Friday, December 30, 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The apple of my eye../Nothing do do about the New Year..

I have a few..Lucas..Max..Noah..Ollie..

Caro and Mimi..
I guess that makes..apples of my eye..s.

Materialistically..speaking though?
Williams-Sonoma..?When I go to Florida~It is a favorite place to go and peek..

I only bought one thing..I promise.



And how cute is it?

A mini pie press.


It is easy to use..
I did not follow their apple pie filling recipe..I just made my own..I cut extremely small pieces of apple.. added sugar..cinnamon..Cardamom..and a bit of flour..

Placed the filling in the press..sealed the edges w/ egg wash and baked..
Blueberry must be divine..raspberry too..This is something I will use again..Unlike my giant cupcake pan:)Takes less room also.
Just thought if Santa did not visit some of you..you could treat yourselves.
I even like their catalog.That's a gift in itself.Does this have anything to do w/ the New Year? Ok..maybe..mea culpa for the title:)
Why oh why don't we have one here?
I know why..I bet I do.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Monday, December 19, 2011

Soul Food #119~


In just less than 6 dodos as the boys would say..Christmas will be on our doorstep~
So far... a very different ...greenish one for us ..Hoping to have some white cover by the big day/night~Not just the sparse patches here and there..
Max ..4 ..is wearing the Santa's Helper apron that was bought for Ollie..
I can't show those photos because he started squirming and screaming when we tried to put him in it:)I have very funny photos..:)
We were baking tourtières.. his mom..Jacques and I.. and decided to make another little Christmas treat made w/ leftover tourtière pie dough..In French we call them "Pets De Soeurs"... Direct translation..Nun's Farts(Blush).(I really don't ever have a potty mouth)..And in French..we have called them that for years..so we don't wince at the words..we smile..
Max thought this was so funny..not that he knows what a nun is but he sure knows what the f word means..
We asked him to taste and he wouldn't..until his brother took a bite and loved them..it was not easy getting this photo..because all Max wanted to do was eat his treat:)

La Recette~
You roll out the leftover pie dough.. press brown sugar evenly all over the dough and roll.. either as a single roll or as palmiers.. slice, place on a parchment lined baking sheet and dot each w/ a small nob of butter..bake until sugar has melted and dough is cooked~

I have had time taking out ornaments..baking..reading,getting things ready,to think even more than usual.. if that is at all possible:)
While doing these every day things..


Gratitude for my family fills my heart first and foremost.
Few dear friends that never let go..or go..and come home:)
Seasonal friends that warm the heart~
Many many things..
But again this year I want to stress the importance of the friends I have made on this Wonderful World Of The Web~
The deep caring of some of you have meant the world to me this year.And prior years.
I love the fact that I have met some of you.
I love the fact that one friendship has lasted longer than some do or can.
I love the fact that young women my daughters ages are filled with love and compassion.
I love the fact that creative women try and make others shine instead of themselves~ They share their creativity..teach..watch..stand back and applaud..when the mentor..should be applauded.This is a generosity of spirit.
I love the way that in certain private e-mails..we wear our hearts on our sleeves,sharing advice,caring,kindness...or just a virtual ear.
I love that we get excited for new arrivals as in babies..sharing kid/pet/new home/old home shots.
I love that so many have not only known joy and can understand that life is not always a bowl of Mary Engelbreit cherries.
I love that some have only known joy and can sparkle our lives.
I love when I get an email out of the blue..that says:"I love your blog" could you tell me how to..
I love when my daughters read a post and say that it was cute..
Or that they call and ask me if such and such a recipe is on my blog:)That's why I started it:)
I love seeing life lived in Cannes,Australia,South Africa,New York,Paris,Singapore,the USA,Canada..etc ..
I love when I discover new ideas and get excited about someone's inspiration.
I love how a young woman can try and make a warrior out of me.
I love tender thoughts,reading:"I think of you."..Because I do too.
I am humbled and brought to tears when a religious gesture is made in Lyon on my behalf.
The same in South Africa..Imagine.

