Showing posts with label walnut. Show all posts
Showing posts with label walnut. Show all posts

Monday, December 23, 2013

Ah-Mazing Banana Walnut Muffins

Hello lovelies and happy holidays!  I hope that you are enjoying a calm and peaceful season and that today brings with in minimal stress and worry.  There are only two days until Christmas (or one, depending on when you're reading this!) and I'm ready for some good food and good company.


Friday, December 13, 2013

Cookie Week - Amazing oatmeal cookies

I thought I would end cookie week with something slightly healthy. We're not talking applesauce and yogurt replacing all the butter.  No no no, it's not that time of year.  Yet.  I'm talking about healthy and delicious additions to these cookies.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Curried Waffle Turkey Sandwiches

You're probably in your final preparations of tomorrow's thanksgiving meal. Personally, I made the big meal last week! That means that I have been feasting on leftover turkey and stuffing for a few days now. That's the big problem when you cook a full bird for just two people. We had lots and lots of leftover turkey.  After two days of reliving the meal, with a plate full of turkey, stuffing and potatoes, the BF and I needed to change things up.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Wilde Away

What does someone do when they've been laid off?  They go on vacation!  No wait, that doesn't seem like the normal thing to do.  Nonetheless, boyfriend and I are not in country right now, we are in Morocco!  In a way it's a good time to go on vacation.  It gets the mind off of the fact that I don't have anywhere to go in the morning.


Boyfriend and I are currently in the Sahara desert, riding camels around.  We got to spend the night in a Berber camp in the desert, where I saw the stars for the first time in a long time.  We have spent the past few days in Marrakech and will be moving on to Agadir tomorrow morning, where we will learn how to surf!  I'm very excited and totally frightened for my life.  The ocean is scary and I'm hoping we're surfing little baby waves.  On giant surf boards.  While wearing floaties.


Until I come back, enjoy these uh-mazing strawberry bars.  I made them just before we left, you know, in all my unemployed free time.  I really enjoyed them hot with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream.  For breakfast.  Don't judge.

Disclaimer: OXO was nice enough to send me some fun fruit-related products as a part of their blogger outreach program, including the strawberry huller you see in the first image.  I used the huller to remove the hulls of the strawberries.  You can use a paring knife just as well, I like tools.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

A Wilde Half Marathon

This weekend, all of my weeks of training culminated in my first half marathon!  It was six weeks ago that I decided to sign up for and seriously train for 13.1 miles through Central Park.  I have always wanted to complete a half marathon.  I realized that I would never train for it, unless I made the commitment and signed up for a race.  It was paying that entry fee that made me stick to the training schedule. 


Boyfriend and I woke up at 6:00 am, Sunday morning, and got dressed in our finest running gear.  Boyfriend was not officially signed up for the race, as it was a ladies only half marathon, but he planned to run along with me as long as he could.  I loaded up my running belt with Clif bloks and lip balm and tossed extra clothes and water in my tagged baggage.  We headed off into the sunrise toward New York City.


You want to head into the city?  There really isn't any traffic at 6:30 on a Sunday morning.  You might be a bit early for brunch though.  We parked our car around 72nd st (right near the finish line of the race) and walked into the park with hundreds of other ladies, already wearing their running bibs.  By 8:00am BF was waiting at mile 1 for me and I was waiting at the starting line, nervous energy coursing through my body.

When my seed corral was finally at the start line, all 1,000 women were packed tightly together.  After I crossed the starting line I was ready to go.  The first mile I spent on the outer edge of the course, passing everyone in my corral.  Apparently I underestimated my running pace at 9:40/mile, after my six weeks of training I was running closer to 8:20/mile.  I spent the majority of the race passing everyone in front of me, it felt good.


BF met up with me at mile 1 and kept up until his shoes came untied around mile 4.  I was on my own, with 10,000 women, running the Central Park loop.  The loop is 6 miles around, which meant I would be making two full loops and one mile of a third.  I knew that once I passed the 6-mile marker, I would be much happier the next time around.


And I certainly was.  I was so thrilled that I reached up and tapped the mile marker, only 1.1 miles left to run.  Gradually I increased my pace until I was at a full out sprint to cross the finish line at 1 hour 55 minutes, five minutes shy of my two hour goal.  Do I think I could do better?  Yes.  Do I plan to run more half marathons?  You bet.

