14 October 2013

Steak Capers and Monday Adventuring

Yesterday afternoon, we were really excited to be trying out this new technique for making roasts: preheat the oven to 500, bake at 475 for seven minutes per pound, turn off the oven and don't open it for two and a half hours. Poof, roast beast. It sounds so easy, the perfect way to make dinner on nights when I have to turn everything off and go pick Matt up from work!

I coated our moose roast in a combination of garlic, celery salt, basil, marjoram, rosemary, and pepper before going to put Little Bear to bed, and Matt took care of getting it in the oven, timing it, and turning it off. We enjoyed the smells wafting out of the kitchen for the next two and a half hours, and shortly before 6, pulled our room-temperature roast out. And looked at it skeptically. Was that done? Matt cut into it to check.

It appears that our (fairly old) oven is not well insulated! We already sort of knew that it didn't stay hot while baking, but somehow that didn't translate into the thought that "gee, this probably won't work for us." Foruntately, the broiler works fine, and we had wonderful, delicious steaks in five minutes:

Oh, my. That is a spice combination to remember. The long slow par-roasting left the steaks incredibly tender, too. Leftovers will be starring in a moose pie with mashed potato crust this evening.

Provided that Little Bear wakes up in time for me to make it, that is. He must be going into a growth spurt: he's so sleepy these days. Last night he fell asleep quickly, really only half-woke up once (at 4:30) to nurse for a few minutes, and slept again until we had to wake him at 7:30 to go take Matt to work. With so much sleep, he was a very happy child this morning, and I took full advantage of that plus actually having the car to run all over town. Two grocery stores, the gas staton, the kitchen supply store (closed, sadly), the used bookstore, and the university museum where we met my siblings for homeschoolers' day! 

The first grocery store, he was happy all the way through, looking at everything, exclaiming over the balloons and pumpkins (ball! ball!) and insisting that I bring home some of those tomatoes. Those ones, Mama. The second store, he wanted me to hold him up so he could help me push the cart. I'll only have one little one once, right? The store was pretty empty, and it made him happy, so I let him. Since the kitchen supply store was closed, whether for Columbus Day or because things just open later here in the winter I'm not sure, we had time to pop into the used bookstore and drop off a book before heading up to campus. This store accepts books in trade for credit to be applied to purchasing other used books, which can be a great way to get rid of books I no longer want and not feel too guilty about buying other ones!

Little Bear was a little bit too small for the Children's Museum exhibit, and a lot too intimidated by all of the loud kids running around, but he loved the real museum today! We got there right as they opened, so most kids were still playing in the Children's Museum while we walked through the art galleries and main exhibit hall. They have life size standing mounts of grizzly bear, black bear, polar bear, buffalo, dall sheep, seals, and many species of birds and fish. There are mammoth and mastodon fossils you can touch, part of a triceratops, a whale skull longer than our living room, and many exhibits on Alaskan history and Native cultures. It was hard to get him to hold still long enough to take photos!

A Tlingit totem pole.

Bear! Bear!

Bivalves (right before he shut his fingers in the drawer, and we had to go out in the hall to calm down).

I'm so glad we went--he had so much fun looking at everything, and it'd been long enough since I'd last visited that it was fun to walk around again. Little Bear wanted to walk around instead of being carried as long as there weren't a lot of other people, so he did an excellent job of wearing himself out and went down for a nap as soon as we got home. This morning's rain clouds seem to be breaking up and he is starting to stir, so maybe we will have time to take a walk before starting to make supper and picking Daddy up from work. My Mondays are usually quiet at home; this almost feels like I got an extended weekend!

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