Home Tour…Not!!

I’ve been a lot little under the weather these past few days.  Appears as though I have caught a head cold so I have been camping out on the couch with my trusty iPad, my box of kleenex and my cold remedy tea with honey.  Poor me.  This has given me a lot of time to play on the internet and look-up some fellow bloggers.  It seems as though everyone I see offers a “home tour”.  This is where you get to go into their homes and see how beautiful everything looks.  How they decorate, what they make, how they live.  Well let me tell you it is very depressing.  If I wasn’t sick already I am now!!  I mean, have you seen some of these homes??  First thing I do is look at the pictures on the house tour.  Then I read the “About” section of the blog to see if…

Homemade Cavatelli

Ok maybe I’m on a pasta making kick AND a bread making kick these days. But really is there anything better? Except cookies…that’s coming next.. I love cookies.  I made my own ricotta cheese the other day just so I could make up some homemade ricotta cavatelli.  It was good…I mean seriously good, and it doesn’t take long at all if you have a handy dandy BeeBo Cavatelli maker!! Meet The BeeBo!! I just followed the recipe that was included with my BeeBo.  I did need to make a few minor adjustments ( I added 1 more egg and a tad of olive oil) but it turned out great.  Just ask the hubs. Making Cavatelli: 4 cups flour 1 egg slightly beaten 1 lb. ricotta cheese 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup of milk Sift the flour into a large bowl.  Make a well in the center and add the remaining…

Homemade Granola and Granola Cookies

I was going through my cookbook the other day and I came across a recipe for granola.  I used to make it all the time, putting it on everything because this recipe is the best and it makes a ton.  Ice-cream, yogurt, cereal, puddings!  I even use it to make my granola cookies. Granola 10 cups of old-fashioned rolled oats 2 cups of coconut 1 cup of wheat germ 1 cup of powdered milk 1 cup flax seed 1 cup of sunflower seeds 1 1/2 cups almonds – chopped, sliced or slivered Mix all of the above ingredients together in a big bowl. Dressing 3/4 of honey 1/3 cup of canola oil 2/3 cup of cold water 1 teaspoon of vanilla Mix dressing and pour over granola, stirring to coat well.  Place in a large shallow pan and bake at 300 degrees for about 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes…

Oreo Cookie Truffles

These are so decadent it is unbelievable how easy they are to make.  They require only three ingredients. Oreo cookies, cream cheese and chocolate. Take one package of Oreo cookies and run them through your food processor. Chop them up good, you don’t want any big pieces of cookie in there. Then add one 8 ounce package of softened cream cheese and give them both a spin until they are well combined. Roll into balls and then place them in the freezer for a few minutes to firm up before dipping. Melt one 12 ounce package of semi-sweet chocolate chips using a double boiler. You can also use one package of the white chocolate morsels.  When melting white chocolate it is best to use the microwave and add 2 tablespoons of shortening.  This will keep the chocolate from seizing up on you. Dip truffles into melted chocolate and place on…

A day in the sun!

The weather in my part of town has been pretty dreary lately.  It is January after all so I expect the snow and because it is New England I even expect the freezing cold.  But what we have been getting is rain and fog and mud.  Lots and lots of mud. Lots and lots of mud.  Oh, and poop. Today the sun came out for a little while and it was actually pretty warm so I grabbed the opportunity to let everyone out to play. First I took the Goatee Girls out for a walk and then I let them hang out in the back yard for a few hours.  It is all fenced in so I don’t have to worry about them wandering off.  I even gave them our Christmas Wreath to nibble on. Pip is exploring I think I even got a smile from Dutchess! Bambi enjoying the…

Rag wreaths

I have fallen in love with rag wreaths!  I’ve been seeing them all over the internet and finally found the time to actually try making one.  They are simple to do, they don’t require a lot of different supplies and you don’t need any artistic ability!  My kind of craft project for sure! Rag Wreath 12 inch foam wreath ring (or what ever shape you would like) 1 1/2 yards of fabric white glue ribbon for hanging scissors, skewer Cut the fabric into strips approximately 1 inch wide by 3 inches long.  These don’t have to be exact because once you put them onto the wreath you won’t even be able to tell if they aren’t perfect. Push the fabric strips into the foam ring using a skewer, dipping the end into a little bit of white glue first it hold it in place.  The skewer only needs to be…

Cherry Chocolate Kisses

When I was younger I worked at the Masonic Home and Hospital.  I did everything from nurses aid to physical therapy aid to pharmacy technician.  I learned a whole lot and met so many wonderful people.  One of those people was a women named Ann Needham who ran the Occupational Therapy Department.  She gave me this recipe and I’d like to share it with you.  It’s one that I make every year for Valentines Day because it is so good (cherry and chocolate?? Oh yea!!) and it just looks so pretty and Valentine-ish. Cherry Chocolate Kisses 1 cup butter, softened 1 cup confectioners sugar 2 tsp. maraschino cherry juice 1/2 tsp. almond extract 3 drops of red food coloring (optional) 2 1/2 cups flour 1/2 tsp. salt  1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained and chopped chocolate kisses, unwrapped In a large bowl combine butter, sugar, cherry juice, almond extract and food…

Homemade Cleaners

Last year I started making my own cleaning products.  It is really easy to do and very economical.  I like the fact that I know exactly what is in them and I don’t have to worry about any harsh chemicals because we have a a well and septic system.  This year I thought I would start the New Year by restocking my cleaning supplies so that I don’t have to deal with it later and that would free up some time so I can concentrate on other tasks. Out with the old..In with the new… homemade cleaners! (except my Thieves, love it!) With four men living in this house you can just imagine the amount of laundry that gets done on a weekly basis. I found that making my own laundry detergent is much cheaper and you can get everything you need right at the grocery store.  Plus I really…

Homemade Pasta

I love pasta and could eat it 7 days a week.  I especially love homemade pasta.  It is light and fluffy and cooks up in no time at all.  Once you try homemade pasta you will never want that hard stuff that comes out of a box again.  If you have never made it then I think its time you give it a try.  It really isn’t hard to do and if you have a pasta machine it can even be fun.  Put on a pot of sauce, some good Italian music, pour yourself a glass of Vino and get the family involved! Pasta dough 4 eggs 1 pound flour (3 1/3 cups) olive oil or water to soften the dough if necessary Put your flour onto your counter forming a mound.  Make a well in the center and put eggs into it.  Slowly begin to mix in the flour…

English Muffin Bread

I have been on a real bread baking kick lately.  I don’t know what it is about baking bread but I find it very relaxing.  Maybe its the kneading of the dough, or maybe it’s that it usually comes out pretty darn good without much effort.  Or more then likely it’s that I love to eat bread.  You can keep your sweets, your cheesecakes and pies… give me bread. English Muffin Bread A few weeks ago I came across a great recipe in my “Home Cheese Making” book by Ricki Carroll.  It was a recipe for English Muffin bread and it was made with the whey left behind from making goats cheese.  Seeing as I always have a few jars of the stuff in my fridge I thought I would give it a try and let me tell you it was amazing!  It is super easy to do, it doesn’t…