Friday 31 August 2012

Samoas ~ The Girl Scout Cookie Clone

My husband (aka, "tt") loves the Samoa girl scout cookie and will purchase several boxes from the girls during the selling season. I was looking around for an interesting cookie to make and came across this one. I changed several things from the original recipe ( to give it my own spin and I have to say, that they came out marvelously! My only complaint was that I didn't make enough as they were spoken for rather quickly! Next time, I will make a double batch of these. I probably will be making them sooner than later!! I don't want you to be disappointed -if you are of the "slice and bake" cookie mind, making these cookies might not be for you. These cookies do take time and effort and a bit of skill. Some may call them tedious to make...I call them WORTH IT!! I broke the project up into two days so that you don't feel like you are spending too much time in the kitchen. It was totally manageable this way and one I would recommend. 

Wednesday 29 August 2012

Mexican Stacked Dinner! Ole!

 Football Season is upon us, and this is perfect for munching on during game. Chances are good you have a member of your household chomping at the bit, to watch football!!  Unless you live in another country, in which case you likely could care less about an American football game! This is also the perfect dinner for the kids! With school starting soon, this would be a fun to eat, one dish meal!

Monday 27 August 2012

A "Duck" blanket using Minky!

Moose and Bandit!

It’s no secret that Fall is quickly approaching and I must say I’m really excited.   It’s not that I don’t love Summer...…obviously I do, but there comes a time when a girl wants to dress in faded jeans, boots, sweaters, scarves and watch the leaves change colors. Even if the temperature hasn't dipped too much yet, the evenings are becoming noticeably shorter. It makes me all fuzzy and warm on the inside just thinking about it! Soon the pumpkins and apples will be appearing beside the peaches, corn and tomatoes.....ahhh, and, I just love watching the changing leaves! So much so, that Wee Bear and I are leaving for three weeks to see the East Coast leaves turn. I have loved the West coast color changes, all my life, going on long drives up to Kelowna, British Columbia over the North Cascades Highway, Highway 2 to Leavenworth and down the coast on Hy-way 1  through Oregon. This year we are going to New York, see a few Broadway shows, visit some friends and board a ship to Montreal!! Yippeee! There are multiple stops for eating lobster rolls in Maine, salmon in Nova Scotia and viewing the beautiful East Coast Fall leaves through the St. Laurence seaway to Quebec, then to Montreal and all it has to offer. Wee Bear has been brushing up on his French and I have downloaded a app to my Iphone that translates! Can't wait!!

Friday 24 August 2012

Blueberry Streusel Muffins!

I have been thinking about adding a blueberry bush to my garden and I think I just got the incentive after visiting my brother-in-law and sister-in-law's house over the weekend for a BBQ. As I wandered through their backyard with the dogs, I came across a blueberry bush that was bursting with fresh ripe blueberries ready for picking! 

I asked my sister-in-law if I could take a bag of blueberries and she said sure, but under one condition...If I made something with them and shared. I said "of course!" and immediately thought of blueberry muffins! Everyone was excited, even Wee Bear, who said he loved blueberry muffins. 

Wednesday 22 August 2012

TT's Favorite Chicken Salad!

 I have been making this salad for 20+ years. My children loved this one growing up, and it continues to be a popular choice, for a gathering on a warm Summer day. Admittedly, Sweet One has been making it more than I in recent years, it became a popular choice in her family as well. But, last weekend TT and Sweet One invited the family to their "Block Party". I made this salad as it is a perfect one to transport.

Monday 20 August 2012

Easy Italiano pasta salad! È fantastico!

I love macaroni salad. I’m also particular, and picky about macaroni salad. Seriously! If I am going to eat macaroni salad it has got to be worth the carb load! I have issues, is what I’m saying. I don't like macaroni salad that is gloopy or overly vinegary. I do like a macaroni salad that is creamy, but still light, I like it with a subtle blend of spices and I like macaroni salad with a confetti of color, good texture, flavor and spice.

This side dish took about fifteen minutes, working time, to make. It was so easy. But more than that, it was absolutely delicious.

Friday 17 August 2012

Rum Cake...a must bake!

I have been making this cake for many years. It all started with a colleague I worked with at a dialysis company 6 or so years ago. She would make this delicious and moist cake and bring it into the office to share. You could smell the aroma of the rum and butter from your desk, it was heavenly! Since then, I have taken this recipe with me and baked my own version to share with other colleagues, family and friends for years. It makes about 12 servings so it's great for a crowd or large dinner gathering. It would also be great served with afternoon tea. 

Wednesday 15 August 2012

Stuffed Pork Tenderloin on the rotisserie!

Happy 100th Birthday Julia! . She was born on August 15, 1912, in Pasadena, California, and died August 4, 2004, just before her 92nd birthday, in Montecito, California. 