I am honored to have fun with you and to look forward to your visits.
I am grateful that if I need a friend..I am never alone.
You all have your great blogs I can peruse:)I can see where you have been, what you are up to..what your plans are..what you have learned,baked,loved,seen,done,photoed,made,created,experienced,written,accomplished,experienced~
Thank you.
You're all a Christmas gift to me..all year long.


This is my soul food for you today.
Du fond de mon coeur,je vous remercie~



Friday, December 16, 2011

Home Made~

I love Home Made things~
Food,crafts,wine,anything really..and this time of year is a great time to do some of these things..
I had some time..and a new tea to try..
..Chocolate and Mint~ It's so good..It is my second one from this company and they are exceptionally good.
Exceptionally good to bake by..and to soothe a Nana cold caught from Ollie..
I know you're not supposed to kiss sick kids with runny noses..But we..cannot resist.Pay the Piper Nana.




With exceptionally clean hands..I put my new stamp to the test..I had seen it offered in the UK..never here.I was happy to find one ap. 25 minutes away..

The cookies turn out very well..



I had bought some stamp/cutters at The Christmas Tree Shop by Wilton..and they just don't compare..this one works!

The recipe was found on Cooks .com..

La Recette~

HONEY STAMPED COOKIES
1/2 c. butter
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1/3 c. sugar
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp. honey
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Sugar (optional)
In a large bowl beat butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed about 30 seconds or until softened. Add about half of the flour. Add the 1/3 cup sugar, egg yolk, honey and vanilla. Beat until thoroughly combined. Beat or stir in the remaining flour.
Shape dough into 1-1 1/2 inch balls. Place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Using a floured cookie stamp or the floured bottom of a glass, flatten balls to 1/4 inch thickness. If desired, trim uneven edges from cookies with a round cookie cutter. If desired, lightly sprinkle cookies with additional sugar.

Bake in a 375 degree oven for about 6 minutes or until done. Cool on cookie sheet for 1 minute. Makes 24-36.


My notes:

My recipe did not make that many cookies..it made about 14..But this is a large stamp:)

I did add a touch of flour and baked ap.7 mins..
It's one of those cookies..where 1 minute makes a difference.
I pressed my stamp in sugar before stamping the dough

They are cute and good~Aren't they cute? It's not just me right?
Like the teas~

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Cranberry Ketchup~ A La DiStasio~

I just LOVE that show..Friday nights my favorite activity is watching her..her guests..the gorgeous cinematography..
She's so charismatic and many of her guests are also..

On this particular episode..there were some Christmas treats..

Turkey Tourte..looked wonderful...and they suggested serving it w/ a cranberry ketchup..
I knew I would try it the next day..I had everything on hand..



It's different..it's got Madras Curry in it..and you use your hand held motor blender..




La Recette~


1 onion chopped
1/3 cup of oil

10 cups cranberries
a generous pinch of salt
1 tablespoon of Madras Curry
2 cups of Maple Syrup..

Place all ings in a pot..bring to a boil..simmer ap 30 mins until skins pop.. Use your hand blender to purée..place in sterilized jars..

My notes.. I halved the recipe..My cranberries had been frozen..they had said it would be fine..it was..it didn't take 30 mins to cook..It bacme thick enough sooner than later and they popped sooner than later..
They suggest that you can pass through a sieve if you wish..I didn't..
I did hot water bathe my pots after~


This will be served as an accompaniement to my son-in-laws fabulous Turduckken(SP?) on the table..as a condiment really..it will work for tourtière also..a turkey sandwich etc..the curry gives a nice flavor~You don't need a lot~



Hope everyone likes it..Jacques did~

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Soul Food #118~And Rudolph~



We had the pleasure of looking after 3 of our little grandsons this weekend~
The littlest one ,Ollie..is quite the helper in the kitchen..insisted on vacuuming and doing the dishes... in his diaper no less..(cropped)..Loves climbing on chairs and playing in sinks..Yes their mom is a gentle soul.. who likes to keep him busy any way she can..:)

The older two..love crafts and building things and doing homework type activities..
I had collected many shark's teeth in Florida and decided that would be a neat activity for them to draw a beach scene.. complete w/ sharks and then we would glue the teeth..
I am so impressed w/ their talent..one shark is even eating a fish.. I said "every artist should sign their work and date it".
Imagine my surprise when Lucas(my Lulu) ,6.. wrote Décembre..and 2011..all by himself..
Yikes they grow up do fast~

For these 3 and Noah..I wanted a special little cookie for Christmas morning and had seen these everywhere on the net~


Notice I am not doing a full post..
Because..

