Friday, September 12, 2014

Moving right along!

Fall weather is here to stay!  I think we've seen the last of the hot weather until next summer, hopefully.  Now is when I can really get outside and get work done but then there's always the inside calling too.  I picked up a few pumpkins at the Farmer's Market on Wednesday.....let the decorating begin!
I've turned a corner on the porch...who know's what day it is?  Day #10 now?  Oh well, it will get done eventually as long as I keep plugging away on it.  The porch will be my library and my porch "garden" where all my plants will reside and where I will be trying to grow some winter "crops".
I've gotten all my cookbooks out here now.  Whoa Nellie!  I had no idea I had so many until I got them altogether.  I have some old ones from my Mom too that I will show in another post. I keep my library books on the little ladder so they don't get lost in among my other books.  The plant on top of my "boom box" is a mint plant that I use in cooking.  I have no idea what the other plant is but it's survived so it's a good one in my book!
This Canada Dry shelf used to hold my pantry items and "back up" supplies but they are now back in the kitchen....and no, you do not want to see my kitchen right now! LOL! But isn't the porch looking good?   There will be more books going on the shelves there but I may need to put placemats or fabric covered board over the grates or I just may use the whole thing for plants.  It's a work in progress for sure.
I finally found my sour cream rhubarb coffee cake recipe that I used to make over on All Recipes
I made it and tasted it and it is exactly the cake I remember.  So good with a little whipped cream on top and a good cup of coffee or tea.  Thanks to my daughter for bringing me all the rhubarb as I have tried growing it here and to no avail even using the recommended variety for this region.
Yes, along with the cool temps and fall weather comes the urge to bake! LOL!  Enjoy!
Have a great Friday and what are you up to this fine Fall weekend?
Happy Trails!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

"Time for a cold one, Eddy! " (from the movie Vacation)

It was 97 today but felt like 103 degrees F. ...I just took a bath and now I'm "having a cold one"...

We're supposed to have storms tonight when the cold front comes in so I brought my mums in...the  ones I haven't planted yet. 
 But the ones in the ground from last year are looking great..........
I need to prune back the Russian sage.....
I think this is the last tomato for the season except for some cherry tomatoes.  See the Daddy (or Mommy) long legs?
And guess what else I got? 
Oh yeah, a new tablet!  I've wanted one for several years now but couldn't justify paying so much but this was on QVC as a TSV for $99.00!!!!!!   Life time technical support in the U.S.A.  and 6 months of Oyster for free!  By the time it all worked out and I opted for the "drop & spill" insurance it ended up at about $138 but still I thought it was a good deal and so far so good!  I'm in love!
This is an Acer Iconia dual core 7" tablet.  Now I can take it with me and keep abreast of the weather if I have to head for the basement tonight!  I hope I have room for all the "apps" I want to download...LOL!
Happy Trails!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

YOP Week #10

Fall is here!  The humming birds left this week, it finally cooled off last night,  I have the windows open today and the Iowa Hawkeyes won their game yesterday!  College football is so much more exciting than the NFL.  I used to work in Iowa City where "the Hawks" reside and went to my fair share of games and the best part was the food and the wonderful atmosphere of a college town. 
As for YOP's, they didn't get a lot of attention this week as I was in my Fall cleaning mode and I committed myself to a book club (Cozy Little House) last week, online at Goodreads
It's not the book club commitment, as it is laid back and only 1 book per month, but  I ordered 4 books on wait list at the library lending portion, trying to play catchup (never dreaming they would all come in at once) and 3 of the 4 came in and I have until the 30th to get them read.   And of course, it's walking weather again and outside chores now that it's cooler (it was 97 the other day) and cooking some Fall delicacies such as Ed Debevik's Pot Roast which I always cook at the first sign of Fall. He has a restaurant (or did years ago) in Chicago that I ate at on a business trip and I was able to get the recipe.  It is synonymous with Fall.  I will share the recipe at the end of the good!
As for my projects.....
I got a little farther on my second sock.  The top ribbing is done and now it's 6 inches of stockinette stitch (great for watching the games this afternoon, lol!) I have my next sock yarn picked out and need to order it.  Wait until you see it....LOVE!!!
 I crocheted some more on the hood of Bina the bear (pattern by Lalylala)
...loving this yarn
and I dragged out my KAL project...remember this one?  Sometimes I literally put things away and forget about them.  I am on block number 25 of 54 so almost halfway.  I'd like to make another one of these using scrap yarn and it is one of those that you could just keep adding to when you have the yarn.
Here's those book club books I need to read.  I haven't read them yet so I have no idea if they're good but they were recommended by someone in the book club.  I started this one already and so far it is interesting and very well written and grabs you from the first least it did me.  I'll do a full review after reading the whole book.   
I've not heard of this author.........
I've read Barbara Delinsky before and although I'm not into romance novels she is a good writer and 
at least she portrays her female characters as having some intelligence and a life of their own.
Here's the Ed Debevic Pot Roast recipe I promised you...if you don't like spice leave out the red pepper flakes and even if you do use sparingly.....those suckers are hot!  I prefer using cayenne pepper sparingly as it is spread more evenly throughout the dish whereas the flakes are hot if you get one in your mouth.

Ed Debevic's Pot Roast    (6-8 servings)
 3-3 1/2 pound thick sliced beef chuck arm roast (bone in if possible but good luck finding any)
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons of oil
1 large onion, cut into 1 inch pieces
4 large cloves of garlic, sliced
1/2 bunch celery, thick sliced
1 1/2 teaspoons dried crushed thyme or 3/4 cup fresh sprigs
4 bay leaves
3 tablespoons tomato paste
3/4 cup burgundy or dry red wine
2 cups aujus prepared from envelope mix
1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper, crushed red pepper (be careful with the pepper or leave out, I just sprinkle a little cayenne, very little and leave it at that)
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cups water

Trim fat, season with some salt and pepper, coat with 1/4 cup flour.  In a 4-5 quart dutch oven, brown meat on both sides in hot oil.  Remove meat, add onion, garlic, celery, thyme and bay leaves to drippings in pan.  Cook and stir 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender.  Stir in tomato paste and wine.  Simmer and stir uncovered for 5 minutes.  Add aujus, salt, pepper and red pepper (if you like).  Bring to a boil, add meat.  Cover and bake at 325 degrees F for 3 1/2 - 4 hours.  Remove meat from pan, discard bay leaves and thyme sprigs.  Mix 1/4 cup flour with water ( I use a small jar with a lid and cold water and shake it like the dickens!), stir into pan.  Cook and stir until thick and bubbly.  Cook 1 minute more and serve with the meat.
This makes a great gravy for over mashed potatoes and I usually serve green beans with it or a vegetable of your choice.  Enjoy!

Have a wonderful Sunday everyone and I'll be back to visit later after I get my roast on!
Happy Trails!