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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

People I Love - Polka Dot Market

Hi Everyone!
As many of you know, I love bright colors, polka dots, and other whimsical things.  The best place that I have found to find many of these things is Polka Dot Market.  It is a great place to find all things Polka Dot!!!  From balloons, to plates and napkins and everything in between, she has it.  The great woman that runs that shop, Sally is so sweet and I just love buying from a small business owner and in the USA!



Remember these???? I love to use her balloons!!!! 
Check out her website and find somethings to love!  http://www.polka-dot-market.com/

Enjoy your nite!
Serena

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Mexican Sunday Supper

Hi Everyone!
Sorry for the delay...I was swept away on a suprise trip to Mexico!  So in honor of that, Sunday Supper is Mexican Themed!

  • 4-5 medium dried ancho chili peppers, stemmed and seeded
  • 4 cups chicken stock (32 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 4 slices applewood smoked bacon, chopped
  • 2 pounds ground turkey (mix of light and dark meat)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chipotle in adobo sauce, finely chopped and seeded
  • 1 rounded tablespoon smoked sweet paprika
  • A scant palmful of ground cumin
  • A scant palmful of coriander
  • 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 pinches ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 bottle Mexican beer (12-ounces), such as Negra Modelo
Suggested garnishes:
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Lime wedges
  • Scallions, chopped
  • Chopped raw onions
  • Lightly crushed tortillas
  • Shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Toasted pumpkin seeds
  • Diced avocado dressed with lime or lemon juice
Preparation
Place the anchos and stock in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a low boil, then simmer over low heat to reconstitute.
Heat 1 tablespoon EVOO in a large Dutch oven or large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and brown for a few minutes, then remove to a plate with a slotted spoon.
Add the ground turkey and brown and crumble the meat; season with salt and pepper. Add the onion, garlic, chipotle in adobo, paprika, cumin, coriander, cocoa powder and cinnamon. Stir and cook to soften, 10 minutes more. Add the tomato paste and stir for 1 minute. Deglaze the pan with the beer.
Puree the anchos and stock.
Add the ancho puree to the chili along with the reserved bacon. Simmer over low heat to thicken, 20-30 minutes. Cool and store for a make-ahead meal.


To reheat, reheat over a medium flame on the stovetop, stirring occasionally. Serve with the garnishes of your choice.
Thank you Rachael Ray for the great recipe!  Thank you Myrecipes.com for the great photo!

Adios! 
Serena

Monday, March 7, 2011

Sunday Supper - A Day Late!

Hi Everyone!  I am sorry that this is late, but I was thinking about Mardi Gras and wanted to get closer to Fat Tuesday!  Ok..delish food and drinks are generally what people celebrate with on Fat Tuesday as they generally give up something they love for Lent.  So, I thought something guilt ridden was in order!

Cheesecake Brownies!



Ingredients
For brownie batter
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
For cheesecake batter
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
Make brownie batter:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line with foil an 8-inch square baking pan and spray with cooking spray.
Melt butter and chocolate in in the microwave in a medium sized microwave safe bowl, stirring occasionally and keeping a close eye, until melted. Stir until completely smooth. Beat in with an electric beater the sugar, eggs, vanilla, and salt until well combined. Add flour and stir with a rubber spatula until just combined. Spread in baking pan.
Make cheesecake batter:
Beat cheesecake batter ingredients with an electric mixer until smooth. Dollop over brownie batter, then swirl in with a knife or spatula.
Bake until edges are slightly puffed and center is just set, about 30 - 35 minutes. Let cool completely then chill in refrigerator for at least an hour. When ready to serve, remove foil and bars from pan and cut into even squares. Serve chilled or at room temperature.


Enjoy your Fat Tueday and Check out my Etsy for new products!!!

Nite,
Serena

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Thursday DIY - Cake Toppers

Hi Everyone!  I have recently feel in love with different cake toppers.  I have been using alot of cake buntings to make a simple cake look super special.  I recently found, and feel in love with Blu Embelish .  They make ADORABLE cake toppers and have some great crafts on their blog.  I asked if I could share one with you and they said YES!  So here it is!

As shared by Blu Embelish

Let's get our supplies ready for the rose tutorial.  You will need a cloth napkin, a plate, and some bling!


Step 1:  Grab your napkin from one corner and begin fanning (like making a paper fan-hehe)

                                              Step 2:  Continue fanning the entire napkin




This is what the napkin fanning should look like when finished.


Step 3:  Roll from one end to the other...keep rolling!




                                  
                                    
                                           This is what the perfect rose should look like.

Turn it over and you also have a very beautiful rose!




Add some bling bling.

Check out the whole posting and follow their blog!  Super cute and great ideas!!!!

Enjoy your nite!
Serena

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Vendors I Love - Joshua By Oak

Hi Everyone!
Sorry that this has been the 1st post in a few days. I finally got sick...I fought it for months, but couldn't keep up my immunity.  Oh well...a few days, water, rest and medicine later and I am on the mend. 
Anywho, I wanted to introduce you to a woman whom I love!  Debra is the woman behind Joshua By Oak, a couture collection of pillows, bookends and other home decor.  I have used her pillows in a couple of parties.  Do  you remember this party?



And here is a sneak peak at a party that is coming up - it is Paris themed and her "Hopeless Romantic" pillow was a perfect fit!!! 


 Debra recently started her Facebook Page, so like her here. She is such a wonderful and talented woman.  Her pieces are amazing and I just want them all!  Take a peak, find something wonderful and leave her some love on her page! 
I hope that you all have a good nite!  Enjoy and talk to you soon!
Serena