Guest Submission: Es’s Homemade Baked Cheese Crisps


Make awesome crunchy cheese crisps with just a few ingredients (or just one) and a few minutes.

Ingredients
Cheese
Optional – herbs or spices.
I sprinkled some dried parsley, rosemary and thyme.

Instructions
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Line a baking sheet with PARCHMENT paper (Do not try anything else)

I used Cracker Barrel Slices.
Cut sandwich slices into 4 equal sized pieces and place onto the parchment, a couple of inches apart.
I only placed 12 on a tray as they spread as they bake.
Bake ±7 minutes or until beginning to brown around the edges.
Leave them on the tray for ±5 minutes, to set a bit, before gently scooping it up with a plastic or metal egg-lifter and place on a cold surface or plate and allow to cool complete, to finish getting crispy.

Some additional info: Please note that as each oven differs, you may have to bake it a little bit longer to get it nice and crispy. Another factor would be the amount of fat/oil in your cheese. I ended up baking mine a bit longer (say in total about 10 minutes) but be careful not to burn them, to ensure it remains crisp. Today it’s still yummy and crispy like a chip.

Source: Saw this idea on the internet, and could not find the recipe again, so just winged it.  Made it from memory from way back then, so this will not resemble the original recipe in any way shape or form.

Guest Submission: Es’s Pork Stir-Fry with Baby Bok Choy



Ingredients
1 lb pork tenderloin
3 Tbs soy sauce
1½ Tbs teriyaki marinade
1½ tsp golden brown sugar
1½ tsp maiziena / cornstarch
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Enough VOO (virgin olive oil) to lightly coat the wok
3-4 medium minced cloves of garlic
1-2 Tbs grated fresh ginger
4 medium white button mushrooms, chopped
3 medium heads baby bok choy (wash, cut off the white stalks and keep leaves separate)
½ cup unsalted cashews

 

Method:
Slice the meat in medallions of ±½-1 inch chunks.
Whisk the soy sauce, teriyaki marinade, brown sugar, cornstarch, and freshly ground pepper until the cornstarch and sugar are dissolved.
Add the pork, toss to coat, and marinate for 5-10 minutes. Flip and turn the meat after 5 minutes in the marinade in order to cover both sides.
Heat oil in a large wok (just enough to cover the bottom) until hot. Drain or wipe out the excess oil.
Add the ginger and garlic and stir-fry, till nicely flavored.
Add the pork in a single layer and cook till medium done.
Drip the remainder of the sauce over the meat medallions.
Turn the heat down and stir-fry till the meat is nearly cooked through and keep aside.
Heat some more oil in the wok, add the bok choy stalks, as well as the mushrooms and stir-fry until crisp-tender.
We prefer our greens more crispy, so do not over cook.
Return the pork and add the bok choy leaves and cashews to the wok, and stir-fry until the leaves are wilted and serve immediately.


We served it with sweet glazed butternut. The flavors complimented each other very well.

All the above tweaked, prepared, tried and tested by: Esme Slabs

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Guest Submission: Layers of Grief

About this time last year, I became very aware of a grief that I carried in my soul.  The central source of the grief was a lie about myself that had been engraved on my heart.  For months, I ignored any true feelings and lived my life in a state of denial.  Obviously, I wasn’t ready to work with the grief yet, but I knew that anger was around the corner and was going to be disastrous when it finally hit.

It was early July when the anger arrived, and with it, a list of 45 reasons of why.  Loss and pain in black ink on a lined white page.

Quickly, it became apparent that I needed a project to turn my grief into something productive.  I chose a recipe and got to work.

I measured, folded, smoothed, chilled.  Layer after layer.  Butter, dough, butter, dough.  Emotions escaped as I pounded and rolled cold pastry into a rectangle, wider and wider, my bamboo tapered rolling pin leaving rounded impressions on the dough as I transferred sad thought after sad thought to the dough mat.

