Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Drinks With The Neighbors

I had a small epiphany yesterday. I had decided awhile back that I was doing my going away party for myself wrong. I was so busy getting things in and out of the oven that I did not mingle as I would have liked. I talked it over with a couple people and decided to change my menu's to have apps that are easily room temperature. I have been scoping them out on line and in cookbooks.


Last night I had a small cocktail party for neighbors and decided to try out my new non stress entertaining. I decided on only four appetizers, along with celery sticks and blue cheese, and the mandatory chocolate covered almonds and mixed nuts. I had everything completely done and for once, enjoyed the ring of the doorbell. It was amazing. I just looked up if the way I used epiphany was okay and not religious like I normally think of it and the last of four descriptions was a moment of sudden revelation or insight.   I think this qualifies.


Two of the four recipes I used last night were Brie Puffs, which I make all the time and Bruschetta, which I make when tomatoes are good and/or in season.  They are both on Tommy Cooks.





This is the Blue Cheese Savory Cheesecake with the pear preserves and pecans.



This is a Ree Drummond recipe called Ham Salad in Endive Cups.  Click on them for a closer look.  Once again, sometimes the photo's come out so tiny and I have no idea why.  My sister is coming the end of the week and bringing me lots of stuff I forgot from home and one is my Nikon camera.  I am going to start carrying it around again.  Anyway,  the appetizer tasted great but there is something that get's tired looking a short time after they are plated.  It's like the endive kinda melts up a bit when it hits air.  I will have to thing long and hard about making it again.

I would love to hear from all of you and I would like you to send me your recipes that do not need to be heated up to stand on their own at a cocktail party.  I am waiting to hear from you!!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Post Party

We all had a cocktail party on Sunday evening in an antique mall. Everyone was to bring a appetizer or a dessert. I decided to try something new that didn't have to be served hot and came up with this recipe from Ree Drummond called Tiny Tomato Tarts.

   

It's very simple.  Thaw and roll out puff pastry and cut it in rounds the same size as your sliced roma tomatoes.  The pastry needs to be docked (lots of fork stabs).   Onto the top of the round is pesto and on top of that the slice of roma with a touch of olive oil.  I baked them for 15 - 20 minutes at 400º until golden.  They were yum.



When I saw this photo I didn't know what it was for a minute.  My friend was gonna buy this mirror and I took a picture of it for her.  I didn't even realize that they were my legs.





We spotted this dress and it gave us an idea for a dress notion for us to make for the Carnivale the welcome club has in February.  We have tons of silk swatches from someone who donated them to



the modern guild and the bottom would be great looking somewhat like this.  People were eating and drinking and shopping!  What could be better; I know,  things not quite so old!!!!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Playing With Pears



I made this very adorable blue cheese cheesecake in the instant pot a couple days ago.
I had tasted it at Linda's recent Cause A Stir Kitchen Club when she did the instant pot meal.  I wanted to make the cheesecake littler so I made them in a 4" springform pan.  The recipe calls  for pear preserves and pecans to top it off.  Pear preserves didn't make my local Publix, but

 

pears did, so I bought then and when they were ripe I hunkered down and made preserves.



While I was doing the hated peeling, I put my jars in boiling water to prep for canning.

 

I cooked them down



and cooked them down a little more and



canned 12 jars.  It was like making music when I picked them out of the boiling water.  Their 'pop' was as if it were synchronized.  Music to my ears!!!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Hello Fresh

I have decided to try some of these home chef companies that deliver all the ingredients for a healthy and fun dinner. I am gonna try them all and decide what I will occasionally use as my service. I have done it twice so far and it's been pretty cool as G is getting involved. We started out with Hello Fresh.  I was originally disappointed because I got three dinners and one had rice and the other had sweet potato.  I loved the rice dish sans the rice and G was more than happy to have it. Apparently when I picked out what I wanted, they either ignored it or it didn't go through.  I have to admit I give G the job where he can't mess up or hurt himself, but it's been never in my 45 years of marriage that we did anything together in the kitchen, except maybe clean up or fight for turns at the Keurig.



Tonight we made Meatloaf a la Mom.  Here were the ingredients.  I minced the garlic and shallot and took the time off the stems and chopped them.  I had G peel the potato because I can no longer do that without effecting me the next day.  He was a trooper.



I large julienned the carrots and potatoes and tossed them in olive oil and s & p.  They went onto a foil lined half sheet pan and into a 450º oven.  In the mean time



G took the ground beef, along with panko breadcrumbs, thyme, shallot, and s & p.  He mixed that up and made small mini loaves.

 

The end result was as good as I think meatloaf can get, which is not the best because I would way rather have a thin hamburger wit all the fixings .  I made a light gravy out of shallots, thyme a beef base and flour and butter for the roux.  It was lively and good.

Next up is something that G and I don't like.  Unless it's great fries, I don't like sweet potatoes.  But we are gonna muddle through it, kinda like if I came to your house for dinner, I am the queen of pushing food around like it is the best thing I ever ate.  Ask my daughter.  She as pointed that out a time or two.

Thursday, November 09, 2017

The Petal Dance

This piece was made for a particular spot.  Click on it to see it bigger.  For some reason it came out real small.

 

 It measures 34" x 9 1/2".  I think it's very fun.  It's kinda like dancers!

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Miss Bella

Let's get back to Bella. She spent a good month of constantly
wearing her inner tube. I told people that she was loving the pool and the balls in it and I wanted her to be comfortable floating around. She fell in the pool when she was four months old and it was catastrophic. She has never had that problem for the next 11 years. She needed it, as a better method of not chewing on herself, due to a hot spot. It was supposed to be two weeks while on medication but she could not help herself.
 

