Organic Spinach Ribbons Topped With Smoked Mozzarella

Organic Spinach Ribbons Topped With Smoked Mozzarella

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Happy Saturday everyone!

It's been a minute since my last post.  It truly is my goal to blog every day.  As my followers know, Chris and I own a very busy B&B in the Ozark Mountains and it, more times that not, takes me away from OkraLogic . A Girl Cook.   But in 2012, I'm truly going to try and touch base every day! :)

It's Saturday.  It's a beautiful Saturday.  The sun is shining on this beautiful Saturday.  I'm sitting here looking out the window amazed at how blue the sky is.  It's seriously like an oil painting.    On a day this beautiful it got me thinking about picnics I used to go on as a child.  Well, let me re-phrase that.  It got me thinking about FABULOUS picnics I would go on as a child.  Everyone loves picnics, right?  We offer picnic baskets at the inn that are a HUGE hit with guests - they just can't get enough of them!

What do YOU think of when you hear - "let's go on a picnic!" - ?  I think MOST people think ~ sandwiches, cold pasta salad, paper napkins, brownies, fruit, cheese .......

Well, not my Mom.  They were a true original one-of-a-kind production.  She would start planning the picnic on a Monday.  She'd get her "lists" going on the kitchen table. You couldn't even see the top of the kitchen table.  Frankly, she looked a little nuts with a pencil over each ear wildly pouring over endless magazines and cookbooks with her glasses perched on her perfect nose.  It was a flurry of pure determination.  I learned early NOT to disturb her if she was "making a list."  We lived with my Grandfather and Pappy would say, "Leesie, dont' go in the kitchen.  Your mother is making a "list."  Yeah, I'm serious!  LOL  There were "lists" for appetizers.  There were "lists" for desserts.  There were "lists" for cheese.  You see, each "list" had (at least) 4-5 options.  That was on Monday.  On Tuesday there were 2-3 options.  On Wednesday, the "list" had been finalized with the category winners proudly displayed on a pice of paper where the cursive writing seemed to boast a little more flourish than on her previous "lists."  I assume this was due to the "list euphoria" she was experiencing.

In case you think this was the end of "the list", silly you!!  See, on Wednesday the "grocery list" would be created.  On Wednesday the "alphabetized grocery list" would be created.  On Thursday after work she'd go to the grocery store to fetch all the supplies and walk through the front door with a smile on her face like she had just won the lottery.   On Friday evening she'd stay up cooking 'till the wee hours prepping and dancing around the kitchen like a kid in a candy store for our super special and super fabulous Saturday afternoon picnic.

To this day, I am obsessed with making "lists."  Clearly, a genetic shortcoming.  And, yes, I alphabetize my grocery lists too.  HaHa!

The picnics were incredible.  The picnics were fun.  The picnics were one of a kind.  The picnics were a true one of a kind production.   One time we had a picnic on the front lawn under this enormous tree I loved to sit under and play Barbies.  One time we had a picnic at a lake where I fed the ducks ....who, chased me trying to bite my bottom ....but that's a whole other blog.  (haha)  Some picnics we'd build Play Doh animals.  Some picnics we'd have bubble blowing contests which I never won.  Some picnics we'd paint our faces like fairies.  Some picnics we'd catch worms and have worm races.  Some picnics we'd make necklaces by braiding flowers.  Like I said, these picnics were a true one of a kind experience.

My fave picnic of all time was one winter day.  I was 5.  We had a picnic in the living room in front of a fabulous roaring fire and toasted marshmallows....before we even opened the picnic basket.   I remember it was snowing.  I loved, and still love, the snow.  I wore my favorite green coat with the faux fur around the hood to the picnic.  The fact my Mom forgot to open the flue and the living room filled with smoke.....well, that just led to the whole one-of-a-kind picnic experience.  Pappy didn't seem to find it as funny as I did.  I remember I went upstairs and fetched my Fireman hat out of my toy chest and came back down and watched the chaos of my Mom running around the house opening all the windows and doors and fanning the air with a broom. I remember Pappy was running behind my mom closing all the windows and doors because, well, it was below freezing outside and snowing.  I remember I offered to get the hose from the backyard but my generous offer was quickly shot down.  Mostly, I remember that winter picnic in front of a fabulous roaring fire.

Are you wondering what we had at that fabulous winter picnic in the living room when I wore both my favorite green coat with the faux fur hood AND my shiny red fireman hat?  It was awesome!  It was incredible!  It was incredibly awesome.  And it all is below.  I attached a few recipes as I don't have all of my mom's recipes.  I still have her recipe box and all her cookbooks.  I still have a few of her handwritten recipe cards tucked away.  I still love picnics.  And, yes, that winter picnic is still my all time fave picnic!!

Go!  Get Outdoors!  Stay Indoors!  GET YOUR PICNIC ON!
"Always Push The Parsley!"
 ~ Lisa . A Girl Cook


BEFORE THE PICNIC (I like mine when they have black on the edges!)
Toasted Marshmallows

APPETIZER (so much fun as a kid!  I have made these as an adult and they're always a hit!)
Black olive cream cheese penguins with carrot feet & red pimento scarves

CHEESE  (we both loved blue cheese!)
Blue cheese mini cheese balls

Papaya  (my fave fruit of all time!)

Bread (my fave bread in the entire world!)

Entree (I love peanut sauce!)
Beef skewers with peanut sauce

Dessert  (I am in love with coconut!)
Coconut cupcakes

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