Sunday, February 28, 2010

My Craft Room Project Today-and Sunday Doings

Wow, I actually see that I have a floor in one section of my room now-lol

This one corner was stacked high with stuff to take to resale shops. I also still have two big boxes of books to sell-one of them is left over from our exotic bird business and I still have some high end books in there. I have sold over half of what I had since our move here, but still would love to get these others sold too.

I don't like selling on ebay any more, so need to check out some other sources.

I did pack up three more boxes to take up to the resale shop; so those are ready to go out the door every other week. I also have a really big bag full of stuff to take on tuesday when we go. I also have 6 bigger items I can take too this week-so that'll definately give me back my space in the end.

I found a big bag of wool for projects that I don't have any more room for-so no more collecting of wool til I get a chance to use it up-weaving, or rug hooking. I also found the big bag of fabric I hand dyed for curtains here in the house-just waiting for Larry to get trim made-which he can't do til we get some warmer weather.

So for now I found a spot for those items. I also found another partial bolt of natural kona cotton which I use to dye with-so thats a good find as well.

I'm tired now, so no more of that for today. I did also wash up all the throw rugs in the house, which really needed getting done, but now that leaves vacuming up the house, which may not get done today.

Last fall I made up sollutions in big glass jars for dye projects. One is copper pieces in vinegar and water, and the other is rusty stuff in vinegar and water-these will be used as mordants in my natural dye projects to get different colors. I finally uncovered that at the bottom of the pile-and my copper glass jar is deteriating the rubber lid-and it really smells. So now I gotta figure put what to do with that. I don't want to lose my copper solution, but if I put it outside it will freeze-so that's my dilema at the moment.

Off to find some lunch, and maybe I can find another burst of energy-

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Happy Saturday

The sun is out shining bright on this cold brisk morning. It just does not want to warm up back to normal around here. I won't complain too much though, after hearing about all the intense weather happenings elsewhere.

I am finishing up baking my gluten free chocolate chip cookies, the oven will warm up the center of the house a bit this morning, and I should get finished just before we need to leave to pick up our Angel Food order this morning. This month I just ordered 2 of their fresh fruit and veggie boxes. Working on cleaning out the freezer before I order more meats.

It promise to warm to 40 this afternoon, so perhaps I can be outside a bit. Nikita and I had a lovely longer walk yesterday-due to the sunshine and a little warmer temps.

On my last post I listed some quilting and craft books I am selling, if interested do take a look, I need to make room for some new books-lol

Enjoy your saturday.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Some of my Quilting and Craft Books for Sale

The simple Joys of Quilting by Joan Hanson and Mary Hickey, hard cover 2001 first printing, usa; this is a really nice introduction to quilting with lots of projects. can see ">here $8.00

Quilting by Betty Alfers 1978 first printing usa, hard cover, jacket torn in one spot but has been taped. A really nice book with over 50 patterns to use in your home as applique, embroider, quilting, and more can see here $5.00

Quilts for Babies designs by Cheryl Fall 1995 house of birches usa, This a booklet with 6 patterns for baby see here $2.00

Cut No Squares by Betty Gall 1987 USA by Quilters Rule This is a booklet with two patterns-Trip around the world, and Streak of Lightening found here $6.50

Seasonal Samplers Autumn and Winter by Debbie Mumm 1997 first printing China Typical Debbie Mumm, a very fun booklet with lots of projects see here $6.00

12 Days of Christmas by Debbie Mumm 2000 revised 2002 China a gorgeous book full of holiday projects see here 7.00

Winter Fun Guide for Avon by Better Homes and Gardens 1980 usa this is really a nice little paperback booklet with lots of projects of all kinds and many recipes too. It even has a how to for crochet rugs from fabric that is real popular again now. I even found it at amazon too here $3.00

Homemade Tree Trimmings by Current 1982 usa this is a neat little booklet with patterns for tree ornaments and I found this at amazon too here $3.00

The Candle Book by Carl Laklan MCMLVI usa first edition this is a hard cover older book with cover, on candle making couldn't find this book online $1.00

The Complete Book of Pillow Stitchery by Jill Jarnow 1979 usa this is a hard cover book with cover, that I have owned since it first came out-great book on how to make all kinds of pillows see here $2.00

