Tuesday, March 29, 2011

News From Nutmeg

Hello everybody. My name is Nutmeg and I'm almost 6 months old already! This is how I looked on the very first day my mama and daddy came to pick me up. As you can probably see, I was really nervous and scared. I remember it was a few weeks before Christmas of 2010 and it was rainy and really cold!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Tale Of Two Bob's

Lately I'd been feeling like most all of my tiles had been geared toward women and women's interests.    Now, with the addition of boxes and trays I have a whole new world of fun design ideas that I get to play with. Yippee!

Yesterday was all about the boys. Little boys to be exact... and little boys named Bob.  Sponge Bob Square Pants and Bob The Builder.  Two fun little guys who couldn't be more different, but each start out exactly the same.

Each Bob starts with a brilliant blue background paint.  Two coats to be exact, making sure there is plenty of drying time in between.  Be patient. Bob's don't like to be rushed.

Let's watch Sponge Bob come to life.  Just add water :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

FFWD Salted Butter Break-Ups

This little cookie 'disc' hit all the right bells and whistles on my tongue. I'm a sucker for anything sweet and salty and this recipe is just that! Not too sweet, not too salty. Just right!!! I also love the rustic appeal this cookie has, so when a few of my girlfriends came over yesterday afternoon for a visit, I served them these off of brown paper bags. I thought it was charming but I'm not quite sure what they thought about my serving style. LOL! However, they enjoyed the taste and that's what is most important!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Chipotle Honey Chicken With Sweet Potatoes

Sweet, smokey, fragrant and mouth watering.  That's the best way I can describe this recipe I've adapted (an asterisk * will denote my adaptations from the original recipe) from Melissa Clark's "In The Kitchen With A Good Appetite" (page 147).  Oh, easy too. I forgot to mention easy... and quick. I can only imagine how good this will be on the outdoor grill this summer when fussing over a meal is  frowned upon.  I can't wait!!!

Chipotle Honey Chicken with Sweet Potato Recipe

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Keeping My Gingham In Check!

When Lana of Lana's Cooking got in touch with me saying that she would love for me to paint her blog header on one of my tiles for her, I could not have been more excited!  I've always loved the look and feel of Lana's food blog and was anxious to recreate it for her on a trivet/tile.  Little did I know that what I thought would be a no brainer for me to recreate (the gingham check) was actually the thing that caused me the most trouble.  But, never fear...I'll not rest until it meets with my own approval and I'm the pickiest person there is when it comes to my own work and sometimes I just have to learn to edit out some detail!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Lentil Stew with Lemon and Sausage

Lentil Stew with Lemon and Sausage Recipe

This is one of the many, many recipes I've been anxious to make from Melissa Clark's cookbook "In The Kitchen With A Good Appetite".   It's one of those page turning books where just about every recipe you see has you mentally making your grocery list so you can be ready at a moments notice to whip up one of her creative and well thought out dishes in no time. 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Thinking "On Top" Of The Box!

I am very proud and pleased to announce that I have added a few "new and improved" items to my line of hand painted, custom tiles and I am absolutely thrilled to be able offer them to you. I could not be more excited about these items as I know they'll be products you'll love too.

I'm calling them trinket or treasure boxes and trays and they are designed to fit in any room in your home, school or office. From a child's bedroom to an adults, from your den to your kitchen, from your bathroom to closet, for your desk or your counter top... and for men or for women alike! If you have an interest or passion, a hobby or craft, a design or a inspiration piece that you're simply crazy about then I can paint a tile for you that best suits who you are, and what you're into.  Then, by adding your own custom tile to the top of a sturdily crafted wooden box or tray makes it a keepsake piece like never before.  Now, that's certainly "thinking 'on top' of the box!" :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Irish Grasshopper

It's minty. It's green. It makes you want to kick up your heals and do and an Irish jig :)


4 parts vodka
4 parts green creme de menthe
4 parts creme de cocao
Cracked Ice

-Combine all ingredients with cracked ice in a cocktail shaker.
-Shake well (until the shaker is too cold to hold).
-Strain into 2 chilled martini glasses.