Finally, my heart goes out to those that have been affected by the tragic events at the Boston marathon yesterday.  It's unbelievable what occurred and so surreal that something like this could happen.  I have several friends that were running in the marathon this year and thankfully have heard from all of them.  Here's hoping for a swift recovery for those injured yesterday as well as the city of Boston.


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Fudgy Waffles

Normally my cooking is driven by a story or experience, this week I am letting my cooking create an experience.  Here's the background...

For those of you who don't know, there exists a complex network of people whose job it is to get the right products on the shelf of your favorite grocery store.  One of those people is Boyfriend.  To explain to you what he does would probably take a whole post to itself.  Simply put - He works with the brands to get their product on the store shelves and make sure they sell to people like us.


As we enter a new phase in our lives, buying a house and setting roots, Boyfriend is looking for a new job.  He found a job at Chobani Greek Yogurt that he thinks would be the perfect fit (and seriously, I'm all for more CHO in the house!).

Never content to go the traditional route, he asked me to help out (with my cooking talents) to help get him an interview.  Over the next few days, I will be posting some delicious meals we prepared (yes, we!) using Chobani.  Let's all band together and help Boyfriend and Chobani get together!


Then make some waffles, they are delicious.  I'd recommend eating them for breakfast AND dessert.  Afraid of baking?  You can totally do this, Boyfriend made these waffles!  I just gave him the recipe and told him to excessively spray down the waffle iron with cooking oil.

If you feel so inclined, head over to twitter and help boyfriend out!  Just copy and paste this tweet and hopefully he'll be on his way to his dream job and we'll be buying our dream co-op in Brooklyn!

If backing @PitCHObani for Category Mgr-SoHo means more @WildeKitchen @Chobani recipes - I'm In! #InterviewOverYogurt


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Cavatappi Pasta with Sausage and Butternut Squash

Winter has finally struck the New York City area!  I knew this was coming, we can't go a full year without a week or two of frigid temperatures.  I'm just going to say that I would have been perfectly fine if the temperature never dropped below freezing. 

I know my mom is reading this and saying "But you grew up in Buffalo!"  Yes I did.  I also went to grad school in Wisconsin and spent a year living in Colorado.  Yet, I moved to the coast and have since thawed.  No longer do I want to deal with minus twenty wind chills and three feet of snow on my car.  I no longer own a winter coat that resembles a down comforter with sleeves.  I don't want to wear two pairs of pants while I wait for the train to work.  If there were jobs for chemists in Florida, I would be there in a second!


January is almost at it's end and February in the Mid-Altantic region is a smattering of warm and cold days.  I just have to make it through two weeks of wind chill.  There is only one problem with these cold days.  Boyfriend and I are house hunting.

That's right, we are getting ready to put down some roots and stop paying the ridiculous rent on our current apartment.  It's exciting, overwhelming and scary all at once.  Our first major problem, we're not set on a location yet.  It's not as simple as, do we live in this neighborhood or the one next to it?  Our question is - Do we live in New York or New Jersey?


There are a million factors to take into account.  Boyfriend and I work in two different states, he drives, I commute via train.  New Jersey has high property taxes yet New York has those darned city taxes.  Brooklyn is so hip and cool, Jersey city is... well, I have no idea what Jersey city has to offer.  I've only been there a few times!

So, see all the issues we have to deal with!  Add in the fact that it's chilly out and we are spending our Sundays trekking all over the two cities looking at open houses, you've got two very chilly individuals.  Luckily we have a few months before we have to leave our current apartment, the weather can warm up before we have to move. 

I'll just be a little crazy for the next few months, what with the stalking the NYtimes real estate page for new listings.  During that time I plan on making lots of dinners like this.  Ones that make a ton of leftovers! 

Anyone out there recently buy a house and have some tips and tricks for us?  While Boyfriend has previously bought a condo in Buffalo, this will be our first place together and my first purchase (Hello Property Virgin!).  So much to do, will we ever find a place?

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Why Bother? 2012 - Nut Butters

With only a few Why Bother? challenges remaining, I think I have found my favorite.  Nut Butters!  I don't know why I put this challenge so far into the year.  It may have had something to do with a lack of fresh produce?  I have no idea.  Perhaps I thought I could use said nut butters in the upcoming holiday cookies?  If not, that is exactly what I plan to do with some of these but butters.