The Complete Book of Stuffed Work by Toni Scott 1978 usa, this is a hard cover with jacket, very good condition a little yellowed due to its age otherwise very good. a really cool "art" book for lots of ideas. see here $15.00

Contact me privately if interested, prices of books are plus shipping-I can ship the cheapest way with media mail. Prefer payment thru paypal or will accept usa postal money order. Thanks for looking.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Suns Out-Cold Though-Grinding Flour this Morning

Woke up to 11 degrees again this morning, but the good thing is the sun is a shining bright again today

See full size image

(I actually used my KitchenAid with grain grinder attachment this morning-I couldn't find my photo, and my camera needs charging)

Got a bunch of flour ground up this morning, spelt flour, whole wheat pastry flour, and bread baking whole wheat flour. I keep forgetting that I still have whole wheat to grind in the freezer. A few years back from Bobs Red Mill; I ordered in 25 pound bags of lots of stuff-the two kinds of whole wheat, corn, brown rice, spelt to grind into flour.

I have pretty much been making everything gluten free for the two of us, instead of making whole wheat for Larry and then gf for me. He is diabetic also, so I figured the gf things I make is giving him whole grains and a variety opposed to just the wheat. But the whole wheat needs to get used up, so now that I have fresh ground flours and its still so cold here, especially in the mornings-I will get into some baking.

I also dug out some teff, amaranth, and quinoa flours to use up as well. Some of these flours are getting pretty old. Thought of working up some cracker recipes with these, and maybe some breads too.

If you are looking for gluten free recipes, I just put in my links section-- my friend Endless'recipes-she has lots of excellent recipes for gluten free baking.

I am off to see if its warmed up outside yet, and if not back to my craft room.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

My Doings Here-Photos in Craft Room

We are not getting snow this week, but we are getting very very cold temperatures which I am also sick of. I know I am not as bad off as those of you getting hit again with snow-but I am frustrated with this cold weather and long long winter

On the plus side we had sunshine today, but now I see the winds have picked up again. Another plus is that we cut much more wood for the wood stoves last year figuring we would get ahead a half year, so we did not run out of firewood, which alot of locals here are doing. We will be doing good though to just make it thru the end of March into April if this unusual cold continues.

It took me several hours to get going this morning due to the cold house, I got the woodstove going good again in the living room, which my craft room is off of, so worked in there most of the day.

Above photos are of the area I have been working on. My desk and sewing machine is in this corner as well. The first one shows all my projects, batting, and muslin in bags. That green piece rolls down and is my quilting design wall.

The second photo is all my material, books organized, and those big black bags are of that organic cotton batting-all my shelves around the room are full of that-so need to get that used up for more room.

I didn't realize how totally out of control this room is, til I got serious about going thru stuff and clearing out. I have a huge corner filled up with odd scraps and stuff to take to the resale shop. Too bad we can only take in one bag every other week.

Today I organized again in the shelves area, and to see if I had books I could recycle. I have a small pile of christmas quilting and craft books and lots of magazines so will probably list those here real cheap before taking them into the resale shop.

I have lots of interest in the fiber world-sewing, quilting, dyeing, weaving, rug hooking, punch needle, needle felting, and the list goes on -lol-thats how it gets so filled up with stuff-oh and I also love leather so I have a huge stash of that too.

Another good thing, I can see most of the top of my big desk now-so I guess I am making some progress.

I need to grind up some flour again so I can bake, so I just may do that tomorrow and make some cookies. I have a taste for some chocolate chip cookies or oatmeal cookies.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Chicken Tuesdays---Chicken in Pottery

I love baking chicken in pottery

This following one I found, is really different: The chicken stands up in this pottery piece, go to the link for another view, and baking instructions

http://www.tumbleweedpottery.com/product_p/5510.htm

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I have a couple really old pieces-similiar looking to these newer ones: found here https://www2.securesiteserver.co.uk/wmpot/store/chickenbrick.asp

(I tried bringing over a photo but it's javascript)

and here is this companies pdf on how to cook with these

https://www2.securesiteserver.co.uk/wmpot/store/chicken_brick_instructions.pdf

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From North Africa comes the tagines also made of clay:

