Sunday, November 24, 2013

Busy, Bountiful & Bebe Beret'


   I do love autumns colors but they are slowly fading. She leaves some bountiful harvest which will become pies for my Thanksgiving table. I feel the holiday creep coming fast and furious but i was able to grab a few moments before the holiday creations begins and work on some projects. My Baby Beret' original design of mine. I am working on the pattern and it will work on getting it up here for you. Its so simple and well so chic, don't you think?? It whips up in no time fact in just one evening. Can't beat that!! I had to put down my Frosted Pumpkin Autumn sampler and have now switched to the Gingerbread Lane.I am loving it! You will have to wait ...I just cant bring my self to post anything Christmas related before Thanksgiving. I know in Blogland that may have to change some day.

Busy...yes we are one week away from my niece's baby shower which I am is what I created for her invitations...
Sweet aren't they. I got the image from Etsy at this shop...Lana Koopman. Such great stuff here...and with busy comes a quick meal ...Massamam Curry...A Thai favorite...again quick, easy and satisfying on a cold busy night! My mother in law brought me back a cook book and ingredients from one of her visits to Thailand when she was visiting  family of ours who lived in Bangkok for a time.
Vegetarian Massamam Curry...adapted from May Kaidee's cooking school
  • 1 can lite coconut milk
  • 1-2 tsp red chili paste 
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1-2 tablespoon of each light and dark soy sauce. I use healthy boy brand
  • Safflower oil..good for high heat cooking and healthier than canola
  • 2 tsp sugar raw
  • 1 onion
  • 1 chopped tomato
  • 1 package of extra firm tofu
  • fresh veggies, I used broccoli,string can use pumpkin,sweet potato(steamed first) or whatever you like
  • 1 lime   
Heat wok with oil add onion tomato chili paste curry and fry until can add some water if paste begins to burn add tofu and brown well... then veggies... saute until they start to sweet and soften just a touch... Add half of the coconut milk and 2 tbsp. of water...let it simmer and thicken a bit... now add soy sauces and sugar...then add rest of coconut milk and cook until it thickens and add a bit of lime juice... Serve over Jasmine rice cooked with ginger and coconut milk. 
  Saute 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh ginger with a tsp of butter ...add 2 cups rice and cover with a coconut milk/water mixture...I usually use one can coconut milk (lite) and a enough water to cover the rice... cook according to direction on the rice package. Serve immediately and enjoy!

I hope you all have a safe and wonderful holiday this week. I leave you with this buddhist saying ...

May you have a warm place to sleep and enough to eat 
May you be free from danger 
May you be at peace with whatever comes your way
May all beings be Happy and Free


PS...I'll see you after Thanksgiving with some holiday images...

Monday, November 11, 2013

Do you "Stoup"...Escarole and white bean.

I hear it happens ...Men who tell their wives that a soup just isn't enough for a proper supper...Enter the "Stoup".

A Stoup is a cross between a soup and a stew. I know not very hard to figure out. Yet A vegetarian stoup may be. So try this one's hearty and delicious And my hubby thinks its just enough for supper.
 However, if you have that man in your life that says otherwise a bit of sausage added should appease him.

 I served this sort of french onion style with melted Fontina cheese on top.

Now every time I say or think of  the word Stoup, my mind goes directly to the Salt& Peppa  song "Shoop" and I start humming and singing changing the Shoop with Stoup ! Now It  may be a bit risque of a song ..but you know what I am talking about if you were a teenager or young adult in the early 90's. Looking back its nothing compared to what is going on today! Wow i just sounded like I am 105 years old!

 Any how, as S&P start the song.."Here we go ...Here we go...Here we go again.....Ahh you make me want to  Shoop  Stoup!"

The Recipe: Escarole and White Bean Stoup
  • 1 onion
  • 3 stalks celery
  • 3 carrots
  • 3-4 potatoes cut in quarters (if they are on the smaller size I used golden potatoes) 
  • 2 bunches of Escarole cleaned thoroughly 
  • 2 cans white kidney beans or Cannelini 
  • Vegetable or Chicken broth
  • S&P
  • Fontina cheese
  • a good quality Italian Boule or crusty bread
  • Macaroni 1 lb , I used Ditalini or sometimes called tubetti.
Start with the Trinity (chopped carrots,onions & celery ) Saute in olive oil in your soup pot till they start to soften, add Potatoes and Escarole and Cannelini beans . Add your broth I would say 5 to 6 cups and season cook till the potatoes start to get tender. Now add the pasta uncooked directly to the soup. As the pasta cooks the starch it releases really thickens the soup up nicely. Stop cooking when the pasta is "Al dente" or firm to the bite.
Ladle into bowl or oven safe crock sprinkle with the grated Fontina Cheese ...melt and serve with bread. Enjoy!

