Saturday, October 31, 2009

Nesting Holiday




Even nesters need a day off. So today instead of my houskeeping checklists I decided to curl up on the couch and practice my knitting...


You rest up and live to nest another day...

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Creepy Crawly Pie


It's baaaacck!

This month's theme: Creepy Pies

My pie may be seen by some gardeners as an insult. Worms are great for soil and a good sign that it's getting better. But ALOT of worms are creepy.

So my pie this month is Creepy Crawly Pie...

The biggest surprise in this pie is that it's not chocolate as the dirt would imply it's banana pudding filling. Two reasons: I didn't want to throw away overripe bananas and I love chocolate covered bananas.

This is a great combination.






First I made a blancmange (see below for recipe)





Then I added 2 large mashed up bananas




Pour into Graham cracker shell and refridgerate overnight




Then add crushed up chocolate sandwich cookies and gummy worms




Voilà!

And as always make sure to visit our blog: http://thegreatbigpiebakeoff.blogspot.com/ to see more Pie Bakeoff participants and visit these founding members:

RecipeGirl
Inn Cuisine
The Good Mood Food Blog
Family Friends and Food



-- Posted from my iPhone

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Girl Walks Into a Convention Center...

Since my knitting class is at 6 p.m. today - in which I will have lots of cool stuff to report, I thought I would recount a funny story today which always makes me wonder how I ended up in Chattanooga from Palm Beach Gardens, FL..... I dedicate this post to my best friend who is having a rough week at work. Hope this story brings a laugh to your Cubefarm...

Girl walks into a convention center (yes that girl was me today) going to set up for our Company quarterly luncheon. I was driving the AV side today so I was there a little early. We weren't in our usual room and I wasn't sure if I was going in the right direction. Of course, I walk past a convention of nerdy type know-it-all guys and one of them has to worry about what I'm doing.

Know it all Guy with firm grasp of the obvious: Who are you looking for?
Me: I'm looking for my meeting
Know it all Guy with firm grasp of the obvious: Oh...Maybe its down there - pointing in the direction I'm already walking
Me: Yeah thanks (insert rolled eyes)

So I don't see it and I decide to walk back to the customer service station.

Know it all Guy with firm grasp of the obvious: Maybe you should go to the customer service station
Me:  Nothing I just breeze by...Insert fumes over head

I walk up to the Customer Service desk:

Me: Could you tell me where the Krystal meeting is?
Customer Serivce Man:  Turns head and spits out HUGE wad of dip/tobacco that evidently he had in his cheek then looks at paper and says "Its room 13"
Me:  Gaping mouth/Eyes wide..."Yeah thanks"  Walks away amazed she chose to reside in this city. And wondering what Customer Service really means in today's world.

Nice....Really nice....

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Kiss Concerts, Bubble Baths & Placemats

While my husband was off doing this:


I got to take a bubble bath and finish my placemats from my last sewing class....





Ahhh behold the power of alone time...Tomorrow will begin a new segment called Knitting Class! My best and I will take our first knitting class and report back in all the details!

This should be interesting.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Creamy Mushroom Soup Feeds The Soul

It's been a busy weekend....Lots of Pumpkin Carving, cooking, cleaning and baking... I'm exhausted once again but finished it off with an amazing soup.

For once I really felt that it was seasoned perfectly and the flavors were spot on...




Creamy Mushroom Soup
1 med onion
1 1/2 quarts Chicken Soup
2 bags frozen organic mushrooms
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tbsp dried Rosemary, Basil, Parsley
Grated sharp white cheddar

Caramelize the diced med onion. Add mushrooms and broth. Add dried herbs and bring to a boil. Reduce and let simmer for about 45 minutes.

In batches transfer soup to blender and purée until smooth. Finish off with heavy cream.


Add grated cheddar and serve.



-- Posted from my iPhone

Tatooed Pumpkin

So after my pumpkin carving adventures on Saturday, I decided to use my spare pumpkin to do another Krystal burger inspired carving...