 After a month we took it off her for her walks and when she was constantly monitored.

 

It's been a day and a half and so far so good.  She does want to be very, very close to me tho'.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

A Habit I Have

After completing 25 small bias petals, I decided to make a couple more 12 inches, one for my daughter and one for my sister.
   
They are very similar.

 

While catching up with Project Runway, I managed to get them faced and finished.  Now I am tackling a 36 inch long by 9 1/2 inch high quilt using most of the remainder of the petals.  I am making it to fit over the entrance in and out of the studio.

Monday, November 06, 2017

Who Knew? Tulle!

I have been working like a nut on these little bias petals which are between 2 and 4 inches wide and 6 to 8 inches high.

 

There is something I learned lately from Lenore that has speeded up the process of turning over the edges to have a clean line for sewing them down.



In all my years I have never heard of this.  I must have skipped school that day.   But what it is is putting the right side and a piece of tulle, bigger than the petal and sewing all around it, then slashing an opening in the center to turn and voila', it is a wonder.  I probably added overkill when I decided to whip stitch my opening closed, just to cut down in any complications when ironing.

I am on a roll.

Sunday, November 05, 2017

Inspire Sarasota



Yesterday I spent a good part of the day in a booth for our guild along with many many other groups for this get together called Inspire Sarasota.  It was pretty much showing quilts rather than recruiting new members to the guild.  The guild is pretty big to begin with!!!!  We met lots of nice people and saw lots of shows on various stages, including the children's cuban ballet, jugglers and roller skaters from the children's Sailor Circus and lots of other acts.

Before going back home I stopped off at Sur La Table for a couple ingredients I was out of.  I don't know why my vanilla photo is on the side.  It wasn't when I took the photo.

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I also wanted to buy some pizza making supplies and I was disappointed at the lack of accessories.  I have been checking on line for heat proof gloves for me but they seem to be all one size and the ones that G have are way too big for me.  Back to the drawing board!!!!
 

Friday, November 03, 2017

Instant Pot Paradise

My friend Linda had November for her month to host Cause A Stir Kitchen Club.  She chose Instant Pot as her theme.  She made all the food in Instant Pot's.  I only took a couple pictures but it was very good and informative.

Two appetizers were made; roasted red pepper hummus




and blue cheese cheesecake.

 

It was topped with stone cherry jam and pecans.  For the main course were vegetable medley, mashed potatoes and

 

chicken stroganoff.  For dessert was bread pudding with a rum sauce and caramel cheesecake, which were both beautiful and I am mad that I didn't take pictures.

Linda borrowed several pots from her friends and daughter.  The rumor is that they are going for $59.95 at Walmart (that is the 6 quart size) but I already have that size so I am waiting for cyber Monday to get myself an 8 quarter.

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

Post Halloween

Last night, right before it was time for trick or treaters, G decided to make the receiving of candy a little more fun for the kids. He wanted to have a bowl of numbers, from 2 to 5, and have them folded up so the number was unrecognizable. As things go, I had a little dilemma doing the number's because not an hour before I uninstalled my older version of Microsoft Office for Macs in order to install a newer version. I use Word for such things as doing the numbers and now I no longer have it. I am waiting for the company I bought the update to contact me because I can't open the download. It's always something. I finally found an application called Pages that came with my laptop and

 

managed to type out the numbers.

 

So when the kid came up to the table ourside where G was sitting, he had them take a number and that is the amount of pieces of candy they could get.  It was a huge success.  We decided that next Halloween we would get or make a spinner wheel where they pick their number that way.  Just a little something!

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Monday Monday


Enjoy the holiday!

I used yesterday to finish the two newest projects I started.



I had to make 4 more i-cords for the octopus tentacles.  It was a quick finish as the hat was already done and sewn down the back.  Now I have to find a little head to wear it.

 

I added a bit to these little 'petals' to turn under and sew down.  I auditioned several different background fabrics and ended up with this purple commercial.  Then I quilted it and faced it.  Can you take a guess as to the finished size?

Monday, October 30, 2017

Baby Cakes



I decided to make cupcakes for my contribution to a Halloween party last night.  I made yellow cupcakes

 

and devil's food cupcakes.  These are both mini cupcakes.  I split the yellow cupcakes in half to become a hamburger bun.  The devil's food cupcake became the burger



I added liquid dye to frosting to replicate ketchup and yellow food coloring to look like mustard.

 

I used sesame seeds for the tops of the buns and



used food coloring to turn coconut green to act as lettuce.



They were a bit labor intensive but they were so darn cute

 

that I didn't care how long they took to make.  My fingers are still red from the food coloring!!!!

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Bias Strip Petals

Three of my fellow Modern Guild members, Linda, Jann and Lenore, decided to teach a class for anyone that wanted to join in, based on the bias strip petals that they found in The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters by Sherri Lynn Wood.




Here is a shot of the room the class was held in.  It was very long and narrow so I couldn't get everyone in.

 

These first two petal designs were done by Linda.  She worked very hard on her examples.

 

She even incorporated the Modern challenge fabric in one of them!

 

This was the example Jann did.

 

Lenore showen how she fractured a couple of her petals.

 

This is what I did in class.  Mine are very small as compared to the others, so that mine were around 4" wide and the other classmates were 10" or so.

 

Everyone was very creative in their petals.  We made the bias strips in an earlier class last week.

 

They are all so very different.

 

There is a learning curve in applying the bias strips to the center 'petal'.



You need to learn how much to stretch to make them smooth.  We experimented with having the center piece on the top when adding and on the bottom.  Everyone tried both ways and I ended up liking the center on the top when sewing and stretching right sides together.