Musical Beds, Croquettas & Stone Crabs

I’ve stopped sleeping with my husband.

Not in the biblical sense, but in the physical sense in that I’m no longer in the same bed in our bedroom. The reason? His incredibly loud snoring has been waking me up out of a deep slumber. I value my sleep and normally sleep quite well, but when the sound of an explosive snort erupts on the pillow beside me, I wake up. Many times. Sometimes, I can’t go back to sleep, resulting in feeling crappy the next day.

So, I started sleeping in another bedroom. Luckily, with all the kids gone, there are many beds to choose from. I started to agree with my friend Chrissy, who thinks separate bedrooms are the key to a happy marriage.

What’s with the mouthwash?

I asked.

There was a large bottle of Scope on the kitchen counter.

I heard mint mouthwash prevents snoring.

said Zeke.

God forbid he actually visit a doctor to get a diagnosis. This remedy sounded like some Witch Doctor’s Voodoo or an Old Wives Tale, but I realize this is probably offensive to witch doctors and old wives, of which I am one.

He gargled with the mouthwash that night and, miracle of miracles! It worked. No snoring, or at least not of the decibel that wakes me out of a sound sleep. So problem solved.

Monday was Columbus Day, so Phoenix had no school and I got to babysit him. I tried not to take it personally when he started crying when he saw me, because he knew that meant his Mom was leaving.

We played with his toys, I fed him yogurt and Goldfish crackers, took him outside to my mediation garden and when he got cranky, I laid him down. He fell asleep, but woke up when I started my Big Band class on my laptop, via Zoom. It’s an UM Osher Class (55+) and it was the last day of the Swinging on a Star.

My little Phoenix, asleep.
Notice how he looks at me right before he tries to start using my computer. Sneaky.

I made easy Steak Fajitas for dinner that night with leftover steak, which I marinated in lime juice, garlic and cumin. I sauteed bell peppers, onions and heated flour tortillas in a cast iron skillet and kept them warm in the oven. Fajitas are such an easy dinner with leftover pork or steak. I served them sour cream, corn and refried beans.

I love Fall, not least of all for its delicious dishes and made a very Fall-ish dinner Tuesday of Roast Pork with thyme and rosemary (James Beard recipe), Roasted Brussel Sprouts, Sauteed Mushrooms and Mashed Sweet Potatoes. I read an article about how to eat healthier and it said to boil sweet potatoes, vs. roasting them, to get the most health benefits.

On Wednesday, I picked up Wyatt from school and we made Halloween cookies Zeke had picked up at Publix to decorate called Bakery Bling. It was a fun kit and our cookies turned out cute, although not as picture perfect as the ones on the package. We were going to watch a “scary movie” after that, but alas, his Mom came to pick him up.

I found both pairs of my glasses! My aviators were in a case by the front door. It would’ve made sense to look there but it’s not my case (a friend’s) that I need to return. The other pair were just in my purse. Not-so-interesting mystery solved.

After tennis Wednesday, I had lunch at Panera in the Falls. I really like Panera for a quick and easy meal, especially if I’m shopping at Marshalls and Old Navy, which I was (looking for a turtleneck for my Velma costume). I got the seasonal Butternut Squash Soup with the Asian Chicken Salad and both were good. I appreciate that Panera lists the calorie counts on the menu items, so I know what I’m getting myself into (although I did get the bread!)

Thursday I had a delightful surprise when faithful Foodie in Miami reader and friend Leonor Liebler dropped off a sampling of Croquettas from Tinta Y Cafe, winner of the #1 croquetta in Miami by Hungry Post. Each croquetta was a different color.

The spinach was green, the cod white and the ham, pink and fat. I loved all of them, but my favorite was the spinach- like creamed spinach encased in a crunchy croqetta. The ham was creamy, meaty and smoky and the cod had a delicate fish flavor- not too strong. All of them were wonderful. I also appreciate they came in a paper, not styrofoam, container.

Thursday, my dinner was Sauteed Chicken Livers with Onions, fluffy Scrambled Eggs and toast. You’re either a chicken liver lover (say that three times fast) or a hater and I actually love them (especially in Rumaki). I was craving something high in iron, so it hit the spot. The scrambled eggs were a Thomas Keller recipe and delicious. You strain the eggs through a sieve before cooking and this simple trick, really makes the eggs smooth and silky.

Zeke surprised me the next day with Croquettas he’d read about online. They were from Caja Caliente, a new Cuban/Mexican restaurant in the old Eating House space. When I checked out their menu, I found out that the ham croquettas are actually from Islas Canarias, voted the #2 croquetta by Hungry Post.

He wanted to get the crabmeat (Jaiba) croquetta, but they were out, so he got Ham and Spicy Goat Cheese. The ham was good (traditional), but the spicy goat cheese, in disc-shape instead of the traditional shape, were outstanding. Creamy with a kick of spice from jalapeno chunks. Thanks to Leonor and Zeke for letting me sample the top Miami croquettas! You made my (croquetta) dreams come true.

Stone Crab season started this Saturday, October 15th! Stone Crab traps are allowed to be put in the water 10 days prior and pulled on the 15th, so we went to Key Largo Fisheries that morning to see if they’d gotten any in yet. They hadn’t, but said to come back that afternoon.

We watched the UM game (we won!), had Hot Dogs, Baked Beans and Coleslaw for lunch. On a 4th of July Instagram post, I read the best way to cook hot dogs is to boil them, so that’s what I did, in beer, the way Lum’s restaurant used to do. Zeke picked up the beans and coleslaw from Mike’s Bar-B-Que truck in Key Largo and both were very good.

Zeke went back to Key Largo Fisheries around 4 and Eureka! They had Stone Crabs! Happy dance. He got 2 pounds of large and that was our dinner Saturday night. We served it with Joe’s Tomatoes, coleslaw and sweet and regular baked potatoes. Delicious!

We watched Blonde on Netflix. It’s the fictionalized account of Marilyn Monroe, based on a book by Joyce Carol Oates. I didn’t care for it- too dark, slow and confusing. It also seemed like it was desperately trying to be “artsy”, but just came off as weird. The actress who played Marilyn however- Cuban-born Ana de Amas- was amazing. She really looked like Marilyn!

And then… disaster hit! Well, not really, but I got a stomach bug which has kept me bed-ridden for two days. This time it was Zeke, not me, fleeing to another bedroom to sleep. He didn’t want to catch what I got. I can’t blame him.

Being sick sucks. But it also makes me appreciate being healthy and being able to do things I love like gardening, going on walks and eating delicious food! I’ve been existing on bananas and Gatorade for two days and it’s not fun.

Oh well, as my Dad always said: **it happens! The other thing he used to say is when you get your three wishes, make sure your first one is for health, because if you don’t have your health, none of the other stuff matters. True that!

Amarillo by mornin’ Up from San Antone Everything that I got Is just what i’ve got on

I ain’t got a dime But what I’ve got is mine I ain’t rich But Lord I’m free

Amarillo by morning Amarillo’s where I’ll be

George Strait

Up Next: Thomas Keller’s Perfect Scrambled Eggs

Published by gleeguilford

Born and raised in Miami, the daughter of a pilot and stay-at-home Mom, I love food in all forms. My great grandfather opened the first Italian restaurant in Miami in the 20's, The Boathouse on the Miami river. I love exploring my heritage and linking food and recipes to personal stories. I've been published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Food and Love and wrote restaurant reviews and news as the Miami Dining Examiner for three years. I love exploring Miami's latest hot spots, hole in the walls and institutions. I'm always looking for innovative ways to use the plethora of tropical fruits and vegetables South Florida offers, especially from my own garden.

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