I found this site that sells them http://www.fantes.com/tagine.html

and this site has information on the tagines and a recipe http://www.tagines.com/chicken_with_lemon__olives.cfm

traditional terracotta tagines in cobalt blue, green, and natural

a recipe

Moroccan Chicken with Lemon and Olives

Moroccan Chicken with Lemon and Olives Recipe

Ingredients

2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon tumeric
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 Tbsp olive oil
1 chicken, 3-4 lbs, cut into 8 pieces (or 3-4 lbs of just chicken thighs and legs, the dark meat is more flavorful)
Salt

3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped

The peel from 1 preserved lemon, rinsed in cold water, pulp discarded, peel cut into thin strips
1 cup green olives, pitted
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup raisins

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Method

1 Combine all the spices in a large bowl. Pat dry the chicken pieces and put in the bowl, coat well with the spice mixture. Let the chicken stand for one hour in the spices.

2 In a large, heavy bottomed skillet, heat the olive oil on medium high heat. Add the chicken pieces, sprinkle lightly with salt (go easy on the salt, the olives and lemons are salty), and brown, skin side down for five minutes. (If you are using a clay tagine, you will skip the browning step, heat only to medium heat and use a heat diffuser on the heating element to prevent the tagine from cracking.) Lower the heat to medium-low, add the garlic and onions. Cover and let cook for 15 minutes.

moroccan-chicken-2.jpg

3 Turn chicken pieces over. Add the lemon slices, olives, raisins, and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a simmer on medium heat, then lower the heat to low, cover, and cook for an additional 30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through and quite tender.

4 Mix in fresh parsley and cilantro right before serving. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Serves 4 to 6. Serve with couscous, or rice

tagine.jpg recipe found here http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/moroccan_chicken_with_lemon_and_olives/

Sunday, February 21, 2010

My Sunday-sorting out all my fabric

It is almost 3 pm here, and it is still raining. Hoping it doesn't turn to ice tomorrow morning-that would not be nice.

Today is the only day so far I haven't turned on the olympics. I don't enjoy watching hockey and I think that is mostly whats on today.

I tackled the organization of my fabric last night-didn't realize it was 1 am til I took a shower and crawled into bed. Time does fly by on these kinds of projects. I started back up on it around 8 am or so this morning, and just now called it quits.

It seems my little craft room is in a bigger upheavel than before-as I took everything off of two shelves to re organize as well. I did go thru 4 boxes of fabric, and another big big box of mens shirts-so I got rid of all that sitting around. I now have one shelf full of homespuns, calicos, flannels, and the shirts all sorted out by color groups. wow I guess I need to find some guys that need a quilt as I have lots for making mens quilts. lol

I also sorted out the rest of my quilt fabric by color groups as well. Sandy is going thru her craft room too, and she gave me a big stack of homespuns and also of florals. Over christmas time an online quilt friend sent me a big box of very high end quilt fabrics that she didn't want any more-so I went thru that-and sorted by colors-and wow I can actually see what I have available now. giggling.

On a second shelf I have these little vintage wire baskets and I have them sorted out too by colors and types of all the little scraps that can still me made into things. Most of those were in boxes too. and I took another larger wire basket and filled it with all my hand dyes, rust dyes, and sun dyes so it is nice to have those all together in one spot too.

On a previous day I went thru all my neutrals, and all my started projects and put each into a bag and labeled it all so I could find those. I also went thru odds in batting and got rid of all the polyester and bagged up all the cotton batting.

My fabric shelves do look nice. Next is back to the books in that room, and see if I can get that down in size, and to finish bagging up fabric scraps to sell at the resale shop.

and then next up is go thru button and beads that sitting around, look in things to see what is in them-lol-

I think I will read a bit before figuring out supper

Hope you all are having a wonderful day today

Art Sundays--Rain

It's raining here-sooooo my theme for today:

by Francis Hamel

by Zach Ladner

found here

Be sure to visit Nemo our host for the art sunday tour

Friday, February 19, 2010

Happy Friday-and my Little Vase

This is my little vase from Japan I picked up for .40 cents. It really does amaze me what we can find between the two resale shops we go to.

