Here we go! I have been thinking A LOT about our Easter decor this year. I am so excited to share with you what we came up with… Clay-marble and concrete Easter eggs!
You will need:
Plastic eggs for molds
Oven-bake clay (white, grey and Black)
1. Start stirring water into the concrete to achieve a somewhat crumbly mixture. Loosely pour the mixture into the plastic Easter egg halves. Do not fill completely and leave a rough edge. Do not let it harden all the way, or it will be difficult to remove. I tapped mine out of the mold after a few hours.
2. Grab a large chunk of white clay, one-fourth piece of grey clay, and just a pinch of the black clay. Roll out the white clay into three pieces, the grey clay into two and the black into one. Pair each white piece with either a grey or black piece of clay.
3. Roll and twist all three pieces separately. Fold over, twist and roll three more times.
4. Join the three pieces. Twist, roll, fold and repeat three times and then coil and smash them together in a ball.
5. Divide the clay into four equal parts and roll them into balls.
6. Take a ball and make a mini pinch pot. Cup it around the dried concrete end and smudge together.
7. Bake per your oven-bake clay instructions, or for 30min at 375 if it does not specify.
8. Mix some grey paint and water. Wash the paint over the concrete and you are done!
Stay tuned for more this week on our intriguing mix of concrete and marble Easter tablescape.
Thank you for checking out our latest entertaining post. until next time, don’t wait for a special occasion – create one!
Top o’ the morning to ya and a Happy St. Patrick’s Day as well. Before I throw on me green attire and start eatin me Lucky Charms, I thought I’d give ya a little golden recipe known as the St. Patty’s Day Corned Beef Pot Pie. It’s filled with all the wonderful treats we Irish love so much. Corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, onions, swiss cheese, thousand island dressing and caraway seeds. Alright, alright, I need to stop this madness. First, let’s be honest, I don’t write with an Irish accent. Nobody does that. Heck, I’m not even Irish. I’m mostly British, which I found out a few years ago. I thought I was Irish and loved St. Patrick’s Day and all the traditions that went with it. Mostly the green beer, the food, the goofy old Irish songs and the talking like a leprechaun all day. Then I found out I wasn’t Irish. It kind of took the wind out of my sails with celebrating this holiday.
Let’s be honest though, St. patrick’s Day is another holiday that Americans use as an excuse for consuming copious amounts of green colored beer, eating massive amounts of so called Irish food, while playing Irish sounding music, while wearing green colored clothing with shamrocks painted on their faces. People of Ireland don’t eat corned beef, and they would never dream of ruining their beer by putting artificial green color in it. They are more likely to celebrate this day eating pork than beef. In fact, it was us Brits (did I just call myself a Brit.?, lol) that invented corned beef. The Irish considered the cow sacred. Cows weren’t eaten unless they were no longer of any use in the fields. Ireland only started producing corned beef for Britain because their tax on the salt needed to cure the beef was one tenth of what it was in Britain. Imagine that, people working around high taxes by going somewhere else to get what they wanted cheaper. Hmmm, I think a certain country was started by this same concept back in the 1600’s?
Well, you may not be Irish, and you may not like getting hammered while listening to Celtic music, but Jena and I think you’ll love this St. Patty’s Day Pot Pie. It’s a great way to use up the leftover corned beef and cabbage you’ll have in the fridge tomorrow. Or, you can make it your new tradition every year. Personally, I think it tastes better, but what do I know, I’m British. Until next time, remember to Cook with love and live to cook.
This pot pie combines all the flavors we Americans love to associate with St. Patrick's Day. Corned beef, potatoes, cabbage, thousand island dressing and swiss cheese enrobed in a flaky crust.
Author: Little Rusted Ladle
Recipe type: Entree
2 C. Small yellow potatoes, cubed
3 C. Reduced sodium chicken broth
1 C. Chopped sweet onion
1¼ C. Sliced carrots
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. Vegetable oil
2 C. Savor or green cabbage, cut into 1" pieces
2 C. Cooked Corned beef, shredded or cut into bite size pieces
2 C. Thousand island dressing
½ C. Swiss cheese, shredded
½ tsp. Cracked black pepper
Salt to taste
1 Box Refrigerated pie crust dough (enough for 2 crusts)
2 Tbsp. Rye flour, optional
1 tsp. caraway seeds, optional
In a large saucepan or dutch oven, simmer potatoes in chicken broth until barely cooked through (about 10 minutes).
