Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Trader Joe's coming soon... near me!

Trader Joe’s under construction at 9772 Great Hills Trail Austin, TX 78759


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Rock ‘Em & Sock ‘Em Spring Fling, Roller Derby in Round Rock this Sunday!

This Sunday at 1:30pm the Rockin’ City Rollergirls are hosting their first home bout of the season.  Yours truly will be working the penalty box.  Bring the kids and some chairs to sit inside the rink for up close action!  

I’ve been training with these ladies since August, and lost a bunch of weight from my second pregnancy that just would not go away.  I avoid the gym like the plague, but knew I needed something to stay motivated.  This is it!  Derby is not just physical, it’s good for your mental well-being.  The friends I found through roller derby are all amazing, strong, charismatic, and funny women.  

So what are you waiting for?  Come out and see us this Sunday!


Austin Sports Arena, 3918 Gattis School Road, Round Rock, TX 78664

Tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/575225 


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Nites Out: Korea House (Austin, TX)

Kimchi, Tofu, and Bacon Stir Fry. Surprisingly tasty for the kimchi-inclined! It was enough for two people, or lunch and dinner for myself. They also have just Kimchi and Bacon if you don’t like tofu. The rice is on the side, not fried with the goodies.

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Clara reminds me of my Granny Sylvia. I wish I had video taped her in the kitchen while she was still with us. Granny loved to serve tea and gingersnaps for company and regularly made bread for daily meals. It might not have been for the love of bread but a habit born out of pure necessity for survival during hard times. Are we any better off in 2014?

This video series is a gem. In some small way I feel connected to my maternal ancestors through the cheerful star of the show. I just want to hug Clara!

And now, I want to bake cookies.

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We saw some incredible amounts of rain last month, while this was welcome after the droughts of 2011, the damage was not.  

Folks all along the Onion Creek river system were washed out of homes and rescued from rooftops. The same thing happened in my previous home of Calgary earlier this year.   The rivers become seething live creatures, swallowing everything in their path.

It’s time to rebuild.  Renew.  Refresh.  But everyone needs your help.

Austin Bakes for Austin is here to lend a hand, or cookie, for the cause.  Bakers across town will fire up their ovens for a city-wide bake sale on November 30th.  Save some room after your Thanksgiving feasts for sweet treats, and maybe a few savory ones too.  Your purchase will help a neighbor.  What better way to celebrate Thanksgiving?


Let me tell you how I got involved with Austin Bakes.

It was Labor Day weekend, 2011, we were returning to Round Rock after spending time with the grandparents in Del Rio for my son’s birthday.  As we approached Austin travelling north on IH-35, I saw what looked at first to be a thunderstorm to the east. Then the horrifying scene became clear.  That was a wall of smoke from a huge fire.  I’d never seen anything like it, and my heart sunk.

I wanted to help Bastrop.  Especially after seeing the news coverage.  I cried for people I didn’t even know, would never meet, and would never know that I cared about them.  It was that human connection, some upper echelon of spirituality that zapped me in gear.  I found Kathryn and Austin Bakes.  We met for coffee and I was so excited to be able to do something with my hobby of baking that would help the people I cried for, and prayed for.  A simple act of love, all bundled up in a loaf of bread.  Is it really that simple?  Yes, it can be.  

I don’t think Kathryn, nor the other volunteers, knew how this event would grow.  

Then West, TX happened.  I was drowning in a pool of tears for the firefighters and first responders who lost their lives that day.  During that bake sale, a volunteer firefighter from West appeared at my location in the Round Rock Market.  Holding back tears I thanked him for his service, dedication, and offered condolences for his fallen brothers.  He wouldn’t take a cookie, and only left his thanks for us.  

We can’t fix everything, but we can try to help each other.  Please join me next Saturday, either as a volunteer or supporter, for Austin Bakes for Austin between 10am and 2pm.  I’ll bring the bread, you bring your friends.  


For locations, please visit http://austinbakes.com or make a donation today.  

All funds raised will go to the Austin Disaster Relief Network, to benefit survivors of the late October flooding
that ravaged homes in Austin and Pflugerville. Those who wish to make a gift in advance of the sale may do
so at Austin Bakes for Austin’s secure, online giving page.




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I’m in again to bake for Austin! Join me November 30th for home made goodies, any requests?

Austin Bakes

Get your mixers ready! We’re going to be coming together again, this time to help our Austin neighbors affected by the recent floods. Recent flooding has devastated several neighborhoods in Austin, leaving many of our fellow Austinites homeless.

Recovering these homes and neighborhoods is a huge job. Tons of debris must be removed, homes must be cleaned, gutted and renovated, and in some cases replaced all together. It’s a big job, one that will take a massive cooperative effort to accomplish.

We’re going to be raising funds for Austin Disaster Relief Network, a local organization that has been organizing volunteers, providing financial support, and collecting donations for those affected by the floods. More than 450 families have turned to Austin Disaster Relief Network for help.

Austin Bakes for Austin | Saturday, November 30 | Citywide charity bake sale supporting our Austin neighbors affected by recent floods. | Proceeds to support Austin Disaster Relief Network

The bake sale will be taking place on Saturday, November 30, from 10 am to 2 pm at multiple locations across Austin. We’ll be…

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My friend Jay is famous! Read Bitch Beer’s write up about his beer being brewed at Rogness.

