Thursday, September 29, 2011

Fall Foliage Bouquet

Is it Fall in your area of the world? It is in mine! The mornings are crisp, the apples are on, the pumpkins are out at the stores, and I've been making pear butter and gingerbread pancakes with glazed apples. :)

Today I decided it was time to make a Fall Foliage bouquet:



I'm lucky enough to have a burning bush in my backyard, and I've been very much enjoying its intensely red leaves the past week or so. Today I wanted to bring some of the color indoors, so I simply filled a vase with water, headed out back with some shears and clipped myself some branches. And now it is autumn time in my dining room. :)

Why not go on a fall foliage hunt in your own yard? I hope you find something beautiful to bring indoors.



Happy Fall,

Monday, September 26, 2011

Peach Oven Pancake




Peach Oven Pancake

flour 1/3 cup
sugar 1 teaspoon
salt 1/4 teaspoon
milk 1/3 cup
eggs 2
yogurt 1/2 cup, vanilla or plain
peaches 2 medium, or
2 cups frozen sliced
peaches,thawed and drained
high-fiber cereal 2 tablespoons (optional)

1 heat oven to 400 degrees. Spray round nonstick baking pan, 8 x 1 1/2 inches or 9 x 1 1/2 inches, with cooking spray. Heat pan in oven.

2 beat flour, sugar, salt, milk, and eggs with a hand beater until smooth. Poor into hot pan.

3 bake 15 to 20 minutes or until puffed and browned on edges. Immediately spoon yogurt and peaches into sunken pancake center. Sprinkle with cereal. Serve warm.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Peachy Chicken and Basil Pasta

Who says peaches are only for dessert? They happen to go very well with basil, chicken and pasta. :)


I made this for dinner the other night because we had loads of peaches and it was a warm autumn day so I wanted something fresh tasting. It turned out to fit the ticket exactly. :)



Click here for recipe from Delish.

 

Here's where we are linking up.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Felt Flowers (Mums)




Gorgeous... Yes.
Cheep... Yes.
Easy... of Course!
Want to make one?

Start by cutting 3 sizes of felt squares. I cut 12 of largest, 10 of the next, and 7 of the small.


Trim your squares into petal shapes, leaving one of the large and one of the medium squares for later.
 (I just free handed it because petals aren't all the same- right?)
Cut a circle for your base (I used leftover denim, but you could use more felt or whatever.)


Fold the sides of a petal in toward the center secure to the circle with a couple stitches.


Continue all the way around keeping your petals nice and close together. (I used 11 of them.)


Start your next row by stitching the medium petals in closer to the center. Continue all the way around.
 (I used 9 petals.)


Add your smallest petals on the same way. (I had 7 around.)


Take you unused large and medium square and trim them down to circles. Then cut slits all the way around.


Stack them up (med. on large)


Stitch in the center or your flower. When you pull the stitch tight the center will pull down and all the little 'fringe' will stand up.


Wha-la! a Beautiful Felt Flower!!!
(or two or three...)


Check back soon to see what I did with mine!

 

Monday, September 19, 2011

Ginger-Peach Jam


 

 
I got adventurous in my freezer-jam making and made ginger peach jam. And the rating? 5 stars! Love it.

The sweetness of the peaches goes perfectly with a bit of warmth from being simmered with crystallized ginger and a dash of allspice. I've been eating this on everything--bread, pancakes, German pancakes, with a spoon.... OK, I try not to do that one, but seriously I have to try not to. :)


I used this allrecipes recipe as a base, but ended up changing a lot.
  • I used 2 c. of sugar and 1 c. of honey instead of the whopping 6 c. of sugar called for, and it was still plenty sweet. At first I was mad about the honey--I didn't like the the right-after-adding-honey bites, but as time wore on, now I think it tastes really good. It did taste A LOT like honey (especially at first when I noticed the difference) and if you don't really like honey, then I wouldn't recommend doing it, but now I quite like it and will definetly use honey again (maybe not quite so much though). 
  • I squeezed a bit of lemon juice in it.
  • I added about 1/4 tsp. of allspice.
  • And I didn't add the butter.
Anyway, it was a fun new flavor that I very much enjoy. And since it was a freezer jam, it was super easy and quick to whip up.
 