I have my eye now on two very old pottery bowls, that are yellowish and have a carved design in them., carved too in the bottom USA, and they are heavy-will go with my pottery bowl collection. They are marked now at $18.00 a piece so will keep my eye on them for when they go half off if the pieces haven't sold by then.

We are getting a bit of warm up, in the 40s but we have alot of rain moving in-rather rain than snow-The house stays very comfortable with the wood stoves, as long as we don't get down to those 20s and lower-which has been the case most of this winter. I told Larry when it is time for the ac this year, I will probably set it at 80 or 85 cause I have been soooo cold these past few months.

I am off to do the months bills-hoping the last of the Multiply "move" goes without a hitch.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Vintage Quilt Top Find Yesterday

Yesterday when we dropped off our bag of stuff to sell, we also always walk around to see what new treasures we can find-lol The fun is the "hunt"

I really am working on being more particular of what I bring back home, cause right now the object is to get rid of un needed "stuff"

I was really good and passed up several full length 100% wool coats that were going for just a couple dollars, and I did not even look at the mens shirts cause I need to work up what I have already. I also did not go back to the little craft area in one store, and just let Sandy go thru stuff-so I wouldn't be tempted-lol

However, when I saw this little quilt top all rolled up and taped for $6.50-I had to bring this home with me-like I really need another quilting project.

When we took it to the desk we opened it up, as I wanted to make sure it was not damaged. It did have several big rust areas but Sandy said to make up a sollution of water and Biz and let it soak. I seem to find these colors too, in quilts and need to find them a home.

This was hand pieced with lovely stitches, the quilter did a nice job.The size is a full I believe or a wide single.

I haven't dated the fabrics but I am just guessing here maybe 50s or earlier. I soaked this for about 6 hours this morning, washed and put in dryer til just damp. I believe all the rust came out-it really is a lovely find.

I also found a vintage pair of pillow cases which I am glad now I picked up. and little pieces of china from Japan always catch my eye, the older hand painted pieces. I picked up a gorgeous little vase that was 80% off, when I looked at my receipt I only paid .40 for it-I am really pleased with that. I will try to take a photo of that piece later.

Well, I am dragging today, but need to get wood in under the house again cause winter is back tomorrow, or if not cold enough to snow, lots of rain.

Just came in for a little break and to take the quilt top out of the dryer catch ya later

A Knitted Surpise in the Mail

I love getting mail, especially when the mail has package surprises.( giggling )

Isn't this too cool! I love these. Awhile back when I was going thru books in my craft room-alot from the late 60s and 70s I ran into a really nice book on how to knit. I had attempted knitting back then and just didn't pursue it.

My friend Kimberli was learning to knit and this book was full of excellent photos so I shared the book with her. She has knitted a few things now, and for a thank you she made me this pair of wrist warmers-They are warm and comfy; I just love them.

Here is the pattern Kimberli used for you knitters that would like to make a pair www.vogueknitting.com/free_patterns/ribbed_wristers.aspx.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Little Doings Yesterday

It was a cold, but dry day-so the roads were safe for our trip to Springfield, Mo. We have been looking forwarad to getting out of the woods for a bit and going to the "city"

After some errands we went quilt fabric shopping-always a treat to go to a "real" quilt shop-lol

My friend found some of the fabrics she needed and I was able to pick up the rest of the pieces for my 1800s quilt top.

This is the quilt I want to make, it was made in the 1800's and I have been collecting the fabrics for a bit now. I still needed to find fabric for the sashings which is large florals. One of the quilt shops we like to visit, keeps expanding their sale room-and they had lots of reproduction fabrics in there, so was able to pick up several pieces for half off. Here is a link to the pattern http://www.terrythompson.com/book7.html

Another treat for us is to end our day at Sam's Club, wish we had this store closer, but we don't so whenever we go to Springfield we stop in. They had lots of wonderful fresh fruits so that was wonderful.

Today we are off to the resale shops so we can drop off a big bag of stuff to sell and get out of our houses. I may drop off some books at the resale book shop too.

and we just may see some sunshine today-that would sure be wonderful-enjoy your hump day!