Bitch Beer

It’s been said before by many a brewer that the first time seeing your beer on a store shelf, or on the tap wall of a favorite local pub, is sort of akin to a musician hearing his or her song on the radio for the first time. Jokes about America’s crumbling mainstream music industry aside, imagine how much more surreal that moment would be if you were not a professional brewer at all, but instead, a homebrewer.

That moment will soon come to fruition for Round Rock’s Jay McEvers, who after winning an Austin Zealots pro-am competition with his ESB recipe, won the opportunity to have his beer brewed commercially at Rogness Brewing Company.

Brewed July 18, Jay’s winning recipe will serve as Rogness’s entry into the Great American Beer Festival’s Pro-Am Competition, and will be released in kegs and bottles in late August.

“The whole…

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My blog is 3 years old today.

Has it been that long already? In the grand scheme of blogging, this is merely an infant. I’m not looking for fame or fortune, this is my little space to create and share with whomever cares to devour it. Go ahead and lick your screen, drool on your keyboard, or you could try cooking along with me.

I did bite and bought my domain, http://www.midnitechef.com, I’m not off the WordPress teat just yet. A bit nervous about moving my baby.

Last year I made a goal here to do more giveaways. I love Christmas for the giving aspect, and wish people were nicer all year long, so I spread good cheer when ever possible. Thank you to the various sponsors who handed over goodies! (Psst, by the by, my blender cracked this morning and I need a new one. Just sayin’.)

Final thoughts: I’m still here. Still writing. Usually in the kitchen after dark.

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I received this press release from the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance today and I’m happy to share it with you! Thank you to Rep. Larry Gonzales (R-Round Rock) for supporting HB 970.

Significant Growth in Support for Local Food Movement at Capitol

AUSTIN, Texas – May 23, 2013 – Yesterday, the Texas Senate voted to pass HB 970, the Cottage Foods Bill sponsored by Senator Robert Deuell (R-Greenville); HB 1382, the Farmers Market Bill (also sponsored by Senator Deuell); and HB 1392, the DSHS Better Communications Act sponsored Senator Jane Nelson (R-Grapevine). All three bills will now go to the Governor for signing.

HB 970 expands on last session’s cottage foods law, allowing cottage food producers to make low-risk foods – such as baked goods, jams and jellies, dried herbs, dried fruits and vegetables, granolas, dry mixes, pickles, and coffee/tea mixes – and sell at places such as farmers markets and community events, as well as from home.

“Patrons at farmers markets will soon be able to take advantage of a much wider selection of locally produced foods. It’s all part of preserving our local foods and local culture, while keeping our money in our local economy,” said Kelley Masters, owner of Home Sweet Home Bakery and founder of the grassroots cottage foods movement Texas Baker’s Bill.

HB 1382, known as the “Farmers Market” Bill, establishes clear, reasonable standards for sampling at farmers’ markets and farm stands, replacing the current overly burdensome and confusing regulations. The bill also clarifies the requirements for cooking demonstrations and exempts educational demonstrations from permit fees.

“How wonderful for a farmer to be able to slice a black Spanish radish or a kohlrabi for a shopper to taste just as they do at farmers’ markets across the country. This education is so important in our mission to encourage families to eat more fruits and vegetables while increasing farmers’ revenues,” said Carla Jenkins, manager of the Cedar Park and Mueller Farmers’ Markets.

The DSHS Better Communications Act, HB 1392, directs the DSHS to respond within 30 days to inquiries about how the law applies to a farmer’s or food producer’s specific circumstances, so they can comply in good faith. Farmers and small-scale food producers have faced serious problems in the past because of the inability to determine what is actually required under the regulations.

“DSHS often gives our direct-to-consumer businesses multiple answers to the question of what types of permits we need or, if questioned as to why we fit into specific categories of permits, simply won’t give an answer at all. Family ranches that are providing safe and healthy meats to consumers want to be in compliance – we just need clear direction, and this bill would make that a reality,” said Amy Greer, owner and operator of Winters Family Beef.

Both the cottage foods and farmers’ market bills have been supported by the Farm-to-Table Caucus, founded in the spring of 2012 by Representative Eddie Rodriguez (D-Austin) and Representative Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham), to educate members of the Texas House of Representatives on issues relating to the growing, harvesting and consumption of Texas foods.

The 83rd Texas Legislature marks significant progress in support for the local food movement at the Capitol. In 2011, only three local foods bills were even filed, and only one passed; this session, nine bills were filed and three of them passed. In a session remarkable for the number of bills that died without being voted on, this success rate reflects the legislators’ awareness of their constituents’ support for local foods.

For more information visit http://www.farmandranchfreedom.org/texas-local-food-bills-2013

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About Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance

Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance (FARFA) is a national organization that supports independent family farmers and protects a healthy and productive food supply for American consumers. FARFA promotes common sense policies for local, diversified agricultural systems.

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Hey, I’m in a video!

Most bloggers hide behind screens and keyboards, myself included, however there are rare occasions when the elusive blogger is captured on film.  Or digital camera.  “Film” is so antiquated, don’t you think?  I still use it because I’m a child of the 80’s.

Anyways, my friend Elizabeth at Local Savour managed to get this gal from behind the screen to right in the middle of it.  A little video on her blog features Addie Broyles, chief editor of the Austin Food Blogger Alliance Cookbook chatting with Elizabeth and I.  The AFBA has plenty of copies left for you to purchase for $25, which helps us fulfill our mission as a group.  Procure yours at our upcoming events!

More thank yous and hoorays to our sponsor for the cookbook, Cooking Planit!


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