Sunday, November 22, 2009

New things to love

Do you take time to find new things? Everyone is so busy with the day to day necessary chores that someone usually has to remind me to get our of that rut. Mind you I'm perfectly happy in my little rut,but, I know there are so many new and old things to discover I often need a shove to move on.

My friend Jeannie is always opening her mind to new possibilities.Last year she took a course in photography which lead to another course and the end results were these black and white photos. This picture doesn't do her work justice but I had to attempt to show it to you. These started out as snapshots of real strawberry pots. I can't explain the path she took to achieve this end result. I just admire her ability to open new doors because they are there.

This is more my realm of comfort. Mmmm good food gets me every time.I'm sure most of you know about buttermilk biscuits.Would you believe I can't ever remember making them?They're just one of those things I've never needed. However new to me this year is a magazine called Mary Janes Farm Her web site is a little difficult to get around but, her magazine is chock full of ideas and products that would make anyone interested in a back to the earth lifestyle,just a little more informed. In her June July issue I discovered what she calls can't miss biscuit bliss. I made tiny little biscuits and used them to make Cajun crab cake sliders. Sliders are the "hot appetizer these days and I created my version using her biscuit recipe.Everyone loved them and I put the recipe away till next summer.That is until we went down to South Carolina for vacation. Biscuits are a way of life down there. You have your breakfast biscuits ,your biscuit and gravy,snack time biscuit and by the time you get back to New England you are crying"lordy how I NEED a biscuit" So out came the recipe and I have made several batches since. Want a taste of the past,try these for breakfast.We started having egg ham and cheese on them and we thought that was the ultimate.My friend Sharlene suggested having them warmed and drizzled with honey.Mmm, that was another winner.Here is the recipe give them a try and let me know how you made use of them.
2 1/2 cups of flour
2 1/2 teas.cream of tartar
1 1/2 teas baking soda
1 1/2 teas salt
5 Tbls cold butter
1 cup of buttermilk
Sift all dry ingredients With a pastry blender or fork cut in butter till mixture resembles coarse crumbs.Make a depression in center and pour buttermilk ,mix till you have a sticky dough. Turn the dough on to a HEAVILY FLOURED board .Flatten dough to 1/4 1/2 inch thickness Cut into 2inch circles with a 2 in biscuit cutter dipped in flour. Stack one biscuit on top of another. After baking they will pull apart so you can fill them as desired. Now they look like little hamburger buns.Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes at 400. I used parchment paper out of habit,but I don't think it was necessary.When the tops are golden they are done.

Another new thing to love in our household is Miss Bitty.This is as clear a picture as I can get these days.Lightning doesn't move as quickly as she does. It's like watching a new sporting event.I think she has 1/2 a dozen balls in various corners of the house and every now and then she comes whizzing by in hot pursuit of one. Very exhausting.................said the hobbit

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Time to make the soups

Some of you may not know, that every year, I make soup which I deliver to my customers once a week. It usually makes winter just fly by,makes people happy and gives me that little spending money we all like to have.

This year I discovered several soups that started with roasting the veggies. It is amazing what that does to the taste. When I tell people how the soup was made,they insist I'm keeping some cook's secret from them. So, here's my recipe for ROASTED PUMPKIN SOUP,
give it a try and let me know if this isn't a most comforting soup.The recipe makes 4 qt.It's a great way to keep in touch with the neighbors. Go ahead,pass it around.
3 CUPS OF MUSHROOMS (I used shitake this time but its up to you)
Cut and seed the pumpkin .I cut the pumpkin in 1/2 then did 1in. half circles
Toss this in a bowl with the garlic ,onion and mushrooms and about 1/3 cup of olive oil. This mix should be roasted at 400 degrees till pumpkin is easy to pierce.Check after 20 min. and go from there. Once the pumpkin has cooled, remove from skin and puree ALL with some of your broth.
I used veggie broth because was making this for my vegetarians,however I have learnt that any broth will do if you have chicken or beef feel free to give that a whirl. Return to your qt pot and add remaining broth till you feel it's a consistency that you like for soup. S&p to taste and serve with a crusty piece of bread.

A bonus to making this soup are the seeds. I soaked them in warm water to remove all that fuzzy slime.Then I put the seeds in a salt bath and let them soak overnight. Drain put on a cookie sheet and in the oven at 300 degrees for about 30-40 min. Just make sure they are good and dry. You don't want them to mold in storage.

It made 3 snack packs that my husband has been nibbling on. It is a salted snack so I can't allow him to have this all the time but, once in awhile is ok.................said the hobbit

Sunday, November 8, 2009

South Carolina warms my heart

A few week ago, I was lucky enough to head down to South Carolina with my husband. We both had a little time off and that's where he wanted to go.I hesitated because it's a 20 hour drive (he won't fly) and I thought the vacation would be more exhausting than fun. He had his heart set on it so off we went to see long time friends who live just outside of Charleston.It was just what I needed.

