Monthly Archives: January 2011

Good Food + Good People

It was my birthday on Friday and to celebrate my friends came over for an appetizer party. The only requirements for attendance was that you show up with some sort of appetizer in hand. It was a very rich (and delicious) cheesey goodness kind of night. It’s nice to have friends who support my idea that a night in with friends is just as fun as a night out with friends (cheaper too!) We had good food, good games, and of course, good company.

Craig brought Seafood Surprise Spread. I’m not a huge seafood fan, but the little shrimp pieces in this taste so good!

Kathy brought mushroom caps that were loaded with bacon and topped with cheese. You can never go wrong with bacon.

She also brought crab stuffed snowpeas. Something I’ve never even heard of before, but they were delicious. It was a good combination of something creamy and smooth with the nice crunch of the snap peas.

Jenna brought bruschetta and it was tasty!

I made stuffed mushroom caps too, and hot artichoke dip, but I’ll share them later so I can include the recipes.

My 26th birthday was a blast and I’m so blessed to have been able to celebrate it with these people. You know I’ve been talking with friends here lately about how I’m not sure of what I’m doing with my life and whether I want to stay where I am. I’ve been feeling so uncertain about where my life is going lately, but when I was transferring these pictures from my camera to my computer I saw this one and I just thought how in the world could I want to be anywhere else? I love these people.

Holy Recipes, Batman!

The other day Vanessa commented on one of my recipe posts and said “I rarely look at cookbooks now that I’ve discovered food blogs” and I couldn’t agree more! Since discovering food blogs I find that I am constantly looking for recipes online and not in cookbooks. Food blogs are so appealing because of the photos! I love being able to see a picture of what I’m going to be making so I have an idea of whether mine is turning out right or not!

It’s not unusual for me to read through a food blog (or blogs) and end up with ten or more tabs open in Firefox as I keep finding more and more recipes I want to try. The problem though is with remembering what recipes I want to try. I bookmark things that look good, but very rarely ever go back to those bookmarks when I need a recipe. I usually forget that I’ve ever saved them in the first place.

That being said I thought I’d make a list here of some of the recipes I’ve found lately that I really want to try. With one of my projects being to try 100 new recipes this year I think I’m going to need this list (and hopefully I’ll remember to refer back to it!).

  1. Tomato Bisque Soup
  2. Honey Caramel Sauce
  3. Devilled Egg Dip
  4. Chicken Salad
  5. Peanut Butter Pie
  6. Chocolate Chip Jam Bars
  7. Cream Cheese Pound Cake
  8. Mini Maple Pancake Muffins
  9. Papa’s Buttermilk Pancakes
  10. Fluffy French Toast
  11. Bacon Wrapped Pineapple Bites
  12. Blueberry Cream Pie
  13. Easy Homemade Ice Cream
  14. Cinnamon Nutmeg Waffles
  15. The BEST Chocolate Cake
  16. Real, Juicy, Bacon Cheeseburgers
  17. Chicken Packets
  18. Bacon Cheeseburger Chicken
  19. Chicken Cordon Bleu
  20. Delicious, Creamy Mashed Potatoes

I’ve come to the conclusion that if I’m going to hit 100 new recipes this year that I need to either take more snacks to work or start having people over for supper far more often!

Hopscotch Too

Hmm…what are we working on here?

I went home last weekend to celebrate my upcoming birthday with my family and to attend the Everyday Style product launch held in Humboldt. Friday night I was convincing two of my aunts to come to this product launch with me and trying to see what they could do in Humboldt while I was at a meeting. Just like a lot of small cities we found that Humboldt had a fabric store called the Haus of Stitches (not to be confused with House, as I refused to pronounce it that way much to the chagrin of my mother).

I saw this fabric as soon as I walked into the store, the little owls being the first thing to catch my eye. These sort of soft earth tones are so my kind of colours. There was a quilt up on the wall using these fabrics, but my time was limited and I didn’t think I’d have enough time to find the pattern, get the measurements, cut the fabric, etc so I just decided it wasn’t meant to be. That is until I walked to the back of the store where they had a shelf full of prepackaged quilting kits, including a kit for the quilt I had seen on the wall! It was meant to be after all!

The quilt pattern is called Hopscotch Too and is by Designs to Share With You. This is where fabric choice speaks volume. Based solely on the picture on the front of this pattern I never would have picked it up, but after seeing a finished quilt made with this pattern using fabrics I like there was no hesitation that this would be the next quilt I’d make.The majority of the fabric is from a Robert Kaufman line called On a Whim 2 designed by Amy Shimler. I am especially fond of the owls.

I really like these “whack and stack” sort of quilts, as I like to call them. The kind where the finished product looks like it involved many intricate, well measured cuts, where in reality it really just involved sewing things together and then cutting them apart again. I cut all of the squares out on Tuesday night while a friend from work was here working on her own quilt. Of course I got talking and managed to cut one block 1/2 an inch too small, but luckily I had bought a few fat quarters in matching fabric so I could fix my mistake. Note to self: measure twice, cut once.

The downfall of these whack and stack quilts is the ironing. After cutting out and ironing the fabric blocks it took me less than two hours to sew them together, cut them out again, and iron everything a second or third time. There would be significantly more time spent with the iron if I were to cut each of these pieces out and sew them together individually, so I really shouldn’t complain.

After cutting the block apart twice and sewing things back together again twice I’ll end up with a block that has four different fabrics on each corner. If I had cut out my borders the other night as well and had a dedicated day to work on this quilt I could easily have the top sewn together within a few hours.

That, of course, is not how I work so the partially finished blocks have been set aside for another day.