Well they didn't turn out as I had expected..so Google them..Reindeer Cookies..and pick your options..

I decided on a peanut butter cookie recipe abounding..and look ...my reindeer are old and wrinkled:( They cracked ..

So I would opt for a different recipe next time..also I bought Tiny Twists pretzels in the US..they are bigger than I expected..:(

Many blogs said as soon as they come out of the oven press the antlers in..Mine kept falling~

I had started w/ one cookie..and thought I have mastered this..wrong..so enough mix made for many cookies..melting antlers and cracked faces..
I think I would stick to mice next year:)

All in the name of love..xx

For Ollie..Noah ,Max and Lucas.
I hope they see them w/ rose colored glasses:)

I bet many of you will get these right..I'm just saying...:)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Shortcakes~Lightened~

You may remember a post I did..about one of our very favorite shortbread/cakes..the recipe is from a wonderful woman..Auntie Bernice..
I got everything out this week to make them..and decided to improvise~



I decided to try and make them a combination of small shortbreads that I love..and her shortcakes that I love..I may still continue to modify ....this time..I replaced 1 cup of regular flour w/ 1 cup of rice flour..

Like a lot~


Just a touch flakier than with all regular flour~

And really ..so appetizing in little square cake forms..



I received a beautiful tray as a gift a couple of yrs ago..and they just looked so nice sitting upon it~


Just go peek at the link..the recipe is there:) Just replace the 4 cups of flour..w/ 3 flour.. 1 rice flour..and "le tour est joué~"

If I have kept making these for almost 40 yrs.. they have to be keepers..and the little modification? Well ..it works too..

I have put these in the same tin as always.. my ME tin..from Auntie Bernices' daughter~ "Jojo"~

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Le Ketchup De Grand~ Maman Germaine~Soul Food #118~




My husband's mom was such a BON VIVANT type of person~
Her laughter was contagious..Her hair always lovely w/ that pretty mauve rinse..(It suited her to a t..truly..)an apron perenially tied around her waist..a stocked pantry..and wonderful heritage recipes..a TV in her kitchen..a rocking chair..and all the latest gossip rags:) In French.. she would be well into her 90's now..I knew her in her 70's..
She passed away a long time ago..but one recipe she shared with me..was one of my husband's favorites..
She beamed when her table was laden with good food and family was gathered around it..So happy ..she loved her little French songs too:)Des chansons à répondre..Au Jour De L'An elle était dans son élément~
I still make her ketchup today..most autumns..

It is a sweet ketchup..chunky style..that is perfect during the holidays..especially w/ tourtieres:)Perfect as a gift also~




I received a lovely email w/ a request for this recipe..I am happy..and honored for "Germaine" to share it..



La Recette~


30 red tomatoes
5 peaches
5 pears
5 apples
8 onions
1 full bunch of celery..do you say head of?

2 green peppers..

Bring the above fruits to a boil to blanch and skin..including the tomatoes..then cut up all ingredients in chunks..

then return all cut up ingredients to your large pot and add:


2 cups white distilled vinegar
5 cups of white sugar
1 tbsp of salt
2 tbs of mixed spices (they are called that here..sort of spicy..cinnamony..clovey..etc..)


Simmer for 2 hrs.. heavenly aromas of Germaine's yesteryear will fill your home..
Place in large Mason..Bernadin sterilized jars..and then hot water bath..

Germaine always put a wax seal..w/ a cord in it..:) instead of a hot water bath..I have done both..both have kept well..

we keep it in our cold room..

Makes..I think.. a little over 6 large jars..have plenty on hand..I forget how many:)

Enjoy..
It is a tradition here.

P.S.

I apologize..I made the label w/ ephemera..that I had..simply marked #18..Thank you to whoever shared it!