Category: happiness

What is Your Comfort?


This question came up in a group last night, and folks took their responses in all directions: chocolate, sex, a martini, destructive behaviors, feeling known by another.

Which made me think about the types of comfort in my world. The blissed out, giggly feeling of too many drinks where no trouble can touch the mind; the warmth and safety of being held closely by someone who cares; the satisfying and salty mouthfeel and flavor of homemade macaroni and cheese; the lightness of spirit following a meaningful conversation that ends in accepting silence; the cool smoothness of crisp cotton sheets on a lazy weekend morning.   

I’ll raise a glass of hot coffee to this, the discovery of comforts in life.

“Research tells us that 14 out of any 10 individuals like chocolate.” ― Sandra Boynton

Hankering for Brown Sauce

You know, brown sauce. The yummy goodness that broccoli beef comes slathered in at Chinese restaurants. The stuff you pour over flavorless, dry white rice and it instantly makes your tastebuds sigh in happiness. But how do feed the craving while the wind howls outside during a tropical storm warning?

Solution: you make it!

My cooking style is is less Julia and more Contessa: find out the basic ingredients then add varying amounts to get the best result. (Hint: this doesn’t work as well in frosting. See strawberry cake ooze for details). I didn’t have any broth, or bouillion or stock, nor cornstarch. But by golly, it came out the perfect level of salty goodness I needed.  I served it with a chicken, broccoli and pineapple stir-fry.

Basic Brown Sauce

The secret ingredient

 3 cloves garlic
4 TBS brown sugar
3 TBS oyster sauce
3 TBS soy sauce
1 tsp flour
1 TBS oil (olive or corn)

Whisk all ingredients together, except the oil. Heat a pan and add the oil. Pour ingredients in and let it boil. Add water as needed for desired consistency. Either pour over ingredients or add ingredient to pan and cook with sauce.

OBX or …

Night 1 turned into Morning 1 as we stayed up to watch the sun rise.

Update 9/7/11: Awesome and amazing trip full of perfect sunny days and cool, breezy evenings. I recommend Corolla, NC to anyone looking for a relaxing beach trip.

Update 8/30/11: And we are go for launch!

Thanks, Irene. The tension continues as 8 people try to agree on a Plan B vacation. Couple fights, misinformation, exchanges including: my preparendess knowledge is better than yours, how much money can you spend, where is a beach open within driving range, how can we say it’s okay if the rental office is flooded, do you care if the pool and spa have debris floating in them, what about a lake house out west, can you change your vacation days, when does the travel insurance kick in, i might need you to watch my cat… http://www.newsobserver.com/2011/08/28/1442446/road-closures-reported-in-eastern.html