Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Non-food post! In appreciation of the Eclipse release today I thought I would throw this post up. This is a set of the four Twilight Book Covers that I painted and gave to a very sweet Gal that watches mine and my mom's pups when we are out of town. They are not awesome..... but I am quite proud! Most proud of the one with the hands. These are small flat canvases. The last one is one I painted at Sips and Strokes and gave to my bestie Maiben!
Yay! It is time to giveaway the awesome kitchen stamp kit.
Monday, June 28, 2010
Just got back from Becca's Bachelorette Bash in Foley/Gulf Shores AL. It was so much fun! The cookies were well received! : ) Chilton County Peaches: On the way to the beach we took 82 so that we could go through Chilton County and get some peaches to put on the waffles I was making for Saturday morning. There are 6 peach stands in a row on that row and we stopped at Paw Paw's Peaches. They are $8 for a large basket and they said they are the biggest and best tasting since 1994. Unfortunantly the peaches weren't ripe until the last day of the trip, but they were delicious! Still have several left... I see some peach ice cream and some peach pancakes coming my way!
I forgot to take a picture but I have a mickey mouse waffle maker and a Cinderella waffle maker and I made waffles for the girls! Love them! I got mine at Tuesday Morning a few years ago on super sale but you can find them online. The cinderella's are twice as big as the mickeys.
Taylor made us some homemade Bloody Mary's with Dill Pickled Okra and Pickled Baby Green Tomatoes! Delicious! She made this trip possible!
On the way back home, we stopped by a really cute cajun restaurant in Foley, AL called Les Roux. They had a great Sunday Brunch going on and I had to order their Eggs Benedict with spicy grits. Very tasty. If you don't want a traditional Island Waffle Beach fare or Cracker Barrel for breakfast, I highly recommend this place! Very fast service, friendly staff..... just wished they hadn't sat the table full of almost deaf octogenarians yelling about their their intestinal problems to each other next to us!!!! They didn't respond to my "hello there are other people sitting around you stare"- Ewww!
Click the Picture to enlarge. Visit their website: http://www.lesroux.net/index.asp
Thursday, June 24, 2010
I am headed to a bachelorette party this weekend at the beach and this is my contribution! Classic rolled sugar cookies with royal icing. I think they turned out very cute! I baked some other more risqué and hilarious cookies but thought that the blog was not a good place to show them off. : )
I wrapped them up individually in treat bags and I think they look almost professional. Used a Wilton featherweight icing bag with coupler and two tips to do these. My first attempt at actually trying to ice something fancy! I am so proud!
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Just wanted to share my fun new toy. Our local Thai restaurant uses garnishing knives on most of the veggies to make them extra pretty and I wanted to try one. This one works very well and I got it at TJ Maxx for $3.99. An added bonus of this knife is that when you brown veggies in the skillet it makes them look like they were grilled. Our apartment complex doesn't allow outside grills so I am loving this!
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Our engagement party: What a great looking crew! We forgot to take a group picture until much later in the night so this picture is missing a few people. :( Delicious food, tasty wine and beer, lots of friends, and cute cuddly puppies..... perfect night!
How cute is this invitation that my friend Anna made??!! The champagne cork at the top was cut out of thin cork board
I'm sticking the party pics into this post and some of the recipes in the next post later today. So much fun! We feel so loved by our friends! Everybody brought a bottle of wine or fun beers and some of the girls made awesome treats! I didn't get enough pictures as I feel several pictures are missing.
Some of the food: my blue cheese crackers up front, bacon/almond/parsley stuffed baked brie in puffed pastry, sausage stuffed jalapeno poppers, cocktail sausages, fruit pizza, baked bacon cheese crackers.
Becca's Heath Bar and Chocolate Cake with Coffee Trifle
My Blue Cheese Crackers: Used Ina Garten's Recipe.... turned out more like Blue Cheese Cookies than Crackers and also made my apartment smell like Blue Cheese for 24 hours. They were delicious; however, I really don't know if I will make them again anytime soon. Super stinky!
So pretty! Tiffany's Sugar cookie crust with cream cheese icing, fresh fruit, and a jello sauce! Yummy!
Becca's Bacon Crackers: So delicious, they were gone quick!
Kelsey's Spicy Sausage Jalapeno Poppers: So spicy and yummy!
Anna's (other Anna) Awesome Stuffed Baked Brie
Closeup of all the yummy goodness stuffed in the brie
Do we look like our pets?????? Hahaha! I think we do in a way! Kelsey, Me and Becca with Lily Belle, Lucy Lynn, and Kaiser Bonecrusher. I just have to share...Kaiser's brother's name is Zeus Soulcrusher, how cute are those names!!!!