When it comes down to it, store bought peanut butter isn't that expensive, isn't seasonal and has a classic flavor that is difficult to reproduce.  There was no way that I would be trying to replicate a jar of JIF or Skippy.  First of all, I don't have the right equipment in my kitchen to make a creamy peanut butter that smooth.  Would I really want to anyways?  Those creamy peanut butters are packed full of sugar and salt.  What I wanted to try and copy was a store bought jar of natural peanut butter.

If you compare servings of JIF and a natural peanut butter, you'll be looking at two things with roughly the same number of calories.  Natural peanut butter has a much more pronounceable ingredient list.  Usually these jars contain just peanuts, salt and maybe a little oil.  An ingredient list like that makes for something that can easily be made at home.


One thing, I didn't want to make plain old simple peanut butter.  I wanted fancy peanut butter and that's just what I made.  I present to you, White chocolate peanut butter.  I've been enjoying this spread on top of waffles for breakfast and by the spoonful at any time of the day.

I didn't stop with peanut butter though.  My favorite nut is the walnut.  I'm my fathers child when it comes to the fact.  He requests each and every cookie that my mom makes, contain walnuts.  I'll toss walnuts in my cookies, quick breads, pasta sauces and salads.  My love of walnuts drove me to take a pound of walnuts and feed them to the food processor.  The outcome was simply amazing.  Spiked with a bit of cinnamon, the cinnamon walnut butter I created tastes just like the holidays.  This stuff is destined for a batch of cookies, I can't wait.


What is your favorite nut?  Have you thought of whipping up a batch of your favorite nut butter?  Almonds, pecans, cashews.  These would all make amazing spreads, have a go at it with your food processor!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tortellini and Artichokes in Walnut Sauce

I'm not here right now, I'm in Alaska!  Please leave a message!  Beeeeeeeepppp...


I left you some pasta to eat while I'm gone.  Don't burn the house down!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Gorgonzola and Leek Risotto

I'm counting down the days of work left this week.  Why do I only have three days left?  The reason is simple, come Friday at 8:00 am boyfriend and I will be winging our way to Seattle!  After a five hour flight from JFK to the west coast, we'll be heading to the port and boarding another cruise ship!

It's like 2012 is the year of the cruise vacation for us.  I'm thinking of booking us a Greek Isles cruise in the fall just to round out the year of sailing.  This time, boyfriend and I are heading north into the chilly waters off the coast of Alaska.  We will be floating through iceberg infested water, sailing with humpback whales and watching glaciers slowly creep toward the sea.  I'm looking forward to hearing my first glacier calf, does it really sound like thunder?


We are almost ready to go.  This weekend I went out and bought a winter coat.  With the blanket-jacket retired and sent to Goodwill and only my plum-colored wool coat hanging in the closet, I really needed something that would keep me warm and dry in the Alaskan summer.  While the middle of summer isn't the best time to search for a great winter jacket, I managed a great find at Century 21!  A sleek lime green, waterproof, hooded parka!

Now, if I could only decide what else to pack...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring Frittata, Spring Arugula Salad & Basil Panna Cotta with Strawberry gelee

Is there a time of the year that is any better than spring?  Personally, it is my favorite season and there are so many reasons why.

First, spring means that I can break out my cute dresses and strap on some adorable sandels.  I'm saying "see you later" to my winter coat and donning my favorite black satin spring jacket (seriously, it's so adorable, I'm sad I can only wear it in the in between weather times!).  Now that I'm a non-grad student type person and have all this weekend free time, I live in dresses as soon as the weather agrees with it!


Next, tulips.  Tulips are the most awesome flower, ever.  I will carry tulips down the aisle whenever I get around the getting married.  I have a vase of pink and yellow tulips sitting on the table next to me at this very moment.  Tulips are so much more amazing that roses because they have a little personality.  I think it looks like they are sighing.  When I see my first few tulips of spring, I'm a happy banana.


Finally, the farmers market.  I fell in love with the idea of a weekend market during my time in Madison, WI.  The market on the capitol square rivals all other markets I've been to, including all the ones I've stopped by in NYC.  I miss the Dane Country farmers market, you could do all of your grocery shopping there.  While our local one isn't quite so large, the produce is fresh and local.  It's also a ten minutes walk away.  While the pickings are scarce right now, soon natures bounty will start to overflow the farm stands.


