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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Let Me Take You Elementary School

Salt Dough
Can you feel it?
Smell it?
Taste it?
Oh, you know you did.
2Groovydude volunteered us to make salt dough for his class.
It's taking me back.
Mix flour and salt.
 Pour in hot tap water.
 It's gonna be so ooey, gooey.  Yeah!
 Mix around.
 Mix a little more.
 Looking pretty good.
 Give up and go for it with your hands.
 Our designated color was orange.
Go Pokes!
(Excuse has that effect on me.)
 We went the food coloring route instead of Kool-Aid.
It was fun to get the red and yellow mix just right for our
pale orange.
 Finished product ready for school abuse.
Make some with your kids.
Or make some, to make yourself feel like a kid again.
Some things never change.

Salt Dough Recipe

4 cups flour
1 cup salt
1 1/2 cup of hot tap water
2 t. vegetable oil (optional)

Mix flour and salt together, then gradually add water until dough becomes elastic.  Add oil, mix.  Add food coloring or Kool-Aid to create desired color.  If mixture is too sticky, add flour.  If mixture is too crumbly, add water.  Knead dough until smooth.  Store in refrigerator.

Salt Dough Ornaments
in the Microwave
I am doing my best to get you in the Christmas spirit.
Do not resist me!
I want those snowmen!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Soup to Nuts

So, I have declared it....Soup Month!
All my recipes will be soups that we love.
So here goes.
Vegetable Soup
I love this one, because it uses all the stuff in my fridge and
pantry that has just been sitting and waiting to be used.
Heat a non-stick skillet and add olive oil.
Artichokes and purple onion.
Brown a little to get that good, yummy flavor.
 Add some celery, carrots, you know, whatever you have.
 A little cabbage...mmmhmm.
 For the liquid part, I use chicken broth and tomatoes.
 This is the best part...put all of the ingredients in a crock-pot.
Love the crock-pot!
Now for another Mammie secret, (that's my mom) add a little
chili powder to your veggies and it makes them taste
real good.
 Simmer for about 3-4 hours
(you've already cooked the veggies, so it doesn't take long)
on med-high heat.
I put these on about 8am and had it for lunch.
 After everything just needed a little green.
So, I added some peas.
You could use green beans, green pepper, something green.
I add this stuff last because it is more delicate than the other veggies and it doesn't over cook them.
Nobody likes mushy veggies.
 If you are just opposed to the veggie only idea.
Add some chicken.
We had left-over grill chicken from the night before
Chop it up and add it right in.
I didn't heat the chicken, because the hot soup took care of it.
Hot days.
It doesn't get better.
My tummy says, "Alright!"
This soup can freeze, so I put individual servings in the freezer and
pop it in the microwave if I need a snack when I am seriously dieting.
I wish I seriously dieted more.
 You were wondering about that "Nuts" part weren't you?
I am nuts about Balsamic vinegar.
Yes, I admit, the sweet goodness just makes me salivate.
And we live on nuts around here.
We put them in and on everything and snack on them everyday.
So let's put the two together and make them even better.

 Balsamic vinegar
 Together in the pan
 Heat and stir.
 Add walnuts.
Okay, I think just about any nut would be delicious,
but we like walnuts, because we don't like walnuts without the sugar
coated goodness.
And they are very good for your brain.
I really read that somewhere...I need all the help I can get.
 Pour nut mixture onto a greased, foil-lined baking pan.
 Put in the oven for 10 minutes.
Such a short amount of time for such tasty goodness.
 Sugar and Balsamic all melted and caramelized.
Go ahead try some, you won't be sorry.
It's easy.
These are really great added to a salad for that little sweet nibble.
Goes well on that salad with blue cheese crumbles, also.
Oh, my!

Vegetable (or chicken veggie) Soup

1 14 oz can artichokes, browned
1/2 purple onion, chunked and browned
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 1/2 cups chopped cabbage
1 14 oz can chicken broth
1 14 oz can tomatoes
Salt and pepper, to taste
Chili powder, a few shakes
1 pkg frozen peas

Brown veggies, except for peas in non-stick skillet with a little olive oil. Add veggies, broth, tomatoes, and spices to crock-pot. Cook for 3-4 hours on med-high heat. Add peas or other soft veggies and heat for a few more minutes. Remember to add some steak or chicken if you can't face only veggies. Eat up!

Caramelized Walnuts

Non-stick spray
1/2 cup sugar
2 T. balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups walnuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Line heavy rimmed baking sheet with foil.  Spray foil with non-stick spray.  Combine sugar and vinegar in small saucepan.  Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes.  Add nuts; toss to coat.  Transfer mixture to baking sheet.
Bake until nuts are deep brown and syrup thickens and coats nuts, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.  Cool completely on baking sheet. Break nuts apart.  Store at room temp in air-tight container.

Oh, yes! It is that time of year.
I know you don't want to think about it, but check out this card site.
They have really cute cards, with interesting colors.
Not just red and green.
Also, they plant a tree for every order they recieve and
everything is printed on recycled paper.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Good Deed

Daddio likes to do good deeds.
His favorite is installing wheel chair ramps, but today, just porch railings.
Is this the coolest old house?
I'm loving it.
Our little lady who owns the home was not feeling well today, so no pics.
She was very happy with her railings, however.
Such a sweetie.
 Greeting cat
 Side porch our sweet little lady was using and trash can (with wheels) she was using for handrail.
 Daddio and 2Groovydude unloading supplies.
 More supplies.
2hipchick also does a tiny part in these good deeds.
Mainly, I take pics.
But don't worry, I got my hands dirty.
 My job, along with 2Groovydude, was to mix the concrete to set the porch railings.
I have to say, we are pretty good little mixers.
I had to use muscles.
Those muscles were sore from yoga.
I whined, a little.
 Measure twice, cut once.
 This would be the cutting part.
 Clean-up crew. 
I showed him the shirt trick.
 Finished product with cute little boy. 
He was not included, we did take him home with us.
2Groovydude looks so proud.
First United Methodist in Claremore found our lady in need.
Daddio came to the rescue.
Along with our church, another good deed done.
Do a good deed!
It will make your day!