Monday, October 19, 2009

Absolute Comfort Food & Sugary Sweet Cards

Good morning, all!

Hope your weekend was wonderful! Ours was great--too much going on for me to post yesterday, as I'd planned...oh, well! I was about to go out and pick strawberries at my friends' farm, but it just started to rain--we weren't expecting that! We'll see if it lets off in a bit.....I hope so, because I had some big strawberry plans, and they had strawberry shortcake for dessert written all over them!

Got lots to share with you again, today--first off--how about some sticky, chewy, messy, gooey breakfast??? That's part of the title of one of my new favorite cookbooks--and you know how I love cookbooks! I already had one by Jill O'Connor, which I'll share another day--this new one I just found in Target last week, and couldn't resist! I mean, just look at this cover--what's a girl to do?! From the delicious recipes & photos, to the cute vintage-style fonts and the scallop-edged pages, I was a gonner!




Not just for kids, the recipes in this book are to die for! Wait till I make her "Matterhorn Mountain Shortbread Cookies", or "Sticky Butterscotch French Toast"! Oh, my!!!

Saturday morning, I made the "Banana Split Pancakes" for my family. When a recipe contains bananas, Nutella, strawberries...how can you NOT make it?

(You really need to click on the pancakes & see this ooey, gooey pile close-up.....)

Yikes! How's that for a plate of flapjacks??? I might have spread the Nutella a little thick on this first plate, but my daughter Sarah didn't seem to mind!

Haven't gotten permission to give the recipe yet--but I'll try. Suffice it to say, the pancakes are loaded with smashed up ripe bananas, buttermilk, nutmeg, sugar, then just load on the toppings--YUM! Just do yourself a favor & get this cookbook!!!

I made up another soup recipe last year. This was another that I tasted at a restaurant & loved so much that I came home and tried to duplicate it--was pretty successful if I do say so myself! I've given this recipe out many times, and my daughter requested it for her birthday dinner, as did my Mother-in-law for her dinner this weekend. Here it is:


This is my Chicken Tortilla Soup. I love it! Definitely a family favorite--hope yours will like it, too! Unfortunately, when I make up my own recipes, I don't measure spices so much, but I'll try to give you a good feel for what to do. I'll have to get more specific next time!

JULIE'S CHICKEN TORTILLA SOUP

Boil 5-6 chicken breast, then shred.

In large pot, add 2 large cans fat-free chicken broth
chili powder--I just take off the shaker top & dump in at least 1/4 of the bottle!
cumin--same thing as the chili powder
garlic powder--just a few shakes
dash of cloves
salt & pepper, to taste
2-4 bay leaves
2 squares of dark chocolate, at least 60-100% cacao--very important!
Green Tabasco sauce--just dump in a bunch--not very hot, just adds excellent flavor
1 large can chopped green chilis
2 cans white hominy
1 bag shredded carrots
This is the first time I added a bag of frozen roasted corn--yum! I'll do it again!


Just add the chicken when shredded and let it heat through and simmer on low heat to let all the flavors mingle fabulously.

Juice 3-4 limes and have the juice on the table to serve with the soup, also broken-up fresh cilantro. After soup is served in the bowls, add a dash of fresh lime juice and some cilantro. You can also have sour cream and shredded cheese to add, if you'd like.

When I have time, I like to fry up my own tortilla strips--the kids prefer this, of course! If I don't have time, just a bag of chips will do very nicely!

Don't be afraid of my vague measurements--it's really hard to mess this up. Just season it up & taste and go from there! I hope you like this as much as we do...

Now, for the cards--had fun with these this weekend, just did a little whenever I could! I'm sharing a few of my favorite stamp companies with you today. You already know that I LOVE Crafty Secrets! Pink Persimmon and Paper Relics are also wonderful, vintage stamp companies that just make me happy!

This first card is from Pink Persimmon. The stamp set is called "Merry Christmas Cottage", and I used Crafty Secrets' adorable "Snow Bunnies" stamp set for the tiny snowflakes in the background. The cardstock used here was Ruby Red, Handsome Hunter, PTI Vintage Cream, and a Brenda Walton Christmas dp collection from last year.

I used my favorite Snow-Tex again for the snow, and added Dazzling Diamonds, a little crocheted lace, and pompom trim, along with my silver glitter, buttons, and that's about it for this one. It's such a cute little stamp set!

I just love "Paper Relics"! Just discovered it a few weeks ago, and the very kind designer, Hope Wallace, went through a bit of trouble to get them to me--had to go & pick them up from somewhere, as they weren't readily available when I ordered them--very sweet! She's a real artist--you HAVE to go & check out her site here...PAPER RELICS.


When I saw this set, I just HAD to have it! I love wonderful vintage fonts, and as you see, this has a couple of beautiful ones! The images are fabulous, as well, and so much fun to play with--I'll be doing much more with these, for sure!

I used Chocolate Chip, Cameo Coral, & PTI Vintage Cream for this card. Dyed some white grosgrain with Cameo Coral ink to match--hadn't done that for a while! Fun, but messy!


And last but certainly not least, my favorite Crafty Secrets! They've got some new Creative Scraps, which are so marvellous! Here's 2 images from the new "Christmas" Creative Scraps:


I love this little girl--just adorable! I had a couple of these napkin rings from Michael's that I keep pulling little bits off of for this & that, but I just snipped it, straightened it out, and used it for my border--I like it! The plaid ribbon is also from Michael's I used Real Red, Glorious Green (first time I've used it--ordered the cs 2 years ago & had to slice open the package for this!), PTI White, and Crafty Secrets' Earthy dp pad.

One more thing to show you--found this in my Halloween storage boxes. My Mom just made this for fun--probably in about 10 minutes, a few years ago, and it always brings a smile to my face when I see it....



Just some glass beads, wire felt, needle & thread, a touch of markers for the sweet face, and you get a fabulous little pumpkin girl a' la Mom!

There you go--that's what I've been up to this weekend--what about you? What did you do?