The last 2 Saturdays I had jewelry shows. I did quite well, but because of that I have been making jewelry like crazy! I want to thank my hosts of the 2 events for inviting me. Candy Walls of Longaberger Baskets and Joyce Bridgeford of the Forest Park Womens Club. Candy put on a nice event at the local VFW and between the customers, herself and the other vendors there I had a successful event. Joyce put on the Forest Park Womens Club Art and Boutique event at Winton Woods High School. I hope to be a vendor again next year...in my same spot.
This Saturday , November 7th, my friend Paula Provenzano has a few of my pieces with her at Seasonably Chic an event by Cincy Chic at the Phoenix Hotel in Cincinnati. It is an opportunity for early Christmas shopping with local boutiques and businesses. Paula has put together some fabulous gift baskets and if you buy a gift certificate for a service too you get an additional discount on the basket. Make sure you get downtown to see her.
Today was a slow day at work and I am exhausted, so I left a little early to indulge the "Martha" in me. I decided to bake cookies, bread, make pumpkin apple butter and at the last minute make chicken tortilla soup. Now, if I was truly having a Martha moment I would have planned ahead. It takes time to grow and harvest vegetables, cherries, oats, wheat, apples, pumpkins, milk cows and churn butter, and get the eggs from the hens ( and kill and roast one for the soup). Add to that forging my own utensils, pots and pans and making the bowls and cups...well, I just didn't think far enough in advance! I know, I know...Martha is ashamed of me.
So I guess she just was my inspiration. It started with a post about making apple butter, which I know my husband loves. I'm more of an instant gratification kind of girl, so I didn't want an 11 hour project. No apple peeling and cooking, straining and mashing. I went to my favorite recipe source All Recipes.com and hunted for a recipe that would be easy to get all the ingredients and prepare in a few hours. Here is the recipe that caught my eye:
PUMPKIN APPLE BUTTER
- 1 (29 ounce) can solid pack pumpkin
- 2 cups apple cider
- 1 cup applesauce
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, combine all ingredients. Simmer,uncovered, for 2 hours, stirring occasionally, until thickened. Pourinto freezer containers. Refrigerate up to 1 month or freeze.
Of course I can never just look at one recipe, after all I used to buy and read recipe books like other people read paperbacks! So I started looking for a cherry crisp recipe, and I saw several that I will try soon, but these cookies made my mouth water! All my favorite things, cherries, chocolate, toffee chips and oatmeal, so I printed out this recipe too!
CHEWY OATMEAL CHERRY TOFFEE CRISP
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats
- 1 cup dried cherries
- 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup toffee baking bits
- Sift together the flour and baking soda; set aside. In a large bowl,cream together the butter, brown sugar and white sugar until smooth.Beat in the egg and vanilla. Gradually stir in the sifted mixture, thenmix in the oats, cherries, chocolate chips and toffee bits until evenlydistributed. Divide the dough in to 3 portions and form them into logs,about 2 inches in diameter. wrap in waxed paper and refrigerate orfreeze until firm.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets orline them with parchment paper. Slice dough logs into 3/4 inch thickslices. Place the cookies 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookiesheets.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow cookies to coolon baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to coolcompletely.
I had a plan to make pork chops for dinner, but the husband had some dental surgery yesterday and I didn't think that chewy food would be a good idea. I am standing in the grocery store on my Blackberry trying to find a soup recipe like the one I knew I had at home for Tortilla Chicken Soup. I never follow the exact recipe, it's more of a guide, but I was franticallly trying to remember the ingredients. After reviewing a few, I had a general idea of what I needed and headed into the store. Here is my recipe for the soup I made tonight, just remember, I often change a few things here and there depending on what is in the cupboard at home.
LYNN'S TORTILLA CHICKEN SOUP
1 Roasted Chicken from your local grocery store
2 pkgs. taco seasoning
1 pkg. ranch dressing mix
2 cans black beans
1 large jar salsa
1 quart chicken broth
1 bag frozen corn
2 cans kidney beans
1 can chili beans
Shred the chicken and place in a large soup pot with all the remaining ingredients. Cook on low for about an hour, stirring occasionally. Serve with sour cream, tortilla chips and cheese! Perfect for a chilly winter night.
I get home, spread all my ingredients out and decide what to make first....bread! Yes I know, it wasn't on the list, but with my handy dandy bread machine and a few ingredients I knew that apple butter would taste extra good on home made bread. I threw the ingredients in and started on the soup. Open cans, pour in the pot, strip chicken and add to the pot and finally add the spice packets. Turn on low and start the next thing. Get out the next pot and put in the Pumpkin Apple Butter ingredients, stir, cook on medium heat until it bubbles and then turn down and let cook for a few hours. Uh oh! What is wrong with the darn bread machine....it's mixing, but not stopping to let the dough rise! So I shut it down and let the stuff rise, punch it down, let it rise again and set the machine to bake. Probably won't be the best I've ever made, but slathered with Pumpkin Apple Butter I bet it will taste perfect!
On to the cookies! So the butter needs to be softened. Do I wait, no I nuke it! Oops! To much, so now I have to wait for it to go from a liquid back to a semi solid so I can cream in the sugars. Once that happens I follow the recipe and realize I have to chill the dough before making the cookies. I always hate how the dough looks when you have to make "logs" out of it. There is something just wrong about 5 logs on a cookie sheet. Five logs with chunks in them! Mother's you know what I'm talking about! But I did it and put them in the freezer. About 30 minutes later I take them out and slice and bake them. In my oven they need 15 minutes of cooking time to look done to me. They smell fantastic! I following the instructions and let them cool for 5 minutes and then move to the rack to finish cooling, but anyone who knows me knows I can't wait to taste them...heaven in my mouth! The perfect combination of flavors. I now have a new favorite cookie.
Terry is on his way home and can't wait to see what I was up to today! I am sure he will be in agreement with Martha that "it's a very good thing!".
On a side note....what's up with Martha going on Rachel Ray????? I am not usually home when Rachel is on in our area, but I was today and they are advertising that she'll be on the show next week. I am sure it won't live up to my fantasies...food flying across the stage, a knife fight, forks stuck in someones eye, wrestling for cookware. No it will be all nicey nice and civil. I will just have to envision thought bubbles above their heads with what they really want to say inside! hee hee...that may be funnier than anything that happens on the show!
Hope I will have time to post again soon, with Thanksgiving coming up I'll have to blog about my turkey adventures! My Dad and Stepmom are coming to visit my son, so I am cooking this year again. See ya soon!