Friday, June 18, 2010
Tuscaloosa Estate Sale: 1 silver plated cracker tray($2) , 1 silver and clear glass beaded clutch bag ($4), 1 abalone-esque button necklace ($2)
Tonight our friends are throwing us a wine and cheese engagement party! Even though I am we are not required to bring anything since we are the guests of honor, I really want to make Ina Garten's Blue Cheese and Walnut round crackers. I will have to put them in this newly acquired cracker tray! Stay tuned for pictures of the party!
Thursday, June 17, 2010
FISH TACOS WITH SPICY DILL SLAW for 2
2 tilapia fillets cut in half
8 small corn tortillas
1/4 head of green cabbage shredded
3 tablespoons light mayonnaise
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp cracked black pepper
1/2 tsp dill
1 and 1/2 tsp Cholula Mexican spice rub
fresh lime juice
sliced avocado and/or tomatoes
Combine tilapia with 1 tsp of the Cholula and cook until done. Squeeze fresh lime juice over the fish. I used a George Forman Grill for 4 min. Combine the rest of the spices and the mayo together and then add the cabbage to make a slaw. When I plate these up I used two corn tortillas per taco so that they stay together better. Add slices of avocado and/or tomato when plating.
DON'T FORGET TO COMMENT ON THE POST BELOW TO ENTER MY GIVEAWAY!
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Giveaway! Personalize Your Life Gift Set for the Cook! Changeable Self-Inking Stamp Set from Three Designing Women!
I'm so excited to present this giveaway to all my readers! Not too long ago I commented on a blog's giveaway to try to win a set of stamps from this cool company. I didn't win the giveaway but one of the designing women read my comment and saw my blog and really liked it. So I was sent a stamp with two changeable personalized stamps to use in my wedding stationary. I am going to use it on my Save the Date Invitations when I send them out toward the end of the summer.
I was also sent a really nice box set of stamps to giveaway on my own blog! This set is specifically for the cook and is valued at around $30. It comes with 1 self-inking stamper, 6 changeables stamp designs, 1 black ink cartridge, 12 stampables stickers, 12 stampables recipe cards and 6 stampable gift tags!!!!!!!!
Here is the company's website so that you can look at their other stamps, embossers, and stampables: http://www.threedesigningwomen.com/ProductCart/pc/viewcontent.asp?idpage=4 Note that this company does not sell directly to the public but sells to stores. They have stamp sets like the one above but they specialize in personalized stamps with Names and addresses etc. If you have need of one of these, I highly recommend them. Go to expressionery.com and you can order from their site. You can also use the three designing women's site to search for local stores in your area that carry their line.
I saw this ad in a Real Simple magazine recently:
Also, I saw this great display for the stamps in a store in Hartselle, AL:
To enter this giveaway contest: Make sure you are signed up on my blog as a follower (click the follow button above the list of my followers) and leave a comment on this post about what your favorite homemade food item is to giveaway to people as presents. I have two I like to giveaway to people: Southern Spicy Cheese Straws, Almond Christmas Tree Cookies (family tradition) made in a cookie press, and my new adventure for Christmas presents this year will be homemade Limoncello. I have picked this for comments because this stamp set is perfect to use for stamping recipe cards to give to friends or to stamp paper tags to put on baked goods to sell or giveaway.
Here is one of the two stamps I received! So pretty!
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Here is another post about my wedding plans. Sorry if I am boring the food lovers. As you can tell by my blog, I LOVE antiques!!! So it only seems natural to make several aspects of my wedding look antiqued! : ) I really love mercury glass, but of course collecting vintage mercury glass is waaaaaay too expensive for me. I have read several wedding blogs that have used mercury glass in their decorations and many people say they rent different mercury glass votives and candle sticks from rental places, florists or wedding planners. I looked into this and to rent each piece it can be anywhere from 2-15 dollars! Outrageous! So my mother and I have been on a several week quest to find affordable new mercury glass looking pieces to use. I wanted to get a few of different types so it looks like a smörgåsbord of different candles. So far we have found 11 different affordable types and got a few of each. They range from costing 50 cents to $12.99. Any we found over that we didn't buy. Sources: TJ Maxx, Marshall's, Pier One, Old Time Pottery and Big Lots (had the most).The great thing about these is that we are splitting them in half after the wedding to use as our Christmas decorations. The vase on the back row far right is a silver plated mint julep cup. I wanted to use them for holding the bridesmaid's bouquets and to use them as some centerpieces. Other centerpieces will be placed in old silver plated teapots and champagne buckets. Note to family members reading the blog: if you have old silver plated teapots and champagne buckets I would love to borrow them for a day next April!!! : ) To rent mint julep cups it cost around $8 a piece, to buy six of them at Tuesday Morning they were $9 a piece, I think I did the right thing. Now I can't wait to make real mint juleps in mint julep cups!! I need to remember to register for a muddler to crush the mint leaves.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Yay! We have a winner! The web generator really did have a min of 1 and a max of 6 but no matter how many times I tried to copy it, it always said 100. The true first result was a 4! The fourth comment is Bo from Bo's Bowl. Go check out his blog! It is awesome and he has a huge following and awesome recipes. He is a fellow Alabamian food blogger! http://www.bos-bowl.com/ Please send me your mailing address at Rich010@bama.ua.edu!
