One of the most enjoyable aspects of blogging is the analytics.  Sure, the days with low traffic are no picnic, but looking through the data can yield fascinating insights. Like the fact that somehow a small pocket of people in the Netherlands really like my blog. You would think that my Canadian relatives would be responsible for the large majority of my non-US site visits, but nope, not them.  Apparently in the Netherlands they dig fried BLTs…or see the humor in Tim Ferriss…or have a sick and twisted desire to read about a mother feeding her unsuspecting children radishes.

So hats off to my Dutch peeps.  Goedemorgen! Ik spreak een kline betje Netherlands. 

Actually, I just swiped that phrase from the Internet, but I promise to learn a little bit more of the language to keep you coming back for more good times. Because, truthfully, I’m worried that someday I may offend your Northern European sensibilities with some little-known facts.  A few for consideration:

1. I’m only 5’2”, so much smaller than my husband that he fondly refers to me as his “pocket wife”.  However, do not let my small stature turn you off.  I enjoy the company of large people!  I married a man who is 6’6” and who gave me three giant children, one of whom is a 20-month old blonde baby girl who wears a size 8 shoe.  You would love her, she would mix seamlessly with the other children in your Dutch playgrounds. 

2. The only Dutch food I’ve eaten in the US was at the restaurant “The Dutch” in NYC, which is in fact, not Dutch at all.

3. I don’t root for your speed skaters in the Winter Olympics because they win everything and let’s give the other countries a chance for crying out loud.

Good, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I feel better, don’t you?

Hopefully you’re not feeling angry, shocked, or completely let down.  Like when you heard the truth about Lance Armstrong, but worse.  If you do feel that way, I have the perfect antidote.


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I’m thinking of pitching the networks about a Top Chef moms’ edition.  Where untrained home cooks come together to battle each other in a series of challenges, one of which would be an arm wrestle followed by a beer chug.  If you want to try this with a group of neighborhood moms, the Executive Gift Shoppe sells 32-ounce mugs for the bargain basement price of $35 each.  

The Executive Gift Shoppe being THE place to shop for the executive in your life, should you wish to buy him or her a gigantic beer mug, laser pointer, or something from the “Executive games” category.  Which disappointingly turned out to be nothing more than rosewood chess and card sets.  Although the Business & Pleasure Stationery Box is available for the naughtier executive in your life.

Another challenge would be the cook-out-of-the fridge battle where we’d scrounge around shelves filled with old yogurts, shriveled cucumbers and a pack of Baker’s unsweetened chocolate.  Trying to make something so tasty Tom Colicchio would smack his lips and sing “Hallellujah!”

Which is what I do just about every Sunday (cook out of a naked fridge, not the Tom thing, but that would be very cool too).  So heads up fellow moms – if we ever do battle on Top Chef, I may have a pretty unfair advantage here.


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EggsOnSaladI’ve stopped counting the number of eggs I eat in a day.  It’s grotesque.  But you just can’t beat them for their portability and nutritional punch.  I keep them in my fridge, hard-boiled and wrapped in their protective shell, ready and waiting for those times when my stomach gets a little bitchy and starts growling at me to get her some grub or else….Well, I don’t know what the “or else” would be, but she has the ability to throw off my whole program if I go too long without feeding her.

Strangely enough, Tim Ferriss of the 4-Hour Workweek fame, seems to have a similar affinity for eggs, which I’ve learned from his incessant promotion of his latest book, the 4-Hour Chef.  Who knew the guy could cook.  I guess if he’s spending the other 164 hours of his week practicing Tango in Bolivia, body-building on Venice Beach and learning his 19th language, cooking ought to factor somewhere.  If you want to know more about Tim Ferriss and his eggs, you can check out his YouTube videos where he does odd things to them, like using baking soda to blow hard-boilers out of their shells. From the cheery confines of his dimly-lit kitchen where he may or may not be storing roadkill in his cabinets, you can catch a glimpse of Tim doing what he does best: smugly rocking your world.  Seriously, I have to try the hard-boiled egg trick.  It may be game-changing.

However, the goal of this post is not to talk about Tim Ferriss, but rather, my lunch.  I’ve made this meal a few times now, and each time I’m surprised by how good it is.  I’ve searched around online, and it seems that my idea is hardly novel: to top a puckeringly-bright green salad with scrambled eggs.  But somehow it feels original, even in its simplicity.

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ChickenfinalAt the risk of becoming known as the second coming of Guy Fieri, I wanted to share my latest Crazy Day meal.  This is on the heels of the fried BLT and honestly, I know I should space out these kinds of posts lest I get a bad rap for artery-clogging food, but I recently made a chicken sandwich worth sharing.

One of my friends reached out to me in a panic asking “what do you do on the nights when you have no time.  I mean zero.  You get back from the kids’ classes and it’s dinner time right away.”

My answer to that question, after I suggest “Progresso?” is this: a rotisserie chicken sandwich with arugula, avocado, and lime.  “That’s dinner”? you say.  Yes, it is, it’s hearty, satisfying, is made from real ingredients, and takes all of 5 minutes to put together.  And it’s not Progresso.  Or boxed mac ‘n cheese.  It’s perfect on those days when you (and your kids) are crying out for fast food and you don’t want to give in.

The other great thing about this sandwich is that it satisfies my need for big flavors, but the kids like it as well.  Even if they won’t eat it all together as one sandwich, deconstructed it’s really just a big slab of bread, some chunks of avocado, chicken, greens…Kind of their ideal meal.

Chicken_ingredientsThe important thing about this recipe is that you use chicken with the skin on. Leg meat. Often the skin is pulled off and thrown to the side, which in my view is a big mistake.  The skin and the leg meat are the best-tasting parts of the bird. See that missing leg on my chicken?  That’s what happens when I walk through the door with a fresh rotisserie chicken – especially those from Forager’s Market in Chelsea.  As Mario Batali once said, the breast meat is what you should feed to the dogs, and I kind of agree (but of course, suit your taste).

Although it’s a quick meal, this particular chicken sandwich depends on fresh ingredients. Trust me, there is a huge difference between a  fresh loaf of bread, a juicy chicken, and bright green arugula (not the wilted yellow stuff that you’re waiting to salvage from the cooler—throw that stuff AWAY.  NOW.  It has no good use anymore, except maybe as a side dish for the breast meat you’re feeding to the dog.)


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LoxLet me preface this by saying that I should not spa.  When I do get a massage, I prefer the budget-friendly hole in the wall down the street, where your $60 buys you an hour-long spot on a table in a public room.  It gets the kinks out with minimal fanfare, and off I go.

But last week was my birthday and I decided to treat myself to something a little more special.  A real spa experience where I could lounge around after my massage, drink a chamomile tea, and read trashy magazines.  I mean the Harvard Business Review. 

Spas are like a trip to the Caribbean with kids.  You anticipate how relaxing it will be.  But the reality is that you spend 7 days smearing sunscreen on squirming little faces, cleaning sandy bums, and helping navigate menu options like a tired and grumpy waiter.  By the end of it all, you’re more exhausted than when you arrived, and are somewhat anxious to get back home.

Same thing with spas.  I go there with the best intentions, but often leave more stressed than when I came.  All those women walking around naked.  It’s like a perpetual car accident– you want to look away but my God there are naked people everywhere and it’s kind of hard not to look.

And those nondescript hallways with minimal signage…I always worry I’ll open the wrong door and end up in the lobby wearing nothing but my robe and a bungee key.  And let’s not forget the age-old question about underwear – to wear or not to wear.  Will my masseuse think I’m a pervert if I go commando? Am I showing how unrefined I am by wearing them?

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