Triangles of dough were carefully rolled, tucked within themselves, and baked until they were golden brown.  Once cooled, my fingers dug into their crust, breaking the glossy exterior into a million shards.  Exactly the way I felt.

-Anonymous

Sandwich Love

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Bread hot from the oven, steaming with heat and perfuming the kitchen with its smell

Crisp lettuce leaves crunching between my fingers, shredding down to size

Meat and cheese, sliced thin as paper, placed with care between mayo and mustard

A dash of pepper on tomato makes the plate almost complete

Don’t forget to add the bacon

-Anonymous

Guest Submission: Es’s Vegan Orzo and Vegetable Salad


Firstly, I would like to take this opportunity to thank Michael from The Ink Owl for the incredible wonderful opportunity to be a Guest on his blog.  This is a huge honor and I hope you will enjoy the variety of dishes I am about to share.

I am Esmé (a foodie) and my blog consists of a compilation of home-made tried and tested recipes. Please visit, and if you like follow my Blog @ The Recipe Hunter!  How about joining and sharing your very own home-made tried and tested recipes with my Group on Facebook @ The Recipe Hunter (Cook & Enjoy).  More social links at the end of this post.


Es’s Vegan Orzo and Vegetable Salad

Simple roasted vegetables are tossed with orzo for a wonderful Thanksgiving Salad


Ingredients:
No measurements will be provided here; it will all depend on how many people you wish to feed.

Ingredients:
1½ cup Orzo
Vegetable Broth

Cook Orzo according to package directions.
Fry the following vegetables one by one in Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO) and add to the orzo and mix.

Vegetables
Sliced Mushrooms
Chopped Red, Yellow, and Orange Peppers
Asparagus
Chopped spring onions
Mixed frozen vegetables of your choice

Add some
Pine Nuts
Fresh or roasted pepitas (Pumpkin seeds)
Capers
In fact, you can add whatever you have available. That’s what I usually do.
Chill the salad and mix with the dressing just before serving, and enjoy.

For the Dressing:
Follow link for recipe: Es’s Vegan Aquafaba (Chickpea Liquid) Mayo/Sauce

Have you ever used Chickpea Liquid (Aquafaba) to make Vegan Mayo/Sauce? Well I have!!

——————————————

Author bio:

I am originally from South Africa, but in Vancouver, Canada for the past 20 years
2. What started your blog? (Why do you like to write?)

I love to share my passion to cook, bake and experiment in the kitchen. This is my way of relaxing after a long and hard week in the office, and if you wish to call it my ‘retail therapy’, so please join me on this day to day journey, which I just ♥
If you love to cook, you will love this blog, and everyone is welcome to share and ‘hunt’for recipes as well as stories from many wonderful fellow bloggers which they so graciously share with us.

If you need more information, please see my blog here.

3. What is your motto for your writing?
My Motto: Sharing is Caring, and I would love to share home-made tried and tested recipes with my followers, readers around the world, and have to enjoy preparing simple and delicious meals for family and friends.

Last day Announced for Guest Submissions, November on the InkOwl

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So the holiday took a bit of a turn with getting all of this blogging stuff together, forgive the abrupt end to October on the InkOwl. All of your comments and likes were appreciated! Hopefully, I was able to thrill a few of you. One day I’ll finish sharing scary stories from my own life.

But now November! I will be out for the month participating in National Novel Writing Month and will only be featuring guest posts that have been submitted to me. That being said, I don’t have a lot of posts to feature so I am moving the deadline to accept submissions to the end of this week, so November 5th.

Here are the official guidelines to follow:

Submissions must be about food. They can be any genre of writing as well.
Entries must contain no less than 50 words, no more than 1700 words.
Photos are a must, even if they are taken from the internet (please give credit).

Please list your website or blog so I can give you credit for your work and answer these three question for your author bio:
1. Where are you from?
2. What started you writing? (Why do you like to write?)
3. What is your dream for your writing?