To celebrate spring, Frigidaire was kind enough to sponsor a series of spring posts via Foodbuzz. In keeping with the fresh and local theme, I headed to the farmers market and picked up everything that I could from the stands (the rest was filled in by our local Whole Foods). Farm fresh eggs with crisp spring asparagus and herbs. Sweet raspberries and peppery arugula. Local cream, flavored with bright green basil and finished off with sweet-tart strawberries. This meal gets me ready for spring and looking forward to the bounty of the farmers market.


This post was sponsored by Frigidaire. When you check out Suzanne Goin's springtime recipes at www.maketimeforchange.com, Frigidaire will donate $1 to Save the Children's U.S. programs. Plus, you'll be entered for a chance to win the new Frigidaire Range with SymmetryTM Double Ovens – featuring two large ovens (that can each fit up to a 28 pound turkey!), providing the flexibility to cook multiple dishes at the same time at different temperatures, so you can get more on the table at the same time.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Iceberg Wedge & Blue Cheese Dressing

Welcome to the new year everyone!  I hope the first two days have treated you well.  If my first two days of the year reflect how everyone else spent their first two days, I hope you all enjoyed shopping at Walmart and Target, buying storage containers and hangers! 


Yesterday, boyfriend and I spent the day cleaning and organizing the apartment in preparation for our move to a slightly smaller apartment.  We filled up three huge garbage bags with clothes than no longer fit into our wardrobe and dropped them off at the donation bin.  The huge pile of metal hangers made their way to the recycling bin.  The pile of shoes in the bottom of the coat closet got organized and whittled down. 

Along our cleaning journey, we realized that we had accumulated lots of new clothes for christmas and were in need of hangers.  A series of thoughts brought us to getting in the car and driving to the closest Walmart, only to discover that everyone else in the county decided to go there too.  Were you at the big box store this weekend, because I think just about everyone in the world was in my checkout line.  (Warning - if you take a cart FULL of items into the "Speedy Checkout Line" you're going to get quite a few snide comments)


At the end of the day, our closet was slightly cleaner and our bodies were tired.  There was very little energy remaining to prepare anything for dinner.  Chopping a head of lettuce into four pieces was just about the amount of prep I could handle. 

Iceberg wedge & Blue cheese dressing
Adapted from Williams Sonoma - New York


I've had a couple of wedge salads in my time and I've always wanted to make it at home.  The dressing always had the same notes, but I didn't have a good base recipe.  This recipe from Williams Sonoma really hit the spot.  Although, to be completely honest with you...  After I photographed the pretty wedges of lettuce, I chopped it up and tossed it into a big bowl.  So much easier to eat, just less pretty to look at!

1 head iceberg lettuce, cut into 4-6 wedges

1/2 cup mayonaisse
1/2 cup light sour cream
juice from 1 lemon
dash of Tabasco
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
4 oz crumbled blue cheese
1 tbsp fresh chive, finely chopped

1/2 cup candied walnuts
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Plate one wedge of lettuce per plate.

In a large bowl, whisk together all ingredients for the salad dressing (mayo through chives).  Spoon a few tablespoons of dressing over each wedge.  Spinkle with cranberries and walnuts.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Daring Bakers - Povitica

On a recent Friday at work, we had ourselves a party.  It was a party that is probably right up your alley.  It was called Bake-toberfest and it was for charity.


For Bake-toberfest, the kitchen-saavy members of my company took to their ovens (and a couple to their cars and the grocery store) and produced some seriously delicious treats.  I wish I had pictures of the tables.  There were pies, cookies, cakes, bars, cupcakes, tarts and even a jell-o dish, lining over fifteen feet of table.  The bakers had really outdone themselves.

You might be asking what we did with all of these treats?  Were we baking and sharing just to pig out and drink all of the milk in the lunchroom fridge?  No, it was all for charity.  For a mere $5, you were allowed to come in the room and enjoy the buffet of sugar.  For a scant $10, you could not only enjoy the treats at work, but you could bring as much home and you could carry.  It was a brilliant idea, because once someone glanced over the table of treats, there was no way that $10 wasn't making its way into the till.