Meanwhile, heat butter in a medium skillet over medium heat until melted. Add onions, carrots and garlic and cook until carrots are crisp tender.
Add cabbage and cook an additional minute or until softened.
Stir in flour and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring often.
Add potatoes and broth mixture and stir until thickened.
Stir in dressing, cheese and pepper. Cook until cheese is melted and mixture is thick.
Fold in cooked corned beef and remove pan from heat to let cool. Transfer mixture to a container, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or until completely cooled.
Meanwhile, remove pie dough from refrigerator and let rest for 10 minutes.
Sprinkle half of the rye flour onto a clean surface and unroll one pie dough over flour. Sprinkle with half of the caraway seeds, then roll pie crust out until circle is about an inch bigger.
Place in pie pan and trim edges to about a half an inch hangs over the edge.
Sprinkle remaining flour on surface and unroll remaining pie dough over flour. Sprinkle remaining caraway seeds on dough and lightly roll over dough, allowing seeds to be pressed into dough.
Spoon cooled filling into dough lined pie pan.
Place remaining dough circle over filling and roll in edges to top of pan.
Crimp edges with your fingers.
Transfer pie to a foil lined baking sheet. Make small holes in pie for venting.
Bake in oven preheated to 350 degrees for 45-50 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
Remove from oven, let cool for about 5 minutes, then cut into pieces and serve.
For a fun alternative, cut pie dough into shamrock shapes and spoon about ½ cup of filling onto one shamrock. Brush edges with egg wash, then top with another shamrock. Press to seal. Bake for 2--25 minutes.
With a title like heavy metal oatmeal smoothie, you’re probably expecting an article that discusses either a smoothie made from oatmeal and heavy metal, or one you would drink while listening to Metallica or Megadeath. I have been known to turn the volume up to eleven while listening to many metal songs in my car, but this article is about the wonders of not only that ancient grain known as oats, but a super hero fighting tandem known as parsley and cilantro. Not quite as exciting as those Marvel super hero’s, but then again can Ironman Tony Stark remove lead, copper, mercury or aluminum the way cilantro and parsley can? Come on, his name is Ironman, he’s more likely to give you heavy metal poisoning than help lower it. Can Captain America lower your blood pressure or give you the dietary fiber that oats can? No way Jose’. Oh sure they’re macho and cool and all that stuff, but when you need help fighting off those enemies of your body naturally, those guys are nowhere to be found.
All kidding aside, heavy metal toxification can be a serious issue for many people. Lead and mercury can find it’s way into the body many different ways. As we’ve seen on the news, the water we think is safe can sometimes be loaded with it. Just ask the people of Flint, MI what they think about lead. As someone who grew up in an age where lead was in everything, it can be easy to enter your body and never leave. So what’s the big deal with your body having heavy metals? Well, lead, mercury and aluminum can cause chronic health issues. Mental confusion, muscle and joint aches, headaches, memory loss, digestive problems, food intolerances, allergies, vision problems and fatigue are just a small list of symptoms caused by heavy metal poisoning. Trust me, I just found out I had high doses of lead in my body and it has been there quite awhile. Hey, maybe I can use that as my excuse on why I did so poorly in school as a child? Must have been all that paint I was eating. Ha, ha. Well, now I have a natural herb that just might help get the lead out, and I’m not talking about zeplin. Cilantro’s benefits don’t end with helping remove heavy metals. It is also a powerful anti-inflammatory, helps reduce bad cholesterol, eases hormonal swings during menopause, promotes liver health, and a host of other benefits. Parsley helps support kidney function, can help inhibit cancerous tumors, relaxes stiff muscles and a number of other benefits.
We decided to combine some leftover oatmeal,(you can use quinoameal, or buckwheatmeal as well) in case you still had some, with cilantro, parsley, coconut water, almond milk, fresh apple, honey and ice to create a healthy smoothie loaded with super hero powers to help your body fight off those annoying villians. It tasts good, it’s refreshing, cheap and easy to make and a great way to finish our ancient grain month with a healthy bang. So the next time your feeling a little sluggish, confused, or have annoying muscle aches, pick up some ancient grains, cilantro and parsley and throw them in a blender with some milk, fruit and ice. It may just keep the doctor away better than that lonely apple. It certainly can’t hurt. For more information about how to use cilantro as a heavy metal remover, check out this article from Natural Society. Until next time, remember to cook with love and live to cook.
