we did African again

One week after we went to Africa, we did it again.

(Not really, but it’s cute to say it that way.)

Anyway, I made another African Stew–this one with winter squash and chickpeas.



In short, Andrew and I both preferred the first one (with the sweet potatoes and red beans), although Andrew said he’d rather have chickpeas than red beans.  I can make that swap, I suppose…



I also tried out a recipe for wheat pita bread.  It definitely puffed, just like it said it would, although the top layer was paper-thin.  Not sure how to make it more half and half…  Served with dates.



And citrus salad with mint.



It’s been a veritable picture-hanging spree around here, lately!  With every piece that goes up on a wall, I feel a bit more moved-in 🙂

This baby was moved from the laundry room to the pantry, where we both think it looks much better:



This Roycroft mirror was a birthday gift from the Layers last year, and we just never got around to figuring out the best spot for it until recently.  It’s in the little hallway that leads to the 4th bedroom, and I like that you can see it as soon as you round the corner at the top of the stairs.




Check out the details!  And I love that you can see the Penn State photos in its’ reflection.



This is that craft project I made with a friend a week or so ago:



We attached chicken wire to empty frames, then spray-painted them and decoupaged little clothespins.  It’s hanging in the downstairs half-bath.




Finished look with cards:



I even found another white-framed cork board for my upstairs office nook:



Since I’ve been in school, I’ve resorted to creating scotch-taped ‘clusters’ of papers on the walls near my desk.  First, it was the kitchen in our hotel room at the Staybridge, then the paneled room in the rental house, and then (what is now the 4th bedroom) here before I created this nook.  High time to get another cork board, huh?!  It’s currently displaying the cycling and aerobics class schedules for the YMCA, my hand-written workout schedule and some directions to log into the new co-op blog website.  And my periodic table of elements–it’s more sentimental than necessary now, but it still makes me smile.

Most of those items were finished in one evening; why can’t all the other projects we do be so brief yet bring so much relief?!

to Africa and back

Awhile ago (as in, I don’t even remember how long ago), my friend Regina (at least I think that’s who it was) recommended a recipe for a sweet potato stew to me.  I don’t even remember why she thought to tell me about it.  I’m just all sorts of forgetful these days, aren’t I?!

Anyway, the recipe for African Sweet Potato Stew with Red Beans has been in my to-make pile for awhile, and I thought it would be perfect for Meatless Monday this week.  (Except that we ate it tonight, which is indeed Tuesday, but whatever.  It’s the thought that counts.)

I’ll admit, I didn’t have super high hopes that Andrew would like this dish.  It has beans in it, after all.

So you can imagine my surprise when he announced that, in fact, he did like it.  According to him, the red beans “didn’t ruin in by making it too dry.”

In fact, “You can’t even taste them,” he said.  Whatever works, right?


To go with it, I made Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day’s ‘Msemmen,’ which is an Algerian flatbread.  I thought it would go nicely.  It was super easy and absolutely amazing.  Basically, you make their basic dough recipe, roll it out, spread a spice mixture on it as if it were pizza, then you roll the dough into a log and swirl it into a cinnamon roll shape before letting it rest for 20 minutes.  After that, you simply roll it out again, which causes the spice mixture to create layers in the dough.  Then, pan-fry in a skillet.





The stew is slightly sweet with just a bit of a kick.  Serve with lime wedges and chopped peanuts!