Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Winsome Words Wednesday and a WINNER


#learningisnteasy


Fireworks
a Rafflecopter giveaway
A big congrats to SuAnne H. for winning a tank from Skip N' Whistle! I will be emailing you shortly! Thanks to everyone else that entered my last great giveaway! Another giveaway is scheduled for next week! You won't want to miss it!

Be sure to check out Skip N' Whistle on Facebook and Twitter, as well!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

DIY Fancy Frame



Guys. I love picture frames. The bigger and shabbier, the better. I've been on the hunt for some at our local antique markets. I mean, there's plenty of booths filled with gorgeous wooden frames at $50 each. EACH. And these aren't big frames. These are frames that would fit a 4x6 photo. I love them, but no thanks, okay?

So, I started thinking, I have a whole stack of unused, cheap, sad frames in a closet. Some of the frames came from thrift shops, some were gifts, some I've had for a decade. #hoarder

Anyhoo, I went through the pile of frames and picked out two wooden ones that were from the Dollar Tree. I made sure the smaller one fit perfectly on the bigger frame after I took out both of the frame's backs. I left the glass in the smaller frame, but took out the glass in the bigger frame.


I then used some glue that I had on hand and glued around the back of the smaller frame. I let that dry for a few hours.




I decided chalk paint was the only way to go, and I painted the frames. This blue chalk paint actually came from Home Depot. It isn't Annie Sloan, but for the $8 price tag, it will suffice.


After I let the chalk paint dry, I distressed the frame with sand paper. I used a little of Annie Sloan's clear wax after the distressing.


I added a 4x6 photo to the smaller frame and then put the back on it. I also re-added the back to the larger frame.


And there you have it, a gorgeous $50 boutique photo frame for basically nothing.


Oh, and sorry about the fuzzy photos! It was cloudy that day.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Lavazza


Phew. I'm sure glad this holiday weekend is over and done with. I've had my fill of BBQ, boating, and family. And you know what? I didn't even get any sparklers. #lamesauce 

Anyhoo, I'm stopping in real quick to share a delish recipe and my favorite coffee power house, Lavazza.

If you haven't read about my professed love for this coffee company, you can read my thoughts HERE and HERE. Other wise, let me reiterate myself, I heart Lavazza, and we are in love.

Since Lavazza is based out of Italy, I decided to whip up an Italian dessert.. I found a perfect recipe in Extra Virgin: Recipes & Love from Our Tuscan Kitchen, my new go-to Italian cookbook. I made carnival fritters! I was actually thinking they would taste more like beignets, but they tasted more like biscotti. I might have cooked them a little too long, though. I'm no Paula Deen. 

William and Adrienne ate five a piece. My food critics both loved them. That's all that really matters.


Carnival Fritters

2 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 tablesppons unsalted butter, melted, at room temperature
2 large eggs
1 shot (1 1/2 ounces) Vin Santo (or rum or brandy)
Grated zest of 1 orange
4 cups safflower, vegetable, or canola oil, for deep-frying
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

- In a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the flour, granulated sugar, melted butter, eggs, Vin Santo, and orange zest. Mix for 5 to 7 minutes, until the dough begins detaching from the sides of the bowl.

- Remove the dough from the bowl, seal it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

- On a work surface lightly dusted with flour, roll the dough until it's as thin as fresh pasta. (A pasta machine can also be used for this part.) Using a pastry wheel or pizza cutter, slice the dough into 5-inch-wide strips.

- In a high-sided skillet, add the oil to a level of 2 inches. Heat the oil over high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reads 360 degrees F. Fry the strips of dough (the cenci) in batches, flipping occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes per batch, until they curl slightly and acquire a golden brown color. 

- Transfer the cenci to a platter line with paper towels to absorb the excess oil. Dust with the confectioners' sugar and serve with a glass of Vin Santo.


I collaborated with Lavazza for this post. They provided me with their coffee and the Extra Virgin cookbook.

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