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Tuscaloosa Farmer's Market Produce from Snow's Bend Farm. How pretty does that Rainbow Chard look? I made some grilled squash and some pickled beets.
Staying in Huntsville for the week dog sitting. Staying in Huntsville really makes me wish that Tuscaloosa had a Earth Fare, Fresh Market, or Whole Foods store. Ate this Mediterranean sampler platter for $6 from Earth Fare! Yum Yum !
Cute Pups! Princess (my "stepsister" 14 year old part Husky), Rosie (my "sister"16 year old Toy Poodle mix), and Lucy (my "baby" Norfolk).
Hard to think that my Rosie was apricot colored and black splotched when we first got her. Now she is an old gray lady. Never seen a dog change colors as much as her. She wandered up on my grandmother/aunt's porch 15 years ago after being attacked by something and living in the woods for a while. For years she would snap flies out of the air out of habit. Lucy comes close with the color changing. Lucy had red hair when we first got her from the humane society which is partly why we named her Lucy. Now she is white and blonde with just a little bit of red left on her ears. We figure the color change must have happened because she was so malnourished.
Lucy got groomed yesterday for the first time ever! I usually hand trim her. If you live in the Huntsville area and need a groomer you should consider Goin' To The Dogs and Cats Mobile Pet Grooming. They are a bit more expensive than some but they are definitely worth it! When they are done grooming, they give you a really cute report card that tells how the dog did and what services they performed. My mom's two pups are very old and don't like to travel and get very nervous at other groomer's. These people are sooo sweet and love pups and the pups never have to leave home! They park their decked out RV in your driveway and do all grooming right there. Lucy was soooo happy when she ran in the house, she couldn't quit smiling for a long time. Robyn and Tab did a great job! http://www.groomerhsv.com/index.html
These two items were made for a potluck graduation party I went to the other day and am just not getting around to putting them up. The coleslaw is perfect for picnics and grill-outs. The sausage pinwheels are perfect for breakfast, teas, and appetizers. I have been making both of these recipes since high school. I made the coleslaw and my friend Anna made the pinwheels.
1/2 head of green cabbage shredded
1/2 head of purple cabbage shredded
2 carrots grated
4 stems green onion finely sliced
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds
1 package of ramen noodles, broken up and toasted
1 tablespoon sesame seeds toasted
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons peanut oil
I prefer to buy whole cabbage and slice it myself instead of buying packaged pre-shredded coleslaw mix. It is fresher, cheaper and you get a lot more of it. If you are in a hurry, the package kind is fine. Mix last four ingredients together first, and then toss all ingredients together. This is best if allowed to sit in the refrigerator for an hour before serving. Eat within two days or the cabbage breaks down from the vinegar. There are several variations of this recipe on the internet. Some people like to use the ramen seasoning packet that comes with the noodles. I have done that before and it is good, just different.
1 roll hot sausage
2 rolls low fat crescent roll dough
1 container 1/3 fat cream cheese (bring to room temperature)
Brown and finely chop the sausage in a skillet. Drain on paper towels. Roll your sheet of crescent dough out onto wax paper. Luckily, they now make crescent roll dough without the perforated creases to separate them. If you can only find a classic roll.... pinch all the seams together to create a solid sheet. Spread half of the cream cheese mixture evenly over the dough. Once cooled, sprinkle half of the browned sausage over the roll. Using the wax paper as a guide, roll the dough length wise tightly and seal the edges. Wrap the wax paper around it and twist the ends closed. Store in the freezer for about 10 minutes in order to stiffen the dough so that it can be cut easily. Cut into pinwheels and bake in a 350* oven for 12-15 minutes until brown (this depends on how small of pinwheels you cut, I cut large ones for breakfast and very small ones to serve as appetizers). Once they have baked, use a spatula to immediately remove them from the pan, they can stick if they sit too long. The hot sausage and the cooling cream cheese go great together! This is probably one of my most requested recipes and it is soooooooooooooo easy to make.
This pinwheel can be made into several recipes using the same method. Here are some of my favorites. You can also make these with puffed pastry just as easily as crescent dough.
1. roast beef slices, sharp cheddar cheese, and prepared horseradish sauce
2. chive and onion cream cheese, swiss cheese, and sliced ham
3. roasted chicken slices, provalone, and pesto or sun dried tomatoes
4. cream cheese, gorganzola, chopped walnuts
5. spinach and feta