Who knows...maybe you'll get lucky (Irish humor) after you sample one of these!  Just sayin' :)

Cheers to you!

FFWD - Beggar's Linguine

Had I not been an active member of FFWD, I would have passed right on by this recipe in "Around My French Table".  While I am  huge fan of pasta, I'm not such a proponent of figs and raisins and when adding them all together in one dish, it definitely made me skeptical.  However, I was willing to trust Dorie and go with it because of my love for the salty sweet combination of tastes...and because she (Dorie) has  not steered me wrong yet... and because I am totally nuts about nuts!!!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Lovely Logo Tile!

Not long ago I was contacted by Angela of Cakes By Angela to design a custom tile for her from her business card with her cute logo.  She emailed me a copy of her card and we briefly discussed what she was looking for as far as details.  With a coordinating border to finish the look, here is Angela's business card tile from start to finish:

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sweets For The Sweet

We're headed over to my father-in-law's house today to play some cards (Russian Rummy to be exact) and to take him out to dinner.   He is a wonderful man who just turned 90 last summer and remains active and spry.  I hope that if I live to be that age, I too will keep myself in as good of shape as he has, and does.

To show him how much he means to us, I baked him some cookies to take to him today.  They're healthy(hence the oatmeal) and yet sweet (the candy addition), just like he is and I hope that he enjoys eating them as much as I enjoyed making them for him.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Best Burgers EVER

So just yesterday I did a post on how easy it is to grind your own ground beef using short ribs and a food processor.  Today I post about how mouthwatering these burgers were.  Easily they were/are the BEST burgers EVER and I can't encourage you enough to try them for yourself.  You can thank me later :)

For the sake of simplicity and to allow for full burger flavor, nothing was added to my ground beef except salt, pepper and a simple slice of american cheese to top it all off. Feel free to add what you like but we needed to be purists for this first taste test.   FYI, I used some store bought onion buns but if you're interested in making your own buns, check out my recipe for garlicky burger buns.

Enough typing. I'll let the pictures do the rest of the talking :)

FFWD - Savory Cheese And Herb Bread

The real name of this recipe is "Savory Cheese And Chive Bread" and you can find it on page 34 of "Around My French Table" by Dorie Greenspan.  However I didn't use chives.  What I did use was rosemary and thyme because that's what I had on hand in my Kudos Kitchen and as Dorie states, "this is a recipe that begs for variation". 

I have to laugh though because what we're really calling it at my house is "Urban Cheese Bread".  While I was taking my photos for this post, my son asked me what type bread it was and I replied "Herb and Cheese Bread".  Guess I need to enunciate better because he heard me say, well...you get the gist. LOL.  Gotta' love it!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Not The Same Old Grind

I don't believe I've ever called ground beef "pretty" before. It just didn't seem like a word that would best describe ground meat.  However, that all changed today when I called my sister to describe the looks of the boneless short ribs I'd just ground up in my food  processor in order to turn it into burgers for tonight's dinner. Yep, it's pretty all right and could not be easier to make. Let me take a minute to show you:

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Banana Panna Cotta With Florentine Cookies

The February's Daring Bakers challenge was something I'd always wanted to try making.  This is specifically why I appreciate being in these  baking and cooking groups because it pushes me into attempting things I may have never gotten around to on my own. 

This challenge recipe was chosen by Mallory from A Sofa In The Kitchen (don't you just love the name of that site?) and in Mallory's words  "is silky, smooth and downright dreamy".  Of course you can always adapt the chosen recipe and add your own twist and spins on the original so I chose do make mine into a Banana Panna Cotta just because I thought the flavor of banana would compliment the smoothness of the panna cotta and because it's just a heck of a lot of fun to say. LOL

Kudos Kitchen By Renee

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