December 22, 2007

More recipes

One thing I like about blogging is that my blog can serve as an online recipe box. This is really handy for me when I am away from home and want one of my recipes. I've added a couple this morning that are great for party food. This is my favorite type of food to prepare and these recipes are always requested anytime I serve these dishes. Both of these are adaptations of Pampered Chef recipes, so they are really quick and easy. Enjoy!

Shrimp Stuffed Mushrooms

Yield: 6 Servings

1# mushrooms, stems removed
8 oz. cooked salad shrimp
1/3 C grated parmesan cheese
1 lemon
2 t parsley flakes
1/2 C chive & onion cream cheese spread
1/2 t dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, pressed

For crumb topping:
4 t butter
1 clove garlic, pressed
1/4 C dry bread crumbs

  1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F
  2. For shrimp filling, chop shrimp. Place in mixing bowl. Add 4 teaspoons lemon zest and parsley flakes. Mix together. Add parmesan cheese, cream cheese spread, mustard and garlic. Mix well.
  3. Stuff mushroom caps with shrimp filling.
  4. For crumb topping, place butter and garlic in microwave safe mixing bowl. Microwave on high 20-30 seconds until butter is completely melted. Stir in bread crumbs. If mixture is too wet, add more bread crumbs.
  5. Place mushrooms into a baking dish with the filling side up.
  6. Sprinkle with crumb topping.
  7. Bake 18-20 minutes or until topping is golden brown and filling is hot.
  8. Serve immediately.

Sweet & Saucy Meatballs

Yields 10 servings

40 meatballs (I use the frozen pre-made kind from the grocery)
1 8 oz. can jellied cranberry sauce
1/4 C ketchup
1/4 C orange marmalade
2 T packed brown sugar
1 T worcestershire sauce

  1. Prepare meatballs as directed on package.
  2. In medium sauce pan, combine last five ingredients. Heat until sugar is melted and all ingredients are mixed well.
  3. Add hot meatballs, stir.
  4. Simmer on stove for 5-10 minutes
  5. Serve hot

December 21, 2007

Fab Find

If you've read my 100 list, then you know how much I love santa decorations. So, it should come as no surprise that I fell instantly in love with this.

It is handmade from vintage fabric. How incredible is that?

I purchased this from a husband & wife team from Cincinnati at Christmas Village last month. I was amazed by all of the wonderful things she makes out of vintage fabrics. They don't have a website, but you can email them here if you would like to make a purchase.

December 20, 2007

103 years ago today... great-grandmother Olive gave birth to a baby girl who would one day become my fathers mother. She named her Ona... no middle name. After giving birth to 13 children, she had since run out of ideas for middle names, so Ona Mowrer it would be.

I have been blessed in my life to have had two wonderful grandmothers. Both smart, skillful and independent women. Today, I celebrate what would be Gramma Ona's 103rd birthday. She left this world 4 years ago in October and I think of her so often and miss her tremendously. I have very few regrets in my life, but one of them would definitely be that I didn't spend as much time with either of my gramma's during my early adulthood.

There are so many things I love about my grandmother.

She was a trailblazer and never even realized it. Unlike many young women of her day, she graduated from high school. She married a few years later and had three boys: Gerald, William and Lawrence (my father). During the height of The Great Depression she and her boys were abandoned by her husband. Being a single mother in those days was looked down upon, but she was committed to raising her boys. In an era where women did not work outside the home, she took a job as a seamstress in a shoe factory, where she worked until the factory shut down and she retired some 40 years later.

She was green before it was cool. She grew her own vegetables, baked her own breads, recycled everything! She was definitely a "waste-not, want-not" kind of lady.

She was a domestic diva long before Martha Stewart was even born. I swear she could cook, bake, grow and sew anything. I loved learning from her.

Some other fun facts:

  • She loved yoga.

  • She walked everywhere. She never owned a car or had a driver's license.

  • She cut her grass with a manual push mower (no gasoline powered mowers for her) until she was in her early 90's.

  • She put out a big garden every year and tended to it each day.

  • She loved to wear a little sun/bucket hat.

I think my fondest memories of her relate to my birthday and a special tradition she began. As a little girl, each year for my birthday, she would bake me a lamb cake. It is a homemade angel food cake baked into a lamb shaped pan. It's frosted with 7-minute icing and coconut flakes. I can recall so vividly getting that big box in the mail. Dad would put it on the table and carefully cut it open, causing all of the real popcorn to come flooding out onto the table. For the rest of my life, this will always be my favorite birthday cake. I am blessed to have her special pan and her hand-written recipe for that cake.

Happy Birthday Gramma! I love you and miss you!

Happy 39th Anniversary to Mom & Dad!