I dub this:
Famous Krystal Burger Ink...



In normal daylight..


Now it's time to clean up pumpkin guts because this one was a bleeder....

-- Posted from my iPhone

Cinnamon Blueberry Griddlecakes or Pancake Spectacular

It's Sunday!!! To combat the chilly temps outside I decided to make Griddlecakes (as Fanny Farmer calls them) but As Fall and Thanksgiving approaches I wanted the taste of cinnamon with blueberries (my favorite especially in pancakes) so I modified the recipe.




It's a keeper in my portfolio...

3/4 cup milk
2 tbsp melted butter
1 egg
1 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp sugar
3 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup blueberries

Combine wet and dry ingredients separately and combine.

After you pour pancake batter into the skillet add blueberries and push into the batter. You get the best distribution of blueberries this way...Really.


-- Posted from my iPhone

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Pumpkin Sliders

No pressure or anything...

I mentioned in my last post about the pumpkin templates the Krystal Company emailed out to our database yesterday. I promised my coworkers and boss that I would take one of the templates home this weekend and execute.


It's pretty intricate and I was pretty confident I could do it. So I bought two pumpkins (yes I planned for a backup) and commenced carving...


And carved ....


And carved some more...



And now for the reveal...



A different view...


Last one...


If you squint your eyes and tilt your head you can totally see a Krystal burger.

Really.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Friday, October 23, 2009

Pumpkin Carving!!


I may not have ever mentioned this but I work for Krystal - yes... small...square...burger purveyor of the South.  I manage our Interactive & Online Initiatives as well as Sales Analysis - (re: numbers junkie). Our agency came up with some great Pumpkin Carving templates that went out in our email today.

This is what I"ll be attempting to carve this weekend. I'll be sure to post the results however funny they are... But in the end I will still have homemade roasted pumpkin seeds. So its all good...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bada Bing!

I decided to take a note from the Sopranos playbook and make a staple that I haven't in awhile...

Chicken Parmesean with a side of penne....Let's eat!!!


-- Posted from my iPhone

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Poor Man's Garlic Bread and Surprise Cake Recipes

I've been under the weather the past couple of days and thankful for lasagna leftovers...To go along with this I chopped up fresh garlic mixed in butter, spread on Ciabatta roll and broiled in the oven. It's my poor man's garlic bread...





In other news, my hubby took a piece of his birthday cake-Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Mousse Filling. She couldn't believe how great it was....where did I get said recipe???





Thanks to the Hershey R & D department!!!





-- Posted from my iPhone

Monday, October 19, 2009

Embroider Your Heart Out

I'm a little under the weather today after overdoing it this weekend. So while I recouperate I thought I would show you the status of one of my new embroidery projects.

While Im so excited about my recent sewing projects...












I've also taken up embroidery too. The great part is you can mix the two and create some beautiful projects. Here is how I'm doing so far...





The other great part? Sitting on the couch watching TV and working on this...just sayin...


There are tons of great embroidery patterns out there, Sublime Stitching being the most inventive. I have some on order. Very cool....







The possibilities are endless...

-- Posted from my iPhone

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Birthdays, Weddings & Projects

This has been quite a weekend...

Today is my husbands birthday. And to honor the day of his birth plus his love of Star Wars I ordered some special cookies from Doughmesstic- (www.doughmesstic.com) a fellow blogger and talented baker. If you haven't visited her Etsy shop you need to!





After that we had a wedding to attend for my husband's employee, Thomas Crocker.












Add in some sewing projects... I found a great idea for fabric scraps from the blog - Simplify (http://camilleroskelley.typepad.
com/) where you piece together scraps and sew them onto flour sack towels... Here is my take!













Then throw in some lasagna and birthday cake baking...













And you've got one tired girl. I can't believe I'm starting a new week. Sigh...

-- Posted from my iPhone




Thursday, October 15, 2009

The trials and tribulations of placemats


I'm always getting these great ideas. Like taking an additional sewing class when I have way too much going on at work/home.