The Daring Baker's October 2011 challenge was Pivitica, hosted by Jenni of The Gingered-Whisk.  Povitica is a traditional Eastern European Dessert Bread that is as lovely to look at as it is to eat!  I decided that it was the perfect item to bring in for Bake-toberfest.  It was totally different from anything else on the table and quickly disappeared.  Even a coworker who tried to stay away from the buffet, couldn't help herself from trying a piece.  When I asked her why, she responded "We have this at home, it's a treat we eat during the holidays!"  My coworker is originally from Romania, and was very happy with this recipe.  She suggests you eat the end pieces, because they are the best!

In the end, Bake-toberfest was able to raise almost $800!  Quite the feat for a table full of goodies.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Pizza Foccacia

Among all of the big changes that have been happening in the Wilde household, the change in living situations is probably one of the biggest.  For the past eight years, boyfriend and I have been a long distance couple.  It did help that we've known each other for the past fifteen years and also that we were both so very busy while we were apart.  Boyfriend was busy building his career and getting a great job, while I spent my time holed up in labs finishing my education.


Now that we are living in one household it's totally different.  Good different!  Not only are the living expenses cut in half (a great bonus), but sometimes I arrive home to discover the laundry I put in the dryer that morning has folded itself up and put itself away!  The dishwasher empties itself and even dinner arrives without me having to lift a finger!

Now, I realize that boyfriend might have a bit to do with the amazing feats of housework and food prep (ordering) because these things never happened when I was living alone!  Food covered dishes would just sit in the sink until I faced the music and put them in the dishwasher.  Laundry would remain in the dryer until I tried to run another load, so that's where those pants were all week...  Dinner would often be a bowl of lettuce that I would call a salad. 


Living with boyfriend definitely has is benefits, most of all being, I get to see him every day.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Banana Coconut Muffins


I'm out.  Yesterday I said goodbye to the hallowed halls of academia, my wonderful labmates, my brilliant undergrad and my faithful hood.  I made the trek to my new home sweet home, New Jersey.  This morning I woke up realizing that I wouldn't ever again be working seven day weeks.  I wouldn't see the sun rise and set while working at my bench.  No more would I lose days and weeks, only to realize that summer had passed me by.  It's time to revel in it, I'm a grown up!

It sounds strange to be excited about being a grown up, but I've been in the ranks of higher education for eleven and a half years.  And this isn't even a long time for someone with my degree.  I graduated undergrad in four years, even with taking a year to be a photography major.  I completed my PhD in exactly five years, defending my thesis on the exact day that I joined UW - Madison, five years later.  I worked as a Postdoc in a fabulous lab and completed a couple of natural projects. 

In the end I obtained the goal I set forth as a graduate student.  Most people make 30 before 30 goals.  I made just one goal and I made it, with a few months to spare.  Get a real job, before hitting the big three-O.  Now I'm making big plans of what to do with my weekends, how to spend my vacations and trying to figure out what real people do with three-day weekends.  At least I'll have help to fill my time. 

For eight years boyfriend and I have been a long distance couple, both of us moving around the country for jobs and school.  I'm very happy to tell you that I'm sitting in OUR apartment, writing this post.  Together at last, I hope I don't annoy him too much.  Better go make him some cookies to soften the transition.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Filled Meringue Coffee Cake

The March 2011 Daring Baker's challenge was hosted by Ria of Ria's Collection and Jamie of Life's a Feast.  Ria and Jamie challenged the Daring Bakers to bake a yeasted meringue coffee cake.  I love breakfast and when I learned that this months Daring Baker's challenge would be a coffee cake, I was jazzed.  I've never made a yeasted coffee cake before and this was something new to try out. 



To just look at the pictures doesn't do this recipe service.  The dough was so smooth and springy, it was a treat to work with.  Many people called this dough "sexy" and after making it, I have to agree.  It was so easy to roll out and fill, it rose and baked up like a dream. 



When it came down to deciding what to fill this sexy dough with I thought to keep it simple.  When I was little, we would get an Entenmann's walnut danish ring for breakfast every weekend.  When picking out the ring, my dad would go with the ring with the most frosting on the top.  As a kid, I couldn't help but agree with this method of choosing breakfast.  More frosting = more sugar!  I decided to fill my coffee cake with something similar to the Entenmann's version.  Cinnamon sugar with dried cranberries and walnuts, coated in a delicious layer of orange icing.


