Thursday, April 29, 2010

Getting Crafty (Part One)

Ok so that was quite the productive weekend. Jen (my gourmet & crafty sister in law) and I had planned on just making strawberry jam last weekend. Well 1 project turned into 14 projects. lol.. It was fun. Most of the recipes came from the following books: Ecobeauty, Organic Beauty, Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It, Well-Preserved, & Preserving the Harvest. Check out the picture below.

Drum-roll please... We made 3 kinds of strawberry jam: Strawberry Jalapeno, Strawberry Blackberry, and Strawberry Orange; 2 kinds of homemade ketchup (which is amazing); Baby food Dog Biscuits; Cranberry Vinegar; Chocolate Massage Bars; Brown Sugar Lip Exfoliator; Vanilla Sugar Body Scrub; Healing and Moisturizing Lip Balm; Oats and Honey Soap; and Beeswax Soap.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Mmmm.. Homemade Pizza

One of my homemade favorites is Pizza. Pizza at home is so yummy, easy, and affordable.  You don't have to have a stone oven or even a pizza stone. Although, a pizza stone is a great investment. I love ours, it was $25 and makes the pizza crust crisp and crunchy. When I make pizza for dinner for 4 persons or more, one of pizzas goes on the stone while the other goes on a regular baking sheet. Both ways are delicious and satisfying.

Usually I just buy pizza dough from our local grocery store in the bakery section. I've attempted to make the dough over the years and it never turns out well.

Pizza Ingredients

- Olive Oil
- Cornmeal
- Bakery Section Dough (for the pizza stone)
- Refrigerator Pilsbury Pizza dough (for the baking sheet)
- Favorite Tomato sauce
- Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
- Goat Cheese
- Ball of Mozzarella Cheese
- Mushrooms, thinly sliced
- Broccoli florets
- Shallots, thinly sliced
- Pepperoni, thinly sliced
- Pineapple, crushed or canned
- Chopped fresh Basil
- Pesto
- Grated Parmesan
- Crushed Red Pepper
- Truffle Oil

Ingredients are completely subjective and vary by preference. You can do any variety that suits your taste buds.


Pizza Stone Pizza: Caramelized Veggie and Goat Cheese

1. Place pizza stone on the lower rack of your oven. Preheat oven to 450' for 45-60 minutes.
2. Let the dough sit out at room temperature
3. Saute (or Roast) the mushrooms, broccoli, and shallots until caramelized
4. Place pineapple in colander and put a heavy pot on it, to squeeze the liquid out of the pineapple
5. Flatten dough out with your hands on a slightly floured surface. Starting at the center and working outwards until the desired diameter - 10-12 inches
6. Sprinkle corn meal onto preheated pizza stone and place dough onto the pizza stone
7. Brush the dough with olive oil
8. Spread pesto and tomato sauce on the dough
9. Layer the toppings: veggies, pineapple, pepperoni, and basil
10. Crumble the goat cheese and fresh mozzarella on the top
11. Bake in oven for 15-20, until the crust is golden brown
12. Lightly sprinkle about a tablespoon of truffle oil

Baking Pan Pizza: Hawaiian

1. Grease the baking sheet with olive oil and place the refrigerator dough on it
2. Spread pizza sauce on to the dough
3. Put the pineapple and pepperoni on to the dough
4. Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella
5. Bake in oven for 12-15 minutes until crust is golden brown

Serve hot and with grated Parmesan and red pepper flakes

Monday, April 12, 2010

March 30th Share

On March 30th, I picked up our organic produce share to make colorful Easter dishes and fresh salads. Our box included: 2 pineapples, pears, fair-trade bananas, strawberries, oranges, mangoes, lemons, apples, asparagus, scallions, yellow cherry tomatoes (YUM), spinach, avocados, cucumber, and zucchini.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Cain Concept - Library Edition

The 2000 Cain Concept Library Edition is a real treat. The Cain Concept is based on the classic blenchland Cabernet Sauvignon that made Napa Valley famous. The Concept is a blend on Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and Merlot. This combination of flavors develop into a complex bouquet and a refined, rich and balanced finish. The Library Edition was bottled without filtration.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Organic Produce Pick-up

On March 15th, we picked a most mouth-watering organic fruits and vegetable box. This box was very fruit heavy, but delicious. We received Florida strawberries, blueberries, Kent mangos, Fair-trade bananas, tangelos, carrots, sweet potatoes, plum tomatoes, pineapples, spring mix, cherry tomatoes, and cucumbers. Also, received Swiss Chard, which I included in the Winter Minestrone.