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About Me:

My name is Olivia and I am a senior at Butler University. I spend most of my time in Lilly Hall as a BFA Dance Performance major. When not in rehearsal or ballet class, I write papers for my English Literature second major. In my super-abundant, never-lacking, this-is-highly-sarcastic spare time, I attempt to cook in my apartment kitchen, watch Youtube videos of ballet, knit sweaters that never seem to come to an end, and read books both silly and serious. If I could take any class at Butler just for kicks, I'd go for DiffyQ.

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Archive: February 2011

Cooking Adventures II

The string of cooking successes continues with dinner! I talked last time about lunches being leftovers or sandwiches, which is very true. I guess I should admit, however, that I’m often just not hungry for lunch after having such a huge breakfast. Dinner tends to come early on these days, leaving plenty of time afterward for dessert!


1. Salad with homemade dressing roughly obtained from the Moosewood Collective cookbook my parents gave me for my birthday this past year. I had been mixing my dressings with the end of a long wooden spoon in the largest plastic cup I could find. This time, I used an empty (and clean) yogurt container to shake up the dressing.

However! I got a drink mixer at Target which I intend to use for mixing dressings, since it is construction for the purpose of being shaken without spraying garlic and milk everywhere. I’ll let you know how that turns out.

salad with homemade dressing

2. Thai Sweet Potato Stew. My dad made this sometime last year, and I periodically crave it now. It’s made with sweet potato, onion, spices, coconut milk, and other things I can’t recall just now. Serve over rice while watching a Miyazaki movie with a friend. (This was before classes began, obviously.) Yum.

Thai Sweet Potato Stew

3. Here’s the mission. You have a can of refried beans you accidentally started to open because you thought it was black beans. (Actually, not you, but that’s a minor detail. :) Smile, friend!) You must use these refried beans now. And the leftover tofu from a tofu dish. And using some of the lettuce and the lone onion would be nice as well.

What do you do? Throw onion, garlic, tomato, tofu, and a boat-load of spices in the skillet. Heat the beans and add cheese. Serve with a pile of lettuce. Use either Italian dressing or salsa verde, and TA-DA! You have yourself a burrito-like pile of ingredients that taste shockingly delicious.

Seriously, that tofu thing was bamf. I think it was the high-volume of onions.

Tofu thing

4. Taste roommate’s chili. Decide it’s the best thing ever. Crave chili for months. Stockpile every different type of bean under the sun. Finally, finally make chili. I’m still eating the leftovers, and they are pretty much the bees’ knees, except, you know, more substantial and heartier.

Chili in said roommate's (AKA, The Chili Guru's) enormous Dutch Oven

The preparation options: plain, or with salsa verde and cheese

Dessert to follow! Stay warm in this snow storm!

Cooking Adventures I

This huge snow storm has done wonders for my blogging schedule, and now I finally get to brag about the collection of pictures I’ve acquired since the beginning of the spring semester two weeks ago.

Sometimes my cooking adventures turn out to be very, very wrong. Often they are almost right and thus edible to one in a generous frame of mind or in a fit of extreme hunger. Occasionally, however, they have been exceedingly successful–as in “exceeds expectations”–as in I would get “E” were I taking a test at Hogwarts–as in they were delicious.

So I’m going to brag a little as I share my cooking adventures with you.


1. Egg, onion, spinach, omelette. Never fear, I only ate half. The rest I’ve squirreled away for tomorrow morning. I added rosemary, thyme, garlic, pepper, and a bunch of basil as well. Yum.

Spinach/egg/onion thing

2. Banana pancakes! These were delicious. I found a questionable banana at the bottom of my backpack at the end of the school day on Friday. (It was only there for one day, don’t worry.) I just call it “questionable” because it had turned, by some miracle of chemistry, entirely brown. And therefore it was perfect for a Saturday morning pancake party. We put a smidge of Nutella on top too. Yum.

Action shot!

3. Caramelize onion. Add garlic. Add pepper, spices, and eggs. Then when it can’t get any better, put pepperoni on top. And cheese! Serve with toast and tea and maybe a friend or two.


I’m kind of on a pepperoni kick right now, thanks to my youngest sister. I have been putting pepperoni on my sandwiches, having a slice or two for a snack, having a slice or two while I’m cooking breakfast, having a slice or two for dessert. Thank you, sister.

Right, I want to assure the gentle reader that I did not consume all of the above at once. This was more than one breakfast. So there.

Dinner and dessert will follow. My lunches tend to be leftovers or sandwiches, and therefore will not be covered in this series.

The Butler icicle

As Andre and Steph have blogged about already, the Butler campus has  been coated with ice. Yesterday we got the news that classes were canceled today, and around three o’clock today my cell phone rang–no classes tomorrow!

The above picture doesn’t look overly impressive, but that’s mostly solid ice. Last night came the freezing rain, and it precipitated intermittently throughout the day. Tonight it is supposed to snow. Even Chicago public schools are having a snow day tomorrow. My goodness.

All this extreme weather does have me worried, however. There were the Australian floods and the soon-to-be Australian cyclone Yasi. There were Brazilian landslides and mudslides. And now this.

Nevertheless, today was fairly productive. I finished a novel for my Literature of the American Renaissance class. I wrote a short, short response to it. I edited a two page response to a poem for my Romanticism class. And I worked on my Butler Summer Institute proposal for almost four hours straight.

Afterwards, I hung out with a friend and watched Doctor Who. It was a good day, if a bit miserable outside. If you are in the Midwest, bundle up!

Scarves over noses + hats over ears = warm + looking a bit odd.