Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Favourite Drink Tuesday

Jack Frost's Cranberry Margarita

This recipe is adapted from a Betty Crocker recipe (Apparently, Betty Crocker enjoys a margarita too, who would have guessed?) Should have posted this months ago but that's life I am sure it will taste just as good now considering that this is a "never ending" winter!!
1 can frozen cranberry concentrate (12 oz.), thawed
1/2 can orange juice concentrate (6 oz.), thawed
1 c. tequilla ( I would sub in vodka )
1/3 c. triple sec
2 cans Sprite or 7up
5 c. water
1/4 c. lime juice
In a 3 quart container mix all of the ingredients with a whisk until well blended. Cover and freeze at least 24 hours until slushy. Rim margarita glasses with sugar. Scoop 1 c. of the slushy mix in each glass. Pour a dash or two of  Sprite or 7 up on top and serve. Keep any leftovers in the freezer for up to a week. Make this in the summer and enjoy outside under the sun. Yummy.
Relax...Respect...Enjoy... Dorri

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Pinterest Inspirations - Recipe Audition #3

Baked Spaghetti with Mushrooms
Adapted from www.foodgio.com

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Serves 8 - 10

3/4 lb spaghetti (I used the small package whole wheat 1lb maybe?)
1/4 lb ground beef ( I used 1 lb cos I didn't read the recipe very well)
1 small  onion chopped (I used 1 med red onion chopped)
2 garlic cloves minced
8 oz button mushrooms finely chopped
9 oz Cremini mushrooms finely chopped
2 tsp olive oil
13 oz marinara sauce (I used 1 jar 650 ml tomato 4 cheese sauce)
1/4 tsp crushed pepper flakes (didn't use but I did add Italian seasonings)
2 cups of spinach (I added this cos I could)
1 1/4 cups cottage cheese 2%
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Cook spaghetti like always
  • Brown meat, drain and remove from pan
  • Add onion, garlic and mushrooms in olive oil cook until tender
  • Add sauce, spice, beef and simmer for 10 minutes
  • Place half the pasta in a greased 13 x 9 pan, cover with half the sauce and the cottage cheese then half the mozzarella
  • Repeat the layer 
  • Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake an additional 10 minutes uncovered. (I likely cooked for 40 minutes and baked an additional 20 because I like the cheese to get nice and browned)
  • Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes
Very much like lasagna.... very easy and very very tasty!

Preparing the sauce
I also added a layer of spinach cos I could and we love spinach
Repeat the first layer after the spinach layer
Last layer of sauce and then add the mozzarella cheese to seal it all together
Done to perfection
Makes a lot for just the two of us. Good recipe to freeze a meal or two.

Relax... Respect... Enjoy....another Pinterest recipe that gets an A+... Dorri

Thursday, February 20, 2014

What I am Reading

The House Girl - Tara Conklin

Moving between antebellum Virginia and modern day New York. A suspenseful and heartbreaking tale of art and history, love and secrets and explores what it means to repair a wrong and asks whether truth is sometimes more important than justice. It seems as if my reading list lately is subject to deep discussions within my head and heart. I love the dual-period style of writing in this novel. Stories with in stories all compelling and revealing. The pages will fly by and the time will pass very quickly. Look forward to reading more from this author.

Relax... Respect... Enjoy... Dorri

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Perry's Birthday Appetizers

We celebrated Perry's birthday in Saskatoon with his family. I brought a little appetizer to enjoy at Angela's & Gary's before we went to the restaurant and this is what I came up with. Paired nicely with the red wine.
Disclaimer: I am not a cook so I just winged it, cookbooks for scaredy cats!! 

Perbears Stuffed Mushrooms
30 button mushrooms washed, drain upside down & stems removed
1 - 8 oz box creme cheese softened
1/2 cup whipping creme
1 can broken cooked shrimp
1 bunch green onions finely chopped (6 or 7 stems)
cayenne pepper
garlic salt
Brie cheese
1 pkg Bacon
  • Blend the cream cheese with the whipping creme until smooth
  • Add the pepper and salt to taste
  • Finely chop the mushroom stems and lightly saute along with the green onions, drain any excess juice
  • Drain and rinse the shrimp
  • Add the cooked mix and shrimp to the blended creme cheese. Stuff the mushroom caps with a teaspoon slightly round them off
  • Slice the cheese and add a small square to the top of each mushroom
  • Cut the bacon strips in half and place around the mushroom, use a toothpick to secure the bacon
  • Cook at 350 for 25 minutes and then broil for 5 minutes, they should be brown and bubbly and smelling like heaven
The assembled mushrooms can be refrigerated until you are ready to bake (Mine waited about 6 hrs no worries). There was easily enough filling to make about 50 mushrooms, leftovers make good cracker covers. I also sprinkled a pinch of black chia seeds before I put the Brie on just for kicks. Amazingly enough the bacon was well cooked and they tasted delicious.