How did this coffee cake compare to the Entenmann's version of my youth?  Listen up dad, THIS IS SO MUCH BETTER!  The meringue melts into the coffee cake making it unbelievably moist and the cranberries and walnuts give it great sweetness and crunch.  Give up your storebought danish ring and head to the kitchen with mom, you won't be sorry.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

BBAC - Cranberry-Walnut Celebration Bread

I love a challenge. When I’m presented with a task, I’m going to complete it. Maybe I’m stubborn like that. Actually, yes, I’m very stubborn. I’ve been told this several times in the past. When I first got to grad school, I was nervous. It was the first time in my life that I was living away from home. I lived at home the entire time I was in college, it was free and only five miles away from school. Moving fourteen hours away from my parents, brother and boyfriend was hard. Every few days I sat thinking “Why am I here? Was this a good idea?”




Luckily I made friends and came to discover that every other first year grad student was thinking the same thing.  Even those who had gone to undergraduate far from home were questioning their decision to come to grad school. The first year of grad school was tough. Challenging classes, the stress of finding the right group to join and teaching teenagers freshman chemistry, it just all piled on. Some people cracked, it’s a lot of pressure. Most people succeeded and we were stronger for it.


Making it to the fifth qualifier, our official anniversary, was so uplifting. Completing our first year in grad school was just the first of many hurdles we would have to overcome, that first year hardened us. From there on out we would present seminars, defend original research proposals, write papers and get scooped. Getting scooped is always the worst.


In the back of my mind I always knew that I could finish what I started. It might start off a little shaky, uneasy of the strange new ground I was walking, but every challenge makes me stronger. Each step becoming more steady, until that goal is accomplished. Triumph!


So what is the challenge that I’m talking about today? The Bread Bakers Apprentice challenge! I started a few months ago with the Anadama bread. It turned out well, but being new to yeast, it wasn’t perfect. Later, I celebrated my gram with Cinnamon bread. A fitting tribute to many days spent in her home as a child. This year I plan to finish this challenge. Forty recipes in fifty-two weeks, here is the first one of the year. And it is going to be a hard one to surpass, absolutely delicious.


The cranberry-walnut celebration bread can be found on page 154 of Peter Reinhart’s Bread Bakers Apprentice (also on several other bloggers webpage). I made no changes to the recipe and it was absolutely delicious. I wound up eating the whole loaf in a matter of days. Yep, just me, one person, ate the whole loaf. It was amazing as French toast and great slathered in butter as an evening snack. The double braid was a kick to make and made the bread look gorgeous. Give it a try, you will not be disappointed.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Walnut-Strawberry Quick Bread

Before I moved out to the east coast I was living in Broomfield, Colorado. If you have ever been to this area of the country then you are familiar with its beautiful year-round weather, fantastic views and plethora of health-conscious people. Colorado is consistently ranked as the fittest state in the country, with one of the lowest obesity rates. The first two qualities of Colorado help influence the third. When the weather is nice and there is a mountainous playground at your front door, you tend to enjoy your exercise so much more.



While I spent the majority of my time in Colorado working in the lab, I did take some time to enjoy the sights. I would pack myself a nice slice of banana bread and head out into the wilderness. Just me and my water bottle, against all of the elements of nature, I would set out into the Rocky Mountains. By reading the signs at the entry to the park you expect to be attacked by at least three woodland creatures before you leave.


According to the signs you must… 1. Not go into the areas marked with specific signs because they are raptor nesting areas. Now, I don’t know about you, but personally I don’t think we should be promoting raptor procreation. Didn’t the people of Colorado ever see Jurassic park? 2. If you see a cougar, you should yell at it. I think that having a nice conversation with the cougar would suffice, but apparently this will not keep it from mauling me. 3. Beware of bears. There wasn’t much more helpful information beyond that.


Luckily for me I made it out of the wilderness without getting mauled by raptors, cougars, bears or any other mysterious animals. The Rocky Mountains are full of crazy animals, many of which I was not warned about on the signs. What if I came upon a tap-dancing squirrel or a monkey with a tambourine? Other than thinking that the local circus lost a train car, I would have no idea what to do. I guess I would just have to offer them some of my bread.


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