Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Flowery Bouquets, Browned Butter & Rosemary Shortbread...and a Sweet Gift

Good evening, all!  Hope this mid-December day has been beautiful and bright--and productive!  We're getting VERY near Christmas, aren't we?! 

A few things to share with you today...the first two are not very Christmas-y, but sometimes it's refreshing to have a little change!  I felt very flowery today!  Here are a couple of projects I made with Crafty Secrets' Vintage Postcard Kits:

This image is from the "Best Buds" kit--six beautiful floral images, ready to embellish to your heart's content!    Love the glittery bauble I found a while back...just hanging from the bottom.  Real silver shavings glitter all around and a couple of crystal rhinestones for just a BIT more shimmer!

A bit of a closer view...

This one comes from the "Family" kit--love this one!

Just look at those fat & fabulous roses!  Glittered them all up a bit, too!

...more silver glitter along the edge...

"Families Bloom with Love"...yes, they do!!!

Speaking of families, my sister Becky--who loves cooking & baking as much as I do!--sent me this delicious recipe yesterday...had to bake it today, it looked so tempting!

Browned Butter & Rosemary Shortbread

1 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar (white or brown)
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary (pull the leaves off the stems)
1 Tbsp. honey or maple syrup
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

In a small saucepan, heat the butter until it melts, foams and then starts to turn brown and smell nutty.  Pour into a mixing bowl, scraping out any browned bits on the bottom of the pan, and set aside.

Meanwhile, put the sugar, rosemary and honey or maple syrup into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until well mulched; the mixture will look like wet sand.  Add to the browned butter and mix well.  Add the flour, baking powder and salt and stir just until well blended.

Chill the dough for half an hour or so to make it workable, then roll into walnut-sized balls, palce them on a baking sheet and press down on them with the bottom of a glass or a cookie stamp, or divide the dough in half and press each into the bottom of a 9" cake pan, and press around the edges with the tines of a fork.  Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes (for cookies) or 255 minutes (for wedges), or until pale golden around the edges.  If you used cake pans, cut into wedges while still warm.

Makes about 1 1/2 dozen shortbread cookies.

Oh, my!  These are SOOOO delicious--I can't even describe the flavor to you--very sweet, savory and nutty--the rosemary is just scrumptious in them! 

I went with the brown sugar/maple syrup combination--turned out just beautifully!  Topped them with some raw sugar--love the way it looks!  Hope you like these--thanks, Becky!!!

Another dear blogging friend surprised me with a lovely gift yesterday...Hanne of Limogglitter is an amazing artist!  The first time I visited her blog, I just fell in love with her style!  You feel like you know her as soon as you see her beautiful profile photo--her personality just shines through!  I was so stunned when I opened her package and found these treasures:

Just look at this beautiful card! This would have been such an exquisite gift all on it's own! She does beautifully painted backgrounds on a board...I need to learn how she does this--it's simply luminous!

I was just stunned when I saw this sweet beauty!  What a lovely framed piece!  Hanne--you have such a beautiful style!

...and look at this beautiful lace! Beautiful wooden bobbins wound in string...I didn't even ask her if she made the lace herself...wouldn't surprise me!

Hanne,thank-you for these beautiful, generous gifts...you have certainly touched my life...thank-you!  Please stop by and see her lovely creations for yourselves!

In closing...I've been thinking so much about how fast time's flying by...about my daughters...my husband and myself...hard to believe how quickly it all goes!  I found this sweet Christmas picture of my daughters from 2000--almost 10 years ago already!

Chelsea, my oldest, comes home from college tomorrow--we just can't wait to get her! I think I'll  take a similar photo of them this year...just to see! They are much taller, so much more gorgeous, their teeth are much straighter...but the twinkle in each of their eyes is EXACTLY the same!

Hope you have a wonderful night with your families...Sweet Dreams!