Enjoy!

 
 

Here's where we are linking up.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fresh Peach Pie

Peaches are on!!! Woot woot!
Here's the first thing I made this year with my peaches (besides just eating them fresh and wonderful, which really is the best way to enjoy a peach in my opinion. 'Course this pie was nothing short of heavenly....

To make the pie, I used my recipe for fresh strawberry pie but just substituted peaches. My family and I very much enjoyed the results. I especially like this recipe because the sauce isn't made from Jell-o. It's made from the peaches themselves. ;)

So, go buy yourself a box or two of peaches from a fruit stand and make sure to eat Fresh Peach Pie soon.
Everyday Art's Fresh Peach Pie
Ingredients
1 baked pie shell
4-5 cups skinned, sliced fresh peaches
Sauce
1 c. granulated sugar
½ c. water
1-2 c. skinned, mashed fresh peaches
3 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 tsp. lemon juice
Optional add-ins to change the sauce:
1 tsp. lemon zest
1 tsp. vanilla
¼ tsp. ground nutmeg
½ tsp. ground cinnamon

Directions
1. Bake the pie shell and get it cooling.
2. To make the sauce, combine about ¾ c. of sugar with the water and peaches and bring it to a boil. Then combine the cornstarch with the remaining sugar and add it to the hot sauce. Add the lemon juice. Cook over medium heat until thickened. Add the optional add-ins if desired. Le the sauce cool.
3. Fill the pie shell with half of the sliced fruit, then a layer of sauce. Then add the remaining sliced peaches and the sauce on top. Serve as-is or with some whip cream.

 Click here to print the recipe.
 

Here's where we're linking up.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

How to Peel Peaches


First things first.
We have a bunch of mouth watering peach recipes coming up, but befor we start I thought it might be helpful to show how to peal peaches.

Bring a big pot of water to a boil and drop your peaches in.
(make sure the water is deep enough to cover them.)
Boil for about 40 seconds or up to a minute if the peaches are a little under ripe.

Use a slotted spoon to scoop the peaches into a bath of ice water.

cut a little slit in the skin or just pinch it and pull. The skins should come right off!

Wha-la! Beautiful peeled peaches!


Monday, September 12, 2011

Zucchini Bread

Got zucchini coming out your ears? If you don't, it's likely your neighbor does. :)
Been needing a good zucchini bread recipe to try?

Look no further!


I have several recipes that I like to use each zucchini season, but this one is an excellent basic recipe. No bells and whistles, no frills and fluffs--just good-tasting, hearty, realiable zucchini bread that we can't get enough of.

At our house we call it "Zucchini Cake Bread." Then my kids think it's dessert, and that I'm super fun to give them treats for snack time. I wonder how long that will last?


Zucchini Bread
3 c. flour--I do half whole-wheat and half all-purpose
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
3 tsp. ground cinnamon
3 eggs
1/2 c.vegetable oil
1/2 c. applesauce
1 1/2 c. white sugar (original recipe calls for 2 c.)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. grated,drained zucchini
1 c. chopped walnuts

Instructions
  1. Grease and flour two 8 x 4 inch pans. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.               
  2. Sift flour, salt, baking powder, soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.
  3. Beat eggs, oil, applesauce, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. Add sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture, and beat well. Stir in zucchini and nuts until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pans.
  4. Bake for 40 to 60 minutes, or until tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes. Remove bread from pan, and completely cool.
Enjoy!

 

Here's where we are linking up.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Snail Art

Today we want to share a super fun and creative project to do with kids (or yourself. I mean, who says you have to be a kid to enjoy all the cool things they get to do?!) :)


Snail Art! How fun! This idea is from one of our good friends, Jamie.
Not Jaime as in Everyday Art Jaime, but Jamie amazing-sewer Jamie (huge distinction in that department)!

