November 2009December 2009 January 2010

12/30 - Illumination

Just for the record, here are our two trees illuminated. We had to wheel out the better camera, the one with shutter and aperture control, to capture the tree light. There's probably a special mode for this on our little camera, but we can never figure out what all those modes are good for.

The cookie tree.

The big tree.

It's another world.

Keywords: christmas

12/23 - Cassoulet for Christmas

This year was a cassoulet year at Casa Kaleberg. (We alternate cassolet and choucroute garnie every other Christmas.) That's a photo of our Christmas cassoulet on the right. Cassoulet, if you've never had it, contains white beans, duck confit, pork loin, ham hocks, pig skin, garlic sausages, andouille and a host of other pork products. It's an amazing dish. Just making the duck confit, that is, duck preserved in its own fat with spices, is a fair production, and it takes several days just to cook and assemble a cassoulet.

We tried to get a shot of the whole cassoulet, but our guests moved in too quickly, so enjoy this action shot.

This year we got our pork from the folks at The Swinery, a butcher shop based in West Seattle. They get their pork from a number of local farmers, and we have to say that the meat is first rate. They didn't blink when we asked for pig's knuckles, and they came through with a first rate piece of pig skin. We tried their Toulouse sausages and were quite impressed. You can see some of them in the photo above. The Swinery is based out in West Seattle, so now we have to explore more of West Seattle, and we have to try out The Swinery's new sandwich shop near Pioneer Square. If you live in Seattle and hear oinking in 2010, that might just be a couple of Kalebergs on the march.

Keywords: christmas, seattle, kale

12/21 - Christmas 2009

December has been a busy month with parties, travel to Seattle and lots of excitement. We've also been decorating Chez Kaleberg and our Christmas trees. Here are a few pictures of our two trees. The big tree is a nine-footer and neatly fills a corner in our living room. The little tree is decorated with cookies, our friends' creations, and is lighted with candles. That's our Christmas party spread to the right. We'll post more pictures when things calm down a bit, most likely around Christmas later this week.

Ready for Christmas

Our tree

The cookie tree

Keywords: christmas, kale

12/16 - More From Seattle

These are just a few more Seattle photos. We had to include the Space Needle. We also have to write a review of Spinasse up on Capital Hill. They have amazing hand cut pasta. We had one dish of little squares served with a rabbit liver sauce that was out of this world, and the wonderful gnocci could have fed an army. The pork cheeks with polenta were tender and tasty. The rabbit excellent, but the surprise was the wonderful almond cake, and we don't even like almond cake. Maybe it was the blackberry sauce and the dollop of foamed olive oil?

The sunset

The Space Needle in context


Keywords: seattle, restaurants

12/11 - Bed, Bath and the Great Beyond

We saw this sign while wandering around Capital Hill in Seattle. For a moment we were sure we had gotten lost somehow and wound up in Fremont.

Keywords: seattle

12/10 - Santa Is Coming To Town

Every year the Port Angeles fire department sends out one of their old trucks, adorned with lights, with Santa on board. You can hear the siren making its way up one block and down another. Then come the lights, the siren getting closer, one of the volunteers handing out candy canes and then, there he is, Santa! We can't resist, and we always give something. It's a great way to get into the spirit of the season.

Keywords: port angeles

12/09 - Return of the Icicles

The icicles along the Spruce Railroad Trail are back. We last noticed them back in March. They are as beautiful as ever, especially with the lake's blue waters behind them.

Keywords: spruce railroad, winter

Yes, we smoked it in the snow.

12/06 - Smoked Steelhead

For the last few weeks Tuna Dan has had steelhead at the Port Angeles Farmers' Market, so that means we've been having smoked steelhead. We use brown sugar, black pepper, kosher salt and coriander seeds for our rub. We don't smoke it long, but that doesn't matter. We usually eat it pretty quickly.

Keywords: farmers' market, food

12/05 - Marymere Falls

This is a good time of year to check out Marymere Falls at Barnes Creek. The valley is cold, and the river is wild. The falls themselves are in full flow.

Keywords: barnes creek, marymere falls

12/04 - Christmas Trees

We started checking for Christmas trees before Thanksgiving. We have a nine and a half foot high ceiling in our living room, so we need to get a tall one. The local Christmas tree places don't order very many trees that tall, so we have to start early and move quickly. Our big competitor seems to be Wilder Honda, but we are hot on their heels. (That's what we get for living in a converted auto showroom.)

Behold, this year's monster. It has an industrial grade stand, forged in Mordor as part of the post-ring orc industry for peace program. We've decked it out with lights. That took a two stage power distribution system with a sub-terminal located about 2/3 of the way up the tree to power the upper strands of LEDs and conventional lights. We needed that ladder to get the spire and upper ornaments in place.

As noted, our tree is a work in progress. We'll keep you posted on our website.

Work in progress

Keywords: christmas

12/03 - Another Tree Down

There's another tree down on the Lake Angeles Trail. This one was quite a piece of lumber. Mind you, this isn't really news. Trees fall in the forest all the time, though quite a few choose late November or early December. There were a few trees down on the Spruce Railroad Trail at Lake Crescent as well, but both trails are still passable.

Keywords: lake angeles, lake crescent, spruce railroad, trails

Mount Baker and the moon

12/02 - Moon Over Mount Baker

This is a photo of Mount Baker taken from the Kaleberg Plateau in our backyard. We were out howling at the full moon.

Keywords: science, art, mount baker, kale

12/01 - The Last Salamander of the Season

This has to be the last salamander of the season. It was an awfully cold day for salamanders when we spotted him on the Spruce Railroad Trail.

Keywords: salamander, spruce railroad

November 2009December 2009 January 2010