Showing posts with label Prince. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Prince. Show all posts

Friday, June 1, 2012

Sun Dried Tomatoes in Herbed Olive Oil

It's been nearly a year and a half since I made this wonderful Sun Dried Tomatoes in Herbed Olive Oil, and since I wanted to pin this to Pinterest to my "pickles and jam" board, which needed more home canned goods, I thought it would be a good idea to post it again.
For the recipe; click on to the original source: Sun Dried Tomatoes in Herbed Olive Oil
I have to admit, I did make a very nice dinner a week ago, which consisted of a light salad from my dear friend Angie, @ Angie's Recipes
photo, courtesy from Angie's Recipes
I actually made this salad, along with bake haddock with a gratin topping, and shared it with a friend of mine. She wanted us to celebrate Prince's life...which I thought was a little odd...but, why not? I took photos of the salad, which was really very nice, but I'm my worst "self critic" and deleted the photos! The only thing that was different; is the sweet potatoes were served on the side, and the baby spinach I purchased also was mixed with baby arugula, which was just perfect. Thank you Angie, for your amazing recipe, as for all the others, especially the most beautiful breads that Angie bakes.

Yesterday, my daughter Lora and I went to Costco to get a few items...you cannot go to Costco, for less than $100. even if you shoot for $50. minimum which some people can...but it's almost impossible! She stocked up on cookies, juices, and popcorn for the kids' parties at the end of the year parties, and I requested a box of their superb croissants which is so, so, good! You can have them for breakfast, fill them with whatever you like. For lunch, I sliced some cold rotisserie chicken breast which I purchased at my local Publix supermarket, and topped it with coleslaw that I fixed from a already shredded cabbage in a bag, and mixed my honey mustard dressing!....so, so, yummy...(not photo of that, either)

I will be sharing some of my "thrift finds" with you, from yesterday! Since Goodwill is so close to my daughter's neighborhood in West Palm Beach, every time I go to Lora's house I have to stop at Goodwill to see what they have. Apparently, Mikasa, and Studio Nova are connected, which I did not know until now. What really is nice, that companies like that, and others donate discontinued items to Goodwill which happens to be BRAND NEW...and it was my lucky day!
I just love, love this modern serving bowl with the platter...brand new, from Studio Nova!
  Just love the cheerful colorful polka dots, and the shape of the platter, and the bowl!
must have been my lucky day! $7.97 for the set!

I found this Tupperware set...don't even know if its a set, but these smaller pieces were inside of this "classic" Tupperware from the 70's, or 80's...brand new, as you can see. They don't make this high quality any longer.
Love the beautiful brick color, and the sturdy material. You just cannot find this any more...brand new...brand new!
I kid you not..this was the actual price of this most amazing Tupperware, that for some reason was brand new!
I love this crystal vase, bowl, or container...another brand new product!
Just look...from Pier 1 Imports...check out the price! I will be using this for my sea glass, collected from my beach, or place a nice large candle, or even for a vase...so many uses!
A beautiful stainless steel mixing bowl...just the right size, I need! Love this little bowl!

 Price of this bowl....$1.91...price is not shown up from from glare!

A crystal bud vase...there was no price on this vase...I asked how much, and I was told that it has to be $2.99...only, because its crystal, and because it has some beautiful design...which does not show up on the photo!
My most favorite...of favorites...Baby's Breath! Cost?....$3.99, and it will last you for a week, changing the water for a nice fresh one, each day, adding a little bit of whit vinegar each time to the water, along with ice cubes!
My favorite, of favorites...Baby's Breath!...love, love, Baby's Breath, just by itself!



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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Popovers...and Good Bye!

No...I'm not saying Good Bye...although, I wanted to take a break, which I did for a week, and then again, just recently, with all the stress and making my final decision to have my precious, and loyal companion, Prince, my beautiful Maine Coon kitty. On Monday, May 21st, we had to part and say our last "Good Byes." I will tell you more about it at the end of my post. After all, this is a blog about food, and thrift, and I should concentrate on these, but it's very, very, difficult to do so while my heart is weighing so heavy with grief!

