Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Special Gift!

I've known Stef since I was 3 years old. She's is, in fact, my oldest friend (time, not age ;-)) She got married last summer and promptly moved out of the country, so they haven't had a chance to print wedding pictures. For their anniversary, I had some pictures printed and put it in a multi-photo frame.

When a friend mentioned a folded album , I thought "Well, I want to try the album and I have lots of extra wedding pictures!"
And so this album was born.
It took me two hours, start to finish, for the entire album.
It doesn't hurt that they are an incredibly gorgeous couple who picked gorgeous wedding colors!!

I was able to embellish both the front folds and the backs. They had some beautiful photos of their day!

And it just arrived (having been shipped about three weeks ago!!) at their doorstep yesterday! Stef and Nick, I hope you enjoy your pocket album!
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Monday, October 4, 2010

Mmm Recipe time!

The weather here is *finally* getting cooler and that means it's time to bust out the soup and crock pot recipes! Yay!My first choice when we got home from vacation was a recipe a friend told me about awhile ago (Thanks, Stacy!!) Lasagna Stoup!
Start with 1lb ground beef and saute until browned. Mix in onion, carrot (and I added green peppers because nothing is "Italian" to me w/o peppers!).
Saute that for a few minutes with the meat.

Then add in a bit of water and chicken broth.

Add 1 lg can of crushed tomatoes and bring to a boil.

Put in 1lb of broken lasagna noodles (I recommend breaking them smaller than I did - we needed forks to eat that part :-) For some reason I had it in my head they were supposed to be 1" sections -- who knows why :-)
Tear and add 1 cup of fresh basil leaves.

Serve with a dollop of Ricotta cheese and parmesan cheese to top.
Here is the "official" recipe (for those like me that must follow recipes exactly)

 Lasagna Stoup

2 Tbls EVOO
1 lb ground beef sirloin
salt & pepper

1 large onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, grated
3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
32oz (4 cups) chicken broth
2 C water
28oz can Italian crushed tomatoes
1lb lasagna noodles, broken in to jagged pieces
1 C basil leaves, torn
1 C whole milk ricotta
grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese

1. In a soup pot, heat the EVOO over medium-high heat. Add beef, season with salt and pepper and cook unil browned. 3-4 mins. Stir in onion, carrots and garlic. Cook until softened, 5-7 mins. Stir in 2 cups water, chicken broth and tomatoes. Cover and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 15 mins. Stir in basil and season with salt and pepper.

2. Serve in bowls and dollop with ricotta. Pass parm at the table.

All in all, this got rave reviews from my family, except that we all felt there was *some* flavor missing. I will definitely be making this again, so hopefully we can figure out what we were missing this time! Awesome recipe for a cold fall day - comfort food at it's best, that's for sure! Thanks again, Stacy!
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