Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sunday Stitches: Together

I finished the project I was working on last week. I can't remember exactly when I started this piece, but it went very quickly -- I think it took me 2 weeks or so.

This is a Heart in Hand design stitched over 2 on 32ct Amber linen with over-dyed threads.

It is a mix of green and pinky-purple colors; the letters are dark brown.

Right now I'm thinking I'll probably frame it in a dark brown wooden frame with maybe a pink or purple mat, but I usually change my mind once I get to the framer's and look at all the options.

I have my next project picked out -- a Christmas piece. The supplies are ordered, but I haven't received them yet.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Tales of the Tail: A Strange Definition of Comfortable

He has the entire house to find a place to lay down. And yet he always chooses the most uncomfortable looking spots.

Curled around the laptop, even though the entire other end of the love seat (not to mention the entire other couch) is free.

Spine curved backward around the leg of the loveseat.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Best of Both Worlds

Two truths:

(1) Brownies are my favorite food of all times. Notice that I did not limit that statement to "desserts" but included all categories of food.

(2)The best part of making chocolate chip cookies is eating the raw batter. Amirite?

This recipe combines the best of both worlds, in a sugar-shock inducing way.

It starts with a pretty basic brownie recipe...melted unsweetened chocolate.

Butter (lots) and brown sugar...

Some other steps that I forgot to capture and then voila! hot, fresh brownies come out of the oven.

Once the brownies are baked, then make the chocolate chip cookie dough that goes on top of the brownie. That's right...brownie on bottom...cookie dough on top.

I'll pause for a moment while you absorb the deliciousness of this situation.

Do you now fully understand how good this is going to get? Okay, let's continue.

Sugar, butter, vanilla, a little milk, flour, and mini chocolate chips. (No eggs, so you're safe on that front.)

Then spread on top of the cooled brownies.

Refrigerate for a while before cutting.

I was smart enough to make these to bring for game night at a friend's house, so I packed them up right away before they had a chance to tempt me too much. I was really too full from eating the leftover cookie dough batter to be too tempted. I showed tremendous self-restraint and put them back in the fridge without sampling one.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Food We Ate on Summer Vacation

Last week BD and I spent a few days on Hilton Head Island, SC for summer vacation.

One of the nice things about staying in a condo on vacation is having access to a full kitchen, so you don't have to go out for every single meal. But it just wouldn't be vacation if we didn't go out at least a few times!

One night we went out to a nice dinner at Alligator Grille.

We split a sushi roll for an appetizer. The service was very slow, but it was worth the wait. This was a Po Boy roll -- fried oysters and mixed veggies -- excellent! There was also an Alligator Roll that sounded very tasty. If you've never had alligator meat (comes from the tail) you don't know what you're missing!

I had bone-in chicken breast with mushroom truffled whipped potatoes and grilled asparagus.

BD had the filet with potato puree, grilled veggies, and veal glaze.

One night we ordered takeout pizza from New York City Pizza.

This was Mario's Mexican pizza -- steak, refried beans, red onions, jalapenos, and avocado.

This one was a margherita pizza -- roma tomatoes, garlic, mozzarella, and basil.

(Yes, we ordered 2 pizzas for 2 people. Notice that I didn't post a picture of how embarrassingly little pizza was left after we ate!)

One morning we tried Flamingo's Doughnut Cafe for an indulgent breakfast.

I had the House Special -- 2 doughnuts topped with sliced bananas and strawberries, whipped cream and drizzled with chocolate.

BD had 2 custom made doughnuts -- on the left is strawberry glaze topped with white chocolate chips; on the right is maple glaze topped with pecans, cinnamon/sugar, and honey drizzle.

The worst part of vacation is coming home to the realization that I can't eat doughnuts for breakfast and pizza for supper everyday. BOO.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

What is This...A Food Blog??

(Everyone that knows me in real life is laughing hysterically at the idea of me writing a food blog!)

With jobs that we don't leave until well after 5pm and a 35 minute commute, the slow cooker is my friend. I need food to be ready quickly when we get home, or we resort to picking up take out every night. Either that or we end up grazing on weird combinations of whatever we can rustle up out of the fridge/pantry.

Yesterday I threw 3 ingredients into the slow cooker that yielded a delicious result.

1# of stew meat plus a can of french onion soup and a can of cream of mushroom (yes, the dreaded "cream of"...apologies to my sister...) for 5 hours on low.

Food doesn't actually look that appetizing when it is in the slow cooker, does it?

Cooked some egg noodles quickly as soon as we walked in the door.

And, supper's on the table in 15 minutes. (A quick steam of green beans, tossed with lemon juice and black pepper made a nice side...)

Nest Watch 2011 -- Update

I am sorry to report that the eggs in the Robin's nest on our front door wreath appear to be abandoned. We haven't seen the mama bird in over a week. None of the eggs have hatched, and it is well past their 14 day incubation period.

I'm not sure if there was too much human activity around that door, or if something happened to the mama bird or what.

Monday, July 25, 2011

S'mores Cheesecake

Or, as I like to call it, A Little Slice of Delicious.

Actually, I'm not a huge fan of cheesecake. It is always so rich that I can only take a few bites -- and that's saying something, coming from me.

However...I do like s'mores. So when I saw this recipe I thought I'd give it a shot.

(Plus, it gave me an excuse to buy a springform pan!)

So now, without further aideu, I present...S'mores Cheesecake:

It has a graham cracker crust.

It has milk chocolate cheesecake.

It has marshmallow topping.

It has a very delicious taste.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Chicken Salad

I am a fan of chicken salad. I especially love it in the summer as a light but filling meal on a hot day. Recently BD's co-worker brought in this version and shared the recipe with me.

You start by poaching the chicken -- onion, carrot, celery, fresh parsley and thyme.

After the chicken was poached, cooled, and diced you add in celery, green onion, fresh dill and parsley.

Light mayo, dijon mustard, lemon juice, salt, and pepper make up the dressing.

Mix the dressing into the chicken and refrigerate to let the flavors combine.

We ate this on Ritz crackers and really enjoyed it. It made plenty for a meal for 2 plus leftovers.