Since this Monday, I don't know how I functioned...well, not so good! I'm glad I had my guest post ready for Ping by last Sunday evening, and another 2 guest posts for the month of June for Lizzy, and Veronica. You know how it is with some people? When they are stressed and under pressure, they shop, and shop!

I also do that...did that in the past, spending money needlessly for some things that I didn't need. The only difference for the last 10 years, I have learned how to budget, save money, and shop wisely.

Thrift shopping is such a fun thing to do, especially when you find useful, expensive, sometimes practically all new items, for fraction of the cost that you would pay full cost. Just take a look at this cool popover separated cups...very heavy duty, and non-stick...it really was brand new, but I only paid $2.99 for it at my local Goodwill. I think you can even make mini cakes, or muffins in them...very, practical, and useful! I also found a great Bread Book, a soft covered 1983 HPBooks that has amazing yeasted breads and rolls, just don't know how the Popover recipe ended up in this book. It certainly does not have any yeast, and it oh, so easy to make.I love the breads, rolls, and biscuit recipes in this book. The cost?...$1.49 for a beautiful book with photos, instructions and great bread recipes! I also order amazing books from Amazon.com...just love, love all the things they have on Amazon!


Popovers
adapted; from HPBooks Breads

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1 cup milk, room temperature
2 eggs, room temperature
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil

Generously butter (I used cooking spray) 8 (5-to 6-ounces) custard cups, or 10 muffin cups, or 6 popover cups. Place custard cups on a heavy baking sheet. Place muffin cups, popover cups or baking sheet on center rack of oven.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. (230C) Combine all ingredients in a BLENDER. (seriously, a blender.) You can use a food processor or small bowl of electric mixer. Blend until batter is smooth, scraping sides of container, if necessary. Remove hot baking cups from oven; spoon in batter until 2/3 full. Immediately return filled cups to oven. Bake 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees F. (175 C) Bake 20-25 minutes longer or until browned.

Run a knife around edge of baking cups to loosen popovers.

Note: After batter is prepared, it can be stored at room temp.. for 2 to 3 hrs. before baking. Keep oven door closed during the first 30 minutes of baking.  A draft will collapse popovers. Popovers have a moist interior. It's important that you have the milk and eggs at room temperature, and the popover, or muffin pans preheated.

My beloved kitty, Prince has ended his life on Monday afternoon, on May 21, 2012...after a long illness that he has endured for the last 2 years. He was my constant companion for the last 15 of his almost 20 years. My daughter is the one who originally had him for the first 5 years, after finding him at her apartment, during her early college days.
Prince has been  a loyal companion to all of us...a very sweet, intelligent kitty. He has literally wasted away at the end, and I insisted that I will not have him put down as long as he is able to eat, and be able to walk. A sudden change came over the last weekend...on Monday, he refused to eat, and his poor legs gave out after a few steps. I knew right there that I have to quickly make the choice. I was able to comfort him, and say my last Good Bye...as did my daughter, and grandchildren, when I brought Prince over to Dr. Eric, as instructed. He will surely be missed by all of us. I did all I could to keep him comfortable, and prolong his days...but there's a higher power, who decides the end is here!

IS THERE A PET HEAVEN?
While there is no decisive answer to the question, “Is there a pet heaven?” a few things are clear indeed. First, pets bring tremendous joy to their owners, and can teach them a great deal about compassion, kindness, and mercy. Second, many pets live their whole lives in the service of their owners, trying to please them, make them happy, and cheer them up when they need it. Third, if there is a heaven, then there is a God, and they are His creatures. All of these things give tremendous plausibility to the idea that.... yes, there is a pet heaven, waiting for all of the good animals, after they die!

Photo of my beloved Prince...at the young age of 5, when he came to live with me...nearly 15 years ago! May you rest in peace...you will always be in our hearts!