Monday, February 15, 2010

"Doings" Here Today

Well, yesterday I just did not accomplish a thing, well I did go thru a fabric stash, but today I am getting more things done.

I got a big bag ready to go out of the house and off to the resale shop. Sandy and I are getting ourselves back on schedule to take a bag or box in every other week, which is their schedule. and I will also will donate a few bags to the animal thrift shop.

My craft room has just gotton totally out of control, and I can't move around in there any more-lol Alot of stuff got accumulated in there to get rid of, and I need to go thru my craft stash and get rid of stuff I know I won't use. as my room sits now, I can't even begin to use my looms.

Larry's cake turned out beautiful. I used organic unbleached flour, and organic sugar. In the past I have had troubles getting the organic sugar incorporated well in the mix. When that happens you don't get a nice rise, and it turns out more like a pound cake instead of a light angel food cake. I also used large cage free brown eggs which also gives us a beautiful color and nice rise.

I don't have any of my flours ground, used the last of it up the other day, so decided to make up one of the gf chocolate cakes-I really love the moistness and flavor of Bob's Red Mills Mix-I change the butter to light olive oil to keep the cholesterol down, but I think it makes the cake lighter and moister too.

and a nice surprise my christmas cactus is full of blooms-a sign of spring and warmer weather ahead-someday-hehehe

I also have the olympics on, so am catching the events as I do laundry and bake.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Art Sunday----Albert Bierstadt

Albert Bierstadt (January 7, 1830 - February 18, 1902) was a German-American painter best known for his large landscapes of the American West. In obtaining the subject matter for these works, Bierstadt joined several journeys of the Westward Expansion. Though not the first artist to record these sites, Bierstadt was the foremost painter of these scenes for the remainder of the 19th century.

Bierstadt was part of the Hudson River School, not an institution but rather an informal group of like-minded painters. The Hudson River School style involved carefully detailed paintings with romantic, almost glowing lighting, sometimes called luminism.

A biography here http://whitemountainart.com/Biographies/bio_ab.htm

Oregon Trail - Albert Bierstadt

Giant Redwood Trees of California - Albert Bierstadt

Vernal Falls - Albert Bierstadt

More here http://www.albertbierstadt.org/

Visit Nemo our host to take the art sunday tour


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Knitted Hat Pattern

This pattern came in one of my fiber newsletters


February Knits:
Small projects for a wintry afternoon......

HEIDI'S LEAF TOP
designed by Heidi Wulfraat






















Berocco Peruvia Quick is now in stock

you'll need: 16" circular 6mm and 6mm dpns (or size to get gauge)
1 skein Berroco, Peruvia Quick
sized to fit 20 - 23" head Gauge: approx 3st/inch (the hat is flexible)
K1tbl: knit through the back of the next loop (stitch)
K1f+b: knit into the front AND the back of the next stitch
SSK: slip the next two sts as if to knit then knit slipped sts together

Cast on 54 st loosely, place marker and join.
Ribbing: Rows 1-4 (P1, K1) rep to end

Pattern:
R 1-5: (P1, K1tbl, P4) rep
R6: (P1{K1, Yo, K1}in the next stitch, P4) rep
R7: (P1, K3, P4) rep
R8: (K1, Yo, K1, Yo, K1, K1f+b, P2, P2tog) rep
R9: (K5, P5) rep
R10: (K2, Yo, K1, Yo, K2, K1f+b, P2, P2tog) rep
R11: (P5, K7) rep
R12: (K1f+b, P2, P2tog, K3, Yo, K1, Yo, K3) rep
R13: (P4, K9, P1) rep
R14: (P2, P2tog, K2tog, K5, SSK, K1f+b) rep
R15: (P3, K7, P2) rep
R16: (P1, P2tog, K2tog, K3, SSK, K1f+b, P1) rep
R17: (P2, K5, P3) rep
R18: (P2tog, K2tog, K1, SSK, K1f+b, P2) rep
R19: (P1, K3, P4) rep
R20: (P1, K2tog, SSK, slip right St over left St, P3) rep
R21: (P1, K1, P3) rep , 45 Sts remain
R22: Knit
R23: Knit, evenly decreasing 5 Sts
R24: Knit
R25: Knit, change to dpns, 10 on each of 4 needles
R26: (K1, SSK, K5, K2tog) rep
R27: (K1, SSK, K3, K2tog) rep
R28: (K1, SSK, K1, K2tog) rep
cut working yarn leaving a tail, draw through remaining 8 Sts, darn in ends.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Herbs in Winter

Some thursdays I miss our herb thursday posts It is something some of us started on yahoo 360 and I really did enjoy researching them out, and reading others posts on herbs. We had stopped this for awhile due to lack of interest, but I thought of herbs this morning.

