Monday, January 28, 2013

Olive and Pepper

It's been almost a year and a half since that rainy trip in the car. We left with a furry warm body and came home with a heavy shoe box lined with an old towel. We buried Charlie in the field. I'm still sad to think of her. Having her put to sleep was so hard but there was nothing they could do and I am glad she didn't suffer for too long. 

A house is just not a home without a cat lounging around, so we decided it was time to get another one. Since we've had such bad luck with kittens I wanted to find an older cat. 

There was a grey and white tabby pair from the humane society and when I met the girl kitty she promptly flopped over on her back to have her stomach scratched. I fell in love with her. 

We named them Olive and Pepper.

Gypsy Slow Down

Gypsy Slow Down

Olive is having a good time in the little brick house. She is small and fluffy and loves attention. 
Her brother is big and stately and hides under the couch. Also under the bed. And under the table. I'm not sure he is having such a good time. 

We didn't want to split them up so we adopted both cats. I know Pepper is just nervous and figuring things out. I can give him time to get adjusted, no problem. But at night he howls. 

Not meows. Howls. It's so unnerving and I just want to scoop him up in bed with me to comfort him but I can't because he is hiding under the bed and won't come out.

So after several nights of no sleep and getting up to make sure he has water and food and Witt threatening to take him back to the store, I researched and found these collars that are supposed to soothe a nervous cat using calming scents. 

We'll see how tonight goes!

So it's been quite the adventure around here these past few days.

There really is nothing like curling up in a warm house with the cold air outside and a soft cat on your lap. Pretty much perfect. This weekend we vowed that we would not do anything. Life has been so busy. I wanted to go away for the weekend but we decided to stay in and it was nice. Sunday night I made salmon cakes which were really tasty.

Gypsy Slow Down

I used a recipe by Ina Garten. I was out of a lot of her ingredients and didn't follow all her directions, so here is my modified version.

Spicy Salmon Cakes
  • 1/2 pound fresh salmon
  • Good olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 leek, washed and diced
  • 1/2 cup diced pepperoncini peppers
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoons sriracha hot sauce (or more to taste)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning 
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup good mayonnaise
  • 2 strips bacon, crumbled
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
  • Vegetable oil for frying

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Place the salmon on a sheet pan, skin side down. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until just cooked. Remove from the oven.
Meanwhile, place 2 tablespoons of the butter, 2 tablespoons olive oil, leek, parsley, capers, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, old bay seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a large saute pan over medium-low heat and cook until the vegetables are soft, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Add hot sauce and remove pan from heat. Flake the salmon and add to pan and stir to combine. Add 1/2 cup bread crumbs, mayo, mustard and eggs and mix well. Shape into cakes and dip each side in remaining bread crumbs to coat. Shake off excess. Head about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil in skillet.
 In batches, add the salmon cakes and fry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until browned. Drain on paper towels; keep them warm in a preheated 250 degree F oven and serve hot.

Gypsy Slow Down


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