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Friday, May 11, 2012

Spicy Red Bean Stew

Do you sometimes just browse through blogs, from other blogs, by just clicking over to a blog with s "shout-out?"...well, I do that quite a lot lately, and get so distracted with what I was originally set out to do.
I was recently commenting on a blog...trying to comment on a blog, that did not happen, and I got "sidetracked" to another blog, that caught my eye...such as this Spicy Red Bean Stew!

I'm linking the recipe to the blog, where I have spotted this wonderful spicy Israeli Red Bean Stew, that actually reminds me of chili...a vegetarian version...and oh, by the way, I just found this awesome small "bean crocks"...set of 2, at Goodwill for a ridiculous 79 cents each!
Without any further ado, please check out this blog for the recipe, all the way from Israel!
 Mimi, @ Israeli Kitchen
The only adaptation I made...was, that I chopped 1/2 of a green pepper, and used 2- 15 oz. cans of Red Gold diced tomatoes. I also thickened the bean stew, as I usually do, with removing 3/4 cup of the liquid from the stew, and adding 3Tbsp. of flour, mixing it smooth, and adding it back into the pot! I must say this is as "good as it gets"...
Do Not use canned beans, as Mimi suggested not to, as well. You don't want to miss out on the special nutrients, that only comes from the dried beans.
For the recipe; click here>>>Spicy Red Bean Stew
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Thank you for all your good wishes, about my hands injury...it's been about nearly one month now, and I'm just about all healed now. You all have been so kind and caring, and I do appreciate your thoughtfulness. No fun getting a nasty bite from your own pet (cat)...but you have to be understanding of the situation, and take care of the bite immediately, because infection sets in right away...which in my case it did, but it's all good now, and Prince is still around, 90% blind, from cataract, and almost deaf, but still is eating, and has not other issues other than being very, very frail and thin...still a trooper, still getting around, amazingly knowing where his food is, and his favorite lounging places (sometimes missing the jump to the bed, and sofa)...other than that he is still around, being guided by the younger little Persian kitty, that entertains him and sits by him when I'm not home! That's what I call a real "buddy!"

Happy Mother's Day!

To all mothers, grandmothers, step-mothers, and soon-to-be-mothers...may you have a lovely day full of sunshine, happiness, and much love... that you so, deserve!
Cheers!

My Mango Daiquiri recipe ...(with, or without the alcohol)
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Friday, April 27, 2012

Stracciatella=Italian Egg Drop Soup

Don't you agree about the pretty gold and brown colors on that pretty soup, or caffe latte mug?...well, it's a thrift find! I purchased a set of two @ Goodwill, for a $1.49 each. The bottom matching gold plate is a dinner plate...also a "thrift find" (made in Portugal)... from several months ago, is a perfect match for the mug. Definitely a "decco" mug, from the 1950's perhaps; judging from the design.
I'm still not back into full action; as far as cooking or baking, but I could not resist making this super-easy soup, since I have so much eggs left over that has to be used up before the expiration date...but even after the date on the egg carton expires, you can still use it for at least 1 week!
I'm feeling much better now; and Prince is still around...not wanting to leave my side. Infection is almost all cleared up now. I am so grateful to all of you who commented, wishing me a speedy recovery, and expressing your concern for my sweet kittty Prince, who is going to leave soon...on to "kitty heaven"
A huge thanks for my dear friend Lizzy, and also to daughter Lora, who is so caught up with her work, the children, and her own food blogging...now, perfecting her focaccias! (still waiting for her guest post...end of the week.)
The recipe for the Stracciatella, is a very easy one, and it works really well when you need a light but super easy comfort soup, especially good curing a cold, as well! I just have this memorized, but you can change this around for the way you would like it!







