Sunday, July 28, 2013

A Minor Kitchen Change

Sometimes even the most minor of changes can make such a difference and that was the case with my new addition to my kitchen . A local gift shop was having a sale on most of their Mackenzie Child "stuff" . I had been in there just a few days earlier looking for a gift for a friend but couldn't help but browse through some of these beautiful things that were on sale .

Yesterday after pondering over it for a while I decided I had to go back and wanted a new tea kettle and a new container to hold all of my cooking utensils . This is the before .

I have had the green Le Crueset tea kettle forever as well as the utensil container . I didn't really NEED to replace them but was ready for a change . I have also for many years admired the Mackenzie Childs "stuff" .
Here's what I bought . My new floral tea kettle and holding all my cooking utensils a hand painted flower pot which is perfect since I keep so many cooking tools for quick reach . I didn't want them matching but coordinating .

The colors work perfectly in my kitchen and I swear it makes better tea . I just love the crystal knob on top of the lid especially since I use crystal knobs on most of the cabinet doors in my kitchen . I am particularly fond of floral's as well .

The flower pot , not necessarily to be used as a utensil holder but it works for me . I can have loads of utensils in this container .

Change is a good thing even if they are very minor . I smile each time I walk through my kitchen and I think adds a little whimsy to my kitchen .

After sharing my minor kitchen changes I felt this over whelming need to also share some new photos of my grand daughter . This past week I kept one of my grand daughters while my daughter had to go to the Dr . She is expecting in September and this will be our seventh grand child . I took advantage of the opportunity to get some photos of my little grand daughter .

She was wearing her new dress that I had just bought her .

I keep lots and lots of toys at my house for the grand's but her favorite is this doll and the doll must have a stroller , which she does . She strolls this baby doll all over the house and as you can imagine we are talking up the soon to be arrival of a new brother or sister , they want to be surprised .
I hope each of you have enjoyed your weekend and the new week to come . I am sharing this post for Met Monday hosted by Susan at Between Naps on the Porch

Thursday, July 18, 2013


Yesterday I made a new quiche recipe that was absolutely amazing . Probably not on anyone's diet list but this recipe was worth going off a diet even for one piece . I think this recipe is the absolute BEST quiche recipe I have ever eaten and I have eaten in a lot of French restaurants .

Believe it or not it came from the Pioneer Woman's , Ree Drummond's cookbook . I say it like that because although I have both of her cookbooks I rarely cook from them . I happen to see her prepare this on one of her programs and it sounded delicious so I decided to try it myself . For the crust I used Ina Garten's Perfect Pie Crust recipe that was printed in her Family Style cookbook . It's my favorite so I didn't want to change but it is very similar to the recipe that Ree recommends .

Ina's Perfect Pie Crust

12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening
6 to 8 tablespoons (about 1/2 cup) ice water

Dice the butter and return it to the refrigerator while you prepare the flour mixture . Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse a few times to mix . Add the butter and shortening. Pulse 8 to 12 times, until the butter is the size of peas . With the machine running, pour the ice water down the feed tube and pulse the machine until the dough begins to form a ball . Dump out on a floured board and roll into a ball . Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes .

Cut the dough in half . Roll each piece on a well-floured board into a circle, rolling from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough to make sure it doesn't stick to the board . Fold the dough in half, place in a pie pan, and unfold to fit the pan. Repeat with the top crust .

Note: I only used half of this dough recipe but the other half freezes well. It will freeze for up to six months . I also have a very large marble slab for rolling out pastry dough . It's heavy but very useful when rolling out dough because it is a natural surface and stays very cold which is important .

This recipe comes from Ree Drummond's first cookbook, Pioneer Woman Cooks , Food From My Frontier .

Cowgirl Quiche

16 ounces white mushrooms , washed and sliced
2 leeks
2 tablespoons butter
8 eggs
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 cups grated Swiss cheese
Salt and black pepper to taste
 8 thin slices prosciutto (or any good ham)
1 recipe Pam's Pie crust, enough for a deep pie dish or tart pan

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F .

Place the mushrooms on a large baking sheet . Roast in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes , or until golden brown . Remove from the oven and set aside .

Meanwhile , slice off the tops and bottoms of the leeks and cut them in half lengthwise . Slice each in half thinly .Soak the leeks in cold water for about 10 minutes to remove any grit or dirt .

In a large skillet over medium heat , sauté the leeks in the butter until golden brown and beginning to caramelize , 8 to 10 minutes . Set aside .

For the quiche base , add the eggs and cream to a medium bowl . Whisk them to combine . Stir in the leeks , mushrooms , grated cheese , salt and pepper . Add the prosciutto .The mixture should be very thick ! Pour it into the pie shell , then cover it loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil to prevent it from getting too brown on top . Bake for 45 minutes , then remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes . Remove it from the oven and allow it to sit for at least 10 minutes before serving .

My Notes: This recipe really needs a 10-inch deep dish fluted pan with a removable bottom. I did not have one but instead used my fluted pie plate, it was not deep enough to hold all of the filling . I also used cremini mushrooms since I think they have so much more flavor and used an imported gruyere cheese instead of Swiss for the same reason and I prefer gruyere . You also have to be careful about how much salt you add since the prosciutto is very salty but yet sooooooooo delicious .

I always love using leeks in any recipe . They are much milder than onions but yet so flavorful .
Baby Portobello's or Cremeni mushrooms, they have so much more flavor than white button mushrooms . Having roasted them brings out even more flavor .
This was a little labor intensive but well worth it. It was absolutely delicious.
I loved the use of the prosciutto but it is very salty so you must be careful when adding salt . I don't like anything overly salted .
I did not get a photo of this wonderful quiche after it came out of the oven but it does brown nicely. My daughter arrived just after I brought it out of the oven with my grand daughter and they both stayed for dinner and were anxious to try it since it smelled heavenly while cooking . My two year old grand daughter LOVED it and I served her some blueberries with it fresh from our farm . She was a happy girl . What remained after my husband , my daughter , and myself had some served with a simple side salad , the rest went home with my daughter for her husband's dinner . I was told today that he too absolutely LOVED it .
I also set it on a sheet pan in case it spilled over while cooking . This was a huge hit with my family and I will prepare this recipe over and over again . I highly recommend it !!!!!

I am sharing this post at Rattlebridge Farm for Foodie Friday . There are always excellent recipes shared on this blog and you can click HERE to see them .

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Computer issues

Having computer problems and can't post from my iPad, no photos on my iPad. Now I know I should transfer some photos to my iPad or just take some photos with my iPad. My computer totally crashed so I hope my Tekkie can retrieve my photos. In the meantime I am taking lots of pics for future posts. Hopefully I will get it back soon.