Happy Halloween and a belated happy birthday to my kickass mommy!

Our neighborhood takes Halloween very seriously. With herds of costumed kids traipsing from house to house, we all do our part to creep ‘em out with spooky porch decorations.

After helping Henry strew styrofoam skulls and fake cobwebs all over the front of our house this weekend, I barely had time to get ready for another string of hospital nightshifts. So this morning, I made myself useful in the kitchen as soon as I hopped out of bed.

I threw some random frozen animal parts in the defrost bowl in the fridge, made a batch of pressure cooker bone broth, and blitzed a double batch of Magic Mushroom Powder. (The Magic Mushroom Powder recipe’s available on my iPad app. And if you don’t have an iPad, ask a buddy with the app to email it to you. All the recipes in my app are emailable at the touch of a button!).

I’ve found the simplest way to mix the seasoning salt is to pour everything into a jar through a parchment paper funnel and shake it like a Polaroid picture. (Yeah, my pop cultural references date back to my pre-kid days. Sad.)

While I was waiting for the bone broth to finish cooking, I breakfasted on eggs…

…and packed the boys’ lunches. Both of the kids had Halloween parades at their schools, and they were already bouncing off the walls in excitement.

As we were hustling to get out of the house, Lil-O put on a costume (like Lady Gaga, he has more than just one) and horse-danced around the house, Gangnam Style.

We were hoping he’d wear his Psy outfit to preschool today, but at the last minute, he decided that his Batman suit would be more appropriate. (His reasoning: “Batman has a cape, but Psy doesn’t.”) 

While Henry escorted our space alien and superhero to school, I headed off to CrossFit Palo Alto for a special Halloween-themed Tabata workout.

After a fun but exhausting hour, I had to speed over to volunteer at Big-O’s classroom party, and for a moment, I considered just going as a sweaty mom. But then I spied Big-O’s old hamburger costume, and slipped it on. Yep – for Halloween, I’m the pink slime in the middle of a fast food burger.

My favorite part of Halloween? Watching kids werk it at the school parade.

Once I was back home, I made a quick and satisfying lunch of fried chicken gizzards and baby kale. The gizzards were already braised and stored in duck fat, so I just fished them out and seared them in a hot skillet to brown each side.

After I removed the gizzards from the pan, I tossed in a bag of baby kale and wilted them in the remaining duck fat.

Crispy braised gizzards are definitely my favorite nasty bits.


Next time, I’m gonna sous vide or pressure cook them so I can use less duck fat – that stuff ain’t cheap.

Before I caught a few winks in the late afternoon to prepare for my all-night zombie drug dealing shift, Big-O and I pored over two new books I ordered via Amazon. These two dense references are perfect for culinary nerds like us: Modernist Cuisine At Home

…and Cook’s Illustrated new tome, The Science of Good Cooking.

I can’t wait to sink my teeth into these books, but in the meantime, I’m gonna count on my tiny sous chef to give me the Cliffs Notes version.

I couldn’t pry ’em out of his hands anyway.

When I woke up in the evening, the kids were itching to collect bags of candy – and not because they planned on eating their loot. We had struck a deal with the boys: We’ll give you cold, hard CASH in exchange for your sugar bombs. Our kids did the math: Mo’ money, mo’ Legos. And Legos > candy. They were in.

Sidney and Jory came over with Captain America to trick or treat with us, and before heading out for the night, we dined on take out from Sancho’s Taqueria. I ate a house salad with added carne asada, grilled shrimp, and guacamole.

Once our bellies were full, the boys dashed out into the neighborhood to collect their loot.

After a long night of demanding candy from strangers, the boys exchanged their bags for TEN DOLLARS from Henry’s wallet. 

“But I want TEN HUNDRED MILLION dollars,” Lil-O protested. You and me both, kiddo.

Next holiday: Thanksgiving. I am so not ready.

But speaking of Thanksgiving, you can get free shipping on all Spreadshirt T’s TODAY ONLY (11/1/12) with the coupon code: GIVETHANKSSHIP

C’mon. You know you want to sport my mug on your chest.

About Michelle Tam

Hello! My name is Michelle Tam, and I love to eat. I think about food all the time. It borders on obsession. I’ve always loved the sights and smells of the kitchen. My mother was (and is) an excellent cook, and as a kid, I was her little shadow as she prepared supper each night. From her, I gained a deep, abiding love for magically transforming pantry items into mouth-watering family meals.

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