Stracciatella=Italian Egg Drop Soup
my adaptation from the original source

1- 32 oz carton of chicken, or vegetable broth
or 2-15 oz. cans of chicken, or vegetable broth
1 Tbsp. of chicken, or vegetable bullion paste,
added to 1 cup of hot water
1 bunch of fresh parsley, chopped, and divided in half
a dash of chile pepper flakes
2 to 4 eggs, beaten, with half of the chopped parsley
1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano chees, grated

In a medium saucepan, heat the chicken broth, add the 1 cup of the water with the bullion paste, and heat to a boil. When it comes to a boil, whisk in the eggs, with a fork in a streamline, slowly, so that the eggs fall down into the broth  and form strands. (do not add the eggs all at once)...it's important to use a fork, that is easier to stream into the liquid. Add half of the grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, the chile pepper flakes (optional)...and add the other half of the chopped parsley, and it's ready within a few minutes of simmering, slowly.
Serve with the additional half of the grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and add a little more chopped parsley, for garnish.

Note: you can also add fresh spinach into the simmering broth, for color, and flavor...then, you can omit the parsley!




Have a wonderful weekend, and thanks again for your kindness and support!
Hugs,
Elisabeth...a.k.a. Lizzie



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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Raspberry Streusel Bars...and a Guest Post

First things first...I would like to thank all of you for your kind comforting, and encouraging words regarding my cat Prince, and my injured hands...which is a whole lot better now. It's healing very nicely, and as for Prince, we're taking one day at a time. As long as he is eating (even though, thin and frail)...his spirits are good, and he can pretty much get around  with minimal vision. He's alert, and sweet as he has always been, but we both know his time is nearing and I have to say good-by to him!
I am so blessed to have such nice friends that I met through blogging...truly caring, and loving dear friends. It's as if I've know them in person, already!
I am so thrilled to have my friend Lizzy from That Skinny Chick can bake...offering to help me out to guest post...oh, I did mention that my daughter Lora will do the guest post, and then Lizzy, but we had to switch it since Lora wasn't quite ready with hers yet!

Well, it turned out even better, not realizing at first that this is my very first guest post on my blog, and my blog is nearing two years soon!
So let's bring out the bubbly, and celebrate Lizzy for my very special honor for her first guest post on my blog!
Thank you Lizzy, I'm truly honored!
xoxo

Lizzy, is an amazing baker...every fabulous cake and dessert recipe is down to a "science," so precise, and accurate. She is a super kind, and wonderful person. She will be the first one to offer help when someone needs it. When you check her blog, every recipe is "tried and true"...just like one of those TEST KITCHENS where day test each recipe. You can feel rest assured that when you try out one of her recipes, that you will be so pleased and will always remember where the recipe came from. I told her in the past, that I already started a folder, just from her recipes.

She will tell you how we met for the first time, the two friends...one Lizzy, and the other Lizzie (that's me)



I am thrilled and honored to be guest posting here on Food and Thrift for one of my dearest blogger friends.
Lizzie joined Foodbuzz, a huge food blogger community, one month before I did…and was the first to befriend me and show me the ropes.  As my other Foodbuzz friends know, there is a huge learning curve….and Lizzie offered me tips and words of support and advice. Plus, she confided that she also had the same nickname, just spelled with an “IE” instead of a “Y.” We bonded immediately.

So when I heard that she had injured BOTH hands and was unable to cook (a food blogger’s nightmare!), I offered to guest post for her. I know she would do the same for me…she’s just that kind of gal. I baked these raspberry bars for a recent bridal shower and am delighted to share them all with all the Food and Thrift fans while Elisabeth recuperates.
Heal quickly, my friend! xoxo


When I prepare for a dessert buffet, I make sure certain categories are covered: chocolate, lemon, cheesecake AND something fruity. Cook's Illustrated does a wonderful job offering fool proof recipes...with detailed instructions...so when I came across these bars, I knew they would be perfect for the shower.

These were easy to whip up...and after finishing up a much more time consuming recipe for cheesecake pops, that was truly a blessing. I only had time to snap a couple quick photos, but I guarantee that raspberry fans will love these!



Raspberry Streusel Bars~

Adapted from Cook's Illustrated

2 1/2 cups flour
2/3 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt
16 tablespoons (2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons butter 1/2-inch pieces, at room temperature
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup quick oats
1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped
3/4 cup raspberry preserves
3/4 cup fresh raspberries
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 375º. Line a 9 x 13-inch pan with non-stick foil so it hangs over the edges. Or use regular foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

Using mixer, combine the flour, sugar and salt at low speed to combine, about 5 seconds. With the machine on low, add 1 cup (2 sticks) of the butter, 1 piece at a time, then continue mixing on low for about 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.