*Pictures of yourself for the author bio are encouraged.*
**Pictures and content submitted with graphic language, violence and/or pornographic nature will not be accepted**
***Please give credit where it is due, I do not accept copyrighted work***

Send submissions to Michael.erickson512@gmail.com no later than November 1st.
I love forward to your submissions! Feel free to share, reblog, or ping this post as much as you can! Thank you!

I look forward to your submissions!
-M. E. InkOwl

On The Road

The road stretched before our car, thumping under all four tires. All around us desert and mountains stretched for miles.

“Nothing. Absolutely nothing.” I thought and loved it. This was my favorite part of our family road trip. It meant that we had finally left our home state and were now plunging headlong into a new adventure.

“Honey,” my mother said from the front seat to my father, “Pay attention to the road, you’re drifting.”

I smiled as my father nodded and pointed the front of his hat to the windshield. He loved this part of the journey as well, I could tell. The car always wandered between the white broken lines on the road.

My two siblings slept, their bodies fidgeting with dreams. I sighed and looked out the window again. We were traveling up the pass, and hills were transforming into mountains.

And that was when it happened. The rumble of an engine shifting gears from behind. It was a comforting sound, one that I had been listening to the entire trip. From behind us, an engine roared and a rusted bumper came into my view.  The car swayed to the right shoulder and mom cried out.

“Richard! Pay attention! You’re going to get us killed!”

We all jumped in our seats and I almost looked away from the passing truck. It was covered in dust, it’s paint job having long since rusted out. Stained windows reflected bug smears and even more dirt. But for a moment the sun disappeared behind the roof of the cab.

I stopped squinting and looked into through the window. An aged man gripped a slightly bent steering wheel. A cigarette was clamped firmly between gnarled lips. He was bawled, with skin the same dusty worn color as his truck. He stared resolutely out the windshield ignoring our car.

Next to him sat a younger person. I could tell because they were shorter and had smooth white skin. Bib overalls hung loose, over skinny shoulders that sat hunched down in their seat. I felt a chill run to my bones as I watched a ragged towel bounce over the child’s head.

It wasn’t right. The cloth laid over the kid’s face as if hiding the child from view. I only saw the pair for a total of five seconds, while my mother continued to scold my father. But time stopped for me. I saw a rigid back, etched with terror. The kid sat stalks still, unmoved by car nor bumpy road.

I knew, deep in my heart this was wrong, it was all wrong. The light from the late afternoon sun wasn’t even on the kids face, so why would they need it to be covered.

I opened my mouth to say something, but the engine of the truck revved even more and before I could get anything out the truck was gone down the road.

Our car was slowing down. Broken from the trance I looked around and realized we were pulling off to a rest top. Ahead of us, the old truck disappeared into the mountains.

-M.E. InkOwl

Death By Anticipation

“I’m gonna give you till the count of three.” The man screamed, spittle flying out of his mouth. His eyes were bloodshot, beard covered in spit, vomit, and heaven only knows what else. Beyond us, sand drifted in the morning light kicked up by the revving truck before us.

“What have we done?” One of us asks, as calmly as possible.

Expletives fly from his mouth as it twists with rage.

We’re going to die.” I thought, feeling my feet go numb.

“You stole my ATV! You stole it! I know it! And now you all are going to pay.” He waved the gun in our faces, black muzzle glinting before our noses.

He pointed the gun to the side of the dirt road, motioning us over, “Now line up over there! Now! Don’t ask questions just do it!”

I’m never going to see my family again.” Was all my mind could think.

We stepped over to the sagebrush covered hill.

“Honey,” said a woman’s voice from the cab of the truck, “I think you have the wrong guys, they’re just kids.”

“Shut up, woman. I know what I’m doing.” The man screamed. He stepped closer, a waft of alcohol blew from his twisting mouth.

“What is this guy on? He’s chewing up the inside of his mouth.” Even as I thought this he spit to the side, blood spattering the sand at our feet.

