My relationship with the Mississippi State Bulldogs is like an arranged marriage - but one of those that the couple is really glad they got together and is really blissfully happy and will stay married forever. I was destined to be a Bulldog before birth, and when I entered the world, the blurb in the city newspaper said "Future MSU Cheerleader Born." Seriously. It's framed somewhere in my parents' house.
Growing up in Starkville, the heart of Bulldog Country, and being the child of a Mississippi State Athletic Department employee didn't leave me much choice of objects of my college affections (or rivals, for that matter). I was a Bulldog cheerleader for about 3 Halloweens, went to game after game after game with my dad (happy or not), and after high school decided to become a Bulldog myself. Despite my maroon blood, it took my moving away from Starkville to realize how much the university means to me. I find myself recounting memories of my deliriously happy college days each time I set foot or just ride through campus, and I finally realize why people give hundreds and thousands of dollars to still feel like a Bulldog.
By the way, other Bulldogs won the SEC tourney this weekend, but we're Little Rock bound! Good Luck, Dawgs!
I am a hair product fool. My mane has pretty much every characteristic that even one alone would cause a coif crisis. It pretty much defines high maintenance, and it takes months or even years to develop a styling regiment. Those that know me (or my hair) well can testify to this cold, hard truth: I am forever chasing the dream of the wash-and-go style. Won't happen. Not for me. So, I turn to the product du jour - "better living through chemistry" as my photograper friend Bill Powell says.
My favorite fixin's now are all made by Bumble and bumble. I always new the company existed and thought the packaging was cool (I wanted to be the person who wrote out the name of the product to print on the bottle - cool penmanship). But working at The Alluvian Spa, a Bumble and bumble network salon, turned me on to actually trying the products. My personal faves (and ones I used this morning actually) are defrizz, grooming creme and brilliantine. All of course are geared towards taming the beast that is my hair.
Now for this week's Delicious Dish... Neither "Delicious" nor "Dish" nor the title of this week's recipe begins with a "b." My apologies for not keeping consistent with my theme.
Shrimp and Wild Rice Casserole
1 (8-ounce) package wild rice
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (I got the frozen kind, and it's actually really good. Just be sure whatever you get is a product of the USA!)
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 (10 3/4-ounce can) condensed cream of mushroom soup (can use the low-fat version if you so desire)
2 cups grated sharp Cheddar
Salt and pepper
Cook the rice according to package directions minus 1/4 cup water. Drain and cool.
Bring 2 cups water and 1/2 tablespoon salt to a boil in a medium saucepan and cook the shrimp for 1 minute. Drain immediately and set aside. (Or thaw and de-tail the shrimp and set aside.)
Heat the butter in saucepan and saute the pepper and onion until soft, about 5 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
In a large bowl, combine the rice, soup, 1 1/2 cups of cheese, shrimp and vegetables. Add salt and pepper, to taste. Mix well. Spray a 9-inch square aluminum cake pan or an 11 by 7-inch glass casserole dish with vegetable spray. Place the mixture in the pan and top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake for 30 minutes, until bubbly.