I ran into this really nice article on searching out your herb perennial bed during winter http://www.gourmet.com/food/2009/03/growing-winter-herbs during little thaws you will find several herbs with fresh green growth-perfect for your winter stews and such.

From Care 2-

The flavor associated with winter is salty. But rather than relying on table salt, learn to enjoy the wonderful mineral rich seaweeds such as kelp, nori, hiziki, and dulse which can be used to season food. Also, Celtic and Himalayan salt contain more minerals, as indicated by their colors. Black colored foods such as black sesame seeds, uncured black olives, and chia seeds make wonderful warming winter condiments.

Next: 7 culinary herbs that help us feel warmer and improve circulation

Click here to start the slideshow

and here is an article with photos on herbs the author found safely under the snow snow garden

Winter Herb Pasta

and a recipe for Herb Winter Pasta

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Ideas for all That Snow

Make the kids snow cones:

The native americans could have used maple syrup over fresh snow, I found this instructional blog http://blogs.villagevoice.com/forkintheroad/archives/2010/02/making_maple-sy.php

or on top of your snow cones-pour over some fruit juice, or kool-aid-made with less water, use your imagination

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Snow Play-the Old Fashioned Way http://www.kidznsnow.com/6420 this has some fun ideas for the kids

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How about making some snow ice cream? http://www.annarbor.com/entertainment/parenting/snow-day-family-fun---making-snow-cream/ they have a video at this link, here is the recipe too:

OLD-FASHIONED SNOW CREAM

Basic Recipe:

1 cup of milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Large bowl of clean snow

Before beginning make sure all ingredients are available and nearby, then make sure the children wash their hands. I had gone out to scoop the clean snow, and made sure the bowl was handy by the back door too.

First, measure the sugar into a bowl and add the milk and vanilla. Mix thoroughly until the sugar is dissolved. Next add the snow and mix until it resembles ice cream - You may need to cut the snow into the mixture vs. "mixing" it.

If you would like other flavors, replace the vanilla with chocolate syrup, puree some bananas or strawberries and add them, or add any flavor you and your family will enjoy, the sky is the limit!

Eat and enjoy!!!

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Don't have any snow and want some? Here is how to make snow http://www.kidsturncentral.com/holidays/makesnow.htm

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So if you are home on a snow day-go have some fun in the snow-lol-be a kid again

Snowman.jpg Snowman image by nkdancer22

snow_angel.jpg picture by kathyinozarks

(last two photos found on photobucket)

Recipe for a Healthier Version of Hot Chocolate Mix

This is from Whole Foods Market-I love this one so wanted to share. After re reading the ingredients in the diabetic version of hot chocolate mixes, they are just awful, especially the added unnecessary fats. I know alot of you don't or can't use Splenda, but for diabetics I would substitute the Splenda for the sugar, or I would use the new Sun Crystals which I really like-it is cane sugar with stevia-so no artificial stuff in it-unlike all the processing that goes into the new Truvia.

Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix

Makes about 2 cups (8 servings)

Spoon this hot chocolate mix into jars to give as gifts, or keep some on hand in your own pantry for chilly afternoons. For a burst of flavor, try steeping a bag of mint or almond tea in the mug along with the hot chocolate.

Ingredients

2 cups evaporated cane juice sugar
1 vanilla bean, cut into small pieces
1 cup powdered milk
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
Pinch of salt

Method

Put sugar and vanilla bean into a food processor and pulse until vanilla bean is very finely chopped and well incorporated. Strain vanilla sugar through a fine sieve, discarding any large pieces of vanilla bean that remain; transfer 1/2 cup of the vanilla sugar to a large bowl. (Save remaining vanilla sugar for another use.) Add milk, cocoa and salt to bowl with sugar, stir well and then transfer to an airtight container.