Reserve 1 1/4 cups of the flour
sugar and salt at low speed to combine, about 5 seconds. With the machine on low, add 1 cup (2 sticks) of the butter, 1 piece at a time, then continue mixing on low for about 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.

Reserve 1 1/4 cups of the flour mixture and set aside.  Evenly pat the remaining flour mixture in the bottom of the prepared baking pan. Bake until the edges begin to brown, 14 to 18 minutes. Leave oven on.

While the crust is baking, add the brown sugar, oats and pecans to the reserved flour mixture and mix to combine. Using your fingers pinch the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter into the flour and oat mixture until the butter is fully incorporated. Pinch the mixture with fingers to create small clumps; set streusel aside.

Mix preserves, raspberries, and lemon juice in a small bowl, mashing the berries into small pieces.

Using a spatula, spread the filling evenly over the hot crust, then sprinkle the streusel topping evenly over the filling without pressing down on it. Bake 22 to 25 minutes till topping is lightly browned and filling is bubbling.. Cool to room temperature on a wire rack, 1 to 2 hours; remove from the baking pan by lifting the overhanging foil. Cut into squares and serve.

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Feta Cheese LOVE...and taking a short break!

Tomato, feta cheese, fresh mint, and red onion salad with lemon, and white wine vinaigrette
Tri-color tortellini salad with feta cheese, and Greek olives and white wine vinaigrette
Since I have a blog about "food" which naturally is a food blog, also I do have it listed as "thrift"...previously "finds" as well. I still find fabulous thrift finds...just when I happen to walk into Goodwill and something will just "pop" out to greet me, but my main focus still is FOOD and being THRIFTY!

As you have seen my Spanakopita in my previous post, I used the same feta cheese in two of these dishes, as well!
At Costco, or another food club, you can purchase the same amazing Greek feta cheese...not the pre-crumbled kind, but in one solid block, which stays moist, and you can dice it, or crumble it yourself. For a 2.65lb. of Greek Feta Cheese, I paid a little over $10. ...prepared 3 different kinds of dishes with it, and I still have enough to use for a beautiful Greek salad. So actually, you have enough for 4 different kinds of things to use it in...which is about $2.50 pr each dish, that serves up to 6 to 8 servings. What a fabulous DEAL!

So now, I would like to let you in on a "little secret" that I wasn't going to mention...but then again, I'm back in the same situation as in my last mention on my blog, about the "posting".
Although, I do have a GUEST POST ready for my dear friend, Ping @ Ping'sPickings, which I successfully have made just about a day or two before I had this accident on both hands that will be preventing me from blogging....(sure, sure, excuses, excuses! LOL)


Some of you, who doesn't know about my beautiful kitty named Prince, is nearly 20 years old now...we're just calculating the age from the time my daughter Lora found him at her doorstep crying, about 17, or 18 yrs ago at her apartment door (close to her college she was attending) He was left behind by the previous owner still with the tag on his neck...owner moved, and I think Prince just did not want to leave his premises. Apparently he was well known in the area by the people, and the neighborhood cats that were all his buddies, hanging around the plush Key West style area at the N. area of the Palm Beaches.

The photo on the right...Prince from 1998, when I adopted him from Lora, since she was living in Italy at the time. He is a pure breed Main Coon...tall, about 11 lbs, with gorgeous shimmering soft white-and-black hair, and bushy long tails. The most handsome male cat you've ever seen. So sweet, and gentle, as well.

Well, I announced a few month ago that I may have to have Prince put down because he is wasting away...he is now, about 4 lbs...has thyroid problems, has glaucoma, almost deaf, but still as sweet as he always has been...still remembering the 7:00 wake up call for me, to jump on my bed to remind me...still jumping up on the sofa by the living room window...I don't know how he recognizes my footsteps but he knows I'm coming upstairs...still eating...and a LOT! every 2, 3 hrs wanting to eat again, so now I just give him the same leftovers in a clean dish, and he finishes it!