 And if you want to hum along too... here is the video... Shoop by Salt & Peppa...I swear it adds to the recipe! (remember this video is a bit saucy..) but a very catchy tune ...

Be well and Be have ;-)

Blessing to those who serve our country to protect us and all beings around the world . Thank you to our Service Men and Women . 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Recipe..Butternut Squash Baked Ziti

 Ok here is the recipe, a few days late ...Sorry!!. It is a bit labor intensive...just a bit... but completely worth it I promise. So sit down, grab a cup of Joe, a cappuccino or tea and lets get started..

  Peel and cube your squash, drizzle with olive oil, S&P, and fresh sage leaves. Bake at 350 till tender.Meanwhile soak (very well!!!) and take off the stems of the Swiss Chard. Chop up the chard a bit to make the pieces smaller.
 Now saute roasted squash and chard together in a bit of olive oil. Set aside.

 Make the Besciamella sauce   this is a good recipe from Mario Batali. However, I add some grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese this. Meanwhile cook your Ziti. Remember salt the water well... this seasons the pasta.
 Make sure you leave it a bit Al'dente cause you are going to bake it as well. Pour Besciamella sauce over the pasta and mix.
 Now mix in the Squash and Chard mixture and season a bit more if necessary. Sprinkle with Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and bake at 350 till bubbly about 30-40 minutes.
This is a fabulous Fall dish. Comfort food at it's best! Tutti Mangia ...or Everybody eat!

Ingredients ...this is what I used you can scale it back or add accordingly.
  • 2 peeled and cubed Butternut Squash
  • 2 bunches of Swiss Chard washed thoroughly 
  • sage
  • Parmigiano Reggianio grated chesse
  • 1 and 1/2 pounds pasta ...I use Penne or Ziti
 Besciamella sauce...follow Mario's recipe but what you will need
  • Milk
  • Butter
  • Flour
  • Fresh Nutmeg
I hope you fiind this recipe this recipe to your liking. What are some of your favorite fall recipes?

Next recipe  on deck will be this "Stoup"...Escarole and Bean Stoup. Have a great nite!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Spooktacular October...

It was a Spooktacular October! So much so I had to condense the images. Beautiful fall weather, great recipes to share, some fun creations and of course All Hallows Eve!  How was your October?

I am sad to see October go, it was just wonderful! So where to start...ok lets go with the food!! I have two delicious recipes to share with you. One is a Butternut squash and Swiss Chard baked ziti. A bit labor intensive but worth. As well as a Escarole and Cannelini bean soup, served almost like a french onion soup with melted Fontina cheese. It was ...Legen....wait for it... dary. ( got to love Barnie from "how I met your mother"). Well, maybe not legendary but now it is one of my favorites! I am going to post the recipes this week as it would make this a ridiculously long post. Your welcome!

I made my first Mug rug which was very fun. I did some English paper piecing with diamonds and appliqued it right on the square, added some hand stitching (which was horribly sloppy cause I hadn't done it for long time..  if you don't use it you lose it!). I love the backing fabric which depicts Poe's "The Raven".

 I found some beautiful dark Amber vintage crystals and dressed them up with some Swarovski crystals and such and made ornaments. I also purchased some cross stitch Pdf's from The Frosted Pumpkin. So stinking cute!! You have to check them out! I was seeing them all over Flickr and finally found out where to purchase them.. I am going to start with Gingerbread Lane.

As for the home front...we have a new favorite book in the house "The day the Crayons quit" It is really a great book. We have to read it almost every night! The little man was the Iron Patriot for Halloween, cause we are huge RDjr fans in this house! It was a big deal this year as the little man got over his costume fear. He had a great night with his buddies trick or treating.

Now all the decorations are down and I am trying to not look to forward to December. There is still another great month of Autumn. I refuse to rush into Christmas ...well maybe I will just a wee bit!

Check back tomorrow for the recipes...Have a great week!

Be well,