I had forgotten how much I enjoyed my friend's company.She is a true southern lady who opened her home to me and made my vacation one that I will cherish.This is her front porch and it just begs to be enjoyed.We sat out there with our glass of wine and rice cakes and brought each other up to date as best we could.I had not seen her in about 7 years. There was not awkward moment for either one of us. Just good times.

This is her dog Moxie. A beautiful golden and so well behaved. Of course her favorite thing to do is chase the ball and wrestle with Edisto.

This would be Edisto. She belongs to my friend's daughter and you are seeing her do her favorite thing. Yep just hanging out under the table is as much excitement as she likes.
Of course the vacation was way too short and as I was packing to leave, Moxie was putting her toys in my suitcase. We had a good laugh about that .Then as I brought my bags on the porch Edisto nudged me from behind. I turned to see her looking up at me with a pair of underpants in her mouth. I was a little embarrassed thinking I must have dropped them while packing,however ,I quickly realized they belonged to my friend.She wears a size 0 so their was no doubt about it.
I guess Moxie and Edisto thought we had such a great time that wherever I was going we should all be going there to. I am so grateful to my Jiggy (the hubby) for wanting to go there.It was a trip long overdue and now I can close my eyes and "In my mind I'm going to Carolina"........said the hobbit

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Ornament swap

Yeah IT'S HERE. One of my favorite things to do at Christmas is the ornament swap.This will be my 3rd year and it's quite exciting. I have so many beautiful ornaments on my tree,all hand made of course by various artist around the world. This tradition was introduced to me by Sarah
At first I was a little stress about being able to meet the standards of the exchange ,however that's my nature and I soon realized it's all about the bonding. It's a great way to get in the spirit of giving and I now look forward to it every year. Although I must say last year was a little stressful because we had an ice storm that left us without power for 8 long days. As you might have guess this was about the time I had to send out my ornaments.Even our post office was closed making it impossible to get them out on time. Anyhow it all worked out and now it's that time of year again.

So here are my little pullovers all ready and waiting to be decorated and sent off to who knows where.I signed up for the swap here. If anyone wants to join in the fun, sign-ups are for 1 week only.Nov 1-Nov.7 Just log on and get the details from them. Wouldn't it be great if one of you would be on my swap team?

Red and white is my favorite Christmas combination and every year that's what I work with.
The sweaters seemed to need something after I was done ( I'm never done) so out came the embroidery floss and I stitched a little something on them.What do you think?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Holidays are coming!!!!!!!

Actually I think about the holidays all year long. I try to make all of my gifts but,come November 1 I start to panic a little.

Daughter Renee gave me this lovely teacup for my birthday.The teas come in individual pouches with a little leaf at the top. I think this is the perfect time to make a cup of tea and go over my list to see just how much I have accomplished and what more needs to be done. It's a scary job but I've got to bite the bullet and swallow that pill. Are you up to date with your gift-making? The bad part about this blogging business is you see so many things you can do and the list grows and grows but time available is not to be found.See I'm making excuses already.

Daughter Renee has the bug also. Last week my husband and I went for a corton tasting.For those of you not familiar with this it is a pork based spread similar to pate that at one time was know as headcheese,because the head of a pig was boiled down to extract every bit of meat and a spread was created that most french Canadians refer to as Corton. This was her first attempt and I have to say it was pretty darn tasty.I hope she's planning on making enough for the whole family.(hint-hint)

Something else that has kept us busy lately is Bitty. This summer a student from the University
was telling us why he was late coming in to work. It seems he used regular dish washing liquid in his dishwasher as he ran out of whatever he normally used It seems when he came out of the shower his kitchen floor was covered with about a foot of bubbles. And,his cat decided to have kittens!! Doesn't she look oh so innocent?
Sight unseen I agreed to take one of the kittens.Oh boy are we in for it.Bitty has the ability to run 90 miles an hour non stop.My husband thinks she needs a shrink. I don't have the heart to tell him I think this is normal behavior.............said the hobbit

Sunday, November 1, 2009

I know I know

I know I said I'd be right back.I can't believe how quickly the time goes.I think I'm having a problem with my organizational skills.

This is the shibori scarf we all worked on this fall.The pattern was simple enough and the design was made by sewing 2 ridges together then skipping one.I picked up one purl on either side of the ridge and just pulled the yarn thru.

Picture is a little fuzzy and color seems to be off.When all was said and done

this was the final results.I had to put it up to the light so you could see the strips that are visible.
After working on this project we all agreed that it's sort of like smocking with yarn. Not very earth shattering but,good to know................said the hobbit