amino acid that the body converts to the good-mood chemical serotonin. As if that’s not enough, pumpkin seeds contain a wide variety of antioxidants that may slow brain aging.  At Lula’s for Lunch…and More! Catering , we  toast our pumpkin seeds and use them in many salads as well as garnish entrees for a satisfying crunch!  This picture is of our Citrus Avocado Salad.  Now, drool!