I have a problem with doing less you see...

After hearing from the Lowes repair man that he couldn't install a new back door because the entire frame was crooked and needed to be gutted...I forgot to bring my electric cord to my sewing machine. (silly me)

Of course I didn't realize said cord was missing...until I got to class. Score...

They were nice enough to give me a loaner that broke when I tried to use it. I then got another one that had bobbin issues. I had given up until someone else in class let me use their machine.

These 4-sided placemats are the result...I love them so much I just wish I got have enjoyed the process. Luckily I have 3 more sets to make on my own.
















-- Posted from my iPhone

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

My Secret Sauce Revealed!




No...not really a secret but I am always getting requests for this recipe from friends.

There is a long history of this recipe. My mother's grandfather came over from Italy through Ellis Island. Her father's parents also came from Itay which makes me 3rd generation Italian.

My mother tells the story of the day before her wedding, her mother teaching her to make the family tomato sauce recipe. She scribbled furiously all the details on an index card.


Other stories included when there was no money for meat in the sauce they would add pamesean cheese for flavor.

I took this classic meat sauce recipe and developed it into a marinara.

The real secret? The great tip to good tasting sauce is sugar (like most things)

Here is my family's recipe. It makes a large pot of sauce. Divide it in thirds (gallon Ziploc bags) and freeze 2/3 of it.

3 - 28 oz cans Tomato Puree
1 - 28 oz can Crushed Tomato
1 cup red wine
1 large onion - diced
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp dried oregano
2 tbsp dried basil
2 tbsp dried parsley
1 tbsp dried rosemary
1tsp red pepper flakes
8 tbsp sugar
2 tsp salt
1/2 cup pamesean cheese

Sweat the onions and garlic in olive oil. Then add the cans of puree and crushed tomato and stir. Then fill each can halfway with water and add to the pot. Add spices, sugar and wine.

Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for about 2 and a half hours. Add the parmesean and serve with your favorite pasta.

For a meat sauce (and the original recipe) replace cheese and fry up a pound of Italian sausage, meatballs and 3 pounds of country style ribs. Add to sauce once it's come to a boil and leave until the sauce is finished.

This is my heritage... a la familia!!

-- Posted from my iPhone

Monday, October 12, 2009

A Virtual Quilting Bee? Who Knew?!







I'm new to the whole crafting, sewing, embroidery, knitting arena. But I have to say that nothing has helped me more than the blogosphere of amazing creative women in which I have been able to see all the great ideas they have and have inspired me to.....try...

Now we've seen my first take on the tote bag and potholder. Not bad but consider that on Flickr alone there are Virtual Quilting Bees? Huh? Need more information to compute? Well so did I...

These are groups of social netoworks of women who every month direct the other group members to make a certain design of different quilt blocks and then everyone sends her all the blocks and she has enough for an entire quilt. AMAZING! Who knew technology and the internet could take something as old school as a Quilting Bee and put a new spin on it.

There are also entire scads of embroidery designs on Flickr that different people upload to share their ideas...

If you are interested please go to Flickr and type in Embroidery and Virtual Quilting Bee and prepare to be amazed....I am..

Here are some Links I found as well:

Block Party
Sew Connected
Tallgrass Prairie Studio - A favorite blog and the place I found all this infomation out...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Stone Crabs, Sewing & Sox!

Well I'd like to take a moment of silence for the Bosox who in old school style lost in a come from behind win to be swept by the Angels...



The Stone Crabs we had last night helped us take it better methinks.

We normally would order them from Joe's in Miami for special occassions but I found them at Greenlife and decided to surprise Toby (his favorite)



We also served the up with some Asian style carrot slaw






And in sewing news...

I tried out a smaller project as my first one post-sewing class by trying to make a fancy potholder.





Not bad but this is going to take some practice... I could be wrong but I don't think that pot-holders are supposed to be trapezoidal in shape...

I'll have plenty of time to do that since we won't be watching the Sox...

-- Posted from my iPhone

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