I cannot make this awful decision to put him down YET, when he is still alert, sweet, and caring...but two days ago, something terribly went wrong. Since he does not groom himself, I clean his hair with "handy wipes" wet disposable towels, and brush his hair but not as often because he get snarls, and his skin is sensitive.

I will not prolong...although, I'm still hesitating to tell you that my sweet Prince bit both of my hands which at the time I didn't make much of it, just cleaned it up, and put a band aid on it. That was TWO days ago.

I do understand no-one likes to have their hair pulled, "you'd be mad too," is what my attending nurse said! Poor Prince freaked out...while in my lap, he snapped at my left hand, leaving two puncture marks over, and under my left thumb (can't bend my thumb;ouch)....I did get the snag out of his hair, and when I put him down, he freaked out even more, and bit my upper right hand, quite deep, and tore the skin to almost two inches...looks like a #7  nasty infected scar now!...the worst part is, that both my hands been inflamed, and swollen...getting better now with strong antibiotic, and antibiotic heavy cream!
Wouldn't you know, when it happened, all I said..."Prince, that wasn't nice"...last year at this time, almost to the exact day is when I sprained my ankle, and now this!
Instead of worrying about my hand at the time, I asked Dr. Eric to look at Prince...and again, he suggested to put him down...I'm in such a dilemma...Prince is his sweet self again...as he has always been, calm, and nice...fighting to stay alive!

So, I will be resting, taking my antibiotic (which makes me drowsy)...will try to comment on your blogs, but will not be posting for now...no cooking, or baking, but will be enjoying all your mouthwatering and delicious foods, and amazing desserts you post!

My daughter Lora @ CakeDuchess offered to  do a Guest Post for me this weekend, and I may be "knocking" on your food blog door to ask if you could do a guest post for me!


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Monday, February 14, 2011

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY...and a Giveaway!

If someone asks you...What does Valentine's mean to you?...how would you answer that?...As for me, I would say that to me it means a day to show your loved ones how much you care, and how much you love them. Not just gifts and cards, but in words and expressions! I'll be honest with you this cake I made with a cake mix...yes, boxed cake mix, and not my own...but, I doctored it up so well, that I was so inspired to be creative with the frosting, which really is from "scratch"...and being more creative by adding something pink or red, which happened to be a can of lite cherry pie filling that I had in my cupboard from this summer, that I did not get to use for my cheesecake. So, I decided to share my little heart shaped cake, which was baked in my heart shaped spring form pan, which was a thrift find...brand new Wilton's, for $1.99 retailing at least $16.99. I have gotten so much use out of this, that it's for sure, a keeper.
How can you not love this yummy cake filled, and frosted with real chocolaty goodness, and the oh, so yummy cherry filling, which is drained from the liquid, and save the cherry liquid to spread on top of the chocolate frosting.
Last minute dinner at my son's house...not knowing if I should go, my kitty Prince being so sick for the last couple days...not eating, just moping around, not letting me sleep at night...he was pacing up and down, I thought for sure this is it, since he is so old, but still so full of life and energy. How can you not feel sad when your pet gets ill?! I took this special little cake to my son's house, we shared it after a fabulous meal, and then off to my daughter's to share the other half of the cake...while they were in the middle of their fabulous home made sushi dinner, that Fabrizio made...even the little 4 year old grandson, the little guy, loves sushi...so much for that, I went there to pick up my beautiful roses that they gave to me.
2 dozen beautiful roses, that I received from my family...they told me they bought it at Costco, since they were shopping there on Sunday. Isn't it so thoughtful? A favorite kitty mug, and a bouquet of roses, and "I Love You, MOM" ...HAPPY VALENTINE'S...how much more would a Nonna, and a Mom want from her children, and Grandchildren. This is what Valentine's is about. Not the "Bling" or $$$...but a thoughtful simple gift, and to let your loved one know how much you care about them!