Finding a healthy snack to keep you going during the day can sometimes be difficult. You can only eat so many almonds before you start feeling more like a squirrel than a person. What about dark chocolate you say? Oh sure, pounding down one or two dark chocolate peanut butter cups is pretty awesome. Right up until the sugar rush wears off and you find yourself needing a blankie and a nap. You can’t be napping when you’re in a killer Fit Bit step challenge with your girlfriend, who happens to be high energy and very motivated. What you need is not just two great tastes that go great together, but maybe eight great tastes that happen to also be very good for you and give you lots of energy.
We’re talking Energy Bites. A protein packed combination of old fashioned oats, almond butter, dried cherries, pistachios, orange zest, toasted coconut, honey, mini dark chocolate chips with some chia seeds and ground flax meal for added protein. These tasty bite size balls taste delicious, and are guilt free. They’re also very easy to make. 15 minutes from start to finish. As a matter of fact, I was craving some while writing this article, so I went down to the kitchen, made a batch and ate two before coming back up to finish writing this article. Want a healthy snack for the kids? Check. want some homemade energy bars for your next camping trip? Done. Need that boost of energy to get you to 10,000 steps so you can keep up with your motivated girlfriend? Got it.
Don’t thank me, thank the ancient grains. Because once again they came through in the clutch. See you next week, when we’ll show you how to use that leftover oatmeal with a popular herb to help rid your body of heavy metals. Until then, remember to cook with love and live to cook.
It’s week two of ancient grains month, and for this week we are showing a few examples on how to use that leftover ancient grain meal you made last time. In case you forgot, we discussed how easy it was to add some basic ingredients to a slow cooker before you go to bed and by morning, you have creamy quinoameal, oatmeal or buckwheat meal.
I made some buckwheatmeal recently by mistake and found out it tasted pretty darn good. Buckwheat groats, when cooked like oatmeal, has a very hearty and nutty flavor. It’s also very filling. So I wasn’t surprised when I had some left in the crockpot. Leftover buckwheat meal does not reheat very well. Once it cools, your more likely to have success using it as mortar for building a house, then enjoying a warm, creamy bowl of it.
I was just getting ready to throw it away, when I thought to myself “self, why not add some eggs, and a few other ingredients, and make little soufflés with it?” A filling, healthy breakfast again sounded like a great idea. Especially since the outside thermometer was showing 5 degrees above zero. In the past, I would prepare individual egg strata’s for the kids in the winter. They are leftover cubed bread, eggs, cream, cheese, sausage and bacon. The mixture gets baked in small soufflé cups, then drizzled with maple syrup. They are in no way healthy. But what if the bread, cream, cheese, sausage and bacon were eliminated and replaced with ingredients such as brown rice flour,a little baking powder and a few other items that would give these updated stratas flavor without the fat or calories?
Jena and I experimented with a few versions. We used ingredients like olives, fresh basil and sun-dried tomatoes for an Italian version. Green onion, cilantro, green chiles, pepper jack cheese and Mexican seasoning for that south of the border flair. Canadian bacon & pineapple for a Hawaiian treat. Generally, you can put anything you want in this mix, and it will workout. Spoon the mixture into well greased muffin cups or molds, then bake them in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Top with assorted coniments and enjoy.
Sometimes, it just takes a little thought to turn a cardiologists nightmare into a healthy, satisfying and inexpensive breakfast or brunch treat that will keep your whole family full and happy. We’ll be back next week when our ancient grains go into snack mode. Until then, cook with love and live to cook.
These protein packed egg soufflés are similar in texture to muffins, but without any gluten. It's a great way to use up leftover oatmeal or any grain meal you have leftover.
Author: Little Rusted Ladle
Recipe type: Breakfast
⅔ C. Leftover quinoameal, oatmeal, or buckwheatmeal
4 lg. Eggs, beaten
½ C. Brown rice flour
¼ tsp. Sea salt
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Combine leftover meal and eggs in a medium bowl until well blended. Stir in rice flour, baking powder and salt until well blended. Pour mixture into well greased molds, soufflé cups or custard cups until half full. Add desired ingredients such as cheese, meat, veggies, herbs, or seasonings to each cup until almost full. Place filled cups on a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool until cool enough to remove. Run a knife around the edge if they stick. Serve.
These can be made in advance, cooled and frozen until needed up to two months ahead.