Stuffing those little suckers
Ready to wrap them in bacon
Roll that bacon and stick em with a toothpick to hold it in place
Incredible....they cooked right and tasted like perfection
Have a little bite or two.... 
Courtney, Parker, Taylor and Gary at Rembrandt's, don't look so serious Gary
Dad & Mom Thomas and Angela in the private dining room
Happy birthday Perry, see the ghost of me in this shot.... cool beans hey? Notice the posers....kids hey go figure!! LOL
Beer with oranges in them...how strange? But amazingly kinda tasty
We ate at the restaurant in the Senator Hotel at 243 21st Street East in Saskatoon, SK. Rembrandts and I can honestly say I haven't had a meal like that in like forever.... it was fabulous. Everyone enjoyed their dinners. The steaks were to die for. The service was perfect. Surrounded by the love of family, lots of laughter filled the room.  The private dining room was great, fit 9 people just right. Pricey but worth it for my fiance's birthday. We will definitely go back there for another occasion for sure. Highly recommended!!!

Relax... Respect... Enjoy...and Happy birthday Perry... Dorri

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Lakehouse Update

Ceilings and Doors
It has been quite a while since I have updated the work on the lakehouse. Sawyer being born, travel to FSJ twice, Christmas, kids home for school break from Australia, travel here and there, shovelling snow, both of us had the flu, this that and the other thing.... but I am back.
We spent a great week working on the kitchen and front foyer ceilings and I have been getting lots of little jobs caught up and complete. Perry got the ceiling complete in the master bedroom bath upstairs. We put some trim up in the skylight tunnel. Some more lights were installed. Still feels like we bounce around working here working there.... but it's getting done. The bonus room pine is stained/varnished and waiting to be installed. That is the hold up on the bonus room flooring installation. I cannot wait until this happens.

I stained the doors with Old Masters Dark Walnut and absolutely love them. They are solid cherry Stallion Doors from Windsor Plywood. The color matches very well with the windows. I stained the hardest door first.... this door goes in the master separating the tubs/sink area from the toilet. 2 coats of varathane coming up next week. I might hang a gauzy curtain on the inside??
Just a lovely color!
The foamy brushes work very well on the smooth even wood and less stain is required. I wipe once to get the excess stain off and then a final wipe. In 3 days the varathane can be applied, 2 to 3 coats of that with a light sand in between coats. I use the vacumn to suck up the dust and then wipe with a damp cloth to prep the door.  
Picking the right profile was a headache but we are really happy with our choice. Simple clean lines. I plan on painting the top square for the pantry door with black chalkboard paint so we can leave notes and make lists on it. Not going to add the magnetic layer as it is a pocket door. 
13 doors to do, 8 are stained both sides now.
Per finishing up the last row of the ceiling in the foyer. 2" crown molding will cover the edge eventually.
The recessed lights still need the metal covers so we just have lights on pig tails hanging out on them.  Perry put up the centre light. Very nice to have lots of light.
Looking through from the front of the house to the back kitchen door.
Adding the trim inside the closet and framing the transom.

Next up after the doors are finished up will be staining and varnishing the 1 x 6s for the garage foyer entrance & main floor bath. Yay. Those are the last ceiling boards until we get back at the garage and workshop and that can wait. I think we have made our final choices on the majority of lighting that we haven't purchased yet. So many choices and so hard to find just the right one.

Happy Valentines everyone have wonderful love filled day tomorrow.
Relax... Respect...Enjoy... Dorri

Friday, February 7, 2014

What I am Reading

And Then I Found You - Patti Callahan Henry
It was very hard to put down. The author did a great job of conveying the emotions of the characters in the book, you could almost feel the struggle of of what they were feeling. It was a story of hard decisions and of love lost and found. Doors closing and opening. Start a new chapter in your life after you finish a chapter and wonder if you are on the right path. The happy parts outweigh the sad ones.

Relax... Respect... Enjoy... Dorri

Thursday, February 6, 2014

What I am Reading

The Husband's Secret - Liane Moriarty
Not very often do I read a book that has me discussing it with my better half constantly. Asking him his opinion and trying to understand what I would do if this ever happened to me. We had great conversations on the morality of life. I loved this book and I highly recommend you read it. Another plus was it took place in Australia and since that is where my son and wife are living presently I enjoyed the references to places I could google.

Cecilia accidentally discovers a sealed envelope addressed to her to be opened in the event of her husbands death. At first she doesn't even seem curious about opening it and then due to circumstances she is desperate to open it. Like Pandora's Box a myriad of chain reactions occur once the letter is opened.

It really makes you think about all the little things you do that don't seem to matter......the things that couldn't possibly have an effect on you or anyone else. 

Relax... Respect... Enjoy... Dorri

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

What I am Reading

12 Years a Slave - Solomon Northup

Read the book then watch the movie. Unimaginable but true story of ones man's struggle to survive being sold into slavery and return home to his family.

Relax... Respect... Enjoy... Dorri

What I am Reading

Me Before You - Jojo Moyes
 A very enjoyable book. Gave me some second thoughts and insight into someone else's shoes. Please read this and you will understand. This book will suck you in and will change your way of thinking on the way out. 

Relax... Respect... Enjoy... Dorri

What I am Reading

The Apple Orchard - Susan Wiggs

A very intriguing enjoyable read chock full of delicious recipes too. I love a mystery set in a romance novel. The characters were very likeable. A fast read to finally figure out the mystery.

Relax... Respect... Enjoy... Dorri