I was lucky enough to meet Julia and take a class from her. She was amazing, friendly and full of wit! I have most of her cookbooks but, this is my most prized. It is the first cookbook, first print, 1961. I bought it used, as I was 9 years old. It is not signed :-(

However, I was able to have her personalize a copy of "The Way To Cook", at a class I took from her in 1989. She will always be special to me.

 Now, out in time for what would have been the late chef’s 100th birthday on Aug. 15, today, Bob Spitz has written "Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child", a soup-to-nuts biography of her life. Spitz takes readers from her childhood in Pasadena, Calif., to her days at Smith College and from her work for America’s first intelligence agency during World War II to her introduction to serious cooking in France. While the book begins with her first television appearance, it backtracks to her youth, and readers don’t get to her enrollment in cooking classes at Paris’ Le Cordon Bleu until more than a third of the way into the book. Happy Birthday Julia!

To me a house is not a home without good food. My Mom was a excellent cook, and I grew up with homemade organic meals everyday. I didn't know any different! We raised our beef, chicken, pigs, ducks, goats, milk cows, fruit's, berries and vegetables. My Dad and my brother's were/are hunters, so, add to the diet, deer, elk, moose, carabou, bear and all species of fish. My Mom pasteurized the milk and made us fresh whipped topping and fresh butter from the cream. My jobs were many on the farm, but one of my favorites was to gather the eggs from the chickens, without getting pecked!! Then, bring them into the farmhouse and candle, (to look for embryo development). My egg candler looked like this.

After, the candling, I would weigh them and put them into cartons according to size and weight. I loved my job!

Fond memories of growing up in the country on organic food. I didn't know anything else!! 

Today, I am offering you another main course to make on your rotisserie. In past blogs I have covered the craze over bacon. This combines bacon, Gorgonzola and pork. It is another easy recipe you can make on a week night.

Monday 13 August 2012

Back to health Monday! Caprese Boats!

 My family loves Caprese, but, are always looking at ways to cut the calories and fat. This is a great way to make it healthy and it is transportable for a picnic or pot luck! Wee Bear likes to nibble while I am preparing dinner, he usually goes to the snack drawer, picks out some chips and has a few before dinner. I like to make these before dinner, so he has a lighter, healthier appetizer. These would be a nice lunch too. They are very easy!

Friday 10 August 2012

A Private dinner with Chef Jason Wilson! Beef short rib!

Oh what a night! Chef Jason Wilson (Crush restaurant) honored us with a private dinner, in our home.....well, it was to die for! The event, my daughter Holly's birthday! Ten guests were treated to a memorable evening, that none will forget.............ever!!


Wednesday 8 August 2012

Peanut Butter Bacon cookies

Wee Bear left to have lunch with one of his fraternity brothers that came into town, so I got busy. Wee Bear is allergic to peanuts, so, "while the cat's away, the mouse, did play"!!

You have seen the surge of bacon with all sorts of other flavors, I still do not know why, with the health crisis in this country, that we now are adding bacon to everything? But, I always say, try everything in moderation! Bacon and peanut butter!?  Peanut Butter and Bacon! Hmmmmm, well let's give it a go! If you have children this is perfect!

Monday 6 August 2012

Cornish game hens on the rotisserie!


You know how much I love to use my Barbecue and my rotisserie unit. I am hoping I can convince you how easy it is and you will drag yours out, wipe off the cob webs and do this!! It is easy! Pair it with a nice Sauvignon Blanc or Chardonnay.

Friday 3 August 2012

Summer Cranberry Vinaigrette delectible!

Summer is officially here and Seafair in the Pacific Northwest is underway! It is so fun! 

I came up with this new Summertime recipe a couple of weeks ago and thought you may enjoy it!! It is very simple! I love the colors!

Wednesday 1 August 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookies made by TINK!!

Happy Birthday Holly! Holly and I, at the top of Mt. Si, earlier this Summer! 

 August 1st is the start of Summer here in Seattle! It is also, my beautiful daughter, Tink's birthday!! This morning we have a hike planned with family and friends. Tonight, I have planned a very special party for her. Jason Wilson of Crush is coming to our home, to prepare an amazing dinner for 10 of Holly's family and friends. The menu is ....ahhh well over the top! And of course it will be on the blog! Jason and Nicole have asked to put the pictures on their Facebook page as well! Happy Birthday my dear daughter, you are amazing! I am so proud of you, as is Wee Bear!
 Holly recently spent a day baking and brought her treats to a family barbeque. One of the treats she made was "Chocolate Chip Cookies". Yeah, I know, we all have a family favorite recipe for Chocolate chip cookies. Well, try this recipe.... after you wrap your lips around your first bite, you will be dying another!!  These are over the top! I asked if she would stop by after work and allow me to photograph her making these magical morsels. Much to our delight, she did! Just make these, that's all I can say!