To make hot chocolate, put 1/4 cup of the mix and 1 cup boiling water into a mug and stir well. To make a flavored hot chocolate mix, try one of the following:

Spiced Hot Chocolate Mix
1 recipe hot chocolate mix (see above)
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Java-Style Hot Chocolate Mix
1 recipe hot chocolate mix (see above)
1 to 2 tablespoons instant coffee

Nutrition

Per serving (about 1oz/31g-wt.): 140 calories (40 from fat), 4.5g total fat, 2.5g saturated fat, 15mg cholesterol, 95mg sodium, 19g total carbohydrate (1g dietary fiber, 18g sugar), 5g protein

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chicken Tuesdays--Breakfast Casseroles

Since MamaBear is doing breakfast today, I got to thinking mmm sounds good, wish we had a Denny's nearby-I always liked them for "on the road" food. If you have a Dennys nearby they are serving free grand slam breakfast today. Take the Chicken Tuesday tour and learn the details at our hostess Mamabear's site.

Thinking of doing Breakfast Casseroles-these are great for a crowd of people staying at your house overnite.

Spicy Breakfast Casserole Here is a spicy version with sausage

Ingredients:

  • 12 to 16 ounces smoked andouille sausage, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped red or green bell pepper
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon Creole seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley, optional
  • 4 slices bread torn in 1-inch pieces, or use 2 large croissants, sliced sandwich-style and torn
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • salt and pepper











Preparation:

Heat oven to 350�. Butter a 2-quart baking dish.

In a large skillet, cook sliced sausage with the onion and bell pepper until vegetables are translucent. Whisk eggs with milk in a bowl with the Creole seasoning, pepper, and parsley, if using; set aside.

Arrange torn bread over the bottom of the buttered baking dish. Sprinkle with the sausage mixture and the diced tomatoes. Top with Cheddar cheese then pour the egg mixture evenly over the top. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until puffy and lightly browned.
Serves 6.

Note: there are some really nice spicy chicken sausages available now-those would be great in this recipe too

Or How about little mini quiches?

Picture of Mini Mushroom-and-Sausage Quiches Recipe

This is from Eating Well and makes about a dozen Mini Mushroom and Sausage Quiches

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces turkey breakfast sausage , removed from casing and crumbled into small pieces
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 cup sliced scallions
  • 1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 cup 1% milk








Directions

Position rack in center of oven; preheat to 325�F. Coat a nonstick muffin tin generously with cooking spray (see Tip).

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and cook until golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool. Add oil to the pan. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer mushrooms to the bowl with the sausage. Let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in scallions, cheese and pepper.

Whisk eggs, egg whites and milk in a medium bowl. Divide the egg mixture evenly among the prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle a heaping tablespoon of the sausage mixture into each cup.

Bake until the tops are just beginning to brown, 25 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Place a rack on top of the pan, flip it over and turn the quiches out onto the rack. Turn upright and let cool completely.

A good-quality nonstick muffin tin works best for this recipe. If you don't have one, line a regular muffin tin with foil baking cups

Friday, February 5, 2010

I need help Identifing a painters signature

I have a little painting that is a print titled Amiens and numbered 246-500 but I can not make out the spelling of the artist can anyone help?? could be French

these photos should enlarge so you can see the signature better

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Emeril's Homemade Granola Bars

granola

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup honey
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon almond or vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8- or 9- inch square baking pan and line with parchment. Lightly grease the parchment and set aside.

Place the oats and almonds on a large baking sheet and bake, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and reduce the temperature to 300 degrees F.

While the oats are toasting, combine honey and butter in a small saucepan and heat until butter is melted and honey is hot.

When oats come out of the oven, transfer to a large bowl and add hot honey, dates, raisins, brown sugar, salt, and almond extract and stir to thoroughly combine. Transfer mixture to the prepared baking pan.

Cut a piece of wax paper and place on top of the granola mixture. Using your hands, press the granola mixture very firmly into the pan. Remove wax paper and discard.

