04 December 2007

All I really want

And all I really want is some patience
A way to calm the angry voice

So, did I do what I asked everyone else to do today?

Yes. I was nice. At least twice. In fact, I was so nice to the checker in the grocery store, she wished me happy holidays twice.

Then I completely undid the good by losing my temper with an idiot on a cell phone.

I have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to bad driving, and that tolerance level zooms into the negative numbers when I see this stuff in my neighborhood.

We do not have sidewalks on our street. This can make walking through here a challenge when visitors drive around with a bat-out-of-hell mentality. This afternoon, I was walking the kids home from school and some stupid female I didn't recognize came tearing around a corner and narrowly missed hitting the son. Not only was she driving on the wrong side of the road, she was, of course, busily yapping on the phone.

I went ballistic.

And all I really want is to talk recipes.

This is an absolute show-stopper of a dip, and is excellent for all those holiday parties where you have to bring something. In fact, I make it for the neighborhood progressive dinner every year, and it's gone in about five minutes. For parties, I double the recipe and serve it with water crackers.

Artichoke Dip

Serves 8-10

1 tsp butter
2 c. grated mozzarella
1 c. grated parmesan cheese
1 c. mayonnaise
4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 14-oz. cans water-packed artichoke hearts, drained and chopped.

Grease a medium glass or ceramic baking dish with butter and set aside. Mix mozzarella, parmesan, mayonnaise, and garlic together in a medium bowl, then stir in artichokes. Transfer to prepared dish, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat over to 325. Uncover dip and bake until edges begin to brown, about 30 minutes. Stir, then continue baking for 30-40 minutes more. Set aside to let cool briefly. Serve warm.

This recipe was originally published in Saveur magazine (December 2003, p. 85), but I couldn't find the recipe on their website. So, I hope they'll forgive me for sharing it here.

Give back:

Have you ever given blood? I was just about to the 2 gallon mark (you give 1 pint each time you donate) when I was diagnosed with heart disease in my early 20s and told that I could no longer donate. Giving blood takes a little bit of time, but generally less than an hour, and it's about the easiest way you personally can help to save someone's life.

I donated the first time when I was 17, and it was for a friend of mine who'd been severely injured in a car accident.

Does it hurt? Only when they stick the needle in and that's pretty minimal--this coming from someone who really, really, really hates needles.

Check out the Red Cross to find out what you can do to give the gift of life. Sappy as it sounds, someone out there will really thank you.

Go listen to some good music: "All I Really Want" from the album Jagged Little Pill by Alanis Morisette.

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