Well not only is she good behind a sewing machine, but apparently she does way-cool things with her kids too. :)
Want to make some Snail Art of your own? It's easy.  
Alls you need is some paper, some food dye (the liquidy kind) and, obviously, some snails.
Put some dye on the paper, then put the snails on top of the dye and watch them crawl around and make patterns as they pull the dye with them. Easy peasy but big wow factor.

Here are some of Jamie's pictures of their project:





Fun! Must-try for sure. Especially before the cold weather sets in....

Have a creative day!




Here's where we are linking up.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Fruit Salsa


I'd like to say that I knew what I was doing for this, but in reality, I had 1 hour until I needed to be at a pot-luck summer BBQ with zero ideas in my head of what to do....

Sooo, I invented a Fruit Salsa. :) It turned out really tasty, but honestly the best part was that it tasted good even though I just threw in whatever fruit I had in the kitchen. I think if I planned to make it, I'd probably stress a lot over what to put in it. :) As is, it was what I had and it was great.

The best part was the yummy pie-crust cookies I made to eat it with. YUM-O!

Here's what I did:

Salsa
Chop together:
2 apples
3 small mangoes
some honeydew melon
a few strawberries
Add a dash of cinnamon and yer done. :)

Pie-Crust Cookies
Make (or buy) some pie crust.
Roll it out, cut it into strips.
Put on a baking sheet.
Sprinkle with lots of sugar and cinnamon.
Bake until golden.



It really turned out yummy. I could go for some more right now.... And seriously, with that rather odd assortment of fruit, I think you could put whatever you wanted in it and it would turn out really good. I think the base recipe would be to use 2 chopped apples and then about the same amount or double of a particularly soft and sweet fruit like the mangoes or some berries. I'm getting hungry just thinking of it. :)

Anyway, enjoy! 


 

Here's where we are linking up.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Honey Bee Birthday Party

This was SUCH a fun party theme: a Honey Bee Birthday.


Yellow has been my little girl's favorite color right from the get-go (hence the yellow room). So, for months we've been discussing back-and-forth what she wanted to do for her birthday party. After going through all sorts of ideas that included watermelons, fairies, forests, rainbows, picnics, zoos, and swimming parties, "yellow" soon became the clear favorite.

Then she saw a cake shaped like a bee-hive and she was sold. There was no looking back. But she (nor I) liked all the yellow and black bumble bee party things I showed her as much as the more natural colors, so we went with a "honeybee" birthday party and stuck with a more natural color palette--yellows and browns and everything in between.

Here's the beehive cake.
I think it turned out really cute and it was the easiest cake I've made yet! The secret? Well, remember those Barbie cakes? The ones where the cake is a dress and you stick a Barbie doll in the top? Well, lucky for me, my MIL had one of those cake pans around still, so I used it and turned it into a beehive.

For the party favors, I thought it'd be cute to use brown paper bags to keep with the natural colors we were using. I cut a window in the bags, then glued in a piece of paper that sort of resembled honey comb. We filled the bags with cute little jars of honey (see below) and color-it-yourself cardboard jigsaw puzzles (with bees on them of course) from Micheael's. Then, I tied them with some hemp and added cute little matching tags (that Emily made--thanks Em.)



(All these adorable printables can be found here)

Then it was party time! The kids helped themselves to the snacks (lots of sweets of course, but I also offered some Chex Mix, honey-coated almonds and other honey treats).



Isn't this little boy adorable? The lone boy at our party. :)


My daughter, the birthday girl, doesn't like party games, so we went for a party craft instead. The kids all decorated masks with foam stickers, rhinesontes, feathers, glitter, etc. I think it turned out fun.


Here's all the kiddos in their decorated masks. Notice they're all in yellow? I seriously debated about asking the parents to have their kids wear yellow--that's kind of asking a lot if they don't already have yellow. But, in the end I made a little note on the card. It was really cute to see them all in yellow for our yellow party, but I think I won't do that again because I know that at least 2 of the kids said they bought something yellow to wear especially for the party.... Anyway, lessons learned along the way....

Hope you enjoyed that cute party! I sure did, and most importantly, so did the birthday girl. :)

 

Here's where we link up.

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