The man squared his shoulders, and spoke with in a dangerous whisper, “Alright.  You’re all going to tell me where you’ve been tonight, and then you’re going to show me the bottom of your feet.”

“What?’ Another of asked, bewildered and terrified.

“Show me your feet!” He screamed, stepping right up to us, all but shoving the barrel of his handgun up our noses.

We’re dead.” I thought, lifting my foot towards the man.

A look came over his face, making us pull back as one.

Then he screamed.

-M.E. InkOwl

By The River Running

Don’t you understand honey?” She said, trying to sound helpful. “They’re taking it all down all of it all the trees the river the forest, they’re already bulldozing it down.”

I ran, bushes and leaves slapping against my legs. A bird took flight from its hiding place, calling out with an ugly voice.

Raven.” My mind stated as the black wings disappeared beyond a stand of trees.

Behind me my grandmother’s apartment shrank behind the usual hedges of scrub oak and lilac.

I ran on, heedless of the noise and destruction I was causing. The trail wound it’s way up and over a small hill. For a flash I could see the green tops of trees leading off into the distance, ending in a long line of roofs

My thoughts returned back to what my mother had said, “It doesn’t matter anyway, Michael, Grandma is moving somewhere else, a better place.”

“But what’s better than this place?” I growled between taught jaws. It wasn’t fair. None of it was, especially for grandma. She was different, always had been. But now they were taking her away from this, from her home where it was safe to be different.

I continued on, now slowing my pace, daring someone to catch up with me pull me back inside.

As trees passed me I again heard my parent’s voice. “Now Michael it’s alright, this move will be good for grandma, they’ll take good care of her.”

Ahead of me some vines hung low over the path and I swung out at them, dashing greenery aside.

Why move from here? It’s perfect for Grandma. She doesn’t-” Thoughts suddenly derailedmy steps faultered and I tripped, almost sprawling head first into a bubbling stream.

I stopped for a moment, realizing just how deeply I was breathing, ears burning in my eyes. But the silence was too complete, my ears rang from it.

Something was not right. I stopped and scanned the forest where I stood. Large trees spread wide overhead, while the elevated path I stood on made up the river bank. Everything was normal, everything except. . .

Something swung in the gentle breeze, lazily circling in and out of view. It looked like a woven basket.

I walked up to the grizzled bush and pulled vines away. Something large swung out toward me and I leapt back in shock.

“What the?” I said, feeling my stomach twist. A woven form half the size of my body hung from a tree. Vines wrapped around most of its twisted limbs securing it to one side.

“Are you some kind of voodoo doll?” I asked, realizing that if a reply came from the woven form I’d most likely need to change my pants. There was no answer, just the sound of vines rubbing on branch. My attention focused beyond the vine. My eyes went wide. Nothing could prepare me for what I saw beyond the swinging form.

A small clearing sat to one side of the stream and path. A makeshift leanto sat between two trees, various objects and trash lay scattered about the space.

A fowl smell of rotten trash filled the air, making my neck tingle.

Maybe it’s a homeless person’s home.” I thought, trying not to panic.

Wind blew through the clearing picking up leave and trash, and throwing fetted air into my face.

I coughed and gagged, covering my nose and looked around. That what when I saw it, saw them. Dozens and dozens of twisted woven forms hung from the trees, swinging the wind. Their knobbled forms tossing this way that, faceless heads turning to look at an intruder, at me.

Dread fell upon me like thick oil. I did the only thing I could, I ran.

And I never looked back.

-M.E. InkOwl

Sinister Countdown Finale

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I had planned on posting several fictional stories and poems, but some unforeseen events have altered my plans. Please, bear with me as I share so much more than fictional accounts of sinister proportions. I intend to thrill you, horrify you, and terrorize you with true stories from my own life that haunt me to this day. Some will be gory, others bizarre, and still other’s will bend your perception of reality as you see it. Now allow me to pull you into my mind’s eye. Sit back, do anything but relax, and prepare yourselves for this year’s Sinister Countdown Finale.

-M.E. InkOwl