Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Surprise Brunch!


As I am sure most of you know, I took a very graceful spill down the stairs and broken my foot as well as sprained my ankle. I am in a walking boot and its a pain {in both the expression and the literal meaning}.

Anyhow, Kyle has been taking extra special care of me since then and has been more than wonderful. So I thought why not surprise him with brunch?

Here is what I made and played:

On the Menu: Turkey Bacon Wrapped Frittata with Foccacia Bread 
Orange Juice and Lime Water {Kyle had been wanting to try it}
Turkey Bacon Wrapped Frittata 
{Adapted from the Katie Brown Workshop}

Serves 2


6 slices of turkey bacon {or regular bacon}
Olive Oil
1/2 shallot {I used red onion}
1/2 bag {thawed spinach} or fresh arugula or spinach
3 eggs
1/2 cup grated cheese {I used an Italian Blend from Kraft}
salt and pepper

1/2)preheat oven to 350 degrees.
1) grease 2 small ramekins with olive oil. Place 1 strip of bacon around the edge of the ramekin. Place another strip of bacon around the edge that covers the gap from the first. Take the 3rd strip of bacon and cut it in half with cooking sheers {who knew this worked?!?} and place both halves on the bottom of the ramekin as best you can. 

2) mix eggs, cooked shallot {onion}, thawed spinach {or wilted arugula or spinach}, and grated cheese together with a whisk. Season with salt and pepper.

3) fill bacon lined ramekins with egg mixture using a measuring cup. Do not fill to the top as the egg will rise. 

4) bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until the tops of the eggs are golden and puffed up.
5) carefully remove from ramekins with towels or pot holders {they are hot!} and serve immediately. {they lose their fluff as they sit}.


Onion Herb Foccacia Bread
{also adapted from the Katie Brown Workshop}

serves 4 {we made it serve 2!}


1 package of pizza dough {the kind that comes in a roll}
chopped rosemary {eye ball it}
chopped thyme {eye ball it}
olive oil {for brushing & drizzling}
thinly sliced red onion
grated Parmesan {eye ball it}
salt and pepper {if desired}
1/2) preheat oven to 425 degrees
1) open package of pizza dough and roll out on parchment paper. Brush half of the dough width wise with olive oil. 

2)Sprinkle chopped thyme and rosemary on top {don't hold back}. Lay out onion slices and finally sprinkle with Parmesan cheese {again don't hold back}. Fold the other side of the dough over the top. 

3) repeat on the top of the bread. 

4) salt and pepper if desired
5) bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes {until golden brown}
6) cool {a bit} and serve with olive oil for drizzling.


final plate:

Yummy and Pretty

So that is what we ate and let me tell you Kyle was not only surprised and appreciative but thoroughly enjoyed the meal. See?

On the Playlist:

Frank Sinatra:

They Can't Take That Away From Me
I've Got You Under My Skin

Rosemary Clooney:

Be My Life's Companion <3

Natalie Cole:

Almost Like Being In Love
Thou Swell
Paper Moon


You're Nobody Till Somebody Loves You - Bobby Darin
Everybody Loves Somebody - Dean Martin

There were plenty more, but I thought this gives a pretty good idea. It was a great morning. Made me dream about the future. The peachy keen future. :) {wouldn't it be nice}.

surprise someone with a gesture of love today.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween Weekend 2010

Halloween 2010!

This Halloween was the best Halloween I have ever had. For me, Halloween usually consisted of me getting blown off by friends, or not being allowed to hang out with my friends. This year it was all about the family and it was wonderful. I am really big on traditions so this was pretty much a perfect weekend. 

We started out on Saturday morning taking family (+ Kyle) pictures at Lake Shawnee and taking naps and having random plans for most of the day. We ate dinner together and then at a rather late hour decided to make popcorn balls and caramel apples. It was a lot of fun, and its not often that you catch the whole family doing something like this together. 
Caramel Apples YUM! :) 

Apples + Kraft Caramel Pieces (in the baking aisle) melt as directed and then dip apples or drizzle with the caramel. Let sit on waxed paper and then in the fridge to solidify.
Making Popcorn Balls 

Popcorn Balls

Pop your own popcorn w/o salt/butter and set aside.
In another pot melt 1 stick of butter, 1 package of mini marshmallows (plus some if you want) and then dirzzle Karo corn syrup to your hearts content. 
Melt and stir to combine. 
Mix into popcorn and squeeze into ball shapes. 
Set on waxed paper to set. 
You can add candies or M&M's if you want, but it is much harder to get them to stick together that way. 
Wrap in cellophane or plastic wrap and enjoy!
Dad adding the gooey mixture to the popcorn
Some of the M&M popcorn balls
Jess and Kyle squishing the chocolate popcorn balls.
Dad pretending to sneeze in his nasty gooey popcorn ball hands. I won't even show you the close up its so nasty!

After these festivities we watched Clue the movie on ABC family. If you haven't seen it you should. Its great, really pretty funny and very entertaining. Clue is my favorite board game (of all time) so this was a treat for me. And we actually watched it ALL! :) It has 3 alternate endings and ABC family showed them all in a row which was really fun. 

The next day (Halloween) the festivities resumed. Kyle and I got to sleep in for once and then we helped dad prep the pumpkins for carving. I wanted to be as sustainable as possible, so I saved all of the seeds and other insides so it wouldn't get thrown away. I roasted the seeds (for the first time) and then saved all of the other fruit for grandma in a plastic bag so that she could throw them in her compost bin (that's right my grandma composts!). 

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

Take pumpkin seeds and separate from any pumpkin flesh. Rinse and drain with a strainer.
Measure 3 cups of fresh pumpkin seeds and put in sauce pan with 4 cups of water and 2 tsp of salt
Boil for 15 minutes, then drain in a strainer and let drip dry.
Mix 1 TBSP of olive oil, 1 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp of paprika in the dried sauce pan.
Pat seeds dry and then mix into spice/oil mixture. 
Once thuroughly combined spread 1 layer thick on baking sheets.
Bake for 30 minutes.
recipe courtesy of delish.com

Then we carved our pumpkins. And for me I think this was my first time actually carving a pumpkin by myself. 20 years old. sigh. It was a blast though and our steps looked legit. 
Dad Carving Olivia's Cat Pumpkin.
Kyle Carving His Pumpkin.
Jess Carving Her Pumpkin.
My Pumpkin!
Kyle's Pumpkin!
Jess's Darth Vader Pumpkin.
Olivia and Dad's Cat Pumpkin.
The Porter's Pumpkin. Carved by Kyle. :) 
Look How Cute our Steps look!

Other than that we watched Hocus Pocus while I painted Jess and Olivia's nails to go with their costumes, and then grandma and Bob came to visit. We had homemade chicken and noodles and some biscuits for dinner. Our counter looked surreal.


Olivia made a cute spider t-shirt at day care that she wore up until she transformed into sleeping beauty.
So cute.

We told our cat Griswald, (Gris/z) that it was his day because he is the definition of a black cat :)
Not so happy I woke him up from his nap for the picture but oh well. 

Jess dressed up as a vintage KU cheerleader and Olivia was Sleeping Beauty. They are both way too cute. This year I was without a costume, but next year I will add that to the traditions for sure. :) It just sneaks up on you so fast!

Rock Chalk.

Sleeping Beauty (awake)

It was the greatest Halloween ever. Can't wait until Thanksgiving and Christmas to create more family traditions and fun!