Bake the granola for 20 minutes, or until lightly golden around the edges. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool completely. Remove from the pan by pulling up on the edges of the parchment. Using a sharp knife, cut into 10 (or desired number) even bars.

Wrap in plastic wrap until ready to serve.

Yield: 10 to 20 servings, depending on the size of the bars

I like the looks of this recipe as it is low in added fats and is using honey instead of sugar, just a tablespoon of brown sugar-I think I may try some agave in this.

I haven't tried it yet but Bob's Red Mill is selling gluten free oatmeal. They are saying the problem with most oatmeal is, that it is being processed in a gluten facility.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Re Posting Some Cookbooks for Sale

Last December, I had posted several cookbooks to sell.

I decided to repost some of them again that are still left

The Pleasures of Italian Cooking by Romeo Salta Book Club edition 1962, harcover, very good condition, jacket cover normal wear due to age. can see here asking $8.00

Cool Entertaining by Irma Rhode first edition copy 1976, hard cover good condition. I couldn't find a photo of this one-a nice book asking $5.00

Mexican Cooking by Ruth Kershner and Josette Koch 1978, hard cover, good looking recipes couldn't find a photo on this one either, this is a thin book 78 pages, jacket cover has one tear asking $5.00

Norwood Pratt's Tea Lover's Treasury. seen here I have the first edition 1982 asking $5.00

Vegan Nutrition: Pure and Simple by Michael Klaper M.D. soft cover this the 3rd printing 1987 seen here mine is like new asking $12.00

here is a link to several books http://kathyinozarks.multiply.com/journal/item/1973/More_Cookbooks_Listed

and here too http://kathyinozarks.multiply.com/journal/item/1980/Last_of_the_Cookbooks

Cake Out of the Oven

Yummy!! I am really happy with the way this one turned out

I had one box left of Betty Crocker Yellow Gluten Free cake mix-so decided to make a cake this afternoon. Used light olive oil instead of the butter, soy milk instead of the water, added the eggs and vanilla extract, and mixed it up. I added in probably a 1/4 cup of very dark cocoa that I had gotton from the amish store, mixed that in, and then sliced thin a fresh pear, cut in small slices and stired that in the cake.

Yummy!! I bet the tapioca pudding will be wonderful over this chocolate cake in a bowl tonight

Old Fashioned Tapioca Pudding

I have had a taste for this, haven't made it in quite some time now. I always keep on hand the small pearls and also the large pearls. I don't see this in stores any more, so I buy mine from Bob's Red Mill online. I also usually go by their recipe too.

For the milk I use Silk soy milk; it takes about an hour of slow cooking on the stove. I seperate the eggs too, and in the end beat the whites and fold them in, and let heat thru well. Yummy!

http://www.bobsredmill.com/recipes_detail.php?rid=858 recipe for old fashioned tapioca pudding

Monday, February 1, 2010

Good Morning Monday and Blueberry Muffins Anyone??

Mmmmmm I am thinking blueberry muffins with coffee sounds wonderful this morning?

I found this gluten free recipe on Food Network:

  • 2 cups gluten-free all-purpose baking flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2/3 cup agave nectar
  • 2/3 cup rice milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries




















Directions

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, xanthan gum, and cinnamon. Add the oil, agave nectar, rice milk, and vanilla to the dry ingredients and stir until the batter is smooth. Using a plastic spatula, gently fold in the blueberries just until they are evenly distributed throughout the batter.

Pour 1/3 cup of the batter into each prepared cup, almost filling the cup. Bake the muffins on the center rack for 22 minutes, rotating the pan 180 degrees after 15 minutes. The muffin will bounce slightly when pressed and a toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean.

Let the muffins stand for 15 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and cool completely. Store the muffins in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

and another recipe here too-except I would not put all that sugar in there http://glutenfreegirl.blogspot.com/2007/01/sweetness-of-domesticity_12.html

Close up of whole grain blueberry muffins in white muffin cups on a silver cooling rack

and here is a recipe using pastry whole wheat http://flavordiva.com/2009/08/25/whole-grain-blueberry-muffins/

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